Monday, January 4, 2010

Suzie Heumann

Sex And The Memory of Sexual Experience

Recent scientific research is beginning to investigate the relationships between experience and the memories of experience. Researchers are seeing that certain areas of the brain light up depending on the thoughts, actions and experiences of a person. Detailed maps of the brain now exist for the repeated patterns that we human's experience. There are precise regions of the brain that light up when we see our child or grandchild. Everyone has similar patterns with slight variations that depend on how you feel about that child or grandchild. The rush of 'love' chemicals; dopamine, oxytocin, endorphins, opiates and other neurotransmitters, fill our body and brain quickly to produce the incre dible feelings o f love and attachment that are involved in the profound moment when that child's eyes light up upon seeing you and hugging you.

Like any event, if this series of actions happens a few times, the solidifying effect in your body/brain becomes codified and remains. If you come across a picture o f that child, and the memory of the happy face and hug has the opportunity to become visceral, you can experience the same 'rush' though you may be sitting by yourself half way across the world. The same exact regions of your brain are lighting up as they did when the real event happened. That's why we can cry at the drop of a hat sometimes or smile when nothing but a fond memory traces our mind. And we can experience even more physical manifestations during these memories too. You only have to recall a very bad memory or experience, to 'feel' it all over again in your body.

Our memories dictate how we will feel about a similar situation because our brain and body is coded from past experience. If you are a person who has had a series of unfortunate or 'bad' experiences with intimacy, relationship or sexuality, these memories are codified in your brain/body. You probably relate to them as 'real' and consider that they will always be a part of you. Scientists are discovering that this isn't true. Our brains are much more 'plastic' than they ever understood. But how do we change our mind/body experien ces, and memories of the experiences, so that we can have a fresher, ne wer outlook? How do we shift if we're so plastic?

One of the tenants of neo-Tantra is just say 'Yes' to everything! While I actually don't advocate for that, especially for beginners, I do believe that saying yes sometimes, with a calculated risk assessment, is a very good thing. When you say yes to something that is risky you are being brave and you are probably about to have an experience that will make a shift in your perspective, especially if you make the decision to go forward consciously. That shift has the potential to lead you out of a negative feedback loop and into a more balanced attitude about the past experiences that do not feel so good now. This takes courage to change.

Scientists are beginning to understand that it takes very little brain 're-wiring' to make changes in our brains but the 'little' has to be pretty big to make the c hange. In other words, risk, boundary breaking and most importantly trust has to occur in order to make the profound changes that are needed. So if you have had some not-so-pleasant experiences with intimacy, or maybe reaching an orgasmic state, then a whole new way of approaching the situation may cause a break through to occur. Your brain/body can make a profoun d change for the better.

Many people have done this during experiences with skilled teachers, healers and workshop leaders in the Tantra community. Sometimes it's difficult and sometimes it happens easily. There's no guarantee ever but one thing that is assured is that the door will open to the opportunity to see things differently; to understand that our brains, bodies and memories are not frozen in us but malleable and changeable. Old memori es can be transformed and new ones can grow and nourish us more fully.

On a personal level, I believe that the mind, body and 'spirit' manifest powerfully within us. They work so tightly together that it is a small wonder that mode rn science hasn't made more discoveries about their interconnectedness than it has in recent years. It makes me wonder if we will be able to keep up emotionally, educationally and rationally with many of these discoveries. Reading and studying about scientific breakthroughs is an important part of basic education and many of the current fascinating discoveries would help us right now with personal growth and evolution. Yet it takes years for many of these discoveries to come to light.

I know that scientists like to have proven results, beyond a d oubt, but in the fields of sexuality, spirituality, energy, quantum physics, meditation and neurology the many deductions that can be formed from the current science aren't being expressed, and speculated on, as much as I would like to see. Maybe speculative ideas are going on behind closed doors, in the academic institutions doing research in these areas, but I would like to hear more about them.

Kama Sutra the cross | Daily Loaf

The Cross could be said to be a variation of the Missionary position. The easiest way to achieve this position is through the missionary. The woman is instructed to lay on her back with her legs spread, while the man enters her in typical missionary fashion. Once in, the man then carefully spins his body around until he is lying across her body in criss-cross fashion.

On a scale of 1 to 10 how would you rate this position?
This woman gives this one a 9, while the man snubs it with a 5.

Did you have difficulty getting into the position?
Yes, the body was willing, but the penis wasn’t!

Did you feel like a pretzel?
If you ever wanted to know what it’s like to b end an erect penis into a pretzel, this is a good place to start. The motions are doable, but certain penis types are obviously going to work better.

