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Category Archives: Sex

Aspects of sexuality: including sexual health and healing, sexual expression, and sexual energetics.

Between my Thighs….

wild woman

If,

And this is a hypothetical if,

If I were ever to have you between my powerful thighs, I would ride you through every feeling, every emotion, every energy, every sensation you have ever run from.

And you would have no choice but to dissolve; dissolve completely into life. Into the life you came from, but have become cut off from.

You would laugh and you would cry and you would not even be able to label what you are feeling as this or as that… You would simply know you are alive and you would know you are love, and we could dance right through life in into death, and even to the placeless place beyond beyond both!

But, my love, you are afraid. When you even glimpse that force of life in me you immediately project. “All look! That is her pain, her suffering, her wounds”. You are convinced.

No, my love, that is life. Only your mind judges certain flavours of life force as bad, wrong or problematic. If you can only see beyond that judgement and drink it in as it comes, directly experiencing instead of judging and analysing, you would find yourself in the ecstasy of the flow of life.

I am not wounded. I am open to life. I have dedicated my heart, my body, my soul to opening to allow any flavour of life to flow through unhindered. It has taken years of dedicated practice and courage to reclaim each piece of life…From grief to ecstasy; rage to deep peace, whether cascades of tears or unstoppable laughter…let it flow!

It is not I who is wounded! I am free! I am alive! I am ecstatic! I am orgasmic! I may be crying in this moment, but that is just life in that moment. The next moment something else may be there.

It seems far more wounded to be shut off from life.

Being shut off from life makes people fake, plastic, dead, stiff, inauthentic. They have hardened against their tears or suppressed their anger… Whatever they have cut off, it has cut off their life force.

I am an invitation into life! It is not me that is so terrifying but the life that flows through me…it threatens to shatter your shells, it threatens to wake you and shake you and ultimately to dissolve you.

If ever you found yourself between my thighs…

But do not fear, this is hypothetical. For I am not pushy and have nothing to prove! I dance with those who choose to dance too! Those who wish to sit at the edge of the dance floor of life and judge or label from a safe distance are welcome to continue to do so! When they are ready to be free they can get up and dance… We are all free.

No I would never force my way in… I only wait for the portal that is Love. Love is the only way to enter. Love is there when judgement is dropped. Then, and only then, would I take you between my thighs…

Tantra for Teenagers

Image

Teen Love

I am no authority on teenagers…there are very few in my life. But I was one once, so certainly I have that under my belt. And as I sit on a plane to Greece, I am surrounded by groups of young people off on their two weeks of binge drinking and stranger shagging. Meanwhile I have my head in a Tantra book. As I catch morsels of overheard conversations, I am tempted to turn to them and begin to preach the Gospel of Tantra! Don’t do it kids! Don’t separate your consciousness from your sexuality and begin to condition yourselves to a lifetime of sexual experiences in which you are not present!

But hey, most of us did at some point. Perhaps you have to fall in order to pick yourself up. It was only after three years of excessive drinking that I gave up alcohol once and for all and headed to India to find something else of life aged 18 (yes I gave up drinking once I became the legal age to drink!)

But what would it be like if, when those hormones firsts start pumping, someone came to talk to us about Tantra? What if, instead of the conflicting message of “sex is a biological method of reproduction” versus the Hollywood messages of “everyone has flawless bodies and is having a lot of great sex all the time”, we were given some sort of sharing about how sex is related to love, and that it can create very strong experiences. What if the word “sacred” were even mentioned in the same sentence as the word “sex”. What then?

And how about, as those surges of energy come through the young teenage body, someone explained sexual energy? Imagine that concept helping our youth to understand the overwhelming forces at play within, and perhaps even learning a few basic tools to help deal with all of that energy…a little breathwork to support them through moments of intense energy surge. Imagine if we were teaching our young people to understand their own sexual energy before they connect to the energy of another, and then when they do connect they know a little about energies playing together.

How about explaining polarity to children as suddenly they gain a sense of being different from the other sex. How about marking that shift, from child to young adult, with a rite of passage. Returning to nature, as our distant ancestors once did, with our peers and our elders, to find out what it is to become a man/woman. What if, instead of MTV icons of male- and female-ness, teenagers learned about age-old archtypes, and about masculine and feminine energies in nature and the universe. Perhaps we could teach them about our own unique make-up of energies, of masculine and feminine traits and tendencies…and how to be at ease with ourselves just as we are.

What if teenagers were shown how to respect the other sex? Taught how to honour qualities that they may not themselves embody. How to share the delights of our differences…not to try to steal something from the other, or to dominate or gain power over the other.

And how about if teenagers were shown sex beyond the pornographic hard, edgy, loveless sex? What if they were exposed to sensuous and loving union? What if they saw two human beings in real and deep connection, with open eyes seeing one another and open hearts feeling one another. What if they actually glimpsed what it looks like when lovers are seeing the divine in one another …

And how would it be to show our young people the connections between sexuality and nature…to show that sex is natural; that it mirrors the gushing rivers and burning fires; the animal instinct. That some beautiful energies can flow between two bodies, an experience of deep aliveness…what if we let them know that?

How useful would it be to understand a little of creating safe space? Of boundaries…ever-shifting yet hugely important. Of “yes’s” and “no’s” and even options such as “can we just stop and hold each other?” And imagine if young people were taught to find their inner truth, their inner knowing…and learn to trust that. So they are no longer susceptible to the suggestion of every Tom, Dick and Harry, but able instead to look within and find what is right for them in each fresh new moment. Imagine if someone showed them that!

Because then even the adults could relax a bit. Instead of trying desperately to shield their young from sexuality, working against a natural explosion of hormones, parents could rest a little knowing that their children were actually equipped to enter the world of sexuality with the empowerment they need to begin such an epic journey. Not only that, but they might actually have some of the  communication skills to discuss it with their parents. The right education would also create the open-minded atmosphere in which teenagers sexual experiences are not all secretive and hidden from fear of being caught.

Many people seek out tantra in their thirties and forties. But why wait? Imagine what a difference it could make if teenagers were initiated into Tantra. Then perhaps I’d be sat on a plane with a load of youthful beings off to seek connection to nature, learn to open their hearts and discover the joys of being a sexual and alive being.

Paradise Calls

What stops you from walking back into Eden?

I, woman, am Paradise.  The cicadas’ call is my heart beat; the sun shine radiates through my skin; the waves emerge out of my womb; the moon shines in my soul.

What stops you from entering and laying in my garden?

You have been raised in a world where they taught you that you do not deserve Paradise for you were born with original sin, separated from God. Thus pain is the flavour of your existence, and pleasure something you must steal in the shadows of night.

Whilst you are busy stealing, I stand here with arms full of overflowing gifts, but you cannot see. How can you see the plenty, when you still believe in lack?

The tiny pleasures you grasp as your hand reaches out to snatch them bring you no lasting joy, for when the morning light appears you retaliate in shame. You shudder in self-loathing, and crawl back into your hole, dealing out the self-punishment…for after all you are not a man that deserves Paradise…or so they told you.

There is a True Pleasure beyond all that are stolen. If your pleasure cannot be drank in the bright light of consciousness, then it will never bring you Bliss.

Paradise calls. What do you need to do in order to remember that Bliss is your birthright and paradise your home?

She is standing there, calling you, waiting for you to return. But to enter the garden, you must shake off the chains, the beliefs that you are wrapped in. Realize that though you never chose to take them, you can choose to let them go.

She is lying there, waiting open-armed, for you to return and lay in her soft grass and undulating hills. Yet still you scrabble around on the floor of a darkened alleyway searching for scraps.

