The Scorpio / Taurus axis invites us to embody our wholeness—which is only ever possible when we quit faking it …
Nobody wants to be a faker—but we do it all the time. The fake smiles, the fake “I’m fine’s,” the faking we’re holding it all together, when inside it feels like part of us is dying. This Taurus Full Moon, can we please make a pact to quit with the faking already, and embody those parts back to life? (If you’re just here for the ritual, it’s at the end of the post. Clue: you’ll need one of these).
Scorpio season is a time for getting REAL. For confronting the raw truths of existence, and the shadow parts we usually work so hard to conceal. When the moon becomes full in the opposite sign of Taurus, it’s shining a torch under the dusty sofa of our psyche. A chance to clean out some of the cobwebs and to prove there are no monsters hiding out there after all, what we find are just the damaged, and therefore “unlovable” parts, we have shamefully been clamoring not to reveal.
Ugh, it’s exhausting, isn’t it? The faking?
I dusted out some of my cobweb/monsters last week, when I wrote about the truth of running a (spiritual) online business (a.k.a. all the ways I’ve tried to monetize The Numinous and failed). It felt risky and whiney and ugly to put it out there, but it had gotten so very heavy I had to get it out of my body. The response, OF COURSE, was a massive out-breath from my readers who are done pretending too (which I’m also guessing is you).
I’m writing this from Women’s Week at Kriplau. My first time attending a retreat here, having been a presenter many times, I opted into a workshop titled The Alchemy of Writing. Sat on my backjack in this morning’s session, knees hugged tight to my chest, I had been longing for this this moment. A much-needed refilling of an inner cup that, in the past 12 months especially, has given so, so much.
Why was it then, that the expectant camaraderie encircling the other women in the room did not feel like it extended to me? How could it be that I felt this insecure as part of the group, opposed to the times I was leading it. Why, having spent the past two years confronting my fear of public speaking head-on, did my heart begin to pummel the interior of my ribcage at the mere idea of raising my hand to speak?
How fitting that our first writing prompt in today’s session was: “A time when I felt one way and acted another.” Holy mama. Also fitting for Scorpio season, here are the first few lines that stumbled out of me in response:
“I knew I was supposed to say ‘yes,’ and so that’s what I told him. ‘Did you come?’ He needed to know for his pride. We were in his parents’ house, chintzy covers on the bed, the reek of skunk weed clinging to the curtains and the shag-pile carpet. There was no doubt in my mind that he’d been picturing this moment—my deflowering—from the moment that we met.”
And so began a six-year stint (the first six years of my sexually active life) when lying on behalf of my body became my basic MO. Looking back, how could this NOT have led to issues with me “using my voice” in other areas of my life (given the fact that our vocal chords and our vaginas are also intimately connected)? Or me feeling like faking it (including the smiles, the ‘I’m fines’, the pretending I’m not hurting inside) was the proper thing to do?
As with my struggles to ask for what my work is worth, I suspect I am not alone in this one. When I recently interviewed sober sexpert Tawny Lara for my Sober Curious podcast about why she quit faking orgasms in sobriety, she explained that quitting drinking had led her down a path of radical, Scorpionic, honesty. Feeling your emotions in the raw, day-in-day-out, will do that to a girl. In a post on the same subject on The Temper, she wrote: “This honesty eventually crept into the bedroom. I was done adding a performative element to sex. The thought of tightening my pelvic floor while gyrating my hips and moaning in pseudo-pleasure just seemed like too much work.”
Because the truth is, faking it is the fastest way to drain us of our precious life force energy. In fact, the effort it takes to maintain even the smallest “white lie” could be used to power whole movements; write books; launch and fuel game-changing enterprises; and radically transform lives. Which means, whatever you’ve got squished under your soul-sofa, know that it is sapping you of your very aliveness. But will you have the courage to shine a torch under there and chase it out for good?
You can practice with the small stuff. No more fake smiles. No more ‘I’m fines.’ Notice, as you shun the fake comfort of “fitting in” in favor of a vulnerable just being, how much more deeply you belong to your body temple, like it was waiting for you to inhabit it fully all along.
And as for your Taurus Full Moon ritual? Simple. Put on some smooth tunes, pull out your crystal dildo, and invite your whole, perfectly imperfect self, to COME HARD back into your body. As you commit to never, ever, faking it again.
Annie Sprinkle christened San Francisco’s Bernal Park hill “the clitoris of America.” Researching my new book, Sex Drive, I knew I had to visit for myself, and so Sprinkle and I met in a local diner for breakfast. After demonstrating her ability to have an “energy orgasm” on the spot (think Meg Ryan’s infamous turn in When Harry Met Sally, but for real), she promised to take me on a Bernal Park “ecosexual” nature walk, where she would show me how to do it too …
An X-rated nature walk By this time, I’m quite keen to get up onto the Clitoris of America and try it all out myself. So off we set on a climb up the hill to Bernal Park and an X-rated nature walk begins. It’s not X-rated because Annie’s going to take her clothes off. The plants are going to be doing much filthier things. “Look at that,” she says, stopping in front of a cherry tree in full bloom. “Flowers are tree genitals. Basically, you’re looking at porn.”
We walk on until the siren call of another tree brings Annie to a halt. “Look at this trunk, it’s like a big penis. Isn’t it beautiful?
Hockey pitch nature walks with Miss Corbett at the convent were never like this. Annie says that I need to find my “E-Spot,” her ecosexy take on G-Spot. (She’s great at coming up with new words). I’m drawn to an exuberant hibiscus flower. “Oh yeah!” she says approvingly in her raunchy porn voice. “Hibiscus stamens!”
I wonder if David Attenborough shows ever give her that Deep Throat feeling. We approach the hibiscus and she says, “You can smell it casually. Or you can imagine this plant is a lover and it wants to give you a gift.”
She smells her new lover, pulls off one of its genitals and sticks it on her third eye. She sticks one on me too. None of this strikes me as stupid or odd. Cornwall isn’t a million miles away from California in terms of country weirdness. My eco or “E-Spot” as she calls it, kicks into action as I notice that a tree we’re passing looks a bit droopy.
“Don’t you think this tree looks a bit sad?” I say.
“It is a little heavy, isn’t it?” she nods.
She knows immediately what to do. “You just need a hug,” she tells the tree enfolding it in a bosomy embrace. “Oh, love you.” I participate in the love-in, realizing only afterwards that I have just hugged a tree in California. This is the sort of thing that people make fun of back at home, but American Stephanie doesn’t care. Annie looks wistfully at the tree then mumbles something about, “I may be projecting…” She slaps the tree’s butt. “You’ll be OK,” she cracks. “Hang on in there.”
It’s fun going on a nature walk with an ex-porn star. She’s not great on the names of flora and fauna, but she does things like saying hi to her favorite Eucalyptus tree. She plucks a leaf, thrusts it under my nose and chuckles, “Sniff that pantie!”
The sap must be rising from the ecosexy nature walk because I soon have a sort of sexual panic attack. I start gabbling about how I want to check out some seedy places in San Francisco and how I really want to get laid and, “you know that feeling when you want to have sex and you’re not having sex and…”
“Stay in the moment,” she puffs as we carry on up the steep road. They’re magic words and I immediately calm down. I think back to my interview with Barbara Carrellas back in New York a month ago. I arrived too early for the interview and the prospect of writing a book about masturbation suddenly overwhelmed me. What the hell was I thinking of?! I wasn’t even sure what I meant! So I just experimented with letting go: dropping into my body, unsticking from the world so that for a few moments I was just snow and boots and crunch. When I came ‘back’ a few seconds later, it felt like a shot of a week of the best sleep ever.
And then suddenly Annie announces that we’ve reached “the urethral sponge” i.e. we’re in Bernal Park but not quite on the clit. My main feeling is that the Clitoris of America has had a bit of a bikini wax. Its green pubic hair is a bit patchy. There’s a lot of uncovered soil. Maybe the dog walkers nobbled it. There are a lot of them. Annie says it’s the drought. It’s been a serious problem in San Francisco. Annie has actually married the main culprit along with a group of ecosexy friends.
“If you think about it, right now the sun is penetrating your pores,” she says in her incantatory broad-from-the-1950s voice. “They’re fucking your whole body.”
When I ask her how she knew the sun wanted to get married, she says, “We can only assume that things respond well to love and appreciation. Like, if you cruise a bunch of girls or guys, you’ll get the message who’s available.”
She and Beth have also married the mountains, the snow, coal and the ocean. I try and impress her by saying, “My favourite drugs are sugar and the sun.” She enthuses, “Oh, I love sugar too,” but adds that she has to lose weight for the filming of her and Beth’s upcoming ecosexy tour. “Saying it’s OK to be fat, it’s the one thing about feminism I don’t agree with.”
By now we’re sitting on the very top of the park, a bumpy grassy area that slopes down with massive views over the city on every side. Looking at the view, it suddenly strikes her that, “Maybe the earth is the clitoris of the universe.” She laughs. “Betty would say, ‘Oh that’s bullshit!’” She tells me that we’ll do the energy orgasm right here.
Meditation + masturbation She describes the technique as similar to something she used to call “medabation,” meaning a combination of masturbation and meditation. But mainly, she says, it’s like learning tennis because, “It’s a technique and at first it’s confusing and you’re like, ‘Woah! How do I hit it and how hard?’” She confides that it took her three years to learn how to do it properly.
