Mikaya Heart's life changed when she sold her home and took to the road in 2000. Now, Mikaya studies shamanism, writes, and coaches people in the art of being fully alive. What inspired her to write a book about orgasm? What did she learn in the process of writing this book? Does she teach about sex in her coaching practice? What is the relationship between mysticism and orgasm?

Mikaya Heart's life changed when she sold her home and took to the road in 2000. Now, Mikaya studies shamanism, writes, and coaches people in the art of being fully alive. What inspired her to write a book about orgasm? What did she learn in the process of writing this book? Does she teach about sex in her coaching practice? What is the relationship between mysticism and orgasm?

Interview with Author and Coach, Mikaya Heart

July 12, 2011

Mikaya grew up in Scotland and moved to the boonies of northern California in her thirties. In 2000, she had an epiphany, sold her place, and took to the road. She has been traveling ever since. Her greatest passion is kitesurfing, and she loves to spend time alone in the wilderness. She generally finds writing very easy as well as an essential method of expression.

Mikaya has been studying shamanism since the eighties and now uses shamanic methods to help people access the vastness of being. She has come to see sex as a profoundly shamanic activity: it is a metaphor for life and a wonderful way to access bliss. Ultimately, all good sex is about being absolutely present to what is, rather than distracting ourselves with work, TV, drugs, or anything else. In her coaching practice, Mikaya teaches that sexual desire is one of the quickest and easiest ways to learn how to allow energy to flow through our bodies. She believes that when we can do that, we are able to enter an orgasmic state in our daily lives, transforming our awareness of reality.

What books and writing projects does Mikaya have planned for the future? Does she have any advice for those who want to write as a living? Where would she like to visit in the future? What was it like growing up in Scotland? How have the views of sexuality changed in her lifetime?

  • Are there differences in sexual energy - can some be more positive or negative? For example, if one gets off mainly on thoughts of being degraded, is this at odds with the kind of bliss you're talking about with a shamanic view of sex?

    Sexual energy is energy expressed in what we label a sexual way. In other words, energy is energy is energy, but the way it is expressed varies enormously.
    We live in a world of duality, where we have night and day, good and bad, and so on on - all kinds of pairs of opposites, which within duality cannot exist without each other. So we label certain kinds of expressions of energy as bad or good. Experiencing the kind of bliss I have talked about occurs within an experience of unity. Therefore, it is outside any judgments of good and bad that occur within duality.
    One of the wonderful things about sex is that it offers us the opportunity to express energy in ways that we wouldn't want to express it in daily life; it enables us to safely express our shadow side, and have a wonderful time with it. That said, we often do have trouble when we have a lot of strong feelings about NOT wanting some of the things we fantasise about to occur in real life. It's very important to set yourself some clear boundaries - I want to play with this here, in fantasy, and NOT here, in my daily life. But that has more to do with not wanting it to leak over into your daily life. If you don't get caught in that fear, then it won't be at odds with experiencing bliss.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "It's liberating to come to think of how you express yourself without the labels of good or bad. That is one of my biggest frustrations. Thank you so much for shedding light on this matter. Your explanation tells me, at least, that it's okay to be at peace with how I feel. That it's neither right nor wrong. That the things I choose to keep in my fantasy life don't have to be taboo."

  • How have you come to develop a vocabulary for writing about sexuality & spirituality? I struggle to find words sometimes for subjects that often aren't talked about with clarity, and that are constrained by a language that doesn't have many specific words for these fields.

    Oh, yes, talk about struggling to find a vocabulary for my experience of reality!!! I work on it every day. These are things that humans in this culture have never talked about before, have never brought into the realm where we are verbal. It's an ongoing project, and all of us who are talking and writing about these subjects are contributing. But I certainly find it tricky - so many words, even those in common use, hold different meanings for different people. In the end, I have to accept that people will get what they are going to get, and I just have to do the best I can to explain as clearly as I can.
  • I've recently let go of a lot of my past, so much abuse and anger that lived there. Although it's caused me to be more frustrated with other areas of my life. How do you release everything? Where do you turn to for strength?

    Yes, I have really found that as I move on in my life, certain kinds of frustration come up again and again - mostly to do with not being able to communicate with others, feeling a huge gap between me and others - a chasm, in fact! And being a little appalled at some of the stuff that so-called accredited teachers are touting about what we should or shouldn't be doing, or some of the general beliefs that motivate so many people.
    It is necessary to let go of those kinds of judgments. People gotta do what people gotta do is one of my daily sayings. I can't make other people happier, and my desire to change others is often not at all useful - quite the opposite in fact. So I work daily on letting go, and concentrating on bringing more love and joy into my own life, knowing that is what will most benefit others - supposing they want to be benefitted!!
    I am re-fuelled by spending time alone in nature. It is quite essential to me. I feel the Earth singing with me, I feel the delight of the birds, the animals, the trees, the rocks, the water flowing, and so on. I know that all is well, that I can let go of this hustle and bustle of struggle. Kitesuring does the same thing for me - it is such a focussed dance with wind and water that it always reminds me what is true and real.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Thank you so much for taking the time to answer so thoughtfully! Coming from a place of being religious to being spiritual and keeping my faith close to my heart, while letting go of the rules of religion, your answer is very helpful. I find myself frustrated often by the "right vs wrong" mentality of others and I find that I'm just angry about other things, instead of being angry within myself about myself. If that makes any sense."

  • What initially caught your interest about shamanism? Where did you go to learn more about it?

    In the eighties, in northern California, I was working with a local woman, Caryn McCloskey, who ran workshops on things like how to identify and follow your heart's desire. She trained with Angeles Arrien, who is a spiritual leader of the Basque people, the last indigenous tribe of western Europe. Angeles' teaching involves what would be called shamanic work, and it just sat really well with me. Over the years, I have worked with various other teachers, such as Char Sundust and Dayana Jon (Iopening Network), and I've developed my own methods, such as my own invocations when I am calling in energies prior to leading a shamanic journey. I am beginning to understand that what we perceive as reality is only a minute proportion of what actually exists. So there is a great deal to learn!
    Shamanism was just part of the healing work that I have done on myself over the years. But really, what is shamanism? I sometimes use the word when I don't know how else to describe what is occurring. If I had to define it, I would say it is consciously working with energy - and that is a huge subject. (That could be considered a definition of life in human form.)
    Sexual play is an incredible and delightful arena for learning to work with energy.
  • Ansley Ansley 1 user seconded this question.

    In your response to txymxy, you speak of not letting boundaries be crossed if that is something you desire to keep separate, but what if you can't keep them separate? What if the things one is doing is so much apart of themselves that it's all they know or all they can speak of and their views and actions would be judged harshly by the world?

    To make it a little more personal, I have a very wonderful relationship and we do things that break normal boundaries every day. We're both from very conservative families and I've wondered how I would react should I dare to put myself out there and one of our loved ones finds it and realizes it is indeed, us. It's something that makes me waffle when we are doing some of these things. It's almost like I can stand up for the rights of others but I would be so ashamed if anyone I knew found out.

    How do you let go of those negative responses and emotions burned into the mind by society about something one feels as healthy and good?

    Oh this is such a hard one. Something I deal with every day, because I know so many people would dismiss me as a total wierdo if they knew what I believed in. And when it specifically comes to sex, people's judgments are horribly harsh. So how much do we hide?
    I've worked hard on developing a sense of myself as an autonomous being - I make my own decisions about what is right and wrong for me, and I know I am a good person. I check in on that every day. I know that I know what is healthy and good for me, and no one else in this world or out of it is qualified to decide that on my behalf. Sounds like you also know very clearly what is healthy and good for you. We just have to accept that we live in a society where most people are clueless on certain subjects. I have learned the hard way that it is simply better at times to keep my mouth absolutely shut (that is a very hard lesson for someone like me who wants to talk about everything, especially as talking about things is a way to dispel that very feeling of shame).
    And also know that things are changing very fast. There are people who cut me off dead five years ago, who talk to me quite happily now. I'm not sure what changed for them - and I think it might be foolish to ask.
    Websites like this one are also hugely helpful - letting us know that there are other people like us in the world.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Wow. Great answer. I know a lot of people feel that way about this website. I know it has helped a lot of people."

  • If you could travel back in time and change one event in history, what would it be? Why?

    I woudn't change anything. It's all perfect, and all necessary. Smile
  • mandi myth mandi myth

    I'm also extremely interested in if you will be writing another book.