Step out of the shadows and fall into my arms, My breasts are full of love, like juicy fruit. My yoni an ever-flowing waterfall. Steal from me, and my waters dry up, my fruits wither and die.

Remember Paradise,

Remember your true nature,

Remember how to receive,

…Paradise calls.

Culture has entrapped us. Only Nature can bring us home.

The Pitfalls of Tantra

In most traditional paths of Tantra and Taoist Sexual Practices you often hear of the importance to “purify” before cultivating sexual energy. The Taoists teach that because sexual energy is immensely creative, it will enhance and grow everything. Thus if one has a lot of un-purified anger, raising sexual energy will make you even more angry. If you have a lot of fear, it can produce anxiety attacks. Preparation practices are used to clear the energetic blocks that manifest these negative emotions before cultivating sexual chi. In the path of Tibetan Tantra, a practitioner would complete many years of non-tantric spiritual practice before starting any tantric practices. Tantra Yoga provides a wide range of techniques to prepare body and mind for the sexual practices of tantra.

But what exactly is it that we are purifying and why? What happens if someone embarks on a path of sexual practices without this preparation?

One way to view this is in terms of the ego, or the sense of false self or false identity.

As we are raised in a typical upbringing we are conditioned towards a sense of self and identity. This becomes our reality, gives us a strong sense of “I”, which may have qualities of self-importance and qualities of self-destruction also. Because we believe this is who we are, this sense of self becomes quite dense. It is manifested physically through our body and health, energetically through our emotions and mental through our beliefs. This can be called one’s ego. It is only when one embarks on a spiritual path that one begins to look towards any other reality.

Different spiritual paths offer different methods and practices that can facilitate this process. In Tantric pathways such methods may be called “purification”. The intention is to give less energy to the false aspects of self, and thus they become less dense. Some aspects of self we are more attached to than others and these may be harder to drop. Often practices of fire are used to “burn the karmic fire” and bring enough heat or energy to purify stubborn attachments.

There is a wide range of purification methods found in Tantric and Taoist lineages. They are usually on every level: physical, emotional, energetical and mental, to purify all levels. For example, there may be physical yoga posture or qigong exercises, dietary methods, emotional release, energy practices, and meditation for the mind.

As we embark on purification, the false sense of self becomes less dense, less real, and we become more aware of an inner light, divine presence, pure consciousness as the reality of who we really are. This is sometimes called our True Nature or Ultimate Reality. Instead of living from the desires seeded in ego-self, we live through the desires of Truth. The desire of Truth is almost a misnomer, because the desire is so transparent; so this desire-momentum is more of an “effortless unfolding”, as the Taoists call it.

At what point along the path of purification does one begin sexual practices?

Should one wait until completely purified, and what does that mean? Does one have to completely dissolve the ego-self and become a being of pure light before engaging in sexual practice?

This is not expected, and so there is another method used along with purification. It is the path of bhakti or devotion. This is simply the act of devoting one’s sexual practice to the Divine, and can be done even before one has recognised one’s true nature. There are different forms of this.

One method of devotion is quite simply to devote ones practice to Consciousness. In Taoism this is called itself The Tao or wu wei, sometimes translated as the Source, and may be found my meditating one one’s stillpoint/center (“dantien”). In Tantra it may be called consecration, and is simply the act of devoting one’s practice or sexual act to Consciousness or to The Divine.

Another form of devotion is through divine duality. In Taoism one may connect to Heaven and Earth, the “True Masculine” and “True Feminine” (using qigong or meditation). These are seen as the divine aspects of the fire and water of human masculinity and femininity. In Tantra the equivalent is Shiva and Shakti, the divine masculine and the divine feminine. In the technique of transfiguration we see our beloved as Shiva or Shakti, as well as transfiguring ourselves by meditating on our divine being.

What happens if we proceed with sexual practice without purification and devotion?

Sexual energy is extremely powerful, and thus use of sexual cultivation methods can make someone very powerful. Power is itself is neutral. However, the application of power may be widely differing, as we see from the good king/bad king archetypes. If power is attached to ego, then we tend to have the power to create more karma for ourself, i.e. to create trouble!

This is not just a non-tangible spiritual concept, but a solid reality. We can see it at play in the corporate world. We see companies motivated by greed and other ego-centric sources, and a lot of ripples are created, such as violation of human rights, animal rights and environmental damage. Often such companies produce products that fuel people’s unconscious desire patterns. On the other hand we are starting to see the emergence of ethical companies, motivated by higher values such as care for the environment and fair trade values. The products or services created by such companies are more likely to support the customer’s spiritual evolution and well-being.

Those who start to generate and cultivate a lot of sexual energy without purification and devotion run the risk of mis-using their power. The classic case would be the corrupt tantric guru, who takes advantage of seekers’ desires to evolve by using them sexually for his own pleasure and the cultivation of yet more power. There are also cases of “sexual healers” using techniques to better their fame, glory and bank balance, leaving their clients often feeling violated and confused (or the clients develop their own patterns of mis-use of power). Just as with the ego-centric company, all that is created from some actions will take one farther from spiritual evolution and awakening rather than closer to.

How do we know when we are dealing with an unhealthy power dynamic?

How, on a path when we are vulnerable through lack of experience, can we recognise mis-use of power? We cannot rely on what people say because words can be used to convey truth and mis-truth. Instead we must learn to recognise the presence of ego. This is done not by judging the ego of others’, but always looking within to one’s own ego.

On our own path, this is where we are really responsible. It is up to us to monitor if we are using our practices to cultivate ego or True Nature. One way is to follow our desires back to the seed, or source within.  Desire is what fuels all action, so when you desire to do something check in with yourself and ask “what part of me would benefit from this?” Then see: does that part feel like ego or higher self?

For example, you desire to act as a sexual healer and offer a sexual massage to another person. Before acting upon this desire, stop and meditate into a state of clear mind. Then contemplate the desire itself and look to the source of the desire. What part of you would benefit from the act? If you find that you would like to be seen as a great tantric healer, you would like people to think of you as some great sexual expert…then this has the scent of ego about it! If however, as you contemplate the desire you feel the presence of the Divine, or you feel a strong field of consciousness, then this desire is more likely to be in harmony with spiritual evolution, both for you and the recipient.

The same process can be done from the recipient’s point of view. If you feel a desire to go to a sexual healer for a session, again sit in meditation until the mind becomes clear and then examine the desire. What part of you would benefit? You may discover you are trying to get something from the healer “if I have a session from this healer I will get some of their energy/power.” This is therefore an ego-desire. However, if contemplating the desire brings you into a state of higher consciousness, then it is more likely the desire is divine guidance rather than ego. It is not about the actions we take, but the source of those actions.

The more power involved, the more accentuated the karmic results will be. In this example, the healer is in the position of greater power (as is any teacher, guru or initiator) and therefore it is even more important that they maintain their integrity. If someone holding a lot of power performs an abusive action, it has a much stronger effect than an action of someone with less power. In this way, tantric teachers, healers and initiators have a heavier karmic responsibility. Though they may appear to cause harm to others, ultimately the greatest harm is to themselves. (If we really follow along lines of karmic responsibility we can see that the participants in the acts have also chosen to join in from an ego-based desire, and thus have their own karmic story going on).

This process of the evaluation of desire can be undertaken periodically as one moves along a tantric path, in order to keep oneself in spiritual evolution, and to avoid the pitfalls of the mis-use of power. Often there are a mixture of seed intentions. Part of us desires the fame and glory and part of us desires union with the divine. If we can find both within, we can then put our energy behind the latter and make a conscious choice.

