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Copyright 2000/Erin Starr

QUESTION: When should I start having sex with my new boyfriend? We've been going out for nearly two months now, and I'm afraid I'll lose him if I don't have sex with him. We've gotten into heavy petting and masturbation with each other, but he wants more. I'm a virgin, and I want to have sex, but I'm not sure that it's the right time, and I haven't known him long.


ANSWER: I can hear your hesitation and concern. This is a big decision for you. Probably some of your friends are moving into the realm of intercourse, and you don't want to be left behind. But is this the right time?

My heart goes out to you, because there's not much support for discipline and self control now. TV, magazines and music all carry so many deep promises of sexual bliss -- but the instruction given is usually just technical, gymnastic in a way -- the feelings of the soul go untouched.

I sense that it is your soul asking me this question. Let me ask you a few questions.

First, what do you mean by "having sex?" It sounds to me like you've been having sex already, but without intercourse.

You have to ask yourself how much your virginity means to you. And what do you know about your boyfriend, his background, where he works, who his parents are, how he feels about relationship and what his awareness is of the mystic bond between a woman and a man?

Does your boyfriend understand the history of woman and her suffering at the hands of dominating cultures who believed men to be superior? Does he know how to let you be the guide in your relationship? Does he acknowledge feminine wisdom? Have you even asked?

If you want to share your virginity with him in the ceremony of sacred sex, ask yourself if you're ready to have your boyfriend's karma become part of your body and soul. Intercourse with him, on the mystical level of tantra, will be like injecting his karma into you, and yours into him. Did you know that? His past sexual actions will be merged with your energy when his vajra (penis) enters your padme (vagina). And I'm not only talking aboutpast sexual actions that might bring a history of sexually-transmitted diseases into your life. I'm talking about his whole being -- body, mind, heart, soul. He becomes part of you, acccording to the Mystic Way. And you become part of him. Even if your boyfriend is a virgin, which I doubt, it's still true that his karma and yours become one karma.

Intercourse is a sacred blending of yin and yang polarities. A woman's padme is her mystical temple. Have respect. Know your own worth.

Here's a mystic practice for you. It'll help you to make yourdecision. Flip a coin! (nah nah just kidding -- we mystics need a sense of humor, or we'd be solemn all the time -- although, if you do flip a coin and are disappointed at the outcome, that might tell you something). Actually, on the serious side, because yours is a serious question and one close to my heart...here's a mystic practice that I use a lot myself when I want answers to questions such as yours that are deep and disturbing. Pretend you're sitting in your bedroom with an angel. This angel is smiling and calm. She is your guardian angel. Ask the angel the same question you just asked me. Visualize your angel listening to you. See her clearly (or him). Now let the angel answer you. Dialogue with the angel. Speak on, asking and listening. This angel is a reflection of the more conscious and awake part of you, and will come to you whenever you are call her, if you open your heart.

Are you sexually full of desire? There are many ways to satisfy that desire without intercourse, as you've been discovering with mutual masturbation. Here's an exercise to channel that sexual energy into a healing energy. Squeeze and release your vaginal and anal muscles. Breathe in as you squeeze, and breathe out as you release. Now visualize an orange light traveling up your spine to your head, with each squeeze. Let more and more orange light travel up until your head is filled with it and almost glowing. Now smile and feel the contentment.

Let me give you a little history lesson. You may know this, so forgive me if I'm repeating what you already have heard.In some cultures, long ago, older men and women with a knowledge of sacred sex were chosen by the temple priests and priestesses to initiate the younger women and men into sexuality. To be their first sexual partners. What do I think of that idea? Well...I like the more modern approach of initiating yourself with someone you know, love and have chosen yourself.

I do believe in the value of ceremony, however. That's what the wedding ceremony and conjugal night used to be all about.

Sometimes it even helps to let that desire build.In some ancient cultures, kissing was for the wedding night, petting for the next night, and intercourse for the third night.

But those days are gone. We're in modern times. You have to look out for yourself.

Many boys and men lose interest once they've "scored." It's an unfortunate result of thousands of years of misunderstanding between women and men. Don't be pushed into anything you'll regret, no matter how much your body and mind are pulling you toward it. Be sure that your soul is engaged in the decision also. It's a precious choice you have to make. And it IS your choice, not his. This is every woman's choice, virgin or not.

Your boyfriend has made his position clear to you, has he not? My intuition tells me that you're not his first lover, not by a long shot. Is he willing to take on the responsibility of opening you up to womanhood? Or will you be just another notch on his belt? Is he as confused as you are?

I have another question for you, as if you don't have enough to consider. Here goes. Are you trying to just "get it over with?" Some girls think that way. Virginity is a burden to them. Many boys feel that way about their own virginity. A virgin boy? By all means. Virginity is more than physical. Please regard your virginity as a special gift you can share with only one man. It's not really "giving" your virginity to the man of your choice. It's a mutual sharing. Be sure he's the man you want to share your special time with.

In the Temple-Virgin times, hundreds of years ago, there were certain educated priestesses of the tantric church who healed men of the soul's illnesses through sexuality. Particularly after battle. Men went to the Temple Virgins before they went home to their own wives after war. These women had intercourse with many men over the years, in sacred ritual, but these "Temple Whores" as they were called were still regarded as virgins. How could this be? It was because virginity meant a state of purity, not just a hymen stretched across a vagina. These women were worshipped. They were "Sacred Prostitutes."

A strange thought nowadays. It sounds like an oxymoron. But it was considered reasonable in those times. They were known as compassionate and wise physicians. They used sex for healing, along with herbs and the angels of Nature. They were trained from childhood for this art. Nowadays, virginity is not renewable for most of us. Temple Whores may still exist, but I don't know where.

You know from personal experience how you can care a lot about a person and then have those feelings change. If your boyfriend says that he loves you, he may mean it today, especially in the heat of passion. But will he mean it tomorrow or next month?

These are not pretty questions or easy ones to contemplate, but contemplate them anyway. It's up to you. Do you love him?

Do you know his mind? Or are you only exploring his body, his fun personality? Mystic sex embraces the whole being of a person -- body, mind, heart and soul. Dark side and light side.

I may sound like an old wet blanket, but there isn't much fun in the heartbreak, loneliness and disease that can accompany an unwise decision regarding sex.

Sexuality can be a wonderfully creative adventure -- an enlightening and healing adventure. Just be sure you're prepared and know where you're going.

You say that you're afraid you'll lose him if you don't have sex with him? Respect your right to say no. Or yes. The woman is the guide, in Mystic Sex. You're probably curious about what intercourse will feel like. He seems special right now. Ask yourself if he's someone you could trust to care for you, if you were ill or in emotional pain. Do you know him well enough to know the answer to that question? If you don't, it's not yet time to entrust him with your temple.

If he'll leave you because you don't have intercourse, what does that tell you about him? Don't treat your body lightly. It houses your soul. I'm glad you've taken the time to ask me about this decision.

Are you ready to have his baby? If your baby were a boy, would you like your son to be like your new boyfriend? Ask yourself these questions, and then get back to me. Don't tell me that you're on the pill and can't get pregnant. That's not what I'm asking. Breathe deeply. Be well. Stay true to yourself.

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