    Under current projects, you've listed your computer as home to books finished and unfinished and invited us to ask you about it. So what about it? What are you hiding in that metal box, hmmm? Fiction, poetry, follow up memoirs? Shamanic cookbook? What is on the finished list? What's on the unfinished list (and are they stalled or abandoned) and why?

    Kayla Kayla 2 users seconded this question.

    What other books are in the works right now? Do you plan on publishing another book about female orgasms?

    I am not thinking of doing any more books specifically on sex for a couple of reasons: one, that I have found people want me to give them a magic tip to having good sex, and really don’t want to hear the truth, which is that it’s about being real, present, honest, vulnerable, willing to take risks and willing to feel your feelings; two, I have found that a lot of people have intense distress around sex (duh, how come I didn’t know that?) and I don’t deal well with distress – I just don’t have the right makeup for that.
    I have several books in various stages of completion on my computer: two about my travels; one about psychic healing; one about the incredible wave of energy we call feminism that swept through the western world in the seventies and eighties, radically changing many women’s lives; one about a commune where I lived in the seventies; one about the art of being human; and one that is a manual for teenagers on sex and other matters. I think I need to put together the latter two, calling it Life, Lies, and Sex: a Manual for Living. That wouldn’t take me long, and it would be a very timely book. The key question is whether I should look for a publisher (which can be a time-consuming and unpleasant process), or self-publish, which I don’t particularly enjoy. I may simply end up self-publishing just because it would make the book available to my clients and to the people who take my shamanic journeys, who have all been asking for it.
    I don't write fiction very much because real life is so exciting.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "If you put the "Life, Lies, and Sex" book out in ebook format, you should come back and tell us were to find it!"

  • What brought you into kitesurfing?

    I wanted to do something energetic that was playing with the wind, because I was afraid of the wind, and I wanted to make friends with it. I chose kitesurfing because it looked so cool, and I was addicted the moment I had a kite in the air. Talk about playing with power . . .

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "My fear of heights is one that I don't know if I'll ever overcome. You're much braver than I am!"

  • Under achievements, you list that you "escaped your family's stranglehold", I am just wondering what you mean by this statement?

    I grew up in a very restrictive environment, where women's roles were very limited, and everyone was always trying to push me into a box that was way too small. It was not a fun upbringing.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "People, especially family, has a tendency to want people to fit their mold. It's hard to break out of it."

  • During your travels, where did you enjoy visiting the most, and why?

    This is difficult to answer because everywhere is amazing in its own way. Jordan was awesome because I stayed in a cave in the desert, where the gorgeous eroded cliffs sang to me. The local sheik also treated me very respectfully, and obviously related to me as a competent powerful person in my own right - which is not something I was expecting in a Muslim country (it's fairly rare anywhere outside the western world in my experience).
    I generally travel in order to visit the different manifestations of nature rather than to see man-made cultures.
    Australia is a huge, beautiful country with lots to see, and a small population, which means I can get away from people fairly easily.
  • Hi Mikaya, and welcome! I'm curious about building your own house - what made you want to do this? Was it for spiritual reasons, or something else? Do you still live there?

    I sold it to go traveling in 2004. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done, but necessary.
    I have always enjoyed working with my hands, and when I studied biology at University in England in 1972, I took a course on ecology (a word that no one much used in those days) which told me that we were destroying the world. So at that point I dropped out, and my goal in life was to become as self-sufficient as possible, as separate from what I saw as the destructive consumer society as I could be. Growing my own food and building my own house out of recycled materials were goals I aspired to for many years.
    I don't identify spirituality as something separate from anything I do, so I guess I would say that motivation was spiritual!

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "We have some ecologists here on the site... or at least one I can think of."

  • Kayla Kayla 1 user seconded this question.

    Do you like to read? What types of books do you like to read? Does what you read ever influence what you want to write about?

    I don't read much at all, usually only when I need distraction, or when something really catches my eye, both of which are rare.
    I find I have to be really careful what I read and what movies I watch because they grip me and stay with me in a way that they don't seem to do with other people. I still remember vividly a horror movie I saw when I was 13. So I have no desire to read things that bring up unpleasant images of any kind, which most fiction does.
    Most nonfiction addressing healing or spirituality doesn't go far enough for me, and anything that contributes to a fearful mindset is completely disinteresting to me.
    Yes, just about anything I read inspires me to write, but that is not necessarily a good thing - I don't need more inspiration! Writing is an essential and easy method of expression for me, and there are many things I can write about. Sometimes the words build up in my head and keep me awake at night so I have to find a way of getting rid of them. Kitesurfing helps. I already have enough un-published writing on my computer, and no publishers are yet crowding to my door, so I don't really want to write more unless I know I have an interested audience (like all of you who are reading this!).
  • What form(s) of shamanism have you studied? What research, books, mentors, institutes or practices would you recommend?

    One of my other answers addresses this question somewhat. It's tricky because very different things work for different people. The only teacher I would recommend unequivocally is Dayana Jon, (Iopeningnetwork.com). I would say be careful of anyone who instills worry or fear in any way, which some teachers are doing as 2012 approaches. Be careful of dogma, which many institutions adhere to. Ask internally to have what you need presented to you, in whatever form - books, videos, whatever, and then pay attention. Things WILL be presented!
    I studied initially with one of Angeles Arrien's students. My greatest teaching comes from allowing awareness to flow through me. We can all do that, but I'm not saying it's easy . . .
  • This quote really made me think: "She believes that when we can do that, we are able to enter an orgasmic state in our daily lives, transforming our awareness of reality."

    I've been in that position before, felt that way, but it never seems to be a long lasting thing. What basic recommendations do you have for attaining and remaining in this state?

    Don't try to attain it or remain in it. Allow it to flow as it will. Be present to what is, and you may find that you are where you want to be more than you realized, or that where you want to be is only a tiny step away, easily within your reach. Seeing beauty (peace, joy, love) only requires opening your eyes, and choosing it to feel it is always an option.

    We get used to being in a certain state of awareness and then we think it's normal and even perhaps a little boring, even though it has initially felt astonishing. We no longer recognize it as different. That's life on planet earth, always changing. We are so often looking for something more. That is not a bad thing, it means that we keep finding more.

    But if you want to know it right now, the answer is usually to relax and let go of any anxiety. Sometimes learning to do that in an ongoing way requires huge changes in our lives, because most of us are NOT brought up to relax.

    Really, I have no idea what will work for you - that is the most truthful answer to your question. But perhaps the above will help.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): ""Most of us are NOT brought up to relax." Basically. I know I can feel tension at any point of the day.

    But the advice to relax and to be more present in your own body is great, albeit difficult for most."

  • What would be your number one piece of advice for "living on the road?" I imagine keeping it (life, belongings, etc) simple helps but what is your best tip?

    Yes, keep your needs and possessions minimal, and organized. It's a great way to learn about what you really need. My car has to have a dozen little pockets all over, and I have to remember where I put everything. Everything as its place.

    But the most important thing is probably to make sure your car is in good shape. You don't want your home to break down!

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "I know I have too much stuff."

  • sexyintexas sexyintexas 1 user seconded this question.

    How does shamanism incorporate into sexuality for you? Is it that being more aware of yourself more allows you to have more pleasurable experiences? I have found that as I've grown older and more comfortable with myself and into my own skin that I can truly let myself go and enjoy things in life that I would have never thought possible before. Not just sexually, but even in general...like sitting outside watching the wind blow, butterflies in the wind, things like that.

    I would define shamanism as working with energy, and sex is one of the easiest ways to develop that skill, because most of us identify sexual energy when it is present and wants to move through us, and we learn to let it move through us because it is so pleasureable when it does. (that is what an orgasm is).
    Yes, learning to be present to what is and appreciating the beauty (peace, joy, love) that is in every moment is a wonderful thing which does tend to happen as we get older, and are not trying to be something other than what we are. More on this in answers to other questions.
  • Welcome Mikaya, it's great to have you here!

    I hear you teach the Art of Being Human, what exactly does that mean and was there any one particular instance in your life that lead to this way of thought, an epiphany if you will?

