How I Became a Prostitute

10718709543_9f1c093004_mI have just been teaching the “Client Interaction Booster Course” here in Germany. One of the participants asked me a question: about how she gets bogged down in little things to do, and feels overwhelmed, and then feels a sense of guilt if she does not get everything done.

I told her that the simplest solution to her problem was to train to become a prostitute.

Then I realized that this might require a little further explanation.

My two sons are both grown and have left home now. Abhi lives in San Francisco, and is preparing to become a naturopathic doctor. Shuba is a ski instructor at Northstar Resort in the Sierra Mountains. For many of the years that they were growing up I shared custody with their mother: so when they lived with me, half the time, I was alone with them. That was a very, very busy period of my life. After dropping them both off at school, I would probably need to go to the grocery store, then home to clean up the kitchen, wash dishes, clean the house, and then maybe actually do my work for a few hours, before driving back to the school to pick them up and bring them home. Then there was homework, and sports, and preparing dinner, and eating dinner, and preparing breakfast for the next day, and bath, and bedtime stories… and finally I would collapse into bed.

Many times it happened that one of my kids would wake up in the middle of the night with some kind of sickness. “Daddy….” I would hear. That is not the kind of moment when you lay in bed to introspect. “Is it really part of my flow to get out of bed right now? What am I being called to do? Am I just taking action based on obligation, or is it really the calling of my heart to respond to this crying? What am I really feeling in this moment?” None of those thoughts even passed through my mind. I would jump up out of bed and go straight to my son’s room. If he had a stomach flu and was vomiting, we would need to find the right homeopathic medicine, and then change the sheets, and get him settled down again. It might be an hour before we both went back to sleep. None of that would stop the fact that I still had to be up at 6:00 in the morning for my other son: to make his breakfast, make sure everything was in his backpack, and drive him to school. This would go on day after day after day after day. There are no days off from parenting.

daily-life-behzad-bagheriBy the time they did grow up and leave home, it had become a habit to do what needs to be done, and not to think about it too much. Now I live the same way: not with small children but with writing (like I am doing now) and traveling and teaching and…and…and… The funny thing is that all those concerns about “Am I doing the right thing?” and “How do I heal the conditioning of my childhood?” and “Is this really following my bliss?” do not actually ever get totally cleared up. They just evaporate and disappear through no longer focusing on them. When it is time to take action, you just bypass the focus on “me” and “my process.” You get taken over by the force that gives us all life. There is no more any “me” deciding anything. The decision is taken for you by a force bigger than your own mind. You get used by that force. You enter into the service of that force.

You learn to become a prostitute in the service of something that uses you, kindly yet mercilessly.

When we first experiment with living in this way, there are periods of time that are “in the flow:” where that force has taken over, you are out of the way, and you just know what to do without thinking. There are also times when the flow is gone, and it’s all about “me” and “my issues” and “my problems” and “working on myself” again. If you are willing to make yourself available: day after day, night after night, as a prostitute to the will of a love beyond your own understanding, you realize that the moments of flow ~ when you are out of control and you do not understand anything at all ~ feel so much more right and natural than the moments when you are trying to figure it all out. Working on yourself and improving yourself: which is part of such a massive industry in the last decades, gets replaced by an inquiring in to how to simply get out of the way.

“How can I become a better me?” gives way to “How can there be less of me? How can I make way for the bigger love?”

Like all things, we have to find a sane balance with all of this. When I was raising my kids for all those years there were times when I made big mistakes. Sometimes I lost my temper, or I blamed them for things they had not done; I was not by any means the perfect dad. If I made a mistake I had to be willing to go back and apologize, to make amends, to really learn, and make sure I did not do it again. That is just part of being a decent human being. But you do not have to make your whole life about self-improvement and introspection. You work on yourself and you look within yourself just enough to bring yourself back in to balance: back in to an alignment where you can be used again, by the force which gives us all life.

So that is the story of how I learned to became a prostitute. Today many of my best friends are prostitutes too. We have all made ourselves available to be used by the same patron: who has no name, no face, no voice, but an unwavering determination for living fully: Barbara Marx Hubbard, John Gray, Isaac Shapiro, Bharat Mitra Lev.

It is not so bad, this life of being a whore. You find yourself in the very best company.


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22 Responses to “How I Became a Prostitute”

  1. Daniel Sieff December 10, 2014 at 3:54 am // Reply

    Thank you for your wonderful post. I usually sleep very soundly but sometimes wake for 10-15 minutes. I saw your email and wanted to reply-promptly- with no chore to attend to. You describe heart centred living- which helps one be in a state of flow. As a man who has made mistakes with the opposite sex and perhaps has not always felt ready to follow his feelings with openness and vulnerability, when opportunity has presented itself. Sensitivity is a good thing if paradoxically one is ready and willing to wear the armour of vulnerability. Working on yourself and time can be great healers to allow a person to be vulnerable again and thus live with open heart. Thank you for your post.


