So let’s talk about sex and sexual transmutation.
Because it’s a vital topic for anyone interested in achievement, self-development, psychological maturity, and spiritual growth.
Sexual transmutation is also another one of those grossly misunderstood topics. Let’s change that right now....
What is Sexual Transmutation?
Napoleon Hill’s self-help classic, Think and Grow Rich, is how many individuals first learn about sexual transmutation:
“Sex transmutation is simple and easily explained. It means the switching of the mind from thoughts of physical expression, to thoughts of some other nature.”
Now, Hill’s definition is a good start, but we can go deeper.
Sexual transmutation is the process of converting sexual energy into some other drive, motivation, or energy of a higher order.
But what does that mean?
What is Sexual Energy?
To clarify this, let’s look at sexual energy through a visualization of the seven chakras.
The chakras are said to be seven energy centers in the body where each chakra relates to a specific gland in the endocrine system.
Sexual energy is part of your life force. This energy arises from the first or root chakra and the second or sacral chakra.
The root chakra is associated with your reproductive glands while the sacral chakra relates to your adrenals.
Each of the seven chakras connects through a spiraling energy channel that climbs up the body (kundalini). And this entire energy system is fueled by the base: the home of sexual energy.
Sexual Energy and Pleasure
The sacral chakra deals with pleasure. Although there are a few exceptions, most animals do not have sex for pleasure. Humans, macaques, orangutans, gorillas, and chimpanzees, however, do.
When the sacral chakra is in balance, this drive for sexual pleasure stays in moderation. But when something obstructs and weakens this sexual energy center, it leads to all kinds of problems like sex addictions, perversions, porn addictions, and aggressive behavior. (More on these problems below.)
Sexual Transmutation: From Pleasure to Willpower
Expressing sexual energy through sex and desire dissipates this energy. That is, sexual energy goes in one of two directions: out through the sex organ or up into the higher energy centers.
The basis for sexual transformation is to take your sexual energy and channel it into a higher energy center.
The chakra above the sacral is the solar plexus chakra, which deals with willpower.
So if a person lacks willpower, there’s a good chance that their sexual energy is leaking out via excessive sex, masturbation, stimulation, desire, worry, or overthinking.
It’s for this reason the self-help literature discusses sexual transmutation. For young men in particular, if they can channel their drive for sex and woman into their professional work, they increase their willpower to realize their goals and achieve more.
There’s a lot more to sexual transmutation beyond achievement. But before we proceed, let’s outline how achievement-driven sexual transmutation works.
How to Use Sexual Energy Transmutation to Manifest Your Desires
Using sexual energy transmutation to achieve a particular goal or manifest something (or someone) in your life is a straightforward process.
Step 1: Clarify what you want.
Determine your goal:
Write it down.
Create an image in your mind.
Bring it alive in your imagination with sight, sound, and motion.
Associate positive emotions to the outcome.
Keep the goal to yourself.
Contrary to popular belief, both goal research and my personal experience suggest that it’s best to keep your desire or goal to yourself instead of announcing it to the world.
Step 2: Channel your attention toward your goal.
Most often, our energy and attention get fragmented into many directions including sexual desires. To use sexual transmutation, you’re going to channel this sexual energy into the image of your desired outcome.
Remember, we lose sexual energy that flows out. So instead of expressing this drive, maintain your attention on the goal you desire. It’s for this reason Napoleon Hill wrote about the importance of having a “burning desire.” Your desire for what you want must be greater than your drive for pleasure right now.
Connect with why you want it—your purpose for achieving it.
Step 3: Maintain your focus and be patient.
With renewed vigor, new ideas will likely begin to present themselves. The universe, as Hill writes, beings to conspire in your favor. You’ll align with allies to support you on your quest. And momentum will start to build.
Stick with this process long enough, and depending on the object of your desire, you’ll begin to manifest it.
Why Does This Process Work?
Instead of directing your awareness to random fleeting thoughts and pleasures, you’re channeling your life force energy into creating something in the physical world.This transmutation process occurs naturally for the Magician archetype. Over time, you’ll learn nuances of this process and refine it based on your disposition.
