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Spiritual whorephobia and "sacred" slut shaming

Updated: Feb 11, 2019



So, it is time for a little political-spiritual rant today! I'm going to chat with you all about whorephobia in the spiritual communities, the ego-trap and the "sacred" slut shaming I've been seeing around the place in a hope to shine some light on the topic and hopefully stop more of this dangerous stigma spreading further.

I actually wrote this before the big tumblr/facebook updates with sex talk being banned, and now with the new rules coming in this topic is as important as ever.

(Whorephobia or whoremisia is the hatred of, oppression of, violence towards, and discrimination against sex workers; and by extension derision or disgust towards activities or attire related to sex work.)

I will also mention that, like pretty much everyone, I once had whorephobia and was judgmental and made jokes about sex workers. This is how most people are raised based on the mainstream view on sex workers. I had to decondition myself, humanise these people in my mind and do the work to make change in myself, and we all should.


So a little brief of what I'll be touching on

- What BS I've been hearing that has been triggering me enough to bother writing this.

- Why you should avoid saying PROSTITUTE and WHORE, especially if you're working in spirituality.

- The war on freelance, empowered sex workers that's going on that you probably don't even know about.

- Why the 'ex lovers energy stays with your for 7 years' claim is total BS, disempowering and sexist AF.

- Why Sex workers are totally epic goddesses (and gods) who deserve not just respect but honoring.

- EGO TRAPS you're probably stuck in if you hate on the adult industry.

- Where we WANT to go in the industry, how you're holding us back and how to actually help make the world a better place (hint- shaming and talking negatively about the industry does the opposite)



When I first got into yoga and spirituality, whorephobia and slutshaming never really came up because most spiritual practices don't really get into sexuality or having an opinion on what people do for work or who they have sex with (besides of course the limbs of yoga talk of celibacy and sexual purity as part of your journey but generally people don't go so much into it), and when I first go into tantra I was learning simple white tantra self-practices for channelling my sexual energy to help me get rid of the excessive horny energy when I was in celibate phases so that I could transmute it into psychic energy and general motivation for other things in my life, which was amazing and really empowered me and helped me a lot! Eventually I had a partner to practice with and I got to experience amazing tantric orgasms with someone else around, and the insane connection you can have with someone... But sadly, the more I have got into this 'scene' (going to workshops, following teachers and watching their videos and reading their posts and talking with people about these topics) the more I keep seeing the same things popping up...

'Our inner prostitute', 'Embodying the whore archetype' 'the shadow feminine= the stripper and the whore' usually followed by a bunch of negative traits and associations that we all definitely don't want to be, and talking about how to become 'better' than that and 'transmute our shadow'.

The shocked and judgmental glances when I say that I work as a stripper, the looks on peoples faces in dance groups when I get that little bit too raunchy... That in combination with all the constant talk about how the 'right way' to love is one where we are only be with 1 person and that having multiple partners or experimenting with alternative kinks is 'living out our shadow', then we have some real obvious Christian-prudism shining through these teachings. I even heard a rant that was going viral recently about how women 'rape themselves' where she kept yelling the word prostitute and literally said women having sex/being sexual for money and resource 'is what gets women raped and killed' . WOAH THERE. And all the comments and shares were lapping up everything she was saying and not even mentioning how absolutely revolting her comments towards actual sex workers (or even anyone who has found some kind of arrangement that works for them) were and how very black and white this viewpoint is. Although it wasn't directly targeted at sex workers in this instance, it is reinforcing the hatred and judgement against them by using them as a negative association and this is very harmful for everyone, not only those working in full service sex work or other parts of the industry. Now, I know a lot of people have probably never personally known a sex worker (that is open about it to them) and probably have not bothered to take the time to research about what it is like to be one, or the struggles we face, so I thought I would shed some light on the topic for those who are ready to receive it.