I realize that this “energy orgasm” is her take on the heart wank that Barbara Carrellas told me about back in New York. Annie explains that the idea came about when she and Carrellas were investigating more spiritual ideas about orgasm during the AIDS years. “All of us had lovers who got HIV, so we had to figure out how to have safe sex.” They adapted the breath technique from a method taught by a Native American called Harley Swiftdeer. He calls it “Firebreath Orgasm,” but Annie doesn’t “because I didn’t take the very expensive training that initiates you.”
And so my tennis lesson begins. She starts by telling me to, “Say, ‘Yes’ to erotic energy. You have to allow it because it’s there just for the asking.” She points to the tree in the near distance and says that the ideal would be to, “Start feeling sexy and then direct your energy to the tree and see what happens.” She tells me to do some kegels (clenching of the vagina as if you want to stop a stream of pee) and undulating movements of the pelvis. “That’ll stoke the furnace.” After that comes the most important thing of all: the breath.
“You’re really sucking the inhale and relaxing the exhale.” She advises to make noises because that helps shift energy in the body. “The idea is to bring in energy through the feet and end up shooting it out of the top of the head. Fake it til you make it,” she quips in what she tells me is jargon from the porn world.
It’s a great lesson. It reminds me of the Transformational Breathing technique I tried out in my hippie journalism phase with the British teacher Alan Dolan. Basically you breathe quickly in and out, taking in more than usual amounts of oxygen until a wave of euphoria hits you.
And then there I am, lying on a hillside in San Francisco as the woman once dubbed “The Golden Girl of Porn” makes sounds ranging from deep Witches’ Sabbath to mid-range horny-bitch-on-heat to high-pitched damsel-in-distress to glass-shattering Kate Bush on the moors. “Wooo! Woo!”
Listening to the tape afterwards, I do sound a bit stuck in Witches’ Sabbath mode. Clearly I need to work on moving my energy up to more damsel-in-distress mode. Meanwhile, I am in the ludicrous position of lying with my feet towards the top of the hill and my head towards the bottom because I want to face the sun. But something is definitely happening. I get to the state where I forget to worry about what the dog walkers must be thinking of us.
I have a flash of some of the boring-looking dog walkers I’ve seen in Presidio Heights. I want to unzip them and show them some love. Tell them it’s OK. Occasionally I get distracted by the fact that I’m not feeling anything remotely like an orgasm although Annie is now sobbing. Wailing almost. We get in breathing synch. I try and keep up with her her “Ah! Ah!”s until finally she makes a prolonged, “Oh yeeeeeeah!” presumably when the energy passes out of the top of her head.
I open my eyes and the sky is indeed bluer. There is also dog shit on the bottom of my right boot. I think I won’t say this to Annie. She’s clearly having a moment.
“When I masturbate like this, I feel the pain of the world, I really do. The Boko Haram, The Charlie Hebdo shootings. The animals, everything. I become a channel sometimes. I just need to release the pain. It’s like truly connecting. It sounds really strange.”
“No, it doesn’t sound strange …” She’s right that the concept of words becomes shaky after this kind of tennis. I struggle to speak.
“We can’t really experience pleasure on a really grand scale unless we can feel the suffering and the blocks and the disconnect somehow.”
Watching Annie with tears streaming down her face, it strikes me that this is what a modern-day nun looks like. Sending an orgasm to promote peace in Nigeria and Paris isn’t that weird. Christians and Buddhists send off distilled thoughts known as “prayers” to try and alleviate world suffering every day. Yet the kind of energy generated during orgasm is jet fuel compared to the economy petrol that comes from a morning at mass.
Looking to add some spice to your divination practice? Alessandra Calderin gives us a crash course in Sex Tarot 101, and uncovers how you can start casting cards between the sheets …
The Tarot is a mirror and a tool that reflects archetypal imagery that spans the spirals of the human experience. It allows us to connect to ourselves (and our Selves) because we intuitively understand these images. Sexuality is as primal and instinctual in us as the need to eat, sleep and breathe, and so the cards can reflect the ways in which our power, intuition, and connection manifest through our sexuality.
So WTF is a “sex tarot” reading?? There are so many ways to draw cards and create spreads to explore sex and desire! Here are 4 ways to get started …
1// Pull a “desire” spread. Pull cards asking what your subconscious desires are, what might be blocking them, and how to work through that block. The possibilities are endless!
Start with a simple 6 card spread:
Card 1: What is my heart’s desire? Card 2: What is blocking me from fulfilling it? Card 3: What is my deeper unconscious desire? Card 4: What is preventing me from seeing this? Card 5: How can I balance and integrate these desires? Card 6: What can I shed to make space for their fulfillment?
2// Do a sacral chakra reading. Explore the seat of your sexuality by diving into the 4 “sides” of this chakra. The more you look at the pelvis and your desire as linked to your creativity, the more you start feeling how they ebb and flow together, and the more tools you have to work through both.
Card 1: Front of the sacral chakra. How does your sexuality appear to others? What is your exhibition style? Card 2: Right side. How do you manifest sexuality and creativity in the world? Card 3: Back. What experience of your sexuality do you hold onto? Card 4: Left side. How do you receive creative inspiration, the desire of others, and pleasure?
3// Masturbate with the Majors. You can also use Tarot for masturbation and sex magic practices by meditating on the archetypes of the Major Arcana or court cards.
Choose whatever cards are ruled by planets or signs that show up strongly in your birth chart, where the Moon is hanging out, what astro season we’re in, or just pull a Major and start working with it at random. You might even choose one you have trouble with (like when I pulled Justice- I was bummed by how unsexy that card might be on the surface, but there was powerful medicine in that feeling and the resulting meditation!)
Most recently, for the Super Blue Blood Moon in Leo on 1/31 during Aquarius season, I meditated on Strength (because Leo rules it) and The Star (because Aquarius rules). I let those two figures guide me as I touched, explored, played with my hands and my favorite toy (Njoy Pure Wand). As I was getting ready to orgasm, these two images reassured me that my sexuality and desire were a gift, and sacred sources of feminine power.
4// And channel the deck’s sexiest cards to unlock pure magic! I could probably make an argument for the sexual energy of every card, but this is a good place to start. Explore how you feel about these cards and the kind of pleasure they channel, or isolate the pack and draw one as your teacher of the moment.
*She/He pronouns refer to the archetypal genders of masculine and feminine energy. These figures are figuratively gendered, but anatomically genderless.
:: Strength :: In the Thoth, Strength is actually called Lust. Some interpretations say it’s the taming of desire, but I would say it’s more like mastery over desire. Taming connotes that there is too much desire and you need to control it. In this context, I see her as the master of her desire in a world that denies her that power. Your desire becomes sacred fuel the moment you master it.
:: The Empress :: The Empress is receptive. She is how I learned to receive pleasure without having to think about reciprocating in that moment. She allows herself to be fully nourished, filled to the brim with love, pleasure, and affection, but she also rides and caresses like a goddess. She bestows the gift of her mouth upon you and it’s like drinking an unearthly elixir with her kisses and nibbles and expertly executed oral.
:: The Emperor :: The Emperor might be a surprise for this, but as the Empress’s counterpart, he allows her to unleash. He’s like a very good Dom, providing the container for every expression of kink you might wish to explore safely. You want to be tied up, spanked, penetrated in out of the ordinary ways? He reads your body language, pushes the edges, and knows your limits before you even need to utter a safe word. The master of boundaries, he’s here to teach you how to consent so enthusiastically you forget what ambiguity feels like.
:: The Moon :: The Moon represents the wild woman running naked in the woods and howling at the Moon- the deep waters of sexuality and mystery. She is a shapeshifter. A wolf. A mountain lion. She visits you in the dead of night and brings your to orgasm in the dream realm, and when you wake up the memory is hazy but you know something powerful has been touched inside you. She breathes underwater and is as mysterious as the bottom of the sea. You know her without words.
:: The Devil :: The Devil can sometimes deal with a repression of desire, and to me has always had a BDSM vibe to it. I think this one depends on your relationship to that kind of imagery and sexual practice, but as a Capricorn (The Devil is ruled by Capricorn), and a big fan of power play, The Devil can sometimes be a freeing card. Reclaiming the divinity and balance of the shadow, of words like slut, whore, bitch, freak, breaks the chains that bind us to our own fear and repression. It’s a balancing act. The Devil reminds us that there are more layers and sides to it.
:: The Lovers :: The Lovers feels like an obvious one because you have to love all the sides of yourself like a lover before you can love anyone else. Getting there is anything but obvious or easy, though. Use a mirror. Look at yourself. This is the real shit. The deep work. It takes a lot of unraveling and excavation to be able to love your body and yourself just as you are. Your best Lover will look back at you eventually.
:: Queen of Pentacles :: Queen of Pentacles is the master of the home and body. An independent woman, she knows what she likes and moves through the material world with the grace of an angelic ballerina. Queen of Wands is known to be the most sexual queen in the deck, but Queen of Pentacles knows pleasure like no one else. Part earth angel, part water nymph, she creates the primordial mud that those Dead Sea masks get their magic from.
:: Knight of Cups :: Knight of Cups will go down on you first without being asked. Inviting this kind of energy into your bedroom, the person who will massage and caress you slowly, who dreams of drinking you like you’re water in the desert, is clutch in truly sinking into pleasure. Find you a man (or woman or non-binary) who can give it to you good.
