Unknown Facts About The Kama Sutra‏


The exact origins of the Kama Sutra are quite vague, but it was written between the 1st and 4th centuries AD by a man called Vatsyayana, who lived in the North Indian city of Benares – now called Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh, India.

It was first translated into English by the 19th Century British explorer Sir Richard F. Burton in 1876. Born in 1821, the adventurer, who spoke 25 languages, came across the Kama Sutra in Bombay in 1842 and became fascinated with Indian erotica. Following a visit to a prostitute, Burton, who had three Indian mistresses said:

“We British never knew of this kind of love-making. Had we known, we would not have ruined the lives of so many British virgins.”

Kama Sutra Illustration

Kama Sutra Illustration

In 1883 Burton risked prosecution and imprisonment under the Obscene Publications Act after publishing 250 copies of the Kama Sutra privately in Britain. The book did not become legal in Britain until 1963.

It was written in the ancient Sanskrit language. In Sanskrit, Kama means desire and Sutra means rules. In the context of the book “desire” includes singing, reading, poetry and dancing as well as sex.

The Kama Sutra contains a total of 64 sexual positions. Vatsyayana believed there were eight ways of making love, multiplied by eight positions within each of these. In the book, they are known as the 64 Atrs.

Only about 20 per cent of the book is devoted to sexual positions. The remainder gives guidance on how to be a good citizen and insights into men and women in relationships, a bit like Men Are From Mars & Women Are From Venus.

The Kama Sutra describes making love as “divine union”. Vatsyayana believed that sex itself was not wrong, but doing it badly was sinful.

Lovers who suffer from medical complaints such as back pain and arthritis are warned not to attempt some of the Kama Sutra’s positions. Vatsyayana states: “They predispose for rheumatic pains and sciatica.”

After Burton published the Kama Sutra the prudish British Raj banned the book in India. At the same time they also stopped temple prostitutes and child marriages.

The Kama Sutra may have originated in India, but in 1996 the authorities there clamped down on the film “Kama Sutra – A Tale Of Love” and demanded that 14 explicit scenes were cut before it was fit to be shown to Indian audiences.

Kama Sutra Illustration

Kama Sutra Illustration

Code breakers also find the Kama Sutra fascinating as it contains instructions  for making messages unreadable – one of the earliest books to do this. The Kama Sutra included encryption as an art a woman should study, presumably to help her make secret meetings with her lovers.

Kama is the Hindu god of love. The word also refers to the pursuit of love or pleasure, one of the four aims of life in Hindu traditions. Kama is always depicted as a handsome youth, shooting arrows of love that produce love. His wife is Rati.

According to the book a man becomes irresistible to women if he ties the bone of a peacock or hyena which has been covered in gold to his right hand.

It recommends both biting and scratching as ways of improving love-making, but insists on high standards of cleanliness. It states:

“The qualities of good nails are that they should be bright, well set, clean, entire, convex, soft, and glossy in appearance. The defects of teeth on the other hand are that they are blunt, protruding from the gums, rough, soft, large, or loosely set.”

The Kama Sutra also gives tips on the best ways to arrange a house. It suggests that people will be happiest if they have a pot for spitting in, a lute hanging from an elephant’s tooth, a soft bed and pots of flowers

A chapter is devoted to methods of seducing and getting away with sleeping with other men’s wives. But at the end Vatsyayana does admit that men shouldn’t make love to married women.

The book contains an early recipe for Viagra. It suggests that sparrows eggs boiled in milk and then mixed with clarified butter and honey will do wonders for a man’s love life.

There are 10 methods of kissing in the Kama Sutra (including) – the nominal kiss, the probing kiss, the touching kiss, the straight kiss, the bent kiss, the turned kiss, the pressed kiss and the greatly pressed kiss – and four ways to administer the kiss. That gives a total of 40 different ways to kiss a lover.

In April 1998 former president Bill Clinton was handed a copy of the Kama Sutra as he did a walk-about with Canadian Prime Minister Jean Cretien after the Summit of the Americas in Santiago, Chile.

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Arousal Parasomnia


Sleep sex, or sexsomnia, is a form of non-rapid eye movement parasomnia that causes people to engage in various sexual acts while they are asleep. This condition falls within the broad classes of sleep disorders known as parasomnia.

Sleeping

Sleeping Woman

Sexsomnia can include fondling, heterosexual and homosexual intercourse, masturbation, and oral sex. In extreme cases sexsomnia may allegedly even include sexual assault and rape.

The proposed medical diagnosis is NREM Arousal Parasomnia – Sexual Behaviour in Sleep. Sexsomnia is considered a type of non-rapid eye movement sleep parasomnia. Sexsomniacs tend not to remember the acts they perform while they’re asleep.

