The Gorean Compass is a class given every Thursday by Master Gorm Runo. Classes are held at the Gorean Campus and are given at noon and 6pm SLT. All are encouraged to come and join in the amazing discussions.
My topic today is what might be called, “emotion-charged”, and so I did more preparation than usual in preparing.
I did some research on some of the terms I was going to be tempted to use, and I reviewed the plots and stories in the first twelve novels looking for some quotes.
What I was going to discuss was some of the “Gorean” issues involved in the idea of age limits and “adult” maturity ratings for our Second Life Gorean sims.
In many ways this might seem a “duh” issue. No one really questions the idea that Gorean role play on Second Life should be considered an adult activity.
On my radio show, I sometimes jokingly suggest that people remove small children from the room before I discuss something, or read from one of the books. I always assume it is a joke, and no one has their little ones clustered around them listening to Goreans Portal Radio.
However, the Second Life community standards allow anyone over the age of 18 to access adult content. Perhaps, there are some that would suggest that is really too young to be exposed to Gor, and we should say “21 or over.” There are some of us that might even think the age better set at 30. That is a bit upsetting to me though, because I clearly remember the mantra of my youth, “don’t trust anyone over 30”, and now realize I am chanting its opposite and saying “don’t trust anyone until they reach 30.”
The books were not much help. There is a dearth of information given on such things as child raising, and the education of the young. About the hardest thing you could imagine to role play in Gor is a kid. What the hell did they do? There are a few mentions of them in crowd scenes, but we get no intimate look at their education or daily activities.
I think this was not just by chance. I came across this definition during my research.
Sexual maturity is the capability of an organism to reproduce. It may be considered
synonymous with adulthood, but, in humans, puberty encompasses the process of sexual maturation and adulthood is based on cultural definitions.
Adulthood is based on cultural definitions? Ah, but Natural Order, and an understanding that we are the result of millions of years of evolution that has hard wired us in ways we must recognize and learn to control would suggest that artificial cultural definitions create chaos.
I read a very interesting study, and will cite it in case any wish to read it. It is a history of laws governing “the age of consent”, and it reflects the gradual move from the natural animal definition of sexual maturity to the modern cultural one. The process began 800 years ago, and the very first laws were setting the “age of consent” at 12, and gradually they moved up to 13, and eventually 16. At the peak of the pendulum swing, many places established 18 as the age.
In Marauders of Gor, there is a long scene at the big Torvaldsland social gathering. A man has died in an avalanche, and his teenage son, now head of the family, must defend a challenge for his young sister. The bad guy in the scene is named Bjarni of Thorstein Camp.
He claims he has no quarrel with the kid, but he simply wants the girl for a bond maid to serve his crew of Raiders. Ivar Forkbeard is upset about this, but his issue seems to be that she is a Free of Torvaldsland, and he doesn’t think you should be making your own girls into slaves or bond maids when there are other people’s girls to steal.
Tarl, however, representing the emerging superior man has an issue with her age.
Here is the quote:
“Why do you not challenge a baby?” asked Ivar Forkbeard.
Bjarni looked at him, not pleasantly, “I want the girl for Thorstein Camp,” he said, “I have no quarrel with children.”
“Will she be branded there and collared?” asked Ivar
“Thorstein Camp.” said Bjarni, “needs no Free Women.”
“She is of Torvaldsland,” said Ivar
“She can be taught to squirm and carry mead as well as any other wench,” said Bjarni.
I had no doubt this was true. Yet, the girl was young. I doubted a girl should be put into a collar before she was fifteen.”
Page 147-148 Marauders of Gor
Of course, Tarl steps in, and acts as champion, saving the girl, but he doesn’t really help the age situation. In fact, he is setting his own arbitrary line in the sand at a very young and dangerous fifteen. Which is three full years under Second Life’s 18, and twice that to the more common age of 21 as a more proper age to indulge in those kinds of activities.
This is from the article I mentioned above. It is entitled “Age of Consent Laws”
The outcry it provoked pushed British legislators to raise the age of consent to 16 years, and stirred reformers in the U.S, such as the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, the British Empire, and Europe to push for similar legislation. By 1920, Anglo-American legislators had responded by increasing the age of consent to 16 years, and even as high as 18 years.
While those ages were well beyond the normal age of menstruation, proponents justified them on scientific grounds that psychological maturity came later than physiological maturity. They also argued that the age of consent should be aligned with other benchmarks of development, such as the age at which girls could enter into contracts and hold property rights, typically 21 years. Opponents remained focused on physiological maturity, however, and argued that girls in their teens were sufficiently developed not to need legal protection.
There was the key argument. Psychological maturity came later than physiological maturity.
It was almost like nature had screwed up. It would seem to make more sense that they would occur at the same time. When a person was physically capable of sex, they should have been mentally ready. But, we all know that isn’t the case.