:: Page of Wands :: Page of Wands is bursting with potential energy, often creative and sexual. She’s ready and willing to try new toys and discover what she likes. She’s the teen who just discovered her clitoris and hasn’t been told there is something wrong with the amazing feeling that swims through her body when she touches it. She just got her period and is ready to finger paint with her blood. She will make out behind the bleachers and let herself love completely. She writes love songs and sings them without the slightest bit of embarrassment.
:: Ace of Cups :: Ace of Cups is a pure gift of water, love, communication, and intuition. I often see it as an invitation to masturbate with more loving intention. To swim in your waters and to practice accepting the water gifts from elsewhere.
:: 10 of Cups :: 10 of Cups is a literal orgasm. It could be something that feels as good as an orgasm, a self pleasure practice that’s out of this world, or a partner that takes you to the places of rainforest waterfalls and fireworks.
Alessandra is an intuitive healing facilitator, tarot practitioner, yoga teacher, writer, poet, comedienne and performer based in New York. She will be teaching her Tarot Immersive later this month and currently teaches yoga at Three Jewels, focusing her attention on energetic sensitivity and the pelvic floor. Explore her offerings at Boneseed, and follow her on Instagram.
After searching for her lost orgasm in her latest book, Sex Drive, Stephanie Theobald cavorts with fellow Virgo Carine Roitfeld, and discovers why Virgos are sexier than Scorpios …
“Being a Virgo it is all about fantasy. In my head. You know how Virgos are—not so sexual!” As I witnessed former French Vogue editor-turned-stylist, Carine Roitfeld, cavorting with a living latex sex doll in the “Lust” room of her immersive “Widow” series for Veuve Clicquot (theme: The Seven Deadly Sins), I had to step in for an astrological intervention …
Virgo vs. Scorpio: kinky phallic tales & ecstatic soil Being a Virgo myself, I’ve long endured all that crap about how we’re control freaks who only get off on doing housework. I’m used to swiftly shifting the conversation onto my Chinese sign (the much more amorous-sounding Fire Horse). But, these days I’m out and proud.
In my experience, Scorpios are one-trick ponies. Yes, Scorpios are into extreme passion, but that thunder and lightening sexuality burns out fast to leave a brooding, precarious calm. Think kinky dungeon sex, and a very male, genitalia-focused idea of sexuality: the sting in the phallic tail. But, yawn, there’s only one sting.
Meanwhile, the patriarchal propaganda around Virgo is that she’s a virgin who can’t be sexual without a man. Or, alternatively, that’s she so self-contained and powerful that she doesn’t need a man at all. Yet soil is fertile and rich with an all-encompassing energy. It is constantly ready to bring forth new life, new forms of ecstasy.
Clitoral strength & the quest for my lost orgasm I reminded Carine that Virgos are of the Earth, and thus the most deeply and naturally sexual of all the horoscope signs.
Carine nodded, adding that her partner was a Scorpio, “And you know what they say about Scorpios … But yes, this is an interesting way to look at being a Virgo.”
Our conversation in the Lust room continued a theme from an earlier press conference, where I’d given Carine a bronze clitoris necklace created by Parisian jeweler, Anne Larue. At that event, we discussed my newly finished book, Sex Drive, which is all about how women need to learn how to conjure their sexuality as a life force. Carine picked up the organically-formed clitoris and said, with pure Virgoan instinct, “it is the symbol of female strength, n’est-ce pas?”
Written following an illness that destroyed my orgasm, Sex Drive is my memoir about driving across America in search of this lost pleasure center. But what started as a quest for the ultimate auto-erotic experience became a fantastic voyage into my own body, a way to heal what no western doctor had been able to heal, and a chance to re-build my orgasm from the ground up …
Taking nature as my lover Contrary to the cliché surrounding “Virgo the virgin,” I’m not averse to a little kinky dungeon sex. But one of the discoveries that touched me the most during my drive across America was meeting porn star-turned artist Annie Sprinkles and discovering her idea of Ecosexuality- the notion that we can look at nature as our lover rather than our mother.
Annie took me on a sensual and thought-provoking “Ecosexy nature walk,” encouraging me to find my “E Spot” (Eco spot) by slapping what really did appear to be butts of trees and sniffing what seemed to be dicks of flowers. I grew up in Cornwall, England, one of the most country bumpkin of all the UK counties, so the crazy hippy Californian shit didn’t seem weird to me. But it also struck me that maybe this was my Virgo side coming out too.
Ecosexy suggests that swinging-from-the-chandeliers type sex doesn’t have to be the ultimate good time. When you tire of human energy, plant energy is a welcome and mysterious boon. Slowing things down and thinking a little out of the box can make sensuality even more exciting – and sustainable.
Slow seduction & natural witchery At the end of the evening, Carine revealed the inspiration behind her lust-themed installation, and her hopes for an evening of “radical feminine energy”: “I am interested in seducing people slowly,” she told me, adding that there should be a balance in everything, even lust.
“Desire is a balance between restraint and provocation. There is something fragile about desire. That is why I made the walls of delicate latex.”
Researching Madame Clicquot for the project, who became a widow at the age of 27 and took over her husband’s champagne business, Carine said she wanted to emphasize female strength and the “magic” that is in the air at this time of year. “I felt the idea of witchcraft and I wanted to destabilize the sense of the ordinary.”
A Scorpio might have seen this mysical talk as a cue for some Alistair Crowley-style Sex Magik kink. But us Virgos took a more natural approach. My birthplace, Cornwall, is known for its witches and “piskies,” so the idea of sorcery and magic have always seemed normal to me.
And fellow Virgo, Carine, was even more playful about the whole thing. “It is fun, no?” she exclaimed to her latex Lady in Red, and back for another round of dancing …
Stephanie Theobald is a journalist for the Sunday Times, the Guardian and Elle UK. She is also the author of four novels. Sex Drive is her fifth book. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter, and help crowd-fund Sex Drive HERE.
In search of the deepest act of spiritual surrender, Alexandra Roxo gets bound and discovers boundlessness with the ancient art of Shibari bondage …
“Shibari (Japanese Rope Bondage) can be erotic, intimate, loving, sexy, quiet or raucous, meditative, artistic, insightful, transformative—all depending on the people engaged and how they both feel at the moment” – Victoria Blue
I am always on the hunt to find ways to get free, to go wild, to let loose, and to go deeper into myself. Over the last 15 years, my search to explore the depths of my sexuality and spirituality has taken me everywhere from witch camp in the woods of Oregon, to working as a dancer in a truck stop strip club in New Mexico, to banging a drum at a Rainbow Gathering in West Virginia, to an orgasmic meditation circle where I had my clit stroked by an old Indian man … and SO many other places and practices.
Drugs. Sex. Spirit. Art. It’s been a lifetime of exploration that started the first time my mom pulled Louise Hay off the bookshelf when I was 7, and the first time I kissed a boy, and girl, at 8 …
So for an explorer of depths who hasn’t left many stones unturned, I am always seeking something new to try and am always ready with a big fat YES!
WOMEN TYING WOMEN My next yes fell straight into my lap after my dear friend Kyp Malone (who played the “urban shaman” in my web series “Be Here Nowish,” and whom I consider a Yoda of sorts), took me to a dinner party, introduced me to a woman in the corner named Victoria Blue, and said “You two should talk.”
It all remained a mystery until months later. I was on the bus back home from 3 days of steeping and soaking in the magical Orr Hot Springs of Northern California and I suddenly thought to myself: I want to be tied up. This was especially random after spending 3 days in a tub reading a book about Jesus’ mystical life. But the words were clear and from my heart.
I’d been tied up by lovers before and engaged in a fair amount of BDSM in sex, but I knew there was something more here that I wanted and I began to investigate the ancient form of Japanese bondage called Shibari. Whereas other types of BDSM include performed dominance or submission, or the giving and receiving of pain as practice, Shibari is a fine art. Comparing a “50 Shades” rope scene with Shibari would be like comparing an IKEA rug with one from a Moroccan souk.
Interestingly, when I googled “Shibari LA” and the first thing to pop up was a workshop called “Women Tying Women” with none other than Kyp’s friend Victoria as teacher! The next day, the magic continued when I walked into my 5Rhythms class and a cute woman ran up to me, handed me a card, and said “Come to ‘Women Tying Women!’ My friend Victoria Blue is teaching!“ “She has one private session left. Do you want it?’
FULL. BODY. YES!
GOING OFF LEASH So why did these words spring from my soul and why did I even want to be tied? Perhaps there is some past life witch healing there. But really, I think it’s because I crave deep surrender. And I crave deep catharsis. And I long to become art as often as possible …
How many places in your life can you TRULY surrender in? By surrender, I mean LOSE YOUR MIND. Let go of the reins. My friend Andi calls it “going off leash.” When you go “off leash” you slip into an altered state of ecstasy and sometimes agony and the mind goes quiet. Void.
Mind-blowing, expansive sex is a place one can find surrender. Meditation can be. Some good old fashioned tequila and a night of all night dancing with some MDMA licked from a tiny plastic bag in a Brooklyn bathroom worked in my late 20s. Plant medicine ceremonies too. Dance can be ecstatic and deep. But being tied up seemed like a depth of surrender and catharsis that my soul needed now.
Even though I’d been “off leash” many times, I was still nervous before going to see Victoria. Because not only was I going to be tied, I would also be suspended. Not like suspended from school—like suspended from the ceiling off a rope. Yes, this may conjure some morbid images of hanging corpses, but I thought of it like making myself into an ornate chandelier hanging as a centerpiece.
