by Rob Sidon

Mantak Chia is perhaps the world’s most widely known Taoist proponent and is credited for having disseminated much of its philosophy and practices in the West. Although of Chinese descent, Mantak Chia was bom in Bangkok,Thai/and, in 1944. His grandmother had opened the first Southern Baptist Church in Thailand, and he was raised to be a Biblical scholar. But as a young man, he met a Taoist Master named One Cloud Hermit, who demonstrated extraordinary powers and fully initiated Mantak into the ancient and — for centuries — secretly guarded practices.

Years later, as a married householder, Mantak Chia studied Western anatomy and medical science in Germany while managing an offset printing business. In 1979 he opened the Universal Too Center in New York, which has taught tens of thousands of students (including over 1,500 certified instructors) throughout the world; and in 2000 he opened the Universal Too Garden near Chiang /Hai, Thai/and, which now serves as his principal training center and publishing headquarters.

Mantak Chia has authored 22 books, including the best-sellers The Taoist Secrets of Love: Cultivating Male Sexual Energy (with MichaelWinn), The Multi-Orgasmic Male and The Multi-Orgasmic Couple (both with Douglas Abrams).
I was granted the privilege of an extended phone interview for Common Ground’s “Men” issue.

CG: We are delighted to speak with you. You are quoted as saying, “You can either pray 100,000 hours or you can consciously guide the sexual energy up the spine.” That seems like an interesting platform from which to begin a dialogue. What is your meaning?

MC: According to a lot of religious practices, the number-one way of practice is celibacy and to keep concentrating high in order to guide the energy up. Most people don’t understand that point. By praying, by thinking high, thinking of God in heaven, celibacy and no sex — eventually one day the energy will rise up to the head. But people have lost contact with the original purpose. So now they just pray and think of go-Ing to heaven, and that is the whole thing. In theTaoist way,the whole thing is drawing, or guiding, the energy upward — that is the heavenly way. It’s the one that’s going to raise your consciousness, raise your energy up into a high center.

CG: Many of our readers, myself included, have a very limited background in Taoism. Is Taoism a philosophy? A religion?

MC: It’s both of them. In the beginning, according toTaoist history that goes back to the time when everybody was living in nature and in caves, they discovered the Universal Force, or whatwe call the Wu Chi, the Nothingness, the Original Force. So in those times, the ChineseTaoists started connecting with nature and feeling the forces of nature. The religion was only set up when there were many people gathering together, and they wanted something to share and practice together. Eventually, the religious leaders wanted to control the people’s minds, and that religion became a religious ritual. So in Taoism there are ten different branches of religious practice.
But there is also another kind we call the non-religious, just-practice Taoists. Most of them do not belong to any group. Most of them are in the mountains, do their practice, and come down to teach and help people. They do not have any religious contact. Usually these people learn from many systems — even systems such as Hinduism, Buddhism, everything.They combine all the things that are effective, and go to the mountains and practice them.They take out what is not necessary, including all the indications of religious contact. I come from this tradition because my master — after practicing for thirty years in the temples as well as in many other systems — finally decided to go to the moun-tain and practice things in this way. He was practicing and searching for all the masters in the mountains. Finally, he met my grand master, and he learned the whole system that he passed on to me.
In theTaoism of my tradition, the origin goes back to the Wu Chi, the Supreme Natural Power in the universe. It means “nothingness.”
Now, in the religious Tao, they use LaoTzu — the one who wrote the Tao Te Ching and is considered the leader. And, for some of the religious Taoists, they regard the Three Pure Ones — actually, three big stars in the universe — as the religious leaders; but there are many, many gods in the universe, all of whom are named after stars and constellations.

CG: You are apparently revered by many throughout the world for being the one to declassify the secrets of the Tao, which had for millennia been guarded by the emperors of China. How did this fate befall you? Has there been any backlash as a result of your opening up this information?

MC: Yes, I have had some of that. Some people come from a background of what they call their Tao lineage. They have come out from China and started teaching in the West, and they attacked me by saying that I have no lineage and no religion from a Tao Master — or any of the things they do to any person. I answered them that I don’t care.! just do whatever I can; I just teach people. If the people like it, they come to me — if the people don’t like me, they go. So I said, “I don’t care about whether you have a big hat and a big robe on you or a scepter in your hand — or if you come from however many generations of the lineage of theTao master. I just told them that I am not a Master: I just say what ever I have to people. If it is useful to people and if people like me, they support me.That’s all. It’s just like anything — a baker, or a person from a very poor family can be a president of America. Like President Clinton — he had no father to bring him up. He just made himself, and he became the President.What’s wrong with that?

