Archive for the 'Making Love Sustainable' Category

Three Questions to Awaken Our Capacity for Life

Friday, August 30th, 2013

rainwomanresized“We do not learn by experience, but by our capacity for experience.”  -The Buddha

 

Here is one of the great truths of life that many of us are missing in the constant search for something new- is that experience alone too often leaves us empty. Instead, it is our attention, curiosity and opening that we bring to our life experiences that make them the powerful source of transformation that they are. This truth also explains why so many of us live such ridiculously distracted lives that often only detract from our immediate experience, keeping us at arm’s length from the insight and depth that our experience can offer us. We are born with the tools to cultivate and wake up our capacity for experience, which shifts our perspective on ourselves, our relationships and brings meaning to our life. Like most things in life, it is all about the questions we ask- here are the three simple questions to grow your capacity.

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Awakening to the Unloved

Friday, August 23rd, 2013

sadhugresized “We must love one another or die.”  -W. H. Auden

 

A near tragedy was averted by love this week in a Georgia elementary school when the school’s bookkeeper was able to connect with love to a troubled, angry, lonely young man who could no longer bear the weight of being unloved. He arrived with a loaded gun and enough additional ammunition to kill everyone in his path. He was accustomed to being rejected, even by his family and no doubt was surprised that someone would react with something other than fear upon seeing him. Antoinette Tuff’s calm presence engaged him with personal stories of her own loss and disarmed him by including him. The shooter, a young man of 20, was ready to die and wanted to take as many people as possible with him. When he admitted “no one loved him “she replied earnestly that “she loved him and was proud of him…”  Afterwards, when she was asked how she was able to respond with love, she said, “That wasn’t me; that was God.” Certainly meeting fear with love and acceptance is at the foundation of all spiritual teaching.

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Waking Up Our Sexual Dialogue

Friday, August 16th, 2013

ku-xlarge“Just because we don’t understand doesn’t mean that the explanation doesn’t exist.”  -Madeleine L’engle

 

My favorite thing to do is teach and last weekend I was lucky to have the chance to give a presentation to 50 physicians about working with their patients’ sexual dysfunction issues. I thought it would be easy- like falling off a log as I spend so much of my days thinking, researching and talking about ways to become more sexually healthy, but in fact I was surprised how much I still had to learn as I was obliged to organize my rambling knowledge into a cohesive 90 minute talk. It is daunting to cover the vast swaths of dysfunction that make up the landscape of so many people’s experience with their sexuality. Pain with sex is almost more common than not in a lifetime and the silence that overwhelms the symptoms makes healing through education all the more difficult.

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A Thousand Years

Friday, August 2nd, 2013

Life behind the fence“While we wait in silence for that final luxury of fearlessness, the weight of that silence will choke us.” –Audre Lorde

 

Yesterday, a judge gave Ariel Castro, the Ohio man guilty of abducting, raping and abusing 3 young women for more than ten years, life in prison plus a thousand years.   Given that he only has one life to pay for his heinous crimes I was thinking maybe that the justice system might want to spread the other 1000 years around for the other hundreds of thousands of offenders who make a business out of abducting, raping, selling and torturing millions of young girls around the world. As horrible as Castro’s crimes were, they are far from unique. Sex trafficking includes all of the crimes that he committed against these girls and worse.  It is big business in the organized crime world. There are literally millions of Ariel Castros out there abducting, abusing and raping young girls all over the world.

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Uncovering the Unknown

Friday, July 26th, 2013

goldenpathresized“There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.” -Aldous Huxley 

I am not proud of the moments when something cracks in me and I become someone I hardly recognize. The times when a powerful storm lets loose inside me without warning, remain stubbornly unpredictable. The triggers are complex; rarely can I trace them to some direct input. Rather they are reflections of the internal conflicts, which more often than not go unnamed and unattended. They are the invisible cracks in our own heart that control us in ways that are potentially damaging precisely because they are invisible. These emotional prisons define our relationships in our intimate lives as well as our careers, and they are strengthened by our ignorance. Not knowing what we want, how we feel, or where our boundaries lay makes it impossible to align our ideas of life with reality itself. Getting stuck in these deep places in ourselves turns internal conflict into a smoldering ash that can be ignited by seemingly innocent events.