I told Victoria I wanted to be tied in a pose of expansion—heart opening, if possible. She quietly blindfolded me …
BOUND & BOUNDLESS I closed my eyes and Victoria began to play a German instrumental album that was integral to my sexual awakening in my early 20s. Out of all the music in the world she chose the goth band that the first person who ever tied me up used to play, and whom I had learned some of the most beautiful and fun things about sex at the age of 23. This moment of kismet softened my heart like butter, and as she tied me I felt myself starting to relax after being reminded of the divinity present.
She bound me tight, hands up and open, back arched up, heart to the sky, one leg extended, and one folded. I let the ropes hold me. They were tight. Not soft and sweet. I began to turn into pliable flesh with no other option but letting go. I was like an infant. Helpless. Paralyzed almost. But the more and more I was tied, the more and more relaxed I felt. Like someone was caring for my soul.
Then she hoisted me up and I lay back, being held only by this rope around my waist, floating in the air. The whole of my weight resting on one piece of rope. Completely bound. Angelic even.And that’s when the full surrender and deep catharsis began …
Tears streamed down. Then they broke into deep, deep sobs from some place inside me that I had never met before. And moans of pain mixed with joy. Of release. Of heartache and heartbreak. I hung there. The pain escalated until the discomfort quieted the mind in the most nurturing way. The only thing possible to do was breathe.
I sobbed and breathed until I reached that edge that I have loved to flirt with for so many years. I whispered to her: “I’m at my limit” with tears streaming down my face and my chest. And then, ever so gently, Victoria pulled me down. She stroked my head and told me that I stayed up there a very long time and that I was very strong. As she pulled the ropes off me, my body felt lighter and freer than it had in ages. I felt my consciousness move into every cell. I could breathe into corners where breath hadn’t touched. I felt alive.
Discover more about Victoria’s private sessions and group classes HERE, and join she and I this October for a two day overnight retreat in Topanga that will bring together Shibari, Shadow Work, Storytelling, and Sexual Healing. If you’re interested in this deep work, add your name HERE and we’ll send out applications and full retreat info in a few weeks.
When Love is our teacher heartbreak can be the most powerful medicine, says Alexandra Roxo in her latest Holy F*ck column…
So maybe just maybe some mega shit has been hitting the fan during this Venus Retrograde? Or perhaps it’s minor pieces of shit for you. Little annoying pieces of shit you thought were gone…but are still stinking up the place? Perhaps it’s around romantic love, rejection, partnership. Or perhaps self love, worth, value.
Chances are you’ve been stung. But guess what??! This means your heart is open—that it’s accessible, soft, tender, growing, reshaping, adapting, expanding. THIS IS A GOOD THING. Heartbreak can be the most powerful medicine.
Committing to living with an open heart it is not an easy road. It can mean letting your heart break and break and break, but each time it breaks it swells and becomes bigger and messier and wider and has the capacity to hold more.
Love has always been my personal teacher of choice. When I was 20 and all my friends had gurus, I was secretly writing the words “AHEM PREMA” (I am divine love) on my hand and telling folks, “Love is my guru!” I’ve been obsessed with Love for as long as I can remember. I’ve been in Love MANY times and rejected MANY times more, and still I keep on going for it.
How do I define Love?
Love is that which we were made from and that which we will return to. The primordial ooze in us. The ever present God-Goddess sparkle living in each cell. Which we feel when we”fall” in Love. Really what I believe happens is that this “falling” is us OPENING to the Love that already exists within us. What if you could feel that without an other person? This is what I’m talking about!!
And because I also never quit being curious and doing things that scare me, I signed up for a two-day intensive last week called “The Yoga of Intimacy” with Londin Angel Winters and Justin Patrick Pierce (who also may be the hottest couple on the planet. Major #RelationshipGoals.)
Arriving at a beautiful inn in Topanga I prepared myself to be “crucified by Love.” (My ideal Saturday!) Standing across from a man whose name I didn’t know, who wasn’t “my type,” I let Love show me where I was guarded. And I let it make me feel safe enough to pull down the walls and completely open to said stranger.
I looked into his eyes and cried. I shared my depths. And it felt as powerful as an Ayauasca ceremony. If not more powerful! With eyes open and locked onto someone else’s, instead of eyes closed solo-style like in plant journeys, I couldn’t escape my demons or pain or shut down or dissociate. Justin said it perfectly … “If you think ayahuasca is crazy, try love.”
I could literally NOT form a sentence afterwards. As a writer and wordsmith I was kinda freaked out by the temporary mush in my brain. But I was assured that this meant I had surrendered to the pure-as-hell-delicious Shakti/Divine Feminine energy that resides outside the mind.
99 HEARTBREAKS & I DON’T WANT TO SOLVE THEM
At the workshop, I also had to go on a practice dinner date with an older doctor from Beverly Hills who talked like I imagine Freud would have sounded. I did NOT wanna get vulnerable with him but I did, and I broke into tears across the dinner table as I revealed to him my deepest desires. He was beyond grateful that I showed him my Heart.
As I cried and told him of all the times I had broken my heart, he said “At the end of your life would you rather have loved and had your heart broken 99 times and on the 100th found someone special, than hidden your heart and not loved at all?” It was true. And all 99 times of heartbreak are heart opening and “special” in my book.
Two days at this intensive rocked me to my core. It was SO terrifying to let go and let Love do its thing. Yet I felt more delicious than I had in ages.
SO HOW CAN YOU WORK WITH LOVE’S MEDICINE?
When Love becomes a skill and a medicine, you can hang out with a close friend and feel deeply nourished and fed when you leave them, like you just got 10 hugs and a bowl of soup from your Grandma.
Or you and your Lover can be in a constant state of divine communion, and one glance feels like 1,000 gourmet raw chocolates for your soul.
A solo Love practice means at a stop light in the car you can feel the depths of Love swimming through your body and yoni, and you have the power to release a warm honey glow throughout your body that feels like you are cumming. Try walking into a meeting from that place!
Here’s how to start …
– Love and be loved. Identify the 5 ways you feel most Love(d). I do this with all my clients. Perhaps it’s petting your cat. Or watching your fave film. Meditating. Chanting to Goddess. Get to know the direct path to your Heart, if you don’t already, and start feeling the Love vibes often by using those tools.
– Connect to humans/animals. The internet doesn’t count unless you are one-on-one on Skype with someone. IRL is the best way to go. Make this a priority. It is the remedy against overeating, loneliness, indulging in bad habits, overworking … I’m talking real connection! Even one solid hug and “Good Morning” from a roomie is something.
– Let your heart get naked. This is where you get vulnerable. If you can practice this daily, you’ll either deepen your already existing partnerships or tenderize the nest of your heart to get it ready to let love in. Call a new friend and share something intimate. Write a poem and share it online. Ask someone for help. Practice vulnerability and practice receiving some Love. (Like let the guy at Trader Joe’s help you to your car already!)
– Feel, feel, feel. Sounds obvious, right? But how often do you feel your feelings in the moment? Practice vocalizing your pain. Frustration. Sadness. As you’re experiencing it. Let yourself feel the depths of your yearning/your rage/your sadness/your joy DAILY.
– Daydream. Do a little bit of daydreaming each day. Imagine your lover caressing your neck. Imagine your lover giving you that “I wanna fuck you” look across the room at a crowded party. If this sounds cheesy to you then work on the vulnerability of your heart.
Whether you are in partnership or flying solo, you can play with Love every day. You can become more and more conscious of living in your full beauty and radiance and sexiness the more and more you release the fear of getting hurt. You can just open. The pain becomes part of your practice too and, trust me, you even start to love that! WHAAA?!!! Can it be?!!! Yeeeep.
Reclaiming your sexual power and potential is part of the collective awakening happening now. And it’s never too late, says Alexandra Roxo…Portraits: Alexandra Herstik
I’ve taken a few months off from really diving into topics of sex, eroticism, and partnership here in my column. Why? I must admit, I’ve been distracted by politics and found myself thinking: “How can I dare talk about sex, as the world is seemingly in dire need of discourse about so many other things?!”
Well, as my passion for sharing about love and sex wandered around my brain like a disenfranchised child with no home, who else but Sigmund Freud swooped in to validate it—and shove it back into the world!
Freud said that sexual repression is the chief psychological problem of humankind, and the root of many crimes, illness, war and woe. As if I need a dead white man to remind me of something I already knew! But I did. Touché Dr Freud, touché.
And his theory reminded me that it’s okay to continue sharing about love, sex and partnerships—even in a time when ICE raids are being done to innocent people, families are being separated and deported, and the whole structure of a country that felt like it was moving towards progress is being threatened.
Because this includes LOVE and SEX.
THE SEXUAL LANDSCAPE YOU WERE BORN INTO
Let’s take a very brief tour of history. Some say that we once lived in a “partnership” society, where people co-existed in some states of harmony. This shifted into a “dominator” society. Have you seen the movie or read the book “Mists of Avalon?” In the book there is a battle between the “old” religion—a religion honoring nature, The Goddess, the many faces of the Divine—and the “new” religion, a religion honoring ONE man.
Pantheistic to monotheistic. This shift changed everything for humanity. When the Goddess religion/pantheistic religions went out, so did our connection to nature, to ecstatic states, to sex, to the Feminine. By denying sex we denied nature! As Terrence McKenna said in his book Food of the Gods: “The dark night of the soul for planet Earth began.”
