Commenter Elisea observed the temptation women have to worship what they fantasize as the purifying power of their vaginas:
This is the prototypical female story, stemming from the original Beauty and the Beast. There’s a reason why they are so obsessed with vampires, werewolves, BDSM billionaires, and stunningly crazy things like werebears and weredragons. The creature is inherently dark and dangerous, but she tames him with her moral purity and magical sexuality (by which I mean she starts out as a complete virgin having sex with a man who has bedded hundreds of women before her, yet she wows him sexually into being insatiable for her). Not only is it important for him to be an otherworldly creature so as to provide her with the best possible protection (vampires and werewolves are pretty unbeatable), but they are also creatures of darkness- and obviously this applies just as well to BDSM billionaires, criminals, and the like. By being considered morally inferior by the female, which she frequently and openly acknowledges, she then has a lifetime of opportunities to use it against him whenever she wants.
This is why women are interested in vampires over superheroes. The ideal male must be eligible to go through the female purification system.
This temptation is equal parts self worship and rationalization of women’s promiscuity and sexual attraction to dark triad traits.
What makes this particular temptation so pernicious is that men share the same temptation, as this goes all the way back to the fall. Just like women, men are strongly tempted to worship what they see as the holy vagina. Earlier this week I shared two examples of conservative Christian leaders teaching that God speaks to men through their wives’ vaginas. But this also manifests in a more general form, where women’s sexuality is seen as a benevolent mystical force guiding society. As George Gilder explains in Men and Marriage:
Modern society relies on predictable, regular, long-term human activities, corresponding to the sexual faculties of women. The male pattern is the enemy of social stability. This is the ultimate source of female sexual control and the critical reason for it. Women domesticate and civilize male nature. They can jeopardize male discipline and identity, and civilization as well, merely by giving up the role.
Gilder believes that women are more cerebral and wise about sex than men, who unlike women have mindless sex drives. This wisdom comes from women’s ability to conceive and bear children. Women use their innate sexual wisdom to decide how to dispense salvation with their vagina:
…greater sexual control and discretion–more informed and deliberate sexual powers–are displayed by women in all societies known to anthropology. Indeed, this intelligent and controlled female sexuality is what makes human communities possible.
This difference between the sexes gives the woman the superior position in most sexual encounters. The man may push and posture, but the woman must decide. He is driven; she must set the terms and conditions, goals and destinations of the journey. Her faculty of greater natural restraint and selectivity makes the woman the sexual judge and executive, finally appraising the offerings of men, favoring one and rejecting another, and telling them what they must do to be saved or chosen. Managing the sexual nature of a healthy society, women impose the disciplines, make the choices, and summon the male efforts to support it.
Note: Gilder is clearly a primary influence on Glenn Stanton, and Stanton quotes this same work by Gilder in his recent article Manhood is not natural (H/T MikeJJ). I’ll do a follow up post on Stanton’s article shortly.