Many men and women enjoy extended family like friendships with open minded people that they care about. Sharing sensual and sexual pleasure is just a natural part of such relationships. Some couples enjoy seeing their mates enjoying sexual pleasure with someone else, without jealousy or fear of loss. Many happily married committed couples are opening themselves up to finding others to be close friends and also open to exploring sexual sharing to add variety to their already fulfilled sex lives. All these are forms of polyamory relationships whether between couples, singles or just various combinations of males and females. Just like they can love more than just one child, they can sincerely love other adults as people and spirits without loving any of their other or prime partners any less. Many couples that don't need outside relationships to be fulfilled, find expanding their sexual options enhance their already wonderful relationship with their mates.
If you are like most people who want to explore responsible open
relationships, you feel very isolated in a culture that assumes that
monogamy is the only legitimate option for intimate relationships. For
years open people have learned to stay safely in the closet. Unfortunately,
closets are notoriously poor places to meet people. Gays, lesbians,
bisexuals, etc. have managed to create viable subcultures, but those of us
who want sincere long term open relationships are often adrift in the
hostile mainstream of indoctrinated society. One form of polyamory is
"swinging" which is couples sharing as couples. For some it's just
recreational sex. But many "swingers" seek sincere loving long-term
relationships. Many are just as interested in what is between the ears as in
what is between the legs.
The Swinging Lifestyle Myth
There are myths galore about swinging. Are they without morals, oversexed, guilt-ridden and shameful slugs of the sexual underground? Is it true that women only swing because their husbands forced them? Swingers are very ordinary people who admit to themselves they want their sex lives to involve more than what a purely monogamous relationship can deliver. They choose the freedom to act to broaden the range of their activities without endangering their relationships or their families.
The swinging lifestyle attracts people from all walks of life and
professions. Don't be surprised to learn that the innocent-looking wife
next door likes to drag two or three men onto a bed at a time and be
smothered with their attentions without any guilt.
Swingers or those in polyamory relationships are not cheating on any prime relationship, rather they do it together or with each other's knowledge and consent. Polyamory allows all humans to fulfill their need to be enjoyed, admired and sexually attracted to people of the opposite sex not just one partner. Polyamory can allow you to enjoy a different sexual rhythms with people you click with as friends as well as sex partners. The loss of sexual anxieties and heightened self confidence account for much of the enthusiasm of those in polyamory relationships..
Sensitivity and Consideration
Those in polyamory relationships love sex but they also love people and treasure the close friendships that develop. People are looking for sensitivity and understanding not just sex objects. Those who do not share this considerate attitude will not be welcome by others in the lifestyle.
The byword is consideration; for example, ladies going to their first swing
party won't be abused. The men are in average condition; most will never be
Chippendale material. The women are also average as in the general
population. The men are not mythical studs; the ladies are not whores.
Polyamory involves social interaction, including the possibility of sexual
interaction if mutually desired, so those who wish to explore the lifestyle
need not fear ostracism or rape. All a couple needs to cope at the first
swing party is a concern for the feelings of each other and common sense.
If all you want to do is talk with others about the lifestyle, your find
conversation easy. You won't be laughed at if you choose not to undress;
remember, it is very likely that everyone at the party exercised great
caution before deciding swinging was something they wanted to do.
Jealousy & Women's Sex Drive
Women are usually less prone to jealousy than men. Women more often go through feelings of inadequacy. Men more often have to work through feelings of Jealousy. Women overcome inadequacy when they find that other men find them attractive and want to share with them.
Women don't tend to be jealous but they are initially more afraid, often
coming to their first experience because their husband or boyfriend wants
it. Women don't know if the men will have diseases or if they are going to
jump on them. Women only want special guys because that's how they have
been taught all their lives. They are not sexually oriented the same way
men are. With men its sex and love and with women it's love and then sex.
With experience and just talking with others the first few times, women
learn that there are nice people who are in polyamorous relationships; that
they have families, and learn sexuality is acceptable rather than a dirty
private thing. Men have a high sex drive; that seems to be the nature of
life. But some women do not have by nature a high sex drive until they are
within a relationship with people they enjoy. Although slower to enter the
lifestyle, women tend to become the most enthusiastic once they relax and
start relating to others. A woman's sexuality is often stronger than man's,
once she is willing to trust and relax.