The “Wild Woman” (seen as a reflection of nature herself) was then sought to be tamed. We saw the literal possession of women. Burning of witches. Corsets. Chastity belts. Women’s rights being taken away in many many cultures. The polarization of “the virgin” and “the whore.” And this, my dears, is what YOU were born into.
Fair enough, in this country we got it about the LEAST bad—we are able to vote, get an abortion, wear what we want. BUT this also created a dichotomy that can be VERY confusing.
You were told you can speak up and be you. But you must also be sweet and pretty and skinny. You were told it was slutty to enjoy lots of sex. But you were told also “Claim your sexuality!” You were told you could wear what you want. But when you wore it you were treated differently. At least when it was scandalous to show an ankle it was very clear. ANKLE = SLUT. Now the dial is all over the place.
If you were born into any religion that is monotheistic and patriarchal then whether you want to accept it or not, you probs have internalized all kinds of sexual repression with a side of shame, and a dash of guilt on top. (If you somehow escaped all this then…GODDESS BLESS!)
SO, HOW THE HELL DO WE MOVE BEYOND THIS?
It’s going to take a lot more work. See my piece from last year about “Sexual Healing” for a refresh and jump start.
The biggest thing we can do is keep QUESTIONING. Everything. In sex. Redefining our experiences as our own. Making our own rules. Reclaiming what is our human right.
FOR EXAMPLE. Perhaps by society’s standards it’s not acceptable to sob uncontrollably during sex. HOWEVER, the energy of sex is MAD powerful, and when used to it’s full conscious potential can be a shamanic experience. So, if you are having conscious deep deep sex, and start releasing trauma or shame or guilt from your body you will probably sob. This can cause more shame because we’ve been taught that’s not okay.
My first girlfriend was a shamanic mover of energy and she knew it. The orgasms I had with her moved massive amounts of shame I had internalized growing up in the Christian south, out of my body. She held space for me. Made me feel safe enough to completely release into my body and use the energy of sex for deep healing. Sometimes that meant opening further and further when I thought I couldn’t anymore, but she helped me keep going, much like in a plant medicine ceremony, or even running a marathon. The altered state that one enters during sex can be a place where so much work can take place.
So how do you allow yourself to let go enough to work with the energy of sex, or even love or partnership, for healing and ecstasy?
HOW TO LITERALLY RECLAIM YOUR SEXUAL POWER
Create a conscious container. By container I mean a defined space. Whether you are coming together just for sex or also for a certain amount of time weekly for sexual exploration define the rules, the terms. How long? What do we do if someone wants to scream or cry?
Communication! If you want to have a soul sob with a deep cervical orgasm you have to make sure your partner can “hold” you through it. Instead of saying, “Hey babe. What’s wrong? Don’t cry,” educate them to hold the space for you, and say instead: “I’m here. Let it out. Stay with it. I love you.”
When you release some of the pain in your body that’s hidden deep within your cervix or womb of COURSE there will be tears, shouting, laughing—ALL OF IT! But you will feel so much lighter and freer afterwards if you let those emotions come out and you don’t hold them in. Not worrying about what you may look like or sound like. Instead, being like a raging river, embodying Kali, embodying Venus, the rivers of Oshun, the energy of a storm, the energy of the ocean. She is never ashamed for her moods and needs. She just IS.
If you look at sex as expansion beyond the “get in and get off” vibe we’ve been taught by movies and TV our whole lives, you will see it has massive healing potential to clear through chakras and move blocks—while increasing your radiance and attraction levels in a major way! It’s a super power and that’s why it has been repressed and controlled for so long.
If you think back to how you “learned” sex it was probably mostly through media. Women “sound” like this or that. They make these faces during sex. They lay on the bed in this or that way. What if that was all learned behavior and in order to reclaim your full sexual potential you get to go on the journey of FINDING OUT what your natural sexual state is?
What faces you make. What sounds. Maybe you sing when you cum! Or make low guttural grunts. Maybe you sob uncontrollably for A YEAR as you release shame from your body. Does that mean something is wrong with you? NO. HELL NO. Maybe you find your fantasy and realize you like to be flogged or spanked. Does that mean something is wrong with you? NOPE.
It’s a choice. You make the choice to embody Bridget Jones. Or Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. Or Carrie in Sex and the City. Or…Venus emerging from the ocean. Kali emerging from a fire. Persephone diving into the Underworld and coming back renewed. You choose.
RE-WRITE THE SEX SCRIPT
Here are some practical ways to begin to rewrite some of your sexual programming…
– Be Curious! Read books. Listen to podcasts. Don’t be ashamed if you want to learn about polyamory. Or multiple orgasms. Or whatever the hell you’re into. Nothing is too strange. Nothing is too weird. As you begin to delve, protect your little seed of curiosity before sharing with everyone. You don’t need anyone’s opinions about your desire to learn about 1950’s Occult Sex Parties or prostate massage. It’s your exploration. Keep it sacred.
– Look at your demons. Your shadows. Your shames. Have you engaged in healing around your sexual history? Chances are your first sexual experiences were rather “unconscious,” maybe with alcohol attached and not centered around heart opening and connecting. And if not, well, kudos to you! (Mine were pretty dope with candles and a fountain and fairy lights and soft music and eye gazing even when I was a preteen cause I was #BornThisWay. But then I’ve also had about 100 that were NOT like that at all…) If you feel you have work to do around love and sex then start journaling about your programming, stories, traumas. Engage in conversations. Do the healing work with a coach or in a group.
– Create the space to explore. If you’re in partnership then consciously communicate with your partner about wanting to make the sex more conscious and expansive, and work to bust through some of the cultural norms together. Perhaps this means engaging in some connecting work before sex. Eye gazing. Doing some tantric breath. Giving each other space to hear fantasies without judgement. That means if your lover says “I’m turned on by watching horses fuck” you have to listen and hold space for that and not be like “EW!” immediately. Trust is very important when opening in this way. If you’re solo then start getting in there and doing your own exploration work with your self. Learn your fantasies. What feels good and what doesn’t.
– Be aware of your words. Stories you perpetuate with your words which can cast magical spells. Sometimes I catch myself talking like Samantha from SATC and I stop myself. Some of that languaging and programming is NOT conscious at all. Sure, it’s fun, but it’s creating a reality that I picked up from TV. Not my own heart.
– Question everything. This can be fun! “Do I actually like to wax my puss? Or do I do it cause someone told me to?” Hmm well for me honestly I think it’s the later. “Do I actually like lingerie and Agent Provocateur?” Resounding YES for me on that one! “Where is my sexuality at on the Kinsey scale?”
– Talk to your friends. THIS IS HARD. One time when I brought up the transcendental power of fisting to catapult you into an altered state in a car of women there was RADIO SILENCE. It was awkward. But without discussion things continue to be taboo Unspeakable. Hidden away in dark corners. So moving past that awkward silence with some laughter and humility is enough to open the floodgates. Before you know it someone will be sharing how they once used a cucumber as a dildo and you won’t feel alone.
If you want to work with a group on this, I’m doing a monthly HOLY F*CK workshop starting on the New Moon of 2.26! This is a little different than the salon I did last year as this is deeper work, and enough to keep you busy exploring and reprogramming and rewiring your sex energy until the next month’s workshop! Sign up HERE. And as always I do one on one mentorships and coaching sessions which you can book HERE.
Yes, P as in pussy! In her latest Holy F*ck column, Alexandra Roxo explores ways to get things moving and grooving down there…
“Why you wear such tight clothes? Chi no flow down there!” The words of my five feet tall Chinese acupuncturist, Alice Yan, from Mott Street still haunt me every time I suck myself into a skinny jean or put on a pencil skirt.
I’ve been trying to keep that lower chi flowing for years and it’s recently come to my attention that I’m not the only one with some blocked P-Chi. By P, I mean Pussy, yes. Call it Shakti, sekhem, prana… Whatever it is. It’s the vibes seated deep in your pelvis waiting to be tapped into and, culturally, even globally, we all know p-chi is repressed/suppressed/depressed…All of it.
Instead of going to the bigger stuff – patriarchy, women being squashed out of all religions, femicide etc…- I say let’s start the healing on a micro-level, in our own lives, and mostly in our own panties.
A few years ago I found myself in a relationship, deeply in love, but with zero sex drive. Basically, my lower chakras were asleep. I looked for help. And it came via Paz de la Huerta, a goddess with free flowing P-Chi. So, I felt good about turning to Grace Kim, an amazing coach, for help.
It was a case of: “Hi. I can’t feel my lower chakras and – worse – I”VE BECOME OKAY WITH IT.” Her response? “Well this is blocking the flow for work, money, sex, and creativity for you. Manifestation occurs when the lower and higher chakras meet. At the heart.”
She showed me a chakra map for manifestation, sent me to a 5Rhythms class, recommended I wear more red, shake a rattle, and put my feet on the earth. DONE. But, slowly my energy crept back into my head, my mind, my iPhone…That, plus no connection to nature living in Brooklyn, and my lower chakras went on vacay, again.
So, when my acupuncturist straight up yelled at me and told me it was my fault I had bad cramps and irregular periods I got it. And since then I’ve been working on it, determined to stop living from the waist or neck up.