What would this actually look like?

If one propagates ego-based desires, one creates more suffering and illusion. If one follows pure desires, one moves along a path of awakening. Simple!

If you tantric practices appear to be developing a huge sense of ego within you, this is a sign to stop and consider purification and devotion. If you are practicing multi-orgasmic practices for example, and you start feeling like “wow, I am so orgasmic” and you start to publicize the Shashi Solluna Multiorgasmic Method™, then perhaps there is some ego attachment going on. If however, as this sexual energy cascades within you, you feel that you are dissolving into the Absolute, and it brings you into a space of devotion to Spirit or awe of the Mystery; then there is less YOU, and the practices are working in a transcendental way.

It only take regular reflection and ruthless honesty with oneself to discern.

Some schools of Tantra recommend regular, if not daily, devotion of all practices to God/Spirit/Consciousness as a way to help prevent the pitfall of growing ego. Life tends to slap us round the face when we have fallen off the path, so paying attention and not blaming others if this happens, can also help.

Ultimately, we are all responsible for our own integrity, and we are not here to point out other peoples’ egoic ways. Can we trust karmic law to take care and keep the universal balance that we do not need to be the one to fix everyone else’s mistakes or prevent their pitfalls. After all, perhaps we all need to fall in a pit from time to time in order to feel the bump, see what happened and choose a new pathway next time!

 

copyright © Shashi Solluna 2011. all rights reserved.

To Bleed or not to Bleed?

To Bleed or not to Bleed? That is the question…

Documentation of many lineages of Tantra and Tao mention the deliberate cessation of the menstruation for women as a way to conserve energy. It is often compared to the loss of energy that a man experiences after ejaculation, and thus a woman is encouraged to strive to end her bleeding, just as a man learns to prevent ejaculation. In the Tao lineage this practice is referred to “slaying the red dragon”.

On the other hand, many goddess-based lineages focus deeply on the menstruation, referring to it as a woman’s moon time. Stories of women gathering together at this time in a “red tent” to enter the mysteries of the feminine invoke images of a time in which to bleed was to enter a time of wisdom and intuition.

Ekhart Tolle, modern day enlightened speaker and author, speaks of how women have an opportunity once a month to awaken, through entering the collective female pain body that is accessible to them prior to and during their bleeding days.

Some shamanic paths suggest that women have an opportunity men do not have, to enter the mysteries of the underworld each month as they bleed. Men, they suggests, can only access these realms by partaking of the poison path, herbs and plants that induce deep altered states. A woman does not require such substances if she knows how to use her moon time wisely.

So, with such contrasting points of view, how is a woman to view her moon time?

One aspect of the moon time that all of the above opinions appear to agree upon is that this time is a time in which increased pain may be experienced. It is well-known that many women experience physical pain, and there is also increasing evidence of emotional pain and increased psychotic episodes. Is pain, however, a valid reason to dismiss and attempt to overcome the period? Or is there perhaps another way to approach the pain itself?

Pain. Most of us try to avoid it, suppress it, or run from it. But once we enter the path of healing and awakening, we begin to see that to cast off pain and run to pleasure is to increase suffering. Pain is not the same as suffering. Suffering is a result of the reaction to pain, not a direct consequence of pain itself. By changing the way we react to pain we can actually end suffering. We cannot end pain, it is part of life. But we can end suffering.

Suffering is a quality of the mind…it is not a physical phenomenon. Think of a time you were ill and suffered. The suffering was in the mind…it may have been resistance “Oh no I can’t be ill…I have so much to do!” Or perhaps fear “Oh my god, what’s wrong with me? Perhaps I’m going to die!”…but look closely…it is a reaction to the illness, not a quality of the illness itself.

It is this kind of reaction and resistance that uses up a lot of energy. It is literally exhausting as the mind fights reality; fights what is.

So pain, any kind of pain, brings us a wonderful opportunity…the opportunity to surrender the mind to what is. So you have a little fever and a headache. Are you going to be angry that you are missing the party you wanted to go to, or fearful that you may have a life-threatening disease? Or can you simply observe what is, calmly do whatever you may need to support yourself (usually water and sleep are required for most situations) and stay present to your situation?

One could define healing as when pain is met with consciousness.
Think of a time when you poured out your troubles to someone who listened with pure consciousness…you feel better immediately. Or maybe a time when you took physical pain to a healer who stayed present with your pain, maybe guided you to breathe into it and to be present with it also. Something amazing happens in such simplicity…healing.

To put this in Ekhart Tolle’s language, pain bodies are just patterns of pain that are needing to be met by conscious awareness. So long as they are not, they will be passed on from generation to generation.

So, back to menstruation, rather than seeing this as a time of great pain and suffering to be overcome, we could consider it an opportunity for women to bring conscious awareness to pain they may be carrying. Tolle says that at this time of the month a woman access the collective female pain body…what does that mean? He is referring to the carrying of pain that is larger than one’s personal pain…the pain of all women, of all generations.

That sounds heavy…why would one want to meet that? Because if we do not meet it with consciousness then it is not healed, and we continue to carry it, often unconscously.

Many women are completely cut off from this pain…taking the contraceptive pill appears to cut women from this, as does taking pain killers over the menstrual time. By denying pain using chemicals, though a woman does not feel the pain, she cuts herself off from her depth and from connection to “the goddess”…earth as the root of all femininity. It creates the Barbie-doll effect: superficial women.

Other women feel pain, but wallow in the victim role. They get caught up in the stream of sensation, identifying completely with pain and with experience. This leads to a mantra of “poor me” and endless suffering and complaining. No wonder many men suggest women take pain killers or other invasive methods!

So denial is one approach, creating Barbie dolls; over-identification is another approach, creating victims. But to transcend these two approaches is to meet pain together with conscious awareness, or witness.

The sensations are moon time can be overwhelming for some women. Therefore it begins to make sense to take oneself away from the world, certainly away from men, and to retreat to one’s red tent. Here one can stay present to witness what arises during this time. To completely retreat at moon time means no interactions, no computer or phone, no TV or movies…just being present to the arising sensations.

Certainly such an approach is a whole different ball game to the other two options. Once one has surrendered to the experience, many different things can happen. Some women experience a sense of suction into the black hole of the universe, the source of all creation seems to be folding everything back inside itself. It can feel like a total self-annihilation…one’s entire sense of self being deconstructed. There can be an edge of chaos, and to surrender feels to be falling down an endless hole, like Alice in Wonderland.
And perhaps this is why Tolle says there is an opportunity every month for a woman’s enlightenment. For to experience one’s own death in this way, to feel one’s self falling apart completely, is to find out who one really is…what is one’s true nature.

It can be like returning to the source. In Tao terminology this would be to fall into the Yin. Sometimes a woman’s body at her moon time feels as if it is pulling her down to the earth…she feels heavy, and the best posture is to squat with the yoni close to the earth. She wants to lie down in darkness and stillness…all qualities of the Yin.

Is this gravitational pull losing energy? It may look like it from a first glance…she is lying down, she looks tired. But actually could it be just the body’s wise way to recharge her from the source of all lifeforce energy? If a woman surrenders to this gravitational pull then she will emerge post-moon time completely refreshed. We could see this sinking to the earth similar to a coil that is being squeezed…it fills with potential energy ready to spring back. Likewise if a woman takes at least one day of her moon time to rest in this way, she can recharge herself for the rest of the month.

Something similar happens before childbirth…in shiatsu it is known as the water phase (the most yin element). The woman’s legs may become heavy and her lower back aches as it is pulled down towards earth. She can only relieve it by squatting…which is an energetically ideal position at this time. The earth chi fills her body and when there is sufficient chi inside her she moves into the wood phase and begins the contractions.

So next time you feel an achy lower back before your moon time, instead of reaching for a pain killer, go out into nature and squat down. Spiral your tailbone over the earth; anti-clockwise to draw earth chi up and clockwise to empty out. Let your sacrum breathe the earth chi up into it. Notice what feels good…find out for yourself.

Some Tantric anti-menstrual arguments would say that the moon blood contains many vital nutrients. The questions is, to we need to cling to our nutrients? Mother earth gives us freely of her vegetables, grains and fruits. She does not hold them fast to her trees and refuse to let them go, even though they contain vital nutrients.

By using a moon-cup to catch your blood, you can pour it back into the earth, giving thanks to Nature who has fed you, and giving some of your body back to her in exchange. You can even pour the blood under a fruit tree or other source of nourishment and contemplate how your vital nutrients return to the cycle of life and nature. Just as when we die if we were buried in the earth, we would decay and become nourishment for the soil, so too with our blood. Consciously taking part in this recycling helps to remind us that we are part of a bigger system, more than just the individual. So do not be mean with your energy, clinging to it as if you are fighting to survive. Giving back to the earth once a month is a beautiful offering to make.

A more radical option is to drink one’s own moon blood to recycle the nutritients and ojas/jing (vitality energy) into the body.

Ultimately Tantra and Tao ancient texts talk about the complete cessation of the moon blood as the ultimate attainment for a woman. This attainment is very mysterious and cannot necessary be understood by the new comer to these arts. There are women who have experienced extreme orgasmic states when “pulling up” their moon blood using special tantric sublimation techniques. Other report that the blood naturally ceases during periods of retreat, silence or meditation. Of course the ultimate aim may have been utilized by Taoist nuns and Tantric priestesses, who could live under very special conditions.

 

Thus it could be wise to consider the ultimate destination, and yet also stay present to the journey itself. Before slaying the red dragon, the first step may be to reclaim the red dragon. First bring healing and consciousness to this time of the month, let it lead you into a deeper awareness of your own sexuality and femininity. Then you will find that when the time is right you will begin to feel more inclined to sublimate the blood. Many women experience that on the journey of healing, their blood becomes lighter and the bleeding times shorter anyway, so sublimation can start happening as a natural result of purification. Keep in balance the journey and the destination, so that you do not start fighting against your moon-time or subconsciously making it wrong. Accept it, know it, purify it, and if and when the time is right you can sublimate it. Ride the red dragon all the way up into the Heavens!

 

 

copyright © Shashi Solluna 2011. all rights reserved.

Invitation from Shakti to Shiva

O Divine Masculine

I love you and I love your desire to open me

I truly want to receive your gift

Your divine penetration

But I ask for one thing:

In order for my true shakti to come and play for you

For my magical yin energy to dance with you

I ask first for your presence

Please hold me

Hold me in your presence

Hold me in your arms

Hold me with your body

And wait…

Drop all goal, drop all needing to do

And wait…

Simply observe and be, for she (this magical energy of Shakti)

will in time, in her own time,

Begin to awaken

Once she feels the steadiness

The unwavering quality of your being

She will feel safe

And she will begin to emerge from her deep hiding place

She will begin to dance for you

And O beloved Shiva

I promise you, you have never seen a dance so sweet!

And she will open to you

And O Shiva, you have never seen an opening so magical!

She will draw you in

O Shiva you have never felt an invitation so divine!

Then, and only then, my beloved,

I invite your penetration

Your instinct, your awesome instinct

To make love to me

Let your Shiva dance with my Shakti!

We are only the observers

Surrendered to our own bodies

Surrendered to this incredible energy

Watching the divine dance

And dying into the bliss

Of such totality.

This is my invitation to you

Your beloved Shakti

Creation Myth

Once upon a time there was a huge endless sky that was the size of eternity. He was boundless and had no edges, made of pure Nothingness. And he was pure unchanging consciousness, Heaven.

There also was a vast earth that was made of form.  She was concocted of edges and boundaries, twists and turns, rises and falls. Every texture possible existed in this earth, for she was everythingness.

One day, as Earth gazed up into the vastness of Heaven, she realized that he could not know himself, for he was pure unchanging consciousness. “What if I offered myself to him, to be his mirror? If he were to feel into me, to dance with me and merge with me, then he should know himself through me.”

So she laid beneath him, showing her undulating hills and curves, her deep waters and mysterious caves. And he was captivated by this vision of beauty. He was mystified by this absolute opposite. As nothingness, he peered at this everythingness in wonder. As empty space and pure silence he was not sure about this vision before him, for she was full of stuff, so very full. And so many sounds emanated from her…wind in the trees and gushing waterfalls, rumbling volcanoes and gurgling brooks. Why would he want to leave his peace for all of that? And yet, he was deeply intrigued.

As he penetrated her with his presence, she began to respond. His very attention created a deep rumbling of life force deep within her soils. She felt the plates of her very form begin to shift as he gazed upon her, and deep cavernous places began to open up within her. Waters began to trickle from crevices previously unseen.  As She changed before him, this captured his interest even further…he was being drawn into the world of form.

What a mystery she was. Suddenly he longed to touch her, to know her…he who was nothingness suddenly felt the first twinges of desire….a desire to experience.

And when his desire was born, his gaze was no longer empty presence, but suddenly burned hot with fire. It became the sun, shining down on her curves. The more his desire burned, the more life began to emerge through her. Plants, flowers and trees sprang into form under his gaze. But the most radical response came from her deep cool waters , which slowly but surely began to stir under his fiery watch.

And then something magical happened…her waters changed form altogether! From a cool dark liquid, her waters began to vibrate higher and higher and rise up towards the Sky as a mist! In order to merge with the Sky himself, the water had to transform itself out of form and into formlessness, and just for a moment the water dissolved into the great eternal Sky completely. It was pure magic and just for a brief time Earth found she could lose herself, lose her form, and become nothingness.

However, after some time, the energy would shift again, and Sky would release her back to herself. Letting her fall as rain, he caressed the Earth, sometimes softly and sometimes penetrating her hard. Sometimes he teased her with a gentle pitter-patter and other times he electrified her with huge electric storms, thunder and lightning thrusting into her, which shook her whole existence. And she loved it all!

And this is how Father Sky and Mother Earth began to make love with each other. Slowly they began to know themselves through each other. He would be captivated by her beauty and begin to see himself through the mirror of her form. She would rise up in ecstasy, dissolving her waters into him, and know herself as emptiness. And then as he penetrated her they merged into one…he experienced himself entering her, and she experienced herself being entered by him. In these moments they could not tell where one ended and the other began…

Often electricity sparked between them, and life was created. She gave each life a form, and he animated the form with spirit. When each piece of life had completed its journey, its form would disintegrate back into Earth, and its spirit rose back to the Sky. It was an ongoing dance.

The Earth grew abundant. Lush foliage sprouted all over and she became a juicy paradise.

Father Sky and Mother Earth so enjoyed to make love together that they decided to make creatures in their form that could also enjoy to make love. They filled the Earth with creatures of all shapes and sizes. Some were created in the image of Mother Earth…she gave them deep cavernous places filled with lush waters, which could cascade into waterfalls. Other were created in the image of father Sky…he gave them penetrating wands that could produce  spray of fluid like the rain, and create a force as powerful as thunder and lightning.

These creatures were attracted to each other, just as Sky and Earth were attracted, and they would spend much of their days seeking out the other. As they made love, so they created more abundance, for the force of attraction was powerful and creative. As Earth sprouted trees and bushes, so did the Earth-like creatures sprout new life, in the process of birthing.

Earth became a paradise full of lush plants, magical waters, stunning birds, and all creatures great and small. Father Sky and Mother Earth looked at their creations and were happy.

who’s responsibility is it?

connection

Something that is interesting in sexual connection is the sense of responsibility that is often present. Often this is directed to pleasure, or to the “goal” of a peak orgasm. One common responsibility is to try to give our lover pleasure or to give them an orgasm. Or the converse intention can exist….trying to gain one’s own pleasure or orgasm out of an encounter.

The trouble with these two approaches comes when there is any sense of disconnect….if I give up my own pleasure to try to give you pleasure, then there will be disconnect between us. Or if I am not interested at all in your experience and am just there to have my own orgasm, there is also disconnection between us. I am just masturbating together with you, rather than making love with you!

Trying in itself can be a huge block! Trying often stops things from happening, because we are 100% active and there is no possibility to receive. A large portion of the ancient Taoist oracle, the i ching, is dedicated to grasping when to act (yang) and when to receive (yin), and more importantly, how to let these two dance together.

It can come to the point in which one or both of the lovers are trying so hard to make something happen, that there is no space for magic to unfold. The whole sexual act becomes too yang, too controlled. Without some space for surrender, no deep magic can occur, and certainly no transcendence. At best there will be a relief at the end.

I met a lover once who went to another extreme…he felt that each was responsible for their own pleasure and so he would encourage his lover to self-pleasure whilst he self-pleasured and then come together at some point for penetration. The result was again that a certain connection was missing. There were two separate energies doing their own thing, rather than two energies coming together in divine union.

It is indeed important that we can take responsibility for our own pleasure…that alone we can self-pleasure and learn of our bodies, our pleasure and our energy. The Taoist solo practices consist of meeting self-pleasure with total awareness, and it is deeply empowering to know one’s own sexual energy. However, solo practices are preparation, but they are not for union itself.

Coming together with a beloved is not the same as two people self-pleasuring at the same time. There is now the opportunity for connection, for two energies to meet and mingle and dance together; to energetically co-create something greater than one could create alone. And a big question is how to allow for divine union without trying too hard? How do we drop trying without becoming passive?

A lot of Tantra is about making space. We use ritual to create a space between lovers. We create a beautiful physical space for meeting with our lovers. We may use a simple tool such a breathwork to make the space for energy to move. The actual magic is received; it is not actively made to happen. We may light candle, bow in Namaste to our lover, sit in yab-yum posture together and begin to breathe together…but those actions are only to make space. The space is then filled with whatever happens, beyond our control or planning. It will spontaneously arise, uniquely between two people and uniquely in each situation. If it could all be planned out to detail, making love would certainly not be so fun!

Tantra is quite mindful of creating space (and these spaces do not have to be heavy and serious; they can also be playful and fun). When you look at the popular social scenes, a lot of it is about creating the space for experience to happen: bars, dancing, sexy clothes, low lights…all of these have evolved to create space for potential connection, possibly leading to sexual union! Many tantricas simply do this with strong intention and consciousness.

Which leads onto the subject of intention, closely aligned with taking responsibility. Intention is a non-invasive form of yang. It is about setting direction, but then surrendering to receive what comes. If someone is absolutely fixed on the idea of having an orgasm in a certain way, then that is excessively yang. If however, the intention is set for opening oneself and one’s beloved, then there is still plenty of space to allow for what arises in the moment and for what is naturally unfolding.

A great way to explore responsibility is to set up different scenarios with one’s lover. A simple, but profound, session is for one person to completely receive and one to give, or to direct the energy. In this you may discover that you find is easier to give than to receive or vice versa.

You may also notice subtleties, such as trying too hard, or being too passive when you are the giver. Perhaps you lose connection with yourself when you pleasure a partner, feeling disconnected, or even resentful. Perhaps you are afraid of “failure”, and so stay passive.

As a receiver you may find it hard to surrender. Maybe you want to tell them what to do (a form of staying in control). Or maybe you suffer through discomfort without letting them know. Do you fake your pleasure at all? Do you tense up? What happens to your breathing?

Because these sessions can bring up a lot of things, it can be a good idea to “hold” them as a session and not just as love-making. It is powerful to sit together first, to bow in Namaste, and then one by one to speak you intention, fears and boundaries about the session. Afterwards there can be a space for sharing, though it is important to be very sensitive.

Example of creating the space together:

The couple, sitting on cushions on their bed facing each other, bow in Namaste

Giver:

  • my intention is to explore your body, to feel deeply into you and to feel how energy moves through you in response to my touch
  • The fears that arise are that I won’t do it “right”, that I may hurt you, or that I may try too hard. I fear feeling rejected if it does not pleasure you.
  • My boundaries are that I want to give a space of an hour to this session, but I cannot go beyond 10pm as I have an early start. I can show up and be completely present within that hour however.

Receiver:

  • My intention is to surrender completely and to receive your touch and let the energy flow
  • My fear is that I won’t be able to let go. I fear that my body may not open.
  • I have a boundary around my clitoris being over stimulated as it can get very sensitive. I request that you touch me gently at first and give me time to open.  I have a boundary around breathing…if my breathing becomes strained, then I ask you to hold still and stay present with me until I relax again.

This is just an idea of what it may look like, through of course it will be unique to each situation!

It is important for the receiver to speak their boundaries completely and clearly before the session. If one waits until the partner crosses a boundary, you then make them “wrong” and this can have the effect of them pulling away because they feel rejected. It is a very sensitive area, and so rather than telling someone off, it is much much better to speak your boundaries first. This is why it is essential to know your own body and energy before connecting with someone else. Once a session begins, then you can relax completely because you have already shown your boundaries, so now you can relax and enjoy.

Take care when sharing afterwards to speak of your own experience and not make your partner wrong. “I notice I am tense and having difficulty letting go” instead of “you are not making me relaxed”. Again this is a matter of responsibility, and not making our experience our partner’s responsibility. Most likely, if we do not relax during a session, we are trying too hard or too attached to a fixed outcome.

This kind of held session can really help us to discover so many aspects of the interplay of yin and yang. If we are stuck in just one (maybe we give easily but cannot receive) then these two forces cannot play freely during love making. If both partners can allow both flows of energy, then this stops the whole love making from becoming one partner’s responsibility.

Ultimately the sense of responsibility can completely dissolve away, making a dance with no dancer. If a couple make it their intention to meet, to connect, on the deepest level, then the energy flows by itself. There is no doer, and no-one being done! Instead of using our yang, our action, to try to make something happen, we use our yang to make a space, to create connection which then allows for happening.

Our yang, our inner masculine, then becomes about showing up and holding space. Our yin, our inner feminine, becomes about surrendering and receiving. The yang builds the container. The yin fills it. And ultimately the yin and the yang dissolve into the space beyond duality. There is no-one there anymore to be responsible…only two people in deep surrender to the mystery; the Divine playing through itself. Love making is then a divine unfolding, total bliss, an act of worship of what Is. The paradox is that we cannot make this happen by volition, for it is when we get out of the way that we are graced.

Ashamed of Living Fully?

It seems to me that many people are ashamed of living fully. Children just live whatever moves through them, tears, giggles, screams, silence. But soon the adults put a stop to any emotions that they themselves cannot handle. Think about when you’re trying to stop a child expressing some emotion…is it because you are not comfortable with that emotion in yourself? Is it that you are ashamed of it?

