Masturbation or self-love, often also called self-pleasuring, is something most of us have explored at least to some extent. For many people, this practice can be goal-oriented, usually focused on the genitals and going for an orgasm at the end. But can there be more to it?
The Legacy of Seeing Masturbation as a Sin
Did you know that Kellogg’s Corn Flakes was originally marketed as a cure for masturbation?
Yes, that’s true! Self-pleasuring used to be considered sinful, so much so that it was thought that anyone engaging in this practice would go blind or insane as a result. Today, we still carry much of this legacy of shame around masturbation. Many of us have learned to self-pleasure privately, in case anyone sees us; quietly, in case anyone hears us; and quickly, in case anyone walks in and catches us in the act. Masturbating in this way can limit the amount of pleasure we can feel, and the intensity and types of orgasms we are able to experience.
Mindful self-pleasuring, or tantric masturbation, aims to reverse this by bringing more pleasure into the practice. Mindful masturbation means being fully present in the moment, and noticing the physical sensations, feelings, and thoughts that are experienced during the practice. Often, people are tempted to turn to sources of arousal that are outside of the body, such as pornography or fantasy. Although there is nothing wrong per se with either of those, too much of them and we are likely to lose connection with our own bodies and the sensations we feel.
So How Do I Start?
Below is a step-by-step guide to bringing more awareness, and more pleasure, to your self-love practice:
What About the Genitals?
Yes, touching the genitals is also a delicious and welcome part of the self-pleasuring practice. Below are some tips for bringing more mindfulness and pleasure to this area of the body:
Bringing more awareness to the genitals without the goal of having an orgasm can allow you to slowly explore each part.
Experiment with different types of strokes, speeds and pressures. If you always self-pleasure in the same way, try bringing more variety to the practice. For example, you can use the opposite hand, different positions, different places in the house. Be creative!
Explore allowing sexual energy to build and fall, rather than going for orgasm straight away. Practicing in this way can often allow the resulting orgasm to feel deeper and more intense.
Strengthen the pelvic floor and learn breathing techniques to channel the sexual energy to other parts of your body, not just your genitals. This way you can learn to experience full-body orgasms.
Separation of Orgasm and Ejaculation and Full Body Orgasms
Women and female-bodied people tend to have the inborn capability to be multi-orgasmic. This is not always the case, for example, if they suffer from anorgasmia and are sexually shut down. However, usually for the men and male-bodied people, becoming multi-orgasmic is something which they learn to do over time. One way to do this is to learn to separate orgasm from ejaculation. It is possible to learn to redirect sexual energy to other parts of the body to open up to full body orgasms. Read more about becoming multi-orgasmic.
How Can Tantric Massage Therapy Help?
A qualified tantric therapist can help you in a number of ways. These include:
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