Have you ever had the feeling that there must be more to sex?
Have you approached sex with a delicious sense of anticipation that something mysterious and wild awaits, a place in which you can be most truly and deeply yourself, a kind of home-coming of connection with all that is? A place of almost unbearable excitement, pleasure and passion. A sense of something profoundly and very simply right?
… and then been left disappointed by the 10 minutes of semi-ritualized kissing, fondling and thrusting that follows, the same predictable orgasm (or not) arrived at in the same predictable way… left with a sense of the promise of a place you yearn for but never quite get to?
Your intuition is right. Your knowing is right. There are unlimited landscapes of possibility in sex. From the simplest, most loving, Earth-shatteringly intimate heart connection with our partner to realms of ecstatic experience outside of our everyday understanding and language.
Sex is important, it matters. Sex has unparalleled documented health benefits from reduction of pain to lowered blood pressure and improved immune system function, just to name a few. Touching, stroking, kissing, eye gazing and orgasm all release a cascade of hormones that promote bonding, create feelings of love and trust, relax us and make us happy. All the while forming powerful neuro-associations of all these good feelings with our partner. Very many spiritual traditions have had esoteric spiritual sexual teachings and a wealth of wisdom relating to sex as a path to knowledge, enlightenment, communion with the Divine.
Unfortunately for many of us, our sexuality is far from simple, and is often a cause of distress, particularly in relationships. Relationships can be under strain due to differences in desire levels, frequency needs, sexual style and tastes, need for variety, unhealed sexual trauma, exhaustion, lack of time, poor communication, emotional disconnection, fear of the unknown, or simple boredom.
Basically what occurs in the rest of the relationship is likely to impact sex and what occurs in sex will impact the rest of the relationship, one way or another.
So how can we navigate all this?
In his well-known research on why some relationships last while others end, John Gottman says of sex “The issue isn’t how frequently you make love… The issue is how well you handle the inevitable differences that arise whenever two people form a partnership.”
This sexuality course is about understanding and embracing ourselves as sexual beings, as well as learning the skills to handle these differences that arise between people; all in a spirit of respect for sex, taking pleasure in this gift that sex is and finding ways to restore that pleasure where it has been absent. We will honour our tender hearts and our desire for deep connection as well as our passion and our erotic natures, so that we can be full and whole people, for ourselves and with one another.