CG: In many religious and mystical traditions, observances of celibacy are considered a byway towards the attainment of God, or God-Realization. What would you say to sincere spiritual seekers who might argue that putting so much emphasis on sexual energy is a detour, a “trap” of sorts?

MC: This is a very good question. Celibacy — no sex — and theTao sexual practices: are they the same or not? In theTao practice we conserve energy and transform it up to a higher level by not losing the sexual energy. Now, celibacy
— or pray and no sex —- is the same practice as what we’ve been doing. But weTaoists discovered it’s not just celibacy. If you want to have sex, you can; if you want to have children, you can; if you want to have celi_bacy, you can. Whatever you do, learn how to transform your energy.

So, the Tao sexual practice is that if you want to have sex, or make love, then learn to control, conserve and transform your sexual love-energy, because love-energy is the best energy. Love and sex-energy is the most important energy in our cells. Without these two energies, the cells will not split and divide properly. Every day we need love, and every day we need sex.

But when sex and love come together, a very special condition arises. Scientists have discovered that when people are feeling love, the frequency in the cells is about 8 Hz (Hertz) — and when you feel orgasm, it’s also 8 HzThis frequency is the frequency that will make the cells start to divide and split properly to form new cells.When the cells divide to form the next cell (two cells become three cells), we call this the original split. We are born from sex, and the first sex cells, male and female, receive the love and orgasm energy into the cells.Then when they split, they split the same energy out. That’s why love and sex are so important. Without learning how to conserve and multiply the sexual energy, we have no way to do the higher level of prac-tice.That’s why the celibacy-with-no-sex practices and the sexual practice in the Tao are really the same.

CG: Your recent book titles, The Multi-Orgasmic Man and The Multi-Orgasmic Couple, are rather appetizing in their promise. Can you describe the premise of the Multi-Orgasm, particularly for a man? Is this really in the grasp of, well … a basic guy, someone like me for example?

MC: The whole thing is this: the orgasmic feeling, and bliss or ecstasy —-they are the same. Only the names are different. When people are religious,they have no sex, they pray to God.f’And if they successfully pray to God and are channeling the sexual energy up, they feel the blissfulness, or what we call the orgasm. Some people say that it is different when we have sex and we have the orgasmic feeling of bliss. But in theTao-ist practice, when you boil it down, it is the same thing. When both people are making love, you feel love and orgasm come together, and you channel this orgasm upward, rather than letting the orgasm go down, or outward. It’s better not to let the love and orgasm energy go down and out of the body.Then we lose that orgasm, we lose that blissfulness.

Now,orgasm and ejaculation are two different things. If you learn how to control and learn how to make love longer, you feel the orgasm. You learn how to contract the perineum/anus and draw this orgasmic energy upward into the brain. Then you start to have cell orgasm, brain orgasm and organs orgasm. This orgasmic energy is the most important energy in our cells and organs because it rebuilds them. It creates new cells and heals them.That’s why the orgasm is important.

If you ejaculate very quickly, there is nothing to multiply — the orgasm doesn’t exist, and the loving energy doesn’t multiply at all. So that’s why the whole purpose is to teach people how to prolong sexual love longer and learn how to draw the orgasm energy upward. Then you feel the orgasm longer, and you feel the orgasm many times together.

CG: But it seems that the forces of biology are ferociously stacked against us. As you know, the male ejaculation has approximately 200 million frenzied sperm cells programmed to explode outwards, in the direction of the ovum, and if you add emotion or passion to the equation, well …

MC: You know, there is always the traditional way of thinking that you have to do that. You have “quickie” sex and the Western way of doing that, and the Western doctors say that you must have ejaculation. Otherwise, they say, it’s not healthy for the prostate gland, and you’ll get trouble — this and that. But this whole thing is the wrong perspective and the wrong practice.

First you have to learn how to contract the perineum and contract the prostate gland, practicing what we call the “power lock” and the orgasmic upward draw. So, you learn how to contract your love muscle. You can learn how to control the prostate gland and control ejaculation. You can actually reverse the ejaculation backward and stop it there.