Antonieta Paco on Sacred Sex Work
Antonieta Paco, AKA Sonia Sass, views her sex work as priestess work. A part of the sacred lineage that extends back to temple priestesses.
In this episode, we talk about how she became a mind/body/soul healer, how she explored her own indigenous roots and those of the communities, all around the country, that she found herself connected to. She also explains her work as a sex worker activist, and why it's such an important topic right now.
As discussed in the episode, here's Antonieta's list of sex worker advocacy organizations to support:
And more about my guest:
In 2010, Antonieta attended the Southwest Institute of Healing Arts in Tempe, AZ. She then graduated and became a certified Mind Body Wellness Practitioner, 200 Hour Registered Yoga Teacher, Hypnotherapist, Past-Life Regressionist, and Life Coach.
Antonieta, also known as Sonia Sass, has been an important ally and activist for sex workers and human rights for 13 years. She has been involved in various forms of SW and is a proud BDSM educator, nude model, and dancer. She focuses on a variety of styles that include Latin, tribal, pole dance, hip-hop, and burlesque. Antonieta is also an activist, dancer, poet, and strong woman of Maya and Meshika roots who embodies the strength of a warrior and the essence of the Goddess here to restore the ecology and the people through her teachings and her magic.
Learn more at priestessa.com or follow Antonieta on Instagram @priestess_ap
Follow Jera on Twitter: @thejerabrown or Instagram: @thejerabrown
Antonieta Paco 00:01
Anytime I acted in sex work, I was always at least trained by my community and my teachers to definitely invoke the Goddess or invoke the elements and to go beyond the physical when acting in sex work. So that was very important for me to always add the spiritual to the physical or to take over the the physical with the spiritual when I was working in sex work, and it didn't matter what type of sex work.
Jera Brown 00:34
My guest for this episode is Antonieta Paco. In 2010, Antonieta attended the Southwest Institute of healing arts in Tempe, Arizona. She then graduated and became a certified mind body wellness practitioner, 200 hour registered yoga teacher, hypnotherapist, past life regressionist and life coach, also known as Sonja Sass, Antonieta has been involved in various forms of sex work and has been an important ally and activist for sex workers and human rights for 13 years. She is a proud BDSM educator, nude model, and dancer. She focuses on a variety of styles that include Latin, tribal, pole-dance, hip hop, and burlesque. She is also an activist, dancer, poet, and strong woman of Maya and Meshika roots, who embodies the strength of a warrior and the essence of the goddess, here to restore the ecology and the people through her teachings, and her magic.
Jera Brown 01:30
So Antonieta, I am so excited to hear your story. Thank you for joining me.
Antonieta Paco 01:36
Thank you for having me. It's, it's truly a pleasure. I'm very grateful.
Jera Brown 01:41
Same here. So I want to dive into your story because you've, you've done a lot. You've covered a lot of ground. So where I start with with everybody. Tell me about your spiritual roots. You grew up, did you grow up in Mexico?
Antonieta Paco 01:58
So I grew up in the border town of Nogales, Arizona, and Nogales, Sonora, so you can say it's Mexico. Anytime you're that close to the border, you very much take in both cultures, both countries and both ways of life.
Jera Brown 02:19
That makes sense. Yeah. So tell me about those cultural influences, like how did they affect the faith or the spiritual aspects that you grew up with?
Antonieta Paco 02:31
So for me, I've always been very connected to the spirit world. And when I was born, it feels like, I can remember that moment, hear my mother's voice from the womb. And sometimes that's how connected I feel, to my family to my land. I don't know if it's because of all the hypnotherapy I've done, being a hypnosist, but I'm very connected to my subconscious and I have a great memory on many things. And I grew up in Nogales, and I lived in both places in Nogales, Mexico, and I lived in Nogales, Arizona, and I grew up Catholic. My parents were immigrants. They were born in Mexico in Nogales. And they were Catholic, but they were very open minded to different occults, such as Buddhism, and witchcraft. So that was always around my life. And I would see a lot of statues and alter spaces and smudging that surrounded my upbringing as a little kid. And my sister, my oldest sister was 13 years older than me. She was definitely deep Catholic and Santería Brujería. And she knew a lot of good iesma. And she kind of got me started as a young kid teaching me spells and limpias and how to ward yourself from malayohho and all these things.
Jera Brown 04:10
So you say that you're an activist dancer poet and strong woman of Maya and Meshika roots. Can you tell me about those roots too, and how they play into it.
