From Lust to Sexuality

It was a bit surprising when a twenty-something ‘y' generation young man approached me and was asking my advice on getting laid. Let’s call him Ted. I had known Ted for a few years now and would have thought that he would looked for this kind of advice from among his peer group, maybe by starting the conversation with: “Yo, when was the last time you got laid?"

All jokes aside, I looked at him and I could tell he was serious. Concerned that Ted felt he may be a real looser, my thoughts turn to what could have brought him to this point? Could it be he was just not informed? Then again, could it be that Ted had discovered feelings of sexual fluidity within himself?  Was he asking because he was going from asexuality to full-on sexual expression? Or was he interested in one of the other alphabet letters of sexuality that he might want to try? Whatever it was, I felt it best not to ask but to keep to his question.

I had to think about my years of sexual activity and perhaps share realizations I’d come to with him, such as - “The more I think I know, the less I really know about this ever changing activity.” That being said, I decided to stay with his scenario and try and flush out some of the gaps in his thinking or lessen the possibility for rejection in his encounters.

So I asked Ted what he was really looking to gain from his sexual exploits.

  1. Was he looking to become an orgasmic human vibrator, looking for any Human intake orifice for solo or participatory pleasure be it after drunk dialing or being bored with porn or Netflix or just because they like to do it.

  2. Being a -FWB (friend with benefits) to a person that wants no strings but who wants to enjoy his company.

  3. Building a causal relationship of sex that moves beyond friends to lovers.

  4. Looking for a committed relationship or life partner.

  5. He was tired of masturbating alone.

I suggested that once Ted decided what he was after from his hook-ups he would then consider what the other person desired or wanted from the encounter, which may mean doing things he hadn’t considered doing to get the payout he wanted. Also, to keep in mind that he or the other person could always change their mind as to how often and long this would last. Lastly the importance of keeping a friendly dialogue going with yourself and the partner to have no ugly surprises.

Ted threw out some lame-ass goal from off the top of his head, for immediate gratification that he could see in his mind’s eye. I did suggest spending some time with himself alone considering his choice and his options in regards to repeating the act, his future sense of fulfillment, and gaining happiness.

Ted being a science geek, I reminded him, too, of a principle of quantum physics, which is that our thoughts determine reality. Early in the 1900s they proved this beyond a shadow of a doubt with an experiment called the double slit experiment. They found that the determining factor of the behavior of energy (‘particles’) at the quantum level is the awareness of the observer. The consciousness of the observer in this query was Ted.

Our reality, I assured him, does not exist in a place outside of us, but rather within. It infuses all matter and energy, connecting every person, everything from a ray of light to a bit of cosmic dust. I think it is absolutely clear that we must start to consider ourselves as more than a physical body and more like the fusion of our thoughts, emotions, beliefs, and intentions, which I call the human sensuous energy field.

Sorry, I strayed. I asked Ted to consider his chances for success in sustaining having good sex. He pressed me further. I suggested that he consider the importance in the difference between the fantasy about his performance during sex, that which we create in our imagination (which, no matter how you look at it, is going to be far better than the performances that we can actually give, or worse, expect a partner to perform).

Anybody that has had regular sex can attest that the best sex they have had has always been conjured up in their head either alone or with a partner, rather than the actuality of their technique alone. In sex's defense I do have to say, that the worse sex you can have is better than no sex, in my option.

Ted came around, and he agreed that the best sex for most people is with someone with whom they have a sense of shared trust and perhaps an unacknowledged attraction. They’ve probably met at work or a party or through friends. They’ve seen each other at the same events, or gym or favorite sports venue, or their favorite bar. After a while some kind of affinity with this person is created, and you can figure they fit into some wider category of friends. Sex happens as a combustion of thought. Someone having met and interacted socially could start to wonder, what it would be like to be the person to get it on with Ted?

I prodded Ted into telling me what he thought his next step should be, which turn out to be his letting go of his imagined expectation and inadequacies (about looks, penis size and performance) for something tangible. That next step, or tangibility, was for him to voice an intention to the other person to actually go out together. Ah yes I said, but consider that you are not asking them out not for sex, but for fun.

To enjoy each other’s company. To get to know each other’s moods. As humans we learn in the exploration of play; having fun is a way of adding to our knowledge. In this case adding to the knowledge Ted would gain about this other person without the messy investment of feelings or getting hurt or rejection. Allowing Ted a safety zone for playful interaction where he could, if he liked, strut and flirt and observe the reactions of his intended, giving Ted a gauge of if or when the time is right to make his move towards the bedroom and, if he had chosen the right person for this situation would they go for it too? I suggested another benefit is that he could develop a friendship along the way with this other person even if either or both of them went on to other relationships.

