Psychology
06 Nov 2018

It isn't about the quantity, it's about the quality

The Kama Sutra and other texts can offer interested couples 300 different positions to try -- one for every day of the year -- ready to get started?

Wysokie Obcasy
Paulina Reiter Wysokie Obcasy, Global
It isn't about the quantity, it's about the quality - NewsMavens
Rope Knot, PixaBay

The following fragments from Paulina Reiter’s interview with sexologist Dr Alicja Długołęcka first appeared in the Polish weekly “Wysokie Obcasy” in  January 2016.

Dr Alicja Długołęcka: The “Roc soaring over the Dark Sea” -- what does it make you think of?

Paulina Reiter: Sex?

Good! It’s one of the Taoist sexual positions. The “Soaring Roc” refers to a man, and the “Dark sea” represents a woman. “She lies on her back. He puts her feet on his upper arms and stretches his hands down to clasp her waist. Then he inserts his jade stalk.”

PR: Sounds beautiful. What book is that?

“Sexual Reflexology: Activating the Taoist Points of Love”. It’s hard to determine how faithful this publication really is to Taoism, but there are plenty of beautifully described positions here. You said you’d like to chat about sexual practices today, so I thought we might find it useful.

PR: Because we’ve been talking about sex for so many years, yet we never discussed sexual techniques.

Well, it’s high time we did! In our culture we have a few commonly known positions: the missionary, sideways or woman-on-top -- or varying aspects of these, while The Kama sutra, Tantra, Taoism and other such texts distinguish about 300 positions -- a different one for every day of the year.

Tantric techniques concentrate on sexual adjustment and the stimulation of certain energy centers in the body, such as the feet, breasts or back. They also emphasize the sequence of ejaculation -- the woman should always peak first as she’s the one capable of multiple orgasms. Taoism, on the other hand, focuses on the genitals and on the exchange of physiological fluids, poetically described as “the exchange of life-giving, complementary energies”.

Studying these theories became incredibly popular in 70s and 80s. However, the sexual liberation that took place in western countries at that time was mainly based on discarding religious and moral codes that restrained sexual expression.

PR: In other words -- liberation from the missionary position.

More like moving away from an ideology that glorified the human soul while denouncing our physical needs as wicked and sinister. This approach did a lot of damage to people’s perception of their own physique.

We really should learn to listen to our body more carefully and pay less attention to rules, patterns and theories imposed from the outside.

Sadly, our culture still specializes in building physical and sexual walls, especially with regards to women. Although, if we’re talking about sexual techniques, males don’t have it easy either.

PR: Why is that?

Socially, men are granted more liberty but they’re also taught to take responsibility for the technical side of sexual intercourse and consequently, disregard the spiritual aspect of sex.

We -- women -- are reminded of our physiology more often than men, through our menstrual cycle, pregnancy and childbirth. Nature treats guys far more mercifully. When men discover sexual pleasure it comes quite simply -- as part of adolescence -- with no need to analyze or contemplate it, they just enjoy it. Pretty convenient, huh?

PR: Is reading sexual handbooks worthwhile?

It is, and I suggest it to couples who love and consciously satisfy each other. Although they should remember that flicking through a few illustrations and descriptions won’t guarantee a sexual earthquake. We all know that erotic sensations depend on our psychological attitude.

The stimulation we feel during kissing will be more intense if, apart from touching our partner’s lips, we touch their soul as well.

PR: Isn’t our pleasure affected more by our connection than by our technique?

Learning different sexual techniques can be an expression of love too. Many couples try new positions because they want to strengthen their emotional and physical bond. Certain positions stimulate certain body areas -- if we do not rush and try to communicate in bed, we’ll be able to cherry-pick them accordingly to achieve the pleasure we want to experience.

PR: What is “White Tiger Jumping” ?

It’s the classic position from the back. The woman surrenders to the male energy -- submitting herself to her partner symbolically and physically.

PR: In “Sexual Reflexology” our classic, missionary position is called “Somersaulting Dragons”, why?

Because the dragon is one of the most noble and spiritual creatures.

“The woman lies on her back with the man prostrate on top of her, pressing her thighs into the bed. She opens herself to receive his jade stalk. He thrusts at her grain seed and attacks also the upper part with leisurely, deliberate strokes. Eight shallow, two deep. The jade stalk goes in dead and returns alive, so that he grows vigorous and powerful. She is agitated and pleased, joyous like a singsong girl.”

It may sound silly, but it makes sense!

Every position teaches us something new -- it can help us determine our role in the relationship or let us discover some previously unknown facts about ourselves.

It might turn out that we need intimacy more than we thought or that we enjoy being dominated. Or that switching roles with our partner is what excites us the most.

PR: Can you think of any common misconceptions we have about sex?

Among men, it’s a tendency to value quantity over quality. They focus on the number of positions and forget about the emotional sense of each of these techniques. What is more, burdened by the responsibility for their and their partner’s satisfaction, they get nervous and completely neglect the spiritual aspect of the intercourse.

If I were to educate men, I would start with the question: “What’s the point of these positions? Ask your woman how this position affects her! Watch her body, and see how it reacts.”

Some of us enjoy oral sex but others may find it disgusting. It’s all relative and changeable. A position that doesn’t seem to work for us today, could become our favourite in a month or two. There are no strict rules.

We need to be open-minded and listen to our body -- it will tell us what kinds of affection we enjoy the most.

Women have plenty of misconceptions, too. Most of us are obsessed with being judged. But in order to enjoy sex we must first accept ourselves and our physique. A bed is not a place for an aesthetic evaluation. If we enter a relationship, we can’t treat our body as a piece of clothing.

Men who love their partners often say that a woman who doesn’t care about her sweat, tousled hair and a few fat folds in bed is the most attractive, because she’s devoted, natural, passionate and cheerful. I think it’s time we all stopped worrying about smeared make-up or a few extra kilograms and released our inner (somersaulting) dragon.

***

Alicja Długołęcka is a Polish sexologist and the author of “Seks na Wysokich Obcasach” (Sex on High Heels). She’s a lecturer at the Department of Psychotherapy and Sexual Rehabilitation at Jósef Piłsudski University of Physical Education in Warsaw.

Translated from Polish by Martyna Kardach

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