Evolution didn’t make a mistake. For most of those millions and millions of years, the only priority was basic survival. We did not have a lot of time to even think about psychological maturity, and if a female did not produce babies, and quickly and often, a cockroach or some other species would be up here giving this discussion right now, and not a Home Sapiens.
But, starting about those 800 years ago, and accelerating in this whole new age of human history was a shift in daily priority. Nature designed females to get us here, and here we are now. Overpopulation and not under is our problem. It made perfect sense to be a bit patient now
In the book, Tribesman of Gor, Tarl and Hassan the bandit encounter a group of young girls escaping during a raid. While it is not specifically mentioned, it is suggested these were young teenage girls. Here is what happens.
“Are you female slaves?” he asked.
“No, Masters!” cried one.
“Run then to the desert.” said Hassan.
They turned about, crouching, by the wall, trying to cover themselves.
“But we are stripped,” cried one.
“Run!” said Hassan, smacking her smartly with the flat of his blade.
“Oh”, she cried and fled, the others following, into the darkness.
“They are pretty, ” said Hassan. “Perhaps, we should have kept them.”
“Perhaps,” I admitted. One, a wide hipped little brunet, I thought would have looked well at my feet.
“Yet,” said Hassan, “this seems scarcely a time propitious for the braceleting of wenches.”
“You are right,” I observed.
“Besides,” said Hassan, “they were young. In two years or so they would be more ripe for the picking.”
“Others may have them then.” I said.
“He shrugged. “There are always young, beautiful wenches to make slaves.” he said.
“True,” I said.
Page 186 Tribesman of Gor
This little passage represents, in my opinion, exactly the right approach to the problem of underage girls.
First, it is acknowledging that they are not physical children, but organisms that have reached “sexual maturity” and have actually been designed by natural selection to attract the sexual interest and attention of males. It is emotional and mental maturity that is lacking, but by no means physical maturity.
However, we are no longer a species that is struggling to avoid extinction or beset by dangerous predators. There is no longer any need to rush things, and it makes perfect sense to allow these females a few extra years to allow their psychological development to catch up to their physical development. As Hassan puts it, “In two years or so they would be more ripe for the picking.”
And the men of Earth have additional incentive to follow Hassan’s advice. As was pointed out in the Age of Consent article, sexual activity with underage girls has severe legal consequences, that Gorean Men would not have to worry about.
I have said that ignoring Natural Order and our biological imperatives creates chaos.
Men are being labeled as deviants and pedophiles for being attracted to nubile teenage girls designed by eons of evolution to be attractive to Men. We have made something natural into something illegal and immoral> Also, we are forgetting that the girls themselves are sexually mature organisms and many of them are not going to pay much attention to advice that they wait until more “mentally mature” to explore their sexuality.
Their choice of sexual partners is going to be limited now to teenage boys, who are even more psychologically immature than the girls.
This foolish solution to the artificially created situation has even been codified into our laws. Among the various Age of Consent laws, and they vary widely across the United States, and even more widely across the World, there is the Colorado Age of Consent law that states:
In Colorado, a person who is under 15 can legally consent to have sex with someone who is no more than 4 years older. Additionally, a person under 17 can legally consent to sex with a person who is no more than 10 years older.
In other words,,,a 12 year old could consent to a 16 year old boy. The law wants to make sure no young girl is having sex with someone older, more mature, more capable of taking care of her, and any resulting offspring, and heaven forbid, more controlling and dominant. Her choices are limited, legally, to her playmates in the sandbox. What could go wrong with that?
Teenage pregnancy is a major problem. Our children are having babies, which was a good thing back in the cave days, but tragic for everyone concerned in our modern day.
I think the whole situation has been thrown into social chaos. If we had approached the problem rationally, it might have been different, but we have not even come close to rational in this area. We have screwed it up, and big time.
However, this is not our problem here in Second Life Gor.
We are running an extremely adult playground here, and we are not worried about popping out babies to avoid extinction. We can be like Hassan, and tell the young girls to “run to the desert” and grow up some more.
We are way too small a group to do anything about changing the insane direction of Earth society, and the relationships we develop here are so alternative lifestylish and so emotionally charged that we would want all of us , male and female , to have the maximum amount of time to maturity sufficiently to handle them. We know that age does not impair our ability to physically handle them, but it certainly has much to do with our ability to mentally handle them.
So, we need to be very vigilant in policing our community and adhering to the guidelines of age participation in our activities. If anything, we should be discussing if 21, or even 25 might be more appropriate age limits.
Remember, in the struggle of Natural Order, between our rational nature and our animal nature, it is the rational that must win out, and we must be strong, and fierce in our control of the animal side. We should not ever be ashamed of our animal nature, nor should we deny its existence or doubt its power, but we need to be firmly in control of it.
That is what earns us the name Goreans.