Tantra Blog

Friday, June 25, 2010

Tantra travel journal Oregan to Seattle

Oregon

This country is beautiful. Trees form a lush green coat around us as we drive down the highway in Natasha's sexy's truck. I am traveling with two very beautiful people. Between the trees, Mount Shasta lake sleeps impressively. Off in the distance we see the peaks of snow-covered Mount Shasta. It is almost summer solstice, and Dez and Natasha tell me people were skiing up there a few weeks ago still. Mount Shasta is serious new-age hippy country where the legendary Anastasia has her home. I think she may find some Tantric love really grounding.

Ashland

Ashland is a town that hosts a Shakespeare festival all summer long. I can see why. The city feels a bit like a cross between Stellenbosch and Franschhoek with a touch of the Garden Route - Franschhoek goes Organic may describe it. We sit in the late afternoon sun eating an awesome rawfood dinner while watching the snow capped mountains in the distance. Then off to our host Roger, a student of the Muirs - see his lovely website sacreddesire.com.

The venue fills up with the sweetest people. There is a warm sense of community here, lots of embraces and meaningful glances going amongst participants. And what a range of people: Beautiful nature-nymphs and homesprung little dakini's, gnome-like smiling men with lots of hair, a priest who has studied all manner of mystery traditions and brought the together in his own temple, a large man with Tourette's whose body shakes and splutters in response to the emotions he feels during the sessions. He receives my touch with gratitude.

Our talk tonight is flowing in an interesting direction. There is a debate about whether we really need to feel the feelings that come up when the unconscious is touched, or whether the solution is not just simply to meditate. The questioner's argument is, since emotions are created by the mind, we may as well just still the mind and then the problem is solved.

Dez has an unusual perspective. He says people get addicted to meditation as an avoidance of feeling and experience. I affirm the value of meditation as a way of building a capacity for presence, but emphasize that the mind is very good at convincing us that we are being still when actually our meditation is going not very deep at all. Your depth is your depth. When you are not willing to feel deeply what is there, that's it - that's how deep your meditation will go too.

Three women approach me afterwards with gratitude. One is a taoist dakini who appreciated the affirmation to let herself feel deeply into the feelings that she was sitting on. Another teaches a form of tantric dance that works with the undulations in the body. The third is a yogini who has had some experience of kundalini rising from her body while she was doing waterdance and watsu - two disciplines that are popular here. She said it made her feel sane to hear me talking about the mondao, and my experience of how kundalini has risen up in me while sitting in the water, as this experience is not understood in that tradition. I had given some input on my experience of the experience between kundalini and the african mondao waterspirit.

Eugene

Eugene is a significantly bigger town than Ashland. Our host, Jennifer Glanville, is a petite but extraordinary woman who had a spontaneous kundalini awakening three years ago. She greets us with platters of delicious raw food and takes us to the venue, where a small but delightful group of people meet us for a discussion that goes wide and deep. We have time to work with a few individuals in the group, and this has a powerful impact on everyone. The tool I use is the male-female dialogue from my soulmate within course; Dez uses a similar tool that he calls Aspecting.

This is the third time we do the sex magic ritual, and I am starting to enjoy the process of clarifying and setting intention. My desire is to be available and present wherever existence can use me most powerfully for the awakening of those who are ready. After the talk, one of the participants encourages me to present at Ken Wilbur's Integral Spiritual Experience conference over New Year (http://integrallife.com/group/integral-spiritual-experience. I will write to them and see.

Drifting in a hot tub with leaves dappling overhead. I feel so grateful for this moment.

Portland

This is a city I could live in. It is beautiful. Living in this city is like living in a forest on the water's edge. The bridges across the waters are astounding in their design and extent. There is a tango milonga every night, and there is a huge Tantra meet-up. (A meet-up is a concept that is popular in America and is similar to a club.) Walking down the street towards the venue where we are talking tonight is like walking down a Paris cafe street.

We are meeting in the Massage in Motion room. It is covered in soft foam, I am intrigued as to what happens here during the day. People start flooding in, more and more of them. The event is sold out. Initially, I feel a bit intimidated by the volume of people facing me, but soon Dez and I are on a roll. The talk is getting recorded, I hope to get a copy of it. I can feel the energy building up and cooking in the room. At some point, I am talking about the rising of sexual energy in a woman's body, and I find my body spontaneously going into skydancing. A awe-filled silence comes over the room.

Dez and I share a lot in the content and style of our teaching. He talks about the healthy development of the nervous system from conception to adulthood, and how the nervous system can go into contraction when we experience shock or trauma in our development I talk about how the flow between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system can be supported back into naturally releasing trauma. I do some exercises with the group to get them to experience this contraction and release.

We both talk about the importance of feeling your feelings. Dez sees feeling as a feminine quality, associated with the belly, which is also the seat of our power. By becoming willing to feel, we return to our power. He talks about the right relationship between belly, heart, body and mind, and I talk about the flow of energy up the chakras.

