Your fate is to be yourself, both punishment and crime.


Don’t condemn sensuality. It has been condemned by the whole world, and because of their condemnation, the energy that can flower in sensuality moves into perversions, jealousy, anger, hatred — a kind of life which is dry, with no juice. Sensuousness is one of the greatest blessings to humanity. It is your sensitivity, it is your consciousness. Consciousness filtering through the body is what sensuousness is.

CDsKjE8WEAAVJ60.jpg_largePh © Henri Cartier-Bresson

16 thoughts on “Your fate is to be yourself, both punishment and crime.

  1. “…there was a new voice
    which you slowly
    recognized as your own,
    that kept you company
    as you strode deeper and deeper
    into the world,
    determined to do
    the only thing you could do —
    determined to save
    the only life you could save.”
    – Mary Oliver

  2. Amen to this ~ Your fate is to be yourself, both punishment and crime.
    Sensuality should be celebrated without a doubt ~ it allows us all to be free and with our emotions running loose, we care more and are happier. It seems only folks who do not like seeing such freedoms are religious leaders and politicians who find that fear and guilt work for their needs.

    Yes, this post should definitely be celebrated, and also those two photos by Henri Cartier-Bresson are brilliant, worth hanging in any museum 🙂

    • I saw a little flicker of fun in your eyes when writing about the “two photos” of Bresson while you very well know the truth:) I saw it, stop smiling, please :)….
      Happier you say?? sometimes, certain things are just too much for most of the people… they have no idea how to handle sensuality. What was invented with civilization was the ability of some to deny sensuality to others…


      But… please read what follows. A letter of Anaïs Nin for her Henry (Miller):

      Dear Henry,
      “You destroy and you suffer… I often see how you sob over what you destroy, how you want to stop and just worship; and you do stop, and then a moment later you are at it again with a knife, like a surgeon.
      In some strange way I am not with you, I am against you. We are destined to hold two truths. I love you and I fight you.
      And you, the same. We will be stronger for it, each of us, stronger with our love and our hate.
      When you caricature and nail down and tear apart, I hate you. I want to answer you, not with weak or stupid poetry but with a wonder as strong as your reality. I want to fight your surgical knife with all the occult and magical forces of the world.
      I want to both combat you and submit to you, because as a woman I adore your courage, I adore the pain it engenders, I adore the struggle you carry in yourself, which I alone fully realize, I adore your terrifying sincerity. I adore your strength.
      You are right. The world is to be caricatured, but I know, too, how much you can love what you caricature. How much passion there is in you! It is that I feel in you. I do not feel the savant, the revealer, the observer. When I am with you, it is the blood I sense.

      This time you are not going to awake from the ecstasies of our encounters to reveal only the ridiculous moments.
      No. You won’t do it this time, because while we live together, while you examine my indelible rouge effacing the design of my mouth, spreading like a blood after an operation (you kissed my mouth and it was gone, the design of it was lost as in a watercolor, the colors ran).
      While you do that, I seize upon the wonder that is brushing by (the wonder, oh, the wonder of my lying under you), and I bring it to you, I breathe it around you.
      Take it. I feel prodigal with my feelings when you love me, feelings so unblunted, so new, Henry, not lost in resemblance to other moments, so much ours, yours, mine, you and I together, not any man or any woman together.
      The room is full of the incandescence you poured into me. The room will explode when I sit at the side of your bed and you talk to me. I don’t hear your words: your voice reverberated against my body like another kind of caress, another kind of penetration.
      I have no power over your voice. It comes straight from you to me. I could stuff my ears and it would find its way into my blood and make it rise.
      I am impervious to the flat visual attack of things. I see your khaki shirt hung up on a peg. It is your shirt and I could see you in it — you, wearing a color I detest. But I see you, not the khaki shirt.
      Something stirs in me as I look at it, and it is certainly the human you. It is a vision of the human you revealing an amazing delicacy to me. It is your khaki shirt and you are the man who is the axis of my world now. I revolve around the richness of your being.

      ‘Come closer to me, come closer. I promise you it will be beautiful.’

      You keep your promise.”

      Henry writes her back:

      “Anaïs, I don’t know how to tell you what I feel. I live in perpetual expectancy. You come and the time slips away in a dream. It is only when you go that I realize completely your presence. And then it is too late.

      You numb me. […] This is a little drunken, Anaïs. I am saying to myself ‘here is the first woman with whom I can be absolutely sincere.’ I remember your saying – ‘you could fool me, I wouldn’t know it.’ When I walk along the boulevards and think of that. I can’t fool you—and yet I would like to.

      I mean that I can never be absolutely loyal—it’s not in me. I love women, or life, too much—which it is, I don’t know. But laugh, Anaïs, I love to hear you laugh. You are the only woman who has a sense of gaiety, a wise tolerance—no more, you seem to urge me to betray you. I love you for that. […]

      I don’t know what to expect of you, but it is something in the way of a miracle. I am going to demand everything of you—even the impossible, because you encourage it. You are really strong. I even like your deceit, your treachery. It seems aristocratic to me.”

      so, let’s celebrate now…. Hurry.

