Serendip is an independent site partnering with faculty at multiple colleges and universities around the world. Happy exploring!

REMIX: Analysis of Drills & Charismatic Acts on Sexual Behavior

Shayna or Sheness Israel's picture

I. Introduction:

Based on the premise that a significant perturbation of a interconnection pattern of neurons can reconfigure particular neurons and neuron connections (i.e. behavior), I argue that there are two methods of changing sexual desire more effectively than medicinal treatment due to their effect on significantly altering the pattern of one’s behavior in possibly permanent ways. These methods are the conscious performance of drills on a regular basis and what I term charismatic acts.

According to various research cited here, one can alter sexual desire through the effects of taking prescription medicine or receiving chemical stimuli. Some drugs include LibidusTM Dietary Supplement, which claims to enhance blood flow to the penis as well as boost testosterone levels, and Erostat™, which claims to increase sexual pleasure, vaginal moisture, and intensity of orgasm in women. There are other scientifically researched chemicals that may increase sexual desire, attraction, and arousal— namely pheromones, andostadienone, and dopamine.

As important as biochemistry has been in delineating what can alter sexual desires/attractions, it has its limits. There are no known drugs that can permanently change sexual attraction and alter one’s sexual desire or even last a couple of days without taking further dosages. This is where culture, practice, and subjective choice come into play. Adding in environmental and nurture factors can help better illuminate how one can truly change sexual desire, attraction, and even orientation. The researchers below use an interdisciplinary approach to their scientific research and studies such as incorporating sexual script theory into their studies and hypotheses.

II. How Culture Affects Sexual Desire/ Sexual Scripts Theory

Sexual scripts, as defined by Dworkin and O’Sullivan, are mutually shared conventions that guide actors to enact in sexual situation interdependently and are composed of three realms that includes the interrelationship between cultural scenarios, interpersonal scripts, and intrapsychic scripts (Dworkin:2005:150). Cultural scenarios include norms and normative orientations that shape and direct sexual behavior. They “help to determine the details (who, what, where, when, why, and how) of sexual interactions; interpersonal scripts includes the subjective and individual processing of norms, personal experiences, socialization, and motives that shape action in the sexual sphere (Dworkin:2005:150); and the intrapsychic scripts are the processors that meditate between the cultural and interpersonal scripts that can “construct the domain of one’s own desires and fantasies” (Dworkin:2005:150).

It is important to include the influence of norms into the discussion of sexual desire and attraction because consciously, one can be unaware of the effects of culture and society on sexual desire/attraction just as much as they are unaware of the biochemical processes that influence them.

In a second study by Mark Spiering and associates (2006) that uses sexual script theory to talk about the unconscious recognition of a stimulus as sexual, states that activation of sexual response may be largely determined by nonconscious cognitive processing (Spiering:2006:268). Yet, they also state that this recognition process seems unrelated to the potential of the stimulus to elicit subjective arousal (Spiering:2006:268). This shows that the individual awareness and consciousness is critical in having an explicit external reaction as well as it shows that the consciousness is not necessary to have a reaction. The nonconscious cognitive processing to which they are referring is affected by cultural norms and interpersonal scripts. If we think of sexual action or even the activation of sexual desire/attraction as a pattern of actions across and within neurons then cultural, interpersonal, and personal sexual scripts potentially can and do reconfigure centrally generated patterns which are the interconnection of neurons signaling to one another with action potentials. This centrally generated pattern does not necessitate consciousness while also having powerful and lasting effect on one’s consciousness, experience, and explicit external behavior.

Since culture and personal preference are considered transitive and constructed, it is possible to recode someone’s sexual attraction, desire, or even orientation. That does not mean that one will not face adversity and failure in attempting this recoding for when one internalizes a belief or way of life, she will usual tend to defend it as strongly as she will defend her life. That is the powerful affect of culture and your mind. Furthermore, I also recognize how one’s own influence on the reconstruction and reification of her desires, attraction, and orientations can further inhibit a new recoding process as well as recognize the fact that for something to be recoded or reconstructed, something coded had to first exist to be altered.

