Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Talking to your children about Sacred Sexuality

My article about talking to children about sacred sexuality was commissioned for and first published in the 50th edition of the UK magazine The Green Parent 

What is Sacred Sexuality?

When we take away any reference to religion, the word sacred simply refers to something that is "regarded with great respect and reverence".  Traveling in Bali recently I was struck by the grace and beauty with which the women swept the pathway to their homes and placed flowers at the gate. Their attitude of reverence pervaded even this most everyday event and the effect was tangible and as beautiful as the sweet fragrance of the frangipani’s in their offerings.

When we marry this definition of sacred with sexuality we have something just as beautiful. For people, young or old to regard their sexuality with great respect and reverence would be, in my humble opinion, a giant leap for the well-being of humanity. If we were to include with that attitude delight, gratitude and the willingness to learn and explore throughout life I suspect that many people would be living much richer, happier lives.

How Do Young People Learn About Sex?

Whether it's due to issues of morality, religion or social values, our modern culture has yet to develop a meaningful model of formal sex education. The question of how and when to educate children about sexuality remains chronically vague. Unlike our ancestors and traditional people we no longer include rites of passage as a natural part of life nor indeed provide any community support to guide young people through the profound changes of puberty.

Teens often name their parents as the biggest influence in their decisions about sexual behaviour. Studies show that those who report having easy, open conversations about sex with mum and/or dad are more likely to delay sexual activity, have fewer partners, and use condoms and other contraceptives when they do have sex. However, when parents feel discomfort, shame or embarrassment on the topic young people are left to learn about sexuality from friends, television, music, books, advertisements and the internet. In a UK survey of over 400 school students, three in 10 said they learnt about sex from porn, a medium which presents a very skewed view of sexuality in which safer sex behaviours are rarely displayed let alone respect or reverence.

When Does their Education Need to Start?

Dr Laura Berman offers a downloadable guide - the Sex Ed Handbook - to help parents initiate age-appropriate conversations with their children about sex. She starts from birth! “Children learn about love, touch, and relationships when we talk to them, dress them, show affection, and teach them the names of the parts of their bodies.” she says. “Using nicknames to refer to genitals teaches children that theses parts are something to be hidden or masked. Correct terminology helps them to understand and embrace their body without reservations or shame.”

Normalising the natural urge to explore their own genitals is another important part of a child’s early sex education. The bodies of human beings have a unique and very natural capacity for pleasure. In fact both male and female foetuses have been observed self-stimulating to orgasm in the womb.

The same skills of observation that the farmer uses when he scans the horizon, sniffs the air and predicts that a weather change is on the way, can be applied by a sensitive lover to connect with their partner and to sense their needs and desires. Supporting children to observe and connect with the natural world is another valuable step in their learning.  Developing sensitivity to the cycles of the earth, moon and sun and respect for the plants and animals in our environment paves the way for increased capacity to tune into our own bodies and cycles as well as those of of future lovers. Nature is often regarded as feminine and women are considered in many traditions to be the gender closest to nature. For both boys and girls, understanding the parallels in a woman's body to the natural cycles of life and gaining appreciation of the powerful and unpredictable nature of the feminine are invaluable lessons.

One of the most important messages that we can offer to our children is that sex is natural. Watching animals mating or giving birth either on film or, if the opportunity arises, in real life, can be a wonderful opportunity develop and affirm a deep reverence for life and sense of awe at these powerful times.

Conversations with adolescents

However well the education has progressed with your younger child, talking about sex with teenagers can be full of challenges. Social and cultural taboos mean that, no matter how open-minded and sex-positive a family may be, the attitudes of your child's peers and the messages received from the media can be severely at odds with the values that your parenting espouses.  Pre-teens and teenagers in particular, often go through a period where sex is "icky" and the idea of talking about it with parents is "awkward" to say the least! But as children grow into adolescence, the messages about sexual behaviours, attitudes, and values from their families are even more important. And this is when they need the details!

Opportunities to discuss sexuality can occur on a daily basis. Rather than try to fight against the sexual messaging in the media why not use it to your advantage by making it a teachable moment? For example, when a sexual scene or reference occurs or a news item relates to sexuality in some way you can use it as a conversation starter, either in the moment or later in the day. You might ask "Remember when we were watching that movie and the boy was teasing the girl to make her kiss him? Did that make you uncomfortable? How do you think she felt? What might you have done in that situation?"
Heather Corinna, founder of Scarleteen an online sex education resource for young people offers this advice to parents. “Don't get discouraged if you're doing your best to be open and informative, and your teen doesn't respond: it's normative for young adults to prefer to do most of their talking about sex with peers, extended family members, siblings or mentors. Even when that is the case, it doesn't make what you can offer, the door you keep holding open, any less valuable and important.”

