In response to my post on masturbation a reader introduced me to the idea that the orgasm is the part of sex that results in craving, not the sex. I’ve been thinking about this idea and there are definitely aspects of it that resonate with me. These are currently just thoughts for me, but it’s an interesting enough idea that I wanted to share it.
So to start, I need to speak as a biologist. The idea of celibacy being noble has always bothered me because as a species we need to reproduce. It’s part of the life-death cycle. How could I accept that sex as a whole is bad? At the same time, I’ve observed a lot of suffering from sexual obsession and passion, so it’s not like everything about sex is good. I was just stuck not knowing how to explore this subject. Enter the idea to separate sex from the orgasm.
Now, one thing I needed to look up was whether it was possible for a man to ejaculate without an orgasm. Apparently, these are just two closely related events meaning that it is possible for a man or orgasm without ejaculating and to ejaculate without orgasming. I have no idea how this works, but I read it on the internet, so it must be true!
So continuing in this thought experiment, lets explore why an orgasm might be problematic. From a Vipassana perspective, it’s easy to observe craving for an orgasm. That’s why we masturbate. That’s why we have sexual fantasies. That’s why we fall in love with movie stars. We want revel in these made up realities so we can get high on neural chemicals that come with orgasms. The entire experience happens within my own body These sensations can easily be compared to drugs, alcohol, or any other addiction.
This craving for an orgasm removes us from our reality and brings us misery. Instead of focussing on the relationship I’m in and connecting at a deeper level in a real way with this person, I’m fantasizing about a different situation which will improve my chemical high. In some ways, a one night stands is just as good if not better than a relationship for getting high. If I’m focused on connecting with the other person in that present moment, I can’t endulge any fantasy. This could make for a healthier relationship and for a healthier meditation practice.
So is there joy in orgasmless sex? Is it healthy and connecting to have sex without climaxing? Does “making love” really refer to everything else besides the orgasm? Can I really dissociate ejaculation from orgasm? I don’t know, but it’s an interesting idea. I can’t imagine abusive sex without the goal of climaxing. Taking the orgasm out of the dynamic might make sex more of a bonding experience. I’m no sexpert, but it’s some food for thought. Time to meditate.