I have been in the adult industry for 8 years, I have worked around the world and am friends with all kinds of consensual sex workers... strippers, escorts, porn stars, porn producers, cam girls, dominatrix's, tantra workers... you name it. A lot of my favourite humans on this planet work in this industry, so you can see how I am a little sensitive to this issue and hearing people shame those that I love, particularly when a lot of them dedicate their lives to making people happy, educating people, representing minorities and queer people, relieving people of sexual shame, trauma and guilt, empowering all genders sexually... or even just entertaining people while they enjoy feeling pleasure and desire. We ALL have a whole range of obstacles and shit to deal with for working in our field. From just every day awkward situations when a stranger asks what we do for work or the conversation dodging at family Christmas, to more extreme issues like being rejected from entering counties, having our websites and social media removed, having legal situations, child custody issues and not being able to get bank loans with our job.

I have personally, over my time in the industry, been in multiple open relationships, had years of celibacy, and an epic twin flame long term relationship all while working in the adult industry. So clearly there is some level of separation between work and my personal relationship growth with my sexuality and others, and being an sex worker has not stopped me from being able to have the best, most connected and enlightening sex in the world, the best relationship with myself and epic relationships with other people... the problems lie with the view from society as a whole.



So to begin with I'll get a little political here-

'Prostitute' is now considered a derogatory slur in the industry as prostitution is commonly used to dehumanise people in the sex industry. Most importantly prostitution is now used interchangeably with trafficking and is used to describe forced sexual exploitation. Sex work, prostitution and trafficking are now commonly confused. This is dangerous, not just for sex workers, it takes the much needed and very important focus off all true trafficked victims. Sex work is only used for consensual workers in all of the adult industry (including strippers, camgirls, dominatrix's and pornstars sometimes). The wording we use has a big impact and needs to be looked at, so if for example you wouldn't say the 'N' word in your workshop or talk about your inner 'f*gg*t' then you definitely shouldn't be throwing the word prostitute around, and ESPECIALLY if you aren't making an effort to educate yourself about actual sex workers and their struggles. Cut it from your talks and find another metaphor and wording (for example a lot of people are reclaiming the word slut, and I'm all for this if we are using it in a positive way for expressing our inner allure and having fun with our sexuality but not using it as a negative word to further shame women for their sexuality) or have some form of disclaimer that accredits sex workers and makes sure that it is clear that you're not targeting them if you do still feel strongly about using it. You never know who in your group is/was a sex worker and I guarantee they will lose respect for your teachings and feel excluded when they hear you saying those words. I know a lot of people rely on archetypes for their teaching, but it is odd to me that it is considered so normal and ok to use the 'whore' archetype as a shadow/negative framework when it is something so stigmatised and dehumanised, and is an actual job for women in this day and age. What would be more appropriate is talking of the 'Seductress' or if you're talking of manipulation etc then just use 'Manipulator' rather than degrading a whole profession in the process.


There is an international war on sex workers (particularly freelance, female workers) happening as we speak. FOSTA/SESTA and various other similar laws have taken away sex workers independence online and has literally caused the deaths of women around the world who were then forced to work on the streets when they wouldn't usually, and were unable to screen clients safely. People working with anything to do with sexuality, myself and good friends of mine included, are being banned left, right and center from social media without even breaking any rules or showing nudity, just for speaking about sexuality. Overnight our brands, income and businesses can disappear online. With how powerful social media is and how it's used these days, people are easily forgotten when their presence in your feed is gone and you just follow the next account. Livelihoods have been destroyed time and time again, but we are resilient people who are used to working in the shadows of society, of fighting stigma and working to prove our worth and value as people regardless of the industry we chose to work in... We should be valued equally for working in sexuality as any other healer, entertainer or worker. Most of our work is about making people happy, improving lives and we deserve safety and respect like any other human. Every sex worker in all intersectional fields of the adult industry deserve this basic human safety and respect.



I know a lot of you are concerned about mixed up energies from someone having sex a lot, and there are posts online and talk about women being left with energetic imprints of past lovers (or customers in this case) and 'DNA' staying with women for 7 years... This is absolute garbage and really sexist (and absolutely horrific for any woman who has been raped). This all reeks of old fashioned prudish morality with a spiritual, psudo-scientific sprinkle of sexism, and if that is your personal belief and you wish to not engage in sexual activities because of it then that is your choice, but projecting that on people is just adding more shame and guilt to their sexuality and is not helpful at all.



