Advanced Yoga Practices
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Principles of Tantra and Homosexuality (Audio)
T39.1 - Enlightenment
is Beyond Gender Identification (Audio)
Date: Thu Jan 13, 2005 1:28pm
It is recommended you read from the beginning of this tantra yoga archive,
as previous lessons are prerequisite to this one. The first lesson is, "What
is tantra yoga?"
Q: Hello. If you would, I would
like you to clarify what you mean by "destructive" behavior when responding
to the question about pornography and masturbation. Is it the pornography
itself to which you refer? Or the obsessive relationship with it? And, what
do you mean by pornography? Also, surely you're not referring to
masturbation as destructive are you? Is it ejaculation to which you refer?
As someone who has struggled with negativity
and fear surrounding sexual energy and expression, these comments make a
deep impression on me. I would appreciate hearing your view on these topics
Also, I haven't come across any specific mention of
homosexuality in these writings. What is your view of homosexuality in
relation to these practices?
Thanks for your help and time.
A: From the standpoint of yoga, a destructive behavior is one that
weakens our nervous system, and adds physical and karmic obstructions to it.
This is in the opposite direction of the aim of yoga, which is to strengthen
and purify our nervous system so that inner silence, divine ecstasy and
outpouring love can become gradually more a part of our daily life.
In AYP there is not much moral judgment about conduct beyond encouraging
everyone to obey the laws of the land and not harm others. The main handle
on conduct in AYP is the practices themselves. With daily deep meditation,
spinal breathing and other advanced yoga practices, including tantric
methods, conduct automatically and gradually comes around to the bright side
through the connectedness of yoga in our nervous system. If the desire is
there (the divine stirring within us) then daily practices can be undertaken
and sustained. Even a little meditation can move a mountain of obstructions
within us. We want to be removing the mountains, not making them bigger. It
is logical, yes?
If additional help is
needed with a strong obsessive behavior/addiction, then using a twelve step
program is recommended.
Pornography itself is only imagery. It is designed to be sexually
stimulating, and nothing else. So may be a provocatively dressed member of
the opposite sex strolling down the street. Clearly the effect of these
things is in how we respond to them. We may try and control our outer
environment to reduce temptations, and even succeed at that for a while.
But, in the end, the transformation must be an internal one. Once we have
begun to make inner changes we will be much less a slave to external erotic
stimulation. As a matter of fact, as has been discussed in recent lessons,
such stimulation can then be used for a higher purpose with tantric
One will be wise to undertake daily deep meditation and
other sitting practices as a prerequisite to using tantric methods. Then
even our obsessions can become yoga, shifting from outer objects to the
ecstatic bliss of the divine within. The only difference between a sex
addict and an advanced yogi/yogini is in what they are obsessed with! This
is why desire/bhakti has been stressed so much in the lessons. Always
favoring a high ideal with our desire is the key. In the twelve steps it is
referred to as "giving ourselves to a higher power in our life." Make a
habit of that and be willing to act on it, and positive changes will be
occurring like magic.
The same thing goes for masturbation as for
pornography. It can be friend or foe, depending on the direction of our
desire and how the energy is managed. This is especially important for men,
and has been covered in detail in the early tantra lessons.
ejaculation is mostly foe, but we are not fanatical about it in the lessons.
Occasional ejaculation is not a serious barrier to yoga. Frequent
ejaculation is. This is not a moral judgment. It is just a fact of
prana/energy management. The neuro-biology of higher states of consciousness
cannot reach full potential without sexual vitality available in the body.
If we are draining it to excess all the time, we will be limited in how far
we can go in yoga.
As our desire/bhakti calls us to a higher
purpose, it becomes clear what direction we should gently favor to progress.
Notice I said "gently favor." Not condemn, fear, self-hate, chastise, etc.
We just learn some good methods and favor them systematically. That is how
enlightenment is achieved, no matter what level we are working at -- by
gently favoring our ideal in each moment we realize we have strayed off a
bit. If we develop the habit of gently favoring our ideal and practice, all
can be accomplished. We learn how to do this with the method of deep
meditation in the lessons. Then the habit of favoring expands into all areas
of our life. AYP is the art of gentle persuasion applied through time-tested
techniques that promote human spiritual transformation.
homosexuality, while this has not been my personal lifestyle, the principles
of tantra are clearly beyond such distinctions. For example, celibates have
a clear path to enlightenment, as do heterosexuals. Neither is inferior to
the other. The principles underlying both are the same, and the methods are
similar. If you review the tantra lessons, you will see that this is so.
Brahmacharya is the key, which is preservation and cultivation of sexual
energy. See lesson #T9 on this. There is no reason why
homosexuals cannot travel the road to enlightenment within the lifestyle
they are living. I am sure many have over the centuries. The sitting
practices will be just the same, including those that cultivate the
expansion of sexual function upward in the nervous system. The holdback
method (#T4), blocking (#T5),
count method (#T23) and other aspects of tantra yoga
can all be applied in homosexual relations.
The goal in the tantra
lessons is to provide principles and practices that can be used successfully
in any lifestyle. AYP does not endorse any particular lifestyle. Neither
does it condemn any that does not willfully harm others.
I wish you
all success on your chosen spiritual path. Enjoy!
The guru is in you.
Related Lessons Topic Path
Discuss this Lesson in the AYP Plus Support Forum
instructions on the methods of tantra in relation to the broad scope of yoga
practices and the enlightenment process,
see the AYP Tantra book,
and AYP Plus.
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