Connecting sex with spirit

A wise and effective introduction to sexuality will develop the skills of sensitive observation, emphasise discernment and encourage young people to explore safely. It will instil a strong sense of self worth, responsibility, and respect for self and others. But what about the more metaphysical, energetic aspects of sexual union?  How can we speak to our children about the spiritual aspects of sex?
Jon Russell is a relationship counsellor who runs sexuality education programs both privately and within the Australian education system. I asked him how he addresses sacred sexuality with the youngsters that he teaches. 

"In our programs I spend much of the time working just with the boys. I teach them about their own anatomy, about the power of their sexual drive and how to connect their genital response with the response of the heart. No matter what they may say I find that boys have a romantic heart and a deep longing for connection. I teach them that it is ok to be real, to talk about how they feel and to stay true to and follow their authentic desires regardless of media messages and peer pressures. We talk about the basics of how to make love, how to read the energies coming from a girl, how to approach them and how to appreciate the magic and wonder and the complexity of female anatomy. As we discuss the amazing power of female sexual response and it's role in creating life I also introduce them to the historical repression and fear of that power and the impact that has had on women in the world today. We also look at other cultures where sexuality & spirituality are more connected."

I was curious how the boys related to the concept of spirituality and surprised to hear his observation that they have an immense hunger for matters of spirit. By talking about phenomena such as UFO's, crop circles, astral travel and the ability of martial artists to direct energy outside their physical form, Jon opens the way for discussing the energetic merging that happens when lovers connect. By exploring some of the Eastern traditions of spiritual sexuality he introduces the possibility for transcendence to altered states of consciousness through love making.
In addition to working in the school system Jon also runs Sacred Union workshops for adults with his partner. His advice for parents is simple; get skillful in talking about sex and normalising it, don’t pretend that you know it all but acknowledge that we are all on a life-long path of learning, work on your own relating and to the best of your ability, model the values that you speak about.

Laura-Doe Harris is the founder of the yOniversity a teaching organisation devoted to increasing understanding and appreciation of sexuality. A certified somatic sex educator she teaches internationally, offers private sesions and performs her comic cabaret ‘Vaudeville of the Vulva’. Read more about her work at www.yoniversity.com.au and www.vaudevilleofthevulva.com.


Resources


http://www.channel4.com/programmes/the-sex-education-show  candid advice for young people on a wide range of sexual issues and problems and http://sexperienceuk.channel4.com people's real experiences to help young people find out what might work for them
http://midwestteensexshow.com - An amusing and informative video show about teen sexuality
http://www.scarleteen.com  - Sex education for the real world 
http://www.sexedlibrary.org - Lesson plans and background information on topics vital to all sexuality educators
The Sexual Practices of Quodoshka - teachings from the Nagual Tradition by Amara Charles

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Pleasure as a productivity tool


A breakfast talk for the Bangalow Business Women's Network Breakfast - 10 May 2012
Did you know it has been scientifically proven that pleasure can relieve stress, reduce pain and boost your immune system? Rather than being something to look forward to outside of working hours, little pleasure breaks through the day can boost motivation, increase productivity and create an environment for creative inspiration. Full of feel good facts and pleasurable possibilities, this presentation will give you some of the latest research on the topic of pleasure as well as a smorgasbord of delicious, non-fattening tips for boosting your daily pleasure quotient.

I’m the bearer of good news - feeling good is good for you!
Pleasure can be considered selfish, greedy, or hedonistic, but if we want to be healthy it is in our very best interests to make pleasure a priority. 
To understand why this is so we need to discover more about how our bodies function and how stress affects us. Three hormones share credit (or blame) for most of the changes caused by stress, cortisol, adrenaline and noradrenaline. How the body releases these explains why we can't be stressed and happily content at same time.
Our autonomic nervous system controls the heart, the smooth muscles around our organs, and our glands. Its function is involuntary - we have no conscious control. The two branches of the autonomic nervous system send messages to and from the brain using entirely different paths - called Sympathetic and Parasympathetic. These two branches cause the release of very different chemicals governing different and opposing physiological & emotional states.

