Tantra recognizes that the biggest reservoir of potential energy accessible for the human being who wants to realize his spiritual nature is the sexual energy. Instead of fighting against it and suppressing it, Tantra teaches us how to use it wisely. The art of Sexual Continence implies the fully conscious control over the sexual functions; to make love but without ejaculation or any explosive discharge in the man or woman. This allows us to attain an endless number of orgasms by both lovers (at the same time or separately).
In the Yogic tradition one of the five fundamental moral virtues to be cultivated on the path of spiritual transformation is called Brahmacharya. This implies control, temperance, self restraint in a certain direction and it particularly refers to the control over the sexual energy. This includes the perfect control over the sexual fluids, for they are nothing other than the condensed physical form of gigantic, life giving/life creating energies that exist in our being.
All genuine spiritual systems have recognized the paramount importance of preserving these precious and powerful forms of energy or ‘liquid light’. The sexual energy is the strongest creative force in our being, clearly perceivable when we are strongly sexually aroused. It is like a wild horse which needs to be brought under control. Buddha (who took the ascetic Spiritual path of renunciation) has said that if there was any energy stronger than that of the sexual force he would have not been able to reach the enlightenment.
Brahmacharya has been translated by many yogic traditions (those which lean towards renunciation) as celibacy, or the total abstaining from any sexual activity in order to preserve the sexual fluids and use this energy for the spiritual growth. Luckily there is another way of observing brahmacharya whilst not being having to renounce the sexual life; this is the art and ancient discipline of sexual continence.
Tantra Yoga promotes the conscious, lucid, fully controlled and detached use of the energies of the phenomenal world in order to reach superior states of consciousness. It recognizes that the biggest reservoir of potential energy accessible for the human being who wants to realize his spiritual nature is the sexual energy. Instead of fighting against it and suppressing it, Tantra teaches people how to use it wisely.
Sexual desire and pleasure are awakened and amplified to a great extent but then the sexual energy has to be preserved in the aura so we can use it for spiritual purposes. This means that the sexual potential should not be uselessly wasted. The sexual fluids should not be ejaculated because they contain a colossal creative power (in the ejaculation of sperm there is 250 million sperm cells, each one having the potential to make life).
Orgasm and Ejaculation are two separate processes
It is a huge mistake people make when they presume that ejaculation and orgasm equal one and the same thing. They are in fact two separate processes, only they happen very close together in time. The sexual fluids represent the fuel upon which the states of orgasm depend. When they are uselessly lost (ejaculated), the states of orgasm are cut short accompanied by a huge loss of vitality. If the lovers learn instead to make love with sexual continence this allows the attainment of an endless number of orgasms by both lovers (at the same time or separately).
The Classical Tantric texts describe the state of tantric orgasm as a state of expansion, fusion and awareness of the unity and wholeness of the being. A profound state of orgasm is beyond the ordinary boundaries of the mind. The orgasm is so sought and desired not only because it is an extremely pleasant and intense sensation, but because it draws us out of time and offers the opportunity to perceive the taste of eternity, to experience states of cosmic consciousness, to expand ourselves endlessly. It changes our perspective regarding the surrounding reality.
Knowing all this, an aware and spiritual person can reach the summit of spiritual life, the summits that others reach only through prayer and meditation. This achievement implies experiencing love fusion with perfect continence, full transfiguration and spiritual emotion.
Thus, the orgasm is not confined to the genital area and it has nothing to do with the reflex of ejaculation (which simply cuts short the state of orgasm). In order to have multiple orgasms and experience the erotic ecstasy we need to learn how to make the sexual energy circulate in the entire body, and this means preserving it.
The approach to our sexuality represents a veritable art.
This art implies a total awareness of the physiological impulses in making love. When the excitation focused initially in the genital area begins to spread in the entire body, it starts to rise to the head area. In this moment, called the “point of no return” (which needs to be avoided) there is a loss of the conscious control, and a series of genital muscle reflex contractions occur, which result in ejaculation in men and the explosive loss of orgasmic secretions in women. This is like a genuine electrical “black out”, a kind of losing the connection with the energy source, followed by a false relaxation, which is merely the product of exhaustion. Because of the huge loss of energy that results after the ejaculation, any erotic stimulation, meant to produce a new orgasm, is impossible in the next few minutes. This stagnation period is longer in the case of men then in the case of women.
Therefore, we can understand why the Tantric wise men said that while ordinary man decays and is exhausted because of uncontrolled sexuality, the continent yogi, knowing these secrets, will become elevated and will be happier. At the same time, he will progress spiritually through lovemaking, which, instead of making him tired, will regenerate him, allowing him to keep his vitality and inner mental power almost untouched. Indeed, Sexual continence was a guarded secret in ancient times reserved for the nobility of the Orient for granting longevity, health and force.
The human being, who will follow this advice, will thus be able to transform ordinary sexuality into a sacred act. Following the Tantric path, we also notice with delight that the experiences during the lovemaking with continence are more intense and more durable than in the case of lovemaking without continence. In continent lovemaking, we have the impression we can stay like this for hours, we are still full of energy and subtle sensations, peaceful and calm in the outside. Peace will come by itself, it will fill us in, will feed us and it will give us a very concrete, very profound sensation of being, feeling united with ourselves and with the loved being. At the end of the lovemaking we will reach a profound state of intimacy and the accumulated energy will stay for a long period of time.
Alchemizing the Sexual Force
The art of Sexual Continence does not mean only preserving the sexual fluids by refraining from ejaculation. It also involves the alchemizing of the sexual energy into superior forms of energy in our being. Being a superior form of eroticism, sexual continence permits the biological transmutation of the creative sexual potential into superior forms of vital, psychic, mental, spiritual energies, gearing some ineffable inner sublimation processes.
Through the successful realization of sexual continence by both of the lovers the sexual experience becomes plenary, the exhaustion and sleepy sensation which follows ejaculation disappears, the woman becomes capable of attaining the state of orgasm as many times she wants, and the couple’s harmony and happiness is amplified.
Tantra has found that sexual continence is the way to achieve the deepest most enduring happiness in a couple. Within sexual continence, an absolutely necessary aspect, without which the two lovers cannot attain pure spirituality, is transfiguration (read more).