This course focuses on interacting with the symbolic meanings of death in the context of sexual intimacy.
Death is not only something that happens at the end of our lives when our bodies stop breathing.
Many spiritual teachers and mystical traditions speak about how dying and rebirth are a part of every transformational process and how important it is that we integrate death into life. One way of integrating death is through experiences of ‘dropping out’ or ‘surrendering’ where we symbolically ‘die’ in the moment and connect to our deepest timeless self, which in turn will change how we engage with life. Another way is by engaging with death as an ally or advisor in awakening to what’s most important and meaningful to us. And in our intimate relationships, if we integrate death by including the potential loss of our lover or partner(s), this can paradoxically help us deepen and enrich our intimacy, including our sexual intimacy.
In This Class We Will...
Spiritual death includes the sense of expanding into a ‘bigger selves’ and how dying and rebirth are a part of every transformational process. where we face the unknown and how important it is that we integrate death into life. We can’t escape death in the same vein that we can’t escape facing the unknown. so we can expand and evolve into .
Most of us, at some point in our sexual relationship, bump into some difficulty or challenge, a conflict or a sense of feeling stuck or stagnant. The way we look at challenges or difficulties that arise in our sexual intimate relationships will determine how we approach them. If we interpret such disturbances as meaning, ‘we’re no longer attracted to each other’ or ‘sex should come naturally and if it doesn’t, that means we’re not normal’ or ‘we just have different levels of desire’, then this leads us down a certain path. We’ll take the actions that fit in with our particular belief system. And even though there may be elements of truth to these viewpoints, this way of looking at sexual difficulties doesn’t open us up to new possibilities and it also doesn’t challenge us to look at ourselves and our relationships more closely.
Implicit in most sexual problems or difficulties there’s a potential for growth and development. The edges we encounter in the relationship will show up in our sexuality and intimacy and vice versa. Because our sexuality can be a window into personal as well as relational dynamics, getting stuck or encountering difficulties in the realm of sexual intimacy isn’t “wrong”. The very challenges that arise around sexuality and intimacy contain the seeds for our personal, relational, spiritual and erotic growth.
This process of growth may be about challenging our assumptions, or it can be about changing the way we relate with each other, how we listen and have conversations. It may be about taking risks such as expressing hidden fantasies and desires or having the permission to connect with your body and explore what it is you want. It could be about setting boundaries or about letting your partner see you in your nakedness and your imperfections. The list could go on and on but wherever you are challenged in the context of sexual intimacy, if you engage it from a place of welcoming and exploration, it usually involves a kind of death of one identity and a rebirth into a new, more expansive identity.
For example, in the process of aging there’s a death of the image of one’s younger self and everything that went with that, the youthful powers it brought but also the insecurities and difficulties. Engaging with this transition, including the losses it brings, can lead to a profound process of beginning to value yourself from the inside out and developing a new kind of confidence that isn’t just based on your body image or the validation of others. This in turn can lead to a renewed connection to the flow of life and discovering stronger and more authentic levels of closeness and erotic freedom and intimacy.
Topics to be Explored
- The multiple meanings of ‘death’ (literal, symbolic, spiritual, essential and/or experiential) and their relevance for sexual intimacy.
- The challenges of sexual intimacy over time – common issues & patterns.
- Frameworks: creative potential within ‘problems’, relationship between death and Eros.
- Deepening sexual intimacy over time by integrating death – what it takes and what it brings: personal examples and perspectives.
- The ‘death and rebirth’ processes that underlie some of our challenges, difficulties or curiosities around sexual intimacy – case studies and examples.
- Application of ‘integrating death into sexuality’ through personal exploration (activity).
HOW TO (RE) IGNITE ECSTACY
Our wish is to inspire and empower you to deepen your experiences around intimacy, sexuality, spirituality and relational development.
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About Your Teachers
THERAPIST with INDIVIDUAL & Couples
Niyati Evers, MAPW, is a Diplomate in Process-Oriented Psychology and was trained in various other alternative modalities such as body-centred therapies and Tantra. In her twenties, she co-facilitated Tantric workshops in Amsterdam, as well as other experiential workshops in the realms of personal and spiritual growth.
She has a special interest in exploring topics that are often taboo, such as sexuality, intimacy and death, and she believes that psychology and spirituality are inextricably intertwined. Niyati grew up in Amsterdam, in a community of Holocaust survivors and their children. She is currently writing a memoir about “Death as her teacher” based on her experiences of growing up in Amsterdam as part of the “second generation” and the psychological, spiritual and ancestral journey this evoked.
areas of expertise
THERAPIST with INDIVIDUAL & Couples
Robert King MSW, Diplomate in Process-Oriented Psychology, has been a practicing therapist for 40 years. He’s been a faculty member of the Process Work Institute in Portland since 1992. He has taught both in the U.S. and internationally on a variety of topics, such as relationships, sexuality, dreams, bodywork, addictions and conflict resolution.
Robert has extensive experience facilitating seminars on social issues, such as the conflict in Ireland, commonly referred to as ‘The Troubles’. He has also co-facilitated Open Forums in Portland on Gay Rights and has taught Advanced Gestalt Therapy, Family Therapy and Counselling Techniques at Antioch University in Seattle. Robert is passionate about developing his visual artwork while integrating spiritual and shamanic traditions with his interest in alternative relationship styles and sexual practices.
areas of expertise
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This is live course taught by Niyati Evers & Robert King.
Included is a 2.5 Hour Live Course, Ongoing Access to the Recording,
As well as Written Exercises & Handouts
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