"Women who think they're going to learn anything from Fifty Shades of Grey are wasting their time. They'd do better to read 'Slow Sex: The Art and Craft of the Female Orgasm.'"
I read that on a message board.
So I bought Nicole Daedone's book.
On page 1: "I teach a practice called Orgasmic Meditation. It's a way that any man can bring out the orgasm in any woman, in just fifteen minutes."
Would you read on?
Very quickly I learned that orgasm, for Daedone, is not the moment of climax. It's the entire experience of sex. It's the way sexual potency is "a source of power," an "entry point" to joyful living, a "gateway" to a deeper connection with your lover.
Or would you prefer to learn, from 50 Shades, how to enjoy being whipped with a riding crop, shackled and fisted?
Given that choice, any reasonable woman -- or any man involved with a woman who prefers improved reality to romance novel fantasy -- would ask: So what is the technique?
It's not sex. It's not even foreplay. After 15 minutes, you get up and leave. It's just what Daedone says it is -- meditation. But because we're talking about orgasm, you do it with your body. [To buy the paperback from Amazon, click here. For the Kindle edition, click here.]
Or rather, you do it with the woman's body -- because the man remains fully clothed. She removes her pants. Lies down. Spreads her legs. From there, he does everything. Looking. Stroking. Talking.
But however much I may be a man of the world, I blush to tell you the specifics. So please watch Nicole Daedone's TED Talk (yes, she made a presentation at TedxSF). I'd suggest that you start at 5:30 and cut out around the 10-minute mark.
Let's take a breath here and address a different question: Who is Nicole Daedone and why should you pay attention to her?
From The New York Times (yes, she was profiled in the Times):
Ms. Daedone's early career was hardly alternative: she studied semantics at San Francisco State University and then donned her pearls to help found an art gallery. But at 27, her world came crashing down when she learned that her father, from whom she was largely estranged, was dying of cancer in prison, after being convicted of molesting two young girls.
"Everything in my reality just collapsed," she said. "My body turned to stone and crumbled."
Her father had not behaved inappropriately toward her, Ms. Daedone said; on the contrary, he was a distant figure.
"There had been a way I felt close to him in this felt way, and then all of the sudden he would shut down," she said. "I later came to understand that he was trying to protect me from himself, from his pathology."
Her pathway back to life was initially Buddhism, which she pursued with a vengeance, intending to live in a Zen community. But at a party in 1998, she met a Buddhist who had a practice in what he called "contemplative sexuality."
What she got from taking off her pants, being stroked and talked to was nothing less than a revelation. She discovered that women are entitled to ask for what they want, that paying attention to female pleasure rewards the man as well as the woman, and that the benefits of orgasm can have a huge ripple effect: "It will be turned on women around the world, and those that dare to stroke us, that will change the world, feeding the desire for connection that we all have."
This is powerful stuff. I know because when I described Daedone's technique to some women of the world, they all found reasons to balk. He doesn't have to be your lover? He looks at you? He talks to you? And then you leave?
Hey, I also felt huge resistance. But then I considered two of the chapters in this book.
The first is "What Men Should Know About Women." Among her points:
-- "Women want to have sex just as much as men -- just not the sex that's on the menu."
-- "What she really wants is access to your attention."
-- "Women have no idea how much men love them."
-- "She doesn't want 'her' way, she wants 'our' way."
The second is "What Women Should Know About Men." Among her points:
-- "Men experience acknowledgment through a woman's happiness."
-- "Nice is the trump card."
-- "Say it to a man every time like it's the first time."
-- "Men get confused when women withhold information."
This stuff makes sense. I can't speak to the genius of the meditation technique, but I'm sure that Nicole Daedone has a few things exactly right. I know I don't want to be "handled." I don't want a woman to fake her pleasure. I want sex to affirm us, not just get me off.
Is this technique for you? It's your call. I can only offer advice on a related topic: confusing the messenger with the message.
In the mid-1970s, I wrote a piece about Werner Erhard that put a serious dent in his business. Too bad it didn't shut him down. Not because est was bullshit -- Erhard was a very clever guy, and he very adroitly appropriated the smartest tech of other disciplines -- but because he so fundamentally disrespected his customers. He could hardly avoid it. Someone who likes to stand in front of a large audience telling them how it really is tends to have some deep needs that, for all the sharing, never get shared with his/her disciples.
And so it may be with Nicole Daedone. I have no problem with her book -- you buy it, you take it or leave it. But I'm not sure you need to pay $49 for a "badge" that gives you greater access to her web site. Do you really need OM Stroke Lube? Or the OneTaste Signature OM Kit? More seriously, I note that several people who are no longer affiliated with her now speak about her crusade as a cult. If so, curb your enthusiasm.
As for the book and the technique, I can't fault her words: "Whatever you do, make sure you're doing it out of desire. It's the only compass you've been given in this world, and you can trust it. It may not lead you where you thought you were going, but it will never lead you astray."
[Cross-posted from HeadButler.com]