by Katie Silcox, author of Healthy Happy Sexy

What is pleasure-power? Pleasure-power has everything to do with cultivating our ability to feel and experience pleasure in daily life—in and out of the bedroom. It’s about getting quiet and content enough to experience the immense beauty that is always present when our senses are tuned in.

There are many ways to build this pleasure-power. When we use the basic principles of Ayurveda, we will undoubtedly have enhanced sexual vitality. Specifically, the text says that we will “get stimulated like a bull.” And while I kind of love the idea of being as potent as a beefy bull, we should be aware that Ayurveda is not only referring to our increased ability to successfully ignite our partner’s flame, but also an increased strength and vitality to create in the world, whether that be birthing a baby, becoming a doctor, or knitting a scarf. 

Throw your women’s magazines straight into the trash, because here  are Ayurveda’s aphrodisiac techniques for boosting your pleasure-power:

  • Anoint yourself and your beloved with fine oils—when was the last time you were anointed?
  • Massage your beloved. Receive massages from your beloved.
  • Perfume your body. Chemical perfumes do not stimulate the sexy vixen within. Find an all-natural scent such as jasmine or honeysuckle. Give a musky scent to the man in your life.
  • Take a bath. If it can be outdoors, even better.
  • Be beautiful. It is said that there is no better aphrodisiac than pure beauty. And this is not related to any particular beauty standard, but refers to the lustrous radiance of healthy skin, clean body parts, bright eyes, clean nails and groomed hair.
  • Better your digestion and elimination. It’s hard for a person with chronic constipation to feel sexy. Similarly, chronic pitta leads to strong breath, body odor, and skin rash. Chronic kapha brings about a heaviness to the personality and a sluggish demeanor. By cleaning up our doshic imbalances, we clear the channels for sexual expansion.
  • Wear a garland. This may sound outlandish (or just Hawaiian), but women in India today still walk around, conducting their daily business, with decadent streams of intoxicating jasmine flowers in their hair. What would the Western world feel like if women suddenly decided to drape their bodies in orchids at the office?
  • Hear adorations. We build our sexual potency by being adored. If you are single, it doesn’t matter—the adorations can come from any loved one in your life.
  • Create a clean, comfortable living space. There is nothing that kills the creative mood quicker than dust bunnies and old cartons of take-out. Clutter and hoarding dampen libido.
  • Buy flowers. Flowers are the sexual organs of plants. Having them in your bedroom will entice sexual longings.
  • Invest in fine bedding and soft clothing. The ancients knew how important thread count and buttery-feeling clothing were for sensual feelings. My motto: ’Tis better one cashmere sweater than a closet full of fake fabrics.
  • Hear the chirping of happy birds. The fact that we don’t have enough happy birds in our bedroom windowsills may be related to why stressed-out city folks have less sex drive. If you can’t house birds, then spend more time in nature.
  • Wear things that tinkle and sparkle. There is something so sensual about the clinking of a woman’s bangles as she goes about her tasks. Apparently, men in ancient India used to go wild for the sound of a gal’s bracelets. Sigh. Those were the days.
  • Walk, talk, and breathe with yourself or your beloved, in nature. Sometimes just a moonlit walk can shift us into the ambitionless, pleasure-experiencing side of our brain.
  • Indulge your beloved with sweet speech. Save the, “Honey, can we talk?” conversations for later. To stoke desire, sit together in silence and breathe, or lie down together and just stay present to the miracle of your beloved’s breath.
  • Shift your expectation around outcomes. It may be more fulfilling to think of your partner not as someone who will go off on a hunt to bring you your pleasure, but as a witness to or participant in the unfolding of your pleasure from within. In the throes of passion, it can be transformative to get a little distance between the act of flesh and blood and the soul that exists inside the body. Pay homage and respect to the soul-jewel that lies in your arms. This is a doorway into deep love and deeper sexuality. If you are single, you can still practice appreciating others in your life for who they are—seeing their beauty without regard for out

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