Sympathetic is the fight or flight system - it up-regulates the body to prepare it fight or to flee to safety when in danger. The Parasympathetic nervous system down-regulates the body to return it to the ability to rest & repair. These pathways calm the heart rate, lower blood pressure, support digestion etc.

Under normal conditions, the body swings back and forth between sympathetic and parasympathetic dominance all day long, in cycles called ultradian rhythmsBut today's overstimulated lifestyles lead to chronic stress - we tend to be a bit addicted to sympathetic dominance. Caffeine, media, cell-phones, busy lifestyles and computers all up-regulate us. Our bodies forget about down-regulation and this is the beginning of the disease process. 
Stress has been known to cause disease since Hans Selye's groundbreaking research in the mid 1900s. 80% or more of diseases have been shown to be stress related.
Women who work produce twice as much cortisol as men do. We particularly need to create a way of working that allows our bodies periods of down-regulating, cortisol reducing parasympathetic time.
So how do we activate our parasympathetic nervous system? 
You guessed it - pleasure!
Every experience of pleasure activates your immune system, providing a measurable and enduring boost to your body's natural defenses. A single moment of pleasure can boost your immune response for up to 6 hours
Pleasure does not just happen to us - we must actively choose to cultivate pleasure in our lives and in our relationships.  
What can we do to inject more pleasure into our days?
Laugh
The act of laughter instantly lowers blood pressure for hypertensive persons, stimulates the brain, expands and enriches the blood vessels with oxygen, and sends more blood racing to the extremities. It reduces the levels of stress hormones adrenaline & cortisol in the body. It increases the happiness hormone oxytocin and triggers a spike in immune-boosting antibodies. Sustained laughter gradually increases the levels of cytokine in the blood – a white blood cell enhancer which builds antibodies and helps prevent illnesses.
Laughter is a form of stationery jogging - it has thesame health benefits as vigorous aerobic exercise stimulating the heart and blood circulation. 
Twenty seconds of heavy laughter is equal to 3 minutes of hard rowing and burns up to 400 calories per hour!
A daily dose of laughter exercises 15 different facial muscles is anti-ageing and beats any anti-oxidant pill on the market!
The great thing about laughter is that you don't even have to find something funny to laugh at!! Laughter meditation is a worldwide movement.
Tip 1  - take regular laughter breaks! Have joke books in the workplace, follow funny people on facebook, tune in to comedians on youtube or simply do a 10 minute laughter meditation.
Breath is our best tool to regulate the nervous system.
Deep long out breaths with a sigh encourage the movement of the smooth muscles in the body, aiding in digestion and lowers blood pressure. 
Tip 2 - Smell the roses, use aromatherapy, look at beautiful images - inhale and enjoy the view - visualise breathing in delight and exhaling stress 
We tend to operate in one of three channels cognitive, physical and emotional. When you are taking a break, it’s important to change channel. 
Music helps us change to an emotional channel
David, lacking access to Prozac played harp to alleviate King Sauls depression. 
It’s no accident that Apollo was the god of music and medicine. 
The levels of IgA - one of the frontline defenses of the immune system were measured in the saliva of a group of people who listened to a short piece of music and in a control group. The music listeners levels spiked and then stayed higher for several hours compared to those who sat in silence.
Tip 3 -  Enjoy music breaks
Pleasurable touch alleviates depression. If you are feeling depressed, and are touched or cuddled, your blood chemistry can change in as little as one millionth of a second. The brain instantly responds to pleasurable touch with a flood of endorphins.
Pleasurable touch makes you feel loved. Feeling loved and emotionally secure is essential for the overall health of mammals. Study after study shows that emotional bonds and physical contact allow mammals to thrive. Studies with infants have shown that touch and love are biological needs on par with food and water. 

Tip 4 - Touch yourself or others or pets or soft cuddly toys! - Put your pet on your screen saver or have a picture on the desk - Ask for hugs.
Squeeze your pelvic floor muscles!
Some researchers maintain that pelvic floor fitness is essential for a woman's life long physical, sexual and emotional health. It is a fun and easy and valuable exercise that you can do wherever you are.
Victoria Vulva give you instructions in this clip from Laura-Doe’s Vaudeville of the Vulva 
or visit www.dothekegel.com for more tips on the topic and to get your copy of the squeeze-along song ‘Do the Kegel’!
Tip 6 - Kegel when you are talking on the phone, in the bank queue, on the bus ... you can even Kegel when you Google!
Neuroplasticity refers to the idea that the brain is capable of changing in response to experience and training. Wellbeing and happiness are skills that can be cultivated.
If you’d like to explore pleasure and your relationship with it further, then please come along to The Power of Pleasure. This series of four half day workshops is designed to empower women to re-connect with our glorious sensual bodies and cultivate our creative life-force energy. The next events are on May 20th and June 3rd. Drop in for one ($40) or do the whole programme ($150). There is also a seminar for men on women’s arousal anatomy on May 19th. More details at www.yoniversity.com.au or on facebook at www.fb.com/yoniversity