Antonieta Paco 04:20
So my family are descendants of maya of the Mayan people, because that would be the correct term. I call them the Maya. And I'm also Meshika , which is just a translation to saying Mexican blended with indigenous, right, because if whoever whoever is not aware of Mexicans is a blend of Spaniard, European and of the Aslan people, Meshika people because we don't call them the Aztecs in Mexico. We don't call them the Aztecs in my family, we call them the Meshika people. So I'm Meshika. And I'm Maya The Mayan people. And I've also got my report, so those those what are they? the DNA things you do? And it was high in both of those, the Maya especially
Jera Brown 05:14
Antonieta Paco 05:15
Yes. And, and later in my journey as a teenager, so I was Catholic, and I learned all these things as a kid. But as a teenager, I was really big on the occult on research finding. And I wanted to be a theologist at that time in my life. So I spent a lot of time in the library with my boyfriend because he was a total nerd. And I was a total sapiosexual at that time, which means that you're attracted to people of intelligence or intelligence. So we spent a lot of time at the library together, I read a lot about theology, different religions, different faiths, a lot of Wiccan and pagan books, since they were very popular back then. This was like the late 90s, early 2000s. I informed myself with many different occults and Religions, because I was always trying to seek answers. I was very curious about afterlife and creator and, and I was very interested in learning it all. So I was definitely on a mission at a very young age, to seek My own faith and seek what everything meant to me. And at that same time, I was introduced to plant ceremonies, so plant medicine and ceremonies. And a lot of indigenous communities would adopt me as their family wherever I moved, so when I moved because I've lived all over, when I moved to Michigan, the Blackfoot took me in and we did Moon lodges there. I did Moon lodges in the red tent, with my Blackfoot sisters. And then in Arizona, I was part of the giant sweat lodge for over 10 years. In Colorado, they took me in and then in California, the Lakota people had me there and a room for me and everything. So just wherever I went, there was a high call and drawing for Native American and a lot of shamanistic traditions as well, that made a full circle back into my life because my parents were more colonized. And because of that, I missed out. And I found that later in my life through my own communities, indigenous communities.
Jera Brown 07:34
Gotcha. Yeah, that makes sense. So you're both seeking for roots, but then also, it sounds like just trying to find what other answers people had found in their own traditions?
Antonieta Paco 07:47
Absolutely. I consider myself an eclectic definitely more drawn to Native American ceremonies rootwork. Yeah, the goddess, things of that nature, always coming back to the land, and the feminine for sure.
Jera Brown 08:05
So I'm curious, like, you started in education in the health and wellness field, and how does this fit together for you? Because it seems like you You did a lot of studying of, I mean, if you study indigenous traditions, you're going to find a lot of holistic wellness practices that incorporate the body and the soul. So what led you to studying health and wellness in a in like a more formal education setting?
Antonieta Paco 08:37
Right. So my first aha moment was when I was pregnant, at 19. And I was working at a whatever a job as a sales rep in Arizona, a lot of call center jobs at that time. And because I was pregnant, I really wanted to do something that was more, in my opinion, just something my kid can feel, you know, like, something to look up to, you know, at that time in my life, not that you can't look up to someone in that position today, definitely my views would be different. But at that time, there was an emphasis on I need to do something with my life, because now I'm about to have a kid, right? So I decided to become a personal trainer. And in personal training, my teacher, a really good friend of mine introduced me to yoga, and I was pregnant. And he said yoga is just is the best form of exercise. And he really convinced me on that and made me a huge believer. And after that, I immediately went into the best school ever, and that's southwest Institute of healing arts in Tempe, Arizona, and they're like a mega college for every holistic practice, Eastern practice, indigenous practice you can think of right? And they help people like me, who can't afford to go to school They offer financial aid and help and grants and stuff like that. So I went to that program, and I became a yoga teacher, a hypnotherapist, a past life regressionist and a life coach, because I enrolled in their mind body wellness diploma program,
Jera Brown 10:20
all while being a very new mother.
Antonieta Paco 10:24
Yeah, yes. And it was an amazing ride because I learned how strong I was, through all that how dedicated I am how hard working like to have my kid, you know, literally, I was holding her when I graduated, it was a good feeling to accomplish so much at such a young age, even though some things were against me like having a baby at a very young age.
Jera Brown 10:47
So what's next? I mean, you're diving into the spiritual through all sorts of different ways at that point, and tying them into the body. So where do you go from there?
