I love this topic. I love contemplating the connection between this openness where all polarities dissolve, and the realm of sexuality, full to the brim with hot and cold, dry and juicy, hard and soft, yes and no. Since I left the celibate ashram where I was a great failure at being celibate, I’ve had many people ask me for help in relation to sexuality. So the learning I’ve done, the research I’ve engaged in, has been a rich and surprising part of my life for the last ten years.
What I have discovered is a way of being sexual that is as radically different from our conditioned notions of sexuality as the nondual is from traditional spirituality. The parallels are quite striking. I don’t yet know what to call the kind of sex that I’ve been discovering. I don’t want to give it any fancy names or make it seem at all esoteric. So I’ll just call it slow sex.
Slow sex, like nondual practice, is effortless. When we engage in slow sex, we are not trying to get anywhere. When I look back at my lifelong spiritual practice, so full of striving, I see now that I was holding the idea of enlightenment or realization like a great big shiny object, an explosive experience that would deliver me into a place of no more self or struggle.
This feels quite humorous to me now, but it was deadly serious for many years. I can see that I made this whole self realization thing up, that it was my fantasy, and that it ruled my life. It was also supported by the culture I was a part of. Very similar to our whole culture around sexuality, and the way we have been mesmerized by the fantasy of the orgasm. The funny thing is, I did have enlightenment experiences, and they only left me wanting more. Kind of like the orgasm. Not ultimately fulfilling at all.
Slow sex is gentle, and it calls forth a deep sensitivity and presence in us. When we aren’t pumping and grinding our way toward the orgasm, every touch is received as profoundly erotic. I’ve worked with women who told me they discovered their whole body as an erogenous zone.
When we have orgasm as the goal, we can’t possibly open to the softest and most beautiful sensations. In fact, what I discovered is that the years of flailing wildly around often leave the body hardened and armoured, so that is very difficult to feel a lot, to open to the depth of sensation.
This doesn’t mean that orgasm doesn’t happen. It can, and it doesn’t need to. Or it happens in a way we never imagined it could. When we relax this deeply, we find that this tenderness, this slow and very sweet way of touching and loving each other makes each moment enough. There’s nothing more to ask for.
One of the most beautiful things has been what happens with the men. They have said things to me like, “I can hardly believe that I don’t have to perform anymore. I can just relax and enjoy this, without any pressure. Is this really possible? It’s like a whole new world.”
Isn’t this a lot like the nondual? The incredible freedom that reveals itself as soon as we take off all the pressure? As soon we we are ready to recognize what is already given?
This is such good news to me, this easy, gentle and loving way that men and women can be together. Some days I want to shout about it on the rooftops, especially to the men. I see them discovering their hearts in this way, laying down the addictions to porn, and coming to rest in an embrace that is bigger than both man and woman.
If we have confidence in the deep joy and pleasure that stream forth when we slow down and relax, we find such tenderness with each other. The toys and the drugs and the strutting and the posturing fall away, all by themselves. We aren’t afraid anymore of our inadequacy or our frigidity. In this new way of coming together, those terms have no meaning.
yes is a world
& in this world of
~ ee cummings
~ Shayla Wright — Nelson, Canada. www.barefootjourneys.net