He protested and said this was not about finding his dream partner. This was about getting laid.

I could sense in his conversation that he felt I had strayed from goal. Like many men he craves intimacy but fears rejection, getting hurt, clinging vines, or strings. To get him back on track I suggested that for men looking for free, no-strings-attached sex, sex for the sport of it, that he might want to try one of those hook-up sex sites. Ted looked shocked, for I had removed sex from its prescribed context. He protested that he needed to know something about the other person first.

I said ‘I have your attention again, good. Let me put it in your terms – You want to get laid, and to hit it more than one time, and especially if it is good.’ For this to happen, it is going to require both your heads to be working. The need to be conscious and to pay attention for the point of all of this is to ensure that you have a relatively frequent booty call. So if you actually want a relatively frequent booty call, and you want to be the person that is called, you need to put some effort into it, both in and out of the bed. It is about more than arousal, or the discharge of relief, Ted; it is realizing you can be the one they call for mutual orgasm rather than your singular masturbation.

It has to begin with a person you like and have respect for. This is at the start, during and after the experience. If you leave someone feeling shitty in any way, the chances of that next phone call coming is greatly reduced. Remember that person is the one you enjoy and can joke around with. The situation after sex has changed, but you may now have a deeper insight into your Being, a fuller understanding of your facets and capabilities.

Be clear about your arrangement, what is it, and what it is not: a hook-up, a movement within a relationship, a committed relationship. Whatever it is, be clear through real communication that you are on track. Awareness and communication increases good sex frequency for the both of you, without entering into territories that can ruin the friendship. Work to ensure the essence of your friendship stays the same, with increased incremental bits of change or fun. Don’t call or text more. Don’t call or text less. Don’t read into or assume you know the other person’s mind without communication and checking. This will prevent you calling yourself just a hook-up, or a boyfriend, or a lover or whatever prematurely.  If you find yourself doing that, the problem is you, and you will likely find you don’t have the chops to pull this kind of thing off. Just be yourself. Your intended has already known that guy (you) for a while now, and will like that guy (you) just the right amount, so don’t mess with a good thing.

Ted, I say, there is no intercourse without the fusion of Love in some kind of shape or expression. It will be different with each person and, Ted, your sexual orientation (what you think) goes further in determining the quality of satisfaction in those sexual activities than technique ever can. The mind’s orientation can resist the fact that we all have a choice between having the life we want or creating the reasons why we can’t have that life.

Consciously or not, Ted, people think about hopes and dreams for themselves in terms that go beyond the hook-ups. The true orgasm is the combustible fusion of our thoughts, emotions, beliefs, and intentions - that sensuous human energy field perpetually informing the quantum reality within us and around us at each moment of our existence. It is not sex fully engaged without the igniting sensuous fusion of Love, and even better still if found in its highest form called Agape.

After our conversation, Ted left. In watching him walk away his head was held higher, his steps more assured. Ted realized that speaking to me was not to discourage his desire for sex, but to make it better by enlarging his concept of it and perhaps himself.

The fact that society is starting to have more open discussions about sex is good. The scope and depth of sexual desire isn’t something that can be done in a thousand or so words. But I hope it will be enough to have people engaging in enlarging the concept, firing up the male and female principles within all of us to rethink the fundamental level of reality and the restructuring of our beliefs and expectations about Love and sexual release.

Bringing it down to basics, we are all some form of energy field, and there is infinite potential in that energy. It is entirely up to us as to what we choose to manifest out of that field in our bodies and lives.

Whatever we do let’s make it good sex.

Masculine Archetypes

Many thanks to my long-time colleague Richard Hartnett for the following post.

Today a great football coach gave his resignation speech from an organization that he had been a part of for 15 years. At several points in his presentation, he had to stop because he was overwhelmed with emotion.   It was obvious that he loved his job, loved the men who played for him and loved the people he worked for. This moment was a stark contrast from his departure from the previous organization where he coached. When he was fired by that organization it was due in large part because his players hated his “hard ass attitude”. What had changed this man into a sensitive and honorable man?   The shift for this man started when one of his players came up to him and said, “I love you coach”. That simple statement compelled him to reconsider the profound influence of his position.  

