This article accompanies the fable
The Whore's Revenge
Don Juan's Proverbs of Hell
1. Sex is Life. Love is not Life. Love is the Abyss.
2. Sex is light, fire, friction, a spiral, exterior. Love is interior, a vicious circle.
3. Sex isn’t just sexual intercourse. Some equate it with the divine. Or the demonic.
4. Sex is not Romance; Romance is the human quest for Love, not Sex.
5. Sex is everywhere, from a glance to a butterfly tattoo.
6. The repression of Sex occurs in our surrender to the experts, to the Sexual Inquisition, and they are everywhere.
7. The price of democracy is the temptation to add more regulations; the price of openness is the temptation to violate those regulations.
8. Sexual pleasure is enhanced by risk, by transgression, by the forbidden.
9. Affluence and education just mean you have more to lose by trying the forbidden.
10. The erotic child is a myth. Children aren’t “eroticized”; adults are.
11. Adults are attracted to children’s ability to reshape reality imaginatively and playfully. The child is father to the man, but the gift is lost with age, which is why we have Generation Gaps.
12. Seductive adults communicate best with teens and children.
13. Sex scandals are secrets wrapped inside of mysteries, not right vanquishing wrong.
14. The fate of Romance in the West: over-protective adults as Hero, and teachers, priests and politicians revive the Monster to be slain…again and again. In the name of the children.
15. The over-protection of children makes their violation inevitable.
16. Creating sexual victims robs them of independence, imprisoning them in the “police state of sexual myth.” Adults are more susceptible than children.
17. Various Age of Consent penal codes are pornographic documents.
18. Sex offenders are today's witches. From sexual harassment to sexual abuse and sexual assault, to predators and prey; this is the language of the Inquisition.
19. The banishment of Sex from Western society is directly proportional to the decline of the Western birth rate.
20. Sex can be dangerous; the act of creating Life can be the act that kills you.
Are we in Hell yet? Perhaps we've always been there. This Flemish vision of Hell by Pieter Bruegel the Elder is from around 1562 and it is known as Mad Meg (Dulle Griet in Flemish). It's difficult to see all the details but Meg is leading a women's crusade against Hell itself - that's its mouth on the left. Click on the image for a larger version.
While some see Bruegel as mocking loud and interfering peasant women who weren't intimidated by Hell in the least, I think there's admiration here too. Compare that with Simon Marmion's version below, from around 1470-1475, where it's located similarly inside the mouth of the monster Acheron, but with a raging inferno that must have evoked the torture chambers of the age. Two giants hold the monster's mouth open.
The image is a detail from an illuminated manuscript, The Visions of the Knight Tondal, which was written in Latin in the 12th century and widely read across Europe. The manuscript is held at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles.