Gotta Watch: Quodoushka Testimonials
- Amara Recommends Myers Coctail with Dr. Robyn Benson February 7, 2015
- Touching the Sweet Spot February 4, 2015
- Sex and Intimacy joins the Self Care Revolution January 22, 2015
- What’s the Purpose? ~ Angela Yan January 3, 2015
- Donate to the Himalayan Stove Project on #Giving Tuesday December 2, 2014
Welcome To Amara’s Blog
Welcome to the Amara Charles blog. This area of the website is my personal playground of creativity, expression and thoughts. It’s where you can learn more about me and what I do. These are the topics and experiences that are most special to me. I hope what’s here will inspire you with passion and hope for the future.
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Something magical happens when we touch the sweet spot, that place where there’s no distance, there’s only heart stretching in every direction stripping down the decoys against love we put in the way. Anything unreal, anything we try to hold onto, all the hurts, wounds and transgressions we’ve made, crumble like brown sugar the instant that spot gets touched.
How do you touch it?
Here’s the secret: treat the sweet spot of the heart like a lover, and just let go.
Let go of trying, let go of the past, let go of the goal, let go of thinking. Just let go and listen with great sensitivity because if you do, you’ll start to notice she’s lurking, she’s waiting inside any moment. The sweetest spots, where our bodies moan, where our minds breathe and we get so open our love pierces through the impossible; this is what makes life liveable.
The trick is to not make a big deal of our sweet spots (they’re quite shy and don’t like to be exposed), so please excuse me for telling the tale of a dear sweet spot that opened in a most unexpected way.
I was talking to a woman going through a rocky time in her marriage. She was certain she had communicated honestly about an attraction outside her marriage and was angry with her husband for saying it was ok, only to find out later, it was not ok at all. Since I was coaching her, and hadn’t met her husband, I suggested we do a Talking Stick session on Skype.
Within the first few minutes I saw he had locked up feelings about some things that happened. Part of him wanted his wife to explore her attractions, but he was also reluctant to show how freaked out he felt. He didn’t feel safe because everything was moving way too fast for him. I could tell their conversations brought them further apart, stirred up fears of loss, and they both needed to protect themselves.
Now here’s when something remarkable happened on Skype. I could see and hear them sitting together in the comfort of their living room. I became the observer witness, simply facilitating a space that lifted the walls of their hearts.
You see, in a talking stick session, one person speaks and the other must repeat what they hear the other say. This simple practice is the best way I know to break through times where it seems everything you say pushes you further and further apart.
I saw it happen; for a few passes of the stick, instead of repeating what he heard, he added his own reactions. She then withdrew when he didn’t repeat the gist of what she said. This is how it often goes when somebody’s isn’t listening on Skype. Whether our favorite rebuttal is mud slinging, withdrawing or silent treatments, both are vying to be right. Ever notice it’s utterly impossible to touch the sweet spot from here?
The talking stick makes it hard to sling reactions or pull away, and especially on Skype, when you know someone else is watching, you have to listen or else you won’t be able to repeat what you heard the other say! So instead of trudging down the same old slippery slope, the guide slows everything down, saying things like, ‘Is that what you said?’ and ‘Do you feel heard?’ Then the other person has the chance to say, ‘No, that’s not what I’m saying . . . What I REALLY mean is…’
Repeat until you can say, ‘Yes, that’s what I said.’ Then, and only then, pass the stick.
Actually, a Talking Stick could be called a listening stick because the secret to coaxing the sweet spot to pop out more often is to slow down and listen. The stream of pretense we hear in our head only stops when we switch the channel to a better station ~ our higher self ~ long enough to actually hear what somebody else is saying.
The shift happened in the silent spaces of this Talking Stick when it became clear she hadn’t seen the ways he was doing his best, and he hadn’t felt her care and compassion for him. Fortunately, although it was only the beginning, I knew from what they wrote me the next day, how tenderly they opened for each other. I can only imagine the sweet places they may have explored through the night…
Quehestemehah ‘You Dance In My Heart’
Listen to my Self Care Revolution with Dr Robyn Benson of Santa Fe Soul
Is sex and intimacy an integral part of intimate health? Of course it is! So why is it so often excluded in mainstream health conferences and why is the topic reserved to backroom conversations (where what’s really going on) is discussed by everyone?
That’s why I celebrate Dr. Robyn Benson’s bold invitation to include the topic of sex and intimate health to Doctors and healers at the Health Clinic Santa Fe Soul in New Mexico.
Help spread the word about how the wise use of sexuality can benefit all sentient beings. Be a part of the Self Care Revolution and take care of your intimate health.
A talk with Dr. Robyn Benson after our ‘off the charts fabulous’ Shiva Shakti Workshop in Santa fe. We introduced Shamanic ceremony to heal wounds of the past to make space for more intimacy and pleasure in our relationships. And we shared sexual restoration practices to boost libido and increase sexual energy.
Everyone loved it! We’re invited back to present Quodoushka in Santa Fe next year for the first time… woo hoo.
I totally resonate with Robyn’s message about taking responsibility for our health by becoming more aware and wise.I believe intimate happiness can change the world. As our relationships heal, so does the world.
Dharma Healing Retreat with Master Angela Yan
Our new year was blessed with Master Angela Yan’s ten day visit to our home. The profound Dharma stories that come rolling through her day and night slip in and out of my mind like heat from the fire and the taste of good things. Days begin with bowing and chanting followed by eggs, porridge, toast, jam, butter, coffee, and lots of unknown fermented veggies. Along with non-stop conversations like this:
If you do not have time to do nothing, you are not wealthy at all. Take the time to enjoy your life. That is wealth’ she’d say.
One day Angela decides she would like to get a massage, another day go to the spa, and then she mentions she’d like to do a workshop.
So a few days later she did. As people enter our house, Angela sits by the fire, makes tea and begins: There are thousands of techniques. But this is not what matters. Everybody can do this technique, that technique. What is the purpose? What’s the real purpose of what you’re doing?
One couple comes over for a Qigong healing session and they’re anxious to go into the healing room to get started. But Angela has tea first, and seems to talk about many unrelated things for over an hour. What they don’t realize is that there’s nothing to start, it’s all part of the healing. How you relax, how you talk, how you move, what you say and what you don’t, it’s all part of the healing. I watch her opening people, finding her way in. Some people get this and others do not. Neither concerns Angela, both are the same.
A good teacher, she says takes out darkness. A good teacher can see you. Finds your darkest parts and maybe stirs them up. It’s not somebody who says how wonderful you are, how good you are, how great you are. No. A good teacher leads you only in the right direction.
Everyone wants to make you into a doctor, a wife, a lawyer or something you are not. they want you to become something. But who are you without these things? A good teacher is not someone who wants you to memorize and remember and repeat back what you hear them say. A good teacher removes what is not needed to point you in the right direction. What’s the right direction? You. Your wisdom. Your natural self. she says.
But people are deluded. They do not know what they do not know. A good teacher shows you how to live.
So many people want to be healers, she says, but if you do not know how to swim, how do you teach people to do that? Stand outside the water and tell them? First you better learn how to swim. Cook up your wisdom.
How do you do that? Chant. Chanting is not a human language. It cannot be explained in human language. You better just do it. Find out out what it can do. Then maybe you will gain some wisdom. Be more humble. Respect. The more of this you have, the more you will get. ok? A good teacher does nothing for himself, it’s for you. All of it, everything is for you. A real teacher always has people behind. She has a lineage. This is very important, who stands behind you. You must pay attention to.
Be more humble, she says to me many times over the days of our retreat. ‘pay attention. don’t talk too much. ‘
Ok. I better just do it.
Om Mani Padme Hum
Watch an amazing Video of ANGELA’S QIGONG HEALING
I just donated to my favorite foundation, which I’m very proud to play a small part in…
If you would like to help out the Himalayan Stove Project, simply visit their online donations page. Every little bit helps, and on Giving Tuesday, those contributions are going twice as far. Give now and Your donation will be matched. $100 dollars delivers a stove to a family in need.
A while back Shyena and I helped deliver clean burning cook stoves in the Himalayan region. It was one of the most memorable experiences of my life.
There’s no cars on the way up to Mt. Everest, so stoves must be delivered by people and animals who can make the trip.
Our good friend George Basch is the ‘chief cook’ who coordinates this extraordinary project. I’m amazed by what he’s doing to help the people live with far less pollution in their homes as they cook.
Enjoy pictures from our trip!
l More …
I know when you’re in a tidal wave of love, when things are flowing sweet, when Eros is all around, being grateful is like breathing. But what about after you’ve made a major mistake?Is it possible to get to gratitude when it feels like your ship is sailing in the wrong direction, when happiness fades and fine platitudes are the last things you want to hear? We’ve all had times where all we want to do is dig into a pit of sorrow, where, even if we know wallowing wont work, we do it anyway. This is when getting to gratitude really counts. But how can we feel grateful when everything seems closed, and hopeless and dark?
Here’s four big reasons why gratitude beats regret and resentment, every time.
Gratitude Feels Better
Of course we’d rather be tingling with gratitude every minute of the day, but the truth is, sometimes we choose to mope with pain, stew in our resentment or just lounge around trying not to think too much. Usually while we’re licking or barking about our wounds what we really need is attention; we want somebody to know we’re hurting. The trouble is, while it keeps us busy, it also keeps us in the pit longer. Gratitude is a way out.
Gratitude Takes Less Effort
All we have to do is More …
I’ve come to think that just about anyone loves permission to talk about sex.
Once you you peel away the veils that like getting lifted, I notice it’s the same everywhere I go. And I love hunting Beauty wherever it lands; coaxing it to peek through the shyness, enchanting it to smile, wonder or sing just a little bit more than it should. I like taking down the weight of walls nobody likes holding up.
It’s how I hunted Marianne, a Jew from Uzbekistan sitting next to me on the plane from JFK To Phoenix. Even before I notice all the yamakas and delicious scent of food passing across the aisles, she catches my eye by the way she covers
her hair and keeps tugging her skirt to cover her legs. But it’s how she inadvertently keeps brushing back her two year old’s soft brown curls that really has me smitten.
A lot of kids get cranky at take off, but Samuel stares wide-eyed out the window and giggles the whole way up. He seems blessed with an unusual dose of gentle intelligence.
It was Marianne who convinces me that given the time, a curious mood and the right questions, just about anyone will tell you anything . We start with casual banter about the Jewish holidays and then her nose flares slightly when I
tell her what I do. In her world of conservative Jews, no one’s written a book about sex. So she’s clearly delighted to me a few tell me things about her husband, all the while glancing at the floor to guard affections.
As Samuel begins to tire, I offer her a few tips and she asks for my card. I’m writing in the darkness when she says ‘You should put the light on. It’s bad for your eyes.’ Exactly what my Mom used to say to me as a child.
I must have the Shakti shine all over me because when I go to the back of the plane to get water for tea Regina, the Black, South Korean flight attendant and I begin doing it again. I think people like talking to strangers, especially ones like me.
In 3 minutes I know she’s going down in beauty. First she tells me about her trips to South Korea with her Buddhist family, saying ‘I feel like an alien American duck. They touch all the time..” And then she whispers into my
ear, ‘My mother even massages my brother like it’s no big deal.’
The conversation heats up as I pour more water into our paper cups of puer tea.
Regina edges back whenever I mention relationships. I can tell she’s itching
to talk and I know she’s hiding something. So finally I ask, ‘Are you seeing anyone?’
‘Yes’ she says, ‘I’m very much in love with someone I’ve known for a very longtime.’ The final cup of tea yields a tentative proclamation: ‘It’s a woman.’
“Well I’ll be‘ I say. ‘ I live with a woman too!’ We’re already FB friends.