Antonieta Paco 11:02
Right. So I graduated back in 2009. From there, I worked very hard, and grew my resume as a yoga teacher. And I offered a lot of energetic healing work, because I learned that also in the school, in some elective programs and through my family, because my sister is a Reiki Master, and a massage therapist. I have an uncle who's a hypnotherapist with an office in Mexico. So I had those resources. And I had that community already kind of built before me, that was able to pave a way for me to come up next.
Jera Brown 11:42
You know, we skipped over something and I and I just realized like, I really don't want to skip over it. You grew up with so many different traditions. And yet your family was impacted by colonization. What what does that mean to you? Like, did it does it just feel like everything was watered down by colonization? And because it still It feels like the fragments are there. But can you can you just talk about that?
Antonieta Paco 12:09
I feel like, yes, and no, I definitely know that there's the the ancestral trauma, and just the history trauma on us. Indigenous people who experience everything that happened with the Spaniards coming and conquering and all that stuff. But at the same note, once the harm has been done, and Mexicans have been born from there, you really just need to start making peace with the different DNA and bloodlines you carry inside of you. Like I can't be mad at every Spaniard person. I see if anything, I carry some of that now, so I have to make peace. With that today. I'm not saying peace then. And I'm not saying everyone should forget what happened. Not at all. We should definitely remember what happened. We should put it up. We should educate everyone. However, there's a time where you need to make peace with what happened then. And this is now.
Jera Brown 13:16
Okay, yeah. Yeah, going back cuz when you just talked about your uncle being a hypnotherapist and your sister's a Reiki Master. And I'm just thinking like, your family is still still seeking and still becoming healers, which is awesome. It's just in a different way. It seems like then maybe it would have been if Well, it'd be very different than if the Spaniards had not come, right?
Antonieta Paco 13:44
Absolutely. So much. So I mean, a whole a whole community in Mexico is completely convinced of so many lies, and they never get told the truth. So many people are convinced that they're not even indigenous. That's the biggest lie anyone can ever tell them, you know, so and then there's other indigenous communities that love to play in on that oppression from the colonization to then say as well yeah, you're not indigenous and make them feel less than what they are. And that's very harmful and very unhealthy.
Jera Brown 14:19
Okay, so catching back up. So you, you graduated, you were working as a yoga teacher hypnotherapist, past life regressionist and life coach. Are you still in Tempe? After you graduate?
Antonieta Paco 14:32
No, I moved a lot. I got married at an early age, and I married a techno DJ from Detroit.
Jera Brown 14:39
Oh, wow. Okay,
Antonieta Paco 14:39
We did a lot of traveling. And a lot of music and and rave culture and more plant medicine was in that picture. That was definitely a time where I built community wherever I went. So when we moved to Michigan, where he was from, I built My community, there holistic, indigenous and kink. That's kind of where my kink and sex work journey started.
Jera Brown 15:09
Alright, dive into it.
Antonieta Paco 15:11
Yes. So, when I first got into sex work I actually was, I was very fortunate. And I was very privileged to meet amazing, amazing leaders who were dakinis, who were tantricas, priestesses and witches, and they're about 30, 40 years older than me. And they practice, you know, everything to do with sex education, and kink and play parties and all that. And they kind of showed me the ropes. So they were part of this group called the leather woman of Michigan. And through my indigenous service, I met them. And when I met them, it was very easy to learn the ropes and get started. I started off as a fetish, pregnant web camerer. And then from there moved into dancing after the baby. And then from there just kept working in different titles and sex work. I've done all kinds of stuff from from being a dominatrix, to actually doing performances. I was a rope bunny, at the Kink Street posts on Mega hood in San Francisco last September. So I just, you know, I'm just all around anyway, I can I can be in service with my sex work, and my priestess hood. I do.
Jera Brown 16:38
That's awesome. We're gonna we're gonna dive more into sex work. But tell me, when you say priestesshood, what does that mean to you?
Antonieta Paco 16:47
Well, when I think of the word priestess, and from my research findings, I find that a lot of that comes back to the original sex workers, the original, I guess, at that time, we didn't call them prostitutes, that's just it we called them priestesses. They were an important part of the community, people came with them with fertility issues, people came with them with advice, for, you know, any problems they could be having, whether it's sexual traumas, or bringing in more arousal and bringing in successful childbirths to the table, you know, so they were an important part of the community. And there is a whole whoredom and, and whore history that goes back to that, that people don't really want to talk about, but that all exist. And I'm a big believer of all of it.
