Promiscuous Intercourse and Unnatural Use of the Sex-Functions


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A Chapter from The Esoteric Philosophy of Love and Marriage by Dion Fortune. Please keep in mind this book was written just after the First World War.

I read this chapter the other day I it is related with discussions here, so I figured I will post it for everyone to read, for it is directly related with Sexual Magic, a secret that was not allowed to be spoken of in the era the book was written.

This IS the Occult viewpoint. Of course, everyone is free to disagree.

Promiscuous Intercourse and Unnatural Use of the Sex-Functions

Promiscuous sex-relations are not regarded lightly by the occultist, because he well knows their consequences upon the inner planes and the causes they set going in the unseen world.

The true value can only be obtained from the sex-relationship by bringing all the seven bodies of man into union, and this is a task, not merely for a lifetime, but for an evolution. The tender affections, intellectual sympathies, and spiritual ideals must all be mated, and this consummation cannot be achieved save by long years of intimate companionship. The fleeting union can engage no more than the senses, and effectually prevents a deeper union being formed, because in each new relationship we have begin all over again. We never touch the higher planes save by fidelity.

Whenever we touch a soul as intimately as we do in sexual intercourse, a karmic tie is made and a rapports exist for a considerable time thereafter. Therefore it is well to ask ourselves with what conditions we are establishing a rapport when entering into such a union. Will the psychic forces that find entrance into racial consciousness through the channel opened up by a brothel prove beneficial to a soul when admitted to its innermost recesses?

Perhaps such considerations, were they more widely known, would serve to check the actions of those who are uninfluenced by the fact that their sensuality forces upon society a pariah cast which is denied all that makes life of any worth.

Concerning the unnatural forms of sexuality it is not customary to write save in books intended for the medical profession, but it is necessary to refer to them here because they form, together with a knowledge of the power of certain drugs to affect consciousness, part of the stock-in-trade of black occultism. To be drawn by mystical cunning into a web of vile debauchery can scarcely be the object of a student of occultism, and he who seeks initiation into an occult fraternity had better be shrewdly observant, for not all fraternities serve the higher interests of humanity.

The Way of Initiation is not a scientific pursuit but a religion, and only the pure in heart can know God. Any tampering with morality is a danger signal, and the neophyte should avoid any occultist whose life is not above reproach. The Kingdom of Heaven is not to be obtained at the price a man’s or woman’s self-respect, nor can we hope to obtain an initiation that is of value by condoning evil. Unless a lodge is imbued by sufficiently high ideals to make it expel the unclean, keep out of it.

An occultist may deliberately devote himself to evil, or, through ignorance of the forces he is handling, he may get into the hands of evil, and in either case he is a danger to a neophyte. There are not many men in the Western esoteric tradition at the present time who are deliberately evil, not in the English lodge at any rate; but there are a very great many who are appallingly and disgracefully ignorant of that which they claim to teach, and they are just as dangerous, in fact more so, for a wicked man can be bought off or frightened, but there is not means of appeal to a fool is out of his depth.

Wherever drugs or sex are played with there is danger; the true occultist advances to a knowledge of the hidden side of things by spiritual intuition which is obtained by study, discipline, and purity of life.

Sexual perversion, so far as it concerns practical occultism, may be divided into two types – solitary stimulation of the generative organs and mutual stimulation by two people of the same sex.

In the first case, injury is inflicted upon the nervous system because there is an output of energy without any corresponding return through the medium of the etheric double, as described in the previous chapter. In addition to this, the energy thus put forth escapes into space, and is not return to the Divine, as it should be; and if, as is almost always the case, the act is accompanied by phantasy, thought forms are built upon the lower planes of the unseen worlds, and these thought-forms are liable to be ensouled by evil forces, and to becomes active upon their own account, hanging about in the neighbourhood of the place where they were generated and influencing its atmosphere and all persons who come into it, prompting them to sensuality. These thought forms are the incubi and succubi of mediaeval legend.

With regard to sexual stimulation between people of the same sex, this is a well-known way, in conjunction with ritual, of producing occult development. It has been practiced in the mysteries of all races and ages in the periods of their decay, as the records of ethnologist and historians show. Two streams of force of the same type of called forth, and naturally find no channels of return, as the vehicles are both of the same polarity. These forces are therefore available for magical purposes; hence the extensive use of what are commonly called obscene practice as one of the easiest ways of obtaining power. Something of the same lack of scruple is shown when drugs are used to develop clairvoyance. These things can be done, but there is a price to pay, that price being that the person so experimenting shall give himself over unreservedly to evil. If he attempts a divided allegiance, he will develop what psychologists term conflict, and mental breakdown will follow. It is more than tragic that young boys should be foully made us of in black occultism. The public do not realize the significance of certain scandals that keep on cropping up, and therefore they do not take them sufficiently seriously.

This is ONE view from a particular occultist's point of view.

Many people of the period when Fortune was writing were also expounding theories of racism as a core of occultism. Shall we accept that as the one true way? Most believed in the inferiority of women to men. Shall we accept that as unalterable truth as well?

Dion Fortune was quite classist in her attitudes. Shall we accept that as an occult truth?

Things change. People change. Attitudes change. An English book on Kaula Tantra was written around the same time that dealt with things quite differently, from what I understand. My ex had a copy, as he was interested in early 20th century occult orders and the origins of Wicca.

Believe me, there are occultists who do not agree. One friend of mine has decades of experience with sexual magic and wrote a book on it called "Ecstatic Ritual." She insists that same-sex relationships are just as valid in sexual magic as opposite-sex relationships. In fact, when she taught a workshop on Sexual Magic last summer, it was one of the specific questions I asked. She says that the energy is internal, and has nothing to do with one's genitals, but rather with the intention and the direction of the energy by the magician's will.

