“I want to make Tantra yoga as main stream as Hatha yoga, and orgasms as much a part of women’s self care as brushing our teeth,” I bravely declared ten years ago in a community circle, where we were each asked to share our personal mission.
The tent went silent, followed by laughter. I was as shocked by the reaction as I suppose people were by my statement. I thought women’s pleasure was surely as important as anything.
In his book, A New Earth, Eckhart Tolle talks about the “feminine pain body,” where we hold all of our past suppressed experiences and emotions that were too overwhelming to feel when they occurred.
He goes on to say that this collective pain is particularly heightened in women during our moon cycles, and if we were to embrace our discomfort, rather than simply tolerate it or numb it away with chemicals, women could help heal the pain body of the world.
When I read this passage years ago, I had lots of questions. The first one was why did Mr. Tolle link the pain body to the feminine and specifically to women’s reproductive organs and cycles? Was this the pain body headquarters? Or was he just using women’s menses as an example of an opportune time to process pain?
In my earlier blogs, I’ve spoken about my belief that women, being the vessels through which life is birthed from spirit into form, hold both the memory of our wholeness (with God, Creation, Self) and our first memory of separation in our sex organs.
Is it possible then, that along with holding the collective pain of separation, our female sex organs also house a pleasure body ?
If so, is it possible that this pleasure body could be the healer of the pain body? And that by exercising it like a muscle and making it stronger than its painful counterpart, we might shift into a higher vibration of being?
Interestingly, when I did a google search, though I found hundreds of books on how to work with our shadows and heal our pain, I found very little written about the pleasure body.
Eckhart Tolle also points out the correlation between pain and the past-and pain and the subconscious mind, stating that all present painful experiences are actually based on subconscious beliefs formed from the past.
We hold onto these beliefs, like “Pleasure is bad” or “If I experience pleasure, I am bad” or “I am not worthy of love and pleasure” (can you see how they build on one another?)- thinking we are protecting ourselves from feeling past experiences and emotions that were too overwhelming to feel when they occurred. But this protection is only temporary because our subconscious beliefs keep the unfelt experiences and emotions frozen in our bodies-or according to Mr. Tolle, our pain body.
Though many of us on the personal growth path may no longer think we are holding onto these beliefs-widespread sexual ignorance, dissatisfaction and dysfunction-all of which feed a record high divorce rate, on top of worldwide sexual exploitation and violence (especially towards women)-are evidence that we still have much work to do around our experience of our human sexuality.
In his book, Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself, Joe Dispenza writes that by the time we reach middle age, ninety five percent of who we are is a series of subconscious programs that have become automatic, which includes our thinking and how we make decisions-which means we are making choices and living from our conscious minds only five percent of the time. And yes this includes enlightened Californians.
The good news, says Dispenza says is human beings have an incredible capacity to change our minds. The catch is changing our minds requires great effort-at least when it comes to the subconscious mind, which can only be changed through the body-and why perhaps Eckhart Tolle calls it the pain body rather than the pain mind.
In his four steps to rewiring the brain, neuroscientist Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz claims that the only way to change old thought patterns and behaviors is to replace them with new, completely different ones-which means consistently thinking and doing the opposite of what feels normal or preferential, thus consciously self-directing changes in our brains.
In my commitment to my sexual practice, I can feel my pleasure body opening, my pleasure muscles strengthening, and the tightly tangled muscles of my pain body slowly softening and releasing.
I experience this shift not just in my body, but as a consciousness expansion in my whole life, in my whole being’s capacity for joy- which is a sustained state of pleasure.
A year ago I would have never believed all my debt would be paid off. I would’ve never believed I would have a hundred grand in the bank. I would’ve never believed I could make a living doing work that so deeply fulfills my soul. I would’ve never believed I could be so cared for and loved by Life.
I do now. And to think this is just the beginning!
I can assure you, I didn’t meditate my way here. While meditation has helped me to accept and on occasion transcend the pain body through a peaceful mind, my sexual practice is exponentially helping me to awaken a whole new ground of being through the pleasure body.
I see the Pleasure Path as the next wave of humanity’s conscious evolution.