Sex is one of the most fundamental and most misunderstood parts of our lives.
The following may seem like a detraction at first, but it will simplify the picture that will make it easier to understand the details of the joys and challenges you face in your sexual life.
Sex is the most powerful human drive after the need to breath. We will forego eating, drinking and sleep to satisfy this need. It’s not because we are bad or perverted. It’s because passing on our genes, perpetuation of the species, is the most essential program built into all living things, from trees to snails to humans.
Evolution is a result, not an intention. It sorts out what works and what doesn’t work. Physical and behavioral traits that worked got passed along in the survivors’ DNA, survival of the fittest.
Some organisms can replicate themselves without a partner, but the diversity of adding variety to the inherited genes has proven to create stronger, more resilient offspring. Organisms that mixed their genes with others of their kind to create new life proved to be one of evolution’s most successful strategies. Sex.
Nature encouraged sexual activity by making it as pleasurable, desirable and attractive as possible. Monogamy was not part of nature’s design. With the high mortality of earlier humans, it was important to spread that seed as far and frequently as possible.
Brief periods of the male protecting his vulnerable offspring and its mother in the earlier stages of its development made evolutionary sense, but not mating with available females was not part of the design. For the species to survive, it was important to create as many humans as frequently as possible.
As social structures developed, monogamy became a strategy in some societies, but not all. Protecting the young was a community responsibility, not the sole responsibility of the impregnating male.
Tribes and communities were at war for territory and resources to ensure their survival and many a man was lost at war. The community sharing the responsibility of protecting and raising their young was a much smarter strategy than leaving innumerable women and children unsupported if the male was lost.
Civilization has devised many schemes to improve and simplify life. Many of the things we take for granted in our social structures and values are only recent developments in the long story of humanity.
Physical strength, mental acuity, social structures, religions, human laws, emotions, pain and pleasure, fears and desires are all merely part of life’s strategy to propagate and sustain itself. Everything we do, everything, can be boiled down to this one essential fact.
We cannot not be driven by sex. Regardless of your views on world population, sexual orientation, celibacy, etc., the underlying programming is there.
Most creatures just follow natural instincts to reproduce, but when humans became sapient creatures able to imagine and visualize abstract intangible concepts and to communicate those concepts to each other and to deliberately manifest change, things got complicated.
We devised social structures and mythologies such as religion to help organize our communities. We discovered there was strength in cooperation as a group that had advantages for our survival as a species. Every tribe or group of people created guidelines to ensure coherence of the community as a whole. Even today, this is true on national and global scales.
And what better way to manifest the world you want than to manage the social perception of human’s innate fundamental drive. Sex.
Some societies say we are born of sin.
Some societies say we are born of love.
Either way, our bodies are here because of sex.
Many religious leaders understand the leverage they have to organize and manage the masses by describing this most powerful and inescapable sexual drive as bad and as a fault. This is the source of so much guilt and pain and ineffectiveness around matters of sex and self-esteem. Low self-esteem makes subjects much more malleable.
However, there are other leaders that understand the benefits of exalting and honoring this most fundamental human drive to strengthen and celebrate the spirits of their people.
Understanding sex at its most basic level offers an explanation for all your joy and psychological distress around sex. Herein lie the components behind your youthful excesses, your midlife crisis, your midlife awakening, your erectile disfunction, your addiction to porn and all the satisfaction or guilt that any sexual activity brings you.
As with anything else, viewing something from a higher vantage point can give you a broader perspective unavailable from the mire below. Worlds and concepts you didn’t know exist and new ways of seeing the world become apparent. The weight you thought you had to bear alone may be shared by many and may be completely unnecessary for all.
This is really important for sex, and sex is a topic that is usually ignored or avoided — or relegated to overindulgence in protest. This avoidance is thanks in large part to the puritanical manipulation of society to keep people broken and manageable.
When you realize how this perspective has been trained into our way of thinking for millenia, it is no wonder that there are so many problems that grow out of our struggles to manage our desires with our perceived views of goodness and worthiness in a society that villainizes and constricts sexual expression.
And how does this relate to your vitality as you grow older?
By not understanding sex and our relationship to it on its most basic level, we develop all sorts of mental and emotional roadblocks over a lifetime that inhibit us from experiencing this most enjoyable and free form of pleasure, satisfaction and rejuvenation in our lives.