    I've been avoiding this question because it is so huge! But I think also an essential one.
    I am now calling what I teach the art of being fully alive instead of the art of being human, because other people are using the latter phrase in a way different from my intentions.
    Being fully alive is about allowing energy to flow through you freely. Very few human beings allow that because we have judgments about wanting to be in control (good luck with that delusion!) and looking adult, and it can feel quite alarming/overwhelming (might frighten us almost to death, in fact!). However, having an orgasm is an experience of allowing energy to flow freely, so there are good reasons to allow it. Life is much more full and spontaneous amd delightful and rewarding and pain-free for most of us when we allow it.
    To a great extent, my ability to put this into words arises from my conversations with AMAG, a group of beings who speak through Dayana Jon. But my ability to experience it arises perhaps more out of the dissatisfaction with life that I experienced in the ninieties. It would take far too long to go into that, and I have documented most of it in My Sweet Wild Dance, which is available on Amazon and elsewhere. If you really want an answer to this question you will have to read the book, because it is about my whole life; there were so many things that brought me to that moment of epiphany when I said, this life I am leading is not OK, and I will do whatever it takes to live in joy and peace. When I said that, when I made that absolute commitment, with no qualifications, then it happened, over a period of time.
    And that is the answer to many of the questions people are asking about how do I do this or that. It doesn't matter what it is, if you make an absolute decision to it, with no qualifiers, it will happen.
    I don't want to pretend that I am in a state of absolute joy all the time, however. I still get annoyed and frustrated!
  • Seeing as we are a sex toy enthused community, I'll ask! In that small home of yours where everything has its place, is there a place for a sex toy? At least one? And if so, would you mind telling us what it is?

    Oh yes, I don't like to travel without my dildo and vibrator. I will say that a nice big vibrator is one of those things that I miss - those little one just don't quite do the trick at times.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "That makes me giggle. Thanks for answering such a personal question."

  • KinkyKrissy KinkyKrissy 1 user seconded this question.

    I love how you ignite the sparks of curiosity within me even more. Now I'm looking up shamanism, kitesurfing, and mysticism.

    My question for you is how did you get to where you are now? By this, I mean your passions and interests, like kitesurfing and mysticism. How were you introduced to these passions, or did you just stumble upon them? Did your interest in orgasms and their connection with mysticism start at the same time or is that something you realized and developed later as you learned more?

    I'm delighted to know that I spark curiosity. I think it is very important for us to be curious.

    I have answered most of this question in another answer (mostly saying that you have to read My Sweet Wild Dance to get the full picture), but as regards the connection between sex and mysticism, that occurred in the eighties, when sex in many of its variations was a tremendous healing force for me - not unconnected with the fact that it was a very damaging force for me in my childhood. That's when I really began to understand what I call the vastness of being - in other words, seeing that there is far far far far far more to reality than the physical (and that is why I lead shamanic journeys, because they really facilitate that knowing). I didn't attach the word mysticism to it until later when I was searching for words to describe my experience of life. Since the year 2000, I have spent a great deal of time alone in Nature, and that has really allowed me to become very familiar and comfortable with the vastness of being. Spending a lot of time with people tends to limit our awareness of what is, because so many people grow up learning to limit their awareness. It takes a certain commitment and courage and willingness to be different to see beyond the imposed limits.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "You don't just spark curiosity, but inspiration as well. Thanks so much for all your well-thought and well-written answers."

  • G.L. Morrison G.L. Morrison 2 users seconded this question.

    As an animist, I have been moved by eco-sex activists who talk about various manifestations of nature as their lovers: water (river, ocean, rain); wind, the earth. Do you have this style of "relationships"? If so, do you discuss or recommend them in your books or coaching? Have you had orgasms this way?

    I have orgasmic experiences in nature often. I feel that all the manifestations of nature are my allies, my friends, my lovers, my partners, my confidantes; they are what I am, if you like. There is not a sense of separation. In nature, life-force flow freely, and therefore what is available is huge. It's hard to put this into words . . .

    I started thinking about this a lot when I was talking about the earth changes (which I am delighted about), and people would say things like, humans are the scourge of the earth, and we are destroying the planet.... I can't get my head around those beliefs, even though I am an ardent believer in the importance of treating the earth with respect and love. For me, the earth is this incredible powerful eternal being, who communicates with me, sings with me, plays with me, and delights in me. I feel deeply honored and delighted in turn when she delights in me, since I feel very puny in comparison to her. She could destroy me in a second but she chooses to take care of me, and is fine about me doing things like driving a car, things that make me happy, because she is sharing herself with me, and wants to do so. She feeds me in a deep way that humans very rarely do. I would not have bothered to stay on this planet if I didn't have that relationship with her, because it is so fulfilling. She has taught me to be motivated by trust instead of fear.

    I would like to facilitate this experience for others, and I've thought of leading workshops designed to do so. But they would require people being willing to spend concentrated time alone in remote places, and I don't know how many people would do that. The only places that I've found where I could lead such a workshop are in Montana or Australia.
  • G.L. Morrison G.L. Morrison 1 user seconded this question.

    So I looked up some articles in order to ask better informed questions... the LambdaLiterary review of My Sweet Wild Dance mentions you trying to save a kayak and drifting into a bordering country nearly naked. What borders ie from where to where? And where were your clothes?

    The Rio Grande, between Mexico and Texas. My clothes and shoes were on the Texan side of the river, I ripped most of them off before I jumped in the water. I was wearing a Tshirt and underpants.

    I think that review was written by an Australian woman, for Australians and others who wouldn't know what the Rio Grande is.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "That's much more clothing than most swimsuits. "Nealy naked!" I suppose it's because you removed clothing."

  • Antipova Antipova 1 user seconded this question.

    Do you believe that your philosophy can be taken too far? When I read your sentence "Ultimately, all good sex is about being absolutely present to what is, rather than distracting ourselves with work, TV, drugs, or anything else," I identified with the first half---but I sometimes feel that I "distract myself from what is" with sex. More clearly---where some of my friends who use drugs need drugs to make peace with their lives, I worry that I use sex in the same way. Do you discuss the dangers of taking sexual energy too far? I am very interested in learning to balance myself better.

    Ah well, this question can be approached in a number of ways. Don’t take my response below too personally, I have no idea what you need or want. I am just suggesting alternative perspectives.

    The simple answer is that yes, anything as powerful as sex can be used to ends that most of us would not consider ‘good,’ and it can be used to avoid looking at things that are difficult, or feeling things that are uncomfortable. Distraction can be useful, if not essential, at times, but it sounds like you may be doing it more than you would like. Does that mean that you want to address whatever it is you are avoiding?

    How do you define the concept of balance in relation to yourself? You are getting close to asking what I consider to be the key question that underlies all other questions – who or what are ‘you’? That’s huge, and maybe you don’t want to go there. But you are questioning how to be in the world. Whose standards are you judging by? Your own or society’s? Or are they the same? Where do those standards come from, how did they arise? What would it feel like to be balanced? Or better balanced? How will you know when you are better balanced? What might your life be like? What is it that ‘interests’ you so much about being better balanced?

    Sometimes in order to bring the pendulum to rest in the middle, we need to swing it far the other way.

    Surely anything can be taken too far. How do you know when something has gone too far? Where is too far? Too far from what? Too far according to whom? When I first gave free rein to my sexual desire, it was like falling into a vortex that engulfed me for months. For perhaps as long as a year, I really thought about nothing else. I was intent on finding out how far I could go, what were my limits. Some people would certainly say, and did say, I had gone too far. But in retrospect it was fine, I needed to do it, and if I had not allowed myself to be so consumed, I would not have got everything I needed from the experience so some part of me would still be hankering to go there, to let myself be totally taken over. It’s good that I went that far.

    Was I in ‘danger’? (Your word). That is an interesting concept. I believe the world is a very safe place but not many people I know would agree with me. When we are afraid of being taken over by something, what is it we are really afraid of? Doing something that is not socially acceptable? Losing a sense of self? Both of those could be very growth-enhancing experiences. And they could get us locked up, or worse.

    I think there is an art in staying safe in this world, to do with setting very clear intentions. It’s not about identifying and avoiding potentially dangerous things.
  • What is the most beautiful place that you have visited? The most serene? Do you find that places you go make you more aware of yourself, places that are quiet where you can reflect?

    I can’t decide which was the most beautiful place. Too many stunning places . . . And ‘serene’ . . . I don’t quite know what that means. A place where I feel at peace? I’d probably pick the eucalyptus forests of southwestern Australia. But I could change my mind about that in a minute. Yes, some places, like those forests, facilitate being in a place of total awareness. Not sure I would say awareness of myself, but awareness.
    The most incredible experience I had was snorkeling and diving off the coast of Indonesia (and a few other places). That underwater world is far beyond description. It’s mind-boggling. All those creatures – they’re something else.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "That forest sounds amazing. And probably smell as good as it looks!