We can clear energy from ourselves easily when we have the tools, and there are a lot of women, as well as men, doing amazing work sharing these rituals and techniques for industry workers and all people to protect themselves energetically and clear themselves after engaging intimately with someone as you would with any other healing or energy work, we are not weak female victims of this projected version of evil, 'creepy' men and we can take care of ourselves. If you care for the energetic health and safety of workers then you should be helping them feel empowered to create their own healing and clearing in themselves. The last thing any of us need is more external judgement and shame for what we do. What we want is support and tools to be the most empowered, happy and safe versions of ourselves. (Any SWs reading this check out @ritualswithlove for an example!)

Personally, in my journey with sexuality I have had times where I was very closed off, shy and ashamed of my sexuality, times where I was open and experimenting to find what I like and don't like, and have come to a point now where I know that I prefer to be picky with who I engage with but I enjoy being sensual with lots of people. I don't think there is a right or wrong way in general, there is only what is right for you at that point in time and I wouldn't walk around claiming that the way I feel about sexuality now is the supreme, right choice. What was right for me at various times was perfect (though sometimes not so sexy and quite unconscious but that taught me a lot), and some of the random encounters I had with strangers in my experimenting phase has absolutely shaped how I enjoy sex now, and were some of the most profound and spiritual experiences of my life, and having 1 partner to go deep with has been amazing in its own accord! But are either the 'right' way? Is there even such thing? We need to stop projecting this onto other people and work to help them be empowered in their choices whether they are wishing to sleep around a lot or to be celibate. It can all be divine when done authentically and with good boundaries.




At it's core, strippers are the modern temple dancers and full service workers are the modern high priestess, we work with the divine erotic energy even if it is in a fairly twisted, modernised, capitalised form of the work at times. That is the same for most industries (even the yoga industry with its consumerist, whitewashed new branding) yet unlike other industries, the workers in the adult industry have their very core as a human judged for participating in it, and it is generally always judged by people who have absolutely no contact with the actual workers themselves and don't actually know how things work behind the scenes and behind the red light glow and plastic heels you witness from the outside. The workers shouldn't be bearing the brunt of everyone's clear frustration with capitalism and consumerism which has eaten away at practically every industry in the world, and we're left working within the framework that has been pre-determined if we want to make a living, since being a human in this modern world requires making money. EVERY INDUSTRY is prone to having some form of abuse, and I'm sure all of us have seen enough scandals with yoga gurus sexually abusing students, tantra sex cults, rapist ayahuasca shamans and various other forms of abuse even in the spiritual scene, so to say that only the adult industry should be shut down and destroyed while all other industries are still considered capable of positive change with empowered voices is downright hypocritical. We need more accountability for abuse in all fields, and the more 'underground' a scene is, the more taboo it is, the easier it is for abusers to get away with it. If the adult industry was considered legitimate, respectful work like any other job then abusers would have a much harder time finding victims to pray on because we would be able to talk about it, get help and stop others from making the same mistakes. This is essentially what a lot of websites helped workers to do, though the very same websites have now been shut down by FOSTA/SESTA, so it has once again gotten harder to hold these people accountable for their actions when it can't be safely and publicly shared.


A lot of the hatred towards sex workers is quite clearly linked to the idea that male sexuality is inherently predatory while females are victims, you can see in mainstream media the difference between how male sex workers are shown compared to women. Like the movie Magic Mike for example, featuring male strippers and showing depth of character and an empowered story, while all female strippers in movies always have this victim story attached to them. This victim dynamic may be true for a very tiny percentage of industry workers, though when it comes to the actual vast majority of female sex workers customers, they are lovely men who are in need of some intimacy and affection and who treat the women well, with the transaction being clear and within their boundaries, with consent from both parties. Yes, we seriously do need to address the small percentage of cases when there is a clear predator/victim dynamic but everyone else should not have their intimacy and erotic experiences denied to them just because of these abusers. As recent history has shown with FOSTA/SESTA, these restrictive measures just ends up assisting these abusers, making it easier for them to continue their destructive and incredibly harmful behaviour.