Sexsomnia could also co-occur alongside other sleep disorders such as sleepwalking, sleep apnea, night terrors and can be triggered by stress, previous sleep deprivation and excessive consumption of alcohol or drugs.

Sleep related epilepsy may be associated with sexual arousal, pelvic thrusting and orgasms, though in these sorts of cases the acts are often remembered. Sexsomnia episodes could also be triggered by physical contact with a bed partner.

Sexual Script


Sexual scripting suggests the importance of meanings and symbols in human sexuality. The idea of sexual script brings a new metaphor and imagery for understanding human sexual encounters as social and learned interactions.

The idea highlights three levels of scripting:

  1. the cultural/historical,
  2. the social/interactive
  3. and the personal/intra-psychic.

Sexual feeling does not simply happen from within the body but needs meanings and symbols which provide cues and clues to enable sexualities to develop.

Sexual scripts can be seen as providing guideline for appropriate sexual behaviour and sexual encounters as sexual behaviour and encounters are learned through culture and others in interactions. It can be linked to theories of sexual desire but is critical of their tendency to stress the purely biological aspects of desire.

Fellatio


Fellatio is oral sex performed upon the penis. It may be performed to induce male orgasm and ejaculation of semen, or it may be used as foreplay prior to sexual intercourse.

Related to fellatio, Deep-throating is an act in which a man’s entire erect penis is inserted deep into the mouth of a partner, in such a way as to enter the receiving partner’s throat. It may be difficult for some people to perform, due to the requirement of suppressing the natural gag reflex.

In ancient Greece and modern Japan, fellatio has been referred to as ‘playing the flute’. Also, the Kama Sutra has a chapter on auparishtaka or ‘mouth congress’. The first known use of the term ‘fellatio’ is around 1893. Further English words have been created based on the same Latin root. A person who performs fellatio upon another may be termed a fellator. Because of Latin’s gender based declension, this word may be restricted by some English speakers to describing a male. The equivalent female term is fellatrix.

The receiver of oral sex is in a position of psychological if not physical vulnerability, and thus is potentially weaker. Bringing a person to climax is a form of exerting control over that person’s physiology and emotions.

The third-century Roman emperor Galienus called fellatio ‘lesbiari’ since women of the island of Lesbos were supposed to have been the introducer of the practice to use one’s lips to give sexual pleasure.

The Ancient Indian Kama Sutra, dating from the first century AD, describes oral sex, discussing fellatio in great detail and only briefly mentioning cunnilingus. However, according to the Kama Sutra, fellatio is above all a characteristic of eunuchs – or, according to other translations, of effeminate homosexuals or transwomen similar to the modern Hijra of India – who use their mouths as a substitute for female genitalia.

Kama Sutra Illustration

Kama Sutra Illustration

The Kama Sutra’s author states that it is also practised by so-called unchaste women but mentions widespread traditional concerns about this being a degrading or unclean practice, with known practitioners being evaded as love partners in large parts of the country. He seems to agree with these attitudes to some extent, claiming that a wise man should not engage in that form of intercourse while acknowledging that it can be appropriate in some unspecified cases.

In Tantric yoga, the same emphasis is placed on the retention and absorption of vital liquids and Sanskrit texts describe how semen must not be emitted if the yogi is to avoid falling under the law of time and death.

In Islamic literature, the only form of sex that is always explicitly prohibited within marriage is sex during menstrual cycles. But the exact attitude towards oral sex is a subject of disagreements between modern scholars of Islam. Authorities considering it objectionable do so because of the contact between the supposedly impure fluids emitted during intercourse and the mouth. Others emphasize there is no decisive evidence to forbid it.

As late as 1976, some doctors were advising women in the eighth and ninth months of pregnancy not to swallow semen lest it induce premature labour, even though it is now known to be safe. Fellatio is sometimes practised during pregnancy as a replacement for vaginal sex by couples looking to engage in a sexually pleasurable activity while avoiding the difficulty of vaginal intercourse during the later stages of pregnancy.

Semen ingestion has also had central importance in some cultures around the world. In the Papua New Guinean Baruya culture, there is a secret ritual in which boys give fellatio to young males and drink their semen, in order to re-engender themselves prior to marriage.

Among the Sambia people of Papua New Guinea, beginning at age seven all males regularly submit to oral penetration by adolescents in a six-stage initiation process, as the Sambia believe that regular ingestion of an older boy’s semen is necessary for a prepubescent youth to achieve sexual maturity and masculinity. By the time he enters mid-puberty he in turn participates in passing his semen on to younger males.

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