  2. Shayla Wright December 10, 2014 at 4:00 am // Reply

    Arjuna, thank you. I am so touched and inspired by this. I think it’s the best thing you have ever written.It explains ‘surrender’ in a creative and visceral way.Thank you for finding the power to articulate this. I am very grateful.with love Shayla


  3. Morgine December 10, 2014 at 6:02 am // Reply

    Arjuna, For once I am greatly surprised at your choice of words. Perhaps it was only to create a provocative title to your article, however, it certainly does not ring true for me.I researched the word in dictionaries and could not find any definition I would enjoy associating myself with. For instance: �willingly uses his or her talent or ability in a base and unworthy way, usually for money.� Synonyms were ever worse: betrayer, slut, deceiver, desecrate, violate and more.I experience an Energy, or Source, an unconditionally loving Life Force of some kind, which created and alivens all of creation. An energy which grows the plants and animals, creates the seasons, provides eternal life, breathes me and every particle of creation. Its beauty and depth and infinite love is beyond anything I can describe.I am like a flute through which Its breath flows and plays music. I can surrender into this energy, allow it to take over and flow with it, as all of nature does, or I can try and control which hole is open and closed and struggle to do things my own way. I have this choice of struggle or ease. I can be happy, peaceful and trusting regardless of what is going on, or judging things in a dualistic manner into good and bad and right and wrong, etc.. And yes, I am not always playing beautiful music! Sometimes there are only sad or angry notes and I know I need to relax back into the arms of life, always holding me and guiding me, when I get out of the way of trying to handle things all by myself!When I surrender into this tender, unending, infinite, Divine Love, there is nothing base about it. I feel cared for, respected, sustained, praised, cherished, the opposite of �prostitute� I read under antonyms for this word. I am never a whore to this energy or Life Force, I am a lover instead. The more intimate I become with It, the more I allow my Uniqueness to shine through blessing all of creation with my own light and love, playing the part only I can play, and in harmony with all the other pieces to which I am connected.Much Love, Morgine


    • Arjuna Ardagh December 12, 2014 at 3:36 pm // Reply

      Certainly some people were offended by this. I stand corrected!


  4. Erika December 10, 2014 at 8:32 am // Reply

    Please, dear Arjuna, don’t use words like these anymore just to get a few more readers. The ones you get with words like “prostitute” will not get the gist of the rest of your words. I really love what you write but lately you seem to become a bit desperate. What is going wrong with you?


    • Arjuna Ardagh December 12, 2014 at 3:35 pm // Reply

      Nothing is wrong! Thanks for asking. I am feeling quite passionate and energized. Perhaps this wording was a mistake. My apologies


  5. Karin December 10, 2014 at 9:56 am // Reply

    Dear Arjuna,
    I can read your message, absolutely, and I am with you in what you are saying. But I am also a bit hesitating about your choice of words.What you are describing is commitment and responsability for choices earlier made. Like having children and a divorce. Prostitution is something completely different, there I see no goal, or maybe a goal like money or a on one level good living, but always at expense of your soul. I know, my perspective. I know both, commitment and prostitution, the latter in business. When you in some way sell things that you don’t believe in selling, or that you maybe are selling and not really giving. As a business idea. I think prositution always gives an ache. My experience. But of course..depending on who we are, we need that too, obviously….for learning somehing and be pushed to take other steps.
    Love, Karin


    • Arjuna Ardagh December 12, 2014 at 3:34 pm // Reply

      I may have made a mistake in my choice of words here. I am shooting a video and will let you know when it is done


  6. Suzy December 10, 2014 at 11:29 am // Reply

    Hi Arjuna,

    Thank you for this: “How can I become a better me?” gives way to “How can there be less of me? How can I make way for the bigger love?”

    This is such a powerful question and inquiry. I’m taking it with me.



  7. Morgine December 10, 2014 at 5:52 pm // Reply

    Back in 1987 I read a book by Anne Wilson Schaef, “When Society Becomes An Addict”. It was an uncomfortable read. She clearly explained how we can become addicted to many other things beyond physical substances, like having dinner at a certain time, needing a certain brand of coffee, a job we hate, a relationship that is not working, assumptions and judgments of others, and so on. If written today, she could add how millions of people have become “prostitutes” to their technology, be it a computer, tablet, cell phone and so on! Many of these things prevent us from engaging with each other face to face, as I see tables of people at restaurants, where all faces and fingers on their phones! I have to drive differently and look out for people so engrossed in their phones, they never even LOOK when crossing the street anymore! People still text while driving even though warned of the many deaths which have occurred doing so.