Links & resources
Ultradian Rhythms & Producivity
Our Emotional Brain (radio program)
Feeling Good Is Good for You: How Pleasure Can Boost Your Immune System and Lengthen Your Life by Carl J. Charnetski & Francis X. Brennan 


Neuroplasticity - http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/enlightened-living/200806/neuroplasticity-the-revolution-in-neuroscience-and-psychology-part-i
Do the Kegel www.dothekegel.com
The yOniversity - www.yoniversity.com.au

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Sexual Future of Women

I love your questions in The Sexual Future of Women, Tabby - and agree wholeheart­ed that they are very important.

I think one of the places to start is by addressing the predominan­tly squeamish attitude to female genitals.

In Eve Ensler's article in the Guardian for world AIDS day she writes “Vagina is the most terrifying word, the most threatenin­g word, in any language of any country I have ever been to. “ She goes on to say, “It is more reviled and feared than words like plutonium, genocide and starvation­”.

It's certainly not an easy word to pop into conversati­on! According to a research survey of nearly 10,000 women in 13 countries, more than half feel uncomforta­ble speaking about their vagina to their health care profession­al.

If we can't name her with ease it follows that we will be dissociate­d from her in some way.

“The prevalence of terms for women's genitalia that can be classified as derogatory or dismissive­, or terms which are nonspecifi­c and vague reflects and perpetuate­s a cultural context in which women's genitalia are either conceptual­ly absent or perceived negatively­.” (Braun & Wilkinson, 2001).

I think a great place to start is to teach young women how to accurately and comfortabl­y name the vulva, vagina, labia and clitoris and I think we do that by starting to practice doing it ourselves.

Viva la Vulvalatio­n!
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Saturday, March 05, 2011

The Q's - sacred sexuality workshops on the Gold Coast

I booked in to do the Quodoshka series of workshops (affectionately known as the Q's) looking for some specific information for my favourite taboo-busting mission. I’d discovered that these particular teachings included some valuable information about different types of vulva and the way in which each type experiences pleasure. I wanted to know more.

But I had my researchers hat on when I made the booking so I was kind of surprised when I received the details of the range of outfits they suggest I bring with me to the workshop. It was at that point that I realized I was not just cruising along with my notebook and pen taking notes at some lectures but would actually be participating in a sexuality workshop. Duh! But even then I have to confess I was a bit blase. I have made it a point over the past 25 years to seek out sexual teachers and teachings so my thoughts were along the lines of ‘oh cool that’ll be fun’ and also, I must confess, ‘well there’s probably not much they can teach me!’.

How wrong was I?

Funnily enough the workshop was quite a bit like a lecture some of the time except that the students  were dressed in exotic lingerie or temple priestess outfits or even, at times, in kinky leather gear. But the information was excellent. So good I found myself scribbling notes on every little corner of a receipt I could find in my handbag. Luckily they gave us a manual with plenty of scribbling space before my receipts ran out.

I have been to a lot of workshops and led even more and I can be very critical about how a workshop space is held. However I don’t think I’ve ever come across an event where the space is held as thoroughly, as powerfully and as magically as in the Q's. Batty, Kristen and Mukee are a very impressive team. Impressive not only in their capacity to convey or to embody these powerful and complex teachings but also in their unwillingness to stand on any sort of pedestal. 

One of the things I loved particularly about Batty’s delivery was the humour. Humour is such a wonderful tool for breaking down barriers and making the unacceptable acceptable. Not that I think the content of anything we were taught is unacceptable but in the prevalent cultural moral climate there are many who do. Batty’s humour kept me thoroughly engaged.

