Modern Athenas: Reckoning sapiosexuality


It’s getting old seeing the same faces slaying pageants, runways, fashion magazines, and Instagram posts glorifying beauty standards. Physical attractiveness has lost its touch, and so have the brawny biceps and toned stomachs that have taken over social media. Gone are the days when people went crazy over flawless faces and perfect physiques, as the future is here for those who are breaking the stigma of conforming to physical beauty.

Standardized dating is on its downfall, and the steps for intellectual revolution are now on the rise, led by people who prefer bare minds over naked bodies—the sapiosexuals.



Step 1: Undressing the mind

This generation’s getting rough, and as much as we refuse talking about sex, we can’t detach ourselves from our own pleasures. Although sex is already ingrained in our liberated culture, the best part of our body that needs to be satisfied isn’t underneath our clothes, but in our brains.

Good thing there are people who can stimulate our minds and crack philosophies and puns like no other, dubbed the “wanted intellectual convicts” by fact-checkers and grammar police—the sapiosexuals. Though this word has not yet been formally defined, “wolfieboy” on LiveJournal claims to be the first one who coined the word back in 1998. In 2002, “wolfieboy’ defined sapiosexuals as people who “want an incisive, inquisitive, insightful, irreverent mind, philosophical discussion is foreplay, and sometimes [being touched] due to someone’s wit and evil sense of humor.” For sapiosexuals, size does matter—no, not the size of whatever your green-mind is thinking; but the size of someone’s knowledge and how long someone’s scholarly stance can tease their parched minds.

The thing is, humans don’t have a collective standard for physical and sexual attractions and therefore the philosophy of “brains over looks” isn’t that strange at all. In scrutinizing the culture of sapiosexuality, Diana Raab, writer and transpersonal psychologist, expounds sapiosexuals as “those who are stimulated or challenged by the way another person thinks.” And incidentally, these people aren’t fighting with their keyboards using ad hominem and bigotry. Perhaps for sapiosexuals, the Law of Diminishing Marginal Utility doesn’t work for them, as their additional satisfaction infinitely increases as they meet someone who not only looks good, but thinks better than most.



Step 2: Breeding the brain

Intellectual insecurity exists because of one thing: diversity. We are marbles in various sizes bearing varying degrees of knowledge, creating various gaps among ourselves. As much as we want to detach someone’s worth from his or her intelligence, it seems unbearable to deal with ignorance rather than decoding complex social issues or theories.

When diverting to the idea of dealing with educated and knowledgeable people, a momentary nervousness strikes us in a way we unjustifiably lose our clarity. Men, especially when they’re interacting personally or in psychologically near situations, “distance themselves and show less interest in women who outsmart them,” a study [1] shows. In a society powered by the silly patriarchy that obliges men to pursue women, intimidation arises among men, especially in meeting standards set not only by women, but also by people’s mindset that objectifies almost everything.

On another note, sapiosexuals, at their simplest, are attracted to those who have wit and cleverness, regardless of their looks. Although being physically attractive doesn’t usually represent someone’s cognitive abilities, research [2] from London School of Economics shows a relevant association between physical attractiveness and general intelligence. Well, admittedly, face value counts, but for sapiosexuals, the notion of people suddenly bringing Immanuel Kant’s aesthetic and their relative political stance arouses them, much like ordinary people drooling over supermodels. For sapiosexuals, they only choose those who can think beyond the norm.



Step 3: Cleaning the sheets

We’re too overwhelmed with all these current political issues, but honestly, we don’t have any time tolerating those who were drowning in passivity. And perhaps this isn’t the best way to tell sapiosexuals to completely shut their mouths, as they themselves cannot withstand people patronizing hoaxes and fake news. To simplify: sapiosexuals are today’s modern heroes salvaging intellect and credibility and eradicating the immortality of mediocrity.

`Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, a Professor of Business Psychology at University College London, supports this information by stating that “curiosity is as important as intelligence [3], as higher Curiosity Quotient (CQ) gives more tolerance to ambiguity.” This is where sapiosexuals are winning—they never stop learning. Though IQ is not enough to defeat foolishness, it’s a vital tool to create a wider view of factuality.

Perhaps sapiosexuals are too attracted to those who have the same wavelength as them, because they see the potential in learning from these people, and that’s what’s essential in wiping out mediocrity—by continuously passing the torch of wisdom which preserves humanity.


In a globe condensed with a huge number of humans, once one coughs, it seems like everyone gets the flu, leading to an epidemic that can slowly kill the world—as much as ignorance spreads faster than the fact itself. One’s intellectual power is being measured not through someone’s knowledge alone, but based on how he or she can inspire and contribute to cure the world. Meeting someone is an opportunity to spread the knowledge and veracity to all, so before chasing after the “v” in veracity or the “d” in knowledge, remember to play with their mind first.

Art by Marco Belarmino