If I could redirect 5% of the money spent on buying sex in the world, I would make sex therapy available for everyone. Who among us couldn’t use a bit of honest communication, non- judgmental listening and questions answered about what makes us tick sexually? If it is true that we all pay for sex in one way or another, I think the idea of paying for sexual healing should be more widely promoted. So many people suffer silently from sexual issues that interfere with their ability to experience intimate pleasure and often translate into obstacles that prevent them from having the lives they dream of. A sexual shaman recently told me that ‘our ability to experience ecstatic bodily pleasure is in direct proportion to our ability to create and manifest what we want in life.’
My lunch with the sexual shaman in Sedona, AZ this summer was revelatory. He described the intention of his classes, workshops and individual sessions, which he offers at his School of Ancient Temple Arts as a balm to heal the world. With a brief history lesson of the sexual ceremonies that were routinely part of our ancestral religious and spiritual life, he explained that the fear and shame that intoxicates most people’s association with sexuality is poisoning our culture. ‘The more people experience intimate love, unbridled passion and limitless pleasure, the more wonderful all our lives will be.’
I originally had heard of the school from one of his satisfied clients who also became a customer of mine. She claimed her experiences in both the weekend workshop and as a private student had changed her life. The freedom of the sexuality he described made me both really curious and uncomfortable all at once. What about the boundary issues? Opening people up in the most vulnerable albeit ecstatic experiences of life is bound to lead to transference. What about the women who fall in love as they are guided to their first orgasm? His response was undefended. He talked at length about how squeaky clean the intentions of the practitioners of sexual healing have to be and how he had worked with people who both had and didn’t have this clarity.
Some of the closest friends I have made in my business journey have been with sex therapists, the people working on the front line of creating sexual wellness. They are by trade the most non- judgmental, open minded thinkers and healers dealing with the issues that block so many people from years of experiencing pleasure. AASECT’s strength comes in part from its inclusive nature. School educators, Planned Parenthood employees, P.h.d. therapists and students, film makers, and product manufacturers mingle and the range of the conversation never disappoints. I am left realizing over and over, that the only true thought about sexuality is that it is so broad, deep and wide that one view could never apply to all.
At one of the first conferences I attended, I met a woman who was a sexual surrogate, not a prostitute, although she was paid by the hour for sex. The difference, she said, is in the intention. Providing the safety, comfort and expertise which allows her customers access to his or her own sexuality was a form of therapy she explained. That direct approach to dealing with sexual issues is common to all forms of sex therapy. Sexual issues do not resolve just because you work on relationship issues. They have a life and history of their own that deserve time and respect and if you are going to spend money to meet your sexual needs, as far as I am concerned there is no better way to spend it then on people whose goal and mission is a healing one. The range of therapy and education options available to heal your sexual issues is as broad and wide as sexuality itself.