by Maggie Kelly
In Buddha loving Boulder, CO I often hear the phrase ” We are spiritual beings having a human experience” and although I appreciate the transcendent perspective, the wildly loving WITCH in me is much more enlivened by this rephrasing: “We are magical beings unveiling the spark of creation within the human experience.”
In my world, this unveiling is the essence of magic. It’s also a consciousness of surrendering to the expansiveness of the present moment, feeling into sensations of aliveness, and connecting with my desire to align with the true, the good, and the bodaciously beautiful! In other words, spirituality for me is an experience of embracing light and life through a descent into embodied awareness.
One way that I cultivate and honor this relationship to life force is through my Shamanic Self Pleasure Practice.
As a Sexological Bodyworker and Coach, I highly value the potential of self pleasure to connect to our Awakened Wild Expression and offer 5 practice steps here to journey into self love and creativity at its core!
Before we start I’d love to illuminate two important dimensions of the practice of Shamanic Self Pleasure. First: when working with the body and mind in relationship to sexuality it’s important to differentiate between sensuality and eroticism.
Sensuality relates to our nervous system arousal as it happens in response to feedback from our five senses.
In sensual experience there’s both the down-regulation which is an activation of the parasympathetic nervous system (think deep touch, slow breath, and feelings of relaxation) and there’s also the up-regulation or activation of the sympathetic nervous system (think pinching, fast breath, and feelings of excitement). Arousal flows and pendulates between these two poles of experience.
In contrast to sensuality, eroticism is arousal produced by the mind. Images, thought, fantasies, greatly affect our nervous system as well. As an example of how this works, consider great erotic writing that you’ve read. Alternatively, just take a moment and imagine someone you are sexually attracted to and notice what shifts in your body and awareness.
In the practice of Shamanic Self Pleasure we are going to work with both sensuality and eroticism, but because of our specifically shamanic intention, instead of invoking a mundane fantasy (for example, imaging the arousing image of a shirtless bad ass wizard wearing leather pants) we are going to use visualization to journey into our underworld to meet and learn from our Awakened Wild Self.
1. Set Intention & Cross the Threshold
For this practice I invite you to deliberately create a ceremonial space in whatever way feels aligned with your creative expression. I enjoy acknowledging the four elements, lighting candles, putting on my pink silk robe, creating a beautiful nest, setting down my coconut oil, and anointing myself with perfume. Also important: setting the exterior space sets intention and affects our internal landscape. It’s key to take time to create a container to serve you and your practice.
While settling into your space you can lay down, close your eyes, breath into your belly and connect inwards. Begin imagining a tree with a door, the marking of a threshold down into the underworld.
Now before crossing, take a moment and leave something behind. This may be a limiting belief about sexuality, a sensation of tension, whatever it is choose to let go of something that no longer serves you, then visualize yourself opening the door and crossing it.
2. Follow the Flow of Arousal Down the Rabbit Hole
Now here comes the fun part! As you imagine yourself descending down into the earth begin to explore pleasurable touch. My guidance here is listen to your instinctual pleasure body. What in this moment feels good?
A place to start is massaging your whole body using different qualities of touch. Also play with your breath, make sounds, and move and stretch in ways that feel delicious and nourishing!
This a time of energetic cultivation, opening, and deepening. You may explore genital touch, you may not, the intention here is to focus on embodied pleasure in whatever way that means to you.
3. Meet with your Awakened Wild Self
Now that we’ve cultivated our arousal, visualize yourself descending into a setting or place out in nature where you will meet your Awakened Wild Expression. It may be deep in the woods, in a cave, in the water.
Let the image arise and take in your surroundings. Notice what’s in this natural habitat. What supports the life here?
Then imagine your A. W. E. coming into view. Is it an animal, a creature, a person? Who is he/she? How do he/she stand and express themselves? Connect to their energy and become curious!
4. Celebrate Your Wildness!
Having just met your A.W.E it is now time to embody it! Like lovers, merge with that energy and imagine either stepping into it or it stepping into you.
Boom! How does it feel? How does this energy want to move through the vehicle of your body? I love to get up and dance intensely, sometimes sing, but every time I feel a surge of arousal and heat through my system.
How do you embody your A.W.E? What do you desire? Explore, discover, and express yourself!
5. Savor, Surrender, and Give Thanks
After we’ve journeyed to the apex of expression it’s time for down regulation and integration. Slowing down your movement and breath come back to a resting position and place one hand on the heart another on the belly.
Take moment and give thanks to this energy that animates you, that animates life. Imagine something that you’d like to offer it to honor your connection. You can take time here and savor and receive the gifts of this practice. Then slowly open your eyes and wake up renewed to the present moment.
I deeply hope this practice serves you. For me it is truly an expression of Abundance and Havingness Expansion. I’ll leave you with my favorite quote from Wizard of Oz to contemplate.
Glinda: For the record, I knew you had it in you all along.
Glinda: No. Better than that. Goodness.
About the Autor:
Maggie Kelly is a Somatic Sexologist and Transformation Coach at Blissful Embodiment. As a passionate wielder of magic from an early age, she works with people to inspire intimacy, intuition, and radical self love through embodiment. A coach by day and burlesque performer by night, to many she is also known as Heidi Hellcat. You can connect with Maggie through Facebook and her Website.
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