Temple of the Red Lotus Vending Tent

Temple of the Red Lotus Vending Tent
See us at pagan festivals in the SouthEast!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Sacred Warrior Harlots

Sacred Warrior Harlots
Inara de Luna, Temple of the Red Lotus (C) 2007

Sex is a very powerful force. Many who use sex in magic and ritual recommend that it NOT be used by those new to magic or the Craft, because of the amount of power generated by the sex act. For millenia, church officials and political authorities have made laws and moral guidelines intended to contain the power unleashed by sex.

Unfortunately, these laws and guidelines, written from fear and the desire for control, have had an opposite effect. Rather than suppressing the sex drive and its associated effects, these policies and practices of control, oppression and minimization have actually increased the problems. Rather than educating and training people about their sexuality, we have given them loaded guns with no instructions on how to shoot, or the ethical framework to decide who and when to shoot. People are ruled by "instinctive" drives, which they are taught to be ashamed of, and so they seek to satisfy these urges quietly, furtively, guiltily, and often non-responsibly.

I believe that sex and sexuality are inherently sacred. Sex and pleasure are gifts from the Gods and Goddesses. When we use these gifts in negative, malicious ways, when we engage in sex in exclusively self-serving ways, we devalue, desecrate and contaminate those gifts. In my mind, things like rape are not sex, they're violence. Rapists may use sex as a tool, but the intent and effect is violent.

Yes, this world is quite bereft of the joy, wonder, sweetness and sacredness of sex. Yes, we see a LOT of sex desecrated all around us, from the media and advertising, to the use of rape as a tool of terror in war, to the unhappy and neglected and abused people in relationships everywhere who don't know any better way to be.

And that is where the modern Qadishti or Sacred Whores or Temple Harlots come in. We are uniquely positioned to start changing the world, one embrace at a time. We, who understand the awesome power and sanctity of sexuality, have the responsibility to pass along that understanding to whoever else might be ready to listen. We, who are capable of channeling the Goddess and using her gifts of love and pleasure to heal, have a responsibility to heal the wounded souls, hearts and bodies of those sad, broken, hurting people who come before us. We, who feel overwhelming compassion and love for those who have been neglected and abused by the system and society, have a responsibility to share that compassion and love with others, in an attempt to overturn the thousands of years of suffering this world has endured.

It's not easy. It's a difficult path to follow, for many, many reasons. We will get discouraged. We will get frustrated. We may suffer misunderstandings and sabotage in our efforts. But we must be Warriors, as well as Lovers, resolutely standing by our beliefs that Love can indeed change, and maybe save, the world. We must invoke both sides of the Deities of Love and War. Learning to temper our need to stand resolute with our capacity for compassion is tricky, but it can be done. We can be passive resistors, conscious objectors, role models, activists. We can stand firm in our principles and patiently endure the coming years of darkness and oppression, while our Light grows and our influence finally begins to shift things to a healthier, more sacred place, where sex, pleasure and love are ultimately revered and treasured as the gifts they truly are.

Knowing that what I do and who I am carries a sacred charge helps me shoulder the load. Before I found the concept of the qadishtu or sacred prostitute, I experienced great internal conflict about who and what I was and what I perceived I *should* be based on the larger society's expectations. I am now at peace within myself, although a battle still rages without. I choose to take this head-on by creating my Temple and my various discussion groups. By taking every opportunity to speak to people about the possibilities and promises of sacred sexuality. By subscribing to $pread magazine to support their great work. By any of a number of other little things, I choose every day to confront the issues of our world around sexuality, including prostitutes' rights. By engaging in these things which uphold my values, I maintain integrity and attain serenity with my chosen life, so that I can handle the storms and sacrifices this calling demands. Like I said above, it's not easy....but it's oh soooo worth it!


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