I enjoyed your response to a question
on sex in a previous issue. As a person who has just completed
a year of marriage, I would like to have some tips on how
to keep our sex life juicy and alive.
A. As we see, sexuality goes downhill when hearts close,
power struggles emerge and touch stops. Let's take it one
at a time.
In loving sexual intercourse, genitals and hearts are very
closely interrelated; closure in one area inevitably leads
to closure in the other. In order to visualize the connection,
a conceptualization borrowed from a Tantric teacher, Charles
Muir of Hawaii can be useful. Try considering the penis as
positively charged, the vagina as negatively charged, the
woman's heart as positively charged and the man's heart as
negatively charged. The terms positive and negative have nothing
to do with human values. A positive charge has to do with
sending out energy and a negative charge with receiving energy.
Imagine the energy flowing from the man's penis towards the
woman's vagina. When her vagina is open and receives energy
the woman's body becomes more alive. Energy travels to her
heart. More energy is available in her heart and she broadcasts
energy out from there. The man's heart (if open) takes in
energy and his body becomes more alive. The heightened energy
travels in his body, activating genitals, and the woman's
vagina receives even more energy. And around it goes, energy
cycling, both partners becoming more energized, nourished,
and alive. None of the four points (two genitals, two hearts)
is the origin of energy, but a closure at any one of them
can break the circuit.
For example a man whose energy is blocked at his genitals
experiences impotence or fast ejaculation. Or a woman's vagina
closes down and sex stops there. When this happens it usually
attracts a lot of attention, particularly in the person whose
genitals have gone numb! It is important to track down the
cause for the closure and there is no shortage of materials
to consult in this area. In many relationships however, sexual
breakdown is more of a gradual process. Over time the energy
flow diminishes without partners really understanding why.
In these situations it is important to look at what is happening
in the hearts, because in a committed relationship, heart
closures are just as deadening to sex as genital closures.
What keeps a heart open? For a woman it's usually talk, touch,
demonstration of caring, appreciation and movement of feelings.
For a man it's often touch, caring, appreciation and being
deeply received sexually. When partners stop paying attention
to these needs in the other, the outcome is always hazardous
to their sex life.
Striving for power is also hazardous to sexual enjoyment.
In the world outside their relationship, partners strive for
power, exhaust themselves and end up over-stressed. In order
to keep sex juicy in marriage, partners simply have to find
ways to boundary work time.
It gets more complicated when partners power struggle against
each other. This is a real sex killer. One of the classic
power struggles around sex occurs when a woman expects a man
to approach sex like she does and a man expects a woman to
approach sex like he does. Crudely translated, she implicitly
says she wants a heart (feeling) connection before a genital
connection and he implicitly says he wants a genital connection
before a heart connection. And each wants the other to come
Using our energy circuit conceptualization, we can see what
a total waste of effort this is. In order to complete and
sustain the sexual energy circuit between a man and a woman,
both heart connection and genital connection are necessary.
Partners have to wake up to their power struggling long enough
to check into what is going on inside themselves.
Underneath power struggles between the opposite sex are usually
feelings of fear of being over-powered by the other. If both
individuals were willing to be vulnerable (and honest) enough
to locate and express some of their true feelings, power struggling
drops away. The exchange of honest feelings also serves to
open the hearts. As the hearts opens, sexuality opens and
the whole experience builds on itself -but it needs two individuals
who are willing to go inside and reveal their inner selves
to each other. Easily said but not so easily done.
In order to keep sex alive, we believe couples need to incorporate
a regular regimen of touch, a significant portion of which
is nonsexual. When touch is only associated with the intensity
of sexual intercourse, the body eventually learns to tense
up when touched. Partners who touch and are touched only sparingly
end up over-reacting or under-reacting to it. All it takes
is a commitment to touch each other 10 minutes a day, every
Feelings, power issues and touch are not all that difficult
to keep up with if the intent is firmly established by both
partners and decisions are made to follow through. Sadly,
a lot of people don't seem to be willing to make this kind
of effort and wonder why a dry relationship has crept up on
them. We applaud your willingness to look ahead and wish you
a long and happy sex life.