Let’s Talk About Sex
My goal with this post is to shed some light on what sex is meant to be, spiritually speaking, aside from just being a tool for experience and a means to an end.
Sex Miseducation: Our Egoic Idea of True Love
Sex is probably one of, if not the most misunderstood, taboo subjects on the planet in our current culture. So many people have shame and discomfort around sex and many of us aren’t even completely aware of it. Culturally, we still see sex as a form of ownership.
You see, you can never truly own the emotions of another person. You can’t stop them from loving another person. And in our society, our patriarchal notion of love is that we should reserve all of our deepest, most intimate love for a single person. If we discover that our significant other may love another, we automatically assume that means that they have taken their love away from us. But that’s the egoic notion of love, not real, unconditional love.
So because we can never truly be certain that the emotion of love is totally reserved for us, we look for other ways to control our partner. We can’t be sure that we own their heart, so we then attempt to own their body. And that’s the kind of limiting culture our society has built around love and sex.
- Sex is “dirty” or morally wrong unless it’s done within the confines of a committed (married) relationship.
- Sex is something that should only happen behind closed doors, in the dark and is not to be discussed publicly.
- Sex is an earthly activity that we engage in strictly as an incarnate experience with no higher spiritual value.
- Sex really only exists for the purposes of procreation and should not be enjoyed.
These stigmas all arise from what we are taught about our bodies and about sex from a very early age and they are so pervasive in our Judeo-Christian culture that it takes a great amount of self-awareness to even realize that we all have hangups about it.
Sex As An Expression of Love
The truth of Love with a capital L –the kind of love that we talk about as being the foundation of the universe–is that its limitless. And when love is felt from its truest essence, it flows forth unending. That kind of love is not jealous, it does not attempt to “own,” and it expresses itself in every way–ways that don’t fit within the box that our culture has built for it. And that makes us uncomfortable, so we struggle for control over it.
True love only gives of itself. It does not demand reciprocation. It has no expectations. It is love for the sake of love. And sex can be the physical expression of that.
First, let’s talk about sexual energy, because it is an energy in and of itself. It’s the creative driving force of the universe. It’s not called The Big Bang for nothing. 🙂 Our existence was spawned by a big cosmic orgasm.
Yes, I said ORGASM. Does that make you uncomfortable? How about penis? Vagina? Maude Lebowski has some provocative commentary for you:
The commonly held notion of spirituality entails fluffy things like love and light and enlightenment. Not sex. However, sex is not completely different than love and light and spiritual understanding. Sexual energy is, more or less, the fabric of the universe. Its creation itself.
Kundalini, in yogic theory, is a primal energy, or shakti, located at the base of the spine.
In other cultures, this concept is known as:
- Ka (Egypt)
- Chi/Qi (China [Tao])
- Ki (Japan)
- Prana (Hindu)
- Pneuma (Greece)
- Mana (Polynesia)
- Ruah (Hebrew)
It’s our basic spiritual essence. (Side note: For a spectacular, in-depth description of the chakra system and how it’s interrelated to your personal psyche, I highly recommend Eastern Body, Western Mind by Anodea Judith.)
Through meditation, one practices raising Kundalini through each chakra to obtain spiritual awakening. Kundalini is not separate from sexual energy. It’s why many meditation practitioners experience intense sexual energy during meditation and even prolonged orgasm. That’s also an experience of Tantric sex–achieving spiritual experience by raising kundalini through prolonged sexual contact.
As part of our patriarchal conditioning, many of us believe sex doesn’t belong with spirituality because we have placed morality around it (mostly thanks to our puritanical religious roots). Our cultural belief is that moral sex can only exist where there is love, we can only love one person at a time, and to have sex otherwise is immoral.
The problem (aside from moral relativism) is that everything is love. The entire universe is love. So there can never be sex that exists outside of it. You can’t separate love energy from sexual energy because they are one and the same. Where humans fuck up is their belief that sex is just sex and nothing more and they create walls and blockages that prevent them from experiencing love, resulting in meaningless sex, which prevents us from using sex as an avenue for spiritual experience.
Maude Lebowski is quite right about another aspect of our current culture:
“There are some people…who engage in [sex] compulsively and without joy…Oh yes, Mr. Lebowski. These unfortunate souls cannot love in the true sense of the word. “
Of course, what Maude is talking about is the most extreme case of emotional blockages around sex, where sex is thought of as a mere animalistic compulsion purely for physical benefit and without emotional connection.