It may seem strange to find deep emotions expressed in a game that is essentially a forum for violence. Yet, it starts to make sense when you understand the intention of this coach changed from simply being focused on winning to developing character in each of his players that would not only motivate them to win, it would become the cornerstone of the success in their lives beyond football. Football has always been a place where men are given the opportunity to develop their warrior nature. Like it or not, it is essential that we have a healthy warrior nature. It is one of the four important masculine archetypes.

Courtesy John Martinez Pavliga, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 license

The abuses of our masculine warrior nature have brought forth a significant amount of scorn from those who were previously oppressed and exploited by it.   This persecution of the masculine is understandable. There is still way too much violence caused by men. It is necessary that we challenge our bad behavior, but as is often the case, we assume that we must get rid of masculinity completely rather than master its expression. Masculinity is not the problem; the problem is the distorted expression of masculinity.   Distortion is a consequence of not fully understanding an archetype.  

To begin to understand masculinity must first ask, “What is an archetype?” an archetype is a universal energy that we must all deal with in one form or another. Each archetype has specific characteristics and each offers unique skills and talents to master. Each of the archetypes, challenge us to learn about ourselves, and our place in the greater reality of our universe. In order to be successful in life, one must come to understand these influences if not outright master their use. Working with archetypes is something we all do because archetypes are universal.

There are four key Masculine archetypes. They are: The King, the Warrior, the Magician and the Lover. Each represents an important vehicle for assertive masculine expression. If you want to fully understand these archetypes, I would strongly recommend reading the book, “The King, The Magician, the Warrior and the Lover” by Robert Moore and Douglas Gillette.

Archetypes are influences that exist in all cultures but have different images and names associated with them. Rulers are called kings, presidents, sultans, emperors, chiefs, lords, sovereigns, and even potentates. The archetype represents the common elements that all rulers share. All cultures have stories about the qualities and characteristics that rulers have. Each Ruler may be different in how their power is applied but they all share in common that they are the Ruler of their kingdom. The archetype represents the essence of rulership itself. All Rulers will fall short in their application of ruling because they have to deal with the challenges of this limited material world and because our understanding of the archetype of rulership is still evolving. It's important to recognize that no matter how successful any Ruler might be, there will always be more to learn. This is equally true for the warrior archetype as well as the others.

The book, by Moore and Gillette, explains both the appropriate and distorted expressions of each of the archetypes. Now that concept alone makes the book worthwhile. You will find a great deal more in this book that will help you to understand masculinity in all its forms.

One of the key concepts these gentlemen convey is that distortion has two forms of expression. Either we can express too much or too little of an archetype. Each is equally toxic but for opposite reasons. This coach was initially guilty of applying too much masculine aggressive behavior, yet it would be equally dysfunctional for him to apply too little. Somewhere in his transition into the second organization he began to find a healthy balance.

A coach is for all intensive purposes the embodiment of the King archetype.  He rules his players who embody the warrior archetype. One of the functions of a king is to convey a purpose to motivate the warrior. The key difference between an appropriate warrior and an inappropriate mercenary is their motivation. A warrior serves a higher cause, which in this case is the pursuit of excellence. While a mercenary fights for no other cause than to serve himself; whether it’s his desire for fame or money, his behavior is always selfish.  A mercenary has little regard for his opponent, the integrity of the game or even how his behavior affects his teammates.  There is a great deal of mercenary behavior going on in professional sports.  Yet, every once in awhile you hear about someone such as this coach who rises above the limitations of the past and brings forth a new understanding of an archetype. Every man who struggles to find his place in the world needs to understand that these archetypes are always in the background influencing the events of our lives.  It is always in our best interest to study and to master the appropriate expression of an archetype.  To ignore them does not make them go away, to persecute them only drives them underground where their expression ends up coming out in a distorted or perverted way.

This forum is devoted to the exploration of masculinity.   You will find that studying masculinity will transform your life in ways that you cannot imagine.  I encourage all men to read the aforementioned book and to celebrate their manhood by finding the best way to become a man of integrity.  Our greatest hope for the redemption of our society is to find the proper motivation for our masculine expressions.  Yet, we must always remember to honor and respect the feminine in all of its forms while we are expressing our masculinity.  Finding our appropriate motivation by serving a higher purpose than selfish desires, will transform not only our world, it will transform our relation with ourselves.  Let us all find the way to walk forward together as newly evolved men into a brave new world.

Send email to Richard at; visit his website He produces video lectures on YouTube, and you can find him on Facebook.

Life Coaching: The Razor's Edge of Mentoring

This post could also be titled as “The Catch-22 of Telling People What to Do.” For in my work with people, topics such as


seem to come up all the time. Also questions such as :

“Am I in the right job for me?”