I recently did a snake dancing ceremony with a woman named Londin Angel Winters who has the chi FLOWIN. (You can just see when a woman has that Pussy Shine Light on. It’s a beacon of light in a dark world!) She uses the snakes to help you connect to your Kundalini and subtle energy body, using the metaphor of your pelvis as a cauldron – and, when you drop into that cauldron, you activate, the heat rises, and the heart melts. BOOM.
I danced with this snake named Bojack. And although he was around my neck, I felt it deep in my WOMB. Well, basically all my lady parts…It was like my Kundalini’s inner heater got cranked up to high. I cried and drove home feeling high as a kite! It was a powerful way to get that energy flowing. The next dance led to a deeper activation deep in my pelvis. A sense of ease. Grace. Calm.
In fact, as soon as I set my intention to unlock my P-Chi in a LIFE way – opposed to just a SEX way – is when it started to unfold. A filmmaker I barely know called me the other night and we chatted for two hours, with her asking: “Do you practice masturbation manifestation?”
I was like “Hot damn! I been practicing “sex with lotsa people” for so many years, but now since I’m on month four of celibacy I’m even re-defining my orgasm!” #Latetotheparty? But yes, I AM practicing masturbation for manifestation no, and it’s working. It’s another way to say hi to your P-Chi and get to know it/work with it/party down with it, and most of all HEAL it.
The other night while engaging in this “practice” I had some amazing business ideas. I called my friend Elyssa the next day to share, and as I told her I looked around and saw three white cars drive past. All with 11 on the license plates. I started screaming. P-CHI ON.
If this all sounds intense, don’t worry. You don’t have to wrap yourself in a reptile or do sex magic to switch on your P-Chi. My new friend Jayne Goldheart, another super activated woman, took me to a Qoya class, which is another way there. It’s a type of dance that def heals some deep feminine energy. I loved it.
And while I found myself twirling my pelvis in the dark it dawned on me: there are WAVES of women up on this cultural pussy healing and reactivation, and as I’ve been sucking my gut in so I can zip my leather pencil skirt, they have been fighting the good fight to keep women in their pleasure power pelvic center! Thank. Goddess.
The journey of healing and harnessing your P-Chi can be lifelong. It can be scary at times. Unlocking Shakti and Kundalini can also bring major waves of change in your life, but it’s so worth it. An awakened woman also scares some people off, but the ones who are meant to stick around and dance with you will.
The path of the open pelvis is a long and winding road, and as you consider whether to embark on the journey yourself, remember this: it’s also the direct route to unlocking your Goddess Energy, abundance, and intuition. And to the thousands of women helping remind us to get back to this power: I salute you all.
5 Easy to Get Your P-Chi Flowing
Start wearing more dresses and stop wearing underwear. I’m not saying wear a short tight dress panty free on the 6 train in NY in rush hour. Yuck. I’m thinking Saturday to brunch, a long Mara Hoffman look, a gentle breeze…Also, cross your legs less. That stops the flow!
Call in sick the first day of your cycle and start to make your own ritual around your period. And if your period is in a state of dysfunction (which mine was for years) spend some time on it, cause that’s a P-Chi block you’re dealin’ with. Read Alissa Vitti. Christiane Northrup. Ween yourself off Advil and listen to your cycle.
Move! NOT Soul Cycle – that crunches your P-Chi. I’m talking something that loosens and opens things up. Jamaican dancehall class has been my medicine! What’s yours? I also love Qoya, 5Rhythms, and will be getting into ecstatic as soon as I get some bell bottom yoga pants.
Let your belly hang out. I know this sounds wiiiiiiild right? Lol. It is pretty radical – what if we all took photos on Instagram with our bellies free? #Revolution. But honestly the breath is the biggest tool to warming up your nether regions and once you start releasing your breath into your pelvis you will feel a difference.
Write out your P-Chi story. Do a ritual around your relationship to your lower chakras, the energy there, when it’s been blocked, when it’s been wounded, what you want from it. Go as far or close as you want with it.
Alexandra Roxo is an LA based filmmaker and actress who has recently began doing coaching, healing and teaching work. Read more on alexandraroxo.com. Follow her on Insta here and read her past Numinous articles on Now Age love and sex here.
Our guest Tarotscopes queen, Lindsay Mack of Wild Soul Healing, has pulled Oppression (The Devil) for this week’s forecast! Don’t be scared – this is the perfect energy to help us face our demons ahead of next week’s detoxifying Pisces New Moon eclipse…
Does the Beltane maypole really represent the phallus? Elyssa Jakim uncovers the Pagan roots of pole dancing, and has some sexy tips for spring… Image: Ania Powalowska
The wheel of the year is turning toward Beltane. Traditionally celebrated on the first of May, this wiccan/pagan holiday conjures up the famous image of the maypole. I wasn’t told until recently that the circling maypole is an inherently phallic symbol—decorating and dancing around, well, a large penis. So much the better! Beltane is about fertility, sexuality, and abundance. This time of year, we are beginning to really dust off our bodies from the stiffness of winter, to come home to our sensuality. We’re moving from April showers to May flowers. It is all about blossoming. As such, it is the perfect time to celebrate sexuality fertility.
I’ve been getting this hint in strange ways in my inbox all week. Emails about “my orgasm type?”, an offer for a month of erotic tips, a request from a friend to be interviewed about love, a video about how to be a conscious and loving parent. It’s seems like we’re all tuning into this energy (subtly and not so subtly) so why not embrace it?
And so, because it’s fun, I’ve gathered a few tips to help you love up your sexual self and celebrate Beltane! I’ll also be offering a by-donation Beltane ritual at Species by the Thousands in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, on May 5, if you want to keep the juiciness flowing through the coming Full Moon period.
:: SPRING SEXY TIME TIPS ::
Light some genital candles. Seriously. Penis and pussy candles, sold at Enchantments among other places, are extremely powerful. They come in red, white, and black—my preference being the white ones, for healing and purification. You can light each candle with the intention of stepping into your sexual power, fully embodying the divine feminine and masculine, celebrating the goddess and the god, and clearing old sexual hurts.
I recently lit a penis candle as a way to “say goodbye to the old dicks” in my life, and heal past sexual relationships, wishing all old lovers light. I then lit the pussy candle with the intention of fully honoring and loving her, of stepping into my sexual power and sensuality. Of course, which candle you light and how you light it will depend on your sexual preferences and history and your intuition. There is no right or wrong way to do this.
Love up your whole body. Get some shea butter, coconut oil, or any nice body moisturizer that you enjoy, and use it to anoint every inch of your body. Go slowly, celebrating each part of you, telling yourself how beautiful you are, noticing small details and marks, and breathing through the experience. This process may not be easy, as we all have so many stored, often hidden, feelings about our bodies – which in turn store feelings that may be released through this practice. My advice is to go slowly and gently, play soft music and offer yourself as much compassion as you can. And don’t worry, it’s largely lovely and enjoyable!
Do something romantic for yourself. Buy yourself flowers. Take a bath with essential oils, rose petals, crystals, and candles. Take yourself out on a date and get dressed up for yourself. Then take yourself home and make love to yourself. And if you have a partner, do all of this for them too!
Play a secret, sexy game. Whenever you see someone you’re sexually attracted to, check in with your genitals and see how they feel. Intentionally connecting our visual cues of attraction from our eyes to our sex center is so healing and opening for us. This one is great for the subway. Oh, and throw in some kegels too, why don’t you?
Go out dancing. The Earth gods and goddesses (not to mention the fairies) just love dancing. So go dance for them! Dance for your body, and dance!
Happy Beltane all. I hope that by loving up your body and sexual essence your inner fire can melt away those last vestiges of winter, making you be ready for a spring that’s full of play.
Bad sex is no joke. It’s time for a little in the way of sexual healing, says Hanna Bier… Images: From Sexual Orgasms 1-10 by Romain Gorisse via Behance.net
A large proportion of the people I know are willing to settle for “blah” when it comes to sex. My spirit sister once told me about her first time having sex in a bunk bed of an Australian hostel. She basically said: “Well, I knew I had to get it over with sooner or later anyways. I was young, so I thought, what the heck.”
I’m sorry, but to me this sounds a lot like self-rape, the social acceptance of which is alarmingly high. Because to me, saying “yes” to any kind of sex that isn’t rooted in complete transcendence and sexual rapture is an act of self-violence. Sex is a sacred act! Why would we want to settle for anything less than mind-blowing, life-altering boner sessions?
But as the saying goes; “Sex is like pizza, even if it’s bad, it’s still pretty good.” And so no wonder there’s an epidemic of 15-minute fucks, with only the privileged / lucky few having been awakened to the power of a three-hour sexual prayer.
Before I broke up with my first boyfriend, I was clueless about sexual misery. He happily took care of me for four to five hours, not stopping until my body gave up and my mind, body and flesh had been thoroughly penetrated.
And it wasn’t because he was overly experienced or had taken a gazillion tantric seminars before we had sex. It was actually quite the opposite, and simply that he was totally in tune with his cock. He was the kind of skilful that can only come from total sexual innocence. He fucked with his heart, his mind unpolluted from pop culture’s pornographic mentality. He was fully present, just doing his thing. Over, and over, and over again.
How could I have known that such wholehearted banging was actually a rarity? But since him, I have yet to find a lover who’s given me even a fraction of what he was capable of.
This discovery truly shattered me. I began to see the feminine energy around me shrinking and turning pale. I noticed the male getting limp and giving up way too soon. This sexual inadequacy manifested as stilted creativity. A loss of perseverance. Power mistaken for bitchiness. Attention mistaken for weakness.
And it’s infuriating just how ingrained the idea is that the female has to orgasm within 30 minutes, and keep quiet while doing so.
Because the biggest healing potential for the feminine archetype lies in deep and thorough fucking, and there’s no way a lady can find enlightenment in a half-hour lunch break fling. No wonder she backs out and would rather settle for no sex than intercourse that feels more like being poked or stabbed.
Every time we have bad sex, our consciousness is injured in some way, and if we don’t make efforts to heal ourselves from that, our capacity for enlightenment is severely constricted. Which basically means, bad sex = longer soul journey. And we don’t really want that, do we?
So when considering your next sexual encounter, here’s how to not rape yourself…
As a woman: – Spend time smelling and tasting the person you are sleeping with. Ideally, you’d want to chug your lovers cum and sweat. Our body liquids are nature’s love potions. They contain all information we need in order to workout if the person we’re about to merge with is sexually compatible with us. And if they are, just a drop of their elixir will send us off into the void. – Notice your vagina giving you signals that she’s truly ready. She needs to be fully lubricated, aching to be penetrated, and energetically sucking in the finger/penis/tongue. – Now your only task is to open. If you can’t, something’s off. Your vagina is like a compass, pointing you away from spiritually violent sex by not wetting and not opening up. This is alarmingly obvious, yet so often ignored advice. I wouldn’t have to give sixth grade sex-ed pointers if it weren’t necessary. So trust her when she says no. Get ready to break when she says yes. – In short, if it’s not a “fuck yes”, is a “fuck no.”
As a man: – Wait to be invited. You can only safely enter a person to the extent that your counterpart sucks you in. Every time you push to open a gate, you violate yourself and your partner. By feeling for the opening and waiting for the call, you give permission for complete surrender by your partner. – Be aware that the more she gets to open, the more deeply you get to penetrate. So play with it, advance a little and then wait to see if there’s a pull. If there is, go further. – Practice stamina. Bend life over and fuck it senseless. Over and over and over again. Every time you finish early or give up before you’ve truly penetrated what asked to be penetrated, you are selling yourself sexually short. – The male archetype enters a higher sexual order when he has perfected the skills of easing the female open. Think of it as opening her legs open, her heart, and her brain. And then keeping her there, until she surrenders just a little more to spill all of herself, losing herself completely in the torment of her sexual awakening.
Do you agree? Or is there something to be said for sex that’s short and sweet? Connect with us and share if you dare on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook…
Empowering women’s movement, or de facto sex cult? Dani Katz gets intimate with the practise known as Orgasmic Meditation…
“I hate LA, and I hate my life,” I sputter in a flurry of tears, snot and spaz-out, as I drop my purse on the floor of Jamie’s kitchen, and freak way out.
“And my favorite pants are ruined,” I whine, gesturing to the stains dotting the hem, remnants from this morning’s explosion of glass and green at Moon Juice, where my Kundalini teacher dropped an eleven-dollar bottle of algae on my Birkenstock while lamenting the torment of her beloved’s non-monogamous tendencies. “…and everything would be easier if I were dead.”
“And how late is your period?” Jamie smiles, perpetually unfazed by my dark, melodramatic tendencies.
Why I can’t seem to remember that my every twenty-eight day despondency/bad hair day combo is related to the onset of my moon remains one of the more confounding mysteries of being woman. Well, that and our tendency to totally abandon ourselves for the crumbs of affection half-heartedly proffered by the man-children who don’t deserve us.
I reach for my iPhone, and pull up my Period Tracker app.
Period is 1 Day Late.
“I had a feeling,” Jamie nods. “Let’s get you stoned; let’s get you fed; and, let’s get your pussy rubbed.”
While this last zinger might seem wildly inappropriate coming from anyone else, Jamie is a One Taste devotee, an adept in the cult of orgasm, and – as such – her answer to pretty much everything is: Get your clit rubbed.
For those not yet hip to the casual stroking craze that equates orgasm with meditation, and mindfulness with turn-on, Orgasmic Meditation (OM) is a practice focused on female orgasm. It involves two humans, at least one vagina, a timer, a dash of lube, a tightly held container comprised of a very specific configuration of pillows and limbs, and a very (very) precise stroke – a gentle, vertical petting atop the surface of the upper left quadrant of the clitoris with the tip of the left pointer finger, for fifteen minutes.
“Okay,” I sniff, wiping an errant strand of hair from my face. “Can we make that happen?”
“Pfft,” Jamie snorts. “Duh.”
I should probably mention that all three of Jamie’s roommates also OM. Like, religiously, and even then, fanatically, as in several times a day. It’s but a symptom of the One Taste organization’s culty-er aspects – outcroppings of community houses packed tight with pussies keen to be rubbed, and fingers eager to rub ‘em.
“Hey, Dani,” says Jamie’s roommate, Josh, walking into the kitchen all of two seconds later.
While Josh and I exchange greetings, Jamie – not one for subtleties – mimes a diddling motion with one pointer finger, while directing the other one my way. She’s a Capricorn; she makes shit happen.
“Wanna OM?” Josh blurts.
For those not living in houses populated exclusively by Orgasmic Meditators, most folks go about finding vaginas to rub, and fingers to rub ‘em on the OM Hub, a private online network available to those who qualify (i.e. throw down the cash for the online course, pass a quiz, and then throw down more for network access; oh, and who aren’t registered sex offenders).
“Anyone near Mar Vista wanna come stroke my pussy today between 3 and 5:30?” reads a sample posting.
The community operates on an any finger/any pussy/anytime philosophy, and the extent to which the randomness of the OM hook-up icks me out has proven prohibitive in my developing any regularity around the practice. To this end, I barely even qualify as a practitioner. Dabbler is probably even pushing it.
“Oh, hi honey,” Jamie said, meeting me at the top of the stairs back when she was first inculcated into the Grand Order of Holy Diddlers. “I’m just gonna squeeze in a quick OM, and then we’ll go.”
I took a seat on the futon in the loft, and texted our friends to let them know we were going to be late for dinner. It wasn’t long before the telltale sounds of turn-on started seeping forth from the backside of Jamie’s bedroom door.
Ew, I thought, scrambling to untangle the earbuds I couldn’t get out of my purse and into my ears fast enough.
It’s not that I’m prude, or shy, or at all delicate when it comes to erotic expression. Still, I just don’t really want to know what my friend sounds like when she’s getting off, much the same way I’m not interested in smelling her used tampons. TMI – way (way) TMI.
Minutes later, a man wearing glasses and a Pokemon t-shirt came strutting out of Jamie’s bedroom. “You next?” he asked, waggling a finger my way – a finger I could only guess was coated in vagina slime.
“Ew,” I snorted, thoroughly put off by the creamy digit aimed in my direction, but moreso the assumption that my holy vag was this random guy’s for the stroking.
When it comes to touching my vagina, the list of those who qualify for the privilege is short, and contained – lovers, gynecologists, the occasional nurse practitioner, and the Russian lady who waxes my bikini line. Hired tenders aside, it’s a highly restricted area, reserved for those I deem special/worthy enough to handle both the sacred wonderfulness that is my labia, as well as my heart, because – like so many people in our culture and maybe on the planet in general, I am programmed to believe that the regions are inextricably bound. As such, unless I’m in a relationship, my pussy doesn’t get much play.
Thus is the beauty of the OM – once she who is grossed out by the culture figures out how to meander her way around its ickier aspects. Hanging out at Jamie’s, as I’m now realizing, is a fantastic method to this end.
“Yes, please,” I say.
“When?” asks Josh.
And so it is that I’m dropping chlorella-stained trou in Josh’s room, while he places a washcloth in the center of “The Nest” – which is really just a yoga mat surrounded by half-moon meditation cushions strategically placed for my head, my thighs and his ass, but which will be honored as holy, and thus entered with the implicit understanding that while so cradled, there will be no canoodling, and no reciprocity. Just pussy-stroking. For fifteen minutes, no more, no less.
“Are you comfortable?” Josh asks, pulling my leg over his thigh, and arranging his foot so that it’s flat against mine.
I catch myself before asking How are we defining our terms? Because, while sure, I’m enjoying a semblance of ergonomic ease, I am also naked from the waist down, lying with my legs splayed to reveal my six days un-groomed pussy as a relative stranger dangles his arm over my thigh. Which – while fine – has me feeling more than a little vulnerable. Plus, there is the matter of warm-blooded man hands touching my inner thigh, of palm against flesh, and – um – the novelty of the connection and the alchemy on this unique, raw and dense plane of purely physical exchange. Which is all to say, comfortable isn’t the first descriptive that comes to mind.
“Uh-huh,” I chirp, because now is not the time for heady unravelings of my mental state, and because Jamie got me stoned while Josh arranged the pillows, and I’m just blitzed enough not to give a shit what he thinks of my spread eagled lady bits.
“Okay, I’m going to ground you, now,” Josh says, mashing his palms along the surface of my thighs.
It’s standard, The Grounding, as is the practice of announcing whatever touch is about to happen. It lends a sterile, business-like vibe to the exchange, which I happen to appreciate. As impersonal as we can keep our interaction, the better, I say. Josh is not my lover. Josh isn’t even a friend. Josh is the guy attached to the hands that are right now mashing my thighs, and my pelvis, and is getting ready to—
Oh fuck, I think, just now remembering the sequence of events, because it’s been a while.
