“What’s Sexuality Got to do With Ecology?”
Teri Ciacchi, Sarah Heartsong, and Christina Dietrich
Sex, Gender… EcoSexual!
How one thinks about sex, gender, and biology is relevant to and informs the ability to create a holistic and ecologically sustainable culture that no longer tolerates Earth’s ecological devastation. If the premise is accepted that all Life is part of an interconnected web of existence, then each individual, personal experience within this web reflects to some extent the human relationship with the planet Earth, which houses and sustains that web of existence. The root energy of Earth’s creative life force IS sex, regardless of whether it’s ultimately used for an act of procreation and birth. Therefore, how humans relate and assign meaning to both the physical and social/cultural understandings of sex, genitalia, gender, and sexual expression are key components of the paradigms that need to shift and evolve if humanity is to create a sustainable, healthy relationship with the Earth…
In mainstream American society, the meaning of sex is commonly collapsed to indicate “penis in vagina” experiences for the purpose of procreation or recreation: one man with a penis and one woman with a vagina connect their genitalia and “sex” is what occurs. This procreation-focused definition extremely limits what people understand to be genuine expressions of human sexuality; that is, what qualifies as a sexual activity. Pornography and erotica provide us with myriad variations on ways people can have recreational sex, and yet they both fall short in fully capturing a holistic definition of human “sex.” A straight-jacketed, biologically-driven understanding of sex as something that is ONLY for procreation or recreation is decidedly not what “EcoSexuality” is all about.
An EcoSexual definition of sex goes beyond these restrictions and counts at least three forms of sex. Moore (2009) identified 3 contexts for sex: procreation, recreation, and quantum.i Quantum sex in this definition is sex that is not just recreation, it is profoundly meaningful. According to Moore:
“Quantum sex is sex understood in the context of a heightened awareness of, and deep appreciation for, the mystery and magic of the qualitative Way of Being. It is more than a simple physical interconnection of body parts – it is the intrinsically dynamic complex birth process of Being Itself rooted in the omnipresent here and the eternal now experienced in terms of an egoless I.”
To EcoSexuals quantum is communion. Intentional, consensual sex can provide a shift in human consciousness because sex for communion deepens intimacy and connection through the act of sharing both touch and emotions. Consensual sex with other human beings, regardless of their gender, creates closeness and unity for all parties involved; it can generate a sense that one is part of the interconnected web of all life. It is this third realm of sexuality, specifically, the experience of communion with ALL life forms, that EcoSexuals focus on.