A few days ago I wrote about polygamy after hearing of a sect leader in the US who had several wives who were not even adult. Of course I thought a bit more about the connections of sex and religion and the concept of polygamy. I noticed that there seems to be always extremes about this topic.
Look at all those religions or religious groups that advocate polygamy. It is usually the women who are subordinate to the husbands. You can find the marriage of several women to one man in cultures and societies where men are dominating. They were the ones who made the rules, they were the ones to write the scriptures and thus they were the ones who decided that women are the weak gender and need to obey men. Islam is again and again criticized for the fact that women are not treated equally to men, that they are suppressed and mistreated. Also in Hinduism there are many points where you can see this male dominance.
In many religions, sects and groups with certain belief, this view on women leads to extremes. Either sex becomes very important and they try to have as much as possible, mostly with as many people as possible, or they fully neglect it, stop having sex and don’t even think about getting in touch with women.
I have met a lot of people who formerly have been in sects and many who were still. Look at ISKCON, the International Society of Krishna Consciousness with its headquarters in Vrindavan. They believe sex is a sin. They can marry but even then they are only allowed to have sex for one purpose: for having a child. Not at any other time. If you have sex merely for pleasure, it is a sin. There are others, like the Brahma Kumaris sect, who also say any sexual action or even thought is a sin. It is dirty, it is sinful and obviously against God’s wish. The Sadhus in Hinduism and the Catholic priests, the monks of different religions, so many have announced that they go in celibacy for the rest of their lives.
On the other hand there are movements where sex is the main topic and everything is about sex! In some, or maybe most, it is allowed only for men to have sex with several women and not for women to have several men. There are some philosophies though, like what is now called Tantra in the west, in which people live their whole lives around sex. When such ideas are spread, additionally with a religious thought behind them and an organization above, the groups turn to sects and the way is open to abuse again.
It is usually either a lot of sex or no sex at all. They go into extremes, sometimes because they believe women are dirty, sinful and not God-like and other times because they believe women are divine and a lot of sex gives them a lasting divine experience. Why don’t we just get into balance? Why is it one extreme or the other? See sex as a natural part of life, don’t make it bigger than it is and don’t neglect it. It won’t work. Women and men are equally made by God and sometimes drawn towards each other. It is normal and natural. Don’t use God or religion to deny nature.