New York was the perfect cherry of our global Shakti adventures meeting
succulent women from Germany, Croatia, Sloyania, Wales, China, Iran, Russia, Tibet across the US and Texas.
When I got home at 1am the electricity was out. I could’ve mulled over the meaning this, but instead I called APS in the morning. Apparently, I was informed, ‘Your power is disconnected due to lack of payment.”
Ah yes. Paying bills. So good to be home for a sec. I’m actually writing this en route to Kauai and Maui for our Quodoushka Intimacy Retreats..
Quehestemeha You Dance In My Heart
P.s. Still time to register for the November Q2 in Phoenix..
And for men and women we have Quodoushka’s in Phoenix, Texas and a new SHIVA SHAKTI workshop ~ an introduction to Spiritual Sexuality in Santa Fe,NM January 9-11 2015.
Thank You Shakti Queens!
Your beauty inspires such good love, intelligence, and kindness. Many blessings and love to you all.
A Special Thanks to Shakti Queens Yvonne Gyory, Ana Krpan, Kelly Clampitt, Joella Autirino, Isis Phoenix, Luba Evans, Annett Zupke, Luce, Molly:) and of course, Joe and Llyod.
We love you.
Om Mani Padme Hum
Shyena and Amara www.amaracharles.com
p.s. Send us More Pictures! Especially from North Carolina Shakti… I will NOT publish them, but I want to see those Goddess Pictures ~ thanks!
DONATE HERE to the HIMALAYAN STOVE PROJECT http://www.himalayanstoveproject.org/
I cannot say enough about the passion and integrity of George Basch’s dream of delivering clean cook stoves to families in the Himalayan region. I LOVE this video, and I’m proud to play a small part… (I’m in the video because Shyena and I went on one of the first trips to deliver stoves to monasteries and people’s homes. It’s an amazing story, and really helps people change their lives, yet, let’s them keep their life style (around the hearth) in it’s place.
Donate Here: https://www.facebook.com/himalayanstoveproject
Please share your Fire and consider donating. Every dollar brings warmth to the Home, Heart & Hearth of those in need.
Please share this with your Friends
Dr. Richard Hauser wrote:
Every once in a while,
I need to stop. Just stop. And then just stop some more.
I need to sit. Just sit. And then just sit some more.
I need to breathe. Just breathe. And then just breathe some more.
Every once in a while,
I need to listen. Just listen. And then just listen some more.
I need to cry. Just cry. And then just cry some more.
I need to connect. Just connect. And then just connect some more.
Because I forget.
I forget what life is really about.
I forget that life is really about love.
I forget that I need to accept love as well as give love.
Because I remember.
I remember how much I have to give.
I remember how much I am blessed.
I remember how wonderful I really am.
So today I stopped, and I sat, and I breathed, and I listened, and I cried, and I connected, and I found love, and I found blessings, and I found my wonderful self.
It was a miracle of life day for me today.
And I accept it.
The words you sent to me today inspired this miracle.
So you accept it.
I Love You
From: Amara Charles
To: Richard Hauser
EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE
I love you too Richard. This is so beautiful. I’m totally inspired. Can I post this on FB and my site?? These are such excellent words from an Alpha Male.
You may post it. If it helps one other person, I would be honored. Richard
These are some of the common Questions people ask about Quodoushka Spiritual Sexuality Workshops.
Can I come to a Quodoushka Workshop without a partner?
Yes! You may attend Quodoushka I and II as a single or attend with a partner.
For Quodoushka Three, you must attend with a partner.
Is it better to come with a partner? More …
Some journeys change everything.
Words capture so little of the truth about extraordinary events, and to be honest, I hesitate to dilute how I feel from our retreat in a mountain Temple of Wutai Shan,China. Yes, I’m used to coming home stirred and happily out-of-sorts from deep ceremony, but this time, having taken a plunge into the refuge of temples, sacred chants and boundless tea, I feel like a puzzle piece still assembling unknown mysteries..
