Sunday, June 27, 2010

Review: Sacred Unions, Sacred Passions - A Must Read for Christians

Two small children kissing.Image via Wikipedia
Sacred Unions, Sacred Passions:
Engaging the Mystery of Friendship Between Men and Women

By Dan Brennan

Faith Dance Publishing
ISBN: 9780982580707
184 Pages

Sacred Unions, Sacred Passions: Engaging the Mystery of Friendship Between Men and WomenI have made the outlandish suggestion that there is more to oneness in male-female relationships and sexuality than just sex or marriage. (p. 145)

What if cross-sex communion with a full range of nongenital passion is realistically possible and accessible in the new creation without violating the marriage bed? (p. 110)

Does the "true nature" of close male-female intimacy inherently lead to sex? (p. 54)

"In so many ways our culture trains us to be unfit for friendship." ---Paul Wadell (p. 33)

"You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not stopped kissing my feet."--Jesus Christ (p,119)

I don't usually use so many direct quotes from a book. but I believe you need to get the jist of what is covered by Sacred Unions, Sacred Passions by Dan Brennan! Now that's what I'm talking about Willis!"

Yesterday I reviewed what might be called a sex manual; today I review what might be called a sexuality manual...In some ways, the spirituality aspect of these books are the same.

Brennan mentions the study of young children needing touch and intimacy in order to grow. What happened to that philosophy? According to Brennan, through his well-research book, touch and intimacy were Freudized! Specifically, touching and intimacy were part of erotic love and, therefore, from a Christian standpoint, taboo to singles. Yet Jesus was single, remained unmarried--but had female, and male, friends and confidants!

Personally I'm not so sure that it was Freud that did all the damage; I lay the blame right where it should be for Christians--The Church. Here are two personal examples:

I was crying, hurt by what had happened...My pastor followed me outside to hug me, stating that it wasn't really allowed...

I wanted to discuss a personal problem with another pastor; I was told that a woman would have to be present (somebody who did not have vows saying that they would not divulge any of the counseling). I refused...

As a single, I can attest to everything Dan Brennan states about today's church culture--we are isolated, ignored, or if we become close to somebody, viewed as a potential "other woman" that could bring about marital problems. Not even our pastors are allowed to care and show love to singles!

Dan Brennan brings forth example after example of the potential of friendship, of communion within the Christian community. Yet, it is as if readings from the Bible have been so distorted by our sexualized culture that there is no way to reach out to a brother church member to seek guidance, counseling, prayer, yes friendship.

Yet this is what we were called to do? Like the kiss of the innocent children, or the grateful woman who washed Jesus' feet, not every intimate relationship leads to a sexual encounter! Have you been as angry and frustrated as me as a single woman? Have you worked and become close friends with a male co-worker, or even your boss, and have it frowned upon by other coworkers or a spouse?

Now we have sexual harrassment laws that say never touch a co-worker, never show friendship or concern. Why? Because there is always a sexual connotation applied or assumed. Dan Brennan has spoken out. I for one, totally support what He is teaching as God's word! It's a start, Dan--but there is so far to go! Keep writing and start sharing even more. Christians need to hear you!

Of course I consider this a must-read for anyone in the Christian community...Anybody else? I think it is a cultural issue as well...what do you think?

G. A. Bixler

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  1. Glenda, I am so encouraged by your response and this review. I have been deeply blessed by the responses I have received from singles to SUSP. Opens up a huge conversation that has been buried. Thank you very much, and I so pray that you will be able to experience the deep blessings of friendship.

  2. Dan, thankfully as a career woman I have had many friends both male and female... But as a single woman, I have faced the sly innuendos when I was promoted or received the unwanted propositions. In my opinion, men have the bigger problem than women...they are so socialized to be the macho male on the make, that sooner or later they think every relationship must turn to sex...

    That's why I think you should keep writing. I've thought about writing the single woman in church version something like yours...but my emotions get too involved! LOL

    Thanks for your feedback!