I look around and I see people closed down, tight, false, restricted..all social airs and graces, so space for any real feeling to move through. Stiff upper lip and all that…too cool to cry. Then I see the people who let go unconsciously, with drugs and alcohol to facilitate emotions, but no-one is present within to hold space for these emotions. What is gained? It seems to create even more separation; the separation of consciousness and feeling. I see those who escape life by meditating off in their proverbial cave, and claiming to be unattached to life. And when mama dies they have the nerve to say “I am not attached…it is just form. Nothing is eternal” because they don’t have the openness of heart to allow the tears to flow. Have they chosen enlightenment at the expense of their humanity? And is it worth it? Surely consciousness and life can be integrated.

Occasionally I see someone who lives; who allows all of life to be felt as it passes through. A person who is present with their own flow of feeling…a true meeting of shiva consciousness with shakti flow. I meet people who will show up for anything…my pain, your pain, my joy, your joy. There are people who stay present no matter what arises, and breathe it all in, let it all move through and taste it all as it passes by. Not just presence, but compassion. Not just seeing, but living.

But most people I see are too “cool” (or too “enlightened”) to let themselves go into feeling, or too unconscious to stay present as the emotions flow. Where did this ridiculous shame come from? And is it really serving anyone? Isn’t it time to get real? Isn’t it time for consciousness to fully embrace life? What have we got to lose by shamelessly living life in totality?

What is Orgasm for?

The big O…subject of much talk and speculation; the goal of many social behaviours; topic of books, annuals, how-to’s…but just what is this endless drive towards orgasm for? What does it bring us, how does it enrich our life; indeed, does it enrich it at all, or is it just another hopeless addiction?

One experience of orgasm is a release, a relief. This could be seen as the more yang, or masculine aspect. But what exactly is it we are releasing? Tension and stress, we may say…and yet a lot of the tension that we release in orgasm we build up exactly prior to the release.

So we build up a big ball of tension in order simply to release it!! Why do we do that? It is not so different from making our way up a steep mountain only to whizz down it on skis. The joy of the down-hill release is worth all of the effort of climbing up the mountain. Just those brief moments of letting go are worth all of the build up.

The release of tension aspect of orgasm can be seen as the yang or masculine part of our sexuality (in both men and women). The more yin, or feminine aspect is to surrender to pleasure.

Rather than focusing on simply releasing the energy, what if we allowed that energy to flow right into our bodies? What if we relaxed the tension in our bodies; what if we let go of the contractions that we create in response to the sexual energy? What if we drop the goal of release and melt into the experience as it happens, feel the energy as it moves? What if we sink into that pleasure so totally that we are entirely engulfed by it? Falling into the experience as it happens can result in such absorption that there is no goal whatsoever.

There is no right or wrong way. You could look at Sexual Arts as invitations… invitations to explore this mystery in new ways. If we tend to make love in one way, what if we explored the opposite? Sexual Arts are about exploring the “What if…” with consciousness.

And often the explorers along The Way have discovered that when yin and yang come together in some way, in any way, some sort of union occurs. And in that union something called transcendence…a moment beyond the apparent limitations of everyday reality, a moment in which we lose ourselves, move beyond time, beyond belief structures, beyond right and wrong, beyond masculine and feminine, beyond light and dark…

So what if we bring these two aspects of orgasm together? What if energy-build-up-release meets surrender-to-pleasure? What if sexual technique and goal-orientation meets wild, sensuous free spontaneity? What would the marriage if sexuality and sensuality look like?

There is just the possibility that orgasm becomes something greater than our personal goal or our personal pleasure. That it becomes the portal to a profoundly transcendant experience. There is a possibility that orgasm become a prayer; a flood of gratitude running through the body; the flow of The Mystery in our veins, in our meridians. And in becoming that gratitude, we become the prayer, we become pure devotion to what is. No separation between being and doing. No separation between god and human. No separation between me and you.

 

Let my body be a temple

And orgasm my prayer

My goal is to die to the divine

Yet I surrender myself to this moment, this flow of life

In totality

And life meets death, death meets life.

The Mystery.

My sexuality is my worship

And with it, I celebrate the Mystery

The Energetic Flow of Sexual Chi

In Taoism, sexual energy is seen to flow from yin (contracted, innermost) to yang (expanded, outermost) in a continuous cycle, like the seasons.

It’s most yin form, like the deep winter, is potential sexual energy and is like a deep hum in our sexual organs. It is that part of us that brings the impetus to live and to create, a spark of life. Stop right now, close your eyes, breathe into your ovaries or testicles and see if you can find a deep humming vibration, a sense of life force tingling with anticipation. When you find it, smile into it, breathe into it…your unaroused sexual chi.

As this energy begins to move from yin to yang, we may feel desire or arousal. It is like the seeds beginning to sprout! Spring time, excitement, energy building. If it continues to expand it may reach full expansion, or yang…this may be the energy expansion known as orgasm, or perhaps a non-sexual peak such as joy, ecstasy or bliss. This is like a full, expansive summer day.

The energy then flows back down towards yin, and it begins to contract again. Just as in autumn when the leaves begin to fall, this is a time for releasing excess energy (grounding it) and gathering in what is valuable to us. After all, what is a peak experience for? What can we gain from each expansive experience and how can we integrate that into our everyday life? Autumn energy teaches us about harvesting the value from each experience and letting go of what we no longer need.

This flow of energy can be experienced and known on a deeper level through practicing a certain type of meditation: sexual qigong. “Qigong” means “energy work”, or working with your energy. There are many many forms of qigong, and you could apply this name to any situation in which you are consciously aware of your energy flow.

In the Taoist Sexual Arts there is a meditation practice known as the “microcosmic orbit”. The name refers to a circuit of energy flow through some of the body’s main meridians, or energy channels. Quite simply, the energy flows up the spine and down the front of the body. A key to this flow is to place the tongue on the roof of the mouth, which acts as a bridge to help the energy complete it’s downward flow. You can experience this flow in a general way, and also connect into each point along the channels. Both practices are helpful.

  • The root of the sexual energy, the sexual organs and perineum, correspond to the yin (winter, night time, dark moon) and the sexual energy lies dormant there like a coiled snake waiting to awaken, or a seed waiting to sprout. The energy connects down to the pulse of life in mother earth.
  • The energy flowing up the spine is like the shoots of spring, the snake awakening and uncoiling. It is when we feel aliveness as desire and arousal.
  • When energy reaches the topmost part of the orbit, the crown, it can touch the eternal skies above. When energy flows through this point we can experience almost lifting up above our everyday experience and limitations. The experience is limitless, ecstatic and for many people divine.
  • As energy flows down the front channel, especially following a very ecstatic experience, we feel that we are receiving blessings. It can be a feeling of gratitude and bliss.

I like to teach this practice not as something to be busy trying to do during lovemaking (!!!), but as a meditation practice to do alone in order to penetrate your own sexual energy with consciousness. This is an inner divine union, in which your own shakti (the sexual energy) unites with your own shiva (your witness conciousness).

The benefits of this meditation:

  • you will tune into your sexual energy, even in its potential form, and thus discover where it comes from and how it moves
  • you will learn a lot about the nature of desire and energy flow
  • you will heal parts of your being where energy has previously been “stuck”…quite simply when we flood the light of consciousness into a part of our being that we have previously cut off, healing happens!
  • you will open the pathways and channels for energy to flow upwards into your body (a tendency is to discharge sexual energy down into the earth without ever lifting it up), up through the different chakras and thus experience “from sex to super-consciousness”.
  • the amount of Shakti you can handle (sexual energy) gradually increases (yes, that means you can handle bigger and bigger orgasmic experiences)
  • the presence of your own Shiva consciousness also increases, as you are increasing the “capacity” of your presence.

