"In Tantrism, the first thing is having the experience of touch, of profound contact with things, with the universe, without mental commotion. Everything begins there: touching the universe deeply. When you touch deeply, you no longer need to let go. That occurs naturally."
~ Daniel Odier
I must admit I have been avoiding writing about Touch for some time. I have been swimming in the duality of the fierce longing to share this work with the world and a tender preciousness that does not want to falter in sharing the depths and intimacy of this practice. With FOSTA and it is even becoming banned and censored to speak about these things; oh what a time we live in that we cannot share freely about that which may help to heal and liberate so many of us. I feel there may be traces of shame bubbling up from the collective Western stories we have around touch and intimacy and a self-consciousness in sharing so freely about something that we sequester away to our most intimate relationships. And yet it feels vital and important to honor these lineages and this work by speaking about the ceremony and potentiality of ritual touch and healing massage.
There is something that opens in the space of a “sacred spot” massage (see definition of sacred spot massage below) that is inexplicable, yet is the core of this practice. We arrive and receive in a place of deep ceremony, the palpable presence of the Divine right there alongside our very human bodies, naked and stripped bare. We transfigure, connecting to that holy heart, that place that knows the wholeness beyond separation, the place that is always singing us home in each pulse and each breath, the place that pours over with a Love that is beyond our human understanding, a love so fierce and so full that we can only comprehend it as empty; this place that is home to the Divine within, mirrored and echoed through the Divine all around. And from here we connect with another, from here we touch the other, from here we dance (Tandava) allowing the consciousness of this love to pour through our bodies. We open to this (Spandha) to make love to the one who is receiving, not by crossing over the boundaries of this practice into physical love making, but rather we allow this Divine consciousness to “make love” in the sense that it fills the space between our bodies, guides our hands to deliver the soothing balms of loving touch, to the awakening of our life force through erotic touch, and all that we need in between. What we ultimately experience in these sessions is the presence and direct transmission of being held in complete wholeness and total love. And what occurs when we experience this is often the rising into awareness and/or releasing through the soma, the stories we carry or wounds that we hold onto that believe that we are cut off from, separate from, unworthy or undeserving of knowing and receiving this (w)holy type of love. And this is the type of Love that brings us to our knees with its capacity to heal all things.
Beyond this beautiful ineffable dance of I have done my best to paint a picture of above, there are real tangible benefits to this practice that are echoed through the body, not just the esoteric. Through the (sexual) energy that guides this practice we are able to access emotional and physical trauma that has been locked away and inscribed into our bodies. We (the practitioner) hold a safe and sacred container to simply witness and be with whatever (trauma) arises. The receiver guides their own experience of healing and is able to create new and positive evidence of being able to safely access these memories, feel them, release them through breath, sound, movement, emoting, and return to a regulated nervous system state. When we can go through this Process fully we are able to move from the Fear/Immobility cycle (see diagram below) to a place of creative self-regulation where we are able to rest, restore, regulate and be in receptivity to our lived experience (sympathetic vs. parasympathetic nervous system).
See trauma rewires our brains and nervous systems into states of separation, disassociation, disconnection, and pain. It has us develop stories that glue onto us as false identities that sadly parts of us believe are deeply true. And in this process of healing and coming back home to the body we get to face and heal the stories and questions of “how can we be separate from the Love that we are?”. “How can we be unworthy of this type of love that is not only our birth rite, but the stuff we are made of?” Through trauma we are temporarily cut off from our capacity to feel fully (disassociation) and led to believing these stories which keep us away from our innate ability to heal ourselves and the joys, gifts, and pleasures of embodying our lives fully.
And this is not just an individual experience or healing journey, we live in a collective culture of disassociation. We are stuck in a capitalist system that thrives on us being cut off from our human bodies and its needs. We exist in a society that prizes efficiency and doing, over our capacity to be with ourselves and other. Our western world that demeans and exploits the bodies of those who are different races, sizes, abilities, sexuality, and gender expressions than that of the dominant/dominator. And our sweet mama Earth, is crying out and dying because we no longer touch her with reverence and love.
I truly believe that to choose to heal our trauma through the power of Touch is an act that is far greater than ourselves and ripples out into the collective.
So please choose Touch.
And know that Touch can be simple. While I love and practice personally and professionally the art of sacred spot and healing massage, it took me a long time to be open to this practice. I spent years having to work on re-inhabiting my body after experiencing traumas that took me out of it. And during that time I wish I could have whispered to myself then to “take the pressure off”, to “start small”, and that “ultimately (your) my self-practice would be the foundation of everything”. I didn’t have the voice of another human reassuring me of this, I fumbled my way through with humbly the voice of Spirit and something larger guiding me. And so I want to tenderly remind you right now, start small. Developing your own practice of touch is everything, because one day if you choose to receive a Tantric massage, your own knowing of your body will get to be the guide for your experience. You will overtime develop a deep sense of sensual and sexual sovereignty; you will create your own experience of radical embodiment; you’ll find your deep somatic voice of knowing. And in all of this you will discover the exact medicine you need!
I encourage you to explore what modalities of Touch speak to you. You will likely find over time that your practice changes and that the voice of your soma/body will guide you to new places and modalities as it is time.
Here are some simple practices you can explore to start:
Tapping (start on the heart)
Giving yourself a butterfly hug (crossing your arms across chest and squeezing each shoulder)
Lying on the Earth with a hand on heart and hand on belly, noticing the breath
Dry brushing before showering or self-massage with oil or body lotion after showering
Free dancing and slow movement following your instincts
Receiving a Sacred Spot massage and gifting yourself the space to feel fully
To touch and be touched is to experience your inherent worthiness and safety
To touch and be touched is to heal the wounds of separation
To touch and be touched is to dismantle the stories of trauma (personally and collectively)
To touch and be touched is to declare your sovereignty and this wisdom of your body
To touch and be touched is to know the Love that you are
Thank you for letting these words Touch you however they have.
Thank you for choosing the courageous act of feeling and to heal through Touch.
With infinite tenderness,
To learn more about ways to directly experience and train in the healing power of Touch with us through Embodied Erotic
Sacred Spot was first developed in the 1980’s by Andro Andreas Rothe in Germany and further developed by Annie Sprinkle, Mantak Chia, and Joseph Kramer. As such, it is a modern addition to Tantra. The two outcomes of this technique are healing and awakening. We harness the power of our sexual energy to contact and release our traumas, creating more space inside and expanding our awareness to the full bliss that is available to us. It’s one of the most powerful modalities we’ve encountered and we truly believe in the transformational potential of this work.