Fulfilling Sex Life – Not a Goal But a Byproduct of the Beautiful Process of Becoming
Coffee Time 2/24/14
To begin our coffee time we used a 32-minute meditation from Adyashanti – one I have been using on my own for most of 2014. Its title is “Breath as Life and Death.” (click here to listen) It is from a 24-hour set of recordings from his 2013 Easter week retreat last April titled: Jesus – the Teachings of a Revolutionary Mystic. I enjoyed the full recording and find this short 32-minute clip quite rich as a meditation to begin our day and sharing time.
I apologize for the redundancy and confusing structure of what follows. The ideas all seem intertwined, and while it was not my goal to be redundant perhaps the redundancy will help communicate some of the ideas I am trying to share in a way that can be understood by more people.
Recently Pat and I have been working with several of the Pathwork Lectures in our morning coffee time. Two come to mind for this particular morning: 154 Pulsation of Consciousness and 218 The Evolutionary Process. This morning we realized we are just now beginning to “get” the “beautiful problem” message from the Guide — that “the problem” is the “medicine” of its “cure.” The morning coffee time conversation and my reflections that followed as shared below evolved in part from this idea.
Midway through our coffee time explorations we felt a shift in awareness regarding this “problem-as-the-medicine-of-its-cure” idea. We saw that while this phrase is true, the cure is not a direct result of the medicine. Let me expand on what we discovered…
In taking in the lectures we realized that “to cure the problem” is NOT the ultimate PURPOSE for using the “medicine” that the “problem” is. Let me say this again. The PURPOSE for using the “medicine” by working with the “problem” is not to cure the problem, but rather the PURPOSE of using the “problem” as the “medicine” is to further our process of overall spiritual and personal development, that is, to use the “problem” as the “medicine” in furthering our process of purification and transformation – to use it in playing our role in the Plan of Salvation.
This having been said, however, it turns out that the actual cure of the problem mysteriously arises without our even noticing it or being aware of it. Suddenly, as if by itself and unrelated to our spiritual and personal work, the “problem” resolves while we are “looking in another direction” so to speak. And later when we look back we realize that the “cure” to our “beautiful problem” not only occurred but that our “healing” of this problem took us far beyond anything we could have imagined as a “cure.” The cure we sought was a little “c” cure. The cure we got was a big “C” Cure!
And this “beautiful big ‘C’ Cure that is far beyond what we expected” did not come directly. Rather it came indirectly as a byproduct of the purification and transformation process that happens through our working with the problem as the medicine it is. Have I confused you yet?
Let me give a practical example, perhaps a bold example to share, but this example is the one of the problems we have been working on through most of our relationship and especially now, so why not use it: problems in sexual fulfillment in our relationship, whatever sexual fulfillment means.
Long ago we began our journey into this morass of sexuality with the goal in mind (at least in me, to be honest) of achieving deeper sexual fulfillment. “Just give us the game plan and we’ll do it!” Never mind that we had no real idea of what “deeper sexual fulfillment” might feel like or be like! We are doers after all, and can tackle anything. But take-charge-doing is not what addresses our problems in sexual fulfillment, of course. The problems are of a different nature entirely it seems.
Now we get back to the insight Pat and I are finally beginning to get. Our goal in tackling the beautiful, but oh-so-delicate, problems of unfulfilled sexuality is to help us in our respective spiritual and personal development, that is, help us in our individual purification and transformation, all in accordance with the wonderful Plan of Salvation.
Pause here to take this in. Pat’s and my goal in our lives is the seemingly unglamorous, unexciting, demotivating and heavy work of purification and transformation. Ugh! But eventually, over the years, we have come to accept this hypothesis that for Pat and me at least purification and transformation are indeed the goals of our lives on this planet, as so clearly proclaimed in the Pathwork lectures.
So in our example of working with sexual problems we proceed to do our work of purification and transformation. How? We ask ourselves, “What are our experiences of frustration in our sexual relationship, images or wrong beliefs about sexuality, wrong conclusions, negative intentionality, etc. all around sexuality?”
But the window to our psyches that sexuality opens is broader, actually the window that sexuality opens is all-inclusive! We have come to realize that dealing with these aspects (images, negative intentionality, etc.) in our psyches as they relate to sexual issues leads us to deal with these same images, beliefs, wrong conclusions and negative intentionality that limits us in all other areas of life beyond sexuality, namely in areas of our creativity, wisdom, love, peace, joy and other divine potentials of our Divine Essences. So using the window of “sexual problems” opens up Pat’s and my lives in all other areas of our being. This is quite significant and motivates us to use any lack in our sexual fulfillment as the “problem” and “medicine” for our soul that it is!
And as Pathwork says, the profound energy around sexual issues is quite strong and pervasive in humans, and it is that way for a purpose: in order that we humans are motivated to grow and to do this in order to achieve the lofty and evasive goal of “sexual fulfillment” for which we are built to long. So again, sexual fulfillment seems to be a very strong, deep, healthy, natural and universal longing for all of us humans.
Thus it has been for us through our 14 years together. It is only late in our relationship that Pat and I have come to realize that addressing our perceived lack of sexual fulfillment, while initially the motivator for doing our work around sexuality, is not our ultimate goal per se in working this issue.
As I said before, this is quite a realization. The intense longing for sexual fulfillment in Pat and me and in all humans is just the “bait” to get us to do our work of purification and transformation! I smile at this – the humor of God’s plan of salvation! Here we have a true “bait and switch” strategy at the core of God’s Plan of Salvation! “Bait” us with “longing for sexual fulfillment” then switch to the higher purpose of purification and transformation taking us to wholeness and bliss on every level of our being, an active participant in the Plan of Salvation. Not a bad trick I would say — and one we seem to need!
