Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Dalai Lama on Sacred Sex

(Used with permission from TK*)

Here are some interesting quotes from the 14th Dalai Lama regarding sex as taught and understood in the context of Tantric Buddhism.

“Being able to have sexual contact without releasing semen is something needed when you practice the advanced stages of the complete stage." - The 14th Dalai Lama (Berzin Archives)


"For Buddhists, sexual intercourse can be used in the spiritual path because it causes a strong focusing on consciousness if the practitioner has firm compassion and wisdom. Its purpose is to manifest and prolong deeper levels of mind (described earlier with respect to the process of dying), in order to put their power to use in strengthening the realization of the emptiness. Otherwise, mere intercourse has nothing to do with spiritual cultivation. When a person has achieved a high level of practice in motivation and wisdom, then even the joining of the two sex organs or so-called intercourse, does not detract from the maintenance of that person’s pure behavior..."

"Through special techniques of concentration during sex, competent practitioners can prolong very deep, subtle, and powerful states and put them to use to realize emptiness. However, if you engage in sexual intercourse within an ordinary mental context, there is no benefit." - How to Practice, Way to a Meaningful Life, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Translated by Jeffrey Hopkins


"Actually, [..] the sexual organ is utilized, but the energy movement which is taking place is, in the end, fully controlled. The energy should never be let out. This energy must be controlled and eventually returned to other parts of the body. And here we can see there is a kind of special connection with celibacy." - Quoted from "The Good Heart," H.H. the Dalai Lama


"There's a great difference between the movement of the regenerative fluids for two individuals engaged in ordinary sexual intercourse as opposed to a highly realized male yogi and female yogini who are engaged in sexual intercourse...

"In principle, the general difference between the two types of sexual act is the control of the flow of regenerative fluids. Tantric practitioners must have control over the flow of the fluids, and those who are highly experienced can even reverse the direction of the flow, even when it has reached the tip of the genitals. Less experienced practitioners have to reverse the direction of the flow from a higher point. If the fluids descend too far down, they are more difficult to control." - Sleeping, Dreaming, and Dying, by The Dalai Lama (1997, Wisdom Publications, ISBN 0-86171-123-8)


"Although I am using this ordinary term, sexual climax, it does not imply the ordinary sexual act. The reference here is to the experience of entering into union with a consort of the opposite sex, by means of which the elements at the crown are melted, and through the power of Meditation the process is also reversed. A prerequisite of such a practice is that you should be able to protect yourself from the fault of seminal emission. According to the explanation of the Kalachakra Tantra in particular, such emission is said to be very damaging to your practice. Therefore, because you should not experience emission even in dreams, the tantras describe different techniques for overcoming this fault." - The 14th Dalai Lama


"One night a number of dakinis (female deities) were gathered in Birwapa's room at the monastery. Other monks heard female voices through the walls and the next day, at a gathering in the big hall, the head disciplinarian expelled Birwapa from the monastery. Birwapa left wilingly, recognizing that the time had come for him to practice "union" and to develop the Great Bliss which penetrates emptiness through reliance on an external consort..." - The Dalai Lama's Secret Temple, by Ian Baker, pg. 167 (Thames & Hudson, 2000)


  1. In the book, "The Dakini's Warm Breath", by Judith Simmer-Brown, the Dalai Lama says, "In order to develop inner heat (tummo), ... one should rely on a female consort as one's assistant..."

    It is clear from the quotes on this page that sex is integral to the highest attainments in Tibetan Buddhism. From the DL we learn that "For Buddhists, sexual intercourse can be used in the spiritual path... Its purpose is to manifest and prolong deeper levels of mind ... in strengthening the realization of emptiness." Further, "the sexual organ is utilized, but the energy movement ... is.. fully controlled, [and] ..should never be let out. Here we can see there is a kind of special connection with celibacy." "A prerequisite of such a practice is that you should be able to protect yourself from the fault of seminal emission." Really? Sex = celibacy if you don't ejaculate? is that like marijuana use isn't a crime if you don't inhale?

    His Holiness further explains: "When a person has achieved a high level of practice in motivation and wisdom, then even the joining of the two sex organs does not detract from the maintenance of that person's pure behavior..." Well! Not only does sex = celibacy, but it also equals "purity" for the monastic!

