Watching and enjoying the women in this class pleasure themselves can be transformational if you are fully present. Be sure to breathe deeply. Remember, mindful erotic practice is the sexual medicine of the 21st century.
“The relative invisibility of women’s masturbation infects women’s consciousness about how they talk about, think about, and engage in masturbation,” writes Professor Breanne Fahs in a 2014 article in the Journal of Sex Research.
Self-Pleasuring for Self-Discovery: Some Reflections by Gayatri
Touching our own bodies for pleasure is generally considered something very private. In some cultures and religious philosophies it is even seen as a sin. Some people are of the opinion that you only masturbate when you have no other choice.
If we don’t know how to pleasure ourselves, how can we expect another human being to do it for us? If we’re not in touch with how we like to be touched, then how can we share our preferences for pleasure? If we don’t know orgasmic states within our own being, then how can we hope to go there with someone else?
If you would like to experience the aliveness that can come from making love to yourself, then here are a few suggestions for stellar self-pleasuring:
• Make the environment lovely for yourself. Even the simple act of lighting a candle can bring sacredness and specialness to the experience.
• Set an alarm for a specific length of time. Let this timing of the session support your explorations.
• Touch your whole body, not just your genitals.
• Play with different pressures, strokes, rhythms and speeds. Step away from your habitual way of touching yourself.
• Pay exquisite attention to what’s going on inside your body. Be with your sensations. Bring your attention back to your body when thinking and distractions arise.
• Breathe deeply and fully, allowing your body to open and expand into greater pleasure. Many people hold their breath when they get close to climax. If you stay conscious of your breathing, you will experience deeper pleasures and awakenings.
• Allow your body to move and undulate—even dance–rather than holding yourself rigid. Many people habitually tense their muscles as the energy builds.
• Experiment with touching your genitals and other parts of your body at the same time. I especially like to hold one hand on my heart as I pleasure myself.
• When you wish to move towards climax, go for it. Some folks clench their body into a “Big Draw” as an alternative type of orgasm. Others do a breathing meditation at orgasm: Inhale energy from the genitals to the top of the head and exhale the energy back to the genitals.
Although learning new ways of touching yourself may seem unusual at first, breaking sexual habits can open you to a whole new practice of pleasurable self-discovery.
Check out Gayatri’s self-loving contribution to the Women’s Studies Department.