We think our bodies aren’t working the way we want them to and start taking pills to give us erections and look for foods and supplements to enhance our sexual drive se we can feel vital and driven like when we were younger. We are not ready to succumb to the idea that we are one day older and closer to death. We want to live and sex is one of the ways that makes us feel so very alive!
We see loss of muscle mass, addition of sagging skin and wrinkles as proof that we are undesirable. Our resulting depression makes us weary and we are always tired. Surely signs of the end. But that story is usually in our head, not in our body. It is not pills for erectile disfunction that will restore us, but a renewed understanding of and appreciation of sex in a new light that will breath life back into our spirits and our loins.
The entire food and fitness aspect of vitality is merely a support system to optimize your personal inherent potential. When you take care of the physical basics, the psychological and mental repair and growth gains advantage to achieve its potential.
Some people have grown to dislike their sexual lives over time to the degree that they make themselves undesirable in looks and in deeds. This is one of the most frequent responses to long-term monogamous relationships where partners have grown emotionally lazy and materially comfortable.
Understanding the origins of the concept of monogamy may help you navigate and redefine or redesign a restrictive or confining situation in your life. It may also prevent you from throwing out the baby with the bathwater if you are in a relationship that needs to be brought back to life, with or without monogamous commitment.
We can make our own rules in our relationships, but they must align with our true inner values and not just be a lashing out of self-indulgent promiscuity. We no longer live in a world where we need to increase the human population to sustain the species. Monogamy may actually serve us well in creating bonds that strengthen us and help fulfill us to the degree that we overflow with generosity of spirit.
Entire civilizations have been made and destroyed by sex. Marriage was more of an economic construct than the romanticized once-in-a-lifetime true love that Hollywood has been feeding us for over a century. Marriage was a way of formalizing the rights to annex and control land and subjects, to expand empires and to bind relations for a purely economic intention. This is as true of empires as it has of families. Marriage expanded the defined economic holdings of a family it expanded.
The forces of nature exist with or without humans and their constructs.
Religion is a powerful organizational strategy created by humans and it is no surprise that deferring responsibility to intangible indestructible deities has its advantages, but religion is a human construct capable of making life worse as well as better. Guilt and fear are deterrents that are far from the constructive and creative forces that improve our lives.
Understanding that your self-worth is not defined by how well you follow the rules of social constructs set by other humans, but by living by what you understand to be aligned with your truth will give you the wings to rediscover a wonderful part of your life set free from any dogmatic prison.
As we get older we may find it frivolous or self-indulgent to re-explore ourselves sexually, but it is important to see sex for what it is in the human design and lay aside all puritanical judgement and guilt. It is not wrong to allow yourself to rediscover and experience pleasure.
It may be interesting to try, but you don’t have to pay someone for tantric classes to take you through the exploration and re-discoveries of your youthful awakening body. Allow your body to respond to stimulation in its own way, not feeling the need to perform or respond physically like a porn star. Relax and rediscover sensation without performance. You may just discover you don’t need pills or porn but just your presence to enjoy and experience one of life’s most wonderful cost-free, spirit-freeing gifts.
When you learn to explore and rediscover your body and sexual experiences, with or without another person, you open yourself up to releasing constrictive mental and muscle memories that will allow you to more fully express yourself as a physical as well as spiritual being.
Your sense of vitality will open up and energize all the other neglected parts of your life which in turn will help you contribute positive constructive energy to the world at large and make this a better place for all of us.
Are there foods and supplements that can enhance your sexual drive and performance?
Are they necessary as you grow older?
Everything in this chapter applies to men of any age.
On a personal note:
During a challenging period in my life I tried some vasodilators. They seemed to work at first, but then didn’t work at all. I asked my doctor if he had given me a placebo. He said, “No, but you still have to have sexual desire.” When I got other important parts of my life and mindset back on track, my sexual life came back with a vengeance, even in my sixties!
A cautionary note: Vasodilators (Viagra, Cialis, etc.) don’t just target your genitals. They affect your entire vascular system. This is why men have aneurisms and heart attacks, increased hemorrhoids, etc. These drugs also can create damaging indigestion, headaches, memory loss and other symptoms resembling drunkenness including the bursting red veins of rosacea on your nose and face. They may be fun to try, but in a moderate dose and certainly not as a regular long-term fix. Tantric exploration will get you further and with more enduring satisfying results and a healthier mindset about sex in general.