There is absolutely a conscious sex worker revolution going on behind the scenes, many energy workers and amazing feminist rebels are taking their space in the industry and working to make empowering changes and add more conscious energy back into the work, but without respect and support from EVERYONE then we will always struggle with power imbalances and stigma stopping our work. This is something I struggle with personally and constantly. I have so much desire to bring back the conscious, worship of the divine feminine AND masculine sexuality and sensuality and inject it into the mainstream to help everyone get a taste of the potential we all have within us, to help revolutionise the way we see adult entertainment and create amazing places where people can see experienced and genuine erotic healers, but due to the black and white view of sexuality as wrong and evil, it is extremely hard to start these projects and talk about this stuff without getting banned and blocked left, right and centre. The only way we can truly be empowered to make these changes is if we have backing from people outside of the industry. We NEED your support. It was incredibly upsetting for sex workers all over the world when FOSTA/SESTA was coming through and we all tried to warn people about the damaging implications, yet hardly anyone outside of the industry would even mention it or share an article to raise awareness. They were embarrassed to show support for us, or just didn't care... And now lives have been lost because of it.


People get into the adult industry for various reasons, all of which are worthy of basic human respect. Whether someone feels a powerful, conscious pull from the universe to work with sexuality like a high priestess; to help heal people through sex or sensuality and do so with full autonomy... Or whether someone doesn't have other options and they do it for survival because it is one of the only things they can do to pay their bills, they both equally deserve safety and respect. When you speak negatively about sex workers, YOU add to the stigma which sometimes, tragically, kills them. This collective, dehumanising idea that someone who 'sells their body' (wrong, no one is ever SELLING THEIR BODY, they are selling a skill and service and often emotional labour so please don't ever say that) is 'less than' or shameful and unworthy of respect is what gets us killed, not the job itself. If people respected and valued sex workers as they should, then it would be as safe a job as any. In general, my experience in the industry has been one of safety, I have felt a lot safer and more protected in my workplace than I do 'out there' at normal events. I get groped, harassed and victimised far more at a music concert or a club than I ever do in my workplace, because in general customers in the adult industry know what they want and are happy to create a fair energy exchange for their needs and desires, which is far more consensual, safe and sane than most of the unconscious 'pickup artist' stuff happening around the world.





We often talk about abundance and finding a job that you love so you can have great flow in your life and make a living on your own terms- well for me and many others, working in the adult industry provided this. I was able to work through chronic illness, I can work basically anywhere in the world and make enough money to live a comfortable lifestyle doing something that I love (yes, I do love stripping, although I don't love club hours, rules and alcoholic culture).

Of course the industry could be improved to be more healthy, more conscious, more deep and I am working on helping create that along with many others- but flat out shaming it and judging it and hoping it will go away is not the answer and if you're not participating in helping to create a change then you should step back and avoid talking about things you don't really understand. If you have never done sex work or are not close with someone who does then perhaps it isn't your place to have an opinion on it at all. YOU DON'T NEED AN OPINION ABOUT EVERYTHING and I think this whole idea that we need to is very egocentric and damaging, especially when talking about minorities and groups who are under attack. It's absolutely OK to say 'I don't know any sex workers or much about the industry so I won't comment on it, maybe ask someone who does!'



If you think you're conscious and enlightened yet still judge and shame sex workers just for their job, then you are stuck in an ego trap.


If you think that only tantra workers are OK as they are working 'consciously' and others aren't, then you are in an ego trap.


If you claim to support women having full autonomy over their bodies and lives, but only when they don't use that autonomy to get paid for using their sexuality, well then you're in an ego trap my friend.



And worth mentioning is that I'm seeing the most judgement primarily from privileged white people. I see it from tantra workers and burlesque performers who judge and shame regular industry workers because they think they are 'better than' as well as people who have no business even talking about it in the first place, from men but surprisingly mostly from women.. So much for love and light, one global consciousness and one collective experience.


See, what most people really have a problem with capitalism and materialism, and they like having their sexuality as something that is separate from that... But we live in a capitalistic society and if we're lucky we can choose what interest or passion of ours to pursue as a career, so does it really seem that crazy that people who enjoy sex would decide to work with it? That if they are going to be having sex anyway then they might as well get their rent paid?

