Tuesday, July 11, 2017

When things good: hug. When things bad: hug.

We are alive. We are mammals, warm blooded, and we like to cuddle, like to sleep together, like to touch other bodies.
This is how we are made.
This is your assignment, my assignment, the human assignment: hug a living being every day.

Lust Game # 5: Hug a living being every day.
If you have a mate and live with that mate, and are both in the same house/ bookstore/ park/ place, go hug that mate right now.
If you have a mate and they are somewhere else, make sure you hug them, at least twice, today.
If you have a work environment where hugging is “okay,” hug someone at work.
If you have no mate, and a “ Non-Okay” work environment, hug a tree today, at least twice.

This may seem weird.
So be it.
Weird is good.
One of the reasons I’ve had such a life of miracles, is that I went for a “risky” adventure when I was 65. I’d given up my life in Sonoma several years before, given away all my tools and most of my belongings and had gone four different places to live with friends and work with special needs children in : Atlanta, Tucson, Arcata, and Orcas Island.
The last, Orcas Island, seemed like a paradise up the the Puget Sound, and I lived there for a full year from October 16, 2009 to October 16, 2010.
Then, faced with another wet winter, I decided, partially on my son’s suggestion, and partly on knowing one very interesting person in Austin, to “try” Austin out for the winter.
Then I’d live the life of Austin in the winter and Orcas in the summer.

And how did this come about from weird?
I had never been to Austin, and used to tell the joke about the contest where the first prize was a one week trip to Texas, and the second prize was a two week trip to Texas.
I’d heard that Austin was the “Berkeley of Texas”  ( as Madison, the Berkeley of Wisconsin, and Boulder the Berkeley of Colorado, and Ann Arbor the Berkeley of Michigan.)
I loved Berkeley, so Austin seemed worth a try.

And weird?

Austin had/ has (it’s losing ground a bit) a slogan: Keep Austin Weird.
I’d always been slightly weird, to more so. (Witness going off to four new places in my sixties). So I figured Austin might be the place for me.

It was.
Weirder than I’d imagined, and with far more magic.
I’ll share plenty of the magic as the book progresses (Sexual training in female orgasm meets meditation, Life Transformation possibilities due to a 5000 year old Chinese energy system, a set of waters called Barton Springs that allows the soul and body to be refreshed no matter what kind of 90 degree and hundred degree summer weather central Texas likes to cook up.)
You’ve already heard the magic of Carol Williams buying a house down the block and ending up Carol Elms.
Austin is that kind of place.
Weird is good.

One way to think of weird is as the code word people say when they see someone being authentic. Some people like weird/ authentic people. Those can be very interesting people. Some are freaked by us weird and authentic people. So be it. That’s their business.

What’s your business?
To be happy.
To be present.
To connect with the fullness of life and the human need for connection and touch.

Hence: hug a person.
And if there is no person that will do, hug a tree.

I remember wondering what hugging a tree would be like, with so many jokes/ remarks out there about tree huggers.
And then I hugged a big redwood and felt that depth and serenity and power from deep in the Earth.
Hugging a big tree felt like connecting to a source of peace that was rooted so much deeper than we can attain in the human dimension.

Hugging trees, even if you’ve got a friend or mate around who is up for hugs, this can be a deeply fulfilling part of your life.

When we hug a tree we can usually feel the depth, literally, of Life on this amazing planet Earth.

And that’s the backup plan. Always have something alive to hug.

And if you are in a relationship, allow yourself to hug your mate, deeply and fully at least twice a day.
When? Right now.
When? In the morning.
When else? In the evening.

Why the morning? You have wake up energy, and you have a day to go into. The love between you will fuel and deepen this day.
Why the evening?
Because you are going to go to bed together, and sex or no sex, touching bodies is a very, very, very important part of relationship.

And here’s another game with hugs.
It’s called, the Avoid trouble and Hug Game.
Because sometimes we get in trouble/ conflict/ a mess/ disconnection with our mate.
And, though most of us are incredibly slow to realize this: When things are bad between people, talking almost always makes things worse.
Because the part that talks is usually the part that wants to be “right.”
And the part of the mind/ intellect that wants to be right, is usually both defensive and offensive in subtle and obvious ways, all of which are deeply engrained.
Engrained in what?
Winning at being right.
The problem with this, of course, is that both people can’t be right if they want the other to be wrong. Which they usually do.
So “talking things out” usually means trying to make the other person wrong, which usually makes the other person feel like shit, so if you happen to “win” (which happens very rarely) you lose.
So what’s the secret? Shut up and hug.

Lust and Love Game #1: When things feel bad/ are bad between you and your mate, ask for a two minute hug.
Don’t talk.
Feel your feet on the floor.
Feel your breathing and their breathing.
Feel where you are touching.
Feel your hands.
Feel their hands.
Feel each other’s heartbeat if you can.
Slow down inside.
Have as few words in you head as possible.
If you have “wounded emotion” feelings, see if you can sense the feelings in your body without words, and without demand that they go away.
Allow the pleasure and NOWNESS of the hug to be the central fact of your life for these two minutes.

Notice another nice/ wonderful/ healing/ connecting aspect of hugging when things get rough.
This helps us not do the avoidance thing that people can get into when things “go south.”

This is it: we can be in fight, flight, or flow.
Fight: is to argue it out, trying to be right, in the guise of “sharing our feelings/ talking it out.”
Flight: leave the room, shut down, get on Facebook, avoid, avoid, avoid.
Flow: Things are easy and natural. Like a tennis game going with incredible ease. Or a dance together without effort. 
Or a hug, that just goes on and on and on, and is enough, is plenty, is great, is nourish, is wonderful.

You are connection.
This is who we start the world as, connected full time in our Mom’s belly, and then connected a ton to them when we are little.
If we are lucky a bunch of aunts and uncles and the dad and grandparents pick us up a lot.
We like our body.
Others hold us with affection.

Hugs are good.
When things are going well: Give yourself and a friend or a tree hug
When things are NOT going well: Give yourself and a friend or a tree a hug

Love and Lust Game #2: When things are going well between you and your mate: hug.

Will this solve all problems?
Will this, like gratitude and coming into the present, make a huge shift?

And now we have a final delicious aspect of hugging.
We are going to combine “bare bones enlightenment” with our hugging?

So there. This is an easy chapter.
To think about.
To agree with.
But to do?
You find out.
Two hugs a day.
Morning and night.
When things go well.
When things suck.
One solution: SHUT UP AND HUG.

Summary of Week Two, Day Three: LUST
Lust involves touch
Being a mammal involves touch.
If things go poorly: hug.
If things go well: hug.
If there is no human around to hug: hug a tree.
This is much better to do, than to plan to do, or think about doing, or think about planning to getting around to it.

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