The Christian Moral View
The religious view of a society has a profound impact on the emotional health of its people and on the quality of their interpersonal relationships. Non-Christians are also influenced by the predominant Christian view in our society.
A major distinction between Eastern and Western religious views is in regard
to sexuality. From the East we have the wonderful integration of sexuality
and spirit as seen in Tantra and other teachings that result in much more
sexual fulfillment than in Western culture. In the West, God is viewed as
omnipotent, intolerant, who rules over all (especially women) with the ideal
of woman being a virgin insisting on strict moral obedience (often the
results of mistranslated scriptures) where sex is somehow dirty and the
opposite of spirituality. This Western view is a recipe for endless
hostility and conflict between the sexes. The irony is for those that look
more seriously at scripture to understand what it really was saying in the
culture it was written, we understand the beliefs are based on false
tradition rather than an accurate reflection of scripture.
This sex-negative Christian moral view, although in a long slow decline, is
going to be with us for a long time in the West and continues to influence
our laws, our perceptions of one another, and the character or our personal
lives. Its result is conflict, estrangement, and hostility between the
sexes. In earlier times women were not able to be empowered due to their
economic dependence on men and their encumbrance with the care of children.
But today, with effective birth control and the growing economic
independence of women, women are taking the lead in demanding more sexually
empowering honest discussion and exposure of the false teachings of Western
The biggest blocks to a more healthy sexual society is the traditional
religious beliefs based on mistranslated and misunderstood biblical texts
that have no relevance to today's loving responsible non-monogamous
relationships. What is particularly ironic is the ignorance of many
Christians about the biblical culture, where adultery was only wrong for a
married woman and men could have as many wives and concubines (breeders) as
they wished. In many ways biblical sexuality was far more positive but was
male dominated. Wives and children were simply the property of their
husbands/fathers. Today's responsible non-monogamous relationships can be a
much better example of Christ's love than the false teachings of traditional
False Biblical Teachings About Fornication/Adultery
The Bible has been misquoted and mistranslated to falsely suppress sexuality. There is nothing inconsistent with biblical Christianity and open responsible relationships. Clearly, responsible polyamory should not be a problem for Christians that understand the original texts as understood in the culture in which the Bible was written.
Our biblical research papers and an extensive bibliography of books of many
dedicated, Christ-loving theologians provide details on the true meaning of
the biblical teachings of fornication and adultery in contrast to the false
traditional teachings. Here is just a brief overview of the key biblical
Biblical Discussion of "Fornication"
Traditional church teaching falsely misuses the Bible to judge loving, responsible singles' sexuality. True biblical theology begins not with church tradition and dogma but with the biblical texts themselves. Biblical theology seeks to understand how the biblical authors expressed themselves in the Greek language of New Testament times (not expanded by later Greek meanings), in terms of their culture. Only with this understanding is it legitimate to define biblical sexual ethics of the NT and find implications for today.
If you are happier in your beliefs that sex is wrong outside of marriage,
that may be what is best for you. But it is not from scripture as you have
been taught by the church. If you understand church history and its biased
translations you soon realize the deceptions the church is teaching
regarding many sexual issues. Many well-meaning biblical teachers have
passed on these views without realizing their origins or history.
In I Cor. 6:9 "porneia" is badly translated as "fornication". From "Halley's
Bible Handbook" Re: 1 Corn 6: 9-20; "Venus was the principal Deity of
Corinth. Her temple was one of the most magnificent buildings in the city.
In it a thousand Priestesses, Public Prostitutes, were kept, at public
expense, there always ready for Immoral Indulgence, as worship to their
Goddess." The Christians continued to go to the temple for sexual
indulgences with the priestesses of Venus. This was all Paul was talking
about; he says nothing about loving sexual pleasure sharing with
non-goddesses'! Where Paul was condemning Goddess sex worship, the Latin
fathers substituted "fornicatio", which led readers to believe that Paul was
condemning all forms of nonmarital sexual intercourse.
Nothing in the NT indicates any prohibition of singles' sexuality. If we
apply Jesus' teaching of love over legalism, responsible Christian sexuality
is much more an example of Christ's loving desire for us than the
traditional biblical values of many wives, concubines as breeders, and
capturing women in battle for soldiers' sexual pleasure.
