Good Energy Massage

Integrative therapy for the Body, Mind and Spirit.

Healing the Fear of Intimacy

Are you sick of being afraid of intimacy? Are you ready to have the wonderful experience of emotional intimacy in your life?

Why would someone be afraid of intimacy? Don’t we all want to feel close and connected with someone?

Yes, of course we want that, but there are very real fears that keep us from opening to emotional intimacy in a primary relationship.

The Fears

What is the first fearful thought you think when you think of feeling close to someone?

“I’m going to be rejected or I’m going to be abandoned.”
“I’m going to be smothered, engulfed, controlled. I will lose myself.”
“If I lose the person I love through death, I can’t handle the pain.”

These are the fears that are behind the fear of intimacy. It’s not the intimacy itself, but the bad things that can happen that are sometimes part of an intimate relationship.

These fears come from the pain of having been rejected, or of having lost ourselves in a relationship, or of having too much loss without knowing how to handle grief. These experiences may have been so painful that you are afraid to experience them again.

Is this pain inevitable in an intimate relationship? Yes and no. The pain of rejection or engulfment is NOT inevitable. The pain of losing a loved one through death may happen and is always a huge challenge, but would you really rather live a life without love than face this challenge?

The Healing

The key to healing the fears is developing your loving adult self.

For example, you are in a relationship with someone you really love. One day, out of nowhere, your partner gets angry with you, shuts down to you, or threatens to leave you.

If you are operating from the ego, wounded part of yourself, your reactions might be:

“What did I do wrong?” (Taking it personally and feeling rejected).
“What do I have to do to fix this?” (The beginning of losing yourself).

Then you might also get angry or shut down to avoid feeling rejected, or you might scurry around trying to make things right, taking responsibility for your partner’s feelings. Out of your fear, you would try to control your partner.

If you are operating from your loving adult self, your responses might be:

“My partner is closed right now and trying to blame me or punish me for something. My heart hurts from being treated this way, but I know that his or her behavior has nothing to do with me. I cannot cause another person to act this way, nor am I responsible for how he or she chooses to behave. If my partner leaves, I will feel very sad, even heartbroken, but I can manage this feeling with deep compassion and tenderness toward myself. Now, I wonder how I can best take loving care of myself until he or she opens up?”

As a loving adult, you would not take your partner’s behavior personally and feel rejected by it, nor would you give yourself up trying to get your partner to open up. You might ask your partner what’s wrong with an intention to learn, and if he or she opens up, then you can have a productive conversation. If not, then you would compassionately tend to your own heartache and do something loving for yourself – take a walk, call a friend, read a book, and so on.

You would not fear being left by your partner, as you would not be abandoning yourself. You would know that you will take loving care of yourself.

Developing your loving adult self is a process that takes consistent practice. When you shift your intention from trying to have control over another not rejecting you, to taking loving care of yourself, you gradually develop your loving adult. The more powerful your loving adult self is, the less you fear intimacy. You no longer fear rejection because you no longer take others’ behavior personally, and you no longer fear engulfment because you no longer give yourself up to avoid rejection. As a loving adult, you learn how to manage loss so that you don’t have to avoid love.

The Inner Bonding process is a powerful process for developing your loving adult. Practicing the 6 steps of Inner Bonding gradually leads you out of your fears of intimacy and into the ability to truly love yourself and take loving care of yourself, so that you can share love with others.

December 9, 2010 Posted by | Sacred Intimacy, Sexuality, Tantra | , | Leave a comment

Orgasm

Because orgasm and ejaculation tend to happen simultaneously in men, we often think they are the same thing. Understanding that they are not is the key to exploring ecstatic states.

Orgasm is described, even by sexologists, as just the all-of-a-sudden release of the sexual pressure that happens during arousal, followed by an intense relaxation. Sounds like ejaculation. Missing from this medical explanation is any understanding of what happens elsewhere in our multidimensional beings–that is, in our hearts, our souls, our minds. Orgasm doesn’t happen just in the pelvis. Studies show changes in brain waves, for instance. Muscles all over the body tense and relax, emotions arise.

Some orgasms are more powerful than others. Sometimes we are seeking a simple release–we are feeling sexual tension, and we want to get rid of it. The resulting orgasm may be a bit of a thrill, and it is certainly pleasurable, but it is a pelvic sneeze compared with full-tilt, openhearted orgasm.

The French phrase for orgasm means “the little death.” When we are in an orgasmic state, time seems to stop. We experience something transcendent and powerful. We may feel a sense of clarity, losing our sense of self-consciousness, living only in this present moment.

In this ecstatic state we let go of the ego. Our day-to-day anxieties no longer seem so important and we let go of our obsession with the self. We let go of our sense that we are separate from those around us; that’s one reason why this ecstatic state is especially powerful for those who are in love. In this orgasmic state we are simply present, alone or with a lover, fully alive and connected with everything that is. It is a powerful spiritual experience, a miracle in itself. Small wonder that so many religions seem to fear sexuality and do everything they can to control it!

