Wednesday, October 29, 2008

4 Keys to Keeping Your Heart Open in Challenging Times

Four Keys Keeping Your Heart Open in Challenging Times.
The past month has been a challenging time. The world economy has been at risk. The stock market has been bi-polar. The election is up for grabs. Fear is rampant in the media. In the face of all of this it is easy to have fear seep into your life and to close down your heart. I have experienced this personally and I have heard this over and over from people around me.

I don’t listen to TV or radio and seldom read the newspaper because I don’t want to be affected by the fear-mongering media. Still, I found myself slipping into a dark place and feeling a bit lost. In part, this is because of my sensitivity to the energy around me. In part, to too some healing I was doing on my inner child. In part, it was to Mercury being in retrograde. In part, I was reacting to an important relationship in my life. My mind became filled with negative thoughts and the need to figure out what was going on. My heart closed down and my inner child felt abandoned. When our heart closes down and our mind is feed by fear it is easy to get lost in the darkness.

I usually move through these kinds of challenges pretty quickly, in a few hours or a few days. This past month it took almost two weeks before I was able to see the clouds begin to part. Even as this was happening my witness was watching and seeing how stuck I was, and offered me love. As I became aware of that love I was finally able to recognize that my heart was closed. As soon as I felt into my heart and began to open it the clouds lifted and the sun shone on my face once again.

Here are four keys to keeping your heart open in challenging times:
1) Awareness is the first key. Check in with your heart every morning and night and notice if it is open or closed or somewhere in between.
2) Breathe into your heart. Rub your hands together and send love into them. When they begin to get hot place them over your heart and take the love into the cells of your body and your being. Let the love expand as you breathe it in.
3) Offer gratitude for all you have. Appreciate the abundance in your life and be generous with others less fortunate than you. Feel compassion for them and send love out to those that are homeless, hungry, sick, or in trouble.
4) Here is another practice I find helpful. It is from ancient Sanskrit prayer called the Gayatri, which I am paraphrasing here. Either go outside or imagine the sun shining into your heart and address the sun in this way:
You who are the source of light energy,
Whose rays illuminate the whole world,
Please illuminate my heart so that
I too may do Your work.

I hope you find these tools helpful.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Importance of Healthy Boundaries

How do you create healthy boundaries in your relationships?

I was sharing with a friend today the about the importance of boundaries. This was a new concept to him. One of the most important things I teach in my Tantra classes is the importance of sharing your desires, fears and boundaries at the beginning of an exchange. I call this creating a bubble. Boundaries are critical because where two people’s healthy boundaries meet is where intimacy happens. Boundaries keep us present. When we know where our boundary is we can move right to the edge of it with full commitment. If we aren't sure of our boundary then it is easy to both, play it safe or over step it. Boundaries are dynamic and change from moment to moment, so it is important to stay aware of them.

Here is an outline of the practice. For a complete description see Margot Anand's, Art of Sexual Ecstasy.

Making a Bubble

Seated across from one another, begin with a heart salutation- the acknowledgment of the divine in each other.

Then create a bubble around yourselves to call yourselves into the present moment. Do this with your intention and by using your arms to define the bubble.

Then, take things out of the bubble that don't serve you in this moment (past, distraction, anger etc.) Next, bring things into the bubble that will enhance your connection (love, willingness, presence etc.)

Next, offer an appreciation to the other person (I honor your heart...)

After that, share your intentions, fears and boundaries related to the practice while the other person listens without judgment or commentary.

End with a heart salutation. The bubble you've created allows you to feel the support of the sacred as you continue with your practice.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The Dance of Shakti and Shiva

My first introduction to this work was in a workshop called the Yin and Yang of Ecstasy, taught by Margot Anand and Jim Benson. That was 5 years ago. I have spent the last 5 years exploring the inner and outer dance of the masculine and feminine energies.

I am still learning how to gracefully "be" in the dance without stepping on his toes or getting my toes stepped on. At times I am in the flow of life, both with myself and my relationships. At other times I still get a bit lost and/or confused. What I have learned, is to see my patterns and recognize the old beliefs much quicker. I also take responsibility for my experience without blaming it on him.

The challenge I have been dealing with recently is, what to do when the man disappears into his cave. I know I should just leave him alone in there, until he comes out on his own. However it sometimes seems like he has forgotten I even exist. So, after what feels to me like a long time, I find myself standing at the mouth of his cave wondering, "Is he ever coming out of there?" This is especially true when I am in a place of wanting his support because I am going through a challenging time. I remind myself that life is a process. I continue to learn how to accept myself, love what is and feel gratitude for my commitment to being whole.

I am passionate about this work. I will be co-facilitating a weekend workshop on this topic with Micheal Pooley Nov. 21-23 in Sedona, AZ.
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Friday, October 3, 2008

ASEP Conference

ASEP, stands for the Association of Sexual Energy Professionals. They just had their third conference in Phoenix, Sept.11-14. I was only able to attend Saturday’s sessions. The morning presentations focused on the legal issues that can affect some people working in the profession and ways to minimize prosecution. Clearly we need to educate people about the importance and benefits of our work and get the laws rewritten so sexual healing and education are not confused with prostitution.

In the afternoon session there was a presentation on Quodoushka’s level of orgasm. I appreciated how Q uses the different elements to describe orgasms. This was followed by a panel discussion on about how to define orgasm, the benefits of it and the need for research on it. I found the panel to be diverse and knowledgeable. This was my first conference and I will be returning next year for the whole program.
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The 3 Secrets to Being a Juicy Woman

Giving and receiving love is what makes us juicy and the world needs more juice.”
Crystal Dawn Morris

The 3 Secrets to Being a Juicy Woman

1.) Be your own best lover and beloved. Self Pleasure at least 3 times a week; take your time - make love to yourself the way you would like your lover to make love to you. Relax in the bath and as you touch your body give each part a blessing. Appreciate your body and all that it does for you.

2.) Expand your awareness through your senses. Take 1- 2 minutes out of every hour and focus on a different sense as you let it expand. Let the wind caress your face. Smell the scent of rain, food or even garbage. Look at the world with curiosity as if you just landed on this planet for the first time. Listen to the sounds of the city or of nature. Touch the surface of your desk, chair, or a tree and image it is your lover’s body- then explore it with awe and reverence. Chew your food slowly, savoring each bite, as you might if you knew it was your last time to eat this particular dish.

3.) Offer gratitude for the miracle of life. See the world with new eyes. Imagine all buildings are temples, all people are divine beings and all sounds are mantras. Notice beauty in small unexpected places. Make an offering to the earth for nourishing you. Love life just as it is.