It is a form of inner divine union, using your own Shakti/energy and your own Shiva/consciousness. Later on, you may choose to play with a beloved, and you may polarize…one bringing more Shiva, one bringing more Shakti (more on that later!).

The best way to learn this meditation is from a practitioner or facilitator, as trying to learn it from a book tends to be too technique-y! Another person can give you a transmission. You will know this has happened if you feel the aliveness of the energy flow. Having said this, some people do of course discover this for themselves, without any assistance! However, I have come across many people in my years of teaching who have struggled over a book and diagrams and tried to imagine the flow, but not really experienced it.

My passion is to teach the sexual arts close to nature, using the power of natural life force energy to help us reconnect to the life force energy within our own bodies. This helps us to remember that sexual energy is not just a personal energy, just there for our own pleasure. It is something much greater, and opening to this possibility can give us the opportunity to experience  something truly transcendental (as well as a lot of pleasure!).

copyright © Shashi Solluna 2011. all rights reserved.

The Priestess: a fairy tale

Once upon a time, on an island far far away, there lived a passionate High Priestess and her cat.

She had not always been a priestess. Indeed she had landed on those shores a mere maiden on a path of discovery. A sweet, well-behaved and polite girl, she had touched down on the shores looking for something she had not yet known. Searching for the meaning of life, for depth, for love and for all of the qualities that make life worth living…the young maiden was attracted to this island that seemed somehow so alive.

However, her initiation into the Mystery had all come about, as is oft the case, though misfortune.

Our young heroine had been enjoying living in Paradise for a couple of years. She lived in a simple house with a loving man, had plenty of wonderful people around…from the outside, all should have been well. Yet the young maiden suffered from a deep fear she could not explain. This fear seemed to be eating up inside of her, and would send her into bouts of panic and anxiety for no apparent reason.

All of the security and comfort in which she had been raised she had left far behind her. She had been brought up so very well, without a single comfort missing. Yet somehow life had brought her here, in a place so far from all she knew. Sometimes she wondered if she should give up all of this dream seeking, and go back home to undertake a “normal” life. But part of her soul craved a depth of living she knew would be stifled in that existence. After several years of travelling these far eastern lands, it was as if she had seen too much to ever return to “normality”.

So the young maiden found herself hovering between two existences…between the known and the unknown. And, being on the brink of the unknown, she felt a permanent bubbling of fear in her belly.

She felt her mind landsliding into confusion…did Paradise really exist or was it just an unobtainable dream? Were all the people here chasing impossible dreams, or were the people back at home caught in a deep slumber? Somehow she had to know the answers to these questions.

Afraid of the possible answers, the young maiden avoided looking into these issues fully until one day when she received a shocking piece of news.

Whilst going to the medicine man for a routine check, she was informed that she had a growth inside her body, near her precious female sexual organ, her ovary. Stunned and shocked, the maiden found herself in tears. Tears continued to flow like a never-ending cascade, and soon she felt waves of an emotion hitherto unfamiliar to her: she felt angry. More than that, she felt rage.

Now, this maiden had been raised to be very sweet and very polite indeed. Well-spoken, never dropping so much as an h and annunciating each word with Queen’s English precision… the maiden had been raised to know the virtues of being “good”. This did not include expressing the more vulgar emotions such as anger. She was known by her friends as someone who would never ever swear in a crisis.

Yet, upon receiving the news, our maiden found herself screaming and howling in pain, a pain that felt much larger than her…it was as if she felt the pain of all women of all time. She beat cushions and wailed in agony. Somehow, her hot tears were tumbling down in empathy with all of the women ever suppressed, abused, raped and pillaged, burnt at the stake. It was deeper even than empathy, it was her pain; it was as if their blood ran in her veins. She felt as though all of the stifled screams of her motherline suddenly wanted to push their way through her body, here and now, and be heard.

Now on a rational level (for that co-existed with these intense sensations) this was all completely irrational. The maiden had never herself been subject to any sort of abuse. Successful in a “man’s world”, our heroine had achieved many accolades of achievement, and really felt she had been accepted. In fact, she had often scorned the women who ranted on about female suffering, and yet here she was weeping the pain of the female collective. What was going on?

Yet these feelings could not be denied; could not be suppressed. And more than that…she now had a solid physical growth undeniably expanding inside her body.

The medicine man had given her three months before he would open her up and operate upon her, and so she decided to go on the journey of a lifetime: to enter the Unknown, and find out what laid within.

So the maiden found herself a simple dwelling deep deep in the jungle, without even a sea view, where she planned to spend the next three months journeying inwards until she found out what her own mystery held.

For the next few months, the maiden lived in the company of herself and the creatures of the jungle. Though she became used to the sounds, she never quite knew what kinds of animals were making them. Sometimes she would sight creatures that looked like nothing she had ever seen before…crawling creatures with a million spikes along their backs, huge lizards that looked like little crocodiles, spiders the size of her hand with gold sparkles on their backs, and once she saw a snake so large that she could not see the whole body from end to end as it slid through the undergrowth.

At night she would lie and give herself healing by placing her hands over her body, resting across her sexual area. As she tuned in, she realized that she really hadn’t ever given this part of herself much attention, somehow vaguely aware that it existed. Perhaps she had only really paid attention to her sexuality when she was with a lover. To place her hands here now and breathe deeply into her sexual organs, she slowly became aware that they were there all of the time, and she had never really bothered to investigate.

Thus began a new relationship in her life…a relationship with herself. Her ovaries, her womb, her vagina…these parts of her being which had the potential to create life. Perhaps they were connected to all aspects of her creativity.

She thought back over her childhood; although she had always loved singing, music, dance and creativity, she had really put these things aside to focus on what was really important: things like maths, science, getting good grades and being an achiever. The message was loud and clear: creative things were all very good and well, but they certainly were not important. They were absolutely second class. They would never make you money or help you do well in life. Unless one was a complete professional (and she has not even reached grade 3 on the piano, because she preferred just to play for fun), there was no point is wasting one’s time on these areas.

And in seeing this message that dwelled within her, she burst into tears. She cried for the rejected parts of her own being. For the artist, the musician and the dancer she had judged and tossed aside. She cried at the pain of the inner voice that had declared science to be the master over the lesser cousin of art. The smugness every time she had received high grades, the time she became a physics scholar, won the economics prize, got a place into Oxford.

In spite of all of these “achievements” there was an emptiness to her life. An aching heart, a feeling of deadness that she could not shake off. Now as she delved into her sexual mysteries she found that her creative center was grieving the losses. She had aborted the creative child within, and now is called to be rebirthed.

The fears she had been experiencing somehow were intensifying. She knew not what she was afraid of, only that the fear was such that it could not be ignored. She decided to do exactly what she had avoided her whole life; instead of doing everything in her power to try to get rid of these feelings, she would create the situation to intensify them and thus enter them completely.

So, one night when the moon was dark and the skies a dense blackness, she laid in a hammock between two trees in the thick jungle. She blew out her solitary candle and found herself in a wilderness so much vaster than anything she had ever known before. The fear that she had been battling to keep at bay suddenly engulfed her.

Fear rippled up through her body like a tidal wave. She watched how much she longed to jump up and run away, run to safety. However, she knew that if she did not meet it, it would forever be running just behind her. It was time to turn around and look fear squarely in the eye.

So she inhaled right into the center of this fear. Her breath had never felt so alive, as if sparking with electricity. Her body was almost shaking with an intense vibration and she could feel her breath entering her body like an icy wind. She felt her fear unfolding from a tight nugget that had been tightly clenched in the depths of her belly, opening out into waves of aliveness almost too much for her to bear. Was this what she had been avoiding? An intense aliveness?