At the end of the talk, a woman with a thousand multi-colored plats comes to sit next to me and asks: May I touch you? She puts her hand on my heart, looks me in the eyes and says: I thank you, from the bottom of my heart. Another woman, a beautiful spychic called Noelani, comes to thank me. She has made millions as an e-book writer (http://bit.ly/8Bwsg9), and has been in the Tantric scene for a couple of decades. "It is an honor to meet a real dakini," she says.

On request, I am running a women's workshop the next evening. The event is hosted with a lot of warmth by Erin, rawfoodist and yogini. Amongst the ten women gathered in the womb space of her cellar, are quite a few practitioners. One has done the training of the Source School of Tantra Yoga founded in 1978 by Charles Muir; see http://www.sourcetantra.com and another the Ipsalu Tantra (krya yoga) training http://ipsalutantra.org/. Both these training systems seem to be popular in America and fairly large volumes of people go from this training to teaching Tantra.

It is powerful to sit in this circle of women, to listen to the choir or our yonis singing together. As I guide the women into feeling into the flow of sexual energy through their womanly bodies, some strong openings happen. I so get why women are scared of their own sexual energy - this stuff is powerful! And as the kundalini starts moving, it will move whatever emotions and energetic expressions are ready to be integrated from the subconscious.

Our host for the time in Portland is Anna Marti (http://www.annamarti.com/). Anna has been working in the fields of sexuality and consciousness for decades. She reminds me of the daka/"the sexologist practicing at the edge of the law" main character in the movie Bliss, except she is the female version. Her home is a temple of style and finesse. Everywhere on the walls and tables are rare images of sensuality, the goddess and transcendence. Her bookshelf is a cordon bleu candy store for someone like me. Anna is a yoga teacher, a superb intimacy coach, a tango dancer, a grandmother, and in her free time, she does community service like classes on jealousy in the prisons. Her partner Scott, and internet creative, is a huge amount of fun.

In the morning, Anna calls me into her office to listen in to an internet radio show she is attending. The main speaker is Esther Perel (www.estherperel.com), the author of Mating in Captivity. She is talking about jealousy and infidelity. She is a psychologist with a passion and sensitivity that reminds me of Clarissa Pinkola Estes.

Stopover in Seattle, Washington

Yesterday, we arrived at the house of Dez' sister and brother-in-law in Seattle. Their names, delightfully, are Brad and Janet (alias Rocky Horror Picture Show) and they are as delightful as they are named. Brad is an exceptional listener, and Janet is an extraordinary young looking grandmother.

The house is built on an awesome river. I get in the water, which is superbly clean, and swim right across the lake area. My body is in bliss. Natasha, Dez and I laze about in the sun, and Dez dives out two pairs of glasses dropped by our host! (they get washed in the dishwasher and come out functional again.)

Brad and Janet are wonderful hosts. We get fed on Alaskan wild salmon outside in the late sunset. The house is equipped with everything you could imagine, including constant hot water on tap, excellent recycling facilities, a rain forest mist chamber, and a huge multimedia room. We get good sleep, another delicious swim in the river, a green spirulina smoothie with breakfast (It's great traveling and eating with Dez and Natasha) and now we're off to Vancouver, Canada - yay! In five days or so, we will be back in Seattle to do some talks and sessions.

3 Comments:

  • At June 25, 2010 at 9:18 PM , Anonymous Jennifer Jardine said...

    It is so exciting to hear all that you are experiencing on your travels! Your writing is so eloquent Shakti you should write a book :). I am so grateful to have had you, Dez and Natasha at my home in Eugene Oregon. Although impromptu and spontaneous, your presence with me has changed my life forever and I look forward to our next meeting!
    With Love,
    Jennifer (Granville?) Jardine

     
  • At June 26, 2010 at 1:05 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    It sounds as if you are on a sensual feast of adventure!
    How beautifully inspiring.
    Interesting your debate about feeling the feelings vs meditation. I think the proof is in the pudding. If you clear the emotional stress...then whichever method works for you must work. Feeling the emotions I think is in any case better than dialogueing,and tracking the past, which can be so heady.
    The ken wilber conference sounds interesting. I'm sure that will be a wonderful opportunity for you to attend!
    Much love xx C

     
  • At June 26, 2010 at 2:23 AM , Blogger Rahasya said...

    Thanks for keeping the live feed of your travels going, here, on facebook and twitter. No easy thing, I'm sure, to manage that while life in front of you is so busy.

    I have just finished "Dakini's Warm Breath", Judith Simmer-Brown's excellent book that you gave me. What a gorgeous documentation of your predecessors.

    Many of the stories in Dakini's Warm Breath are about the movement/transmission of Tantra from India to Tibet – just what you are doing right now, taking a powerful authentic teaching to lands that have had just a taste and need to deepen their practice.

    It is a delight to hear that there are some seekers there sufficiently evolved to recognise you, and some open enough to be changed by the grace/catalysis of your presence.

    For a very long time Dakinis, the true teachers of Tantra have operated in relative secrecy, using their male students (the Gurus and Masters) to "front" their teachings. I celebrate your bravery and willingness to correct that historical necessity.

    Keep flying, Sky Dancer.

     

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