    I'd love to go diving."

  • How have others viewed your shamanism? Has anyone given you a hard time about it? And how many appreciate the energy that you have helped enable in their lives?

    I think my views might quite often be disturbing to people, rather than helpful (although being disturbed may be a precursor to being helped). It’s always great when people tell me they have been helped by my writing or my teaching – and recently more and more people have been telling me that. Perhaps it’s just that the world is more ready to listen to what I have to say. I have been given a very hard time in the past, with various excuses – I mean, people would accuse me of this or that, and who knows what the real reason was? I just seemed to push a lot of buttons. It certainly made me examine myself and my motives over and over again which was a really good thing.

    In the last ten years, I have been pretty reclusive, and have said very little publically about my shamanic work; it’s been available on my website for three or so years now, and I’ve been advertising workshops and journeying in various places, but I have not had to deal face to face with any unpleasantness. I had an article about my views on gay marriage published in the Philadelphia Inquirer two years ago, and that got a vitriolic response from gay men, and all mention of me and of the article was deleted from the on-line archives. (You have to read it to understand why – you can find it at http://www.bloggingauthors.com/blogging_authors/2011/7/3/a-different-perspective-on-gay-marriage.html). That was a little scary.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Interesting that it was removed. I would have been upset by that."

  • Do your friends ask you for sex advice? What's the most interesting question you've ever been asked?

    No they don’t ask for sex advice. That may be because I am a little too ready to give it, and I am a little intimidating! {I’m working on that.) I also interviewed a lot of my friends for the book (it has lots of quotes from other women), so perhaps they think they already know what I have written.
    I also think it is hard for people when someone they have known for a while suddenly becomes accepted as an expert in some area where they hadn’t previously had credence. I find quite a lot of my friends don’t read my books.
    And when it comes to sex, if people have a problem, they often want to ask someone who doesn’t know them well, rather than someone who is in their community. Even people who are very open about sex in general can find it very hard to be open about something they perceive as their problem in that area.
    My experience is that people like to have their friends in boxes, and don’t know quite what to do when someone steps outside their prescribed box, as I have certainly done.
    I first wrote this book and did all the interviews in 1997, which was a while ago, and my circle of friends has changed quite a bit since then. It came out then as When the Earth Moves: Women and Orgasm, published by Celestial Arts.
    I’m still pondering what is the most interesting question I have been asked.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "I have a problem where I ask/tell people about sex and I don't seem to know if they're open to hearing/talking about it. I'm rather unfiltered."

  • Which crop was most difficult to grow in your organic garden?

    I had a terrible gopher problem, so some root crops, such as onions, were impossible to grow.
  • Wild Orchid Wild Orchid 1 user seconded this question.

    I'm very excited about the book (I already read two of the Ultimate Guide series and I know I can expect a lot Winking). How was your process of writing it? Did it grow over time, expanded and edited every time you got a new thought or was it more of a stream of words?

    Are there any stories you heard from women during writing the book that moved you or changed your perspective on the topic that you'd like to share?

    My experience with writing books is that they write themselves, and that was certainly true of this one. It was great fun to write, I got to talk and think about sex for months on end, and so did many of my friends because I invited all who would do so to participate. All of us changed and broadened our perspectives in the process of thinking about it so much.

    Although it was very moving and eye-opening to hear everything I heard from women, the stories that stuck with me most were from men (I interviewed a few men and also talked with a few after the book was out). I ended up feeling great compassion for men around the issue of sex – I think they are in a position of enormous vulnerability with very little access to any decent help. One man told me that when he was 19, in the seventies, he heard that women had a magic spot called a clitoris. He and his friends looked in books and talked about it but none of them knew where it was. So he asked his girlfriend and she didn’t know either. They spent hours looking for it, thinking it must be hidden deep within the vagina or somewhere obscure, and never found it. After he broke up with her he got together with a woman who knew where her’s was.
    Now, does that make you want to scream and cry or what?

    After the book first came out in 98, (as When the Earth Moves: Women and Orgasm) I did a bunch of radio interviews, and called up various reviewers across the country. One guy I called in the Midwest was obviously a little surprised when I explained the content of the book. “Is this a joke?” He asked. “Certainly not!” I replied, a little annoyed. “OK, send me a copy,” he said, and I did, never expecting to hear from him again. A week or so later I got an email from him saying he would like to interview me. We did the interview and it was great, he asked just the right questions. Afterwards he emailed me to say: “I want to thank you from the depths of my heart for your book. After forty years of marriage it has improved my relationship with my wife beyond my wildest expectations.”
    Now that makes me cry.

    There are a couple of other stories that moved me very much that are in the book, so you can read about them there.

  • G.L. Morrison G.L. Morrison 1 user seconded this question.

    How do you define yourself in the way of gender and/or sexual orientation? What, if any, role does gender/sexual identity play in mysticism? Has the way in which you perceive yourself or are perceived changed along your journey? If it has, what has the effect been either energetically or manifested materially?

    I came out as a lesbian in the seventies. Recently I have thought that I want to expand my definition of myself and there is no reason not to be attracted to men, but every time a man comes on to me, I find myself running a mile. So I guess I am a lesbian – although socially, I have found the lesbian community to be frighteningly limiting, and now that I have an increasing number of heterosexual friends I find that I am treated much more respectfully in most heterosexual circles. That is kind of sad . . .

    If I want someone who hasn’t met me to know a little more about me, I might say that most people perceive me as a butch dyke. But it infuriates me that I get put down and laughed at by other lesbians when I do things that they think don’t mesh with that label . . . that is also kind of sad.

    I love being a woman and have absolutely no desire to be a man – in fact the idea of being a man fills me with horror. I associate with a lot of men in the kitesurfing community and sometimes that social setting really is not fun, although I am very good friends with a few of them and I am well aware they are not all difficult to get along with! On the other hand I do almost none of the traditional female things, like shopping for clothes or getting my hair and nails done. I stopped doing those things very abruptly when I was 18, when I became a hippie (I didn’t come out as a lesbian until I was 26). It was a great relief. If I want to look sexy these days, I’ll dress up in leather or in jeans, shirt and vest.

    Hmmm, I might be getting off the subject here . . .

    Gender doesn’t really enter into my shamanic or spiritual play/work. That’s because I don’t usually play in non-physical arenas where gender is relevant; in other words, I don’t play within duality, where there is night and day, good and bad, male and female. I exist as a physical being in that world of duality, and I take it into account (obviously!), and I enjoy it, but I don’t want to be trapped by it in any way. Like, I feel trapped by the label ‘butch dyke.’ I don’t want to perpetuate those kinds of boxes. I want to be as fluid as I can be and still be in physical form. I even feel a little strange referring to the Earth as ‘she.’

    I’ve always wanted to be as fluid as I can be but it’s only in the last few years that I’ve put it into words. It’s part of my insatiable desire to be an absolutely free entity. Energetically speaking, I now feel freer and more capable of being fluid than I ever did in the past. I think that is because I now recognize my ability to be free, and more and more I am giving up trying to please anyone other than myself.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): ""I am giving up trying to please anyone other than myself." What a controversial statement in society! Part of it tells us that we should be selfless and loving towards all and the other tells us to put ourselves first. *sigh*"

  • How do you deal with health concerns while living "off the grid"?

    I do very little western medicine. I get regular treatments over the phone from a guy in Colorado who cured my hiatal hernia as well as various other problems that I might otherwise have had to get surgery for. I carry certain homepathic remedies with me always. I have a better relationship with my body than just about anyone I know, and I'm pretty in tune with what my body needs. If I reckon I need antibiotics or something like that, I'll find a way of getting them, but mostly I don't want anyone I don't know well to mess with my body. The last two occasions when I visited western medicine practitioners, I was appalled at their ignorance.
    I also do some matrix energetics.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "It must be very comforting to know that you're taking care of your body and vice versa."

  • Where do you think you would be in life had you not decided to travel?

    You mean physically where would I settle?
    Australia? New Zealand? I don't know. Northern California is one of my favorite places but I don't know that I would settle there again any time soon. It doesn't feel quite right.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "All those places sound lovely"

  • To what did you attribute your inner strengths to before you discovered shamanism? How long did your transformation take?

