Commentary: The Use of Sex
A most remarkable example of the use of sex for the benefit of others is provided by Tsogyel when she initiates the rapists who successively abuse her. Much wisdom can be extracted from the song she sings to them.
In the first place, she shows what great power the Dakini possesses over them, and in their dependence upon her how their need can be used for their own good. The desire that arises upon apprehending an attractive woman in the visual field can transform a man into a god if his desire is penetrated by insight into emptiness; divine confidence creates a divine environment populated by gods and goddesses. The woman, or rather, the Dakini, transforms the man who lusts after her into her Guru, the man of her dreams. (Verse 1)
In this context, as in many other passages in The Life, mahamudra has a technical meaning distinct from its usage in the Kahgyupa School where it denominates the goal of practice synonimous with Buddhahood and virtually equivalent to Dzogchen. Here mahamudra indicates the totality of the unitary field of reality in its female aspect. (Verse 2)
It is the Dakini's nature of complete receptivity, empty space, that assuages male aggression; and it is the female organ's 'empty space' that is receptive to the symbol of his aggression. The mandala is completed as the Yidam deity takes up residence in his palace; and joy and pleasure, serenity and peace, are the hallmarks of the Guru's experience of mahamudra after the Mystic Initiation. (Verse 3)
Through 'involuntary exertion' ('no-action') desire reaches its climax,
and it is the moment of climax that pure pleasure is understood as Emptiness; insight into
Emptiness is achieved in the union of the male and female aspects of the mind and of being
itself. The experience of Emptiness is a function of the unitary field of reality, which
in this case is a result of sexual consummation.
Even the uninitiated can gain intimation of pure gnostic awareness in the
post-coitus hiatus, when our 'mystic partner' and all external phenomena seem to float in
space, and sound has a clarity and timbre unrecognised in ordinary perception. The samaya
of the Fourth Initiation is to sustain this experience of 'natural purity' in the world of
appearences' and the samaya of zap-lam is to sustain recognition of the Emptiness in the
desire that has been transformed into Awareness by the intensity of pure pleasure. Thus
whatever arises in the fields of perception is cognised as primal space, and desire itself
is the path so long as it is recognised as Emptiness: this is Maha Ati, Dzogchen, the
starting point, the path and the goal.
(Sky Dancer pp. 250-51, Commentary, The Path of the Inner Tantra.)