סווינגרס בספרים SEXUAL HEALTH AND EROTIC FREEDOM

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SEXUAL HEALTH AND EROTIC FREEDOM

What professionals are saying “It is rare for a renowned sexologist to speak honestly as a sexual being.
Dr. Barnaby Barratt has summoned the courage to tell us -- brilliantly -- not only about sex per se but about his own sexual journey because he has a mission: He wants to liberate us intellectually, emotionally, spiritually and even politically by restoring our birthright -- the right to embodied sexual pleasure.
This is the most stunningly provocative, subversive and touching book I have read in a long time
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Authors: Dwyer, S. Margretta dwyer001@umn.edu
Source: Contemporary Sexuality; May2006, Vol. 40 Issue 5, p7-7, 1/2p
Title: Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom.
Authors: Dwyer, S. Margretta dwyer001@umn.edu
Source: Contemporary Sexuality; May2006, Vol. 40 Issue 5, p7-7, 1/2p
Document Type: Book Review
Subject Terms: *BOOKS -- Reviews
Reviews & Products: SEXUAL Health & Erotic Freedom (Book)
People: BARRATT, Barnaby B.
Abstract: The article reviews the book "Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom," by Barnaby B. Barratt.
ISSN: 1094-5725
Accession Number: 20836905

Dr. Barnaby B. Barratt's latest book:
Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom


למאמר על הספר            PDF     WORD 


Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom

What professionals are saying

“It is rare for a renowned sexologist to speak honestly as a sexual being. Dr. Barnaby Barratt has summoned the courage to tell us -- brilliantly -- not only about sex per se but about his own sexual journey because he has a mission: He wants to liberate us intellectually, emotionally, spiritually and even politically by restoring our birthright -- the right to embodied sexual pleasure. This is the most stunningly provocative, subversive and touching book I have read in a long time. It is compulsory reading for anyone who longs to feel more richly alive in his/her own skin!”

Peggy J. Kleinplatz, Ph.D.
School of Psychology, University of Ottawa
Editor of New Directions in Sex Therapy


“A brave and important book! Everyone who plans to be sexually active should read it!”

Candida Royalle
Erotic Film Director
Author of
How to Tell a Naked Man What To Do



“Dr. Barratt has another winner! Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom is an explosive book that cuts to the core of the divisiveness that is tearing at the fabric of contemporary American religious institutions, and of our culture in general. It is incisive, insightful, and helpful in its vision of health, spirituality, and erotic liberation.”

William R. Stayton, ThD, PhD
Past President, American Association of Sexuality
Educators, Counselors, and Therapists


“Dr. Barratt has written a provocative and courageous exposé, laying bare the societal forces that inhibit our sexuality and crush our capacity for unbridled joy. Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom will stimulate, challenge, and inspire readers to examine long held assumptions about intimate pleasure in ways that may seem foreign -- even shocking to some -- yet are inescapably enlightening. Best of all, Dr. Barratt opens doors to help readers reach a depth of erotic connection that may have seemed barely imaginable before.”

Joy Davidson, PhD
Certified Sex Therapist and Author of Fearless Sex


“Barnaby Barratt offers us a strong manifesto for sexual liberation. If we are indeed in a culture war where sex and exotic desire are primary targets, Dr. Barratt issues a clarion call for honesty and integrity in our sexual discourse. SEXUAL HEALTH AND EROTIC FREEDOM confronts the sex fascism and shame-based sex paranoia that seem to grip our politics and personal relationships, with a radical, courageous and reasoned case for freely and openly liberating our desires and expressing our true sexual selves.”

Jeffrey Montgomery
Executive Director, Triangle Foundation
Vice President, Woodhull Freedom Foundation

How to order Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom

To order, phone XLibris at 1-888-795-4274 or visit www.Xlibris.com.

This book will also be available at Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Noble, and all major retailers.

Excerpt from the “Introduction” to
Barnaby B. Barratt’s Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom

I believe passionately that humanity needs a more loving world, and that a more loving world can only be achieved if we humans are free to enjoy the pleasures of our bodies. I believe that, at the heart of our natural being, we humans are a living embodiment of the energies of the divine. So a more loving world cannot be achieved if we suppress or repress our natural erotic nature, just as it cannot be achieved by the oppression and persecution of one group by another.

Simply stated, the creation of a more loving world requires sexual health and erotic freedom. We know this because all the evidence in front of us points to the fact that

Human malice arises when our natural erotic exuberance
is coercively constrained, curbed or curtailed.

The health and freedom of our erotic enjoyment in life are inherently connected, and they are the wellspring of our human potential for happiness.