"Should I marry this person?"

"What can I do to make my body look better?”

“Is this a better career choice for me to make the money?”

In my practice of helping people come to their sense of Holistic Living these are just a few of the typical questions I tend to receive from clients who come to me for insight into the workings of their lives.

Years ago, in the 1980s, which were in my early days of working with clients in the use of self-help classes, one such course I designed and taught was the male-oriented Grooming Dynamics course (which to my surprise and delight worked equally well with female clients).  Back then I would have done my damnedest to answer such questions as those posed above and done it with some sort of definitive “yes” or “no” response. After all, these people were paying me for that type of advice, right? 

Over the years, an evolution and maturity have taken place in my practices of Life Coaching and Mentoring. With expanded listening techniques I now find myself being subtler, more cautious, in my answers and, I hope, more responsible in my approach toward my duties as a Mentor / Coach, for I’ve thought long and hard about what these duties really entail. Such as: Am I truly there (as a Mentor / Coach) to make up my clients’ minds for them concerning significant life decisions? More importantly, perhaps: What are the real consequences – for both the client and myself – of saying things that could alter a person’s life forever? As tempting as it may sometimes be to “help” a person through a genuinely difficult period, there is a thin line between truly helpful counsel and unwise interference with another person’s destiny.

I can think of an example that may show what I mean: Many years ago, a friend called to say he was signing up to join the Peace Corps and within the next few months would be traveling with a group through South America. He had never set foot outside the United States, so he was eagerly looking forward to this opportunity and began preparing for his trip. Just out of curiosity, and without telling him, I decided to check international news sources to find out what I could about the current situations in those countries – and was somewhat uncomfortable to find a host of challenging diplomatic, political, and / or military challenges occurring that could impact him while he was on this trip. Yes, there was the matter of safety that was being addressed by the Peace Corps, but by and large it was the sort of backdrop I myself would probably have avoided were I planning a trip and had this information.

What to do? My first reaction was to do the “altruistic” thing by telling him what I had found and then go on a volunteered rant of my advice on the matter, hopefully sparing him the problems of a potentially terrible trip. A few days later, before I had the chance to tell him what I found, he came in so excited about his plans, what it meant to his future, on and on . . . . His words caused me to take a step back from revealing my intel and to think about words that I have heard from many sources before, “Never volunteer advice or teaching uninvited.” These were words that seemed so timely in that situation. It made me reflect all the more deeply on my tendency to offer counsel to friends or family even when it wasn’t asked for.  So I buttoned my lip and wished him the best trip possible.

Well, as it turned out, my friend’s trip proved to be a life-changing experience in ways neither of us could have foreseen. While he was in one of those remote regions of South America, a local villager had an accident and suffered serious injuries; my friend, who had already gone through American Red Cross basic first aid training and had a working knowledge of the Spanish language, became involved in the life-saving efforts until medical assistance could arrive. The scene, I could imagine, was one filled with chaos and anxiety. Yet for my friend this experience marked a key turning point in his life. Not only did it bring him into contact with an aspect of a foreign culture he wouldn’t have experienced otherwise, but it also served as a catalyst for his becoming more involved with humanitarian activities on a global scale. And there was a slim chance none of this would have even happened had I opened my mouth and volunteered my sage opinion.

A Fine Line

Since then, I’ve attempted to be much more conscious of how and when I go about freely dispensing advice to people. But what if a client asks me for advice on a major life decision? Does that violate a principle of noninterference?

If it becomes as strong a question as to send a flag up my emotional pole, then I have to stop and ask myself, “What then would my motivations for giving the advice be?” Sometimes giving advice makes a counselor, or Mentor, or Coach feel important and knowledgeable, but then the advice becomes ineffective. Sometimes it may even foster a non-therapeutic dependency such that the client does not learn how to solve problems himself or herself but merely how to ask for more advice. The sage saying, “Teach a man to fish,” comes to mind.

My goal with my clients is to be consciously nondirective. After all, who among us is truly wise enough to know all the ramifications of any given situation, whether acted upon or not? I know that no human is omniscient. We certainly cannot know all the variables of any situation, so we need to approach our discipline with a certain humility regarding our own grasp of “what is best” – or what isn’t.

I find myself asking more and more if a certain experience should be avoided simply because it may prove physically or emotionally difficult? How can we really know for sure what lessons a person might need to learn from a certain challenging situation? The history pages are filled with challenged individuals whose lives were changed – or whose lives, in turn, changed the world – by seemingly difficult experiences. Much as I hate to admit it, I fear that, 40 years ago, I probably would have done all I could to steer such a person away from potentially difficult situations.