The Q's as they are affectionately know are a series of three workshops offered by the Deer Tribe Metis Medicine Society. This society was founded in 1986 by Harley SwiftDeer Reagan. There seems to be some major controversy on the internet as to the authenticity of Mr Reagan’s claims and his work. The article on Harley and the Quodoshka’s in Wikipedia is seriously biased and badly need of review. It certainly portrays these teachings in in a very poor light. My feeling is that is because the teachings are about sex. And sex is one of the best topics for provoking intense reactions. Certainly whenever it is mentioned a lot of energy is stirred up in many people. Whatever may be the case in regards to Harley Reagan's biographical claims, I have to say the teachings of the Deer Tribe resonate with a profound sweetness and a huge amount of wisdom. Whether it’s Cherokee wisdom of the elders or channeled from the Pleiades – to be honest I don’t really care. It is powerful and valuable material.

The teachings suggest that we were being taught the information that young men and young women would be given within this tradition as they approach sexual maturity. We were given both the theory and the practical component of these teachings. But where the young apprentice would be experiencing the practical component with an older partner that they had chosen for this purpose, in the Q’s we practiced with partners that we had come with or that we made careful ceremonial agreements to practice with during the course of the workshop. This ceremonial space gave everyone the freedom to create whatever boundaries they needed to to feel comfortable.

The exercises were beautifully crafted and always demonstrated by the teaching team. I found that the process offered me insights and understanding into myself and sexuality in general that have been invaluable. Since doing the Q’s I find myself more confident and more fully in my power. I have lost a sense of needing approval from the outside and at the same time I can feel my magnetism and radiance is much more alive, so of course I am receiving very positive reflections.

The next Quodoshka series of workshops will be held near the Gold Coast starting on 24th March. If you'd like to do something wonderful for yourself call Peter Thomas on 0415 644 020 and let him tell you more about them. Tell him Laura-Doe sent you!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Homeopathy under attack

from http://www.davidicke.com/

Over the past few years homeopathy has been under attack by groups with a vested interest in discrediting it. More than likely the same groups as those promoting the CODEX legislation (see Codex alimentarius - Still hunting witches?), who caused the PAN Pharmaceuticals fiasco here in Aus and who have been making it harder and harder for herbalists to sell valuable natural medicines.

Homeopathy is a 200-year-old system of medicine used successfully by tens of millions worldwide.  It is part of the public health care systems of nations in Europe, South America and Asia.  It has a laudable two-century clinical record.  There are hundreds of high-quality basic science, pre-clinical and clinical studies showing it works. It is vastly safer than conventional medicine.
No form of health care can claim such accomplishments without being effective.
But there are very wealthy and powerful vested interests whose profits and power would be compromised if homeopathy were to become fully known and accepted for what it is by the public. They want to make sure that doesn’t happen, and they’re willing to spread lies to do it.
Learn more at Extraordinary Medicine

Friday, December 24, 2010

Debating vaccination

Even if I were not already personally convinced about the potential dangers of vaccination and the huge self-serving influence of the pharmaceutical companies on the medical profession and government - the extraordinary attacks trying to stifle the AVN,  a tiny pro-choice organization in Australia, would start to make me wonder what was going on.

In this article Dr Brian Martin, Professor of Social Sciences at the University of Wollongong and long-time advocate for the right to publicly debate all issues of importance examines the attack against the AVN.

Dr Martin did not approach this issue from the point of view of someone who was either pro or anti-vaccine. He does not have a strong opinion on whether people should or should not be vaccinated.

Instead, he became interested in this issue due to his experience in examining the suppression of dissent -  both as a social scientist and also through his involvement with Whistleblowers Australia and  non violent conflict.

Dr Martin writes:

In my decades of studying scientific controversies, never had I come across, in a country like Australia, a concerted effort to destroy a citizen-based organisation whose main activity was providing information - until learning about the attack on the AVN.

Long but well worth reading..  click to view the article

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Towards a Vulvalation - What's wrong with my bits?

"Advertising sells us more than just products. More subtly but equally effectively it sells us values, concepts and ideas of what love, sexuality, success and, perhaps most importantly, 'normalcy' should look like." So says Jean Kilbourne in the introduction to Killing me Softly 4, the latest in her award-winning series of documentaries on gender representation in advertising.

"What does advertising tell us about women in the 21st century? It tells us who we are and who we should be. It tells us, as it always has, that what's most important is how we look." But, even if we wanted someone to tell us who we should be, the major catch is that the images we are supposed to aspire to are not real. Nobody looks like that!

The Dove Campaign for Real Beauty's award winning Evolution commercial exposed the myth. Using time-lapse photography it shows us how a pretty, but ordinary girl is transformed into a strikingly beautiful billboard model using first makeup and then Photoshop.

