One of the main complaints that people seem to have is that sex is boring. Not usually at first, but after a while. I remember one friend, talking about monogamy saying “ Not many people can put up with the boredom of having sex with the same person for 20 years”
And yet, in other aspects of our life, we take boredom as a sign that something needs to change. But often, this doesn’t apply to sex. The attitude seems to be that Bad Sex just is, like a wet Scottish summers.
One reason for that is that we lack a language to talk about sex. But there are languages. Lots of them. Here’s one language for Sexual Exploration:
When I was exploring tantra, I came across Quodoushka. This is a type of neo-shamanistic teaching on sexuality claiming to originate in Native American Indian spirituality. It’s most famous for classifying 9 genital types for both men and women, which, to me at least, is very liberating, because it gets us out of ideas of “normal”, and I intend to write about this further, but for now, I’d like to talk about one of their other teachings, The Wheel Of Sexuality.
The wheel has 4 modalities, North, South, East and West, and 4 intermediate modalities, North-West, North-East, South East and South West. Each of these corresponds to an aspect of sexuality.
North is Contract. South is Innocence. East is Spirit. West is Body. North West is power over/power under, North East is energetic practices. South East is conventional sex and South West is edgy, challenging sex.
It’s a map which gives us a means to look at ourselves, and what we might do differently. Shakti Tantra do a regular workshop on the Wheel, called Aspects, where you can explore the various modalities.
In my experience, some of these will be looked at more than others. The north east, for instance, isn’t explored so much, because it assumes a technical knowledge that the participants might not have, normally knowledge of the Chinese and Indian exercises for a couple to circulate energy between them, classically, Yab Yum.
My most vivid enactment of the Wheel wasn’t actually at a sexuality workshop at all, but when I was learning body mind centering. Part of that training is is regress to earlier stages of development, and on this occasion we regressed to the oral stage, innocently and openly exploring ourselves and the world around us through our mouth. We were blindfold. I found it incredibly erotic. There was no nudity or overt sexuality, but it was a revelation to me, just this taking of everything into my mouth.
The Wheel can also expand your sense of what a modality is. The easiest way to express North West is through fairly cliched BDSM stereotypes, but if you can stay there, other things can emerge, like fantasy role play, for instance, which opens up a whole other world.
Language plays a crucial role in our liberation. If we can talk about something, we can imagine it differently. If we have a map, we can explore. It’s one of the critical roles of a sex coach, replacing blankness with possibility.