There’s a very large percentage of people in our culture who are engaging in sex under varying degrees of emotional numbness. These folks are on the opposite end of the spectrum from the Puritans: engaging in meaningless causal sex, confusing physical connection with emotional intimacy, using sex as a form of escape, a way to feed their egos and to validate themselves. Emotional intimacy and vulnerability never enter the equation.
The rise of sex positivity in our culture was meant to counteract puritanical influence in our society, but where there’s repression, all of the darkness that’s being repressed has to be transmuted. Instead of normalizing healthy sex, there’s a large subset of sex positive culture that is attempting to normalize and even glorify the dysfunction inherent in unhealthy, disconnected sex.
I myself identify as polyamorous, but I’ve discovered that I’m an outlier in the poly community, particularly in New York City where it’s more about satisfying sexual fetishes and ordering up group sex for delivery on Tinder like takeout than it is about going deep within intimate relationships. This kind of lifestyle barely scratches the surface of love and connection. I also identify as demisexual, and most humans in the poly community that I’ve met are simply not evolved enough achieve the kind of deep connection I need, and as I said before, many of them don’t know the difference between physical connection and emotional intimacy anyway, because they’ve never truly experienced the latter.
How do you know when you’ve crossed the line from healthy sex into unhealthy sex? At the point where sex is used as a distraction from yourself, your problems, or the world around you rather than a vehicle for the physical expression of the connection that you have for the person you’re having sex with. That’s a subtle line, but one that can be sussed out by honestly answering a few questions:
- What is my motive? Am I mostly concerned with myself, my own pleasure, having a new experience, and satisfying my own desires? Am I concerned with what I am able to give the other person? Are our needs and desires balanced?
- What are the expectations of the other person from this situation? Have you even had that conversation? If you truly respect the person you’re about to have sex with, you’ll have a conversation with them about your expectations and talk about what kind of experience they are looking to have before engaging in it. This is why it’s called “conscious” sex. Both parties are aware of the situation they are entering into, as well as themselves and one another.
- And the biggest question of all: do I truly trust this person with my most intimate self? Do I truly trust this person to have power over me (sex is a power dynamic)? Without trust, there’s not a complete connection. A lack of trust is your intuition’s way of alerting you that there’s something energetically not right about the person or the situation. Are you even comfortable asking for what you need from that person to trust them? If not, then you have boundary issues and I don’t recommend engaging in this kind of situation. If you are comfortable asking that person for what you need, and they balk at your request, then you can also safely assess that they were not the right person to be having sex with. A truly mature individual will always be receptive to, “You know what I would need to feel safe and trust you more?”
The Sex Connection, Or Lack Thereof
Very rarely do we engage in sex for the purpose of connecting with our divine selves, connecting with the divine in each other, or connecting with the divine in the entire universe around us. Mostly our motivations are to simply give and receive physical pleasure. How much are we missing out on?!
To some degree, we are unable to use sex for this purpose because of all of the baggage that we and our partners carry–not just around sex itself and our own personal relationship with it, but our personal relationship with ourself.
You may be aware of what a chakra is and how those energy centers become blocked with negative energies resultant from various emotional experiences (fear energy resultant from trauma) throughout our lives that haven’t been released.
These blockages cause us to put up walls around us to protect ourselves from being hurt by other people. They also protect us from ourselves, because we have this perception that there is something inherently flawed about us, and many times that creates more pain for us and rather than deal with it, we shove it away and create a false persona.
Instead of opening ourselves up and being vulnerable and comfortable in who we really are, we put on this suit of armor, usually a form of attitude, to protect ourselves; to allow us to be someone else, anyone else, that we perceive to be better or stronger than who we really are.
Our inability to be vulnerable with ourselves directly impacts our ability to be vulnerable with someone else. The armor never comes off, even when we’re naked. We only allow ourselves to connect with our partner at the most basic levels, never achieving true trust and thus, true intimacy.
How can you tell if you’re hiding behind emotional armor? Ask yourself how many deep dark secrets you carry that you would be unwilling to discuss with your significant other.
I don’t mean that you should talk about absolutely everything with your partner, because that’s part of having your own identity. But would you be comfortable talking about absolutely anything, particularly things that have to do with who you are at the deepest level and how you feel? If the answer is no, then you know you’ve got some barriers to break down.
Part 1 | Part 2
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