    We are all born with personalities ready to go, and I was born with various gifts that have manifested in various ways throughout my life. They have unfolded naturally in the process of me being me. I was born with an inner strength. I've been told I'm strong most of my life - and people latch onto me because of that in a way that is not always pleasant. I feel like people would treat me better if they didn't perceive me as strong.

    I always feel a little strange when people congratulate me on things like my writing, because I have never had to work at it. NOT being a writer would be harder. NOT being me would be difficult. Although it also certainly true that I've had my share of trials and tribulations, what's made it all worth it is simply being me.
    So - what transformation? Life is a process of transformation that never ends.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "You just keep saying things that make me go, "huh.""

  • I first learned about life energy while studying Kung Fu and Tai Chi. Have you ever studied any martial art? Are you familiar with the concept of Chi that is used in Chinese martial arts? How do you think it relates to your concept of energy?

    I've studied kenpo karate and tai chi. I stopped studying martial arts because I found that people were afraid of me and I didn't like that.

    Everything is energy, and there are many different ways of perceiving energy, which all have their merits. Studying different concepts of energy can be very helpful for anyone who wants to understand the nature of reality.
  • Blakiepoo Blakiepoo 1 user seconded this question.

    Is there anything you have found in your research about the differences between male and female orgasm?

    I really know and understand very little about male sexuality. In my studies, and in my own personal observations, I would say that the masculine way of being is more dynamic, more outgoing, more active, and the female is more receptive, more internal, more intuitive. Ideally we incorporate all those aspects in our individual being, they are not related to what gender we happen to be manifesting. In reality they often are related to the gender of our bodies. Women tend to have a lot going on internally, which they often try to ignore - because what do you do with it in a world where so much emphasis is placed on the external? If you do pay attention to it, it can be a great source of wisdom. I think it is probably easier for women to sink deeper into an orgasmic experience, to allow it to take over their whole being. But that certainly doesn't mean that men can't do that.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "I might have to ask a followup question to this!"

  • I would love to know why it is that the contractions of my penis are harder and my Orgasm is stronger when Making Love instead of just sex or even violent sex (which my partner and I enjoy greatly).

    This is an interesting observation. I'd suggest you read what I just wrote about the differences between male and female orgasm. Really I am just guessing here. I would think it likely that when you Make Love, you merge more with your partner and that enables you to slip inot an awareness of reality that is more to do with unity, therefore takes you deeper, into more of an awareness of the vastness of being. You become more aware of the vastness of that you truly are, of the power that is available to you, of the unlimited energy that is able to flow through you, and so your body reflects that.

    But I don't wish to indicate in any way that one way of having sex is better than another. I beleive that sex is an awesome way to experience many of the different ways of being in the world, and all of those are valuable. I think that having consensual violent sex can be deeply empowering because it gives a voice to a part of ourselves that has very few appropriate outlets anywhere else. All aspects of all-that-we-are want to have an outlet. And it's also desirable, imo, ot live in a society where generosity and compassion rule.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "This might be one of my favorite answers."

  • I am courious as to the differance between Tantric sexual energy and shamanism if there is a differance do you know what those differances are?

    I can't give a definitive answer to this because neither shamanism nor Tantric sexual energy have standard definitions that most people adhere to. They are both vague concepts. In some cases they may overlap, in others not.
  • Kayla Kayla 1 user seconded this question.

    I'm curious what a shamanistic approach to kink and BDSM would be. Would there be any special considerations or beliefs that go along with it?

    BDSM and kink absolutely are shamanic activities - they are about playing with energy, they are ways of using specific methods to build energy and transform it to specific ends (usually pleasure, although we can use kink, and any shamanic method, to move old stuck pain and change old belief systems). Within the concept of kink, there are many different ways of building energy that work with different people. A good top often has to be tuned into her bottoms on what we would call a psychic level, even though s/he might not be aware of that. (Interestingly, all good healers must also be tuned into their patients on a psychic level - truthfully, everything that manifests in the physical realm is first worked with in the realm of energy, which we call psychic - it's easier to shape something while it is still in its energy form, and we all do it to a greater or lesser degree without being aware of it).
    We can develop specific rituals to assist in this work/play. Collaring someone, for instance; wearing specific clothes; they are props that we use to create a setting where a certain kind of energy will easily blossom, so to speak. I've done a lot of Wiccan rituals, where creating an altar and casting a circle is exactly the same kind of thing, and those actions could be used in kink to help to create a different awareness of reality, one where we can do extraordinary things.
    When a person is aroused, the body changes its 'normal' reaction to what is occurring physically. This can't always be explained on a physical level, by saying 'well, the vagina is expanded, the cervix has moved back,' and so on. I would say we enter a state where our normal beliefs about what is painful or unpleasant do not apply, and our physical make-up becomes less solid, so a woman may be able to take a huge dildo, and fuck really hard without getting hurt at all. As an example: I once watched a woman take a very heavy caning on her ass. I saw the welts arising as the cane hit, and I thought, jeez, she is going to be so sore tomorrow, she isn't going to be able to sit down. But she was asking for more, she was really getting off on it. The next morning I went to visit her; she had only some very faint marks on her ass. It was impossible! She had entered a reality where what would be considered painful by onlookers was experienced by her as delightful, and had no damaging physical effects at all.
    Our belief systems about what is real keep us within a very narrow range of experience. If we are willing to let go of some of our beliefs, it is truly incredible how our realities can shift and change, which is very shamanic. The possibilities are unlimited, and that can be a little or a lot overwhelming. Many of us would prefer to maintain our old belief systems!

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Interesting way of looking at it. I can see what you're saying about the difference between pleasure and pain in an aroused state. I'm a little confused about how our bodies become less solid."

  • I'm a sex worker who often works with clients (of all genders) who have disabilities and/or sexual trauma histories. While I often engage my clients with various forms of massage and meditation, I also wonder if energy work would be useful in my practice. At the same time, I'm very aware that energy work can be quite draining. How could I incorporate energy work practices (and what types would be appropriate) into my sex work, and how can I work to remain grounded while engaging my clients in this way? Thank you!

    I'd suggest you read what I just wrote in answer to the question on BDSM and kink. We are all working with energy, all the time. Doing that consciously with your clients (tuning into them deliberately on an energy level) could certainly be helpful.

    What has made you aware that energy work can be draining? I would say it can be, but it certainly does not have to be. I would even say it shouldn't be, and anyone could learn to do it without being drained at all. Learning to remain grounded is an essential aspect of doing any energy work, since that allows the energy to flow through you. You are not using your own energy, you are allowing universal energy to come through.

    I am not a healer, and not the best person to recommend what kind of energy work would be best for you. I would suggest that you set the intention of learning how to work with energy, and ask that you will be presented with whatever you need to best learn that. Then pay attention and follow through with what feels right. The information you need will come in all kinds of ways.

    Meditation is usually about working with energy, and developing the ability to enter different states of awareness/reality.
  • KnK KnK 1 user seconded this question.

    What advice would you have for survivors of sexual abuse?

    This is a huge question, and how people heal from this is a very individual thing. Very different things work for different people. So I'll speak about what worked for me. I suffered from sexual abuse as a child and, in the end, having done a great deal of healing work around it, I would say I don't regret it - I learned so much from those experiences, about power and powerlessness and compassion. For me, the most difficult thing to change was the cellular belief I had absorbed as a child, that sex was bad, which meant that I was always in some state of conflict when I had sex. I had to change that, and it was a long process.

    Kinky play helped enormously - I had the experience that being powerless could be great fun, and there were people who would take very good care of me, and I could stop it when I wanted. That changed everything. But I do know this does not work for everyone - for some, it is about repeating old familiar patterns, without actually shifting anything. I had already claimed my own personal power to a large degree, which made a huge difference.

    I had to learn to feel what was going on for me, to feel my feelings, and I was so angry that that was really terrifying. I had to take it in small steps. Very few people I knew could deal with my anger when I gave it anywhere close to free rein. So being restrained physically in some way helped, although it is ultimately necessary to learn to feel your feelings without being restrained in any way. They get very huge when they have been repressed for a long time. Once you get over that initial habit of repression, and can allow them to flow naturally, everything changes.

    I address allowing feelings to flow in the book, because when it comes to sexual arousal, the feelings that we have been repressing are usually no longer willing to stay repressed, and this is a HUGE issue for many women. There is a difference between feeling your feelings and expressing your feelings. Learning to express your feelings in a way that does not damage other people is a very desirable skill!