Please don’t do The Noticing, I think, suddenly observing mild sensations of panic. Please don’t do The Noticing.
It’s my least favorite part of the practice, The Noticing, wherein the stroker ogles the vag in front of him and then shares his visual observation. Out loud.
“I’m noticing that you have one pubic hair that’s really straight, and poking straight up towards the ceiling,” a stroker once told me, as I wished a hole would open up in the ground beneath me, and swallow me at once.
“The outside of your lips are, like, a really dark pink, almost like cranberry juice,” noticed another, as my cheeks turned a similar shade, and I stared at the ceiling and wondered why any and all references to my vaginal “lips” creep me out so hard.
Please don’t do The Noticing, I psychically beg/command.
That Josh actually skips The Noticing is as much a testament to the anti-Noticing trend Jamie will later tell me is sweeping the community at large as it is to my psychic authority. No matter. Noticing isn’t happening. I’m golden, I think, grateful to have escaped the humiliation of Josh’s take on the whitehead lodged inside my inner thigh crease, as he starts the timer on his smartphone, snaps on a pair of latex gloves, and goes about sliding a hand underneath my ass.
“I’m going to touch your introitus now.”
Safeporting, they call it, the resting of the stroker’s thumb against the vaginal opening. I guess it’s supposed to help the strokee to feel held, to quell any lurking fears of floating up and toward the ceiling, of slipping through the cracks of an air vent and being forever lodged in the crawlspace with no pants on. Jamie has developed this annoying habit of rolling the term into her everyday lingo to reference any sort of safeguarding.
Like the time we were invited to our friends’ house for dinner, after a particularly awkward series of texts and naked hot tub gropings, and she said: “I know Michael and Katrina keep trying to fuck you, but don’t worry. I’ll be right there, safeporting you the whole time.”
I appreciated the sentiment, but, the languaging? Um…ew.
“I’m going to touch your pussy, now,” Josh announces as his lube-globby finger makes contact with my clit.
They’re big on the P-word, these Orgasmic Meditators. On the one hand, it’s refreshing, especially given how many Tantra intensives I’ve attended wherein the words yoni and punani are tossed around like so much New Age-appropriated Far Easterly exotica.
Still, if one more soft-eyed dude wearing three-day beard scruff and a rudrakshra mala wrapped around his sacred geometry tattooed wrist greets me by mashing his hands together at his curiously hairless heart chakra, bending at the waist, and purring Namaste, I might have a stroke. To this end, I’m all for the P-word. And yet, I find something slightly confrontational about its ubiquity, as if those who OM are wielding the word in the hopes of inspiring discomfort, verily daring those within earshot to take issue with their languaging, and their lifestyle.
“Okay,” I sigh, narrowing my focus of attention to the point of contact between Josh’s finger and my clit, while expanding my awareness around all the sensation said contact is generating.
“Why can’t you just do it yourself?” my mother prods when I meet her at Pilates a week later, wanting to not be disturbed by this, yet another comfort zone-challenging ritual in which her daughter is dabbling, and yet still not getting it.
It’s not that I can’t; it’s that I don’t. I tend to forget that a) I have a bundle of nerves in my vagina that tingle when stimulated; and b) I can stimulate them whenever I want to. I’m a heady gal – “an upper chakra creator” as Trish, my go-to psychic, likes to say. More often than not, I forget I even have a body, let alone that caressing it is an option. But, even if I chose to remember, OMing and masturbating are not the same thing.
“Ooohh…” Josh groans, clearly navigating a surge of arousal as the tip of his finger waggles up and down and up and down and up and down along the top of my clit.
OMing is an exchange – of trust and vulnerability, and of grunts and desire, but mostly of the electro-chemical polarities that attract masculine and feminine.
“I felt this electrical jolt – like a lightning bolt – shooting out of your clit and into my finger, where it traveled up my arm, across my chest, into my heart, down into my cock, and out my other arm, like a circuit, and then it just kept circulating for the rest of the OM,” said Lance, a guy who once stroked me while I was crashing at Jamie’s, and we were Sharing Frames after the stroking part, which isn’t quite as cringey as The Noticing, but is sort of in the ballpark.
The point is that something larger, magnetic and infinitely more mysterious happens when fingertip strokes clit in this specific way and inside of this container – something that doesn’t happen when I’m jerking myself off.
It’s the electro-chemical exchange that inspired me to try Orgasmic Meditation in the first place, back when I was cozy in a monogamous love thang, and my partner and I read Slow Sex together at a Colorado hot spring, and thus grooved on Nicole Daedone’s whole down with stimulation, up with sensitivity/awareness philosophy, and took to a daily OM practice.
“Achoo!” sneezed then boyfriend.
“Wow!” I said, shivering, because I felt his sneeze in my own body as palpably as if it were my own.
I liken it to Vipassana meditation, wherein the prolonged practice of scanning the body for sensation strips away the walls and shadows that obscure our hearts and our light and our genius. The practice of OMing strips away the walls and the density that obscure not only our connection to our own feeling nature, but to the shared feeling nature that conscious sexual exchange inspires when we know how to work with it.
“Ooh,” boyfriend said, when he hit a particularly sweet spot with his tongue during a post-OM canoodle. “I felt that one in my toes.”
“Do…more…that…” I instructed, palming his skull, trying to catch my breath, “…hnnnh!…”
But, it’s not just instances of Freaky Friday-like feeling-sharing that differentiates OMing from diddling myself. Orgasmic Meditation isn’t goal-oriented – there is no race toward climax. In fact, it’s not even a destination. Sure, it happens; I hear. I’ve yet to climax during an OM, and I have all of zero interest in doing so, and not just because I think it would be thoroughly embarrassing.
The magic is at the edge, which is where all magic lies, and – for me – OMing is the perfect set-up to play with that edge, to redirect the energy that threatens to undo me in a fit of trembles, spasms, shrieks and sensation, and to instead redirect it up my spine and into my head, where it dances between my third eye and my crown, and animates my entire body with a thousand and one lightning bolts exploding behind my eyelids and across my every meridian in fractalized bursts of psychedelia.
“UNNHHH!!” Josh sucks in his breath at the very same moment a jolt of electricity explodes in my upper cervical spine, and then mutters a thoroughly floored: “Whoah.”
“And, what’s in it for the guy?” Mom presses.
I can’t really say, not being a guy or having ever stroked, but that doesn’t stop me from rolling my eyes, and snorting, and saying “Mom, I already explained this,” because even though I’m a grown woman, there’s something about sharing time/space with my mother that inspires adolescent histrionics. “It strips away the layers of calcified density, and renders them more sensitive and available to experience their own sensation through less and less stimulation.”
Also, a lot of the guys in the community are spazzy dweebs who, if it weren’t for One Taste, wouldn’t likely see much pussy, let alone get to touch any, unless they were paying for it.
“Two minutes,” Josh says, alerting me to the impending close of our session with a pronounced shift in his touch – Downstroking, they call it, which is totally applicable when spread eagle and doused in coconut lube in The Nest, but kind of annoying when chatting with my friend over kale smoothies.
“You probably want to downstroke her before telling her you don’t want to work with her anymore,” Jamie advises.
I roll my eyes and vomit just the tiniest bit in the back of my throat, not because it’s not good advice, but because I’m still having a hard time getting used to my friend’s tendency to talk like a cult initiate.
“Time,” Josh says with a massive exhale, removing his hand from very, very tingly pussy, despite my clit’s silent pulsing pleas for him to come back, to stay awhile, to keep doing that thing he was doing with his finger for – like, I dunno…ever?
I exhale as Josh grounds me back into my body, and into the room, again mashing his hands atop my only slightly trembling thighs. He helps me up to a sitting position where I drape the now damp washcloth over my lady bits, and avail myself to the grand finale – the Sharing of Frames.
“There was this moment, when I saw, like, a drop of – um…well, your juices on the edge of your pussy, and – uh, well – when I did, I felt a lot of sensation in my cock.”
I think the point is to get us in the practice of communicating our turn on, and our feeling experience. It’s gotten easier, the Frame-Sharing, minus the moments when I realize, mid-OM, that I’m going to have to do it, and then I retreat to my head, scanning the practice for something noteworthy to speak to. That, and the fact that I don’t love talking to strangers about my turn-on, but – whatever – I’m a grown-up; I can deal.
“There was a moment when you pulled back on the pressure, and I found myself wanting to chase it, but instead chose to inhale into my clit, and found the connection I was craving through my own breath.”
And with that, we are complete.
It’s actually my favorite part of the whole experience, the leaving, the absence of lingering eye locks, of nervous heart flutters, of carefully couched farewells that may or may not allude to a deepening intimacy, and to future dalliances that so often never come to pass. I love the none of that. It’s honest. It’s clean. We have accomplished the business at hand – the touching of my pussy – and now that we are finished, I will be on my (way merrier) way.
Back in Jamie’s kitchen, dinner is ready – kale salad with pumpkin seeds and tons of nutritional yeast.
“How was that?” Jamie asks, knowing smile hijacking her perpetually radiant face.
“Best. Friend. Ever.” I gush, proffering the world’s most grateful hug, feeling infinitely less suicidal and – dare I say – pretty darned good.
Dani Katz is the creator of the I Am Calendar 2015, a total astro/affirmation/badass birthday fest of all ’round awesomeness. You can find out more about her work here.
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