Any recommendations on getting either in or out of this position
Follow the instructions. It’s actually easiest to enter your partner and then twist around, but once you get rocking and it slips out, you will have to decide if you want to try to maneuver it in from an angle, or give up and try something else.

How long did you last in the position?
If it was up to me it would have been no more than five minutes, but she liked it, so it was a full fifteen until her orgasm.

Enjoyment once you were in position (for the woman)
She loved it. She commented on the angle of my shaft hitting her just right, and she also liked the more shallow penetration, versus the full-on front that hits her deep.

Enjoyment once you were in position (for the man)
I enjoyed it most on behalf of her own enjoyment, but to judge the position itself, I would say it offered little enjoyment compared to some of t he really great Kama Sutra positions.

Was the position comfortable?
Man: No, not comfortable or relaxing… it fact it was slightly irritating.
Woman: Yes.

Would you consider this to be an intimate position (Why or why not)?
There is just no way this could be considered intimate. First of all, you have very little contact or connection to anything, other than a wall, ceiling, bed, feet, and side of your partner’s head. Second, if Papa ain’t happy, then he just ain’t happy, and that sucks for him!

Are you achy or sore after the fact?
Man: No
Woman: No

What did the position feel like?
She felt as if she was guiding a dildo into just the right spot (G-spot). From the guy’s perspective, I had little sensation, could not find a comfortable way to position myself, and a hard erection being stroked and twisted the wrong way is not as pleasant for some as it is for others.

Did she reach orgasm? Yes
Did he reach orgasm? No

Did it take longer than usual to reach orgasm?
Yes it did take her longer, but I could swear she did it on purpose.

Would you do this position again (why or why not)?
Hell no. You see there are guys with slightly sof t, curved penises and there are those with stiff straight erections. You really need to fit the bill for this motion to be successful. Not everybody is going to be able to do this. Also, there is an interesting correlation between masturbation practices and the curvature of your manhood. Years of stroking your yoke with either just your left or right has been shown to sometimes cause it to banana in one direction. Different strokes for different folks, I always say… this just wasn’t my stroke I guess!

Any suggestions to make the position more pleasurable - There is a compromise with this position tha t seems to work just as well. Instead of crossing at 90 degrees, try making it 45 or 35 degrees. This allows you to place one knee on the outside of her hip and the other between her legs, you get a similar, albeit less dramatic angle, and the average manhood can accommodate that much of an arc without a problem. Relationships are all about compromise my Grandpa used to say!

Healthy Relationships

In the simplest terms, a healthy relationship is one that makes you feel good about yourself and your partner. Not only do you enjoy being together, but you can express your true self, and allow your partner to do the same. All relationships are different, of course, but healthy ones have at least five important qualities in common. The acronym S.H.A.R.E. can help you remember these qualities.

Safety In a healthy relationship you feel safe. You don't worry that your partner will harm you physically or emotionally, and you don't feel inclined to use phy sical or emotional violence against your partner. You can try new things (such as taking a night class) or change your mind about something (such as engaging in a sexual activity that makes you feel uncomfortable) without fearing your partner's reaction.
* Honesty: You don't hide anything important from your partner, and can express your thoughts without fear of censure or ridicule. You can admit to being wrong. You resolve disagreements by talking honestly.
* Acceptance: You and your partner accept each other as yo u are. You appreciate your partner's unique qualities (such as shyness or emotionality). You don't try to "fix" them - if you don't like your partner's qualities, you may want to examine your motivations for being with them.
* Respect: You think highly of each other. You do not feel superior or inferior to your partner in important ways. You respect each other's right to have separate opinions and ideas. This doesn't mean you have to tolerate everything your partner does or does not do (such as refusing to get help for a drinking problem). Setting limits is a sign of self-respect.
* Enjoyment: A healthy relationship isn't just about how two people treat each other - it also has to be enjoyable. In a healthy relationship, you feel energized and alive in your partner's presence. You can play and laugh together. You have fu n.

The opposite of a healthy relationship is an abusive relationship. Such relationships involve control, fear, and lack of mutual respect. Typically, one partner does most of the controlling while the other cowers in resentment or fear. Signs of an abusive relationship include intimidation, name-calling, blaming, belittling, guilt-tripping, jealous questioning, and outright violence.

If you suspect you're in an abusive relationship, t here's a good chance you are. Perhaps you know deep down that you'd be better off without the relationship but are afraid to leave it. You may depend on your partner's income, you may fear being on y our own, or you may rationalize the relationship as "better than nothing." In the long run, however, an abusive relationship does far more damage to your self-esteem than the absence of a relationship (and the opportunity to find a healthy one).

