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A close-up of a newly opened delphinium flower (Summer 2013).

Friday, December 10, 2010

A Philosophy of Sex and Love (For Adults Only)

Between lovers, sex is not separate from whatever is happening in their inner landscape. The sexual aspect is present when lovers cuddle in the morning, their legs intertwine in unspoken care; it is shown in the hours that a wife spends in cooking her husband’s favorite meal; it is expressed when a husband brings pink roses to his wife to surprise her; it is found in little flirtations and jealousies scattered silently, in the aches felt by lovers who are separated by distance, in the excitement of a kiss or in the slow pleasure of lovemaking.
There is no meaning and fulfillment in sex without the presence of love. Love must be in attendance for bodies in conjunction to experience real ecstasy. Love must lend fire to caresses and kisses—it heats up the loins and accompanies the undulating bodies in their desire for oneness, pleasure being its path. According to Sam Keen, “We get to the essence of sex faster with love than when we get to the essence of love by starting with sex.” If we start with sex in our quest for intimacy, it will be difficult to go back to the route of care, commitment, responsibility, compassion, and tenderness. But if consider first the elements of love, sex becomes the deepest expression of one’s essential self. It is a gift we bring to the beloved in the wonders of our bodily contours, wetness, and hardness amidst pants and moans. In this context, sex is the physical expression of our soulish nature where the other’s pleasure becomes as important as ours because we love. Sex is therefore not the end but the means towards fulfillment, intimacy and unity.  In love, sex becomes sensuous and erotic.
When does sex become sensuous and erotic? When at first there is love. You don’t choose to be sensuous and erotic but rather you become sensuous and erotic the moment you love. It doesn’t happen right away. It is a gradual awakening, a slow impulse, and a flicker that slowly ignites until it becomes fire. You become sensuous and erotic when your love takes on wings even if there isn’t any wind to make you fly. You become sensuous and erotic when your days and nights are interspersed with thoughts of your beloved, your senses flooding you with sexual yearnings because you love. You become sensuous and erotic when desires mingle with feelings of tenderness, when lovemaking is truly a celebration of love, and when, in the afterglow, love becomes immensely glorious like a spiritual conquest dotted with bouquets of languid kisses.
What does it mean to be sensuous? It is the exquisite sensation of love rippling through your bones and flesh. It is an aphrodisiac that liquefies the unbending to become yielding, the soft to become hard, and the dry to become wet. Sensuousness is a gift of the spirit that makes the heart quiver, makes the body tremble, making the lovers catch glimpses of the sacred in the profane, eternity in temporality. To be sensuous is to feel a heightened sense of touch, taste, sound, scent, and texture. This heightened sense is brought about by your acute awareness of the wonders of the other as a person.  To be sensuous is to be a lover in the truest sense of the word—to be a loving human being.
What does it mean to be erotic? It is to become carnal in love. It is giving desire to your love, making love aflame without pain. It is a loving surrender to the throbbing of organs paving the way for rapture. The erotic is the longing you feel for the beloved, like a subtle yet steady cadence of a waterfall. It is the thirst for the many ways of pleasure in the miracle of the body of the person whom you love. It is pleasure accompanied by care, commitment, responsibility, compassion, and tenderness.
There is no sexual technique, practice, or wisdom to be learned other than what is involved in mastering how to love. There is no greater aphrodisiac than love itself. No sex toy could ever replace the pleasure that the beloved’s body could bring. The best way to become a good sexual partner is to focus on becoming a loving human being. One has to pay attention, listen, empathize, be compassionate, and be sensual if he wants to become a good sexual partner.  Nothing more, nothing less.
There are men and women who have mastered the craft of sex. They know the different sexual positions, know just the right pressure, the right touch, and the right words to say. They are the best sexual performers similar to the great acrobats in circuses. But performance for the sake of pleasure is without self-revelation, awe, or spiritual vulnerability. In contrast, sincere lovers may remain amateur in the art of sex yet their lovemaking transport them to the world of the enchantment, where their hesitations become wordless desire, where their shyness brings more allure, where their inexperience becomes love’s liquid fire.

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