THE POINT OF IT ALL: SEXUAL UNION
Why do we have marital sex? Because it is a very essential or integral part of achieving sexual union with the person we love, to whom we have given ourselves completely.
Physical sexual union symbolizes or represents what it also helps to bring about, namely, the deeper human union – psychological, emotional, and spiritual. But achieving the personal union in and through the physical sexual union is a challenge, especially for men, because it is so easy to get caught up in, and focus almost exclusively on, the powerful physical pleasures of the sexual union.
One of the obstacles to sexual union is the differences between the sexes regarding "sexual union." (Of course, those differences are also an important part of what drives us to seek sexual union.) Men go for physical union more quickly, more intensely, and more superficially (with great emphasis on the physical, and insufficient attention to the deeper levels of union). Women need to be slowly and patiently drawn into the act of union, because what they want is deeper.
Men benefit from this difference because they learn to go deeper, to understand that sexual union goes much deeper than just the physical union. Women benefit because the deeper union that they desire and, in a way, demand (as a price for being fully engaged in the union) – often successfully, because men find the price well worth paying – is more satisfying to them, and they appreciate the intensity with which their beloved craves them.
Husbands need to meditate or reflect more on the meaning of sexual union. That is one important reason for this website. Who would have thought that we need to get men to think more about sex?!
Just one note about something I find interesting. If you do an internet search for "sexual union", most of the websites that come up tend to be either definitional (defining what the act of physical union is) or Christian or Eastern.
If you put in "marital sexual union" they are mostly Christian. (Interestingly, when you do a yahoo image web search for "marital sexual union," it basically comes up empty! Of course, for "sexual union" the images are endless . . . and mostly pornographic.)
If you put in "sacred sexual union" they are almost all "Eastern" (e.g., Tantric).
Why is it that purely secular sites about sex rarely speak in terms of "union" at all? Maybe there is a tendency to think of sex as acts in which people achieve something themselves or do things to each other (e.g., have the biggest orgasm, or give a partner the biggest orgasm). This is not surprising, in one way, because if you focus on sex as a feeling of our senses, it is something that literally cannot be "shared." You can't "share" your orgasm with your partner, just as, strictly speaking, you can't share your food with someone else. In order to truly share something, it can't be just physical. The most you can do with material things is divide them up -- that's what we usually mean when we "share" material things. But really sharing things happens when you focus on the immaterial; you can share an idea, for example. And you can share the love expressed in physical sexual union.
The absence of much focus on sexual union in our culture probably reflects the much more individualistic concepton of sexuality that has grown so powerful in our culture and deeply influences our typical (often unconscious) views of sex. The union of persons in the marital act is not the prism through which we look at sex.
The Surprising Rarity of Sexual Union