What I've Learned As a Stroker in Orgasmic Meditation
by Chris Paizis Aug 2, 2016
It was a little over three years ago that I first sat down in the Intro to Orgasmic Meditation workshop. After months of reading about it online and watching all the video content I could find, I was eager to experience it in person. There was a particular video, a recorded talk by OneTaste founder Nicole Daedone called The Changing Role of Men in Sex that I had watched at least 4 or 5 times already. It spoke to my experience as a single man in San Francisco for most of the previous 6 years since I had graduated college. The feelings of frustration, the avoidance, the aloofness, the general lack of any real talk about sex beyond exaggerated stories and lofty expectations.
Hearing about OM for the first time struck a chord within me deeply. It was so honest and to the point. A finger and a clitoris. Nothing fancy. No games to play or lengthy dinners before. Just two people looking to share some real, raw intimacy without any of the extras that I was getting so stuck in trying to navigate.
The workshop didn’t skip a beat. It kicked off with introductions from the teachers who shared stories (with a good degree of self-deprecating humor) of their lives before OM that I could easily relate to, followed by a round of shares going around the room in which I quickly realized I was not alone in my observations and experiences.
So could stroking a woman’s clitoris for 15 minutes really be the answer to finding a more real kind of connection? As someone who has now been doing the practice consistently for the past 3 years, I can say a resounding YES. Here are some of the top things I have gotten out of my practice as a stroker in OM:
1. Greater understanding of a woman’s body and how it worksOK sure, this one may be obvious, but it’s important to not skip over. Many of us simply do not know what we’re doing down there. Culture still tends to keep female anatomy such a mystery that my sexual education had mostly come from porn and a few very patient exes. In OM, I get to sit to a woman’s side while she butterflies her legs open, revealing her genitals, and we both proceed to put all our attention on what is happening at the point of contact between finger and clit for the next 15 minutes. It’s such a sensitive part of the body that everything is amplified. I get to feel the immediate feedback from her body when a stroke is more resonant or less resonant, and that kind of attunement to a woman’s body was a huge game changer in itself.
2. Ability to recognize and hold more and more sensation in my own bodyThe OM practice is intimate! I remember the experience leading up to my first OM: asking around for partners, making sure I had all the right supplies, getting into position for the first time. And that was all before any clothing came off! The vulnerability of the practice has it be that I have learned to feel and hold a tremendous amount of sensation in my body for longer than I was ever accustomed to. This has helped me in in sex, in relationships, and even in having difficult conversations at work. I am more comfortable holding my own, letting the electricity build, and not needing to dissipate it right away. The experience is so much better when you stick around for it to all play out.
3. Freedom from performance anxietyOne of my biggest foes prior to finding OM was performance anxiety. So much would go into meeting a woman and getting to a place where there might be the possibility of sex, that I would place a huge amount of pressure on myself to do it all perfectly. In the end, of course, this pressure always backfired as I was too in my head to enjoy what was actually happening in the moment and often times couldn’t even get an erection when it came time for it. After a while, I started avoiding sex altogether as I didn’t want to face the humiliation of not being able to please her. The male teacher in my Intro to OM course talked a lot about similar experiences in his life as well. The concept in OM of not having a goal or outcome, but instead focusing on enjoying whatever sensations are coming up has helped me completely lift this cloud of anxiety and regain my confidence and enjoyment of sex.
4. Finding power and desire in moving outside of my preference zoneThe teachers even joked about this one directly; Surely like everyone else, I spent most of the class scanning the room for potential partners. There were a few in particular that were just my style. Alas, by the time we started looking for partners for our first OM, they had already made arrangements with other strokers. Here’s a place where I would have typically just sat out and said, “Oh, that’s OK, I don’t really need to try this today,” but instead, I kept going and asking around. In the end, I found a woman who had also waited until the end to find a partner. I could feel the combination of eagerness and shyness in her as I approached her on the couch. She didn’t look like the kind of person I would typically date or feel sexual attraction toward, but in that moment something felt quite alive in me. I’m glad I followed it, because our OM was electric! My body felt an undeniable rush of heat and excitement and I realized just how much my preferences had been getting in the way of me having the kind of connection I had been craving.
5. Attention is my greatest assetI had tried so many things over the years to make myself “more attractive” to women. The problem was that I didn’t actually know what women found attractive about men. I assumed it was the same stuff we found attractive about them: looks, clothes, hair, style, etc. but none of that was really working for me on a deeper level. I was oblivious to the polarity of the masculine and feminine. This one got a bit tricky in the class – especially in San Francisco – but the instructors were quick to point out that they were not talking about gender specific terms here. Masculine and feminine were more like inner-identities than being about man or woman. But in my case, it was true that the way I had been going about my interactions with women lacked a certain polarity that my OM practice has since completely shifted. As a stroker, the sensation in the OM really all comes down to one thing: attention. If I have everything else just right but I don’t have my full attention right there on the point of contact, the OM won’t be very sensational. But if I do bring my full attention to the moment, slow down, take my time, and feel everything that arises in my body, I can literally hold my finger still above her clit and have some of the most sensational OMs I have ever had. Ultimately, a woman is only going to fully let go into the hands of a man she can trust, a man with exquisite attention, and a practice of lightly stroking a clitoris is an amazing way to cultivate this type of attention.
6. Effort less, feel moreNow attention doesn’t mean hyper-focus! My first attempts at bringing more attention to my partner in an OM felt like I was getting a headache trying too hard to make something happen. Attention in OM, I learned, was more like a present-awareness than a laser beam shooting from my forehead. One I started to play around with this a bit, I found a kind of relaxed state of focus where I could actually drop in fully to the experience and not feel my attention pulled into the past or future. The trick to doing this was simply feeling into my body. With the 15 minute container of OM, there is nowhere to get to, so I soon removed the efforting feeling of trying to do it right and just started to feel what it was like to sit in such a vulnerable state of connection with another person. And after that, my sex has changed forever.
7. Having an actual practice feels really coolI had always wanted to be one of those guys who wakes up early in the morning to swim or run or meditate, but I could never find the motivation. OM has been the first real practice in my life that I felt compelled enough to stick with consistently. Perhaps its because I was so clearly in need for something like this, but it’s also just a really good feeling group of people to see every morning. OM practitioners have the rigor of dedicated meditators with the humor and slight irreverence I had always enjoyed in a group of close friends. Sticking with something long enough to really start to see some results feels really rewarding and has reminded me that there really are no shortcuts in life. All we’re ever really doing is practicing anyway, so you might as well start having some fun with it.
(Photo Credit: Jana Kirn)