What are the Limitations of this Form of Sexual Transmutation?
Eventually, you may sense a deeper calling. Or, you might become uninspired by using your sexual energy in this way.
Through a spiritual awakening, you may begin to see that your ego is playing a game. The ego is always creating new desires, not based on the Spirit’s Will, but on envy, greed, anger, and fear. Attainment begins to lose its thrill.
Then, there’s a shift from external achievement to inner transformation. You begin to see that you can use sexual transmutation to transform yourself. Then, things get more interesting.
7 Reasons to Pursue Sexual Transmutation
So now let’s quickly review some of the reasons individuals may be interested in sexual transmutation and the potential benefits it can produce.
1) Improve Your Physical Health
A primary advantage of sexual transmutation is that it can radically improve our vitality, longevity, and overall physical health. Also, if you suffer from lower back or knee pain, there’s a good chance it’s related to your kidneys (see below), and sex transmutation can help.
2) Achieve Material Success
We discussed this above. Higher achievement is the most common application of sex transmutation.
3) Cultivate More Physical Energy
Semen has over 200 different proteins, vitamins, minerals and amino acids. It’s a treasure chest of nutrients that the body and mind need to perform at its best. Sexual activity can deplete your life force while sexual transmutation cultivates it (see below).
4) Unlock More Creativity
Sexual energy is also creative energy. And the sexual energy we don’t expend during sex can be channeled into the creative process.
5) Improve Your Sex Life
When we deplete our sexual energy, we have a low libido or sex drive. In men, this often leads to impotence. Through sexual transmutation and having sex in moderation, one can improve their sex life.
6) Develop Martial and Internal Power
Eastern material artists and qigong practitioners use sexual transmutation to cultivate internal power by converting sexual energy into chi (see below). Many professional athletes do so as well.
7) Achieve Higher Spiritual Development
Perhaps the highest use of sexual transmutation is to use it to awaken and cultivate the Spirit within.
What Blocks Sexual Transmutation?
Sexual transmutation, in a fundamental sense, is a natural process. When we’re not transmuting sexual energy into creative energy and willpower, it means something is blocking or misdirecting it.
Buddhists call this misdirection indulgence while Taoists describe it as leakage. Our life force, in essence, leaks out of us. The whole objective of meditation and the alchemical practices in the East is to stop this leakage.
The source of this leakage is in the mind: random thoughts and negative emotions like anger, fear, and guilt. (Guilt blocks the sacral chakra.)
In Tibetan Buddhism, they explain that the source of human suffering is the Three Poisons: attraction, aversion, and delusion, or desire, aggression, and ignorance. All three poisons cause leakage.
The Art of Seminal Retention (For Men Only)
A critical aspect of sexual transmutation taught in many ancient philosophies from Asia and India is seminal retention.
Seminal retention is the practice of abstaining from ejaculation. These ancient traditions believed that they could cultivate their life force through seminal retention to achieve greater vitality and longevity.
Both the nutrients within the semen as well as the life essence with the sperm itself, when retained, can be used and absorbed back into your body to support your higher energy centers, your nervous system, and your brain.
Have you ever noticed an immediate reduction in energy after ejaculating? Perhaps you’ve observed a slight sense of depression as well?
The French term La petite mort translates to “the little death” and is used to describe a sexual orgasm.What if men weren’t designed to release their seed (except for procreation)?
I’m not suggesting this is necessarily so, but it’s a question worthy of consideration, for it is true, it might help explain the current poor state of masculinity in our society.
Meeting an Ancient Taoist
Many years ago, I had the opportunity to meet a man from China who claimed to be 93 years old. I say “claimed to be” because he looked like he was in his early 50s, and I was (and still am) a bit skeptical.
But he trained in the ancient Taoist ways. This Taoist told me that in the old way of practicing these arts, you abstain from sex throughout your life—you never “break the seal” as they say in certain Taoist texts.
He said that even Taoists nuns (women practice and train separately from men) abstain from sex. Finally, he said that this was the secret to longevity and cultivating one’s energy.
