From ancient times and within every culture, sexuality was considered Sacred; that is, because of all the capacities we as human beings can develop, the only thing capable of creating life is sexuality. We can witness how Sacred Sexuality was to our ancients by studying their cultures and the vast numbers of sexual rites found within them. To this day we can witness rites celebrating Sacred Sexuality within Romania, Japan, India, Scotland and other Celtic descendants as well as Spanish and French cultures; these are just to name a few.
Within these cultures sexuality is approach not as taboo but as something very natural, a part of life which is not denied but cherished, as it is a celebration of creation. Within all traditions and cultures; including religions; sexuality has been taken into consideration, perhaps not always as it is supposed to be, but despite the fact many have tried to hide the sacredness of sexuality, its power is just too great to be permanently concealed.
Within Celtic culture, we find the symbol of the triple Goddess (maiden, mother and crone) representing life and its stages; one usually finds her close to her consort Cernunnos (often confused with Pan or Baphomet). Due to ignorance on the subject, as well as lack of understanding of symbology and the mythology of the time, Cernunnos has often been confused with a demon whom is also confused and falsely equated with the devil (the two have very different origins and meanings). Cernunnos was the Celtic God mediator of man and nature; similarly Baphomet was the representation of man in its lower and higher natures and the process of Alchemy. In other words the God and Goddess were the representation of birth and transformation.
It is not only within the Celtic culture one can find such explicit examples, if we take a look at Roman culture, we can find many statues of the phallus to represent the honoring of Sacred Sexuality. Similarly in India, one can find tremendous evidence as to the reverence towards the Lingham (penis) and Yoni (vagina) for they are the physical instruments used to create and bring life to this world.
If we take a moment to inspect relics from the original cultures found in the Americas, we often come across figures of women with their legs spread, where their vagina is to represent a sacred doorway; as such females where held in high regard, not because they were better than men but because they are the doorway to the sacred. In Japan and China we find (specially in pure Taoism) a great focus on learning to use and properly channel the use of sexual energy instead of repressing it or abusing it–their focus was mostly on using the power of sexuality to prolong a healthy long life.
When we take a look at the middle ages, we look at many churches where we can find evidence of previous cultures and their reverence towards sexuality and its potentiality. As you can see no matter which corner of the world we look at, no matter how much the patriarchal system tried to hide it, distort or shame it, we can still witness the amazing reverence towards the power of sexuality. A power which was cherished, for it can help us transmute our own base Iron nature into Gold or illumination (alchemy in every aspect: physical, mental, spiritual and esoteric).
Sexuality offers us a communion with the divine and sacred, allowing us to be part of creation. As human beings we have the power to co-create or replicate the power of cosmological creation found within the primordial waters (as above so below).
Sexuality has been divided into two: One is Mundane Sexuality, with its objective being basic pleasure and procreation. The other is Sacred Sexuality where the objective is intense pure pleasure and Creation. In other words, sexuality can be use to create in either direction–one is mundane as it is expressed through procreation, the other is sacred as it is expressed through pure creation which means expansion of self (one direction is descending, while the other is ascending). The ascension of the wisdom serpent or kundalini, is the creation and expansion of a wiser, more integrated, internal life and the opening of doors of potential which previously were kept shut. Ancient teachings were not so focus on “how” exactly Sacred Sexuality works but rather how its power can help us discover and utilize our hidden potential and expand our level of consciousness.
In ancient Greece there was great focus on the rediscovering and practicing of even more ancient practices regarding Sacred Sexuality. There were sacred schools or schools of mysteries which among other things taught the beauty and power of Sacred Sexuality, referring to the alchemical process as the Alchemical Marriage or Sacred Marriage. Unlike religious views on what they believe is a sacred marriage (more a system meant to enslave and suppress one another), the Alchemical Sacred Marriage refers to the expansion of both people individually but also connected; using their connection to infuse more will to the desire of expansion and higher degrees of consciousness. These marriages where represented by the union of God and Goddesses which meant to represent the union of polarities (masculine/femenine) found in all creation.
Similarly, medieval alchemy, is a symbolical language to express internal realities and their connection with the sacred within and without; the difference is that it had to find a more obscure language than the ancients–this was mostly the result of having to endure the heavy punishments and persecutions set during the dark ages.
A couple of lovers who wish to use Sacred Sexuality, need to start understanding the power of subliminal energies found within their bodies and start using meditation and pranayama as basis steps towards the awakening of their esoteric body. Within dual cultivation one is referring to sexual excitement and exchange of polar energies which are used for expansion of consciousness.
In order to tap into the Sacred, we need to value the work needed; this does not mean negate pleasure, on the contrary pleasure will only grow–the difference is, pleasure won’t just be physical and mediocre but intense and expanding. The main focus on Sacred Sexuality is communion with the divine; something both lovers need to understand in order for it to work. If one partner is seeking to expand in consciousness, while the other simply wants release, this will only guarantee failure to practice Sacred Sexuality– depending on the energetic level the lovers have, the encounter can be damaging to one or both.
