Saturday, September 3, 2011

How to Be a Sensualist: A 15 Item List

#1. Stop hating sand in your shoes, swimsuit and bed. well, okay- you can hate sand stuck in your swimwear. The delightfully abrasive scratchiness of a little sand is the feeling of paradise following us home.

#2. Love mud between your toes and enjoy the scary thrill of possibly accidentally stepping on some creepy bug- or better yet, not stepping on it and getting freaked out by its looks. The Jerusalem cricket is a good one to get freaked by.

#3. Get lost in a crowd. Crowds generate an energetic buzz of human-ness like no other. They are not annoying, they are delicious with the flavor of diversity which is what we are experiencing while immersed in them. The flavor of humanities joys, sadness and secrets and aspirations (including yours!) ooze together and once you decide to taste it rather than reject it, it's pure delight.

#3 & 1/2. For that matter, get lost. Then see something new as you find your way back.

#4. Eat a food that frightens you. It will make you feel brave and adventurous without having to go anywhere. If you need a suggestion on this one, just ask me.

#5. Roll down a steep grass hill. Be itchy afterward. Better yet- if you have poison oak, go ahead, scratch it. If you have had poison oak, you know what I mean!

#6. Don't just smell the flowers, stick your face in them completely.

#7. When you see people you have any amount of affection for, throw your arms around them (okay- some people are freaked by this, no need to cross boundaries), feel the mass of their human existence- notice what they smell like even- pull back for a moment, look them straight in the eye and tell them what you think of them. Let yourself have lots of internal explosions over your feelings about people you like/ love.

#8. Taste your food with all six senses. Yes, I said six. Don't argue, okay? It really can be done. Every element of the food sensory experience registers in your entire body- and your intuition. If you pay attention, you will notice it. Do it with a lemon, with a spoonful of honey, with some stinky cheese, with some good olive oil. D. it with a chunk of butter some melted chocolate. A very hot pepper. see what happens? Ecstasy. Or agony :)

#9. Read a poetry book-- that you understand. Don't make yourself crazy trying to decode anything. Go for Rumi, Hafiz, etc.

#10. Smile and wave at every small child you see. Even if (maybe especially) they are giving you a blank stare or dirty look. If you are rewarded with a smile in return- your whole existence will flood with joy.

#11. Tickle and or get tickled by someone- my kids are masters at this and I love it! Good thing I am stronger than them and I always win. Also, let children climb on you and give them horsey rides. Same gratification.

#12. Stay up until 2am talking with someone you really like or until the conversation reaches delirium and you don't even know what the last thing you said was. Then talk to that person again the very next morning. Tell them how much you like talking to them.

#13. Swim underwater with your eyes open for as long as you can while holding your breath. I have a trick that helps me hold my breath for long periods of time. Don't mock it 'til you try it! Just hyperventilate for about thirty seconds then take in a huge deep breath and go under! Make sure to include underwater somersaults and handstands.

#14. Stare at the moon as though there were nothing else to stare at- ever.

#15. Wake up, go outside, take a deep breath, scan the scene, say "WOW," and explode on the inside.

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