    The above practice is for male practitioners "utilizing" a female "assistant". But how do male monastics procure women for this "advanced Buddhist practice"? In the old Tibet, the lamas hired prostitutes, and in the case of initiation rituals, the monks were required to bring low-caste women to the ceremony. Conveniently, the monasteries had slaves and serfs, and there was a brutal caste system from which women could be culled for "assistance" in the monks' path to Enlightenment.

    Lay initiates were required to bring their female relatives: mother, daughters, sisters, who were told they were to receive a "blessing" from the lama. The initiate was expected to offer his youngest daughter to the lama ("the more precious the gift, the stronger the practice", and the more pleased the revered guru). The initiate had to demonstrate mastery of seminal retention by copulating with all the women throughout the night. The lama followed suit.

    That was old Tibet. The Chinese now have infiltrated the monasteries with paid monks to prevent these depraved practices. But what of the many monasteries in exile?

    According to some Western women dharma students tricked into attending these rituals (whose nature was not disclosed to them in advance), and who were coerced, or violently forced, into "couple practice", 9 women are required for the initiation ritual, and the lama and initiates rotate consorts throughout the night. Escape is not an option, the women are at the mercy of the assembled men. Screams cannot be heard from the inner sanctums of monasteries with thick exterior walls.

    After their ordeal, the women are intimidated into secrecy variously. They are told that if they speak of what they have seen, they will suffer eternally in "vajra hell", as will their loved ones. Psychological abuse may take the form of spells that threaten not only hell, but death. Spells and mudras (magical gestures) are used to convince the victims of this nightmarish "spiritual practice" that occult powers have been brought to bear in the enforcement of their silence. Already traumatized by their night of terror, and severely sleep-deprived, the women are confused and psychologically and emotionally disoriented, and vulnerable to such suggestions. It is a miracle that they manage to return home at all to then spend years picking up the pieces of a shattered psyche.

    Such is the Dalai Lama's "religion of kindness".

  2. Thank you so much.

    I just found a quote by Chan Master Sheng'Yen

    "The well known Chinese Ch'an teacher, Master Sheng-yen also said of the Zen Master, "it should be remembered that the mind of the master is ever pure... and even if the master tells lies, steals, and chases women..., he is still to be considered a true master as long as he scolds his disciples for their transgressions." _ftn7 [7]

    The reader is informed that no matter what the Zen Master does, it is beyond both the reader's and the student's ken, because the Master's mind is ever pure, a mysterious state beyond the ordinary person's comprehension. The student is informed that the Master's authority must be taken totally on faith in the infallibility and omniscience that is implicit in his title. The student is incapable of making any judgments relating to the Master's activities. Zen's self-definition as a tradition beyond words and letters would lead one to believe that words and thinking are not important. Yet here we see, in terms of institutional authority and hierarchy, it is precisely words and title that are of primary importance."

    This comes from his book, and i quoted at

  3. This extremely disturbing information reminds me of a couple of statements by the popular Bhutanese filmmaker and lama, Dzongsar Khentse Rinpoche. At one time on his website he had a two essays containing the following statements: "Western husbands are naive to send their wives to Asia alone to study with lamas"
    And this, at the end of a rant about women accusing lamas of sexual abuse: "I have a friend who is teaching in the West; he has several consorts, and no complaints".

    Dzongsar Khentse has removed these statements after redesigning his website.

    From these quotes we are to understand that a) we are naive to entrust women to the care of lamas, naive to assume women's physical integrity is not at risk in the presence of Tibetan spiritual guides, and b) the Tibetan Buddhist tradition considers it standard, acceptable, practice for teachers to have sex with disciples, even multiple disciples at a time.

    Straight from the horse's's mouth.

  4. TheDalai Lama has been publishing in his own books that practice with a consort is necessary in the "completion stage" of tantra. Furthermore, he states that monks "retain their purity" in sexual practice, because they retain the semen, which, according to the DL, is key to the practice. It's not sex if you don't ejaculate, it's spiritual practice and meditation. The vows of celibacy aren't violated.

    Clearly, he's talking out of both sides of his mouth. As if he thinks we wouldn't notice.

    (See: "How To Practice, Way To A Meaningful Life", "The Good Heart", "Sleeping, Dreaming, and Dying", by the 14th Dalai Lama)