In the name of countless religious and political ideologies, many people try to avoid these fundamental truths – for example, by simply denying them, by deliberating over them, or by qualifying them into oblivion. However, as this book will elaborate, both scientific investigation and spiritual “analysis” point to these conclusions. Indeed, they are self-evident. We know that, when we humans are deprived of the sensual and sexual enjoyment of our bodies, we react with spite, vindictiveness, hostility and anger. In sum, we are malicious, and malice arises precisely from sensual and sexual inhibition.

Lovemaking is humanity’s saving grace,
and most of the ailments from which the human race suffers could be averted
if we allowed ourselves to lovemake more freely.

I know this from over thirty years in which I have been engaged in four kinds of professional experience: as a scholar and university professor, studying psychology, anthropology and philosophy; as a clinician, practicing psychoanalytic healing as well as offering sex therapy; as a sexuality educator, working in many different settings, from lecture halls to neighborhood meetings; and as a tantric facilitator, offering guidance on the sacred path that is delineated by our sexual-spiritual lives. I also know this from my own personal experience – from my own emotional and spiritual journey since childhood.
Life provides humanity with plenty of hardship and adversity. Many of us experience terrifying natural disasters, and we all face the inevitability of disease, decay and death. However, beyond these life experiences of pain and loss, we humans have a remarkable capacity to make life unnecessarily miserable for each other and for ourselves. We exploit, bully and abuse each other. We commit violence and warfare, and we engage in all kinds of prejudicial and hurtful acts against our own human brethren. We institute multiple systems of social domination institutions whereby the many become impoverished, subjugated, malnourished, ill housed, and disempowered, so that the few may become richer, more powerful, and more wasteful. We bargain with weapons of mass destruction and we are, as a race, rapidly destroying the planet we inhabit – committing ecological suicide in our own home. Whatever humanity’s virtues, it is surely true that we humans are distinctive because, unlike any other living species, we are tragically, and uniquely, capable of hatred. We are distinct in our capacity for malice.

However, although we would seem to have a unique potential to be malicious, we humans also have a remarkable potential for love. Unlike other animals, we are able to engage in self-reflection, to consider the meaningfulness or meaninglessness of our lives, to experience a certain freedom of choice over how we think and feel . . . and we are capable of living life in Love.

So why don’t we? Why, when we know what “Love” is, do we so frequently choose to exploit and abuse other humans, to impose our beliefs on others, to destroy the planet, and to make war with each other? What is at the root of our discontent? What lies behind our avarice and our apparent need to dominate others? What activates our judgmentalism and our propensity for hostility and violence?

Obviously, my answer – that human malice arises when our freedom to enjoy the sensuality of life is constrained or curtailed – may be an oversimplification. But the fact that it may be oversimplified must not lead us to avoid its essential truth. Because this is a major truth, a truth that has been systematically avoided through the ages and that is still the best available answer we have to remedy the tragedies of being human.

If we were raised without fear and ignorance of our sensual and sexual selves,
if we were accustomed to the enjoyment of our embodiment,
if we were erotically free,
our capacity for malice would be eradicated.
Fearfulness and frustration in relation to our sensual and sexual selves
produce our capacity for malice,
and the energies of our erotic nature are the spiritual source of our healing.

Somewhere in our imagination, almost all of us hold a vision of life replete with erotic happiness – a life in which our sensual and sexual enjoyment is engaged with freedom, spontaneity and ethicality in a way that is entirely natural. This vision could be realized except for the fact that, as I will explain, our addiction to the forces of anti sexuality keeps us locked in our own imprisonment.

This book offers some suggestions as to why this is so, and how we might set ourselves free. It consists of a set of brief essays – “essayettes” one might say – that are intended as a challenge to the preconceived and received ideas that many of us have about “sex.” I intend to write in a way that is provocative and unsettling, because I believe we live in such a sexually insane culture that our ideas about sexuality need to be reconsidered radically. In a modest way, this small book is intended to help us rethink our vision of humankind’s erotic nature and to realize our spiritual potential for happiness.

I think of these essays as written “from my left hand” – since it is the hand I use to pleasure myself, rather than the hand I use for writing grocery lists, letters to friends, or professional articles. This imagery means three things to me.

First, I am not writing in the style of a professional publication, nor of a conventional autobiography. This book is written for anyone to read and – hopefully – be provoked or stimulated in relation to his or her vision of human sexuality. So it is neither a comprehensive textbook nor a scientific document. Although I know that there is scientific evidence to support the opinions expressed here, the pages are not filled with cumbersome footnotes and references. Instead, this book is intended as an easily readable – and hopefully enjoyable -- statement of advocacy for sexual freedom.

