"Making Love is a celebration and a way of honoring the Masculine and Feminine Energy of the Universe (and the masculine and feminine energy within no matter what genders are involved), a way of honoring its perfect interaction and harmony.  It is a blessed way of honoring the Creative Source.  One of the most blessed and beautiful gifts of being in body is the ability to feel on a sensual level."


"It is entirely possible that you could be in a relationship with someone who is not willing or able to do the healing - which does not mean that it is wrong to stay in that relationship.  There could be any number of factors in alignment with the Divine Plan which mandate that you stay in that relationship and do your healing there."


"The human sacrifice practiced in present civilization isn't surrounded by ritual and prayer, doesn't accord respect and dignity to those who are sacrificed.  Human sacrifice in present day terms is a function of poverty and hopelessness - is reduced to the rituals which accompany crack cocaine and drive by shootings."


"Homosexuality - sexual and romantic attraction to beings of the same sex, the same gender - is a natural and normal part of the human experience.  There has been a portion of the population, in every society that has existed on this planet, that was homosexual.  In most tribal societies, homosexuals were accorded honored positions of importance in the cultural scheme of tribal life."

Welcome to a page of Joy to You & Me

The Web Site of Robert Burney and Joy to You & Me Enterprises.

Robert Burney is a codependency therapist, Spiritual teacher, and the author of the Joyously inspirational book

Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls.

On this page is an online column by Spiritual teacher/codependence therapist about his views in relationship to sexuality, sexual orientation, and monogamy .
This is an online column which includes quotes from Codepenence: The Dance of Wounded Souls and quotes from other articles, columns, and web pages written by Robert Burney including an e-mail question and Robert's reply.  The internal links within this article open in a separate browser window.


By Robert Burney
"The gift of touch is an incredibly wonderful gift.  One of the reasons we are here is to touch each other physically as well as Spiritually, emotionally, and mentally.  Touch is not bad or shameful.  Our creator did not give us sensual and sexual sensations that feel so wonderful just to set us up to fail some perverted, sadistic life test.  Any concept of god that includes the belief that the flesh and the Spirit cannot be integrated, that we will be punished for honoring our powerful human desires and needs, is - in my belief - a sadly twisted, distorted, and false concept that is reversed to the Truth of a Loving God-Force. 

We need to strive for balance and integration in our relationships.  We need to touch in healthy, appropriate, emotionally honest ways - so that we can honor our human bodies and the gift that is physical touch.

Making Love is a celebration and a way of honoring the Masculine and Feminine Energy of the Universe (and the masculine and feminine energy within no matter what genders are involved), a way of honoring its perfect interaction and harmony.  It is a blessed way of honoring the Creative Source.

One of the most blessed and beautiful gifts of being in body is the ability to feel on a sensual level.  Because we have been doing human backwards, we have been deprived of the pleasure of enjoying our bodies in a guilt-free, shame-free, manner.  By striving for integration and balance we can start to enjoy our human experience - on a sensual level as well as on the emotional, mental, and Spiritual levels."

(All quotes in this color are from Codepenence: The Dance of Wounded Souls by Robert Burney)

This online column is going to be about my beliefs in relationship to some different facets of sexuality.  I promised this web page a few months ago to an young woman in the eighth grade who sent me an e-mail asking me about my view of teenage pre-marital sex.

I am going to be hitting on several different topics in this column - including sexual orientation and monogamy in addition to teenage sexual expression.  There are various pages of the site in which my beliefs in relationship to sexuality are included in other articles - in an effort to try to keep this column to a reasonable length I will include short quotes from those pages along with a link to the page.  These links will open in a separate browser window so that you can go to that page and read it if you choose and then just collapse the browser window to return to your place in this column.

I will start off with the e-mail query and my reply.

dear friend,
    what do you think about pre-marital sex?  i'm an eight-grader. i need opinion on teenage pre-marital sex.  i need your opinion because i am hoping to have a program started at my school, a sexual abstinence program. thank you. god bless.