OK, so we do not tackle the beautiful problems of sexuality in order to solve our problems in sexuality and, therefore, in order to have a “wonderful” and “fulfilling” sex life per se. HOWEVER, while a “better sex life” is not our direct goal – our goal rather being spiritual and personal development through purification and transformation – as we work on our images, wrong conclusions, negative intentionality, etc. as related to our sexuality, and increase our purification and the allow more of the transformation of our negative intentionality, it turns out that the problems we have in sexuality dissolve automatically. And that dissolving in turn leads to a more fulfilling sex life – fulfillment beyond any expectations we could have had – that is, “sexual bliss.” But all of this “sexual bliss” happens automatically as a byproduct of our purification and transformation.
Knowing what our goal is (purification and transformation per the Plan of Salvation) and what our goal is NOT (better sex) seems to be a very important awareness as Pat and I do our work. Why do I say this? For several reasons — most of which we have already mentioned, but let me recapitulate.
First, if we focus on the “goal” of “better sex” we are limited to what our expectations are concerning “better sex.” We can’t see beyond what we can imagine, and what we can imagine is actually pretty limited when compared to our full potential! In other words, if we focused on the goal of sexual fulfillment we would be satisfied with much less sexual fulfillment than what we have as our potential. In this way of focusing on specific goals we may miss what “better sex” actually has to offer.
Our counselors, Sage and Anthony, speak of “intercourse on every level – physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual” – but Pat and I have no preconceived idea what on earth they even mean by this expression. So we let go of the goal of “better sex” and see what evolves as we do our work. Any expectation we may have had drops away, but we keep our positive expectancy for a positive outcome, trusting the goodness of God and the Cosmos.
Secondly, Pathwork Lecture 218 The Evolutionary Process ¶22, offers, “The growth process is in itself beautiful, meaningful, and to be respected. It is the same with the evolutionary process that includes the purification of distortions and negativity.” So beauty is in the ever-continuing process of becoming, the ever-continuing process of awakening, the ever-continuing process of coming into a deeper level of consciousness, and an ever more-complete manifestation of our innate potentiality.
In other words, beauty is NOW, in experiencing the process of life itself in each moment, not in the arrival at some higher state of consciousness, or being in some awakened state beyond where we are in this moment. By focusing on the evasive goal of “greater sexual fulfillment” “out there sometime in the future” we miss the fact that the beauty and joy of life on earth is in this process of becoming whole!
Regarding sexual fulfillment, it is living in the NOW of each moment of our sexual experiences. In other words, “Sexual Fulfillment is a verb, a process, not a noun! We do not have to wait until we have done “enough” purification and transformation to reach a goal of what we define “sexual fulfillment” to be. We experience sexual fulfillment in each moment of our process of purification and transformation. We discover that sexual fulfillment happens in every moment of our process, of our life! Quite a realization and quite a blessing of Grace!
Thirdly, from Pathwork Lecture 218 The Evolutionary Process, this unfolding process is natural, involuntary and spontaneous. This unfolding of our full sexuality is what our Divine Essence wants to do in and through us. In this sense our job of purification and transformation is all about getting out of the way of our own evolution! And we discover that holding back our evolution by building up our defenses (pride, self-will, and fear) and our tidying up our masks (pseudo-power mask, pseudo-love mask, and pseudo-serenity mask) takes far more work than letting go, surrendering to our Divine Essence, and freely allowing the involuntary sexual experiences to flow through our being so we can feel the Joy of our sexual energies.
Fourthly, this view of “beautiful problems” as related to “Sexual Fulfillment” leads us to full acceptance of our merely and utterly human limitations, faults, and distortions relating to sexuality. Instead of shrinking from our human limitations and foibles in shame, denying them, or covering them up with our idealized self image – masks of pseudo-power, pseudo-love, and pseudo-serenity, we embrace our human limitations and faults regarding sexuality and welcome them into our lives for the medicine they are, the very medicine needed for the our work of purification and transformation. We approach life and all its problems, sexual and otherwise, with a sense of life’s sacredness, an eager curiosity and a sense of purpose in fulfilling our role in the Plan of Salvation.
Fifthly, the return we get from working on sexual fulfillment expands to the fulfillment on every level of our entire being — manifesting in Joy, Peace, Love, Compassion, Wisdom and other aspects of our Divine Essence. From this space our capacity for Life and service grows.
And finally, by finding beauty in the NOW, in the ever-continuing and ever-present process of becoming, and by fully accepting where we are in the NOW, every moment of our lives on this earth becomes filled with Joy, Peace, Beauty, Creativity, and yes, fulfilling sexuality. We do not have to wait for fulfillment in our sexuality to come only after our work of purification and transformation is complete. Rather, this fulfillment comes in every step.
But in this final point we realize that our capacity for holding the experience of fulfilling sexuality grows as we grow, and we can enjoy sexual fulfillment to the full measure of our then-current capacity for sexual fulfillment in every moment of the journey. What a blessing! What Grace.
Again, I struggle with the redundancy in this writing. I am holding a great deal of energy and excitement for these ideas, and I hope some of them can resonate with where you are in your journey.
Let me conclude with an interesting audio clip that may not seem at all related, but the principle does. Pat an I are listening to an audiobook by Mark Nepo: Seven Thousand Ways To Listen. We were motivated to buy and listen to more of this audiobook based on the 4-minute sample given by Audible. We listened to the short 4-minute sample during our coffee time this morning, and it seems to fit the “beautiful problem” and “the joy is in the sacred process of becoming” message. If you are interested in listening to the sample: Play “sample” under this link to the audio version available from Audible: Seven Thousand Ways To Listen.
Shared in love, Gary