synergy explorersPractitioners of the higher tantric systems promise to keep vows. The excerpt below comes from the Kalachakra Tantra tradition. It appears in Dr. Alexander Berzin’s modern archive. The archive presents authentic Tibetan Buddhist teachings in a down-to-earth, practical way.

Through tantric practices, adherents collect subtle energy drops known as bodhichitta. These advance serious practitioners toward liberation/enlightenment. These precious bodhichitta drops are lost through sexual orgasm, with or without loss of bodily fluids. [Emphasis below supplied]


The Fourteen Kalachakra Tantra Root Downfalls

A ‘root downfall’ makes spiritual practice impossible and thus severs the root of any previous spiritual accomplishment.


(5) … Whether male or female, whenever we experience the release of energy that accompanies sexual orgasm – regardless of the emission of gross fluids – we lose subtle creative drops, called “bodhichitta” or “jasmine flower drops (Skt. kunda).” These drops form the basis for achieving unchanging blissful awareness. Since such release discards the most efficient means for achieving enlightenment, it is called “giving up bodhichitta.” For this root downfall to be complete, however, we need to understand the nature of unchanging blissful awareness, yet release these subtle drops anyway – when there is no special need to do so – through any means, with the wish to attain enlightenment through the bliss of ordinary orgasmic emission. The four binding factors need not accompany this action.

Release of orgasmic energy or fluids in ordinary sexual acts does not constitute a tantric root downfall, so long as it is not regarded as something spiritual – specifically, as a means for attaining liberation or enlightenment. However, any experience of orgasmic release, regardless of how we view it, weakens the form we are trying to give to our lives with Kalachakra root tantric vows. It counters the purpose of trying to achieve enlightenment as quickly as possible through the Kalachakra method of unchanging blissful awareness.

It is important to be realistic, not melodramatic about this matter. Taking this vow does not mean having to remain childless or never to have another baby. Nor does it condemn us to stop enjoying ordinary sex or to feel guilty about it. It does mean, however, seeing the bliss of orgasmic emission in the perspective of unchanging blissful awareness, and committing ourselves to revising our values. In short, when we have no control over our orgasmic energies, we stress, with this vow, never to regard the bliss of orgasmic release from ordinary sex as a spiritual experience, as a way to solve all problems, or as a path to enlightenment.

Also see: Tibetan Buddhism on orgasmic release