A Satsang at Sattvic Space: Saturday, February 28th at 7:00 PM
One of the goals of spiritual practice or being on a spiritual path is balance. We intuit that at least some of our discomfort, dissatisfaction, and dis-ease comes from being out of balance, so we strive to bring our physical bodies into better balance with Yogic exercise, breath work, diet, supplements. We may also strive to bring our spiritual bodies into balance through meditation, contemplation, devotional practices, and prayer. But one of the biggest black holes for most spiritual practitioners is the realm of intimate relationship. We can feel beautifully balanced and full of love at the yoga studio, retreat, or ashram and then watch it all dissolve in frustration when we interact with our intimate partners.
In spiritual communities everywhere we find “awakened” men who use carefully culled spiritual wisdom to suppress and denigrate the natural energetic flow of their more feminine partners, deflowering them of the very thing that made them attractive in the first place and cheating themselves out of a valuable guide to their own enlightenment. And, we find “awakened” women who inhabit more and more of the masculine end of the spectrum of energetic expression and still expect their more masculine partners to remain blissfully satisfied in gender-neutral, sexless relationships.
To be fair to the spiritual teachers who have come from the East, many of their traditions are traditions of celibacy and renunciation and they don’t have a lot to say about the texture of love found in intimacy. They’ve found the problem of intimacy and desire so challenging that they’ve simply taken it off the table. Serious practitioners are expected to forgo intimacy and sexuality (as celibates) or relegate it to a place of not mattering—of being an irrelevance. And yet, in the West many more practitioners are on a spiritual path while simultaneously engaged in an intimate sexual relationship with a partner. For many of us, the challenge to evolve our consciousness is driven by a desire for more happiness and less suffering and we would like that evolved consciousness to be a big enough vessel to contain the love that is most often found in intimacy.
What happens when our spiritual traditions ignore or relegate to unimportant status our healthy desire for intimacy and sexuality and the flavors of the divine we are capable of expressing from masculine or feminine ends of the spectrum, is that we end up trying to do a kind of spiritual bypassing. We end up repressing certain aspects of ourselves in a mistaken notion of what a “spiritually evolved or enlightened person” should look like. And, rather than engaging with our partners to evolve our consciousness, we disengage from intimate relationship by carefully crafted agreements of soul-deadening neutrality or by simple avoidance. Then we wonder why, when our “spiritual practice” seems to be going so well, our relationships begin to disintegrate.
In intimacy we experience both the greatest bliss and the deepest suffering of our lives. Intimacy is the crucible of spiritual evolution. If your spiritual beliefs or practices are not serving you in relationship, do you know why? Do you have the feeling that there must be something more to relationship than you are currently experiencing? Are you ready to explore living and loving fearlessly from your core sexual essence as a spiritual practice? Perhaps it is time to bring another aspect of your life into balance by exploring the householder’s path of Elemental Tantra. Elemental Tantra is not the cultivation of sexual talents and exotic postures, but rather a cultivation of the capacity to use what arises in life as one’s spiritual practice. Rather than deny sexuality and desire and intimacy in the name of some kind of spiritual purity, why not open to it? If all is God or Consciousness, how does it help us better know God or ourselves to exclude that part of God or Consciousness that is the love of intimate partners.
I’d like to invite you to join me at Sattvic Space on Saturday, February 8th, at 7:00 PM for a Loving Wide Open Satsang. Satsang is a Sanskrit word that means “being with the truth.” We are the truth and so a satsang, in a very real sense, is taking the time to be with ourselves, to be with the truth that we already are and have always been. The Loving Wide Open Satsang is an opportunity to be with the truth of why we suffer and why we can’t seem to find the bliss we so desire in relationship—a nudge in the direction of living and loving wide open and awake.
This is perfect for partners or single people looking for partners. Bring your questions bring your deepest challenges in intimacy and life for this lively and challenging discussion of what it means to wake up to your true nature as love.
Please email Tom Crockett at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Kelly Crockett at 757-472-4722 to reserve a space.
Suggested donation: $10.00 (to support activities at Sattvic Space).
Tom Crockett is the author of the books One Drop Awareness: Picturing Enlightenment and Nonduality, PillowBook: Deepening the Art of Sacred Sexual Play, and Stone Age Wisdom: The Healing Principles of Shamanism. Books are available online at Amazon.com. Books purchased at Sattvic Space go to support community activities.