As it says in the Hui-Ming Ching:
“When life energy is not excited or stirred by desire, we will become immortal.”
Again, I share this story merely as an idea to reflect on.
Ejaculation Frequency for Optimal Health
That said, in many Taoist texts you’ll find guidelines for the frequency of ejaculation that’s safe for men interested in preserving their life force.The younger you are, the more life force you have. As you get older, this life force depletes.
Teenagers: Sex once a day
In your 20s: Once every three days
In your 30s: Once a week
In your 40s: Once every two weeks
In your 60s: Once every 100 days
Signs of excessive ejaculation include chronic fatigue, stiffness in the joints, and pain in your knees and lower back.And for sexual energy transmutation, these frequency ranges are probably too generous.
What About Pornography?
You won’t find much about pornography in ancient texts. Porn is a new problem that plagues the latest generations. Here, however, we can turn to scientific research.
Studies show that pornography rewires the brain, making it less connected and less active. (Citation)
Porn usage easily becomes compulsive and addictive. (Citation)
Masturbation and pornography create problems with arousal, sexual desire, and sexual performance. (Citation)
Countless other studies point to the harmful effects of pornography. Here are some shocking stats about porn usage.
From the context of sexual transmutation, pornography is perhaps it’s the greatest destroyer of sexual energy in men. If you need assistance in this area, check out the NoFap website or just Google “nofap.”
The Three Treasures of Taoism
For the remainder of this sexual transmutation guide, I’m going to take a more Eastern perspective.
Anyone familiar with Taoism will know the three treasures: Jing, Qi, and Shen.Jing, Qi, and Shen are energetic substances or frequencies that control many aspects of our health, behavior, psyche, and spiritual development.
But even though these three treasures are considered three different substances, they are of the same essence, similar to how water can take the form of gas, liquid, and solid (ice).
Jing – Essence
Jing is the lowest vibration of the three treasures. Many people mistake Jing as sexual energy or seminal fluid, but excessive sex does deplete one’s Jing. Jing most closely translates in English to Life’s Essence.
Qi – Energy
The Essence of the body converts to Qi (or Chi), which most closely translates to energy. Qi is a higher vibration than Jing, and it transports information throughout the body’s energy system.
Shen – Spirit
Shen, the highest or most refined vibration, is the energy of consciousness. Many schools of Taoism consider Shen the individual’s Spirit. Shen manifests as bright white light, and its frequency is closest to Heaven.
Taoist Energy Transmutation: The Return of the Spirit
Perceiving sexual transmutation through the lens of Taoism then, the primary goal in this process isn’t material but spiritual.
The original alchemists weren’t early Western chemists attempting to transmute lead into gold. Instead, these ancient Chinese Taoists were converting the elemental substances in their bodies.
These Inner Alchemists sought to refine their Jing into Qi by preserving their Jing (through seminal retention) and cultivating their Qi through a healthy, balanced lifestyle, virtuosity, and various Qigong practices (including standing meditations like Zhan Zhuang).
Then, they sought to convert their Qi into Shen through meditative techniques designed to turn the body’s torso into a cauldron that refines the Qi. This alchemical process transmutes their energy into Shen or the Original Spirit.
I’ll provide resources below for those who are interested in exploring this topic more deeply.
Sexual Transmutation Starts With Healthy Kidneys
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the kidneys are responsible for growth, reproduction, urinary function, bones, brain, and the storehouse of our essence (Jing).
If the kidneys are deficient in what’s called vital-qi, the guardian qi (the subtle energy field around the body) will also be weak. And this deficiency lowers the immune system, which affects the rest of the body.
The kidneys are one of the essential organs in the human body, and we tend to give them little attention.
Improper regulation of sexual energy depletes Jing and causes weakness in this organ over time. Coldness in the limbs is a common sign of kidney deficiency.
Regardless of your reason for pursuing sexual transmutation, it’s a great idea to heal and strengthen your kidneys first.
Tips on How to Strengthen the Kidneys
There are many ways to strengthen your kidneys and cultivate your Life Essence (sexual energy):
Do a kidney cleanse.