I am so sorry that it has taken me so long to address your question.  Things are hectic.  I am going to post a web page dealing with sexuality, but it is going to be a few weeks probably.  So, I wanted to give you the short answer to your question.

I believe that sexuality is a blessed gift - that one of the reasons we are here in body is to Touch each other with Love - Spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically.  Unfortunately in our shame based, emotionally repressive society, things are real screwed up - especially our relationship to our own sexuality.

Sex should be an expression of Love between two people who are connecting on all levels - Spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically - and when there is a real connection and balance between all of those levels, it can be a beautiful, Joyous, and even Sacred thing.  Because of how screwed up society is, it is very difficult for even adults to connect in a healthy and balanced way - and, I believe, virtually impossible for teenagers.

Teenage girls are set up to think their worth is dependent on how popular they are, or if someone loves them - and so often end up allowing themselves to be sexual in an attempt to get love - which can be a very painful and demoralizing experience that has a very adverse effect on their self-esteem and self respect.

Teenage boys are less emotionally mature than girls and have almost no capacity for an emotionally healthy relationship.  They get so much indoctrination in how being a man involves being sexual that they are too often just looking to score (alas, also true of way too many adult males also.)

It is extremely hard for anyone in our shame based society to connect sexually in a truly healthy way - so I don't believe it is good or self-Loving for teenagers to become sexual.

Again, I am sorry that it has taken so long, but your question stimulated me into thinking about all the different aspects of the issue - and I am going to be doing a whole web page about it.  So thanks for the inspiration.

Ancient Sacred Spiral Symbol with the tail pointing to the right which signifies "going toward."

Can of Worms

Sexuality - what an issue.  I do not think that there is any single issue that has become so twisted, distorted, and confusing in the human experience as our relationship to our own sexuality.  In getting into writing this column, I can see that I have opened up a whole can of worms.

I am going to return to the issue of teenage sexuality in a moment, but what I need to address first is the context in which my views are expressed.  I realized in reading my answer to the precocious young woman that it would be possible to interpret what I said in terms of right and wrong.  Not just in terms of teenage sexual expression, but also in terms of the goal of having relationships that are balanced on all levels.  I need to bring in a quote from my book here to qualify and clarify the point of view from which I express my views.  This is a rather long quote that I don't believe I have shared anywhere else on my site - and I am going to insert some comments with points I want to make specifically for this column.

"We were taught to look at and do "human" backwards.  We need to make a 180-degree swing in our perspectives.

That includes our perspective on this healing process.  Many of us have pursued healing and Recovery just like we did the rest of our lives - as if it were a destination to be reached where we would find "happily ever after."  We have gone to healers and psychics and therapists in order to learn the "right" way to do life.

Recovery is not a dance of right and wrong, of black and white - it is a dance of integration and balance.  The questions in Recovery are:  Is it working for you?  Is the way you live your life working to meet your needs?  Is the way you are living your life bringing you some happiness? 

When I state that the grief process works, I am not saying that it is the "right" thing to do, or that you are bad or wrong if you are not actively pursuing your emotional healing. 

Maybe it has not been time for you to do your grief work yet.  Maybe you have not had a safe place to do it.  Maybe it is not part of your path in this lifetime.

No one can tell you what your path is!

What I am telling you is that the grief process works to dramatically change the quality of the life experience.  What I am saying is that it is possible to find some Peace and Joy in life.  Unfortunately, in sharing this information I am forced to use language that is polarized - that is black and white.

When I say that you cannot Truly Love others unless you Love yourself - that does not mean that you have to completely Love yourself first before you can start to Love others.  The way the process works is that every time we learn to Love and accept ourselves a little tiny bit more, we also gain the capacity to Love and accept others a little tiny bit more.