Reasons For Marriage in Biblical Times No Longer Relevant
In Hebrew culture many married at age 13, died at age 30, and there was no reliable birth control. Many marriages were arranged as financial deals between fathers whose children would become betrothed until they were old enough to marry. The girl had little say in the matter. If the boy liked the girl, he might return with more money to marry some of her sisters. Marriage established the mans property rights over the women. Today women have the same moral options in their sexual fulfillment that men have always enjoyed.
Biblical Discussion of Adultery
The Jews understood "Thou shalt not commit adultery" very differently than church tradition. It only applied to men if they had intercourse with someone else's wife. But it was allowable for a married man to have intercourse with a single woman. Adultery was the sin of "trespassing" on a man's property. Today, women have the same rights of sexual enjoyment and variety that men had in the time of Christ.
While adultery was considered a sin for women, concubinage (women as
breeders) and polygyny (men could have many wives, but a woman only one
husband) were acceptable. The capturing of women in battle and forcing them
to be wives, as well as levirate marriage (if a man's brother died without
heirs, the man had to marry his dead brother's wife and have children to
perpetuate the deceased brother's name), were acceptable biblical practices.
How Sex Was Made A Sin
Augustine in about 300 A.D. was a primary theological shaper of thought and went so far as to argue that sex was sinful even within wedlock unless the specific purpose was always conception! This reflects the need at the time for many more children. Infant mortality was very high and the economic and political structures were based on families. Likewise, clerical celibacy was in part shaped by fear that offspring would fight over church property.
Thanks to widespread illiteracy - or apathy - whatever the church said was
now law. Intercourse was no longer natural and good; sex was dirty and only
for procreation. Celibacy was the new standard for the clergy. And it was a
great money maker! If you sinned by enjoying sex, you must come to the
church for repentance, which required a donation to demonstrate your faith.
What a perfect way for the church to raise capital: make everyone a sinner
because of their innate sexual desires and then offer to absolve them for a
Making polygamy a "sin" was a slow process. Before the 12th century it was common for Catholic priests to have multiple wives and mistresses. Pope Gregory II in 726 said "when a man has a sick wife who cannot discharge the marital function, he may take a second one, provided he looks after the first one." Later, with concerns for protecting Church property from inheritance, Pope Pelagius I made new priests agree that offspring could not inherit Church property. Pope Gregory then declared all sons of priests illegitimate (only sons since lowly daughters could not inherit anyway). In 1022 Pope Benedict VIII banned marriages and mistresses for priests and in 1139 Pope Innocent II voided all marriages of priests and all new priests had to divorce their wives. This had nothing to do with morality (multiple women for males had long been the norm since before biblical times), but it was about MONEY!
The Only Christian Law Is Love
Christ, in his Sermon on the Mount, replaced all the rules with only the rule of love for Christians to follow. But Christians seem to want a rule book to follow instead of operating under the greater responsibility of love. Christ certainly wouldn't condemn today's loving, consenting, no-cheating non-monogamous relationships. Cheating adultery is clearly wrong since it involves lying and deception. Today, women should enjoy equal rights and sex can be for pleasure and an expression of sincere love. This makes polyamory a more equal and loving lovestyle.
Historically Few Cultures Monogamous
Highlights from Omni Magazine 9/93: In the West, we assume the "natural condition" is monogamy, with significant investment in offspring by the husband/father. But a worldwide sample of over 1,500 human cultures strongly argues that the vast majority either encourage or at least tolerate polygyny - several women married to a single man. In most cultures, women would be furious if a law were passed that decreed they could not become the second, third, or sixth wife of a wealthy, high-status male when the alternative was a monogamous union with a poor, low-status male. High-status males almost always have numerous wives and lowest status the fewest. Clearly, culture makes a huge difference.
Our society seems to think love is possessing someone. Studies show that 70% of all marriages involve "cheating". The typical marriage attitude is "you're mine" and "boy you are in trouble if you so much as look at someone else." This, of course, is the opposite of love and ignores the basic human fact that we are designed to enjoy sexual variety. This, of course, is the opposite of love and ignores the basic human fact that we are designed to enjoy sexual variety. See Time magazine "Infidelity - It may be on our genes", 8/15/94 issue, for extensive study showing how more than one sexual partner is historically more natural than monogamy. This is perhaps the biggest (unkept?) secret in our culture and within the church.
Sexual Pleasure Sharing - Much More Than Intercourse
Often we fear our sexuality based on society pressures, religion or past unpleasant experiences. Therefore, we are often unable to experience the beauty of sexual pleasure sharing. When we think of sex, we usually only think of intercourse.
Whole body sexuality can be even more loving and intimate with no concern about disease. For women, intercourse is often not the best way for maximum pleasure, but many men do not know how to give a woman maximum pleasure. Tantra sex techniques can also be very intimate and wonderful. Having our naked bodies caressed all over and warmly held with love and affection is as vital to our emotions as eating and drinking is to our health.
Maximum sexual pleasuring techniques are a learned skill. Only the very basics come naturally which are not always the most enjoyable. But when we have been taught that sex is so dirty that we must save it for marriage, and then only have one partner, how do we learn maximum pleasure sharing? Sexual pleasure sharing is learned just as walking and talking is learned, by experience and practice.
We do not "give ourselves away" by sharing sexually. When we share, we each gain more, the knowledge we share is not reduced but expanded through reaction and sharing with others. Similarly in sexual sharing we don't save it, we share it and grow and find more and more meaningful experiences. If at some point an exclusive relationship is desired, such as in marriage, sexual pleasure in that relationship will be enhanced by previous experimentation and experiences with a selective but wider range of trusted intimate friends.
Women's More Equal Sex is Better Sex
Loving open Americans sex lives are better than ever. There's been a phenomenal change in women's sexuality and, therefore, their partners. Women are saying "I'm an equal partner in bed. I expect pleasure too." Many men like the "new" more aggressive woman, and being on the receiving end at times and are learning how to please a woman and enjoy foreplay and afterplay. Studies all show that those who can communicate about sex are the ones with the best sex lives. We need to practice more oral sex - opening our mouths and discussing what we enjoy the most or what we want to try.
Changing Views Of Sexuality Leads To A Better Society
It seems obvious with all its sexual repression the United States is not a sexually healthy society. Sexuality is also a very important issue in determining the happiness of people in other areas. Sexual repression leads to abuse, frustration and psychological damage. In a society full of tease and titillation, but little meaningful sexuality (sex is so dirty have to save it for marriage and then suppose to be experts with no experience), all sort of bad things happen out of sexual frustration.
Our society needs to learn how to discuss sexuality openly if we are going to start healing our unhealthy sexuality and sexual abuse. This is especially important to women, many of who are fed up with all the men whose only thought of sexually is thrusting genital sex, while most women seek more intimacy and variety of many types of sexual stimulation. In the past (especially in biblical times) when women were more just there to serve men, this was less of a problem.
Today, women are demanding their own sexual fulfillment and experiencing a great deal of frustration from men having no idea how to maximize the sexual pleasure of a woman. Responsible Non-monogamy allows men to be trained by different women in different sexual techniques and for women to enjoy different techniques from different men. Together, we can all learn and grow in our knowledge of giving and receiving sexual pleasure as part of loving caring, other pleasure centered relationships.
The number of sex-positive people is rapidly growing in the United States. More and more people are becoming willing to be open and admit their needs, desires, and frustrations. Many sex-positive groups are leading workshops and are open to leaning and experimentation. Often it's women that have become the prime activists in this area since they are demanding their own sexual fulfillment.
Feminism's Fight For A Sex-Positive Society
Feminism today is the fight to gain women's equality in all aspects of life including the right to sexual equality and pleasure by having the right to make their own decisions over their sexuality. They fight thousands of years of a male dominated culture. "Since women have been used as sexual icons for so many years without being the primary receivers of sexual pleasure, gaining control of women's sexuality and educating women about their sexual pleasure potential is a crucial feminist issue," says Devra Schwartz, owner of Passionate Living, which use to be a magazine promoting sex-positive attitudes and non-monogamy as a possible better choice for women.
Traditional Monogamy Also A Valid Moral Choice
Polyamory is not for everyone. For some they just can't handle the jealousy issues or their own insecurity. Or, based on your religious beliefs or background, polyamory may not be for you. But you should select your lovestyle based on knowing that polyamory is just moral and legitimate as monogamy. You should explore to the extent you wish various lovestyle options knowing you have many legitimate, moral choices, not just monogamy. If you choose traditional monogamy that is your legitimate choice, but because it was your choice, not thrust upon you as the only choice by society.
Dave, Liberated Christians, Phoenix Az
Teaching Positive Intimacy and Women Centered Sexuality
Exposing False Traditional Biblical Teachings
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