Osho once said (to paraphrase) that once men and women become completely integrated with their sexuality and develop and nurture a healthy relationship with their sexuality, there will no longer be any inequality between the sexes. By extension, this will mean there will no longer be any sexism, sexual harassment or sexual violence.
I deeply believe in the truth of this.
Although we’ve made amazing progress in recent decades in empowering women, including sexually empowering them, we still live in societies in which too much sexual power has been given to men.
A lot of this power comes from some very false and damaging narratives around men’s and women’s sexuality, many of which fuel sexism and result in the objectification of women.
The most prevalent narrative is one in which sex is portrayed as a power struggle. Women need to be give up something and men need to take something away. This leads to the notion that, for a man, having sex is about scoring, or about conquering, and that women need to be enticed to have sex, persuaded, pursued.
Now don’t get me wrong, a lot of women like to be courted, but we don’t like to feel like we’re someone’s prey. Men are not wolves, and we are not sheep.
If sex is perceived as a power struggle and the ultimate measure of manhood, then this feeds into the toxic viewpoint that women are no more than the sum of body parts that need to be squeezed or orifices that need to be entered.
However, the measure of a man is not how many women they have bedded and it’s definitely not about how much their sexual experiences look like what porn portrays sex to be.
Sex is about connection and intimacy – the sweet embrace of that which is intended for decay (as Thomas Mann would say, again paraphrasing).
It’s about human beings consciously and willingly deciding to be fully vulnerable and naked (in most cases literally) with each other. And it’s about human beings consciously and willingly deciding to experience profound pleasure and ecstasy and submit themselves to complete and utter surrender.
But in order for men, and women, to experience sex this way they need to eliminate all the unhealthy baggage that society has put on sexuality.
For men, sex and sexuality needs to be uncoupled from their sense of manhood and worthiness and instead be attached to their deepest sources of love, vulnerability and surrender.
Men need to come into a state where their sexual desire is harnessed in a healthy and integrated way and is aligned with their incredible capacities to love fiercely and deeply.
Men who are integrated with their sexuality in that way don’t get aggressive or offensive when a woman they feel attracted to rejects them. They accept that they can harness their sexual energy and use their turn-on to invigorate and enliven other parts of themselves and their lives and leave the encounter feeling grateful for the feminine sexual energy that they were allowed to feel. They can also admire a woman and her body in a respectful way, one in which she feels empowered, not unsafe and demeaned.
Men who are integrated with their sexuality don’t have an agenda and by extension help women feel safe to fully bloom in their own sexual expression, knowing that they will be honored and accepted without judgement or prejudice.
Men who are integrated with their sexuality recognize that they have a responsibility for their pleasure and that their pleasure is sacred, but not an entitlement.
And, interestingly enough, men who have an integrated and healthy relationship to their sexuality have an equally healthy relationship to their emotions. They neither suppress their emotions nor let emotions take over completely, but can meet their emotions fully grounded and in full alignment.
Oh, and did I mention that they have the capacity to receive and deliver exquisite and profound pleasure?
So how to come to this state of integration?
It actually starts with some very simple steps.
First off, recognize that everything you know about sex is probably wrong. So start with a blank slate and an open mind. Start by completely redefining sex. It’s not just about penetration and ejaculation (although that can be great too). It’s first and foremost about being fully present with another human being and allowing pleasure to come in whatever form it wants to come at that moment in time. This completely expands the range of experiences you can have with someone and the pleasure that you can feel.
Secondly, there needs to be an understanding that sexuality is an integral part of a healthy human ecology and, like other aspects of our ecology, it needs to be nurtured. If you take the time to eat healthy, to exercise, to nurture your spirit and mind, you also need to take the time to nurture your sexuality.
And yes, I do mean self-stimulation as a way of exploring your senses and accessing and moving your sexual energy.
And finally, accept that sex is not a race, nor a competition. You’re a human being not a racehorse. Linked to that, there’s no golden standard of the ultimate sexual experience. Porn is wrong and (spoiler alert) fake.
Real men deserve real sexual experiences. And so do women.
Sexism is caused by the falsehoods that we’re fed about what it means to be a man and, by extension, what it means to be a woman. One of these falsehoods is that relationships between men and women are a power struggle and sex is an instrument of power.
Sex is the only moment that our mammalian brains let go of fear and inhibition, and in which thought and emotions are suspended. This is why it allows for such deep connections, only if we allow it.
Being fully integrated in our sexuality allows us to experience our humanness and, in turn, see the humanness in another. Men and women see each other for what they are – humans, equal in their strive for connection.