I am going to quote myself here from an article in my Healthy Relationship Series that is on my Suite101 page. (There is a link on the bottom of the page to that site if you want to explore that series further.)

A healthy romantic relationship is about two whole, independent people choosing to become partners in the life journey for as long as that works for both of them.  This is, of course, a theoretical concept.  Because of the cultural dysfunction and emotional trauma all of us have experienced due to the human condition, we are never, in this lifetime, going to be a completely whole healthy person with no emotional wounds - and we are never going to meet someone else that has no emotional wounds.
It is not about getting "there" - not about destination.  It is about learning and growing on our journey - it is about making enough progress to have the capacity to enjoy "here" as much of the time as possible.  Balance is a shifting, changing, constantly fluctuating dance that we are learning to relax into - it cannot be forced, it cannot be restricted by some arbitrary and rigid beliefs about right and wrong.  It is about each of us following our own path, our own Truth, in learning to align with the Truth that is Love.
The goal is to be in the process of healing and to choose a partner who is also in the process of healing.   Then we have the opportunity to achieve some True emotional intimacy and to have some companionship on our journey.  The person who can support us in our journey is also going to be the teacher we need to push our buttons so that we can bring to Light the emotional wounds that need to be healed and the subconscious programming that needs to be changed.
Healthy Relationships - Part 4 - Partners in the Journey
This paragraph is a prime example of the problem of using language that is polarized.  The statement above about the goal is not true for all of us.  The goal for all of us it to be in the process of returning home to Love.  It is entirely possible that you could be in a relationship with someone who is not willing or able to do the healing - which does not mean that it is wrong to stay in that relationship.  There could be any number of factors in alignment with the Divine Plan which mandate that you stay in that relationship and do your healing there.  It is very important to stop judging and shaming ourselves for where we have been, and where we are, in order to start seeing our Path with more clarity.

When I say that you cannot start to access intuitive Truth until you clear out your inner channel - I am not saying that you have to complete your healing process before you can start getting messages. You can start getting messages as soon as you are willing to start listening.  The more you heal the clearer the messages become.

When I talk about ways that we use to go unconscious - like workaholism, or exercise, or food, or whatever - I am not saying that you should be ashamed if you are doing some of these things.

We cannot go from unconscious to conscious overnight!  This healing is a long gradual process.  We all still need to go unconscious sometimes.  Recovery is a dance that celebrates progress, not one that achieves perfection.

A significant breakthrough in my personal process came when I was able to recognize, and give myself credit for, the progress that I had made - when I realized that a pint of Haagen-daz was lasting me three days instead of being gone within twenty minutes of when I bought it.

That was a very big breakthrough for me, to be able to give myself credit for the progress instead of judging and shaming myself for not being perfect, for still feeling like I needed the nurturing of ice cream.

We had to learn to go unconscious in order to survive!  Thank God for alcohol or television or romance novels.  Thank God for ice cream!

We need to stop judging ourselves - that means allowing ourselves to do whatever it takes, whatever works.  There are times when we need to go unconscious.  There are times when we need to stuff our feelings in the moment.  There are times when it is not safe to be vulnerable and emotionally honest.

This Recovery process is a gradual transition from using our old tool box to using the new tools.  The old tools - the ways we used to go unconscious so we could survive - are not "bad" or "wrong."  They were life savers - without them we would be either dead or mass murderers, or dead mass murderers.

We adopted the old tools because they were the best choices that were available to us at the time.  We adopted them in response to intuitive impulses that were right on.   Those impulses were "protect myself, nurture myself."  It is the nature of the defense system that is Codependence that the ways we learned to protect and nurture ourselves are self-abusive in the long run.

So we need to stop shaming ourselves for the behaviors that we adopted to protect and nurture ourselves, at the same time that we are transitioning to behaviors that are less self-abusive.

Notice that I say less self-abusive.  We are talking progress, not perfection here.

