What is Orgasmic Meditation (OM) and what are its benefits?
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Orgasmic Meditation, also known as deliberate orgasm, started gaining attention after being featured in The New York Times back in 2009.
The practice of Orgasmic Meditation was initially part of “the slow-sex movement” lead by Nicole Didone, the founder of the One Taste Urban Retreat Center in San Francisco.
OM is a wellness practice that combines mindfulness, touching, and pleasure while focusing on female genitalia. It falls under the umbrella of mindful sex, together with other practices like meditative masturbation, tantric sex, and orgasmic yoga.
The practice is usually done by a partner who can wear latex gloves covered in lube, who is stroking around the clitorist on the upper-left part for 15 minutes in an up and down motion with a gentle pressure.
Even though Orgasmic Meditation is a great practice for couples who want to try new things and reconnect, it’s not “a must” for the participants to be romantically involved.
Although Orgasmic Meditation is traditionally a partnered experience, meditative masturbation is an alternative for persons who, for different reasons may prefer an individual experience.
What’s the purpose of Orgasmic Meditation?
Anjuli Ayer, the CEO of the Institute of OM, as cited by healthline.com, considers the OM a goal-less practice, since reaching climax is not the ultimate goal.
Even though orgasm and climax are often used interchangeably it’s important to note the difference. The orgasm starts at the beginning of sexual arousal and stimulation, while climax signifies the end of the orgasmic state.
During orgasm the brain releases oxytocin (the bonding hormone) and during climax the brain releases dopamine (the feel good hormone), according to Dr. Lakshmin, as cited by Laura Miller’s study on the impact of the OM. This could help explain the benefits observed by its practitioners.
Benefits of Orgasmic Meditation
The list of benefits offered by orgasmic meditation, as identified by Institute of OM includes:
- Increased happiness and overall health
- Reduced stress and anxiety
- Improved emotional health
- Greater empathy and connectedness
Personally, the benefits of OM in my case are:
- Get to know my own body
- Understand how I like to be touched
- Ability to express my desires
- Increased libido
- Feeling comfortable with my naked body
The science behind the benefits of Orgasmic Meditation
According to a theory presented by Dr. Lakshmin, back in 2013, the limbic system (the part of the brain that enables connection with others), is often shut down because people spend too much of their time using their cortex (the thinking part of the brain).
OM is a way to use orgasm to train the brain and the nervous system into feeling sensations at a deeper level. The somatosensory cortex (the part of the brain that allows feelings and sensations), is connected to both the genitals as well as the limbic system. The result is that when the genitals are stimulated, the limbic system is also stimulated, which allows for greater connection, as Laura Miller explained in her study.
Orgasmic Meditation step-by-step:
- First you would need to find a comfortable place and position to lay down. This place is often called “a nest”. You should also prepare two timers nearby.
- You may also use any tools that help you get comfortable. For example, the liberator wedge pillow can help you maintain a relaxed position.
- You can set the first timer for 13 minutes. The second timer should be set for 2 minutes.
- Before starting, the person doing the stroking should describe what they see, because OM involves a lot of communication between partners.
- Then, the person doing the stroking should apply lube on their fingers or on their glove, if they decide to wear one.
- A very important step is asking the person receiving the stroking for their consent. That can be withdrawn at any time.
- After verbal consent, the giver can begin stroking the upper left hand quadrant around the clitorist.
- When the first 13 minutes are up, the stoker should begin using down strokes, for the remaining 2 minutes.
- After the whole 15 minutes, the stroker should apply pressure to their partner’s genitalia using their hand so both participants can fall back in their bodies.
- The session is finalized by cleaning up the lube and putting the “nest” away.
What about meditative masturbation?
Similarly to Orgasmic Meditation, meditative masturbation, also known as masturbation meditation is a goal-less practice, except from exploring, discovering, accepting and letting go. Since you are on this journey alone, you can try using a wand vibrator as an extra-help.
Meditative masturbation has a series of benefits as well. It can improve low libido, body image issues, anxiety, trauma, erectile dysfunction, genital pain, and porn addiction. Moreover, it can be a first step before going into a more intimate orgasmic meditation.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between Orgasmic Meditation and traditional meditation?
Even though both forms of meditation seek to better connect practitioner’s mind and body, Orgasmic Meditation might not be the best for those who are not comfortable with the high level of intimacy that is required. Meditative masturbation might be a great alternative in that case.
How to practice OM safely?
Make sure you know what is and what is not part of OM. Remember that you are allowed to ask anyone to stop an OM session at any time and for any reason. If someone asks you to stop contacting them regarding the OM practice, respect their decision.
What is the difference between Orgasmic Meditation and budhist tantric sex?
Tantric sex is part of tantra, which is a spiritual belief system originally from India, stating that anything can be part of your spiritual path (eating, mediation and well… sex).
Tantric sex is all about connection: prolonged eye-contact, slow rithm and being present. As opposed to Orgasmic Meditation it can also involve sexual intercorse (but it doesn’t have to), and possibly but not necessarily climax for both (or all) partners.
Moreover, tantric sex offers a lot of freedom to explore different ways of touching, kissing and positions. Vibrators for couples can be a great way to do just that. It is important to remember that focus on the breath is an essential component of tantric sex.
Is Orgasmic Meditation the same thing as orgasmic yoga (OYoga)?
Although similar to Orgasmic Meditation, Orgasmic Yoga aims at empowering women and improving their sexual energy, orgasmic yoga is slightly different.
OYoga originates from one of the oldest forms of yoga, which is Shakti yoga and has been developed for the western world by Psalm Isadora who spent nine years in India studying the technique.
While OM is consistent, always following the same steps, there is a lot of flexibility in what can be done in OYoga.