Same Sex Magic
Dear Witchful Thinking,
I have been reading everything I can get my hands on about Wicca and Paganism. In a few of the books I read, I found instructions on performing sex magic. However, I have not been able to find any explanations as to why sex magic is used and how same sex practitioners can use it. Could you explain what sex magic is used for and how two same sex practitioners can use it?
Just like magic, sex is a ritual act in itself. You start with a goal: to make love, to make a child, to dominate the other, to be subdued, to pleasure the other, to both get off, to have fun, etc. Next, you do activities to make you and your partner get there. Then you raise energy and finally ground it out (with cuddling, smoking, or whatever your post-coitus ritual is!).
We also do it symbolically in ritual. The great rite is the act of putting the athame in the chalice. It represents the sexual union of the Goddess and God. I have seen some beautiful rituals where the athame touches the athame, or other same-sex symbolism, so don’t feel limited or excluded from expressing your own sexuality in ritual simply because what is written expresses heterosexual union. If you are interested in reading more about this, I recommend looking up the Feri Tradition. They have a wonderful creation story that includes same-sex unions as part of their sacred cosmology.
We also have the Great Rite, which is an actual sacred sexual union. In a group that is very tight-knit, the Priest and Priestess leading the ritual will ask the rest of the group to leave, so they can do the Great Rite in Circle and formally complete the union. They invoke as more than themselves and represent the actual God and Goddess in sexual bliss. It would be for special occasions–perhaps a Beltain ritual. I don’t think the ritual is done this way as often as outsiders would have us believe. It is done usually between already established partners in privacy. From the rumors I’ve heard, there aren’t a lot of covens who actually have sex all together, or in front of each other (and really, would you want to?). The purpose of this Great Rite is to re-enact the creation of the Universe and to give your bodies in honor of the Gods. If you are prepared for it, it can be a beautiful ritual. Unfortunately, I don’t think most people know how to prepare themselves for this. I’ve never seen the instructions in a book, so it might remain an oral history (no pun intended) that you will need a teacher for. If you want to read about it, the fiction novel “The Memoirs of Elizabeth Frankenstein” by Theodore Roszak is a brilliant piece about woman’s magical wisdom vs. masculine science-as-god, and how the two might merge in alchemical union. Plus, it’s based on Mary Shelly’s “Frankenstein”.
So that’s the esoteric stuff. You can use sex magic in your own magical practices as a Witch. You can do it solo or with a partner or group. Remember the more people you have, the more difficult it will be to create groupmind and focus on what you want.
Sex magic challenges us to reevaluate how we use pleasure and what we believe about our bodies. Remember that Wiccans do not see sex or pleasure as sinful in any way, but an expression of our sexual selves. That is why our Gods have sex. But we do have a responsibility to be ethical. Wicca is a fertility religion as much as it is a mystery religion, so we see sensuality in nature.
How to do Sex Magic
- Identify your goal and put it in positive terms. Visualize what you want.
- Make sure all participants know what the goal is. Make sure the visualization is the same.
- Cast sacred space. Be sure to include the area where the magic and grounding will take place.
- Raise energy through sexual activity, keeping the goal in mind.
- At climax, release that energy into the Universe towards that goal.
- Ground in the usual way.
- Take up or release the sacred space.
- Know that your magic will work and wait for the results you are looking for. Do other actions to support that goal.
For example, let’s say you and your partner feel passionate about saving the rainforest and want to do something about it. You get together and visualize the rainforest alive with animals. You visualize humans enjoying the rainforest and leaving without a trace. You visualize bulldozers and trucker equipment going around the rainforest to a tree farm instead, or using other materials to get their products made.
Perhaps you come up with a chant to use while you raise energy: “Let the rainforest be free to thrive and grow, for future generations to know. Let the companies find other ways and grow out of this consumerist phase. With harm to none in perfect love, by our will let it be done!”
Then while you please each other in the usual way, you say this chant or keep it in mind. At climax, release the energy towards your target and send it out into the universe. Follow up by donating money to an organization that protects the rainforest, or make an effort to buy Fair Trade or use products that don’t contain rainforest wood–whatever will support your spell.
