There seems to be some discussion about this particular phrase “Virginity is a state of mind” with regards to the controversial CSE programme by AWARE. One of the issue with this statement is the total absurdity of it from a physical POV. If a girl has had penetrative sex (i.e. had a penis inserted into a vagina or even the ass), obviously she is no longer a virgin, at least from the perspective that virginity is defined by the physical state that an individual can be in.
From a progammer’s POV, the class Human has a boolean field virginity with default value true. After the method insertPenisIntoVagina (or insertPenisIntoAss) has been called, the boolean field virginity is changed to false.
Yet being a virgin and conversely not being a virgin, in some sectors of our society, carries a whole lot of connatations than just being a change in physical state.
Go to Google and enter this as a search term ‘define:virginity‘.
Some of the results:
virgin – pure: in a state of sexual virginity; “pure and vestal modesty”; “a spinster or virgin lady”; “men have decreed that their women must be pure and virginal”
virginal – untouched or undefiled
Now, let’s use google and search with this term ‘define: undefiled‘.
immaculate: free from stain or blemish
Again from a computer programmer’s POV, the class Human has a boolean field called ‘moral person’ (i.e good person, the kind you want your son or daughter to marry) with default value true.
To some segments of our society, when you call the method insertPenisIntoVagina, the boolean field ‘moral person’ becomes false.
Do you know what shame and guilt can do to a person? There are very real esteem issues that can arise when we keep drumming into our youth that just because they are no longer virgins they are defiled and not pure. Once you tell someone they have lost something, it is much easier for them to behave in a manner consistent with not having it than actually be encouraged to get it back. Basically, you tell kids them losing virginity equal to them being delinquents (cos only immoral spawn of the devil will have premarital sex) they will behave so.
Well, the way some of us approach the issue of virginity dumps a whole lot of guilt, shame and esteem issues on our kids. Now, this can be bad in a whole lot of ways.
Not So Hypothetical Scenario 1.
The young naive girl has sex once because she thinks she loves a guy. They break up. She moves on to another relationship. This time she wants to value herself more and not just be used as some fuck toy. The guy tells her, ‘why so uptight. I mean, not say you are a virgin. Just bang bang only what. I mean, you love me right?’
Now she looks at herself and goes, ‘Yeah, I mean, it is true. I’ve done it once. What’s the difference between doing it a second time. Not like I can reset my physical state. So yeah, I lose it already might as well just do. After all, I do love this guy.’
Not So Hypothetical Scenario 2.
Similar to the above, but this time, the guy is slightly nastier. ‘Don’t be a bitch lah. You think you damn fucking atas and pure is it. I know you not virgin. Just 1 fuck also act like your pussy is some treasure cave that cannot open.’
The girl thinks, ‘Yeah, I’m trash. I mean, my mom and sunday school teacher told me that if I lose my virginity, I’m no longer pure. I’m dirty. He is probably right, I mean, it isn’t like I haven’t done it before. Maybe I’m being too uptight.’
Not all of us grow up in the same environment. Some of us are taught to value something more than others. Just because someone isn’t a virgin doesn’t make a person any less moral. But certain segments of our society place such importance in this physical state that it can cloud how we look at someone else – we see, not someone who might have had sex because they thought it was a natural extension of being in love, but a filthy dirty corrupted individual who just couldn’t control himself or herself.
‘Virginity is a state of mind’ allows people to do a soft reset. Yes, the physical state may not have changed, but that one decision in the past does not need to affect how they approach future situations when they are put in a position where sex is going to happened (or pressure is applied to make it happen).
From a computer programmer’s POV, just because the boolean field ‘virginity’ is equal to ‘false’ does not mean that the boolean field ‘will_have_sex’ is set to true always. The soft reset is a decrease of the integer variable ‘likely_to_have_sex_because_of_past_decisions’ to a number close to zero if not zero.
‘Virginity is a state of mind’ also allows those who value virginity and attach such strong moral attitudes to it to separate another individual’s past physical actions and current state of moral and emotional being.
At the end of the day, Christians can’t diss the statement ‘Virginity is a state of mind’ when they attach moral values and principles to the physical state of being a virgin because they clearly have shown that ‘Virginity is NOT just a physical state’ and if not just physical, and it is only our mind (and ok, maybe our soul) that can perceive moral implications of our actions, it is clearly that the Christians believe ‘Virginity IS INDEED ALSO a state of mind’.
I realized that I might have been approaching this statement from the wrong POV. There is some evidence that there are youths who JUST engage in oral and anal sex to MAINTAIN THEIR VIRGINITY. These youths have a narrow definition of what sex is – to them, oral and anal sex is NOT SEX because they aren’t losing their virginity doing it (i.e. the penis is not inserted into a vagina). In a way, their definition of sex is like Bill Clinton’s.
But I digress.
What this narrow definition of sex leads to is a state of mind where, although they are engaging in sexual activities, the youths think they are safe because they are, after all based on the traditional definition of virginity, still virgins.