    In your article, I believe we do “prostitute ourselves” to many of those habitual patterns of thinking we became accustomed to going up. We prostitute ourselves to “doing” over who we are “being” in every moment. We are constantly “on the run” doing things which no longer serve or nourish our very Being! For me, Arjuna, this is where I become a “whore.” Instead of becoming a loving servant to something which always and endlessly nourishes my Beingness. Something which guides me back into a more rich and fulfilling life, where I am making more “conscious and life serving choices!” My two cents.


    • Arjuna Ardagh December 12, 2014 at 3:33 pm // Reply

      Not just two cents, dear friend, but a fortune. Good points. And… the other side is that Skype and Facebook and e mail makes it much easier to stay connected with friends who are not physically present. So we can use the technology without it using us…


  8. Steven Strouth December 11, 2014 at 5:41 pm // Reply

    “I still had to be up at 6:00 in the morning for my other son: to make his breakfast, make sure everything was in his backpack, and drive him to school.” –– wrong… you did not have to be up at 6:00 in the morning… you chose to get up.


    Because it seemed better than the alternatives for the obligations you took on yourself.

    Let’s talk about victim thinking. You created your life based on your beliefs and to now tell us you were forced into actions and behavior due to things you have no part in is … CRAZY. You do not have to do anything you don’t want to. Surrender isn’t forcing yourself to do things you don’t want to. It’s about not resisting the present moment.

    I love you man, but if you continue writing this sort of thing you may want to change the title of your book from “Clear Seeing” to “Confused Seeing.”


    • Arjuna Ardagh December 12, 2014 at 3:31 pm // Reply

      I love you too, Steve. You are right, I chose to get up, and I loved every moment of raising my sons. Thank you!


  9. Joe Gagliano December 13, 2014 at 9:50 pm // Reply

    Loved it. I am with you my brother. The words did not get in the way for me.


  10. Anne December 15, 2014 at 9:04 pm // Reply

    THANK YOU Arjuna, your writing is one of the most eloquent transmissions I have experienced of the sacred prostitue, Mary Magdalene and what is possible in such a fresh new way! While it appears you were using the word for analogy only, it referenced for me a depth of vulnerability and surrender. The word is spot on for the possibilit of BEingness available. Your lack of trigger around using the word inspires healing. Having been studying sexuality and hearing the story of sacred prosttitutes and their role, I was always a wee bit unclear as to what was the message.You have landed that message for me; capturing the depth of communion available as ONE. Thank you.


  11. Anita December 16, 2014 at 8:13 am // Reply

    Dear Arjuna, having witnessed you replying to another participant\\’s question \\’live\\’ in the Client Interaction course, I just followed your lively outburst with THE word. No doubts in my mind, just a quick lively reaction of the group. A moment, a strong image, rooted in our hearts, at least in mine … and … gone.Writing it in a blog changes the connotation by time delay and the type of communication.I loved to follow the variety and depth of all aspects of the discussion and was most interested about your reaction. The virtuous and clear way you make use of today\\’s media instead of demonizing it and the way you stand corrected deepened my trust in your integrity. Thank you for shaking images, with a vision and with a good heart. Blessings to you!


  12. eliz denault December 16, 2014 at 6:31 pm // Reply

    Arjuna, sometimes it takes a strong metaphor to get the point across. I read the article based on the title- it piqued my curiosity
    and I am grateful that I did, thank you for sharing your “daring”.
    I appreciate the text that leaves little doubt about its message.


  13. Craig December 16, 2014 at 11:50 pm // Reply

    Hello Arjuna, IMHO I am concerned about the censorship of your post. It was a useful analogy. You must be free to express yourself as you feel is the most useful. Did Jesus’ diciples tell him not to turn over the money changes tables in the temple because it might upset some people? Did Linji worry about saying “if you see Buddha on the road, kill him”? Did Unmon hesitate to say “shit stick” when asked what is Buddha? Skillful Means must not be abandoned in our post-modern society which is overbrimming with cultural relativity and over-sensitivity to political correctness. Remain true and honest. Keep up the pithiness and directness as required to make your point. To awaken from the dream requires courage on the part of the student and teacher (coach). Thank you. I love your teachings.


  14. Amanda January 6, 2015 at 6:38 am // Reply

    Yes, agree with others Arjuna. Your choice of using \\”prostitute\\” was at some level, prostituting yourself for the sake of impact. I think there are far more powerful analogies you could have chosen, one less base, as Morgine said \\”When I surrender into this tender, unending, infinite, Divine Love, there is nothing base about it\\”. Having said that, I enjoy your creative writings and inspirations.


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