If you have an image of what completely healthy behavior is, and you will not allow yourself to accept and Love yourself until you get there, then you are setting conditions under which you decide when you will become Lovable.  You are still buying into a concept of conditional love and by extension, the concept of a Higher Power that is conditionally loving.  You are still trying to earn, and become worthy of not only self-Love, but also God's Love.  That small child inside of you is still trying to earn your parents' Love and validation.

That is a natural, normal thing for humans beings on this Codependent planet.  Try not to judge and beat yourself up for it.  Try to observe it and say, "Oh, isn't it sad that I am still doing that?  I think I will try to learn some ways that I can change it."

Ancient Sacred Spiral Symbol with the tail pointing to the right which signifies "going toward."

In opening this can of worms that is the issue of sexuality, I realized that I needed to talk about more than just the topics I had originally thought this page was going to cover.  Some of these topics are very easy to discuss because they are a normal, natural part of the human experience.  Other topics involve behavior that is an aberration, a product of severe wounding - behavior that is in fact shameful because of the harm it does to other beings.  So, I need to include another quote from my book here in order to establish context, in order to drive home the point that we are all ONE - we are, in our True essence, all expressions of the Divine even if the behavior of some individuals is twisted and distorted into something abhorrent.

"This healing is a long gradual process - the goal is progress, not perfection.  What we are learning about is unconditional Love.  Unconditional Love means no judgment, no shame.

[When I use the term "judge," I am talking about making judgments about our own or other people's beings based on behavior.  In other words, I did something bad therefore I am a bad person; I made a mistake therefore I am a mistake.  That is what toxic shame is all about:  feeling that something is wrong with our being, that we are somehow defective because we have human drives, human weaknesses, human imperfections.

There may be behavior in which we have engaged that we feel ashamed of but that does not make us shameful beings   We may need to make judgments about whether our behavior is healthy and appropriate but that does not mean that we have to judge our essential self, our being, because of the behavior.  Our behavior has been dictated by our disease, by our childhood wounds; it does not mean that we are bad or defective as beings.  It means that we are human, it means that we are wounded.

It is important to start setting a boundary between being and behavior.  All humans have equal Divine value as beings - no matter what our behavior.  Our behavior is learned (and/or reactive to physical or physiological conditions).  Behavior, and the attitudes that dictate behavior, are adopted defenses designed to allow us to survive in the Spiritually hostile, emotionally repressive, dysfunctional environments into which we were born.]"

I heard a minister friend the other day mention a story about overhearing some one say to a little boy, "You are a dirty little boy."  It is messages such as this that cause toxic shame.  Instead of saying, "Look how dirty your hands are, you are sure good at being a little boy" - we get the message that something is wrong with our being because of our behavior.  And there is nothing more natural and normal than for little boys to get dirty.

Sexuality is a natural, normal - and very powerful - part of the human experience.