Jera Brown 17:39
Totally. Yeah. So you're talking about temple priestesses.
Antonieta Paco 17:42
Correct. Yes. Yes.
Jera Brown 17:46
Are there, I mean, I know a lot from of those lineages from the Middle East, but from indigenous communities on this continent, have you ever been able to find those lineages?
Antonieta Paco 17:59
I find that there is there has been sex ceremonies in Native American culture. They're just basically back to like hunter and gatherer times. And people don't really like talking about that even the indigenous community, because again, they want to like I don't know, maybe not put out the fantasises or or, you know, uprise the image to work in sex work or be someone who can reclaim their sexuality in a healthy way, no matter the gender.
Jera Brown 18:32
So were you as you're discovering this, the leather communities in starting your journey into into sex work and kink. Were you married this whole time?
Antonieta Paco 18:42
In the beginning, I was married. Yes. And I was part of the red tent. So I hosted the red tent woman circles for many years. And I had a huge sex positive community through that marriage is how I opened up into the polyamory and the swinger community. So I started learning more about that. And definitely navigating what works and what didn't for myself, and definitely just learning more about the myths and the misconceptions that goes around with that.
Jera Brown 19:21
So what are we missing? After after you start your kink work and the red tent communities hosting red ten communities, Were there any other pivotal moments in your in your spiritual journey?
Antonieta Paco 19:36
Yes, because I think anytime I acted in sex work, I was always at least trained by my community and my teachers to definitely invoke the Goddess or invoke the elements and to go beyond the physical when, in acting in sex. work. So that was very important for me to always add the spiritual to the physical or to take over the the physical with the spiritual when I was working in sex work, and it didn't matter what type of sex work.
Jera Brown 20:12
So where are you now? Like what? What are your priorities right now in terms of your, your work and your service work.
Antonieta Paco 20:21
So right now, I offer BDSM mentorship, I do coaching sessions, very similar to life coaching sessions, a single person, or a couple can come in, and we start analyzing, and opening discussions and exploring what avenues they want to dive into in a safe, consensual, healthy way. And I also give them a lot of, because I know a lot of the community and the scene. So I give them a lot of stuff, they could go back on, like the best, the best sexologist in the community, the best workshops, the best parties, all that, so I kind of just load my clients up with that information. And I also do, I still dance. So I dance right now, but I do private events, bachelor parties, birthday parties, things of that nature. And I also offer cuddling sessions. And I also offer any, just not not paid, but if anyone wants any type of advice on getting into sex work, I don't mind people messaging me for that. I really love connecting with people. It's very easy for me, and it doesn't matter your background. So I like to help people of all different backgrounds. And you know, a lot of people tend to inbox me privately for many things, like they want to share a story of the first time they experience something or going to a play party or asking questions about something else. And I like that. So I'm very good for those things. And above all, I think it's important right now to be an activist. So I do a lot of activism.
Jera Brown 22:11
And you're, you're based in Oregon now.
Antonieta Paco 22:14
Yes, I live in Oregon now. And I offer my coaching through zoom and online on my website.
Jera Brown 22:21
Nice. It seems like you're the type of person that always wants to have multiple pans in the fire, which I totally get and appreciate.
Antonieta Paco 22:30
Yes. And I also do a lot of modeling. That's like my number one art.
Jera Brown 22:35
Antonieta Paco 22:36
And I do a lot of paid work. I do a lot of group. I do a lot of kink. So a lot of more bolder, exotic and spiritual work with my photo shoots. And a lot of that is on my website, too.
Jera Brown 22:50
Okay, yeah. So Priestessa.com.
Antonieta Paco 22:54
Yes, it's priestessa.com or priestessa.com. Exactly. However you you perceive it, it is
Jera Brown 23:01
Got it. So I want to go back. You discovered a lot of this. You said through the the women's leather community in Michigan. And I, I'm curious, like, did you find a big overlap between the leather community and this more like sacred sex work?
Antonieta Paco 23:21
If there was overlaps?
Jera Brown 23:22
Yeah. Because it seems like you you were discovering these things at the same time, like this spiritual sex work lineage, the priestess work, as well as kink. And I feel like when when I'm in, when I'm around leather people, leather folk, I don't feel like the spiritual components come up that much. They do just sort of in the general kink community, but not so much when I'm talking to folks who like are real heavy into the leather community. And I'm curious if that if that was different for you.