To be able to let go during sex and to savor this sense of transcendence is one of life’s great joys.

Let’s talk about how it increase your body’s capacity for pleasure and how to open yourself more fully to this experience.

Bodies which are full of life are more capable of ecstasy than those which are half-asleep. Exercise of at least a mild sort helps. Sex isn’t a marathon, but if you spend your life stuck behind a desk and are a couch potato at home and have trouble climbing a flight of stairs without getting winded, you’re not likely to feel fully awake and at home in your body.

When having sex either with a partner or solo, let go of any goal other than to feel your body, feel pleasure and connect deeply with yourself or your partner. If you find yourself getting distracted by concerns about erections, what your partner is thinking, how you are doing, etc., notice them and let these thoughts go; be in the moment.

Focus on pleasure rather than orgasm as a goal in itself. Let go of any goal whatsoever. Are you tightening your muscles and holding your body tense? Let go. Relax. Breathe. Savor sensations and delights for their own sake. There is no hurry. What else could be more important than what you are doing right now?

When you start to cum, stay relaxed and breathing. This allows the sensations and rhythms of your body to increase and reverberate inside of you, and it greatly prolongs the pleasure. Keep breathing! Some of us tend to hold our breaths or to breathe very shallowly as we approach climax. Doing so shuts down sensation. In fact, half the pleasure some men’s orgasms comes from simply relaxing their too-tense bodies.

A friend recently shared with me that when he starts to ejaculate, he recites to himself the Buddhist prayer of compassion and loving kindness: “May all beings be happy. May all beings be free.” In doing so, he shifts his consciousness and expands his vision.

Our culture enshrines the idea of simultaneous orgasm. That can be fun if it happens spontaneously, but working to that end can turn sex into, well, work. Consider instead what can happen when you cum at different times. You can be your partner’s witness–seeing him in this moment of transcendence, truly being there for him. He can be there for you, free from his own need to do anything other than just be with you; that’s magic enough.

The time following orgasm is sacred time, sometimes referred to as “afterglow.” Enjoy it, whether you are by yourself or with someone else. Notice what thoughts, even visions, come to you. Notice what you are feeling. Don’t be in a big hurry to clean up. Stay where you are. If you have been making love to yourself, this can be a useful time to simply enjoy the feelings of peace and openness. If you are with a partner, this gentle, open time can be a wonderful opportunity to affirm your love for one another.

The openness that many of us feel after orgasm may also bring up negative feelings. Perhaps you realize that the person you just shared this experience with was someone with whom this level of intimacy was more awkward than you expected, or perhaps old messages about sex-and-shame made an unwelcome visit. This may be an opportunity for you to learn something about yourself.

John R. Ballew, M.S., is a licensed professional counselor in private practice in Atlanta. He specializes in issues related to coming out, sexuality, and relationships, spirituality and career. He can be reached via the web at http://www.bodymindsoul.org

December 9, 2010 Posted by | Sexuality, Tantra, Tantric Therapy | , , | Leave a comment

Celebrating the Body Erotic- with Body Electric. November 13-14 2010

As the local coordinator I wanted to invite you to attend the work of  BE. The next local workshop will be held November 13-14  2010 . For more information please visit the website BodyElectric and then give me a call.

A first step in your exploration into your erotic potential. CBE involves the mind, the body and the heart in a series of exercises that use breathing, stretching and touching. Many men are searching for a more meaningful connection to themselves and to others. When they take responsibility for their erotic education, they realize how much there is to learn about awakening the erotic energy that lies within all of us. They begin to realize the satisfaction that comes from learning how to both give and receive pleasure. The workshop focuses on the entire body and is conducted in a setting that is playful, safe and honoring. The benefits of this work are:

  • The participant gains greater acceptance of himself as an erotic being,
    both physically and mentally.
  • He discovers ways to develop a more satisfying erotic relationship with others.
  • He becomes more aware of spiritual dimensions in his erotic explorations.

Celebrating the Body Erotic is a full two-day clothes-off workshop (9am-7pm) for those who are ready to vigorously explore new levels of feeling, both within themselves and within a community of men.

August 11, 2010 Posted by | Body Electric, Breath, Energy, Exploration, Healing, Local Events, Massage, Sexuality, Taoist Erotic Massage, Workshops | , , , | Leave a comment

Pleasure and The Creative Power of Sexual Energy

My friend Ian gives a great talk about Tantra and Sacred Sexuality. He explains what we mean my the Masculine and Feminine. Thank you Ian for sharing this video.

December 15, 2009 Posted by | Energy, Sexuality, Tantra | , | Leave a comment