    This may sound pat, but it can be very powerful: don't identify yourself as a survivor or a victim. Be a VICTOR, be one who triumphs. When I was a child I was just surviving, by the skin of my teeth, but now that I am an adult, that is no longer true at all. How you identify yourself is how you will experience your identity. Do you want to continue to be one who survives or one who triumphs?

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "thank you for addressing such a serious topic"

  • I have another question What other writings would you recommend for people to learn about shamanisam and all the energy not just on a sexual lvl or a spiritual lvl but on an emotional one as well.

    Im very open with my sexuality but i have alot of communication issues where sometimes im angry but imnot sure why then other times something makes me so angryi bury it then i push away my partner sexual and would love find awya to balance the emotional as well as spiritual

    I'd recommend reading what I just wrote in answer to the question about sexual abuse survivors. I think your problem is very common to a greater or lesser degree: many women have intense, apparently inappropriate feelings that they don't know how to deal with.

    Sex (rape) has been used as a threat against women for centuries, and it is deep in our subconscious. Inevitably, fear and anger are related to sex for some women, and we have to work to change our relationship to sex, claiming it for our OWN pleasure, NOT for anyone else's.
    In other words, anger is a fairly normal response to what goes on or has gone on in the world; I would strongly recommend that you don't try to justify your feelings of anger. Perhaps something happened to you, perhaps you have absorbed other people's anger; it doesn't matter. You feel angry, that's what matters, that's what's real. You may keep trying to push it away, but that probably won't work for long.

    Usually anger covers other emotions. For me it covered fear, and i had to allow myself to feel afraid and powerless. Once I allowed that, everything changed. I bellieve it is very common for women to grow up with an undercurrent of anxiety that affects us more deeply than we realize, and may manifest as terror.

    The emotional, physical, sexual, and spiritual are not so very separate. I see us all as spiritual beings playing around with the experience of being physical.

    I'm not a good person to give recommendations on what to read because I don't read very much. You could ask Cleis Press, they do all kinds of books. Or/and set the intention that the material you need will be presented to you, and it will arrive.
  • What is your favorite item that you own? Why?

    Item? You have to clarify this: do you mean sex toy?

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "I'll assume an answer for Kayla and say "anything," but us sex toy enthusiasts are ALWAYS curious if you have a favorite sex toy!"

  • What is the one thing ( i.e.writing, teaching, learning or doing) that you want to do and haven't either gathered the courage or had the opportunity to do yet?

    I have two: I would love to travel to a country where my help would be needed with people that don't have the opportunities that we do. And the second would be base-jumping.....I know big difference lol.

    One thing???? How can I pick one thing, there are so many! Here are a few: visit the southern part of Africa; work with big game there; kitesurf off the coast of Africa; skydive; there are at least a dozen more places in the world that I would like to visit and do volunteer work; trek the Andes alone on horseback; travel Mongolia on horseback; get over my seasickness so I can sail the world; win a kitesurfing competition (I have to enter one first); swim with dolphins; visit with some sasquatch; hmmm, I could go on for hours. Oh, learn the tango really well, that's a big one.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "swimming with dolphins has always been a dream for me."

  • Brendada Brendada 2 users seconded this question.

    What are the links between sexuality and shamanism?

    Allowing oneself to feel sexual desire to its fullest extent requires allowing energy to flow through you freely. A free flow of energy means being very open, so that everything that has been hidden is exposed (to one-self, not to others). It is responsible for things like inducing a sense of one-ness, an awareness of what I call the vastness of being – an awareness that there is something far far far greater to existence than merely the physical. It may bring up a sense of the places in the body where you are blocked, demanding that they be healed. It may facilitate the ability to change, adjust, shift, and adapt the physical body instantaneously (which might be called shape shifting), in a way that our ‘normal’ belief systems would not allow -- in other words, washing away or bypassing entrenched beliefs that hold us in a solid form, at least for the period of time that we allow the flow. It takes us to the heart and soul of reality, where we know what is important and social concerns fall by the wayside.

    It’s not that sex does all the above; what sex does for most of us is to facilitate a flow of energy which allows the above.

    Shamanic work/play is about working with flows of energy, shaping the manifestation of energy deliberately, and slowing down or speeding up the flow, or tuning into particular frequencies and vibrational rates. To a greater or lesser extent, shamanic workers are aware of the vastness of being, and they know that there are infinite possibilities available to us. Because of that, they are not so attached to the standard belief systems, not swayed by social concerns. They are able to see and feel different forms of energy before and after they have manifested into physical form. They can shape shift, sometimes in the physical plane, as well as in other realms such as the astral realm (which is only one of what is probably an unlimited number). They understand what is true and real.

    A really good lover is a shamanic worker. S/he is tuning into her lover’s energy, facilitating and directing its flow, vibration and frequency (I am not completely sure of my terminology here!)

    Energy is power is life force, whether it manifests sexually or any other way. When we allow energy to flow through us, we are really alive, and that is very powerful. Many of us are un-used to the sensation of energy flowing freely, and when we feel it we think we are feeling sexual, when in fact we can channel that energy in infinite different ways, in any form of creativity. A shamanic worker knows that, knows how to tap into universal life-force, and knows how to channel it.

    I just want to add that in my experience part of what makes sexual play unique and delightful is that it is about two (or more) bodies, two people, doing this together, and that it is so very much about the bodies involved. It bypasses any mental machinations.

    This is difficult to talk/write about, since we don’t have all the words I need to describe what shamanism really is, I don’t always understand exactly how the words apply, and anyhow words can only convey a very small proportion of what I am referring to, of what is. Most of this can’t be grasped by the rational brain because it does not occur in the mental/intellectual/verbal arena.
  • I'm not sure how to reply other than by "asking" another "question," but I wanted to thank you for your response to my earlier question. The questions you pose from the second to third paragraphs raise a lot of good insight (and I probably wouldn't have been quick to come up with them on my own). I'm going to work on coming up with answers for myself over time. Thank you!

    Good! I have been told that we cannot ask a question to which we do not on some level already know the answer. As we practice, we can access those answers within ourselves more and more quickly, although I find it tremendously helpful to get external validation now and again. Our need to conform to society's expectations and what other people think sometimes make it tricky to come up with the answers that are true for us.
    A teacher's job is not to supply the answers - it is to help a person to dig away whatever is covering the answer.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Personal truths and validation for them are huge for me, I know."

  • KnK KnK 1 user seconded this question.

    Have any cultures influenced your practice (and beliefs) in shamanism? If so, which cultures and how?

    Every culture I have visited and learned about has influenced my understanding of the world, and the shamanic work/play that I do is a conglomeration of everything that makes sense to me. I studied Angeles Arrien’s Four Fold Way, which is about certain practices that you do at certain seasons; she pulled that together from many different indigenous cultures. Prior to that I was practicing Wicca, which is a shamanic form of spiritual practice, based very much in Nature. Along the way I have studied bits and pieces from various North American, Hawaiian, and South and Central American traditions.
    I’m very grateful to all my teachers, but I don’t adhere to any cultural traditions; what I practice and teach is my own. At least, it comes through me.
    Examining ideas and concepts with the rational brain is limited. You can read the words, ‘I am that,’ but if you have not experienced ‘that-ness,’ it doesn’t amount to much.
  • BBW Talks Toys BBW Talks Toys 2 users seconded this question.

    Another quick question. Your life has been the source of inspiration for others. Who has inspired you?

    I think you are asking what human beings inspire me. Certainly strong women throughout the centuries who have thrown off traditional yokes, have all inspired me, from Boadicea to Betty Dodson. My great aunt, who was a major force in starting the organic farming movement in Britain and ran an organic farm with only women for many years, did quite a bit to change my beliefs about what a woman could be, since she commanded respect from men and never cared what she looked like at all. She was a very powerful person, and she was her own person.
    I always find it delightful when I meet people who have thrown social acceptability to the winds.
    But what inspires me on a daily basis is something that isn’t human. I’ve been calling it Nature but I’m not sure that’s what it is.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Thanks for answering my questions!"

  • I generally have no problems achieving orgasm with a partner, however I cannot seem to find a way to achieve orgasm with solo experiences. Masturbation while mildly enjoyable at the start tends only to leave me feeling frustrated and tired, occasionally sore and cramping. This puts me diametrically opposite the target audiences of most female orgasm aid sources I have come across; as they tend to address women who either have trouble orgasming entirely or can orgasm fine with masturbation but find play with a partner to fall flat.

    Does your book include any advice for women who struggle with masturbation? If not do you know of any resources for women on this side of the spectrum of orgasm difficulty?