Abnormal Behaviors

Since I have been establishing context - and not trying to build up suspense here or anything to that effect - I will jump right into talking about abnormal behaviors in relationship to sexuality.  The three that I will address here are: rape, pedophilia, and sadomasochism.
Rape is not really about sexuality at all.  It is about power and control.  It is about self-hatred and impotence.  This can, of course, include actual physical impotence, but I am really speaking more of a spiritual impotence - a complete lack of any sense of personal worth or personal power to deal with life.  It is the product of a Spiritual void within - a terrifying feeling of disconnection from humanity coupled with great emotional pain that results in a need to transform the terror and pain into a rage that strikes out against another human being.  It is the same basic emotional dynamic and Spiritual wounding that results in such abhorrent behavior as ethnic cleansing, mindless gang violence, and serial murder.  Feelings of inferiority cause the compulsion to strike out in reaction to the self-hatred and impotence felt within.
Pedophilia is aberrant and abhorrent behavior.  There is nothing natural and normal about an adult being sexually attracted to pre-pubescent children.  This is a case of a tragic cycle of victim becoming perpetrator who victimizes others who often become perpetrators.  Pedophiles, like rapists, are the worst kind of perpetrators - by violating the bodies of other beings by force (any adult who acts out sexually with a child is using force no matter how much they lie to themselves about the child's "willingness") they are inflicting a grievous wound on the other being's heart, mind, and spirit.  They are ultimately committing a gross transgression against their own Self, because we are all connected - we are all ONE.  It is really nasty Karma.
Now, it is natural and normal for children to explore their own bodies and be curious about other children's bodies.  There is a huge difference however, between a child who is naturally curious and a child who has been sexualized prematurely.  In a shame based culture where children are shamed for their natural curiosity, our relationship with our own sexuality starts getting twisted and distorted at a very young age.
Sadomasochism.  The infliction of pain, or need to be physically hurt and humiliated, to achieve sexual gratification is not a natural and normal phenomena.  It is a result of wounding.  It is a twisted, distorted, warped relationship to sexuality that is the result of the sick, dysfunctional societies that have been created by civilizations that have lost connection with, and respect for, nature and natural laws.  It is the product of urban based civilizations where the worth of the individual was diminished and degraded.  It is a very sad commentary on the lack of self worth of individuals who are so wounded that they cannot feel pleasure without pain being involved.

Natural and Normal

I am realizing here that I probably need to define a little more clearly here what I am referring to as behavior that is natural and normal in the human experience.  And in order to help me do that, I am once again going to use a quote from my book.

"I want to make a couple of points of clarification at this time.

One is that I am referring to civilizations around the world, but most of the examples or specifics I am mentioning have to do with Western Civilization and specifically American society.  That is just for my convenience and your identification.  (I am using the word "civilization" here in the Western sense of the term - that is, urban-based and believed to be superior to "less advanced" peoples.)

All civilizations are dysfunctional to varying degrees, as are subcultures within those civilizations.  They just have different flavors of dysfunction, of imbalance.

As an example:  In much of Asia the individual is discounted for the good of the whole - whether that be family or corporation or country.  The individual takes his or her self-definition from the larger system.  That is just as out of balance and dysfunctional as the Western Civilization manifestation of glorifying the individual to the detriment of the whole.  It is just a different variety of dysfunction.

The goal of this dance of Recovery is integration and balance.  That means celebrating being a tree while also glorying in being a part of the forest.   Recovery is a process of becoming conscious of our individual wholeness and our ONENESS with all.

The other point I want to make is that I am saying "civilized" society for a reason.  It is in urban-based industrialized civilization that the optimum dysfunction has been manifested in this world.

Many so-called primitive or aboriginal tribal cultures, such as the Native Americans, had far more integrated and balanced cultures for their place and time than any "civilization."  They were not totally integrated and balanced by any means. They were, however, closer to the rhythms of nature and had respect for nature and natural laws, so were more aligned with universal laws than urban-based civilizations.

In fact, many of the primitive societies were far more functional in terms of the Spiritual, emotional, and mental health of the individual members of the society, and had far more respect for the individual members, than any so-called "civilized" society on this planet.

I believe that historically there has been a direct correlation between the level of advancement - of "progress" - and the level of dysfunction in terms of the individual being's level of fulfillment and happiness.  In other words, the more "advanced" the society became (that is, the farther it removed itself from respect for, and alignment with, natural laws and cycles), the more dysfunctional it became in terms of the individual being's feelings of self-respect and fulfillment."

The phrase "so-called primitive or aboriginal tribal cultures" as opposed to urban based civilization is a very important one in my mind.  I very much believe that "the individual being's feelings of self-respect and fulfillment" was much higher in tribal societies than in urban based societies.  This includes aboriginal people who evolved to becoming urban based civilizations.  It was when the population grew to the point of urbanizing a culture that they started showing more dysfunctional behavior - dysfunctional in terms of lack of validation and respect for individual being's worth and dignity.