She brought her awareness right down into her sexual center, which somehow seemed to be the epicentre of the quake. She began to breathe into her ovaries and into her womb, as if they themselves were lungs. They seemed to hungrily devour the breath that she brought there as if they had been lying there, waiting for this opportunity of awakening. The tears that now flowed were tears of relief, as if she had come home to a forgotten place.

She laid for some time in this terrifying and yet exhilarating state, feeling more alive than she had ever known was possible. The jungle around her, once a frightening strangeness, a separate thing to be feared, now felt like an extension of her own body. The throb of cicadas was echoing the pulse of her heart, the tree roots led all the way down to the roots of her own existence, the vast skies opened her soul to its source. She felt as if the whole of nature was vibrating orgasmically, her body pulsing within it.

Instead of feeling alone in a forest, she felt more connected to life than she had ever known before. Her sense of separate identity was blurred into the darkness around her. She felt held in the arms of a great nurturing being, like a mother. For the nature around her was undeniably alive, a living being. Was this what they meant when they talked of the Great Goddess? In this moment she was truly a child of the Great Mother, feeling the relief to no longer be alone struggling to find her place in a hostile world.

She laid in the midnight jungle, in a state of bliss perhaps unknown since leaving the womb of her own mother. Finally she was released from the threat of fear, a fear that had called her home. She gently fell into a deep sleep, harmonious with the rhythm of the forest.

When she awakened, she felt a moisture between her legs and found that she was bleeding. Somehow she knew this was no ordinary blood…she knew that she was releasing the growth that had made its place within her body. She felt the change, she felt that her ovary was now free, and was astounded at the miracle of her own body.

She decided then and there that she would never become strangers with her sacred temple ever again. She would learn what served her body, what nourished it, what brought it alive. She would listen to unpleasant emotions and see where they led her, rather than trying to run from them or push them away. She would make space in her life for creativity, for all of the things that had no obvious “use” but were simply enjoyable in and of themselves. But most of all, she would honour the great body of earth that she lived upon, staying as close as she could to the wild nature that is her very own nature.

And thus a priestess was born. The maiden became a woman. She lived wild and free, energy and emotions flowing through her as freely as the wild waves upon the shore. Her body became a vessel of ecstasy and aliveness; her being was a true creatrix, breaking through judgements in the name of expression. A passion was born within her as she had never known before. A passion to live, to love and to taste life’s rich flavours. It became her worship to live in this way, her gratitude to the great Mystery shown through drinking it in as deeply as she could.

THE END

copyright © shashi solluna 2011. All rights reserved.

Why study Sexual Energetics?

Tantra, especially the Chinese offshoot known as Taoism, looks at sexuality in terms of energy. What are the advantages of beginning to understand our sexuality in terms of energy?

One huge benefit, is to change our focal point from external to internal.

Most modern cultures teach us to look at sexuality from an external reference point…our sexuality is often defined by our relationships with others, specifically lovers. Many of us are trained not to even recognize our sexuality independently of our sexual relationships. If we are having sex, then we are consider ourselves as sexual. If we are not sexually active, then we may even lose our sexual identity. Surely we can enjoy our sexuality at all times, with or without a lover?

Paths that teach us to tune into our energy bodies and our sexual energy help us to develop a new frame of reference. Energy cannot be destroyed or created, it simple changes form. Therefore, we can connect to our sexual energy even when it is not in the form of passionate desire or full blown orgasm. Tuning into our sexual energy in its yin, unaroused form helps us to know it better in all parts of its cycle.

Another advantage of beginning to see our sexuality as a flow of energy, is the removal of judgement and guilt. Energy is innocent; we can have a direct experience of energy. Whereas behaviours and actions may be judged as good or bad; and indeed a lot of sexual behaviours are judged, creating guilt, suppression and distorted shadow sides.

If we look at energy, if we feel our sexual energy directly, we can begin to bring consciousness to it. So much of sexual behaviour is unconscious, due to the amount of judgement on it in culture. We may hear judgments as children, and then later when it naturally arises we may try to push it away. But energy cannot be destroyed, so this only creates unconscious energy forms. Many people have to reduce their consciousness (for example with drugs and alcohol) in order to access their sexual energy, and it becomes cut off from presence.

So by doing practices that tune us into our sexual energy, we begin to meet Shakti (energy) with Shiva (consciousness). As we bring awareness to the flow of sexual energy, this “light” of awareness begins to clear away unconscious patterns and blocks.

Practicing sexual energy meditations also tunes us in to the flow of energy…many people are only aware of sexual energy as a peak orgasm. This makes people goal-oriented in sex, and also misses the delights of the journey! Tuning in to the more subtle layers means that we can become masters of the journey, playing with energy, or better still: surrendering to the energetic flow and letting it carry us along… and not just focused on a release. Once we drop the goal of orgasmic peak, we can move from a discharge orgasm to a full-body orgasm, which can go on for much longer and facilitate a spiritual experience (more on that later!).

There are so many other advantages from tuning into sexual energy…we can see what is going on in different social interactions. Are we connecting to others through the sexual center only, or is the heart center flowing but the sexual center blocked? We can begin to see when we are blocking our own energy or leaking it out.  We can also choose what to do with our energy…do we want to share it, or perhaps circulate it and come back to our center, or maybe we want to ground it into the earth. Sexual energy is such a powerful energy that it is far more useful to be able to work with it than to be unconsciously controlled by it!

Only by choosing to turn inwards and to meditate upon this life-giving energy can we begin to bring consciousness to it. This awareness of sexual fire can completely transform our experience of sexual union, opening us to the magic of Tantra.

“At the start of sexual union Keep attentive on the fire in the beginning, And so continuing, Avoid the embers in the end.” Vigyan Bhairav Tantra

Practice: Tune in to your sexual energy

  1. Sitting on the floor, feel down below your body into the earth. See if you can sense it’s vibration…it is alive and humming with lifeforce.
  2. Breath up from the earth through your perineum and into your sexual organs. Men feel into your testicles and women into your ovaries.
  3. Picture the organs and smile at them.
  4. Feel deep within them and feel for a vibration, a hum, a tingling of energy…it is the feeling of something just waiting to happen. Subtle, but alive.
  5. Once you find it, smile to that energy…say yes to that lifeforce…and breathe into it. Feel it pulsing with your breath. Spend some time with it.
  6. After some time we will begin to let it flow around the whole body:
  7. Inhale down the soft front-side of your body into your sexual organs, and as you exhale shoot the energy up your spine to the crown.
  8. Put the tongue on the roof of the mouth and continue this breathing…inhaling down the front to the sexual organs, exhaling up to the crown. You may even start to feel the chi at your crown, like a light buzzing feeling.
  9. After a few circulations, inhale to the belly. Put your hands here and spiral the chi around…as if you have just eaten a pot of honey and your are stirring it into your tummy!
  10. Let your spirals grown bigger, then reverse direction, like water going down a plug hole, let the chi condense and gathering into a tiny pin prick point in your belly… the stillpoint.
  11. Rest in meditation at this still point, the witness consciousness.
In this meditation, the sexual energy is shakti (ever-changing) and the stillpoint is Shiva (unchanging). So this practice is a great self-practice to bring one’s own shakti and shiva together, ones inner feminine and masculine. This pathway of sexual energy is called the “Microcosmic Orbit” in the Taoist Sexual Arts.
copyright © shashi solluna 2011. all rights reserved.
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