Monday 1 June 2015

Review: Pagan Portals - Sacred Sex and Magick

I really admire this down-to-earth, sensible book about sacred sex within paganism. Pagan Portals - Sacred Sex and Magickis a collaborative effort of 18 members of the Web PATH Center, a pagan church in America.

It states: “Men and women in the Web wrote this book to share common and uncommon knowledge about the magick of human sexuality. Magick and sex are sacred.”

They wrote with honesty, using examples from their own lives and their own experiences. It is a brave and much-needed exploration of the use of sex and sexual energy within pagan spiritual practices.

One reason this is much needed is that sex has become a controversial issue in pagan communities recently. Sure, we have always had to tackle mistaken beliefs by the ignorant - and sometimes deliberate misrepresentation by sensationalist press journalists - that pagan rituals are orgies and we all get together just to take our kit off and shag. No, of course, we don’t. Actual, physical sex is never a required part of any genuine Gardnerian or Alexandrian Wiccan ritual and should never be a required part of any modern pagan witchcraft rite.

No one should ever feel obliged to have any sexual contact with someone if they don’t want to. The problem is, there have recently been some shocking accounts of unscrupulous individuals taking advantage of vulnerable newcomers to the Craft by saying that intercourse is necessary for initiation. It absolutely isn’t – and these individuals are just abusers.

Horror at the idea of such sick goings-on has, understandably, led to a few pagans claiming that sex is never a part of pagan rites, except in the abstract and intellectual sense of honouring the cycles of life or between properly married couples in privacy, perhaps after their handfasting. This is actually also inaccurate.

Sexual energy is a valid part of pagan magick, and physical sex is magickal too, as Pagan Portals - Sacred Sex and Magickstates: “Sexuality is magick and transformation. Isn’t everything different after deeply satisfying sexual experiences? Orgasm raises power and releases it within the body, sending it outward. When a magickal intent has been formed between the lovers, then that power is directed toward their shared purpose. Balancing male and female energy in yourself with sexual orgasm, within yourself and a partner of opposite sex, or within different aspects of inner selves in partners of same sex, brings a spiritual awareness to otherwise physical encounters.”

On sex as a religious experience, as the authors state: “In exploring sacred sex and magick, we seek individual transcendence and merger with the Divine. Our egos expand and lose their fear of annihilation. Our spirits embrace the essential soul of All Being, ours and the Other. One gateway to the Infinite is through sacred sex.”

The book carefully and sensibly discusses a number of different aspects of sex within magic and pagan ritual. It looks at the current situation in contemporary paganism, how sacred sex is used in ritual, the chakras in sex magick and spirit lovers. In the final chapter, the authors offer excellent advice – including safe sex and ethics.

Publisher Moon Books says on its website: "The members of the Web PATH Center describe how ordinary ritual practices like grounding and creating a cone of power involve sensuality and rising kundalini energy. They explain how to use that power in making magick happen. Then they share secrets of the Great Rite and how to include the power of the sacred marriage at home. This book is for people who want a spiritual path that involves the physical ecstasy of sex and the dynamics of magick that works. Solitaries, pagan partners and spouses, and people with spirit lovers will all dance with the ecstasy found in this book."

Pagan Portals - Sacred Sex and Magickconcludes by saying: “Enjoying the ecstasy of sex magick while remaining grounded and ethical is a responsible commitment.” It is. This book offers a grounding in how to experience that ecstasy and use the power of sex for magickal purposes, but also how to remain ethical at all times.

Sacred Sex and Magickis in Moon Books’ Pagan Portals series, which is aimed at those just starting out on their spiritual paths. Hopefully it will not only teach the basics of this important aspect of magick, but also help keep beginners safe from sexual predators.

Links and previous related posts
Pagan Portals - Sacred Sex and Magick

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