    • Oh, little mention…
      Sensuality is part of being sensitive. Because of the fear of sensuality all the religions are afraid of sensitivity, and sensitivity is awareness. So they go on talking of being aware, but they cannot allow you to be sensitive, so you cannot be aware.

      It becomes just talk.

      And they cannot allow you indulgence. In fact, they have coined the word indulgence. It has a condemnatory note in it. The moment you say “indulgence,” you have already condemned. Some of us, condemn ourselves – anyway.

      Don’t be indulgent with me. Why do I say that? I know well you are not.

      I am listening what you already know I like

      Pureness. Sensitivity. Sensuality.

      • The Anaïs Nin ~ Henry Miller letter is a brilliant celebration of what we are as humans, no?!?

        Great piece of music which I enjoyed listening to this Monday morning…an indulgence to start the week, a words that I now embrace 🙂 Pureness, sensitivity and sensuality ~ a perfect recipe for a great day/life. Cheers ~

      • A brilliant celebration of what we are as humans?? Oh.. do you really think so many of us ever thought to pronounce phrases as ” The room is full of the incandescence you poured into me. “?? . I do not think so, forgive me 🙂
        But I do think we all have a certain primitive, biological drive to fall in love.
        Plato asserts in his Symposium that initially all humans were whole, hermaphroditic beings with four hands, four legs, two identical faces on one head/neck, four ears, and both sets of genitals. When these beautiful, strong beings tried to overthrow the gods, Zeus split them into two—man and woman— and created the innate desire of human beings for one another to feel whole again.
        FEEL WHOLE AGAIN : A few words which are scratching my skin actually. Especially when I read what a dear friend wrote this morning: “politically incorrect to cultivate deep friendships unless they are for the purposes of long term pair bonding and reproduction”.

        Long term pair bonding and reproduction??? that is all marriage is about?? how depressive!!!!!! some of us write in such a beautiful way (and the author of the post I am talking about has my deep and sincere appreciation! But even a well executed metaphor can be simply too much!)
        Messing up concepts as love, friendship, relationship bring up some confused feelings. But certain things are always so sadly clear! (as someone says!)
        Relationship/ Friendship is a structure, and love is unstructured. So love relates, certainly, but never becomes a relationship/friendship. Love is a moment-to-moment process. Love is a state of your being, not a relationship. There are loving people and there are unloving people. Unloving people pretend to be loving through the relationship. Loving people need not have any relationship – love is enough.

        Be a loving person rather than in a love relationship – because relationships happen one day and disappear another day. They are flowers; in the morning they bloom, by the evening they are gone.

        But people find it very difficult to be a loving person, so they create a relationship – and befool that way that “Now I am a loving person because I am in a relationship.” And the relationship may be just one of monopoly, possessiveness, exclusiveness.

        Relationship may be just out of fear, may not have anything to do with love. Relationship may be just a kind of security – financial or something else.
        The relationship is needed only because love is not there!!!
        Relationship is a substitute.

        “There has been a wave of attempted suicides following the onset of depression caused by friendship loss. ”

        That is really too much.

        Hey, be my friend from now on, else I will try to become one of those making part from sad statistics :). Pleaseeee don’t leave me alone… I am a suffering little dog lost in the woods without you 🙂


        All things far from being Pure.
        The World is so different from what Anaïs Nin “created” with Henry Miller… but here I send you another piece:


        Don’t expect me to be sane anymore. Don’t let’s be sensible. It was a marriage at Louveciennes—you can’t dispute it. I came away with pieces of you sticking to me; I am walking about, swimming, in an ocean of blood, your Andalusian blood, distilled and poisonous. Everything I do and say and think relates back to the marriage. I saw you as the mistress of your home, a Moor with a heavy face, a negress with a white body, eyes all over your skin, woman, woman, woman. I can’t see how I can go on living away from you—these intermissions are death. How did it seem to you when Hugo came back? Was I still there? I can’t picture you moving about with him as you did with me. Legs closed. Frailty. Sweet, treacherous acquiescence. Bird docility. You became a woman with me. I was almost terrified by it. You are not just thirty years old—you are a thousand years old.

        Here I am back and still smouldering with passion, like wine smoking. Not a passion any longer for flesh, but a complete hunger for you, a devouring hunger. I read the paper about suicides and murders and I understand it all thoroughly. I feel murderous, suicidal. I feel somehow that it is a disgrace to do nothing, to just bide one’s time, to take it philosophically, to be sensible. Where has gone the time when men fought, killed, died for a glove, a glance, etc? (A victrola is playing that terrible aria from Madama Butterfly—”Some day he’ll come!”)

        I still hear you singing in the kitchen—a sort of inharmonic, monotonous Cuban wail. I know you’re happy in the kitchen and the meal you’re cooking is the best meal we ever ate together. I know you would scald yourself and not complain. I feel the greatest peace and joy sitting in the dining room listening to you rustling about, your dress like the goddess Indra studded with a thousand eyes.

