Sex and Love: Part II

By Beth O'Hara & Deborah Ooten - January 2013

We received several raw and honest responses to our questions about love and sex which ran the gamut of beliefs, values and experience. Thank you to everyone who bared their hearts and souls. Here is a compilation of responses to stimulate further exploration of values and beliefs about love and sex. We are still collecting research and could use your help. If you would like to send us your thoughts and feelings on love and sex, you can email Beth O’Hara with your responses to the questions below. (We will protect your anonymity and never associate your name with your responses.)

What do I believe about Love?
Some saw love as an energy that permeates the universe and many have been deeply wounded by love:

“Love is the law of the Universe.”

“We all seek love, but few of us experience it fully and entirely. There are many twisted ideas of what love is – all of which are tied to ego/type. It encompasses body, mind and heart. “

“It requires loyalty and ultimately is not a result of sex. I don’t believe "love" is a solution to all issues and I believe it is rare when it is sincere and authentic. I think only thing that can really love as it should is a dog.”

“It is powerful. True.”

“I used to believe that love was such a meeting of souls that it transcended time, and was a bond with deep and permanent meaning - a sharing that was never-ending and rose above all difficulties in life.”

“Perhaps true love is that. I have become pragmatic enough and experienced enough to know that love isn't true, and with rare exceptions, isn't forever.”

“Love begins with self-love.”

“I believe that we are on earth to love and to learn how to love. I think love is God. I think all the things that happen to us, good and bad, are simply avenues to learn more about love. I think love hurts. I think it can be hard. I think love is more about giving than receiving. I think, The Giving Tree, is a true story.”

What do I believe about Sex?
People shared the beauty and the heartache surrounding sex:

“Sex is the creative force that can bring forth life and it can also be channeled for self-realization and bliss.”

“My mind is mostly always active because of type, however when I get into my body I can feel the pleasure physically. When I get into my heart I feel love for myself and for the person with whom I am sharing this act. This is the ultimate satisfaction. It is a rare occasion that my heart is fully open during sex.”

“It is addictive”

“I think sex is best in a marriage. I think casual sex is bad. I do not think it grows the souls of people but probably takes away from their spiritual growth. I think sex is holy and that it is best when it says, I love you.”

“Sex should be consensual. It should be shared with someone you either care about or know won't cause complications down the road. It should be fun and/or joyful. Playful. Done with fondness.”

“People are human. Humans for the most part aren't faithful. Given time and stress and opportunity ... most will stray eventually.”

“I used to believe that fidelity was what people in love held as sacred. I now believe that fidelity has more to do with the lack of opportunity or a decrease in respect than it does with love.”

“Sex…I remember it…”

What is Conscious Love?
Conscious Love generally evoked unconditional love for self and others:

“Awareness of the love that pervades all of the Universe and the subtle unmanifest.”

“It is unconditional.
It is endless.
It is sacred.
It does not judge.”

“I don’t see how it (Love) can be unconscious.”

“Awareness of self and partner and higher power."

“My older self, my experienced self ... views love as a connection that starts with basic tenets, most of all the ability and willingness to listen, and share. Giving of yourself, but not giving up yourself.”

“Conscious love is a meeting of the minds, even if there is discord or disagreement, a willingness to share and to protect each other’s self in the process. It is gentle to each other’s' being, always.”

“I think conscious love is when you are aware that love is not about getting what you want or need but rather about learning the lessons of love. Those lessons might be about setting boundaries, or about learning to speak your truth, or even about leaving. The lessons are never about love ending. And, they are always about growing stronger in your ability to love and to forgive. Conscious love is also about learning to see others as our own selves. And, what we do for them, we do for ourselves. And, if we hurt others we hurt ourselves.”

What is Conscious Sex?
Conscious Sex also evoked respect and presence with self and others:

“Intentionally engaging in the generative energy in order to connect with the oneness of all.”

“Respecting and loving yourself entirely throughout. Being aware and attentive to your partner’s/partners’ motivations, needs, changes inside of them. Being aware so as to not harm yourself nor your partner/partners. If harm is inflicted, upon noticing this, the act should stop/be changed so as to take care of self and others. Treat yourself and partner(s) with compassion throughout.”

“Not in a fantasy.”

“I don't know that I've ever really experienced conscious sex.”

“I think conscious sex is a choice. It is a choice to make sex holy. Not holy/boring, but holy/fun. Holy in that sex is tied to love. It is tied to giving and to forever. It is safe because you know you are loved and cherished by your partner.”

What are your beliefs about monogamy and polyamory (having multiple partners)?
This question induced charged answers and a wide difference in values:

“My belief is to do no harm, which requires complete honesty with self and with partners.”

“I think both can be fulfilling – it’s a matter of choice and preference dependent on lifestyle, values and needs.”

“People should do as they see fit. I could not tolerate polyamory in my personal relationship. Sleeping around is not polyamory. Polyamory is multiple commitments. I am too possessive for that.”

“What consenting adults do in their private lives is their business, as long as it's without pressure and everyone participating wholly agrees to the circumstances.”

“I think that monogamy is the way to go. I think multiple partners is sleazy and does not promote being cherished and being safe. I think the fruit of cheating or multiple partners is not holy. I think great pain accompanies adultery. I think open marriages are things that create environments that are messy and usually dissolve. When I look at my friends, those that seem the happiest are those with strong, long lasting marriages or partnerships.”

What thoughts, feelings and sensations do these questions and replies raise for you? We invite you to share your responses here.

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