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Sex, Death, and Reality: The Basic Building Blocks of the ‘Good Life’

Building with the Basics so that You Can Live Your Real Life, No Matter What

Keeping it Simple

This article is about the most basic building blocks of real life: sex and death.

There are so many complicated theories and ideas floating around online about what you need to be able to do to live your best possible life but ultimately we’re all speaking in riddles about things that don’t need to be that difficult to understand.

When you boil life down to the essentials, people are only really talking about two things: sex and death (if you wanna add a third thing, you can throw ‘God’ in there – either from a religious, metaphysical, or spiritual perspective but really the whole ‘God’ topic is just about giving people a bunch of rules for living with the problems of ‘sex’ and ‘death’).

It’s interesting because ‘sex’ and ‘death’ are two of the most taboo topics out there; they either get swept under the carpet or they end up being hidden behind complicated symbols, interpretations, and ideas that romanticise them so that we don’t have to face the truth about ourselves and what life really is.

The fact is that everything is about sex and death.

These two things are the foundation of human life and human civilisation.

If you wanna live a ‘good’ or ‘real’ life then you need to get your shit together at these two basic levels.

This article is going to tell you why and how so that you can get your life on track to reality.

Definitions

Sex: For the sake of this article, ‘sex’ refers not just to the act of doing stuff with your bits and pieces but also refers to your biology and the capacities and limitations of having a human body that does human stuff.

Death: ‘Death’ in this article refers to the notion that time and attention are limited and that your days here  are limited (because of your body and its expiration date). Embracing this aspect of the human condition allows us to make some initially difficult choices and face some uncomfortable truths that allow us to live the best possible life.

Reality: In all of the things that I write or talk about, ‘reality’ is just what happens when you choose wholeness over fragmentation and therefore align yourself with the experience of being connected to the truth about yourself, the world, and reality instead of hiding behind your fears and doubts by wearing a conceptual mask (‘ego’).

Balancing out the relationship between these three elements will make your life a better one that is actually worth living (or worth living even more if you already have a good one).

SEX #1: Real versus Unreal

The short answer to the question of “What is real and what is unreal?” is that real is about wholeness and therefore connection and unreal is about fragmentation and therefore disconnection.

If you only see yourself as being a ‘body’, which is made out of fragments, then you will always be disconnected and will identify accordingly (the ego is ultimately the illusion of separation over connection). Sex just amplifies what’s already there: ego + ego = 0, real + real = 1.

When it comes to sex, the main difference between real and unreal is rooted in the same thing: if it’s only about two bodies rubbing their genitals together then it might feel good in the short-term but, ultimately, each of the participants are reinforcing their view of themselves as just being fragmented creatures in a fragmented world.

If it’s real, then sex is always about connecting at some level; either with each other or with ourselves. Real is about getting rid of layers of ego and removing its influence over our lives; unreal is about reinforcing ego and the disconnection that comes with it.

This being said we can say there are three main types of sexual activity – one unreal, two real:

Unreal

Shagging: Which is really just done for the sake of short-term physical pleasure with no sense of connection to anything besides the immediate ‘needs’ of the body. This is just masturbating but using somebody else as a prop. You don’t have to be that attracted to people that you shag and could technically shag anybody walking down the high street (not that you’d necessarily want to).

Real

Fucking: Which is still done because of physical pleasure but there is the added element of tension and release. This tension and release comes from the opposing polarities of the people involved( (+) and (-), for the sake of simplicity).

The release of this tension removes layers of the ego (which often causes it in the first place) and makes everybody involved more real, even if only for a short time as tension rebuilds and has to be released again. There has to be at least some level of attraction adding to the tension here – this can be physical, psychological, emotional, etc..

In comparison to shagging, the tension is between people as they become real together (with shagging there may often be unreal tension in ourselves because of the void and we use sexual activity/masturbation as way to escape from it, not confront ourselves and grow real).

Lovemaking: Still involves physical please (duh) but is mainly about connecting to the wholeness of your relationship with somebody that you love (aww). For lovemaking, you already know that you’re both real and that the relationship is about being whole and you’re reminding yourself that neither of you are your egos but the shared experience of being one (excuse me whilst I go throw up a little).

Conclusion: Basically, to maximise the realness of your life you need to move up the ladder from shagging (or wanking if you’re single) to either fucking or making love. You’re welcome.

Sex#2: Instinct, Biology, and Psychology aren’t Going Anywhere

To be satisfied sexually, you need to face certain unavoidable biological truths about life that affect the way we relate to ourselves, the world, and reality.

Basically, this means that you have to accept the ‘rules’ of the game and also to accept that a lot of these rules have been set by the fact that you’re in a fragmented, perishable body that has evolved over millions of years for you to be able to survive, thrive, and reproduce.