Another friend, a gay man, taught a workshop on it that I attended last year as well (in a BDSM context), and I'm sure you can guess what his opinion on such things would be. He, also, has been doing sexual magic for many years. He is working on his own book at this time.

Both of these people are individuals that I deeply respect and do not consider evil or perverted. Both of them are powerful magical practitioners that I respect as elders in my community.

I am not arguing that some people believe what Dion Fortune and others have written, or even that it has been useful to them. I am not arguing that for some people, these restrictions may be right. What I argue is that it is the only correct interpretation and method, and that such beliefs are the only right way to proceed.

I've read many of Fortune's books in the last 20 years of my Pagan and magical study. I take her with a grain or three of salt, due to her prejudices and the period in which she was writing. She was quite convinced that Paganism was evil, and her SoL order was very loudly non-Pagan, despite her love of magic. She was wrong about that one. What else might she have been wrong about?
It's a good topic, though, Chela - I'm glad you've posted it.

I'm also glad that you're referencing some of the occult heavyweights to help validate the tradition.

Whilst people may agree or disagree with the theory behind it, it does remain an important belief system and I'm certainly glad to be able to read more about it. :)
It just goes to show the extent to which peoples minds are influenced by their cultural background (just stating the obvious). Whilst there is undoubtedly a lot of truth in the basic mechanics of what Dion Fortune says about sexual contact forming karmic ties, as has already been pointed out by another member, she has allowed the uptight cultural values of early 20th century bourgoise define her view of the overall functioning of 'sexual magic'.

About 1500 years ago in the North East of Scotland, Pictish culture and religion was still in full swing. The Picts were the last remaining matriarchial society in the old world and it is known that sexual promiscuity was the done thing. The Picts would hold ritualistic orgies upon various sacred sites at certain times of the year whereby consenting adults would swing from one partner to the next. Also worth mentioning is that the Picts had a law stating that it was illegal to commit adultery in a private place, but perfectly acceptable to commit adultery in public! To the Picts, it was not promiscuous sexual encounters that were considered harmful but the deceit that could potentially be involved. So what might be constitute depraved behaviour in the 20th century, obviously would not have been considered as such by 5th century Picts.

Taking the link between Karmic ties and sexual contact into consideration, I agree that having various one-night stands and such with girls I barely know would not be beneficial to my general 'spiritual health'. However, I do not believe that this would be the case with the Picts. I think the main reason why the Picts would not be inviting 'worthless pariahs' into their spiritual plane through their polygamous practices is because their culture was structured to accommodate for the practice. And lets face it, Pictish sexual practices and attitudes were undoubtedly very much closer to our 'instinctual' sexual tendencies than the attitudes and practices that Dion Fortune seemed to preach, and therfore Pictish culture would undoubtedly be more spiritually healthy than the uptight middle classes of the 20th century.

As for what Fortune says about using drugs to acheive 'clarevoyance', I would have thought that most people these days with an interest in New Age themes would not have any difficulty with the idea that previous to Christian intervention, hallucinogenic substances were a key ingredient of practically all pagan practices.
Yes, there are many, far more Occultists who disagree with these notions. That school of thought is a million times larger. These are not of the ancient Western Initatic Hermetic tradition though, as it has already been clearly stated by Fortune. This is what I meant.

About racism: I do not know exactly what or of who is being referenced. I do know, however, that there is a deep misunderstanding about the Root Races, specifically the Ayran Root Race.

About drugs: Drugs can be used for good purposes. However, not in any way they are used today. The elementals of these drugs can unveil for us something that was hidden previously. However, the ego can be modified with the use of drugs in a special way that is very dangerous. Drugs can help us see thing in a new way, that is until we form an ego within the use of drugs, then we loose that abililty and now have a specially formed drug ego that sees the world in an even more subjective manner. It removes the ability to superfluously discriminate between right and wrong.
I just read this book (Dion Fortune's Esoteric Philosophy of Love and Marriage) yesterday and found it to be very interesting and accurate. It is certainly consistent with the work of Samael Aun Weor, who naturally praised Dion's work highly (as I do).

What I thought was most interesting, however, in light of the Michael Jackson trial finishing today, was the following passage:

Chela said:
It is more than tragic that young boys should be foully made use of in black occultism. The public do not realize the significance of certain scandals that keep on cropping up, and therefore they do not take them sufficiently seriously.

I wonder if this applies to the Vatican scandal as well. It is interesting that homosexual pedophilia tends to be strongly associated with mischief in general.

For example, Michael Jackson is rather well known to be involved with high ceremonial black magic, as is evidenced by's general involvements and...most specifically (racist!) sacrificing 42 cows to curse Jews and others:

The Jackson family has a lengthy history of bizarre occult activities...In April of 2003, Vanity Fair Magazine revealed that Michael Jackson does indeed believe in the occult and had paid $150,000 dollars to have a death curse put on filmmaker Steven Spielberg and 23 others. As part of the diabolical ceremony, 42 cows were slaughtered and Jackson bathed in the blood. This awful animal sacrifice was immortalized in the singer’s hit song “Blood on the Dance Floor.” His troubles have continued with persistent allegations of ritualistic child molestation for which he is currently standing trial. Sister Latoya bravely broke ranks and revealed that the whole family had been abused by their father but has since gone back to the cabal and currently heads up Latoya Jackson’s Psychic Network.

Sources: <>
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By the way, for anyone interested in the work of Samael Aun Weor, there are lots of websites but you can pick up PDFs and/or discounted at-cost paperbacks at the following website: