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NORASINGH

Dreamed 1987/1/15 by Chris Wayan


THAT EVENING

This last year has been a nonstop dating disaster. Rejections, crossed signals, bad luck and downright abuse--till it was almost comical. So just before sleep, I ask my dreams to tell me what to do next, what to change, so I can date successfully.

And I dream this:
Golden statue of a norasingh (a Thai guardian spirit, half-lion, half-human). Loosely based on a photo by M.B. Grosvenor.

I'm in Bangkok, sculpting a Norasingh in gold and stone. The Norasingh (or Narasingh) are graceful guardian-spirits, protecting the royal palace-temple in Thailand. When I was little, I saw photos of them in National Geographic, and felt an instant affinity. They're usually depicted as half-man, half-lion, being an aspect of Vishnu the Preserver, but in my version, Nora is a lioness-girl, with a sweet Buddha smile and a stupa-like crown of gold, human hands clasped palm to palm in prayer, bare breasts, a warrior's kilt and ceremonial dagger, and long antelopy lion-legs, with a flamboyant lion-tail sweeping down then rearing proudly, with a flat, flamelike tip, like a medieval halberd.

Like the Palace originals, my Nora is stone inside, but gold-leaf-skinned... So sleek and shining! Yes, I admit it. I'm turned on by my creation.

But you can't love stone.

So I redo Nora in fiberglass, plastic and wood, making her hollow, and a little flexible, and light as a living girl. "Falling for images is stupid!" I tell myself... but I am. Falling in love with a fantasy.

A Tibetan lama comes to view the statue. He's no unworldly saint, but a crude old man, and I feel naked before his knowing gaze. He grins at me, and I blush, and then to my astonishment he says "You're not as crazy as you think, young man."

"But I want to love a real woman, not an image!"

Yet I work on, ashamed of myself, as he watches: fashioning crystal eyes, and finally, though I blush for shame, crafting a vagina, lined with a wax that's be stable at room temperature but will soften with the heat of sex. The old man says "Wax is better than wood is better than stone... but it's not good enough. You need something more elastic and stable." I experiment with plastics and resins...

After some hours of watching in silence, he adds "You can't wait till the image of your love is perfect." And leaves.

Alone at last, I take off my clothes and guiltily sidle up to this image I've created--as if she might see and disapprove, this gold, praying lion-girl! "She's just a sex-doll" I think in shame, and, closing my eyes at first, I embrace the Norasingh. Sliding against her cool smooth golden belly almost instantly gets my heart pounding and my cock hard. Despite my shame.

But as I slip inside this mythical beast's artificial cunt, something happens. A shiver in the air, and colors shudder around us... energy from somewhere.

And then the door to my studio opens, though I'd locked it, and the crazy old man re-enters!

I yelp in horror and shame... but without a word, just that rotten-toothed grin, he runs over to us, the Norasingh and I, stuck together... and... LIFTS US UP, as if we're BOTH weightless dolls!

Compared to his brute solidity, perhaps we are.

He carries us out and stands us like store-mannequins in the back of a wooden cart. I'm naked in a Bangkok marketplace, fucking a statue of a mythical monster, for all to see... and yet... I can't stop.

The tantric field spreads from the Norasingh to the cart, and it rocks like a boat and LIFTS, bobbing in the air! He hops in the front and flicks faint reins of light, and suddenly we're zooming like a hovercraft above the market-streets, and then roads and rice fields, banking and swerving around crumbling temples. He calls back to me "You're summoning the Norasingh spirit... keep it up!" A dirty old man full of bad puns. But I HAVE kept it up: despite my embarrassment, I'm hotter and harder than ever, for I can feel energy settling inside my lion-girl like bees swarming to a new golden hive. Nora still doesn't move, she's still artificial, but I sense a spirit growing in her now. The lama's right!

He calls back over the rising wind of our passage, "The more real you treat her image, the realer she becomes, her spirit comes closer, and the faster we'll go!" We're zooming above the ground now, cupped by a nimbus of glowing yellow, white, and rose... I kiss Nora's golden lips and shove deep into her, this sex-doll-monster coming alive, and the aura around us flushes hotter, magenta-white.

That mad old man steers us right at a small temple and I panic, and then in a swoop the cart leaps the dome in a bell-curve like Borobudur! We can almost fly like a plane, now.

Dream: a mad yogi flies a red magic cart over Thai temples, carrying me and a Norasingh, a golden lion-woman.

He turns and leers at me, yelling over the wind-roar "There are TWO ways to fuck her!" but I don't understand--I only sculpted a vagina. Oral or anal sex is impossible. Then I realize I'm thinking of Nora only as human; and fucking her from the front, face-to-face... but Nora is a Norasingh, half-lioness, and lions mate from behind. I'm ignoring the animal half of her spirit! She may be flexible enough now to lift her tail and let me in... as a lion.

What will happen when we mate as lions, too? When that side of her spirit is summoned, who knows how we'll fly?

NOTES, ON WAKING

As a kid, when I saw the golden statues of the Norasingh (National Geographic's spelling; other sources use Nara-), I sensed a powerful aura of benevolence... but also a gentleness I didn't associate with American men. Perhaps that's why I always I took the Norasingh to be female, though the magazine referred to them as male. Still, both Hindu and Tibetan Buddhist divinities usually can manifest as either sex.

As well as its obvious Tantric tinges, the dream also may be alluding to Garuda, the bird-chariot of Indra. Indeed, I wonder now if that appalling old man was Indra himself, luring me into the god-realm...

What astonishes me is how emphatically the dream insisted I create my own fantasy, summoning and materializing the fabulous creature of my desires. It rejects mainstream Buddhism, which urges you to endeavor to see through and transcend your desire, and also Western modernism, which urges you to abandon animism and superstition in favor of what it calls the reality principle...

But that mad old man insisted I make love to the impossible, the artificial, the ridiculous.

Make a fool of myself.

Make something out of nothing.

And fly.

A FOOTNOTE TWO DAYS LATER

At an animation festival, I see "Second Class Mail" by Alison Snowden, about a woman who orders an inflatable male sex doll. But rather than using him as a toy, she dresses and treats him as real--chats with him, has tea... Like me in the dream, she reverses the usual gender we expect for this type of doll, and acts out her fantasies--her real desires. Curiously embarrassing fantasies--not because they're sexual, but precisely because they're not, really.

They're about love.



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