    This is very interesting and I would love to talk with you more about it. I have addressed the issue of women who don't like to masturbate (I think it's fairly common); but in most cases it's not about not being able to orgasm (I think many of them would have orgasms if they did it - although I could be wrong about that).

    Are you stimulating your clitoris when you masturbate? Is that what your partner is doing when you have an orgasm with a partner? Some women really don't like to have the clitoris touched much at all. A so-called clitoral orgasm tends to arise from tensing the body (perhaps that's what is going on when you are cramping) whereas a so-called vaginal orgasm tends to arise from a state of relaxation. If you are used to the latter (and if you haven't had both, you won't be able to assess which you are having!) and then you try to have a clitoral orgasm, it might well be tricky. I would suggest that you don't try to orgasm when you masturbate. Don't try to achieve anything. (That word 'achieve' is always a red flag). Just do what feels good. You could also experiment with your partner, trying things you have not tried before, and seeing what different sensations come up. And talk with other women about what an orgasm feels like, where does it appear to originate, does the sensation arise out of tension or relaxation? Do they stretch out their legs and/or tighten their muscles before they come? (You may not get anywhere talking with other women because we don't have much vocabulary to discuss this.)

    Women vary hugely in what brings them to orgasm. I have used the phrase 'so-called' above because the differentiation between a clitoral and a vaginal orgasm is very questionable, and so are the definitions themselves. Some women have what would probably be considered clitoral orgasms from vaginal stimulation. I have met at least one woman who has never had what I would define as a clitoral orgasm, but she comes easily, and really enjoys sex. She is one of the women I interviewed who doesn't like masturbating.

    I don't think that it is useful to try and categorize orgasms on an individual basis except insofar as it helps us to talk about it.

    One of the reasons I wrote this book is because I found an appalling lack of good information about women's orgasmic responses. I don't think there are many resouces that address your concern. You could try someone like Betty Dodson, who has been counselling women around sexual issues for thirty years or more.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "I like your response about thinking about it in terms of "achieving." I find that when I try to have an orgasm, it comes at a greater cost physically and it doesn't leave me as satisfied as when I'm more relaxed and having a good time with Mr."

  • Have you ever been to South America, and, more specifically, to Argentina and come into contact with our originary people? We have a very long tradition of being in contact with Earth and its elements and respecting them as a source of wisdom and a way of life, particulary in the NorthEast, where nature can be loving and mellow or frankly violent and destructive. If you have, how did the experience affect your views?

    I spent a couple of weeks in and around Posada, Argentina, and loved it, I would like to go horse-trekking in the Andes. I LOVED the marshy area near Posada, which I have forgotten the name of - where there are floating islands, kaiman, snakes of all kinds, and a huge bird population. I spent three months in Brazil, which was a little alarming both because it is a very violent culture and because there is a lot of disrespect for the environment.
    Nature can be violent and destructive anywhere in the world. I believe most cultures have an underlying tradition of respect for Nature if you look deep enough, but it's not usually easy to get in touch with people who are living that way from day to day when you are traveling. Some of the eco-businesses are scams, some are good, but most of them are out of my price range anyway - and I prefer not to travel in groups on prescribed trips.
  • Do you think female ejaculation is real?

    It most certainly is! That is one of the things that inspired me to write the book.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "followup question!"

  • Petite Valentine Petite Valentine 3 users seconded this question.

    Hello. Do you believe those who identify as part of a non-pagan religious tradition can learn to embrace the shamanic aspect of sexuality?

    Absolutely. Anyone can embrace sexuality in all its fullness, in all its aspects, if they want really to do so. They may be holding beliefs that make it difficult, but anyone can change their beleif systems, or do something in spite of those belief systems. Not all non-pagan religions oppose sexual acitvity.
  • Is there anything you wish you had done differently with you life?

    No, although there are things I've done that I want to apologise for. And there are many things I would do differently if I did them now. But the way I did them then taught me a lot.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "I understand what you mean. Lots of things I'd do differently, but looking back, even things that have caused me pain, I don't regret. They are a part of who I am and if I had done things differently then, my life wouldn't be what it is today. I wouldn't be who I am today. While it's not all rainbows and lemon drops, I actually like who I am today and it took me a long time to get here."

  • What is your favorite thing about sex?

    Probably skin on skin, and getting in touch so deeply with my body's wisdom.
  • This is not a question. I just want to say that your answers are amazing as well as truly enlightening. I am so glad that you decided to do an open interview like this. This is the best one that I have read so far. Thank you!

    Thank you! That's a great compliment!

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "I agree with sexyintexas. Very interesting answers!"

  • Do you ever get tired of being in an orgasmic state daily?

    I'm not in it all the time, it's more like moments of delight/knowing bliss throughout the day. It becomes familiar, and then I want more. There always is more, it's a matter of learning how to allow it while remembering how to function in our daily world. I have to bring myself down back to earth sometimes because I feel like I am going to explode; I feel like my body can't continue to exist in solid form.

    We all exist in different states of awareness; really, the only difference between me and the average person is that I don't limit those states as much.
  • Is there a place you want to visit that you have not yet? If so where and why?

    There are too many to list. There are hundreds of fascinating places in this world. The southern part of Africa is probably next on my list. I could easily spend the rest of my life exploring Africa alone.
  • What do you like to do besides be out doors?

    Do you mean what do I like to do indoors? There is a huge list of things I like to do outdoors. Indoors - hmmm. That's a pretty big list too. Writing, reading, talking, having sex, playing music, listening to music, singing, dancing, to mention just a few.I could do those outdoors as well, but the insects and the weather might be a problem.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Sounds like fun things to do!"

  • What do you have planned next? Is it a book or another trip perhaps?

    I don't make plans in advance very much. The universe presents me with a million things to do, and often doing nothing is what needs to be done. Life is a trip, and I am always going on one trip or another. More books are always happening too. I'm hoping the universe is shortly going to present me with a publisher. If I had someone who wanted to publish all my books, there would be several more available to you very shortly.
    My main plan in life is to be. We are human beings not human doings. I do a lot as well, but ideally I let it arise out of being.
  • Beck Beck 1 user seconded this question.

    Why is kitesurfing your greatest passion?

    It is an incredible dance with water and wind. I have to be absolutely present and focused and I am out there on my own, with just the elements of nature, at their mercy. Everything false falls away, and I feel renewed, relaxed, and refreshed when I get back to shore. If you want to know more, I wrote an article called the Zen of Sport which is available on my website.
    I saw a video where a young male kitesurfer said, “It’s better than sex.” I think he had probably never had really good sex, and there are things about sex that I have never found any other way, but he had a point. It takes you beyond any mental machinations, into a place where you are flowing with the universe, in a timeless space-less zone.
  • What is your "process" for writing? Do you have to have certain clothes? A certain location? A certain mindset?

    None of those. Writing is very easy for me. Once the words are in my head, they demand to be written, and I only have to have the necessary instruments handy. I can do it anywhere, I quickly become unaware of what is going on around me when I start to write. It's a problem sometimes, the words forming in my head keep me awake at ngiht.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): ""It's a problem sometimes, the words forming in my head keep me awake at night." I've had that happen before. Words just come and you can't stop thinking about them. I wish it happened more often."

  • We are human beings not human doings-- What do you mean by this? I don't understand it.

    Human existence is not intended to be about doing. What we do, what we produce, what we achieve is secondary to being. Being who you are is the most important thing. Getting things done is really very unimportant - and I speak as someone who is very good at getting things done.

    Don't just do something - sit there!

    Doing is often a distraction from being. Being present with yourself is often unpleasant initially. You have to pay attention to things you have been avoiding! Smile In the end, being is what makes life worth living.
  • G.L. Morrison G.L. Morrison 3 users seconded this question.

    What is the question you wish we'd asked?

    There isn't one. What you ask is what you ask. But I am a little surprised that no one has asked about relationships, partners, etc. Or where I am now.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Care to share? I've read parts of your blog and discovered that, at least from what I've read, there is no partner; or at least, not just one partner."

  • Has your religion (If you consider shamanism that) made an impact on your writing?

    I don't consider shamanism my religion. I don't have a religion (defined as institutionalised spirituality). I experience myself as a spiritual being and that has an impact on every single aspect of my life. (It doesn't necessarily make me a 'good' person, I don't know that I relate to that concept any more).
  • Is there a question you would not want to answer? If so what is the question?