Master Your Instincts: I wrote about this in more detail elsewhere on the site, but you have certain bodily instincts that will arise within you and that you have to learn to master if you want to live the realest possible life you can. If you get too horny and become a fiend every time you feel the urge you’ll end up in jail or depleted of your essence and energy. In this area of life, control is freedom as it allows you to stay on the Train and manifest your purpose. Train yourself to master yourself (so you can fuck and make love whilst living a life of purpose – if you have a ‘feminine’ polarity then this may come from having enough control to lose control. See below).

Look Good: If you don’t look after your body then nobody will really be attracted to you in the first place (you will still find yourself in situations where you fuck or make love but it will be more difficult). This is just the way it works. Work out. Go for a run. Eat some vegetables a few times a week. Groom yourself. ‘Good looking’ people just look like they’re healthy (even if they’re not). Thanks, nature.

Don’t be Crazy: Everybody is messed up to some extent, that’s what makes us human. The key with relationships is to find somebody who’s messed-up-ness complements your own. There’s a sweet spot though – if you don’t take responsibility for your own mental and emotional health you’re gonna become needy and co-dependent and turn people off.  Thanks, nature.

Offer something more than Sex: If you wanna get sex, you have to offer something more than just sex (unless you’re just shagging). This means you have to be a ‘valuable’ person – nobody likes to talk about it but nobody will wanna bang (or even love) you just for being ‘You’ unless being you is valuable in some way. Stay on the Train, live your purpose, and keep growing real into your potential (that’ll stop you being needy too). Thanks, nature.

Conclusion: If you don’t understand the rules of the game, you’re not gonna be able to play the game properly. Sex is fuelled by a series of rules that come ultimately from our biology and its associated psychology. Follow the rules and live a real life; don’t follow the rules and be unsatisfied and confused. You’re welcome.

Sex #3: Polarity

In general, there is no ‘real’ sex (fucking or making love) without sexual polarity. To paraphrase what somebody else said “Relationships add tension, sex releases it” – ultimately, everything in our lives of any ‘meaning’ can be seen as being about these cycles of tension and release (such as the anticipation of chasing a goal and achieving it, working out and then recovering, wondering if your football team is gonna score a goal, etc. – tension and release is everywhere. I’ll write about it in more detail soon).

Relationships are no different and to be real about them, you need to understand the way that this tension and release operates and how it is fuelled by polarity.

Many philosophies and religions have recognised the interplay of ‘masculine’ and ‘feminine’ energies and how they play a role in human relationships (and as an essential part of reality itself). Perhaps the most famous example of this is Yin and Yang, where Yin represents the ‘feminine’ and Yang the ‘masculine’.

Obviously, because we’ve all gone mad, words like ‘masculine’ and ‘feminine’ are loaded with all kinds of meaning and tension themselves these days, but, for the sake of simplicity, all it really means is that you’re either moving forward with purpose and focus as you make the world react to you, or you’re submitting to the world and reacting to it. The ‘masculine’ penetrates the world (mentally and physically) and the ‘feminine’ is penetrated by it (mentally and physically).

Generally, for a relationship to maintain the cycles of tension and release that keep everybody growing real and keep things interesting (to say the least), we need at least one person to go into the ‘masculine’ role and another to go into the ‘feminine’.  This is because these two ‘energies’ are in a kind of dance with each other and need to be balanced out so the cycle of tension and release can start all over again (generally a biological male will be masculine and a biological female feminine but that isn’t always the case).

You need both of these things in a real relationship to have the ebb and flow or tension and release that allows you to grow real. A relationship with out polarity ultimately becomes static because there is no tension and everybody involved is stuck in an unreal state of 50:50 which can only exist in a vacuum or bubble and is therefore unreal because it’s rooted in concept, not reality.

Death #1: Flux vs. Stasis

I write about death a lot, mainly because I believe we all need something to look forward to, but also because reminding ourselves that we’re gonna die one day unlocks life and allows us to live it properly and for what it actually is.

Accepting death is a shortcut to overriding your biological wiring and social programming and cracking open the ego so you can step back from it and get away from the illusion of stasis.

What the hell does that mean? It means that if you don’t embrace death, you buy into the illusion that things will stay the same forever and that your self-image or personality (the cage that you’ve locked yourself in) will keep its hold over you.

When you accept that death is coming and there’s nothing you can do about it (and never will be able to, despite what the futurologists neurotically tell us all), you have to make peace with two things:

  1. Everything is changing and that includes ‘you’: this allows you to step back from your self-image and make sure you have one that serves you instead.
  2. Your time here is limited so you might as well make the most of it: this means that you accept life on its own terms and work with it, not against it (hence the ‘sex’ stuff above).