        Anais, I only thought I loved you before; it was nothing like this certainty that’s in me now. Was all this so wonderful only because it was brief and stolen? Were we acting for each other, to each other? Was I less I, or more I, and you less or more you? Is it madness to believe that this could go on? When and where would the drab moments begin? I study you so much to discover the possible flaws, the weak points, the danger zones. I don’t find them—not any. That means I am in love, blind, blind. To be blind forever! (Now they’re singing “Heaven and Ocean” from La Gioconda.)

        I picture you playing the records over and over—Hugo’s records. “Parlez moi d amour.” The double life, double taste, double joy and misery. How you must be furrowed and ploughed by it. I know all that, but I can’t do anything to prevent it. I wish indeed it were me who had to endure it. I know now your eyes are wide open. Certain things you will never believe anymore, certain gestures you will never repeat, certain sorrows, misgivings, you will never again experience. A kind of white criminal fervor in your tenderness and cruelty. Neither remorse nor vengeance, neither sorrow nor guilt. A living it out, with nothing to save you from the abysm but a high hope, a faith, a joy that you tasted, that you can repeat when you will.

        All morning I was at my notes, ferreting through my life records, wondering where to begin, how to make a start, seeing not just another book before me but a life of books. But I don’t begin. The walls are completely bare—I had taken everything down before going to meet you. It is as though I had made ready to leave for good. The spots on the walls stand out—where our heads rested. While it thunders and lightnings I lie on the bed and go through wild dreams. We’re in Seville and then in Fez and then in Capri and then in Havana. We’re journeying constantly, but there is always a machine and books, and your body is always close to me and the look in your eyes never changes. People are saying we will be miserable, we will regret, but we are happy, we are laughing always, we are singing. We are talking Spanish and French and Arabic and Turkish. We are admitted everywhere and they strew our path with flowers.

        I say this is a wild dream—but it is this dream I want to realize. Life and literature combined, love the dynamo, you with your chameleon’s soul giving me a thousand loves, being anchored always in no matter what storm, home wherever we are. In the mornings, continuing where we left off. Resurrection after resurrection. You asserting yourself, getting the rich varied life you desire; and the more you assert yourself the more you want me, need me. Your voice getting hoarser, deeper, your eyes blacker, your blood thicker, your body fuller. A voluptuous servility and tyrannical necessity. More cruel now than before—consciously, wilfully cruel. The insatiable delight of experience.


      • “Relationship/ Friendship is a structure, and love is unstructured” and I do think initially this is the case with love, but eventually love needs to evolve and gain structure. Entropy is the one law of life we all live with and love with, and without structure this great, irrational emotion of love succumbs to petty parts of life.

        I do agree that love is the most powerful thing on the planet ~ but if is to endure between people, then eventually rationality has to create structure in order for them to partake in “reality” which I think is not too kind to love. 🙂 However, this are just simple thoughts from someone who has yet to have his morning coffee ~

      • GOOD MORNING! Two hours after midnight and I am still working!
        After taking your coffe, please note I wrote “relationship MAY not have anything to do with love”, and I know well situations where relationships miss love completely and they are (sadly) based exactly on this: monopoly, possessiveness, and false exclusiveness. If we look into thousands of people’s lives, their relationships – it is all misery, but they are covering it up, pretending everything is going okay.

        Love is a moment-to-moment process. Love is a state of your being. Love creates that “structure” you are talking about day after day.
        Love is the nourishment we all need and certainly deserve: but we can not force it. Pretend it.
        I guess we should talk more about later.

        Have a nice day!

    • Jhana, thank you for visiting. I really appreciate that.
      I am far from being a Zen person, but I did like the quote (the author is mentioned as tag).
      I will answer you with what follows, a funny anecdote 🙂 about Picasso.

      A lady was appreciating Picasso’s pictures and she said, “Yesterday I went to a friend’s house and there I saw your self-portrait. And I loved it so much, and I was so impressed, that I kissed the portrait.”

      Picasso looked at the lady and said, “And did the portrait reply? Did the picture kiss you in response?”

      The lady said, “How foolish, how can the picture respond?”

      Then Picasso said, “Then that was not me. A dead thing; how could it be me?”

      The same for me. I am not myself without that capacity to “answer” – if there is someone deserving an answer.

      Have a nice evening,

      • There is no need of an answer. And certainly no one “deserving” of an answer. I saw your post on another blog, and I immediately recognized Osho’s voice. I didn’t know if you realized where the quote came from or not. Sometimes people don’t. The name often gets lost. I just thought you would like to know. I’m always happy to see an Osho quote. Regards.

  3. Dear Jhana,

    a WordPress dialogue may be missunderstood. My English suffers and there are a lot of details you do not know about me.
    You certainly deserve answers; I just texted someone saying that I am deeply touched after reading about you and some of the articles published on your blog.
    “if there is someone deserving an answer” has to do with my personal background, my way of being and with the sensuality. As I am alive, my senses are functioning to their total capacity – but this is a very long story. Little by little I hope I will share it with you.

    The name Osho could never get lost with me. .. and I am so glad this quote brought you here!
    I must thank you again for the visit and the attention.

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