What is transcendental sex? Sexologist reveals the truth behind the experience

Transcendental sex has taken the internet by storm this week. Here, a sexologist reveals what it is and how to have it yourself

Image of two women's hands clasped together on a bed to represent transcendental sex
(Image credit: Getty)

Transcendental sex is the latest term that’s got the internet talking - and who could blame us? Described as the "best sex ever", it requires total relaxation, and often comes about by complete accident. 

This type of sex and tantric sex are often seen as two sides of the same coin. However, they are actually quite different. Both use sexual energy but it’s purposefully manipulated during tantric sex and everyone's aware of it, whereas the energy comes about accidentally to those having transcendental sex and it may not hold everyone involved. 

Regardless, whether you’re looking for exciting new sex positions to try with a partner or you want to incorporate more tantric sex practices into your bedroom activities, transcendental sex can change the way you approach intimacy going forward. This is what a sexologist wants you to know about it, the benefits, and how to have it with a partner for the first time. 

What is transcendental sex?

Transcendental sex refers to a changed state of consciousness achieved through sexual activity, often by surprise, says Madalaine Munro (opens in new tab), a sexologist specializing in psychosexual somatic therapy. For example, when having transcendent sex, someone might experience a total state of peace, an intense connection with their partner, a change in time, or they might perceive things in the room that others may not. 

Those who claim to have transcended during sex also say they’ve had visions, out-of-body experiences, or feelings of being transported to a different place.

Does transcendental sex have any backing in science? Yes, as it turns out. While you might think this elevated state is more of a mind-over-matter situation, Munro confirms that changes happen on a neurological level to make transcendent sex possible. 

Woman and man lying in bed with sunlight streaming through the window, looking into each others eyes, to represent transcendental sex

(Image credit: Getty Images)

“On a scientific level, it happens when our nervous system is in a para-sympathetic state,” she says. This is the opposite state of the sympathetic nervous system, which produces the adrenaline-fuelled flight or fight response. When we’re in this relaxed state, our body is capable of more functions - including those involving the reproductive systems. We're more likely to feel turned-on, able to fully get into the moment, and as a result, "arousal and sex hormones can alter our brain states,"

Munro adds, “It can be a very profound and life-changing experience for some. For those who practice tantric sex or are in an ‘energetic’ erotic blueprint, it’s more common.” If you're looking for another reason to learn how to deal with stress better, we can't think of a better one than this.

Benefits of transcendental sex

1. Deeper connection with yourself

As transcendental sex is a form of meditation, it can help you develop a deeper connection with yourself. “It’s a practice of presence and feeling what is going on inside us,” the sexologist says. “This means that it can also build self-trust and self-confidence as we learn that we are an embodiment of divine consciousness.”

If you want to be more confident both in the bedroom and in daily life, practicing methods that could lead to transcendent sex may be a great way forward as it forces you to focus and look introspectively. 

2. A deeper connection with spirituality

If you’re a spiritual person already, transcendental sex can help you strengthen this. “When you transcend your 3D experience through sex, it can be life-changing,” Munro tells us. “I have clients who have met God through sex and found their faith in something beyond what they thought they knew. It has led people to dedicate themselves to prioritizing their spiritual development, understanding that a connection to the source can be one of the most supportive and affirming tools we have in life.” 

3. Transcendental sex can help to deep your relationship with your partner

This type of sex not only improves your spiritual relationship but also the relationship between you and your partner. So if you’re looking to learn how to have better sex, then practicing habits for transcendence in the bedroom could really help with this, Munro says. “To have transcendental sex requires us to surrender to the experience. It means that our nervous system has to feel safe enough to change states, therefore when this happens with a partner, it can be a profound experience of trust and a unique bonding experience for couples.”

Being able to feel totally safe and vulnerable around your partner has plenty of its own benefits as well. If you're someone who struggles to have an orgasm as you feel under pressure in the heat of the moment, transcendent and tantric sex practices could be the thing that helps you to open up that conversation with your partner emotionally and relax physically, making the moment possible. 

How to have transcendental sex with a partner

While there’s no step-by-step method for having transcendent sex, there are some habits you can get into to deepen your connection with yourself - and your partner - to make it more likely. “If you want to transcend states of consciousness during sex, it’s important to have an understanding of presence in your own body, and a connection to spirituality and consciousness yourself,” says Munro. This includes meditation, yoga, and breathwork. “You can try a couple of these, find one that works, and incorporate it into your routine.” 

She also has the following tips for anyone looking to explore the possibility of transcendental sex: 

  • Focus on being present during sex: To transcend, which means to lose a sense of who we are and change our state of consciousness, we need to make sure we’re present to begin with. “I’d recommend returning to your body frequently and thinking about what you are feeling. If you notice your mind wandering, perhaps come back to your breath," she says.  
  • Take it slow: “The slower we go, the more present and connected we can be, and the more we can feel in our bodies.” 
  • Let go of expectations: “Whenever we have goal-orientated intimacy, it takes us out of our bodies and we can end up in our heads and focused on where we want to go,” Munro warns. “So while it’s helpful to set intentions, let go of what that may look and feel like.”  
  • Avoid drinking alcohol: While alcohol can, rightly or wrongly, help us to let go of inhibitions and relax, it tends to dull our senses. “When we are on a spiritual journey, substances such as alcohol may impact our bodily experiences and how present we can be.” 
  • Set up a sacred space: Whether it’s your bedroom or another room, create a space where you feel comfortable. “If you want to take your consciousness to the next level through sex then your space needs to reflect this. This can be a physical space or a mental one, where you ceremonially open your experience, perhaps with eye gazing or breathing together, sharing your intentions. This sets you up for a sacred sexual experience.” 
Grace Walsh
Health Editor

A digital health journalist with over five years experience writing and editing for UK publications, Grace has covered the world of health and wellbeing extensively for Cosmopolitan, The i Paper and more.


She started her career writing about the complexities of sex and relationships, before combining personal hobbies with professional and writing about fitness. Everything from the best protein powder to sleep technology, the latest health trend to nutrition essentials, Grace has a huge spectrum of interests in the wellness sphere. Having reported on the coronavirus pandemic since the very first swab, she now also counts public health among them.