As female sexuality is becoming a big industry with the skyrocketing popularity of pole, burlesque and sexy dance classes, a lot of people seem to have no issue in appropriating stripper and sex worker culture while simultaneously berating it (like Nicki Minaj for example). I was really disappointed when I went to a tantric erotic dance class and had the teacher constantly make negative comments about strippers while simultaneously teaching what I do for a living, what I'm damn good at and what I love, and this kind of thing just keeps happening. If you're going to profit off the erotic arts then you should respect the actual industry pros and not speak negatively about them, especially to a group of people who are actively following your teachings and are curious about this energy. This has also been a big deal in the pole world with so many pole dancers talking bad about industry workers while wearing their 'uniform' and engaging in their art form. This is a form of cultural appropriation because strippers and other sex workers are a marginalised and stigmatised people from a full spectrum of cultural, sexual, lifestyle and ethnic backgrounds, where we often have to hide what we do from people in our lives. We get deported from countries, denied bank loans and rental properties, we get disowned by families and have problems with relationships all due to what we do.... It is not easy but we persevere (often because it is all we can do) and when you take things from our work and profit from it while not giving us respect and instead adding to the negative stigma from your privileged place as a non-industry person then that is simply not ok.


Collectively we have worked over the years to bring light to how people should be more mindful of how they speak of and treat marginalised people from various cultures, sexualities and lifestyle choices, so why do people still think it is ok to target sex workers? We are the easy target that most people hate (while still consuming our labour every time they watch porn, have a night out or want to have an erotic experience) yet most people refuse to give us basic respect for our choice of work, and it really hurts me to see that the 'spiritual' community is actively participating in this.

If you actually want to help sex workers and help us create an even more empowered and conscious adult industry then don't exclude us by making unconscious comments about us. If you want to 'raise the vibe' then don't add to stigma and shame- there are so many more productive ways to go about this. A lot of these comments aren't directly AT sex workers but are still hurting us, though you need to be careful when choosing these words to not be inadvertently attacking us and adding to peoples conscious or subconscious whorephobia. Not everyone is on the same path in their conscious evolution and what we need instead of people just flat out shaming sex workers is people who will give us respect and dignity in our job which will help us be treated better, it will stop workers being harassed and killed. So if you feel passionately about 'helping' sex workers then talk to them, get educated about our unique struggles and issues and how we want to be helped. Don't use some spiritual sugarcoating to just reword the same slutshaming, whorephobic rhetoric that everyone else is saying to us.


I want to be able to share about all of myself, authentically, without having to tip-toe around the majority of my work for fear of the looks and judgement I will receive. I want to be able to go into a tantra class and learn empowering techniques for my spiritual journey without the teachers judgment on who I have sex with being thrown into the mix. I want to see my fellow brothers and sisters being proud of the work they do and I want an industry that is safe for us all to work in.

Now is the time to actively listen and not just interject with your opinion if you are not involved in the industry. I am extremely open to hearing opinions and feedback from sex workers and their clients who have experience in this field, but I am tired of the hearing opinions of those who simply don't understand what we do. That is all we hear, all the time, and I appreciate people sharing this article and perhaps shifting some perspectives, but I also know I will likely be bombarded with totally unwelcome opinions as a result of this. So with that I ask you, the reader, to now please sit with what you have read and just really, actively listen.


So in closing. Yes, I CHOOSE to work with conscious sexuality and more in the sensual realm than sexual, I prefer to work with sensuality because that is what I am passionate about and what resonates with me, which is a tremendous privilege, but I do not see myself as better than a regular street worker. That is what is right for them in regards to their reality and their perspective, that is their journey and it is not my place to judge them. I will support anyone who is doing what they can to get by in an ethical, consent based way, regardless of the circumstances that put them there. There is light and dark in all fields and industries in the world, and the adult industry CAN be an empowering, loving and amazing place, it has been for me and I am so grateful for all the amazing sex workers I have met on my journey who have helped me and countless others to grow, expand and love deeper.