III. How Drills Can Affect Sexual Scripts

Many disciplines characterize culture generally as practice which is legitimated and reified through routine—everyday practice—and ritual—extraordinary practice. Dworkin and O’Sullivan write: “It is here that repeated enactment of interpersonal and cultural codes also shapes individual beliefs and values in sexual scenarios, providing a link between broader societal-level scripts and the interpersonal realm” (Dworkin:2005:150). Here she highlights the importance of routine and reenactment in the construction of scripts. Following this I argue that drills, which I define as specifically focused repeated action towards a defined goal, can be used to reconfigure sexual desire/attraction to a more intensified degree than culture due to high levels of focused and directed energy and due to the fact that engaging into the performance of drills requires conscious behavior and agreement while making the most significant recoding in the subconscious and/or particular interconnection patterns of neurons.

IV. Charismatic Acts & Thoughts

According to Weber, charismatic movements carry in them revolutionary potential for any given society (Weber:1947:64) . That can mean a society who has been reacting to traditional codes which get conveyed through routine and ritual can change and adopt different or even contradictory traditional codes. A charismatic movement has a charismatic leader who begins to perturb the status quo and reconfigures the people minds to follow her. I borrow Weber’s concept of a charismatic movement to create a charismatic act which can change ingrained behavior—such as culturally ingrained sexual behavior. Charismatic acts are initiated through charismatic thoughts that remove inhibitors to allow one to commit an act that has the potential to shock neurons with enough force, that they can rearrange the patterns of action potentials to now orient a person to commit more of the once charismatic act. An example that comes to my mind is kissing a woman for the first time. For me, kissing a woman for the first time represented, a charismatic act because it made me realize that I truly desired and was attracted to women. It was initiated by a two charismatic thoughts: One, where I all of a sudden looked at a woman and consciously recognized that I had a mental sexual image of her, and two, later that week I had a dream about making love to a random woman in a bathroom stall. That caused me to easily remove my inhibitions during the time when I had the opportunity to kiss a woman. When I did, I felt my whole world change—which probably was many neurons in my centrally generated pattern reconfiguring in one instant. I have not stopped kissing women since.


In conclusion, I have argued that the conscious performance of drills and charismatic acts are significantly more effective than medicine is and may ever be in potentially reconfiguring the interconnection pattern of neurons that signal action potentials to create sexual desire/attraction. This conclusion takes into account the influence of genetics, biochemical processes, individual will, and existing norms as counter-effects on recoding sexual behavior in a particular direction, especially if that direction is in deviation or is differentiated from existing norms and sexual scripts.




CNN. 2007. “For Women, Nothing’s Like the Smell of Men’s Sweat” Copyrighted 2007 Reuters

Retrieved February 26, 2007


CNN. 2007. “Loving with All Your…Brain.” Copyrighted 2007 Reuters

Retrieved February 26, 2007


CNN. 1999. “Pheromones: Potential Participants in Your Sex Life” Copyrighted 1999 WebWD

Retrieved February 26, 2007

CNN. 2007. “Study Finds Out Why It’s Gross to Kiss Your Sister.” Copyrighted 2007 Reuters

Retrieved February 26, 2007


Dworkin, Shari L, Lucia O’ Sullivan. 2005. “Actual Versus Desired Initiation Patterns Among

a Sample of College Men: Tapping Disjunctions Within Traditional Male Sexual Scripts.” The Journal of Sex Research vol. 42: num. 2: 150-158

Spiering Mark., Walter Everaerd, Petra Karsdorp, and Stephanie Both. 2006. “Nonconscious

Processing of Sexual Information: A Generalization to Women.” The Journal of Sex Research vol 43: num. 3: 268-281

Weber, Max. 1947. The Theory of Social and Economic Organization. New York, NY: The Free




Remix-Drills and Charismatic Acts.doc41.5 KB


AnonymousTom's picture

Beyond acts that establish Sexual Behavior to egnetic memory.

Can I say that because, "a significant perturbation of a interconnection pattern of neurons can reconfigure particular neurons and neuron connections", RESULTING in "(i.e. behavior)", that BEHAVIOR will alter inherited particular neurons and neuron connections?

I feel the answer is, "yes", but only have statistics of reported behavioral traits that mimic their parents and not explained by learning, as with babies separated from mothers at birth, adopted, never reunited with biological parent(s) who behave like the mother's NEWLY LEARNED behavior.

Your consideration of this and answer will be greatly appreciated. Thank you, AnonymousTom