Second, although these essays are largely composed on the basis of my professional and personal experiences and opinions, I hope it will become clear that this book is not an indulgence in religious ideology or political propaganda. Rather, my intention is that you will understand these essays as a coherent effort to free human sexuality from the grip of religion and politics. The intent here is to avoid sermonizing, moralizing, or otherwise engaging in tiresome rhetoric, but nonetheless to make a case for the ethicality of erotic freedom -- simply because, contrary to traditional religious and political “wisdom,” our potential for sensual and sexual pleasure is humanity’s saving grace.

So I think of these essays as running counter to all that is traditionally peddled by church and state. However, my own spiritual practice (which does not involve an affiliation to any particular religion such as Judaism, Christianity, Islam, or Hinduism) is actually integral to the messages presented in these essays – and I will not fail to indicate this when and where it seems helpful.

So if you are a believer in some version of God, I hope these essays will awaken you to the realization that, when “He” or “She” endowed us with an abundance of sexual energies, it was surely God’s intention to empower our spiritual growth and to offer us the most powerful way by which to absolve or eradicate our human egotism – because it is our lovemaking that brings us closest to God and permits us to realize our union with the divine, and it is our egotism that is the malicious aspect of our humanity that keeps us from living life in Love.

And if you are not a believer in God, if you are committed to humanistic thinking and are understandably wary of all notions of “spirituality,” please bear with the notion of spirituality that animates these pages. You will find this notion of spirituality relevant to your atheism and, more importantly, you will discover in these essays a radical vision of our collective potential that is truly humanistic.

So this book will be an anathema to priests and politicians of all sorts. However, for anyone who dares to think and to act beyond the rules and regulations imposed on us by religion and politics, it will present passionately the divine potential of being human.

The third way in which these essays are “left-handed” is that they come not only from my extensive experiences as a professional, but are laced with experiences from my “private” life. The evidence for their arguments is derived from my personal journey as an alive and sexually active human being, as well as from my thirty years of practice as a clinician, educator, and scholar. So this book is a publicly “left-handed” challenge to the ways we traditionally treat our sexuality – a challenge made on the grounds of the totality of my professional and personal experience.

I have read several thousand works on human sexuality – books covering every aspect of the topic in writings that are variously scientific, journalistic, political and religious. And I have become weary – and wary -- of authors, even so-called “experts,” who write in a manner that does not acknowledge openly their own sexual interests and experiences. There is not only a basic dishonesty or hypocrisy in such writings, but also the disguised expression of a fundamental sex-phobia. Why should we listen to any priest, politician, scientist, or so called “sex expert,” who fails to speak freely of his or her own sexual enjoyments?

What credibility has the science of sexuality if it does not include the sexuality of the scientist? What credence should we give to the diatribes of priests and politicians if they speak only to condemn the pleasures of others, and do not candidly admit the pleasures that they themselves enjoy? And what credibility have “sex experts,” if they do not acknowledge freely that they love those activities about which they claim expertise? Those who write about sexual matters, and who hope to influence the opinions of others, must expose their own erotic experiences if they are to be worthy of our respect. Otherwise, we perpetuate the very dishonesty and hypocrisy that constantly traps and strangles our sensual and sexual lives.

In these essays, I intend to be worthy of your respect. So both directly and “between the lines,” this book gives information about my personal sexual experiences. The motive for these disclosures is not – I believe – some excessive inclination toward exhibitionism. Rather, I write about my own sexual life both because it is the ground from which my views about sexuality have developed, and also because not to do so would – in my opinion – constitute a major breach of integrity.

Our social and cultural organizations have, for too long, made our sexuality a battleground for anxiety and conflict. Despite the hoopla of the public media, which often appears to be sexually stimulating, our personal sexuality has always been shrouded in secrecy, outright falsifications and systematic distortions. For me to write about the necessity of erotic freedom for humanity’s health and, at the same time, to maintain some sort of professional facade of non disclosure would be, at the very least, inconsistent with my beliefs about the sanctity of sexual expression. Indeed, it would surely be a perpetuation of our general tendency to treat sexual expression as if it were a matter to be kept veiled out of some sense of shame and guilt.

So whenever and wherever it would seem to be helpful – and without any apology, shame or guilt I will straightforwardly disclose my private life, simply because I believe that

The sooner we can all be open with our sexual selves,
the happier our planet will be.

It is my hope that, in some modest way, Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom will contribute to our liberation, and in this spirit, I offer these essays “from my left hand.”


How to order Sexual Health and Erotic Freedom

To order, phone XLibris at 1-888-795-4274 or visit www.Xlibris.com.

This book will also be available at Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Noble, and all major retailers.



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