Antonieta Paco 23:54
It was very different for me because of the people who were in that group. The person who recruited me in was basically my moon Lodge, she was my moon lodge sister. And she had really big indigenous background. And she was a very spiritual person, person by nature. And her spouse or girlfriend at the time, was a sex geek. She was she went to the you know, got certified as a sex geek. She's a dakini. She's a Tantra and sex educator. So I think just coming into their circle, and then they're more experienced because they're crones, they're older. It was very safe. It was very good for me to see it from their eyes and see the good the off. The ugly the beautiful all that.
Jera Brown 24:47
Yeah, I do wonder if that community being crones makes a difference. I'm also curious just what conversations I've been missing out on with leather folk now. So One of the things you wanted to talk about was the difference between sex trafficking and sex work. So why don't you tell us what that means to you and why it's important to you.
Antonieta Paco 25:09
I think the easy answer that when you think of sex trafficking versus sex work, one is forceful, and non consensual. And the other is the opposite. A lot of them, a lot of people, a lot of individuals get this confused. And they immediately see the media marketing a lot of sex trafficking news. And they start to worry that sex work has that connection. But it doesn't, because there are two different departments. And when it comes to sex work nationwide, the more we find law enforcement spending time on their rescue missions, they call them, which is a raid that searches for sex trafficked victims, what they find is that they just go in and start raiding all communities, and all sex workers are then viewed as in need of saving. So this then fails to give attention to the involuntary or involuntary vulnerable victims.
Jera Brown 26:24
Yeah, totally. I think even like, liberal sex positive communities, and individuals who identify as progressive and sex positive don't always know the amount of legislation that's currently being passed that impacts consensual sex work. Under the guise of it being anti sex trafficking, when it doesn't actually do anything for sex trafficking victims, it just hurts people who are trying to make a living doing some form of sex work,
Antonieta Paco 26:58
agree. And another thing is the actual perceived involvement in the sex trade. Back to this article, I was reading with statistics results in approximately 30,000 arrests annually, posted back in 2015, according to FBI crime, crime data, so that means 40% of adults arrested for prostitution were in fact black. And also, there's a 24% in Latino. So not only are women being targeted, but bpoc people of color, women of color are being targeted.
Jera Brown 27:39
Yeah, that's a really good point.
Antonieta Paco 27:42
And women of color have always fought for bodily autonomy, and resisted against exploitation. And instead of punishing, and shaming survival strategies, we should invest in expanding choices by decriminalizing sex work, because it is a racial justice issue. And it requires us to address the root causes of vulnerability. So instead of trying to shame them, we need to check ourselves by making sure we silence our judgment, to listen to those voices, their voices, and holding space for their healing, supporting them on their own terms, and recognizing their agency by respecting their choices, and challenging structural oppression on all fronts.
Jera Brown 28:33
So I'm going to give a shout out to the National Coalition for sexual freedom, which does a lot of political lobbying for sex workers and, and other sexual freedom related topics and communities. But I'm curious, like what other organizations or activists do you recommend?
Antonieta Paco 28:53
Oh, I have a great list.
Jera Brown 28:55
And we will include it in the show notes too.
Antonieta Paco 28:58
Okay, so sex worker support organizations, that yes, definitely shout out to the one you just mentioned, because I am involved in a lot of their activism and meetups as well. And also St. James Infirmary that can just be looked up at the StJamesinfirmary.org. Swap. That's at swapusa.org strass, strassdot org, and the Amnesty International is another good one. And red umbrella. That's a good one as well. And then there's a Plaperts. It's P L A, P E R T S, so play pert That one's for Latin America, so that one supports for more bpoc communities, and also Sex Work Europe. That one's a good one too. So that was kind of going more on a global scale. But these are really good ones to support.
Jera Brown 30:07
That's great. Thank you for that list that's very holistic. And I think it's so hard. I get overwhelmed when I think about how different sex work is in different communities. I try really hard not to make assumptions, but I'm mostly just talking about it from a US perspective. Yeah. So yeah, it's really exciting that you're doing this activist work. And there's so many amazing sex work activists who are both advocating for sex work to be decriminalized, but also just, I mean, the sex work community is so, incredibly inclusive, you know, and when you think about intersectional feminism, I think that sex workers are really at the heart of it. I don't actually have a question for there. It was just something on my, on my mind.
