Being a "pleasure artist" is a natural human talent. Tantra teaches that the body is a temple and one of its gifts is the ability to feel pleasure through the senses--sight, sound, smell, touch and taste. While it requires practice, pleasure is an art worth developing. Some of the skills that enhance pleasure are; a finely tuned sensory awareness, the capacity to enjoy pleasure for extended periods of time and presence. How much pleasure do I allow into your life?
According to women’s health expert Dr. Christiane Northrup, the author of Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom, pleasure is crucial. It is an essential nutrient that you need every day to maintain and/or regain your health. Pleasure releases health-promoting hormones. She suggests you can make the world a better place by giving yourself pleasure.
Pleasure like any art requires practice. Why? Because we live in a culture that rewards hard work and judges those that pursue pleasure. Do you remember being a kid lost in a moment of pleasure, when suddenly you were being yelled at to go and do your chores? How many times has this scene played out in your life? Eventually, you got the message that it was not o.k. to play too long or enjoy pleasure too much.
That’s why practicing pleasure may bring up resistance. People often associate pleasure with guilt. You may wonder, "Am I being selfish or indulgent?" If resistance arises, be with it. Sit and embrace it, like you would a wounded child. Allow the feelings to arise and express them in healthy ways, such as through movement, art or sharing them with a friend. As you release the resistance, you may discover you have an even greater capacity for experiencing pleasure than you did before.
Integrate pleasure into your life. Let your senses be indulged- feel the sun on your skin, taste your favorite fruit, smell the scent of flowers in the yard and listen to the sounds of the world around you. When you commit to practicing pleasure regularly, you will become an expert at it.
Here are 10 Keys for Practicing the Art of Pleasure:
1)Practice being present and aware in each moment, instead of living in the past or future. The present moment is the only place pleasure can happen.
2)Open your body fully. Breathe into your belly, let go of tension. Do this several times a day and you will begin to notice if you start to contract.
3)Take pleasure breaks often during the day. Discover the simple pleasures that you have been overlooking. Learn what gives you pleasure.
4)Hone your sensory awareness. Focus on a particular sense and see how much you can engage and expand it. Keep a sensory awareness journal. See how much you can increase your awareness and capacity for pleasure.
5)See through fresh eyes. Be curious and innocent, like a child.
Children find wonder in the world. See the mystery all around you.
6)Challenge yourself to feel pleasure in unlikely situations, like while stuck in traffic or sitting through a long meeting. If you notice negative thoughts, pause, and make a conscious choice to refocus your attention. Focus on your breathing, let go of resistance and begin to circulate your breath throughout your body, expanding your aliveness. Feel your energy beginning to flow beyond your physical body. See how expansive you can be.
7)Be generous to yourself and others. Give yourself a 3-5 minute mini-massage at least once a day. Recognize the power of touch and find a friend who wants to trade massages. Hug often, share touch with those open to receiving it.
8)Eat slowly and allow yourself to savor each bite. Food can be erotic.
9)Look deeply into your beloved’s eyes, see beyond form and personality. Know they are the Divine, in form. Let them be a mirror for you to see the Divine in yourself as well.
10) Finally, celebrate your body by giving yourself orgasms. Orgasms heal. They release tension and produce hormones that balance the body-mind. They also reset your electromagnetic field and give you a sense of well-being. When you orgasm regularly, you vibrate with pleasure. As you radiate pleasure, others feel it and begin to experience pleasure as well.
Practice these 10 Keys and notice how your life changes. The world is starving for joy and pleasure. You can’t make other people change, but you can change yourself. Through your willingness to practice pleasure, others will be inspired.
Crystal Dawn Morris, is a Certified SkyDancing Tantra Teacher, intimacy coach and healer. She teaches workshops, teleseminars and offers private coaching sessions in Sedona and Phoenix, AZ. She welcomes invitations to teach in your community and can create a course personalized to your needs. Learn about her events at: www.TantraForAwakening.com.