5 Things You Need To Know About Ecosexuality
Have you heard someone call themselves “ecosexual”? Even if you know nothing about it, the term may conjure images of people getting down and dirty with nature—but being an ecosexual is so much more.
We chatted with Annie Sprinkle, Ph.D., and Beth Stephens, Ph.D., performance artists, ecosexual experts, and the authors of The Explorer’s Guide to Planet Orgasm to get the scoop on this trend. They describe being ecosexual as this: “you don’t look at the Earth as your mother, you look at it as your lover.” You also experience nature “as sensual, erotic, or sexy.” This could mean anything getting off while writhing around naked in the mud to simply getting joy out of doing it in a hot tub or going on a naked hike. With that said, here are five more things you need to know about ecosexuality. And, hey, you just may walk away with a new discovery about yourself.
Though up to 15,000 people in the world may consider themselves “ecosexual,” according to Sprinkle and Stephens, it’s easy to see that the title could apply to almost anybody. That's because you can be any gender and be heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual (and anything else) and still be ecosexual. You can have a long-term boyfriend, be married, or be happily single. “Anyone can be ecosexual. It’s acknowledging that the world around us is part of our sexual identities and experience,” they say.
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Yes, it’s a sexual identity, but it’s also another way to express that you’re an environmentalist. Think about it: When you love the Earth, you want to foster its health—not exploit its resources—and that means caring for it in environmentally-responsible ways. You and the Earth have a mutual relationship, not one where you take, take, take. Ultimately, says Sprinkle and Stephens, doing so can help lower your stress, stimulate natural endorphins, and cause you to open your heart more, and have compassion and empathy for the things that are different than you are. And that sounds lovely.
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You can absolutely still have sex with your partner. Humans are part of nature. Knowing that we're so intimately connected to the earth can also help you see it as something to cherish. Besides, getting your partner in on the eco-love, can boost your pleasure. It’s also worth it to check out eco-friendly sexy toys and lubes, which can help you reduce the carbon footprint of your sex life. Limiting the chemicals you put into your body can also be beneficial for your health. (Try NaturaLove organic lubricant from the Women's Health Boutique!)
There are so many ways an ecosexual can make love to the Earth. And, there are varying degrees to ecosexuality. It’s not all or nothing—you decide how far to take it. Listen to just a few ways someone can make love to the Earth, according to Sprinkle and Stephens: massage the Earth with your feet, swim naked in a pond, tell the Earth, “I love you. I can’t live without you,” talk dirty to plants, and recycle. You can also have sex on the grass with your partner. Or you can head to a nude beach and sunbathe. (Wear SPF!)
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Sprinkle and Stephens officiate wedding ceremonies, marrying people with the Earth. These are performance art pieces, which take traditional wedding vows and apply them to non-human elements of the Earth (like the sky or sea). “It’s really fun and interesting,” they say. “You take vows to love, honor, and cherish the earth and you acknowledge that you are the earth.” And when you make those vows, they carry over to more practical matters, making you stop and think about where you’re tossing your plastic bottles or what corporations you’re giving money to. The “marriage” forces you to reexamine your relationship with the Earth, and forever treat it well.