We have all seen the Yin and Yang symbol and we may think we know what it means. But in this episode, let’s talk about what the different energies mean when it comes to sex. In our male driven society, sex is often looked at as Yang. But men and women have both Yin and Yang energies. The trick is to use both your Yin and Yang side to improve your sex life! Listen to find out how.
When I was in the 7th grade, I remember the symbol for Yin and Yang became this big thing. People were drawing it on notebooks, on their shoes, I think it might have even been part of a clothing line or brand. I just remember it being everywhere. I was pretty naïve back then, I started hearing things about the Yin Yang symbolized 69…which had to do with sex, but I had no idea what that even was. And while they may have been partially true, what it really alludes to is so much deeper than that.
In Ancient Chinese Philosophy, Yin and Yang symbolized the concept of dualism (dark/light, negative/positive). Dualism is about opposite contrary forces and they are actually complementary, interconnected, and interdependent in the natural world. How they give rise to each other as they interrelate to one another.
So what do they mean and symbolize? Yin is characterized as slow, soft, yielding, and passive; and is typically associated with femininity. When we are feeling most emotionally connected to our partner, that’s Yin energy. And we need that Yin energy to lead us to the sexual connection. Yang, by contrast, is fast, hard, solid, focused, and active; and is typically associated with masculinity. This is the sexually aggressive energy. It’s powerful and the driving force of the sexual encounter.
And while these different energies are typically associated with the feminine or the masculine, we all have both inside of us and both are necessary at different times and within all relationships. We need both. Someone has to be the risk taker and start the encounter. That can be tough. But we also need the person who can be the receiver and be open to that driving energy.
Marriage and the sexual relationship is about complementary opposites coming together to make a united whole. This is NOT about “you complete me” or anything like that. But taking the strengths of each individual to complement both to create something beautiful together.
In the ancient Taoist traditions of China, the sexual understanding and practices are about balance and equality which lead to wonderful sexual experiences that are beautiful, healthy, and life-enhancing. In traditional practices of Tantra, we find similar practices, which also seek to create balance and harmony in the sexual relationship.
But, in our western/American culture, what we have traditionally seen is mostly the masculine Yang elements, which has led to a dysfunctionally dominant masculine and a dysfunctionally submissive feminine.
While the sexual revolution in the 1960s and 70s created a lot more equality between the sexes, the more masculine Yang is still very dominant while the more feminine Yin hasn’t really been strengthened. Think about what we see in media and culture about sex. It’s all about harder, faster, louder, stronger. We especially see this in pornography. Most pornography today is misogynistic poison. It’s full of violence toward women. It is full of Yang energy, that isn’t balanced with the beautiful humanity, vulnerability and love that good sex has.
But what about in the pursuit of the sexual experience? The Yang tends to be more dominant; it is in pursuit of the sexual experience and brings the passion but often lacks the emotional component needed for a long-standing satisfying relationship. But if left to the Yin, you’d probably be in a sexless marriage. They aren’t going to initiate, so there wouldn’t be much sex. And if there is sex, it’s often described as “vanilla” or boring, because Yin lacks creativity and sensuality.
Yang is good, but not without the balance of Yin. A sexuality that is based solely on the Yang elements will get boring over time, requiring more and more intensity for satisfaction. Balance it with Yin elements, that part where we let our partner touch us. Where we are being a good receiver. Where there is also a softer side. With both of these kinds of energy, you can have wonderful sex forever. But too many times we are so worried about our partners experience, and we want to stay in control – the Yang energy, that we don’t take the time to receive, the Yin energy. The key is equality between the two.
Equality in the sexual energies means no right and wrong. The male is equal to the female. The receptive equal to the active. The follow equal to the leading. So when two people come together as complementary equals, they are able to play with both polarities of Yin and Yang.
But in order to meet your partner as a complementary equal, it requires that you are balanced within. We all have Yin and Yang qualities within us. Hard and soft. Tender and firm. Vulnerable and protective. It’s not that men are Yang and women are Yin. We both are both. The more balanced you are within yourself, the more freely you can play with the polarities inside of you. That’s where sex gets really fun.
The following are considered more Yin activities: flirting, tender kissing, feeding each other, eye gazing, synchronized breathing, sensual massage, hugging, communicating, and bathing each other.
Activities considered Yang are: deep kissing, oral love, g-spot stimulation, erotic talk, using sexy toys, intercourse, sexual massage, and orgasm.
Can you see how doing predominantly one or the other could be a problem? And how fun it can be to mix and match them in each of us? Think about oral sex. The Yang is the giver. The Yin is the receiver. These acts, whether performed on the woman or the man are deeply intimate and erotic. There’s the balance of Yin and Yang.
Combining the Yin and Yang in the bedroom requires that we tap into both sides of our sexual nature. We have to evaluate where we are and where our partner is at any given moment. Am I in Yang energy? Where is my partner? Are they in Yang energy too? Then maybe I need to move towards more Yin energy. Are we both in Yin energy, someone probably needs to move into Yang.
I find that after years of being in Yang energy and being the sexual pursuer, often the man gets resentful and frustrated and completely backs off and adopts more of a Yin energy hoping that their partner will step up into the Yang energy. Sometimes they do, but often they don’t. Which is what often leads to a sexless marriage. Neither one is willing to be the pursuer. Or often times a woman is more put off by a man’s Yin energy. It’s too soft for her. She wants a harder approach. But then a woman in Yin energy may be put off by a man’s yang energy if it’s too aggressive. There needs to be balance, which is why understanding where your partner is and what the relationship might need is important. A relationship needs both the Yin and the Yang. But if we can be sensitive to where our partner is and help draw out the other part of them their energy that complements their own that’s when things get really good.