Antonieta Paco 30:58
Absolutely. I agree completely. And another thing is, we just need to make the obvious statement that when it comes to just decriminalizing sex work, we actually start to create more safety and protection for these women, or these people of color for the LGBTQ community, because they have high numbers that are in fact, sex workers, too. So we create more safety, because then if it's decriminalized, they can report abuse, or crimes, they can be involved in asking for more human rights and workers rights, if they do work for a legal business. So once it becomes decriminalized, these things can start being offered for sex workers. And that's important to reduce violence, and the war on sex workers.
Jera Brown 31:52
So do you post a lot about these issues? Like if so, like, where's the best place for folks to follow you? I know you you do a lot on Facebook, but is that your, your best platform?
Antonieta Paco 32:06
As times keep moving forward, I do have to get on with times, right? So I do have an IG. I keep it private for my protection. But I'm always after I look at someone's profile, and you know, feel the energy is safe, then I can go ahead and accept you. If you're there to support the work, I'll definitely accept you. So I have my IG, which is _SonjaSass, and I have now a tiktok, which is newer. And that's _SonjaSass as well. And yes, those are my sex work platforms. That's where I share more of my activism, my poems, and my dance.
Jera Brown 32:47
Nice. So I'm gonna have you read the poems, two poems in just a minute. I wanted to lead up to them. Oh, we haven't talked about your dance at all. Tell us about your dance, like, tell us what it means to you.
Antonieta Paco 33:00
Dancing is prayer. It's a form of prayer to me. So and that's what the indigenous believe. So when it comes to dancing, it doesn't matter what style what form. I mean, you've seen indigenous dances such as powwow, or African dance and it it looks like they're twerking girl. Like they're putting their all into it, okay? They're banging their, their heads, their hands, their feet, their hips, their, butt everything's in full motion, everything is connected to the elements around them to the soil beneath them, the skies above them, and they really put their heart and love into it. So when I dance, it doesn't matter what form it could be, latin, or burlesque or hip hop or pole, it doesn't matter. I put my all into it, my whole heart, my whole soul, all my passion, and my respect for what's around me and who's in front of me.
Jera Brown 34:01
So, dance is a spiritual practice for you dances is a prayer, what else keeps you connected to... You're connected to the ancestors? Like what are what are your spiritual practices?
Antonieta Paco 34:14
I say that goes back to my elective, being a electicive Witch. So I do a lot of ancestors work. I have an ancestor altar. I write poems to my ancestors. I visit them with offerings. And I do a lot of channeling and meditation, you know, that comes from just, you know, my yoga and being a very dreamy Pisces, I guess. And I just really, really love connection. So when it comes to my roots, my grandmothers and grandfathers before me, I'm definitely constantly keeping them in my everyday prayer and my everyday thought when I'm getting in my car, I say a prayer to my ancestors and whatever I have Next to me, whether it's my stone or my rosary or both, so I give prayers, everything. And when I'm out and about it's the same mentality, just giving thanks, giving thanks. When I wake up for another day, I think creator and I think my ancestors, because I am their manifested prayers. So I know we're, I'm them. Like, they're me. It's, it's, there's really no separation from me with that.
Jera Brown 35:29
I love that. Okay last question before I ask you to read your your poetry. Something that's that sticks out to me is that I mean, all of your work has been holistic, some things that combined the body and the soul. And it's service oriented, right? Like, it's a they're all healing work and in so many ways. It's interesting to me that it's, it's slowly became more and more erotic, or, you know, that combined the sexual ailments. And I'm curious what that means to you like that, that trans... not transition, the evolution of using more of, of the erotic or sexual in your, your healing work.
Antonieta Paco 36:14
Right, I feel like I've been a high, highly sexual being, for a very long time, in my individual journey. I started having sex very young in my life, right after puberty young. And not that I'm telling everybody live my story, but that's my story. So and I had a lot of, even at a young age, I just felt very connected to sex magic. Now, I can call it that, because I didn't know what it was called then. But sex magic is the act of putting prayers in your orgasms or putting prayers in your body in your thoughts and your senses as you're aroused as you're feeling pleasure. And I definitely just, over time, known that since the most spiritual way, and I guess, transition or portal to even arrive on this land was through sex, there's something there there's an origin with that the Yoni holds its its origin as a portal. And Yoni holders are very powerful. And when you tap into that power, and then that that blood magic, because I'm very connected with blood, magic too, you just learn so much about yourself and all of it becomes beautiful, and you're not scared to talk about that, and you're not shy to share it with the world.
Jera Brown 37:51
I love that. So I think that's a good transition. I would love to hear the two poems.