Eat a diet that supports kidney health.
Foods that support proper kidney function include black beans, kidney beans, blueberries, blackberries, spirulina, kelp, seaweed, pumpkin seeds, black sesame seeds, walnuts, chestnuts, barley, millet, and dark, leafy green vegetables.
Try Chinese herbs.
Take Six Flavor Teapills (Liu Wei Di Huang Wan) to support kidney health.
Avoid cold foods and excessive raw food.
The kidneys and the liver don’t like anything cold—especially during winter months and in cold climates. The more sensitive you become to your body’s energy system, the more averse to cold foods (like ice cream) you’ll likely become.
Reduce your media consumption or go on a 30-day media fast.
Why is this important? Advertising, television programming, video games, and films are entrenched with sexual images designed to stimulate you. And these images draw your energy out, whether you want them too or not. Many genres of music like pop and R&B do so as well.
Avoid sexual stimulation for a few weeks.
Avoid sexual activity, masturbation, or sexual stimulation of any kind. Although Jing is not sperm, men lose Jing through sex and ejaculation. Conserving your Essence is a primary key to sexual transmutation.
Face your fears.
Each organ relates to a specific predominant emotion. For the kidneys, it’s fear. Excessive fear damages the kidneys. Containing your fear is a vital step for entire mature adulthood.
Practice kidney qigong.
The book Qigong Empowerment offers excellent medical qigong exercises, including kidney qigong.
Keep your cell phone and technology at a distance.
Over a dozen studies show that radiation from cell phones impair sperm function. Never keep your cell phone in your pants pockets, and always keep it away from your head (always use a headset).
How to Build a Foundation for Spiritual Energy
Transmuting sexual energy into spiritual energy can occur when the internal conditions are present. And it’s up to us to cultivate these internal conditions.
So what are these conditions?
Foundation #1: An Energetically Open Body
The body’s energetic system must flow freely, but for most individuals, we have many blockages throughout the body. Qigong stretching is designed to help gently open the body.
Then, learn how to sink all your tension down into the ground through a practice like Zhan Zhuang.
Foundation #2: A Calm, Abiding Mind
Thoughts create tension in the body. When you’re able to quiet your mind, your body’s energy is naturally preserved.There are many methods for quieting the mind including meditative practices, breathing techniques and proper sleep.
Foundation #3: A Lightened Mood
Fear, anger, and seriousness all block the body’s energy system. In fact, emotions stuck in the body is the primary source of our energetic blockage.
Lightening one’s mind opens energetic channels. Access the precocious child in you and a sense of playfulness. Smile and hum for no reason at all. Try getting a HeartMath emWave2 and practice their heart coherence technique.
Even if you didn’t go any further, setting up these three foundations can radically transform your life experience for the better.
Resources on Inner Alchemy
To learn about this Taoist alchemical process, see Liu Hua-Yang’s Cultivating the Energy of Life. Another ancient text, often called the Dragon-Tiger Classic explores this alchemical process in detail as an external physical process, sexual transmutation, and internal energy cultivation.
And if you’re looking for practical instruction, see Damo Mitchell’s Daoist Nei Gong and White Moon on the Mountain Peak. Mitchell provides the most comprehensive guidance for Westerner’s that I’ve come across.
Also see Damo Mitchell’s latest book, A Comprehensive Guide to Nei Gong. It’s far more comprehensive than his Daoist Nei Gong.
Like many people, I was first introduced to these ideas from qigong teacher Mantak Chia. Books like Taoist Secrets of Love and The Multi-Orgasm Man were tantalizing, and his practices were easy to follow.
However, I’ve come to believe that many of Chia’s methods are potentially harmful. I don’t think it’s advisable to force your sexual energy upward (as you do in his “Power Lock” method).
Cultivating the body’s energy is a natural process. It’s supposed to happen spontaneously when the conditions are appropriate (which is where meditative practices come in).
Also, Chia suggests that we only lose Jing through ejaculation and not sex itself. Even without ejaculation, sex most definitely drains energy, especially in men.