***Disclaimer, all instances of “he” inside this article can be interchanged with the word, “she.” The author, attempting to keep away from things he knows nothing, zip, zilch, nada about, does not claim to understand the beautiful enigma of the female mind and will not attempt to circumnavigate its fiery complexity***

A true celibate cares not and feels no difference if he touches the opposite sex, a piece of stone, paper, or wood. In a case of admitted definition dilution, Brahmacharya means complete freedom from sexual thoughts and desires. One of the eight limbs of yoga, it can loosely encompass “celibacy,” the control of the sexual urge to the point where one is no longer attracted to members of the opposite sex. This thought is interwoven through most philosophies/pathways that are meant to lead to a connection with the divine. Some advanced Brahmacharis even go to the length of saying that you should not even socialize with members of the opposite sex lest you be tempted by ‘original sin’ and begin to have impure thoughts…and…that’s a toughie, because we’ve made an art out of sex in the western world–and separating yoga and sex–another toughie, because yoga is very, very sexy…(for proof of this, check out this controversial, much-shared and undeniably sexy video).

Shiva Rea in Hawaii

One of the most interesting things I ever heard a teacher say was, “if you learn to connect your lingam (phallus) to your heart, you will see your world open up.” This was Shiva Rea addressing a few men out of a mostly-women class in one of the most intensely interesting moments I’ve ever experienced in yoga (she was answering a man’s question of whether she had any advice for men specifically when it came to sexual energy).

But if we are to adhere to brahmacharya…does it mean to be true yogis we need to forego sex and become celibate? Are we to learn how to twist our bodies in beautiful amazing ways and not be able to intertwine them together? Does it mean that we must suppress this amazingly powerful magnetism we feel that can lead us to crescendoing peaks of near body-freeing bliss while also occasionally leaving us in dark places where we guzzle alcohol and/or finish off a pint of Häagen-Dazs to kill the sour taste of love/lust/attraction gone wrong? …. I thought maybe I could give some insight, but as a yogi of three years and human of thirty…I’m not anywhere near a place where I could make a statement either way. Like all things on the yoga mat, there’s a balance that needs to be found, a place of acceptance for who you are and where you are. Judging yourself for doing something wrong or right in the brahmachari or any sense can only lead to negative self conversation or falsely inflated ego. And if you are put to the test with your celibacy, you will hopelessly fail according to Sri Swami Sivananda…but to the answer of whether sex and yoga go together, most signs point to a resounding YES.

 

Don’t forget!!! Win a month of free yoga by commenting below why you deserve said free month of yoga, as part of your 2012, new year goals. 303 Magazine and Core Power Yoga Giveaway is in its final week. Don’t miss it!

***Shiva Rea will be in Crested Butte Feb 10-12 for Yoga Rocks the Butte, along with her partner Demetri Velisarius, who has developed a special form of yoga using a danda (staff), and says compelling things like “A man should know how to handle his staff,” which is amusingly tongue in cheek, but also relevant as a clever double entendre. For anyone wondering what it can look like, see this video of Demetri working with the danda while on fire…you can use the code “solstice” for 1/2 price off the festival ticket***

 

 

 

One Response

  1. Roxanne

    This article has shared a unique perspective on separating your wondering thoughts and a desire to better your self. I think I am an excellent candidate for a free month of yoga because to me 2012 will be a year of discovering who I am through focusing on what makes me feel inspired, healthy, happy, and motivated. I started this quest in late 2011 and have already started to transform from a person who was unsure of herself into a person that is now strong mentally, physically, and emotionally! I know my progress is from becoming better educated about my health. I now exercise 3-4xs a week, I eat better, and it has made a world of difference. A free month of yoga will help me continue on this path by getting me through another month of success!!

    Reply

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