I’ve written about one of the greatest verses in the history of mystical teachings. I quoted Gautama the Buddha, saying that the nature of life, Moksha, enlightenment is found within the Yoni, the vagina. I titled the article the Secrets of the Yoniverse. I was surprised to have so much opposition to what I wrote and was asked to clarify and explain further.
The deepest truth that the Buddha has expressed can be translated differently. His literal words were ‘Buddha nature is found within the vagina’, but the mystical translation is – ‘I need you’. My desire, my emptiness, my lack of wholeness cannot be fulfilled without you. His statement carries no sexual charge, he could care less if you have sex or not. If you choose to take celibacy or have lots of sexual pleasure. He could care less what your sexual preferences are, if you are attracted to men or women, neither or both.
By saying that enlightenment is found within the vagina, the enlightened one pointed out one of the greatest mystical truths. We need one another. He expressed in great precision – I implies other. Duality, other-ness, the ability to recognize the state of separation is a gift and not the problem.
After years of asceticism, of living under harsh conditions; meditating, fasting, concentrating and practicing myriad techniques, too weak to continue he chooses to accept milk and rice from a young and beautiful lady. His friends leave him for that choice. He then hears the discourse of a sitar teacher, teaching his disciple that plucking the strings too harshly will cause them to break and too softly will result with a disharmonious sound. That brought our young monk to the epiphany that forcing his mind too harshly will cause it to harden and break and too softly will yield no results either. He then proceeds to meditate and experience his awakening. He begins to teach and offers in his first discourse, (called the Dhamma-cakkappavattana Sutra) the middle way, and expression of his truth around not choosing to follow extremes. He goes into great detail how neither the householder life nor the ascetic one can lead to an awakened state of being.
As I mentioned in my previous article on the subject, the way I understand this profound statement has literally nothing to do with the sexual act itself but the understanding of human nature and the nature of consciousness. To oppose accepting our sexuality, to fear our human desires is one of the greatest causes to suffering and pain infliction on this planet. There has been more harm done in the name of God and spiritual teachings than any other form of dogma or idealism ever. It is appalling for me to realize that linking spirituality to sexuality is still, after thousands of years of conscious development frowned upon. Why being human, flawed and imperfect is so hard to accept. Why are we so attracted to escape who we are and what moves us so deeply.
If you allow and witness your own inner being, you’ll realize that your sexual urge carries great energy. A profound state of presence, an incredible resilience and a call for creativity. Yes… I know, I’ve heard, read and experienced, addiction to the sexual energy can be harmful, it can lead you to harm, but so does any other form of addiction. From what I’ve seen around me, addiction to alcohol, to self-denial and self-hate are far worse addictions and yet so prevalent and socially accepted. I haven’t seen too many clinics dealing with self-limiting belief addictions, I haven’t seen too many support groups for addicts dealing with negative thinking and self-hate. Those addictions are far more destructive and these emotional diseases are so widespread literally everywhere around the globe.
What I understand the Buddha to have said in that profound statement is simply a call for us to not escape our human nature. To look for the perfection in our imperfections. Accepting our desires and looking straight into them. Into that sense of lacking, of need. He asked us to not be afraid of our limitations but to try and understand them. He implored us not to fear our death but embrace it so fully in order to truly be grateful for every waking moment.
When you stop fearing sex, seeing it as a distraction on your spiritual path, you might find that when exploring your sexuality, the act of sexual union itself is actually a deep practice of being in the now, of presence, of attention and listening to another and in most cases, if you allow it, it will silence your mind. If you choose to sit up and meditate right after, to observe your breathing, the motion of your body, the sense of oneness that follows, you might realize you’ve been running away from a profound experience of nothingness, of being in the now of an overwhelming sense of peace and silence that has always been there, waiting for you to pay attention.
It isn’t by chance that in almost all languages, while having sex many of us moan and shout ‘Oh my God’… somewhere, deep inside, we know that deep pleasure and connection are a divine experience. We feel in our deepest sense of pleasure and ecstasy that we touch something of heaven. What I believe the Buddha was trying to imply is that right there, within our deepest sense of delight, of connection, of intimacy, of sexual union the doorway to self-love, self-acceptance, self exploration is found.
Stop looking for techniques and methods towards exploring “sacred” sexuality. Sexuality is sacred on its own. The ability to open up and offer intimacy to another is a holy act. What you need to explore is not sexual techniques, but ways to shift your attitude. Your perspective about sex, about life and intimate connections. Having sex in acrobatic ways, while breathing through your right nostril or while standing on one leg isn’t what will shift and open your heart. Approaching your beloved as a doorway to the divine — will.
This post has been written as a response to comments and requests for clarification to a previous post made explaining the Buddhist quote: Buddhatvam Yosit-yoni-samasritam. Buddha Nature is Found in the Vagina. For a deeper explanation and commentary on this verse visit – The Secrets of the Yoniverse.