These manufactured images are designed to impact on a modern woman's sense of herself and in many cases they succeed, but at least when it comes to bodies and faces we also see the full range of un-manufactured versions around us on a daily basis. We have real people to compare ourselves with as well. The same is often not thecase when it comes to our genitals.

 "It is not uncommon for women to worry about the shape or size of their labia." declares the website for a cosmetic surgeon in Melbourne. That's interesting but we can't blame advertising for that issue, can we? So what is the problem here?

Censored Labia

Apart from gynecologists and beauticians most heterosexual women have very limited experience of other women's vaginas. Until the advent of the Internet most of us would only have had images from adult magazines to make comparisons with. Unfortunately, although not perhaps with quite the same motivation, these images have been tarred with the same air-brush!

In the case of genitals it is the censorship board that calls the shots. For an adult magazine to be classified as 'unrestricted' and publicly displayed in a newsagent the genitals must be "discreet" and there can be no "genital emphasis". To avoid censorship, adult magazines alter the appearance of female genitals so that they are 'healed to a single crease'.  Very little, if any of the inner labia are shown and the result resembles the genitals of a pre-pubescent girl. (For more on this topic check out this episode of the ABC's Hungry Beast.)

Hardly surprising then that many women think that something is "wrong" with their "lady bits" and the popularity of genital cosmetic surgery has grown considerably in recent years. To compound the problem - this unrepresentative version is also what a lot of men are looking for. These same magazines were the source of their adolescent sexual fantasies.

So what is normal? A study that measured the genitals of 50 women between 18 and 50, found that the labia minora ranged from two to ten cm in length and from 0.7 to five cm in width. This variation occurred amongst only 50 women and is no doubt even wider across the general female population. In addition, the colour of the labia minora can be anywhere from deep pink, brownish pink to reddish pink and asymmetry is the norm.

Traditional cultures acknowledge the variety of vulva...

Traditional wisdom from a range of cultures shows a much more wholesome and accurate attitude to the vulva than we have today. The Native American teachings of the Sweet Medicine Sundance Path name nine different types of vulva on the medicine wheel and discuss not only the differing qualities of each one but the varying ways in which each one receives pleasure.

From Japan we have inherited descriptions of five types of female genitals, each one associated with one of the five elements, earth, water, fire. air and ether. The sexological texts of India speak of three temperaments, three kinds and four orders of women which combines to classify women into 36 psycho-physical types each of which has specific characteristics of her yoni. And Arabic culture offers the most detailed and extensive set of terms and descriptions affording insights into their physical characteristics as well as the psyche and sexual drive of their owner.

... and her power

Respect for the potency of the vulva as the portal between the worlds was widespread in ancient times.

Sheelah-na-Gigs are figurative carvings of naked women displaying exaggerated genitals with the lips held apart. They were found on churches, castles and other buildings, particularly in Ireland and Britain and other parts of Europe. Similar female figures have been found throughout Anatolia, Europe, Southern Asia, and East Asia in a broad chronological sweep beginning around 9000 BCE and existing for millennia. These widespread figures are clearly displaying the power of the vulva - the fertile, healing and regenerative power. In many cases their placement also indicates a protective power, the power to ward of evil and protect a structure from an enemy.

Wouldn't it be great to share this ancient wisdom with a woman contemplating surgery in order to "heal her vulva to the crease" and conform to a censor's idea of what is "acceptable"?

Why is this so important?

If women feel that there is something wrong with the part of our body which determines our femininity, which is a source of incredible creativity and delight and which is the gateway through which every one of us, in the normal run of things, enters this world, then there is a dangerous void in our sense of ourselves as women.

I would like to propose a Vulvalation - a movement of men and women fostering the rediscovery of the power and the beauty of the vulva, respecting the wonderful variety and understanding the way in which the differences affect each women's capacity for pleasure and satisfaction. I would like to see the introduction of education in schools that makes these differences clear for both girls and boys and the general availability of respectful and accurate literature and imagery that affirms the naturalness and the potency of female sexuality.

I would like that we reconnect with the ancient wisdom in which women (and the bits that make them women) were respected and valued as the source of life. I would like to help create a modern social environment in which women can fully accept themselves, are truly acknowledged and empowered, and in which the very source of our femininity is honoured, respected, loved and understood.

If you would like to show your support for such such a grass roots movement then you can join the Vulvalation on facebook. Viva la Vulvalation!

References
The Yoni: Sacred Symbol of Female Creative Power by Rufus Campenhausen

Sacred Display: Divine and Magical Female Figures of Eurasia By Miriam Robbins Dexter and Victor H. Mair