The truth is that reality itself is a whole but your fragmented relationship with it is constantly changing. The more you ‘cling’ to the ideas or images about yourself, the world, and reality that are unreal, the more friction you will put between yourself and reality and this will eventually lead to frustration and misery.

Accepting death means that you can accept change and start working to change these false ideas about things so that you can stand a better chance of living a positive, purpose filled life whilst you’re still around.

Death #2: Time and Attention (Opportunity Cost)

Everything is changing, you’re gonna be dead one day. Okay, great.

Not only does this mean that you can free yourself from the limitations of your personality/self-image (as written above) but it also means that your time here on planet earth is limited (as ‘you’ anyway – technically, you’ll be around as atoms or whatever).

The average human being  lives for 79 years – when you break it down that’s 28835 days of life or 692040 hours. At time of reading this, you’ve probably already used up a whole bunch of those days and hours and even this very second the clock keeps on ticking.

Ultimately, your life is a product of the way that you choose to use your time and attention – the two most valuable assets you have.

Living the ‘good’ life and ensuring that you are as real as possible with your time here means that you understand what you will dedicate your time and attention to and that you stay on the Train and do this as much as possible.

Quite simply, to make the most of your life, you have to make the most of your time and attention.

Literally everything has an opportunity cost because you can’t be in two places at once (though you can design things to work for you whilst you’re working on something else – if you’re reading this, for example, I’m not physically with you sharing my ideas so the time I spent writing this has exponential value each time somebody new reads it).

Accepting that you will die one day is the ultimate motivation to sort your life out and stay on your purpose as you grow real.

So many of us waste our entire lives on unreal pursuits and unreal relationships that are fuelled by unreality and drama, purely because we don’t have the balls to face facts and realise that our time here is limited.

Find something you love to do and dedicate your time attention to it – get on the Train and design a purpose for yourself that allows you to grow more real and to make the world more real at the same time.

Find people that you love and dedicate your time and attention to them – realise that they too are going to die; don’t waste your time with them on meaningless ego bullshit. Don’t ask them to be something that they aren’t. That girl/boy you love is fading away with the passing of time – make the most of it by being real.

Live your life by seeing life for what it is and having real relationships with yourself and other people that are ephemeral beings just like you.

If something is unreal, then either figure out how to make it real or move on. Life is too short.

If you’re bored, then find your purpose.

Stop distracting yourself with meaningless activities or relationships because you don’t have a purpose and you aren’t growing real.

Your time and attention will take you where you want to go if you give them a direction to move in; don’t waste your life and the time you spend with the people you care about by letting the ego distract you from your real life and real relationships.

Ask yourself: Am I being real right now?

If you’re not then you’re giving your time and attention to things that don’t deserve it (unreality). Life is a process and if you choose unreality day after day then you’re gonna have an unreal life; start choosing reality – it’s the only thing that is worth anything.

Life’s too short to give attention to anything besides your real life itself.

Death #3: Short-Term (Hedonism) vs. Long-Term (Realness)

If we’re all gonna die one day and there’s nothing we can do about it then surely we can just throw caution to the wind as the world burns around us (literally if we believe the collapse is coming)?

Kind of.

Living in the short-term for pleasure is fun in the short-term. In the long-term, what goes up must come down and because of the cycles of tension and release we mentioned earlier everything balances back out again.

Hedonism is fun (trust me, I’ve been there) but usually it’s only fun because we’re running away from the void inside of ourselves and we get a short-term release from the emptiness inside us.

Do you wanna die unreal or do you wanna die knowing that you’re as real as you can be?

Living real is a paradox because it means that we accept that we might die tomorrow (the bus is coming) but we have to keep growing, learning, and feeling like we might live forever. Real life is a journey and it’s about choosing to be real as much as possible.

Hedonism is good in moderation (imo) because sometimes living for the long-term takes too much self-control and we have to let go again in order to bring some reality back into the equation. This is because self-control often means enforcing control structures like habits or routines on our lives and if we’re not careful we can start to identify with these and forget who we are in our experience of ourselves.

Living real is about knowing your time is limited, setting the sights of your attention on a vision for yourself, and then moving forward with it as much as possible. To avoid burn-out, maybe we’ll go a little crazy once in a while and ‘reset’ ourselves but then we get back on the Train and move forward again.

People often talking about being present and living for the moment and that’s important for being real but what we often forget is that the present is the seed of our potential and we’re either working with the present to manifest it or we’re not.

Knowing that you’re gonna die one day doesn’t mean that you panic and live a life of meaningless distraction; it means that you seize the day with your balls and make the most of yourself and your life whilst you’re here.

Don’t let fear stop you from showing up in the world.