You may think you have no options, but you almost certainly do. A social worker and/or counsellor can help you map out a strategy for leaving an abusive relationship and getting your own life back on track. Your doctor or local/regiona l sexual clinic can steer you toward appropriate counselling services.

Artist makes faux Chinese lacquer scenes from porn mags

Chinese-American artist Yu n Bai makes “porn flower” collages from adult magazine snippets. She laquers them together to create trompe l’oeil scenes that look like traditional mother-of-pearl tableaus at a distance. Up cl ose, however, you can see the dirty bits. Link to artist website. Use the pull-down menu to select “porn flowers,” and choose the heading marked “Sold” to see more.

Reasons Strip Clubs Can Spice Up Your Sex Life

It’s the threesome of foreplay — only there’s no touching involved. Every now and then, a couple will steal away to a night club for a few hours of arousal. In a few situations, it’s a festive Chippendales venue; but in most cases, it’s a dimly-lit, somber, reserved experience with all eyes on the women.Whether it’s a seedy hole in the wall or a high-class venue, scantily-clad women suggesting triple-X action is the theme of the show. Relegated as a male “pastime,” this world of table and lap dances is seen as his escape.So when his partner is willing to get in on the act, eyebrows are raised.

Why in the world would any "respectable" woman want to go to a strip club? Such old-fashioned speculation comes swiftly, but is easily met with the fact that times have changed.Plenty of women are all for a good striptease. In recent years, we’ve seen mothers and wives from coast to coast take to pole dancing, whether for exercise or to spice up their sex lives.For those not into this type of naughty, the appeal is hard to fathom. What exactly is the draw of this pleasure pursuit as a pair?

Couples are going to strip clubs because

1. There’s no work involved
Foreplay becomes a breeze even before you take your seat. Lovers often find themselves sexually excited at the mere prospect of going to a strip club. Yet this arousal goes far beyond pre-game show titillations, with lovers already anticipating what will happen once they get back home.

2. It’s a bonding experience
Sure, strip clubs don’t exactly bring on the warm fuzzies, but they raise the temperature in other ways. Lovers enjoy “sharing” the stripper, but staying focused on their union by touching and flirting with each other. This sex worker becomes a mutual object of desire that can have partners feeling closer, sexually speaking.

3. They like the power dynamic
It’s not PC to admit it, but some couples like that they’re the paying customer. Consciously or not, they’re into the sense that when they give the dancer money, they get to “own” her to some degree. The room full of naked gals is all about their pleasuring and nothing else.

4. The experience can make them feel sexier
By identifying with the stripper’s sexuality or desiring it, lovers can feel more wanton in the process. In other cases, where a stripper looks particularly haggard, a woman may come away from the experience feeling confirmed (and relieved) that she’s more attractive than the gal on stage. After all, the slight jealousy that can be fueled by the experience acts as inspiration to outdo the stripper at some point.

5. It’s fun
Going to strip clubs allows for novel experiences and variety, sometimes inspiring moves for bedroom action.

6. It’s so bad that it’s good
Despite its popularity, the experience of going to a strip club is still very taboo in nature. Couples thrive off of doing the unconventional and feeling more than a bit naughty. This includes the turn-on of seeing a partner flirt with a stripper or vice versa.

7. It invites sex and only sex
Going to a strip club can be the excuse couples need for not being emotionally intimate from time to time. It keeps the action at home more sex-focused and can act as a safety valve for those who cannot or don’t want to connect with their partner.

8. It’s safe
Health-wise, going to a strip club invites some of the tag team experience without presenting the sexual health risks involved. Couples don’t have to worry about sexually transmitted diseases, yet they can still relish the third-party effects.

9. It puts a woman's mind at ease
Even if they don't like watching their men get turned on, some women would rather know what their partners are doing than be left wondering. Accompanying him to a strip club makes her feel like she’s more on top of his sexual liaisons.Going to a strip club isn’t for every couple. If it goes against your values or invites sexual jealousy, then definitely stay away. But if your relationship can handle such experimentation, be sure to discuss ahead of time what is and isn’t allowed.Is it okay to get a lap dance? What’s considered cheating? How will you handle amateur night?

Remember, flexibility is key, as the rules may need to change once you’re inside. Seeing strip club fantasies become reality can be difficult for some. It may tap insecurities for some, while the sight of often sad, blank-faced strippers evokes pity from others.If your partner looks uncomfortable or wants to go, don’t make a big issue over it. Just be sure to tell — and later show — your lover that, at the end of the night, they’re always the star of the show.