Insight Course: Lesson 19
Image by Carol Schoenleber
Sexuality can be a vehicle into spirituality rather than
an obstacle to it. ~ Peter Rengel on sacred sexuality
Have you ever heard of sacred sexuality? We may be taught little about money in our world, yet we are given even less healthy information about how to deal with sexuality in a sexually obsessed culture. For many people, sex is even more seductive than money.
Our media, advertising, and entertainment industries are filled with subtle and not-so-subtle messages about sex. The underlying thrust is all about beauty, sexual desire, and how important it is to buy the products or operations which will make us popular, more attractive, and better lovers.
And even though advertising and entertainment are filled with sexual innuendo, it is rare that you will find anything other than tabloids and women's magazines talking openly about both the joys and challenges of sex. In many communities, homes, and workplaces, serious discussion of sexuality continues to be a taboo subject.
It is also extremely rare that any of society's many sexual messages even hints at sacred sexuality or the spiritual dimensions of sex. To those who have succumbed to all of these subliminal and overt messages, sacred sexuality might even seem like a contradiction in terms. Considering all of this, how can we transform sexual energy in our lives and in our world to better support the good of all of us?
Almost the opposite of societal conditioning, many of the world's religions imprint negative beliefs of sexuality in their followers. For thousands of years, these religions have considered sex to be a base and vulgar act.
Sexuality gets little mention in the sacred texts of Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. When it is mentioned, the suggestion is often to avoid it if possible in order to reach greater spiritual heights. Many monks and gurus also teach that we must refrain from sex in order to reach enlightenment.
Yet none of us would be here without sex. There is virtually no spiritual instruction in how to deal with sexual urges other than to abstain. As a result, many people experience a split between sexuality and spirituality in their lives.
For a powerful, yet deeply personal exploration of the sexual-spiritual split by a wonderful workshop facilitator who was willing to explore his own wounds with workshop participants, please read the engaging six-page story below.
The exciting news is that, as shown in the above essay, old paradigm beliefs and attitudes around sexuality are clearly changing. Homosexuality, bisexuality, and other sexual persuasions are gradually gaining more acceptance and support, even in the media.
Yet common misperceptions around all forms of sexuality continue to exist in many people and places, and very few have even considered the possibility that sexuality can be used to enhance spiritual growth.
While fully honoring and supporting those who choose to abstain from sex for spiritual reasons, for those who choose to include sexuality in their spiritual path, it is important to be open and real in discussing this powerful force and how it can be used to change our lives and world.
The term sacred sexuality is now being heard with increasing frequency in certain circles. Please read the below eye-opening article showing how old attitudes are gradually changing.
www.yesmagazine.org/article.asp?ID=931 - Sacred Sex
Sacred sexuality is often associated with tantra – a spiritual practice in which sexuality is used to achieve higher spiritual states. Though tantric sexuality was developed in India thousands of years ago, it is recently becoming popular in certain pioneering groups in this modern age.
The below article, while acknowledging those who choose a spiritual path of celibacy, describes some of the inspiring aspects of tantra or the art of spiritual lovemaking.
www.personalgrowthcourses.net/stories/re... - What is Spiritual Sex?
And for a couple short, inspiring essays on fostering spiritual intimacy in relationships, follow these links:
www.personalgrowthcourses.net/stories/brennan... - Intimate Relationships
www.personalgrowthcourses.net/stories/cousens.intimacy - On Intimacy
Remember that in matters of sacred sexuality, the energy or essence of the people involved is more important than the physical bodies they inhabit. The seven-minute video below beautifully demonstrates this:
Dear Human: You've got it all wrong. You didn't come here to master unconditional love. That is where you came from and where you'll return. You came here to learn personal love. Messy love. Sweaty love. Crazy love. Broken love. Whole love. Infused with divinity. Lived through the grace of stumbling. Demonstrated through the beauty of messing up. Often. You didn't come here to be perfect. You already are. You came here to be gorgeously human. Flawed and fabulous. And then to rise again into remembering. Love doesn't require the condition of perfection. It only asks that you show up. And do your best. That you stay present and feel fully. That you shine and fly and laugh and cry and hurt and heal and fall and get back up and play and work and live and die as YOU.
~ Courtney A. Walsh
To Complete Lesson 19 on Sacred Sexuality: Click Here