Antonieta Paco 37:58
Yes. So I have two poems, and one wasn't supposed to be a poem. It just ended that way. I was doing some writing on like, how sex work sounds like when they're trying to do the discriminated, sorry, I got those words confused. But when they're trying to discriminate sex work, I was kind of just journaling, and it ended up becoming a poem. So I'm going to read that one first. And then I'll read my actual poem I wrote back in 2018. And that one is very spiritual and powerful. So we'll start with this one first.
Antonieta Paco 38:34
I said, this is how sex work discrimination looks. It's totally acceptable to send a new potential mate nudes. Or once you engage in intimacy with a partner, you decide to film some porn, but sex work? That's disgusting, and super inappropriate. How dare they exist? It's totally acceptable. to plan a fun, adventurous day with your girlfriends or take a pole dancing class. But sex work? That's disgusting, and super inappropriate. How dare they exist? It's totally acceptable to learn dance styles, such as floor work, or twerking. But sex work? That's disgusting, and super inappropriate. How dare they exist? It's totally acceptable joining fashion trends that popularized fishnets G strings pleasers, neon colors like green stockings, ass claps body suits and corsets, but sex work? that's disgusting, and super inappropriate. How dare they exist? It's totally acceptable to be a housewife and entice your husband with sex to get what you want. Or go on a date with a generous partner have him buy you Dinner and a gift such as flowers or jewelry, and then have sex after. But sex work? That's disgusting, and super inappropriate. How dare they exist? It's totally acceptable to fetishize the idea of having a sugar daddy, sugar mama or financial sub, for physical financial support. But sex work? that's disgusting, and super inappropriate. How dare they exist? And lastly, it's totally acceptable to visit a robot hostel in Texas as of right now, in 2022. You can pay to fuck a robot, but sex work? that's disgusting and super inappropriate. How dare they exist?
Jera Brown 40:52
Yeah, I feel that
Antonieta Paco 40:55
That long pause like Aha, mhmm silent, silent snaps
Jera Brown 41:01
What it reminds me of is um, I was looking up forums from the Airbnb community. Somebody found out that somebody she'd rented her Airbnb to had been using it to see clients, and there's just this like, long thread of like, how disgusting how awful. There must be like, all sorts of germs, and sex workers are so like, you know, filled with STIs and stuff. I was just thinking, How is this? Like? Are these people feminists? Like do they identify as feminists? You know, and just that it's so weird.
Antonieta Paco 41:43
Right? Because the Airbnb is literally a hotel room. So what else would they be doing? have sex or your partner maybe masterbate by yourself anyway? So why would it make any difference one difference if a transaction is involved? That's funny. That's so funny.
Jera Brown 42:05
All right. So your actual poem?
Antonieta Paco 42:11
Yes, yes. I go on on my little. My my writing spurs. So here, let me let me get into the actual poem. So it's called To my sex workers.
Antonieta Paco 42:27
To my sex workers, the woman who know how to practice consent, but is told she's not so innocent. You are the embodiment of sacred sex our planet needs as our instrument. So fucking vigilant as you travel through imminent danger, which such diligence your chosen work is intimate. Your boundaries have discipline. Your service spreads ancient, priestess teachings that are infinite, to my sex workers, woman of confidence with a spirit of a rebel, the ignorant sheep referred to you as a She devil, not even realizing your work invokes and restores healing and pleasure that raises sea levels. To my sex workers. You are liberated and empowered by sex. You can care less what they say. When you choose your outfits, you got them breaking their necks, but you're professional, you don't settle. You stay cashing those checks. You're the best at what you do, no matter what happens next. You don't break or give up. on your persistent track. To my sex workers, true women who say fuck the matrix and become their own boss. Society will brainwash you to think that all sex work derives from trauma, traffic, or a past that's lost. But the truth is, more and more activism is reaching out. Sex workers love their job, and stay fighting for their rights at all costs. Did you know that there's laws on the planet where sex workers have rights and are praised? I know in the US whoredom is frowned upon. But in New Zealand sex workers receive social benefits under employment laws. In Germany, you qualify for pensions and they provide you with health insurance to help you out. In Australia. You can get tax write offs for sex tours, dance lessons, makeup and lingerie. Don't you dare give me your spiel that sex workers are hoes and have no place in your hood. These workers are sex healers, and sacred whores. Reclaiming the power back in the slurs you use, like bitch and slut with their flawless groove. The way they move the things they do still isn't as inspirational as their grind for food to my sex workers. Because of you. sex positivity exist. You frequently get tested and checked out for shit. You're courageous bravery doesn't go unnoticed one bit, your daily rituals are self care, self love. And as you grab your prayer beads to you, you know your work is an act of needed deeds. You embody the goddess Aphrodite Lilith Cali and Isis. But most importantly, you become the vessel of sexual freedom and your powers emit love that are priceless. The sex worker, she is the goddess that we need, leaving any eyes or bodies that she sees on their knees, asking you to be saved from dark trapped places to open portals of light. When she Please pose you a source to hand you the keys to find your peace. The sex worker here to please the sex worker, such a sacred queen to my sex workers, I see you I feel you, I am you. Sex work is work support our team.