This includes aberrations in terms of sexual behavior as well as the manifestation of such practices as human sacrifice.  Aboriginal peoples who became urbanized - such as the Aztecs or the Incas - showed less and less respect for individual human life. But even the many aboriginal peoples around the world that became urbanized and resorted to such practices still showed more respect for, and honor toward, the individuals they sacrificed then more modern civilizations.  The human sacrifice practiced in present civilization isn't surrounded by ritual and prayer, doesn't accord respect and dignity to those who are sacrificed.  Human sacrifice in present day terms is a function of poverty and hopelessness - is reduced to the rituals which accompany crack cocaine and drive by shootings.

"We live in a society where a few have billions while others are starving and homeless.  We live in a society which believes that it is not only possible to own and hoard the resources and the land but one which can rationalize killing the planet we live on.  These are symptoms of imbalance, of reversed thinking."

Ancient Sacred Spiral Symbol with the tail pointing to the right which signifies "going toward."

So, when I refer to natural and normal human behavior in this article, I am talking about my intuitive understanding.  I am sharing my beliefs and opinions based upon what feels like the Truth to me - based upon what resonates as Truth within my being.  I have learned to trust and follow my intuitive Knowing - in the early years of my awakening I needed to do that even when everyone around me was telling me I was crazy.  It is an important part of my personal mission in this lifetime to stand up in public and state my Truth without regard for the consequences.  So, that is what I do, because it is my Path - it is what I need to do for my healing, for my Karmic settlement.

And the way the process of Knowing - remembering - Truth works for me, is that I have studied and read and explored a lot of different sources.  In that study, I learned to be discerning - to pick out the nuggets of Truth from amidst the misinformation.  I have been lead to read whole books that were primarily misinformation in order to find one sentence toward the end of the book that resonated with me.  I took all of the nuggets that I was discovering and connected the dots in order to start seeing the larger picture.

Part of my process for discerning what healthy behavior is, involves looking at some of the tribal cultures that I believe are relatively the healthiest societies that have been known in the history of the planet.  I have found myself doing this, not just in terms of sexuality, but also in terms of parenting.  I believe that the healthiest parenting was manifested in tribal cultures where the whole tribe or clan were all responsible for, and to, each other - where children were accorded respect and dignity as individuals, and not seen primarily as an extension of the parents.  I believe that the concept of the nuclear family as an isolated unit - as it has evolved due to, first the industrial revolution, and later to suburban living which destroyed most remaining vestiges of community connection - is intrinsically dysfunctional, and that the possessive nature of the codependent relationship of unhealthy parents to their children is inherently emotionally traumatic.

This unhealthy relationship between parent and child, when combined with cultural beliefs about sexuality that are way out of balance and twisted (as I say in my book, sex is somehow shameful and shouldn't be talked about but we use sex to sell cars, etc.) is part of the reason that our relationships with our own sexuality has become so distorted and confusing.

Our role models for who we are as emotional beings, as sexual beings, were first of all our shame-based, emotionally dishonest parents - and then the other adults in our lives, including the ones we encountered in movies and books, in magazines and TV programs.  It is no wonder that our relationship with sexuality is so skewed - and our ability to be emotionally and sexually intimate in our relationships is so problematic.

Again the context in which I am talking here is not about right and wrong.  Civilization is not bad or wrong - it is dysfunctional in terms of it's ability to support and nurture individual human dignity and self respect.  It is dysfunctional in terms of promoting connection and Love between humans.

The events of human history have been a result of planetary conditions - and a perfect unfolding of the Divine script.

Ancient Sacred Spiral Symbol with the tail pointing to the right which signifies "going toward."

Homosexuality is Natural and Normal

Homosexuality - sexual and romantic attraction to beings of the same sex, the same gender - is a natural and normal part of the human experience.  There has been a portion of the population, in every society that has existed on this planet, that was homosexual.  In most tribal societies, homosexuals were accorded honored positions of importance in the cultural scheme of tribal life.

