On Seduction, Trust and Other Homilies

SEDUCE– verb
Persuade to do the inadvisable; lure away from duty, principle or right behavior
Entice into sexual activity; induce to have sex

An act of winning the love or sexual favor of someone; conquest
Enticing someone astray from right behavior

— ORIGIN Latin seducere ‘lead aside or away’

“Seduction is often difficult to distinguish from rape. In seduction, the rapist bothers to buy a bottle of wine.”
Andrea Dworkin: Letters from a War Zone (1988)

Seduction is easy. All it takes is charm, magnetism, a connection to your own sexuality, knowing your subject, an act of will – and focusing the laser beam until you fry your prey… Easy. It’s a challenge, a one-time contest in which the person with more time and intensity and dedication and single-mindedness and willingness to do whatever it takes to win wins. And then it all stops, falls apart, from lack of attention. It’s no contest at all… Easy.

But keeping it up, that’s difficult (and oh so much rarer and truer). In the light of day, over the long haul, 24/7, after the initial buzz has worn off and the orgasm’s over (because they always end, no matter how many you might have in a row) it becomes crystal clear: seduction is the wooing and winning, but it cannot hold a candle to the loving and staying. Scrape a bit, and you see that seduction is all shiny surface, a coat or two of temporary lacquer. But loving runs right down to the roots, spreading deep below the ground.

Seduction is easy. Love, on the other hand, is simple.

Love’s not about the getting and having, it’s about the “getting” and giving, caring and sharing, trusting and knowing and being known. It doesn’t have an end game, or concern itself with what’s fair or whose turn it is. It’s not about artifice, it’s about real. And that’s not easy; it’s just so very simple.

What could be more tempting than beyond temptation? There’s really no contest at all.

Are you loving – or seducing? Are you being loved – or seduced?
In these tough economic times, it’s all the more important to know the difference. Because at the end the day, it’s great to come in out of the cold, cruel world of work – or looking for work – let down your guard, and count on feeling known, cared for and safe. It’s awfully good to be able to trust someone, especially the someone you’re supposed to be able to trust.

Copyright © 2009 Marlin S. Potash. All rights reserved.


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