How do you capture the fragrance and unfurling plume of fine sandalwood incense, or the taste of rare puer tea that causes your heart to float in heavenly realms? How can you remember being locked into the fathomless depth of a teacher’s eyes? Perhaps we do keep memory imprints of such times, and maybe we bury moments of peace and love into the soil of our minds so we can recognize certain vibrations and water these frequencies until they bloom on their own again and again. More …
Our amazing journey continues!
Feeling fresh and and full from our visit to Hamburg and Croatia (stopping in Istambul for for a massage (we hope!).
Our D Y E N and Feminine Erotic Intelligence Workshops were stellar. The the depth, the food, the land… fantastic. Most of all it’s the people we’re so moved by… such a deep transfer of feelings, wisdom and laughter… Yes, there’s been hesitation and a reluctance to open, at first. More …
Jade Egg for Sexual Restoration
Why Sexual Restoration is Necessary?
It’s no longer a secret that feeling sexy is an important aspect to vibrant health. Women everywhere are starting to realize that we cannot always wait for the right moment or the perfect partner to get our sexy back.
The good news is that you don’t have to wait; you already have everything you need to begin an integrated body – mind – spirit practice to feel that warm hum of sexy energy flowing through your body. It is a new time for women; a time for open communication, sharing and renewed awareness about how we can stay happier, healthier and younger.
Yin Way Practices
I have been presenting and developing Yin Way practices over the last twenty years because I have found feminine ways, ways that are both gentle and invigorating that work remarkably well for women’s health.
What makes the Yin Way Practices so unique is not that the methods are so different from yoga, or other forms of Qigong, in fact, they are all easy to do. I have created a system to to blend the tranquil Yin meditative exercises together with vigorous, active Yang exercises in a balanced way. Most importantly, through the Breast, Vaginal and Ovarian exercises, we include sexual restoration exercises in our regular practice. Plus, of this is done in a way that nourishes women in an empowering, feminine way.
The Yin Way Practices includes methods my partner and I have gathered from various teachers, especially female teachers who embody the essence of feminine power, wisdom and grace.
Here is the method behind our body – mind – spirit integrated approach for women to get their sexy back.
Yin Yang Principles
“Feminine strength does not push or control, rather its power comes from compassionate wisdom and offers a perfect compliment to its Yang, masculine counterpart. Without Yin, or water, the Yang, or Fire, burns too hot and eventually extinguishes itself. Yes ladies, there is strength and beauty in being women. We are needed, and in turn, need a healthy connection to that which is our opposite to be truly balanced. No woman is an island, rather she is the water surrounding the island that permeates and nourishes all life. Let us endeavor to keep our energy clean and vital, together.”
Sarina Stone www.Taolady.com
What Does the Jade Egg Do?
The Jade Egg is a marvelous way to strengthen and control More …
Scars and Tears Claraderm Spray
by Catherine Works
The best product that I have used post birth is Young Living’s Claraderm spray. It’s a blend of, Myrrh, Frankincense, Tea Tree, Lavender, Roman Chamomile, Helichrysum in a coconut oil base. It is incredible for skin rejuvenation, especially for healing scars and tears. I used it straight on the stitches on the perineum post birth.
I used it 5-6 times per day and gently massaged it in (basically every time I went to the bathroom I sprayed it on). I went through several bottles of this in the first 2 months after birth. It’s not cheep, but its worth every penny. My scar has healed quickly, no residual pain on the scar, or the skin surrounding, and has impressed the practitioners at my checkups!
No one talks about them, but most women get them. The pressure of pushing a baby out can cause a strain in the rectal area and which causes swelling of the tissue, and even bleeding when you pass solids. They are super painful (for me it was even worse than giving birth every time you poop).
My solutions are: Sitz bath, (the hospital should give you one, or you can buy one at the pharmacy) you can add warm water and Epsom salts.
You can add a drop of essential oil to the salt before you put it in the sitz bath (any of the oils from the below blend). Its best to sit in it for 10 mins several times per day.
I found that a bit painful as I was split from top to toe and had a lot of stitches and the sitting stretched the skin a lot. More …