Jera Brown 46:00
I love the idea of sex work as a goddess in and of itself. That's really powerful. It feels like I mean, you know, you you invoked different Goddesses and from different cultures. But I, I do think that there's I mean, there's there's a spirit that calls you to do this work and that empowers you. And being able to think about that, as the sort of divine being that, like, keeps us going and protects us is really powerful.
Antonieta Paco 46:31
Absolutely and as you finish saying that I'm looking at the time and it's this two two two. And that I and I know a lot of numerology too. And that's, that's harmony, and faith. So what you're saying is truly the faith of why we're here. And I do believe a sex worker kind of creates your own archetype in this world in this community. You know, she she is many different reasons that a lot of people are scared to talk about and can't be in a safe community to talk about. I mean, look at our community in our state. I mean, the States, the United States. So in the United States, there's only about 23 states that teach sex education. And those parents can opt out at any time because of religious backgrounds or other cultural differences. So that lets you know, not a lot of people learn about sex to begin with. And sex workers are here to teach you.
Jera Brown 47:31
Truly, yeah. Educators above all else.
Antonieta Paco 47:35
Yes, yes. And going back to real quick, that umbrella term. When people hear sex work, they think of you know, immediately escort or even a more dirty word to the dictionary, prostitute. But sex work. And sex worker is an umbrella term, it can mean many things. It can mean sex educator, it can mean tantrica, or a dakini. You know, someone who teaches the Tantra and the ancient sex teachings, it can be a webcamer, phone operator, dancer, dom. There is a model. So there's just so much that is covered when you say the word sex worker that people haven't even discovered, because they immediately hear the news say sex work, and they think traffic or they think prostitute, but there's so many versions of and nothing's wrong with being a prostitute, either. But there's just so many versions to that word and that umbrella.
Jera Brown 48:37
Right. When I when I started I, I started advertising as a sacred intimate. And there, I mean, I had to use escort sites to advertise because there wasn't anything else, you know, and part of that is just that, because everything is is criminalized, there's not avenues for for people to find the providers that they need. You know, like it's all so hush hush and, and sites get shut down and it's constantly a headache to figure out where it's safe to advertise. And so when I think about this umbrella, I think about how we it all gets sort of shuffled or shoved into these tiny little tunnels, because we don't have space.
Antonieta Paco 49:26
And we don't want to make the space again, because it's going back to its roots in a bit. You know, that patriarchal war on women, that war on immigrants, people of color bpoc That war on LGBTQ trans people, you know, it's about taking away people's rights, taking away their identity to belong, and that's why it's so important for us sex workers to stay strong, stay together, and do our inner work and help each other as the journey continues,
Jera Brown 50:01
So I just want to say thank you for coming to this conversation was specific things that you wanted to talk about and making sure that activism was such an important part of it along with your own journey. So I really appreciate it. It's been a great conversation, hopefully educating to people for those of you listening if there's things that you don't understand or want to hear more about, by all means, reach out, you can reach me at Jera@JeraBrown.com And I'm sure Antonieta already said that her DMs are open if you have questions. So that's, that's such a gift and not everybody does that.
Antonieta Paco 50:42
Yes, my consent to bothering me questioning me. At any time about sex work or other stuff you can't talk about in other communities or your families definitely come to me. I love talking to people. I love connecting with people. So my DMs are open. You could go priestessa.com or priestessa and all my tags are there for all my social media.
Jera Brown 51:11
Let's end with that. Let's end with that call to action.
Antonieta Paco 51:16
Jera Brown 51:16
Thank you. Thank you again for your time and for doing this interview.
Antonieta Paco 51:20
Absolutely. It was my pleasure. Truly I'm grateful.