Sexual Healer or Sex Worker?

Is a Sexual Healer (or Tantric Healer) the same as a Sex Worker?

If the definition of “sex worker” is anyone who deals with the subject of sex, sexual dysfunction, or utilizes somatic treatments that provide sexual pleasure—then yes, in that broad frame, many if not all “Tantra” (neo/traditional) providers are sex workers. However, for the vast majority of Sexual Healers/Tantric Healers there is a big difference between what is commonly provided by sex workers (aka prostitutes) and what Tantric Healers or Sexual Healers provide—even though they might use therapeutic pleasure as a session treatment. This difference is highlighted by the intention and purpose for the service being provided.

Intention & Purpose

Sex workers are due respect and should not be disrespected or demeaned for their service. Common sex work service is mostly providing pleasure recreation, or sexual stress relief, which are worthy outcomes that shouldn’t be belittled or minimized. However, any sexual healing that occurs is most often an incidental and unintended benefit.

What is important to consider is the intention and purpose that the service provider has for their services, as well as their ability to steward the client’s experience with the intention of ahimsa (harmlessness) which monitors and adjusts to meet the capabilities of the client to contain and assimilate their experience constructively.

SexualHealing Sexual Healer or Sex Worker?If a provider’s services are solely about an exchange of a sexual favor for money, there might not be much regard for the client’s experience other than reaching climax. For some clients this by itself can provide a measure of relief. However, if sexual healing is the intention there are many more considerations to observe which the provider may or may not be capable of or trained for. Being able to be sexual with a client doesn’t make someone a sexual healer even though healing could incidentally or haphazardly occur.

If the intention for the service is to provide sexual healing, then there are many aspects which need to be handled appropriately and responsibly so that harming the client is prevented (due to the deep psychological triggers and unresolved trauma which is released).

When working with anyone, sex worker or Tantric Healer, it is imperative that the session’s intention and purpose be clear and that informed consent and boundaries are understood and abided by. If sexual healing is the intention, it’s important that the service provider is qualified and capable of providing ahimsa service responsibly.

Sex in Sex Work and Tantric Healing

It’s possible that a sex worker has this level of training and ability. Typically those sex workers who do and who identify as Tantric providers, offer what is known as “full service” sessions, or Hieros Gamos ritual ceremonies, or Tantric Initiation ceremonies. Most Tantric Healers or Sexual Healers don’t provide “full service” in their sessions. It’s important to clearly understand all treatments and activities that will be part of a session and maintain the integrity of that container for the session.

Most Tantric Healers and Sexual Healers draw a line at sexual intercourse with clients and don’t cross it. People who seek relief from sexual trauma symptoms are likely to be re-wounded or traumatized by having intercourse with their healer. People who seek sex from a sex worker expect intercourse or other sexual acts—it is what is being paid for.

The intent of Tantric Healing or Sexual Healing is healing, and there are numerous treatments that don’t include sexual intercourse to accomplish this. Any responsible service provider (either sex worker or Tantric Healer) will only provide treatments and activities that the client is asking for and is capable of experiencing constructively and positively.

Adequate Training is Imperative B4 Providing Services

An issue comes up when someone in the neo-Tantra community attends a Tantra workshop or “puja” and then starts offering healing sessions without any real training. Whether they are labeled a sex worker, or Tantric Healer doesn’t matter, it’s their intention and purpose, training and ability for Ahimsa, responsibly implemented that is most important to be clear about and confident in.

There have also been some unscrupulous Tantric Healers who have used session treatments as a “date opportunity” to get their personal sex needs met—causing harm to clients. Additionally, there are some neophyte Tantra practitioners who exploit Tantra’s openness to sexual energy and sexually take advantage of other practitioners and/or clients.

The principles for safe sexual healing also apply to Tantra practitioners who share informal/nonprofessional Tantric exercises or practice sessions, as well as in personal relationships.

Much more on this subject, including what to expect in Tantric Healing / Sexual Healing sessions, how to create a safe container of consent and boundaries, and how to choose a sexual healer is in the book Safe Sexual Healing: a Guidebook for Healers and Clients.

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Sunyata Satchitananda

Counselor, Coach, Certified Sexual Healer at Sunyata Satchitananda
Sunyata has been a minister and spiritual counselor for 30+ years. He works with men and women, and couples to heal from emotional and sexual abuse and to achieve relationship harmony and fulfillment.

"Sunyata was the best find on my sexual healing journey. He UNDERSTANDS, GETS and PROVIDES safe sexual healing." —Grace
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