Bringing it All Together: Reality

The main point of this article is that sex and death are fundamental to our lives and that neither of them are going anywhere. We can hide behind fancy theories or ideas about what we want life to be but ultimately things work in a certain way and we either work with it and get the results we want or we act like the truth isn’t the truth and spend our lives in friction, frustration, and then misery.

Human beings can live in one of three worlds; the World of Necessity which is the purely physical or biological world of ‘matter’, the World of Symbols which is the purely symbolic world of ideas that exists in our heads, or the World of Relationships which is what happens when we combine the two in the most real way possible.

If you wanna live a real live then you have to make sure that your understanding of sex and death is as closely aligned with reality as it can be.

Reality #1: Nature / World of Necessity

Realness can only come to you when you have MASTERY and ACCEPTANCE of your own human nature. This means embracing the truth that you are an ephemeral creature with certain needs and that your time here on earth is limited.

Only once you have accepted this foundation of your own nature can you start to build something upon it that is aligned with your higher values and purpose.

We are all human. We all have emotions and animal instincts (unless we have ideas holding us back).

We’re all imperfect.

We’re all strong in some ways and weak in others.

We can all grow.

Knowing your nature is about working with the inevitable and mastering it to the greatest of your ability.

Sex works in a certain way. Life works in a certain way. Accept these things and build with them.

Reality #2: Concepts vs Reality / World of Symbols

We can either make sense of reality through the experience of growing real in reality or through the symbols in our head and the interpretations of reality that they provide.

Making sense of ourselves, the world, and reality conceptually is essential to learning and making sense of things but the problem is when we start to identify we concepts and forget that they are just a tool.

Concepts are just signposts to reality; never reality itself. Some point more closely towards it than others but no concept is ever fully real because they are always fragments and reality is always whole.

Both sex and death are about experiences and about living to be as whole as you possibly can be. If you find yourself stuck in the World of Symbols (i.e. you’re living for your ideas about sex and death instead of just living and becoming whole through these things) then you’ll never experience these things in the most real/whole way that you can do.

Being real is about being spontaneous and being present with the purpose you’ve chosen for yourself and the people that you love.

It doesn’t mean that you do whatever you want but that you are able to get out of your head from time to time (and the concepts that fuel it) and that you meet yourself and other people where you’re both at; you find a higher, real level together and build with it as you truly connect to what is real in each other.

If we live conceptually and in the World of Symbols we live in the past because our ideas and understanding always come from where we’ve already been (or, even worse, where we think we’ve already been). If we live real, we understand the past but we also allow the present to carry us into the future on the realest possible terms. It’s a subtle distinction but it will change your life.

Concepts are a tool; don’t let them become your master.

Reality #3: Wholeness vs. Fragmentation / World of Relationships

When you merge the World of Necessity (Nature) with the World of Symbols you can enter the World of Relationships – this basically means that you ensure the symbols in your head point as closely to reality as possible but that you aren’t caught up in the illusions of separation and stasis that come from buying into the ego.

In short, this means that you are constantly making an effort to choose wholeness over fragmentation at the levels of yourself, the world, and reality:

Yourself: Choosing wholeness in yourself means that you learn to put your ego in the back seat and take control of your own life by living from the inside out instead of the outside in. When it comes to sex and death this means that you understand your nature and work with it and that you live your life to keep growing real/whole instead of clinging to the fragments that keep you caged within a conceptual personality.

The World: Choosing wholeness in the world means that you live for relationships instead of seeing things as being separated. This means that at the level of ‘sex’, you’re growing through tension and release instead of just reinforcing fragmented bodies and the egos that are attached to them. In terms of ‘death’, it means that you use your life to extend the depth of your relationships with the people that you love and the people that share the world with you (by choosing a purpose that makes the world more real and dedicating your life to it).

Reality: Choosing wholeness with reality means that you don’t avoid it. You are a part of reality and being real means that you embrace your connection to  everything else that is real (even if just being involved in the process of growing real). In short, being real about reality means that you accept what can’t be changed and keep growing in the best way that you can, ensuring that this growth is a process and that even sex and death play a role in it.

You’re either moving towards wholeness or you’re caught up in the illusion of fragmentation. What you choose to give your time and attention to will tell you which.

Conclusion: Keeping it Real

Sex and death are the essential building blocks of a real life (there is no life without either of these things). Sweeping them under the carpet will lead to a life without purpose and days spent in friction, frustration, and misery.  Embracing them in a real way will allow you to live a real life and get out of your head/ego – it might not always be easy but it will take you where you need to be: reality.


Check out Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realness for more on this topic.

To work with me and get real about sex, death, or anything else get in touch about my Coaching.

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Oli Anderson is a fully-qualified coach working to help people close the gap between idea and reality so that they can live purposeful lives that make them feel truly alive. He is the author of Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realness.

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