If a man buys manure, dirty and foul-smelling in itself, and piles it up on the street in front of his house, it will make things difficult for anyone passing by. But if he spreads the manure on his garden then his seeds will grow. The seeds will become plants and the plants will give flowers and their fragrance will be an invitation to all. Passers-by will be enchanted. You have probably never thought about it, but the fragrance of a flower is nothing but the foul smell of manure – rising upwards from the seed through the plant, the stench of manure becomes the scent of the flower. A bad smell can be transformed into a sweet perfume.
In the same way, sex can become love. But how can one who hates sex ever become filled with love? How can one transform sex when one is its enemy? And so, I stressed the necessity of understanding lust, of knowing sex.
There are three levels of sex and I wish to speak about them now.
The first level of sex is the gross level. For example, a man goes to a prostitute. The experience he gets there cannot be any deeper than physical. A prostitute can sell her body but cannot sell her heart, and, of course, there is no way to sell the soul.
On this level, bodies meet – as in rape. In rape there is no meeting of hearts or souls; rape happens on the physical level only. There is no way to rape a soul; the experience of rape is purely physical. The primary experience of sex is on the physiological level, but those who halt there never attain the fullest experience of sex. They can never know the depths about which I have been speaking. These days, most people have stopped at the physical level.
In this connection, it is important to know that in countries where marriages take place without love, sex stagnates at the physical level. It can never progress beyond that. These marriages can be of two bodies but never of two souls. Love can only exist between two souls. Marriage can have a deeper meaning if it happens for love, but the marriages that take place because of the calculations of pundits and astrologers, or out of considerations of caste or creed or money, can never go deeper than the physical layer.
There is one advantage to this system, in the sense that the body is more stable than the mind, and so in a society in which the body is the basis of marriage, marriages will be more stable. They will last longer because the body is not unstable because the body is an almost constant factor and change creeps very, very slowly, almost imperceptibly into it. The body is in a state of constancy, and those societies which thought it necessary to stabilize the institution of marriage, to remain with monogamy, to leave no possibility for change, had to do away with love; they had to weed out love. Because the heart is the seat of love and the heart is unstable, divorce is inevitable in those societies where marriages are based on love. There can never be stable marriages in those societies because love is fluid. The heart is mercurial; the body is constant, stable.
If there is a stone in your yard it will be in the same place in the evening as it was in the morning, but a flower blooms in the morning, and by evening it droops, falls to the ground. The stone is an inanimate object: whatever it was in the morning it will also be in the evening. A marriage made on the physical level will bring stability, but it will be not unlike that of a stone. This kind of marriage is in the interests of society but is detrimental to the individual.
In such marriages, the sex between husband and wife does not touch the deeper realms; it merely becomes a mechanical routine. The act is simply repeated often and becomes stale; nothing more happens, and the participants become increasingly dull. There is very little difference between going to a prostitute and being in a marriage without love. You buy a prostitute for a night, whereas you purchase a wife for your whole life; this is the only difference. When there is no love a purchase is being made – whether you are hiring a woman for a night or making arrangements for a lifetime. Of course, because of the day-to-day association, a kind of relationship comes into being – and we call it love. This is not love, love is something else altogether. These marriages are simply of the body, and so the relationship can never go any deeper than the physical. None of the manuals and scriptures that have been written about love, from Vatsyayana to Koka Pundit, go deeper than the physical level.
Another level is psychological – of the mind, of the heart. The marriages of couples who fall in love and then get married go a little further, a little deeper than marriages on the physical level. They reach the heart; they reach the psychological depth, but because of monotony they revert to the physical level every day. The institution of marriage that has developed in the West over the last two hundred years is on this level. And because of this, their societies are disjointed and debauched.
The reason for this is that you cannot rely on the mind. Today the mind desires one thing; tomorrow it will ask for something else. It wants one thing in the morning and something else in the evening. What it feels now will be totally different from what it felt only moments ago. You may have heard that Lord Byron before he finally got married, had been intimate with at least sixty to seventy women. But even as he was coming out of the church after his wedding, arm-in-arm with his new bride, he saw a beautiful woman passing by. He was transfixed by her beauty, and for a moment he forgot his new wife, his recent wedding. But he must have been a very honest man, because, as he got into the carriage with his bride, he said to her, ”Did you notice? A strange thing happened just now. Yesterday, before we were married, I was worried as to whether I would really be able to catch you or not – you were the only woman on my mind – but now, when I actually am married to you, I just saw a pretty woman on the side of the road as we came down the church steps, and I forgot you for a moment: my mind started racing after that woman; it crossed my mind, ‘I wonder if I could have that woman?’”
The mind is very changeable, and so societies that wanted to stabilize family life did not allow marriages to reach the psychological plane, they endeavored to halt marriage at the physical level. They said, ”Marry, but not out of love. If you grow into love after marriage, fine; otherwise, be things as they may.”
Stability is possible on the physical level but on the psychological plane, it is very difficult. The sexual experience is deeper and more subtle on the mental plane, and therefore the experience in the West has been more profound than in the East. The West’s psychologists, from Freud to Jung, have written about this second stage of sex, about the psychological level. But the sex about which I am speaking is of the third level, which up to now, has neither been understood in the East nor in the West. That third level of sex is the spiritual level.
Because the body is inert there is a kind of stability on the physical level. There is also a kind of stability on the spiritual level because there is no change on that level either: everything is calm there; there, it is eternal. In between these two stages, the psychological level exists. It is unsteady, like memory.
The experience of the West is on this level, and so marriages break up and families disintegrate. A marriage born out of a meeting of minds cannot produce a stable family situation, and now the trend in the West is towards divorce. Divorces now occur about every two years, but this could also become every two hours! One’s mind can even change in an hour’s time! Society in the West is disjointed. In comparison, Eastern society has been stable, but the East has not been able to fathom the subtle and sublime depths of sex either.
A man and a woman who can meet on the spiritual level, who can unite spiritually – even once – feel they have united for endless lives to come. There is a deep fluidity; timelessness and pure ecstasy are the wedding dowry.
The sex I am talking about is spiritual sex, the divine experience. I desire a spiritual orientation of sex.
And if you comprehend what I am saying, you will realize that the mother’s love for her son is also a part of spiritual sex. You will say that this is a preposterous statement. You will ask what possible sexual relation there can be between a mother and her son? To understand this fully, we have to examine many other aspects of sex and its interaction in the relations among husband, wife, and child.
As I told you, a man and a woman only meet for a time. Their souls also meet but only for a moment, whereas the child remains in the mother’s womb for nine months. During this period its existence is one with that of the mother. The husband also meets the wife at this level – where there is only existence, where there is only beingness – but it is just for a moment and then they separate. Husbands and wives meet for a moment and then jump apart, and so the intimacy that a mother has with her child is not possible with her husband; it cannot be.
The child in the womb breathes the mother’s breath; his heart throbs through the mother’s heart. The child is one with the blood and the life of the mother: he has no individual existence yet; he is still part of the mother. No man can fulfill a woman as much as a son can; no husband can ever give his wife the deep feeling of intimacy a son can give her. As well, a woman’s full growth is incomplete unless she becomes a mother. Unless she attains to motherhood, the full radiance of a woman’s personality, the utmost flowering of her beauty is not possible. A woman can never be fully contented unless she has become a mother, unless she has known the deep, spiritual relationship that exists between mother and child.
And along with this, please bear in mind that as soon as a woman becomes a mother her interest in sex automatically wanes. She has had a deep drink of motherhood; for nine months she has co-existed with a throbbing new life, and now she has little attraction to sex. At times the husband is bewildered by her apathy because he’s becoming a father does not change his attitude to sex in any way; he has no deep relationship with the process of childbirth. With the new life that has been born, the father has no sense of spiritual oneness. Becoming a mother brings about a basic change in a woman, but fatherhood is simply a social institution. A child can grow up without a father, but it has a deep-rooted relationship with the mother.
A new kind of spiritual well-being fills a woman after the birth of a child. If you look at a woman who has become a mother and at one who hasn’t, you will feel the difference in their personalities, in the sense of the ease they project. In a mother, you will find a glow, a calmness – the kind of calmness you see in a river that has reached the plains – but is one who hasn’t yet become a mother you will sense a sort of bubbling fluidity like that of a stream still flowing through the mountains – rumbling, roaring, overflowing its banks, rushing towards the plains. A woman becomes quiet, calm, and serene inside after she becomes a mother. – OSHO