So we find ourselves on the Razor's Edge as to what is the solution. Do we simply refrain entirely from giving advice or pointing the client in one direction or another?

Not necessarily. But first we realize that we cannot think about the clients questions from the viewpoint of our own values and well-being. The question has to be reframed.

First, I try to remember that I am consciously playing a role. My role could be as simple as a passenger in a car with a map on my lap of the destination. The driver of the car (the client) has come to a fork in the road. I can point out the different prongs in the forked road, with the amount of miles each has, as well as curves, hills, switchbacks, and scenic views each would have, but it is ultimately the driver that must decide which course to take.

Secondly I and the client are in a state of conscious investigation of our Emotional Intelligence. (That is, coming to recognize the part emotions play in the decision-making process and how that play of emotions might have unconscious factors attached that affect decisions in thoughts and behavior.)

Thirdly, I provide my clients with strategies for how to come to the Truth of their problems. I am not there to make up my clients’ minds for them, nor to tell them how to live their lives; rather, it’s to draw out of them accurate information vs. unconscious playback loops of what they believe to be best: help them make their own decisions by drawing out their own inner wisdom and intuition in situations.

An example to illustrate how this might work is: An individual comes to me, tells me he is an A-Type personality and asks whether he should marry someone who, it turns out, is also a heavily A-Type personality. Taking a simplistic and judgmental approach, I might well look at this situation and tell him that two A-type individuals forming a partnership could make for a fairly competitive or volatile combination and, for that reason, might best be avoided. But taking a more nondirective, non-coercive approach, I could instead engage the client in what he is looking for from this relationship. I could ask the client to point out the potential problems he could encounter along with the potential perks that could arise from such a union. Indeed, such competition and or volatility might prove to be the very thing that a given individual might want in a relationship. Once clarified it is the client’s decision as to which way to go with it.

I can recall hearing my teacher say: “If you want to end a relationship with such and such person, simply stop arguing with them. They’ll get bored and go search out someone else to do battle with!” The key here is not to tell the client what to do, but merely help to illuminate his choices.

Helping Clients Help Themselves

The other point I want to make, which is many times so simple or apparent that it is disregarded, is best illustrated by a quote from Douglas Adams, who said, “I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.” Which is in keeping with the conversation between Alice and the Cheshire Cat, those fictional characters from the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

Alice asks the Cat “Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”

“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.

“I don’t much care where–” said Alice.

“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.

“–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,” Alice added as an explanation.

“Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.”

There is no such thing as the one right choice. It is more to do with the uniqueness of each of us. We must learn to get to know and then honor our authentic selves; then comes a realization that at the root of the things we desire is the authentic self within. It is that driver, that evolutionary impulse that has driven humanity forward and expresses within us, through us, and as us; that spark that drives us to want to be ourselves and know ourselves through the symbols of our desires. Decoding the symbols leads us to who we are meant to be. This is the only way we can ever find true happiness and fulfillment.

In some ways, even more importantly: My job as an Ontologically-based consultant is to help clients to get in touch with their own reserves of intuition in situations and to draw upon those reserves when making their decisions regarding these situations. Like our fairytale characters Alice and the Cheshire Cat these archetype symbols prove a useful analogy. The symbol is never really intended to simply answer questions about major life decisions, but rather to provide a series of metaphorical images that could serve to unlock an individual’s own inner wisdom regarding those problems. By reflecting on a symbol that arises in response to a question, one begins to understand the hidden dynamics underlying everyday situations.

Archetype symbols have been with us for centuries, in every culture and on every continent.  There is profound wisdom contained within them, that draws on unconscious resources about life or our hidden talents - if we could but learn to trust and tap into them by slowing down the mind chatter to accept this input when contemplating a decision; to be aware, to listen for that certain “yes!” whispering from deep within as you contemplate your options. More often than not, I find that people already know at an intuitive level the right thing to do – they’re just looking for an outside confirmation of that inner knowing.

How I’ve come to see my role as Mentor in the lives of people who come to me for advice or insight is to realize that each person that I engage with has a unique life, as vivid and complex as my own, with their own calling, which is a calling demanding to be drawn out and realized by them.

The stance I take regarding my role in this process isn’t popular with every one of my clients, especially those who are looking for someone to take responsibility for their lives. But with each passing year I’m convinced that this is the wisest approach both for them and myself. It leaves me with a clearer conscience about my impact on others’ lives and in my own role as a Mentor / Coach.