When we are to practice Sacred Sexuality, we are to submerge ourselves within the divine esoteric waters and internal temple–this means, we need to approach our body as the sacred temple and treat the body of our lover as another sacred temple, which will grant us the opportunity to experience great levels of pleasure, but only if one is willing to approach it as divine (to approach something as divine does not mean one has to restrict self when it comes to sexual practices, for that would only enslave one another–it means to come from the heart chakra). The objective is for both lovers to see each other’s bodies as sacred temples they are about to enter, knowing within each, lies divinity and they are about to experience it.
In Tantra there is also a focus on the external temple. Tantra understands the power of symbology as our subnconcious mind responds better to symbols and parables; as such, the external temple is the place where the divine union is to take place. The external temple does not have to be a specific place, so long as whatever place is used, is clean of clutter, with proper ventilation, aromas to awaken the senses and little touches which may be meaningful to both lovers and which may help keep the mind focused on the communion with the divine while experiencing higher degrees of pleasure. Personally I have an “altar” where I have the symbology that matters to me (air, fire, water, earth) among other symbols, which help me maintain focus on what I am doing, while the mirrors in the room help me submerge into the passionate yet illuminating encounter (mirror therapy is not just psychological but can also be use esoterically to awaken the senses and spirit).
The combination of a “divine” room, warmth (candles), ventilation, symbols, mirrors and the proper knowledge of meditation/breathing before, during and after the sexual union, is very powerful in aiding us to connect with our internal God or Goddess. As you can see, even the basic practice of Sacred Sexuality is a combination of all levels (physical, mental, esoteric and spiritual). Lastly but of extreme importance is personal hygiene; the discipline of personal and external hygiene is a great indicator as to where our mind and level of consciousness is at.
The above focuses more on the external preparation and can help us practice a more concious sexuality, now let’s look at the internal preparation to practice Sacred Sexuality….
As mentioned before connection with our light and shadow is imperative. One of the greatest tool to aid us is mediation, as it can help us reconnect with our center. However, to practice Sacred Sexuality, it means to seek to understand the alchemical process; as such, submerging in the studies of ancient alchemy specially focused on sexual alchemy is most beneficial. This can help you understand the forces within and outside your body, how they affect you and how to best utilize them ( I will write more about the alchemical dimension on part III of Sacred Sexuality).
Before our sexual union we can sit on the lotus position, connect the tip of the tongue with the roof of the mouth, squeeze the buttocks and then chant and rock the body, which can help us align the outer layers of energy which surrounds us. Obviously these rituals do not help expand our conciousness to the level of Sacred, if we are not working with our shadow nor are incorporating sexual alchemy in our lives.
During the beginning practice of Sacred Sexuality, lovers were taught the art of “Carezza”, which is to caress with intention–intention of connecting with the divine and intention of touching our lover as if one was touching the divine. As such, Carezza is not meant to be touching with the intention of mutual masturbation but with the intention of giving and receiving love while awakening the senses, and parts of our body which are mostly sleep.
Carezza warms up the body and spirit to the right degree–enough to connect, not enough to burn the intention ( a very small sample of sexual alchemy…“light the fire enough to keep the water warm, not enough to burn”). At that point the bodies are ready for conscious penetration (as you can see Sacred Sexuality can be playful, honoring yet divine, as it helps us expand our level of consciousness).
A big part of Sacred Sexuality is INTENTION. The intention needs to be at the forefront the whole time while the couple speaks the “Sacred Language” which is specific slow movements which the female does with her vagina and the male with his penis once they start the process of copulation or awakening. The Sacred Language is very important, for it maintains the tempo so that intention is not lost; for it can be easy to lose intention once penetration has occurred. Unlike common techniques used to delay orgasms (distracting the mind from the moment)–Sacred Language does not seek to distract the mind, on the contrary, it helps build the pleasurable sensations, but in a way that both people remain connected with one another and with their intention–this can make the sexual encounter very intoxicating and build a strong bond.
Greeks used to say; and it has proven accurate; that people who practice Sacred Sexuality develop a intensity in their gaze most cannot handle. It is not a play bunny/player type of look (after all, we are not talking about cheap tricks here)–it is a natural gaze which seems to pierce right through people’s souls, and which can be intimidating to some. The more you practice Sacred Sexuality, the more you access your inner power and the ability to read people by looking at their eyes. Sacred Sexuality then, is a great tool not only to help us integrate and expand but also to be able to peek through the window (eyes) of others into their soul, which can be a great gift to have.
When it comes to cultivating Sacred Sexuality, it is imperative to respect the other person. Sometimes people don’t want to practice it because they are not mentally and spiritually ready, they don’t care to or they lack the polar energies to be able to manifest (this has nothing to do with physicality, as we carry both currents within).
These polar vital energies could have already been drained or are in very short supply which will require the intention and desire to make the appropriate changes to help replenish energy and then the desire to expand by practicing first Conscious Sexuality and then Sacred Sexuality; if desired; for to force or manipulate someone into into it, will not only be of no benefit but also goes against the first principle of what is sacred….choice.