Tantra educator and writer Dawn Cartwright is one of our much-loved regular contributors. We previously published a sneak peek of her Spring 2021 article, ‘Imagine Orgasm,’ to our website, and today, we’re sharing the whole thing. Enjoy!
The teetering moment
by Dawn Cartwright
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one
~ John Lennon
There’s a sort of exquisite agony at the turning point in orgasm. That teetering moment when we finally let go and open to the wild expanse of who we truly are.
Scientists have done MRI studies of the brain during orgasm, showing us this teetering process from the neurological perspective. During sexual pleasure, the MRI shows that the brain glows and fades like clouds on a stormy day until, all at once, it lights up – the entire brain lights up! – at the moment of orgasm. It’s the same kind of brain activity that occurs during deep meditation and flow states and any time we gain access to the unfiltered experience of being ourselves.
Already, reading this, you may have discovered your body coming alive – just a little. This is because there’s more than just the body involved when it comes to pleasure, orgasm and self-discovery. Our imagination (our knowing and remembering) is an important part of the experience too.
What?! Orgasm and Imagination? How Is That Even Possible?
It’s sort of mind-blowing to consider imagination as a doorway to ecstasy, yet it’s true. Your imagination is one of your super powers and it works like this . . .
Say you wake up in the middle of the night with an overwhelming desire for a midnight snack. In total darkness and sleep-infused grogginess, you navigate your way through the house and end up at the fridge. This is possible because your brain has a map, including obstacles (if you have kids, errant Legos are not part of this map), laid out from past experience. Your brain knows how to get you there because it contains a map from your past experience. It knows where ‘there’ is without the usual sensory input – like seeing the door, the stairs, the kitchen, etc.
Now we’re going to activate this super power you’ve always had, yet have taken for granted, in a way that’s even more precise. Imagine you had pizza for dinner last night and there’s one last slice in your fridge right now. Imagine that pizza. See it in your minds eye. Take in the aroma. Taste it. (Don’t just read this exercise, do it now.) What did you experience? Yep, about 75% of you were able to taste pizza without even taking a bite. Or, at the very least, saw pizza without even seeing pizza. Right? How did that happen?
It happened the same way imagination, pleasure and orgasm happen. There’s a part of your brain that has never forgotten who you truly are (by the way, in case you haven’t already figured this out, orgasm is the all-too-brief experience of your totality) and this part of you is ready for action, anytime, any place. For real. All you need to do is trust.
Try this. Here’s a real life orgasm experiment created by the great orgasm research scientist, Barry Komisaruk, at Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey. Tap your thumb with your middle finger for about 30 seconds. (Are you tapping? Tap, people!!!) Then, stop tapping your thumb with your middle finger and imagine you are tapping your thumb with your middle finger. Stay focused. Have a little faith. Did you feel your middle finger tapping your thumb? (If not, keep practicing.) In a very short time your brain will map out the feeling of your middle finger tapping your thumb and you’ll be able to access that feeling anytime you wish. In fact, the parts of your brain that light up when your middle finger is tapping your thumb will light up even more when you imagine the tapping than when the tapping is actually happening.
(Bet you never thought orgasm research could be this exciting.)
While I’ve got you here in the lab, let’s try one more experiment.
Get some privacy. Touch your body right now in a way that is pleasurable. Take some time, not a lot, not a little. Give yourself at least 3 minutes to experience the pleasure of your own touch. Then, stop. Sit back. Imagine you’re touching your body in that same way. Feel the same pleasure. If you don’t feel anything right away, don’t be discouraged. Each time you practice, you’re reinforcing pleasure pathways in your body and brain. Hidden super powers ready to be revealed.
So, to review. One way we experience orgasm is through the senses. It happens when we see, taste, touch, hear, smell or feel sensations that bring pleasure and we allow those sensations to build. Your imagination is one of your many super powers. It’s the part of you that has never forgotten who you are and knows, deep inside, the pleasure and freedom of being you. The ecstasy and bliss of orgasm. Even when you’re not being touched. Even in the dark. Even with Legos strewn all over the floor.
Dawn Cartwright is a Neo Tantra visionary, sacred writer, world traveler, and innovator in authentic lovemaking and Neo Tantra fusion.