    There are some very personal questions I wouldn’t answer.
  • Who has maid a large impact in your life?

    Is there someone you can thank for helping you become the person you are today?

    The answer to both of these questions is my father. He was and still is such an excellent model of what I do not not not want to be. And he was in my face for a long time, so I really really really got it.
  • How do you feel about fetishes?

    I don 't think it's ever my business to tell someone else what to do or not to do unless it affects me very directly. All kinds of people are into all kinds of fetishes. More power to them. Whatever turns you on . . .
  • Did you always know you were a lesbian? Sorry if this question is too personal.

    I answered this in depth earlier. No it's not too personal at all. No I didn't always know. It wasn't until I slept with a woman a couple of times in my twenties that it hit me smack in the face that this was absolutely different from what sex with men had been. It turned my life upside down.
  • whats the weirdest thing someones shown or asked you?

    The strangest thing I ever heard was from a professional dominatrix; one of her clients liked to be locked in a box that had holes in the top. The pro-dom’s job was to fart through the holes (she had to make sure she ate beans beforehand).

    What a simple and harmless way to access bliss – at great risk of ridicule. It is as though the more powerfully entrenched a social belief is, the more power it has to carry a person to a state of ecstasy far out of the social norm.
  • When you answer questions do you ever think man i w ish iw asnt asked that?

    No. My brain goes straight into action answering it, and doesn't leave much space for judging it an undesirable question.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Thank you, we appreciate your answering our questions."

  • The followup to your answer to Blakiepoo:

    So are you saying that by being more aware of all the things internally that occur, especially during sexual encounters, that you can dive into a deeper place and experience a deeper, more complete orgasmic feeling?

    If that's what you are saying, I would tend to agree. I know that when my mind and body are both equally present during sex, that is when I have more intense, satisfying, and complete orgasms. Ones that I can feel throughout my entire body and even mentally. They usually leave me quite worn!

    Well . . . yes, somewhat. It’s more like, when you allow yourself to sink deeper – which is about being still and silent internally – then you become aware of what I call the vastness of being, and that is an orgasmic sensation. I think an orgasm that is experienced mentally has silenced the mind, because normally the mind has a lot to say, and wants to observe everything instead of get fully involved in it. But that varies with different people.

    Mind, body, mental, physical, emotional, spiritual – where do any of these end or begin.

    It certainly is about being present to what is, without judgment.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Maybe the next time I play I'll try this. It'll have to be a day when my children aren't too rambunctious, otherwise I'm likely to fall asleep!"

  • Do you ever miss having a home?

    I have a home. It's called Planet Earth. Do I miss having a larger space to play in when the weather is bad? Sometimes.
  • playtimeohsofun playtimeohsofun 1 user seconded this question.

    Is there anything you want to share with us that you have not already?

    I forgot to say that if you are interested in learning more about shamanism, I wrote a book called With the Sun in My Eyes, which is available from Amazon. It’s the true story of Char Sundust who is a shamanic practitioner and psychic reader from Seattle. It’s about her life and how she came to develop her talents, and what she ‘sees’. It is a very read-able introduction to concepts of shamanic healing.

    Also I will be on a radio show called Spiritually Raw on the 28th. It’ll be available at 10am EST, at www.spirituallyraw.com, if you want to ask questions, or you can access it later on line. I will be talking about sex and spirituality. It will only be a 15 minute interview but if enough people vote for me (they have a thing where you go on line and say you want this person to be on the program again), then they will have me on for an hour. So go vote for me!

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "Definitely!"

  • SiNn SiNn 2 users seconded this question.

    I have amood room wherei go when i have different moods isthere a shaministic relevance to moods and how one may changethem via colors ect?

    Yes, moods are emotions, feelings, that is; and they are flows of energy. Usually if you allow an emotion to flow through you, just as sexual energy or any other kind of energy can flow through you, they will pass and change quite fast.
    We have been taught to repress our emotions, and repressed emotions tend to gather power until they burst out, or else we live very repressed and depressed lives. Emotions often come up when we are sexual, because everything comes up when we are sexual . . .
    Sometimes it is necessary to stay with an emotion for a while, especially if it’s been repressed for a long time. As you get used to allowing them, you will find that you can change them by focusing on particular things. You can work with your thoughts and your attention. It’s possible to use color in your life, and texture too, to inspire particular feelings and sensations. It’s very interesting to play like that. I would call that kind of thing shamanic work. It’s about learning how to direct flows of energy, how to change their frequency.
  • Kayla Kayla 2 users seconded this question.

    It's a bit of a tradition that we have here to have our interview candidates answer this question, so I'd love to see your take on it:

    Sex is...?

    Sex is . . . what a huge question. I’ve never come up with a satisfactory definition.
    Sex is a flow of energy that can quickly become very intense. Sex is life in miniature. Sex is a metaphor for life, a playground where we can learn more about life in human form. Sex is an opportunity to experience life beyond physical form, to experience being fully alive, to know the vastness of being, to enter a state of awareness outside duality, all whilst remaining in physical form. It’s an opportunity to know who and what we are, to perceive beyond the illusion.
    Sex with another person is about an exchange of energy with that person. We can have such an exchange of energy without involving our genitals; either way, it always feels tremendously intimate.
    Sex is about the art of touch; playing with the physical body, using physical sensation to move beyond the physical.
    Sex is a gift, an honor, a gateway, a mirror, a window, a boundless opportunity. Sex is about playing with something really unlimited. The further you take it, the more amazing it becomes.
    Sex is a label we put on a flow of energy so powerful and so irresistible that makes us feel fully alive, and we don’t know what else to do with it than channel it into an orgasm.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): ""an honor" might be my favorite of your "Sex is" answers."

  • What is you take on relationships where there is a big age gap? Do you think that the oldest in the relationship tends to try to mommy or daddy the younger partner?

    I can't really say anything definitive about relationships where there is an age difference. They run the gamut. Perhaps most often the older person assumes the role of parent, but I know plenty of younger people who look after older people. Someone's physical age doesn't necessarily have anything to do with how adult or not they actually are. (I'm not saying it's necessarily a good thing to be adult).
  • Is it fair to say that there are different forms of ejaculation for women? Where some women can shoot their ejaculate and create puddles on their liberator throes, others may just ejaculate a small amount of fluid?

    Oh yes, it varies hugely, not just from woman to woman but also for the same woman at different times. It doesn't always seem to be related to the stimulation that is occurring either.

    BBW Talks Toys (host): "I'm sure it's comforting to some women to hear, if they aren't the type to have explosive ejaculatory orgasms."


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About Author and Coach, Mikaya Heart

Occupation: Marveling Mystic
Achievements: Escaped her family's stranglehold; built her own house out of recycled lumber; ran an organic market garden; let go of her anger; chose to live life as a free entity.
Current Project: The Ultimate Guide to Orgasm for Women, published by Cleis Press, is due out in August. She has several other books on her computer: some finished, some in progress - ask her about them!
Statement: My intention is to inspire and empower others to be who they are and live with integrity. 
Publications: My Sweet Wild Dance, published in 2009, won a Golden Crown Literary Award and was described in Edge Magazine as “soul-refreshment of the highest order.” She's written several other books and articles.
Education: For her, life continues to be an amazing and exciting education which is far more instructive and useful than the straight ‘A’s she got in school.
Age: 59
Editor’s note: With her innovative ideas and well-received books, we're very proud to bring this award-winning author and coach to Community Interview!


BBW Talks Toys

BBW Talks Toys is currently a stay-at-home mother of two girls. Aside from writing reviews and participating on the forums, BBWTT is a member of the Social Media team at Eden and also runs Eden Flicks and Eden Lives Healthy. She enjoys crochet and writing as well.

Recent interviews

  • July 11, 2012 Fred Petrenko: "EdenFantasys Celebrates 10 Years of Sexy Innovation! " Read full interview
  • January 24, 2012 Sex Educator and Author, Ducky Doolittle: "Ducky Doolittle, an Author, Speaker, Educator, and Activist, has spent the last 23 years being on the forefront of sexual education. Why did she decide to become a sex educator? How did she come up with the title and content for her book? What does she plan on doing next?" Read full interview
  • November 15, 2011 Editor and Author, Delilah Devlin: "Delilah Devlin, an editor and author, has tried multiples careers in her life before finding her calling in writing erotica. What brought her into writing and editing erotica? Where does she get her inspiration for her writing? What's the hardest part about being a full-time writer? " Read full interview
All interviews