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Spiritual Search and Promiscuous Sex

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Is sexual promiscuity ever a spiritual quest? An effort to satisfy spiritual hunger?

A friend suggested I write about this. I’ve delayed getting to it, because I’m skeptical. My sense is that “sleeping around” is most often a quest for love, power, pleasure, adventure, and/or a view of one’s self as rakish/seductive/desirable. Any combo of those reasons.

Googling did not deliver a lot of wisdom on the subject of spiritual search and promiscuous sex. A discussion at included this thought “…Promiscuous sex could perhaps actually open the door and provide opportunity for ‘awakening’ to the Spirit.” The other comments in the thread took the opposite point of view.

From a book titled Understanding Non-Monogamies: “There’s something numinous about promiscuous experience….Overwhelming physical attraction produces feelings of awe and wonderment and trembling. There is a sort of God aroused, a primitive, chthonic (that is, rooted in the earth), early, elemental God. There is an unfettered experience of the Divine….”

I agree that sex can be full of awe, wonderment, trembling, and the Divine. I don’t believe promiscuity is a surer route to this experience — or that spiritual search is a major motivator of promiscuous sex. At least not a conscious motivator.

What do you think? I’m curious.

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  • February 19, 2016 at 11:28 pm Reply

    “I refuse to answer on the grounds that it may incriminate me.”

    ‘lI’ have to give it some thought.

    • Peggy Payne
      February 20, 2016 at 12:17 am Reply

      I look forward to hearing your thoughts, kenju!

  • Julien
    February 20, 2016 at 5:44 am Reply

    The Italian artist Bernini understood the union of sexuality and spirituality. Sister Teresa wrote some sexy stuff – her fantasies may have been “promiscuous”. I would include the joys of masturbation as being divine at times as well. Here is a youtube link:

    • Peggy Payne
      February 21, 2016 at 8:28 pm Reply

      I can imagine it as a motive, but it does seem to me an unwise choice.

    • Peggy Payne
      February 21, 2016 at 8:31 pm Reply

      I’m with Bernini on the union of sex and spirituality, Julien, but promiscuous sex strikes me as less likely. I’m betting most everyone’s fantasies are promiscuous, not just Teresa of Avila.

  • February 21, 2016 at 8:18 pm Reply

    Your views are consistent with my experiences with clients, P. The physical and emotional risks in promiscuity have been clearly described, and I’d wish a person’d find less dangerous ways to try and explore spirituality. Dr Bob

  • […] as I was driving to my office this morning (38 minutes, so I have time to think). In my previous post, I expressed skepticism about a search for God being a driver of promiscuity. What I realized today […]

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