Sex, Intimacy & Awakening: The One Thing that Changes After You Wake Up

It’s about six weeks before the overnight spontaneous awakening of October 23, 2011. I am sitting cross-legged on the floor next to my husband among several rows of seekers here to see a female spiritual teacher named Ganga-gi. He has put up his hand for a question and she is listening quietly as he speaks.

“I’m trying to understand the connection between sex and intimacy,” he says.

It’s not so much a question as it is a set of interconnected themes that interest and confuse him. You see, our sex life has been a challenge lately—he wants sex more often than I seem to desire and he is looking for some kind of intimacy factor that baffles me. This conflict has been eroding the ease and playfulness that we had shared for two years.

Gangaji’s answer was something along the lines of  “intimacy is not sex dependent” but for the most part, her reply left more questions than it answered.

On the drive home from that three-day retreat, we argued about sex, again—I even came up with a schematic drawing of the three motivations for sex (intimacy, pleasure and power) and tried to explain our difficulty as a matter of motivation.  This “connection” or intimacy drive that he described was not what inspired me to sexual union but rather a simple desire for pleasure and play. I did not feel loved or unloved depending on frequency of our sex life, while for him, any frequency slow downs became problematic and seemed to trigger feelings of unworthiness and distance.

Fast forward six weeks, when the overnight awakening washed through my reality like a tidal wave—taking with it the sense of dutiful wife, worried partner or any concept of who I was or should be. This vast boundless deeply peaceful new me suddenly saw the real issue about sex and intimacy. Post-awakening, I saw at last what this contention between us had been about and finally understood what Gangaji had been trying to say.

This didn’t mean that I did not over the next few years still attempt to ease the tension, but I no longer felt attached to creating a solution. Because I knew at once the truth about sex and intimacy, and just why the drive for intimacy through sex can be both a distraction and a portal to awakening.

Yes, it’s a double edged sword.

If you are curious, I posted this video yesterday on my Awakened Dreamer FB page. It’s about 7 minutes long and in it, I get to the heart of the sex, intimacy and awakening storyline.

I hope you enjoy it — and I’d love to hear your experiences in this awakening journey when it comes to sex and intimacy.

your’s in awareness, Lori Ann.

13 thoughts on “Sex, Intimacy & Awakening: The One Thing that Changes After You Wake Up

  1. paradoxtabernacle

    Thanks for this. For most of my adult life, my sexuality was linked up somehow in an unhealthy relationship to my needy child….and it was through sex that I found my closest connection with something transcendent. I am seeing now what a constricted viewpoint I had, not being able to make that complete connection in other ways…..just simple typical “things” are also holy and are vehicles for big love IF we have the openness of heart to receive it. I have not had this until recent events have opened my heart to a new possibility. Thank god/dess that love/spirit brought this to me, even tho I am older. There is a Rumi quote I really like….”When I am done with you, the firmament will be smeared all over your face…even your asshole will be a shrine”. I’m almost there, friend. Thank you. Gassho, Pilgrim.


  2. Andrea

    Thank you. I have been experiencing a slow gradual awakening for many many years. But over the last 4 years my sex drive has depleted. Last year I had a major activation and now I feel as though I do not understand sex from a physical pleasure place. I am married. I have one child who just turned 3. My husband feels insecure that I could care less for sex. I honestly don’t know why. I don’t even fantasize about sexuality with celebrities lol. But I do have romantic and intimate dreams quite often. But never sexual dreams. Anyway, I figured maybe this is my spirit detaching from desires. But I’m still not sure what’s going on. Anyway thank you for this post.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Amit

    Hi Lori,

    Not quite on this topic. Recently read one of your early posts on the symptoms of awakening. Wonder if the symptoms have “eased” since or have become normalized. Just curious about whether it fades over time.




      1. Amit

        Don’t know much about wine unfortunately. 🙂

        Would you still be prepared to say that your default inner state is effortless peace, against which thoughts, emotions, sensations flow?




  4. Isabel Fernandez Hearn

    Thank God I found your calm approach to “menopause and celibacy” Lori. Not that I had any doubt whiting myself but society’s on my back wanting me to repent. My husband filed for divorce on grounds I’m not sexual for him. This reject of his has deeper roots unseen, but my in-laws seized on it reproaching how I was not “honouring” the purpose of marriage. That’s over now, I live alone, content just to live, loving my job and supporting our daughter’s uni studies. Ah! but I’m not left in peace. My landlords, or my landladys’s male relatives, seem to understand me as their own potential sexual partner because I live under their roof and I’m alone. This causes me having to move into another place because they get furious when they see nothing is going to ever happen. I do not want nay more sex with nobody, I’ve had many lovers in my life, finished with it. I am 55, had my menopause at 48, love the feeling of it – a new “me”, and just want to be left in peace! True I am spiritually developed – I have always been since childhood, I am grateful for this gift. True also, as you said, Lori: I cherish my residual libido energy as a life-force I use for my job as a carer (end of life mostly) and for assisting my daughter to evolve and achieve her dreams and financial independence. I also use my libido ( residual) to live, enjoy all aspects of life, keep young and curious, keep learning, relate to a wide variety of people, enjoy art, read, keep up with political scenarios, keep my home lovingly cared-for, relate to children, enjoy animals, nature, and more. I cannot any more lock up my libido for the pleasure and coziness of one male ( or female though not the case). It no longer makes sense to me. I will keep lovingly moving out of my outraged ex-suitors’s properties as my price I have to pay for being loyal to my own reality. With the experience gathered I must surely become an expert on quick ways of moving out! I must publish about it! Very honestly, thank you Lori for publishing yourself. I feel in good company and understood. Blessings and my gratitude, Isabel

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lori Ann Lothian

      Thank you for sharing. I relate entirely to everything you have said. Keep true to what you know to be your own right action, and also stay open to life. It might send a man your way with whom sexual pleasure is not the number one priority.


      1. Isabel Fernandez Hearn

        Hi, Lori,
        Thanks for your reply. I wonder, could my letter above please be put under another name, for example Isadora Pimienta?
        I am sorry for hassle but I did not know that my full name would appear. I am not savvy with the internet. If this could be done for me, I’d be very grateful !
        Just for privacy, I am quite shy.
        Thanks a lot!
        Keep well,
        Isabel Fernandez Hearn


  5. Sondra Sneed

    This is a great conversation.

    My husband and I have intimacy w/o sex. We dance in the kitchen, take baths, camp, all without needing sex. Granted we’re older now, no longer hound dogs of passion, but it’s a freer joy to leave that physical need behind.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Dave

    Speaking only from a personal perspective, I believe sex does not have much to do with intimacy. It is a desire that can be used to express intimacy; or not. It has no doubt been used as a means of control, and the insatiable need for pleasure that can never be satisfied. Intimacy is more of an inner need when we find ourselves lacking. This ‘lack’ is simply the separation from God we feel much of the time. We look for someone or something to fill that need for us. That is when we look for sex, or any other kind of validation that we are ‘worthy’ or whole. In reality, we are worthy and whole in our Being. Gangaji is so correct. Intimacy is not dependent on conjugal relations just as it is not dependent on anything… any thing… the world can offer to assuage our feelings of lack. When we realize that we are connected to the Whole, our lack vanishes like the mist on a bright sunny morning. Blessings!

    Liked by 2 people

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