Sex is an extremely powerful form of energy because it opens up most or all of our chakras and gets the energy rolling. It takes some practice to keep that visualization going while you are being stimulated, so try it again if it doesn’t work. In my opinion, raising energy this way should be used if you want something for the both of you and are ready to accept whatever Karma it brings. Really thinking through the potential consequences of a any spell is extremely important. Let’s say you ask for a boat, and the universe gives you one, but you live in Arizona away from most bodies of water–what’s your plan, exactly, to take care of, pay for, and use this boat? Even asking for bonding, as in a sacred marriage through the Great Rite–are you really ready to be spiritually tied to this person? Have you thought about what that means or what it will mean five or fifteen years down the line? It’s a really big decision that is unnecessary for intimacy or love–those things are magic in themselves. Before you do any kind of powerful magic, including sex magic, do some real reflection and ask what you really want. Are you spiritually binding your partner so they won’t leave you or so you won’t feel lonely? Maybe this isn’t the best way to go about getting what you want, and another way would be more expedient and less spiritually possessive.
Remember that whoever you do magic with will be bound to the spell. You’ll need to be absolutely sure of what you all want when you do this magic together. Keep your ethical practices in mind. For that reason, most folks do sex magic solo.
As you can see, it doesn’t matter what your partners gender is when you do sex magic. It’s about the energy and setting it to work for you. Same-sex partners can do mutual masturbation, use toys, games, or oral sex to achieve climax the same way that heterosexual partners can. Unfortunately, the language of most books on sex magic is aimed at heterosexual couples, but that doesn’t mean you can’t adapt it for your use.
Seriously though, I don’t recommend sex magic for couples unless they are both well-practiced and versed in other magical practices. At least start with solo practice to train yourself. Try a few books on the subject to get a feel for it before you jump in the deep end.
A few Sex Magic books for Practitioners
- Wiccan Sex Magic by Inga Steddinger: “The author reveals the secrets of sexual energies released and guided by the rites, rituals and hidden techniques of witchcraft– ancient and modern. These techniques range from the use of scourge and bonds to the enactment of the Great Rite. This is the most radical exploration of the explicitly sexual workings of witchcraft and neo-shamanism.”
- Magic for Lovers by Selene Silverwind: “Every romantic couple needs a little extra magic in their lives, and MAGIC FOR LOVERS offers just the right blend of spice for the bedroom and the soul. Many relationship books encourage partners to strengthen their bonds through sexual adventures that, while bringing short-term sizzle, seldom lead to lasting change. Selene Silverwind uses a fundamental—and fun—approach that is grounded in ancient Wiccan magical concepts, traditions, and practices, with some tantra, feng shui, and kundalini yoga thrown in. This heady brew of carnal spirituality is integrated into rituals, ceremonies, and spells that are designed to help new lovers last, old lovers rekindle their passion, and all lovers have exciting and meaningful relationships.”
- Rites of Pleasure by Jennifer Huntwood: This book is about how Pagans and Wiccans view and use their sexuality in spiritual practices. While it won’t have a “how to” section, it might be a good foundation for thinking about your sexuality in this path.
- Kink Magic by Taylor Elwood: “Kink Magic: Sex Magic Beyond Vanilla explores the realm of sex magic from the kinkier side. Authors Taylor Ellwood and Lupa take the intense altered states of consciousness inherent in BDSM and other fetish play and use them to create practical and metamorphic techniques. Detailed explanation of theory gives a solid foundation, while personal stories of their own spiritual adventures illustrate the effectiveness of kink magic. This book presents techniques for everything from casting sigils, to confronting–and banishing–your inner demons, to taking your sexy roleplay and turning it into powerful invocation rituals. Rather than dogmatically elaborating on the “right” way to do it, Taylor and Lupa give you ideas to apply to your own kink and magical practices, regardless of your sexual orientation or relationship status. Whether you’re top or bottom, dominant or submissive, or even the most flexible switch, you’ll find plenty here to take your practice deeper and farther than ever before.”
- Sexy Witch by LaSara Firefox: “Employing a unique blend of feminism and magick, this refreshing guide to female self-empowerment helps women acknowledge the beauty, strength, and sexiness within themselves. Utterly honest and captivating, LaSara FireFox banishes the damaging misconceptions and shame often associated with female sexuality and sheds light on what it truly means to be a Sexy Witch.”
The only one of these books I’ve actually looked through is Sexy Witch, which is definitely aimed at women. When looking for a book about sex magic, be sure it includes information about ethics and avoids dogmatic or “generic” information. Generally, if a book can’t bring itself to say “masturbation”, “orgasm”, or use real words for genitalia, you may be dealing with a book that doesn’t give itself permission to go into real depth. The contents should have real spiritual meaning for you, and not just be there to titillate.