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Freedom from Hookups

Friday, July 19th, 2013

sexycouple3resized“Romantic goals change from finding boyfriends to finding hook up buddies…a guy we don’t actually really like, but we think he is really attractive and hot and good in bed.”  -Student at U of Penn

I was in the liquor store yesterday, choosing between flavors of my favorite  Clear Creek brandies  when I went on to share my excitement about my purchase with the two 20 something guys behind the counter.  I said “this stuff  can really bring fire to a kiss and heat up your intimate life…”  To which he responded  “ I don’t have an intimate life.”   His co-worker joined in the conversation adding  “yeah being in love is so ten minutes ago.”    “But this is the time of your life for falling in love, I argued  this is what the 20s are for.”   Apparently not for this generation.

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Freeing our Fantasies

Friday, July 12th, 2013

remodel“Fantasy love is much better than reality love. Never doing it is very exciting. The most exciting attractions are between two opposites that never meet.”  -Andy Warhol

It all started with a leak under my refrigerator. Then it became clear that the entire wood floor needed replacing. After my contractor arrived it was agreed that that the cabinets would look even worse than they did next to a new floor, so that was going to be my part in the kitchen rehab. Before long, the kitchen was gutted and I am working alongside my contractor sanding and refinishing. What makes guys who can fix things so sexy? Contractors have always been one of my weak points. I can’t help but fall for guys who can turn my ideas into reality so easily. It seems like the power tools are part of their hands.

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Five Ways to Keep the Fireworks Going

Friday, July 5th, 2013

heart fireworks“Sex is always about emotions. Good sex is about free emotions; bad sex is about blocked emotions.”  -Deepak Chopra

My 15-year-old daughter told me that a friend was planning to try to get his first kiss when the fireworks went off last night. Talk about a romantic beginning…But even more than a romantic beginning is mastering the tools to keep intimacy vibrant long after the fireworks fade away. In light of that, I offer these five foolproof tips to get a spark to ignite and enjoy reliable, continuously improving pleasure with your heart’s desire….

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Angels in Disguise

Friday, June 28th, 2013

northernlights4“Nobody’s perfect. We’re all just one step up from the beasts and one step down from the angels.”-   Jeannette Walls

 

Years ago at one of the last adult shows I attended my Good Clean Love booth was next to the Angels, Buck the Transman porn star and his wife Elaine  author of the Piercing Bible.  At first glance, this couple who was literally covered from head to toe in tattoos and piercings selling huge glass pieces and giant posters of Buck: Man with a Pussy was as foreign to me as I could imagine.   I was stunned.  My judgments about who they were came upon me so fast that there was not enough time to recognize them as judgments, let alone question them.   I was pretty certain that I would not have much in common to connect to my neighbors.  That was the beginning of my summer of gratitude project when I was learning how to access gratitude and I was asking fellow vendors for prizes for the best gratitude entries. Asking Buck and Elaine about gratitude changed everything.

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The Infidelity Preventative

Friday, June 21st, 2013

comfortguyresized “Rather fail with honor than succeed by fraud.” -Sophocles

Yesterday, I interviewed Neil Biderman, the founder and CEO of Ashley Madison, the online affair portal that boasts 19 million profiles in 26 countries.  Every day, the business of cheating generates 26,000 new users and over $91,000.  His empire, built on what isn’t working in human intimacy, is booming. Our conversation was lively; he was accustomed to the push back and articulate about the challenges of making a fortune on the devastating betrayals that his website generates. Initially, he argued that it wasn’t the desire for sex as much as a longing for passion and attention that motivated so many of his female customers to initiating affairs. Only moments later he claimed that his website was actually helpful to marriage longevity because it allowed people to stay together and have their sexual needs taken care of elsewhere.

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