The vast majority of individuals who are living a gay lifestyle are simply following the first real guideline of healthy behavior - to thine own Self be True.  A Gay man or Lesbian woman knows very early in life that they are different.  Environment does not produce homosexuality - it is something which is part of a person's DNA, part of their genetic programming, a perfect part of their Spiritual and Karmic path.

And homosexuality is as much related to pedophilia as fish are to bicycles.  Homosexuals are not pedophiles - although some pedophiles may be homosexual, the two are not even closely related.  Homosexuals are not out prowling, looking to recruit "innocent" victims - that is bullshit.  Those are the kind of ignorant, bigoted pronouncements made by small minded people whose beliefs do not support Love and ONENESS - whose beliefs are in fact evil, reversed to the Truth of Love, because they promote separation and fear of differences.

As human beings we have much more in common than we have differences.  This is without even taking our True Spiritual Essence into account.  Simply as human beings, we have much more in common, no matter what differences of race, color, creed, national heritage, language, or sexual orientation we may exhibit on the outside.  As human beings, we share the same basic emotional process - as I talked about in the True Nature of Love article on Twin Souls, Soul Mates, & Kindred Spirits.  The basic emotional dynamics in romantic relationships are the same for heterosexuals and homosexuals - because we are the identical in our emotional process, in what we feel as emotional beings.

The definitive factor for me in determining what is Truth - what is a natural and normal human behavior as opposed to a reaction/an effect of the emotionally repressive, Spiritually hostile, shame-based, Love mutilated environment that has been present on the planet - is: does it support Love and connection between individuals, or does it support separation and fear.  Being True to Self and Loving another human being, no matter what gender they are, is aligned with Love and Truth.  Bigotry and hate are not aligned with Love.

I believe that there is a small percentage - perhaps 10-15% - of the people who are living a Gay lifestyle, who are doing so in reaction to childhood abuse.  This is not bad or wrong of course, it just means - as I have said in other articles - that as long as we are reaction we are giving power to the past and not really seeing ourselves clearly.  The goal of healing is to see ourselves more clearly so that we can see our path more clearly.  That is what will allow us to be True to our Self.

There are also some people who are bisexual.  There are people who are transsexual and transgendered.  I do not know a whole lot about the later two - what I do know is that we are all ONE in the Spirit.  We are all experiencing being human.  We all deserve to be treated with respect and dignity.

In most tribal societies, those who were somewhat different from the majority, were accepted and treated with respect and dignity.  Those who exhibited abnormal behavior that was harmful to others were ostrasicized, and often banished, if their conditions could not be treated by the healers of the society.

There were of course wide variations in customs and cultural mores in different tribes.  Some had traditions that were not at all Loving - which were based on ignorance and superstition.  But in a general sense, I believe that cultures that were more aligned with nature were more often supportive of individual respect and dignity than urban based civilizations have been.

Ancient Sacred Spiral Symbol with the tail pointing to the right which signifies "going toward."

To Be Continued

So, now this article has gone places I didn't expect it to go and gotten quite long without having come close to covering all that I planned to cover.  One more time, what I thought was going to be a single article has turned into more than one.  I have much more to say about teenagers and sexuality, about monogamy, and about some other aspects of sexual expression as they manifest in the present day world.  I also wanted to speculate a bit on what a healthy society's attitude toward sexuality might be in a more perfect world.  These facets of the topic will now have to wait for a second article about sexuality.

The article quoted above from the series of articles on Healthy Relationship Behavior that I wrote for the suite101 page I edit can be found at Inner Child/Codependency Recovery
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Copyright 2000 by Robert Burney.
Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls by Robert Burney is copyright 1995.  Material on Joy2MeU web site (except where otherwise noted) is copyright 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, & 2000 by Robert Burney  Po Box 977 Cambria CA 93428.