A Prayer for You When Silly Religious Dogmas Are Trying to Kill Your Arousal

I hear it all the time:

“My religious upbringing is a major inhibiting force of my sexuality.”

And. . .

“I was taught against my sexuality by my [pastor, priest, rabbi] for so long that even though I no longer practice or believe in [religion], I can still hear their voices loudly in my head while trying to have sex.”

And. . .

“They [pastors, priests, rabbis] were so adamant in sex only being experienced between husband & wife that it’s hard for me to make love to my long-term committed partner—even though we love each other & want to spend the rest of our lives together.”

And. . .

“I can’t masturbate without thinking that what I am doing is wrong in the eyes of God.”

Me too.

Even after all of these years, even in the practice of the work I do. . . the feelings of sinfulness, of depravity, of being impure, implanted by passionate sermons & dogmatic beliefs, still rise up inside of my mind & body.

And it hurts. And it’s stupid. And it kills my libido.

But when it happens, I take in a deep breath & exhale. And while I am letting air spill from my lungs, I envision that those ugly thoughts & ancient, misguided beliefs are being expelled from me, like hot steam from a whistling tea kettle.

And then, I say a prayer—to God, to Aphrodite, to Source, or to Whomever it is that is listening Here—one that acknowledges, honors, & recenters my sexual beingness.

It changes nearly every time I conjure the words, but it often sounds a little like this. . .

My sexuality is good.
My sexuality is pure.
My sexuality is Holy.
Because it was created by You.

The juicy things I’m feeling in my body—they were created by You, for Your pleasure, with Your Great Love.

The juicy things I’m feeling in my body—they were created by You, for my Pleasure, with your Great Love.

And through these juicy feelings, through my arousal & my eager search for pleasure, I worship You;
I worship this Body that You have created;
I worship the richness of feeling & being;
I worship the gorgeousness of erotic energy.

For my Glory. For Yours.

I know with my whole heart that You would not create such impulses, such desires, such layers of feeling as a morbid test that proves my devotion to You. I know with all my heart you are kinder, graceful, more sensual than that.

I know with my whole heart that sexual energy is just one other way to commune with you.

And so I do. With all of my might, with all of my heart, with all of my body & soul.

Thank you.

/ / /

Sometimes, this prayer works. Sometimes it wards off those heavy, dark ideas of sin & impurity, leaving absolutely no trace of their slimy, unwelcome sensations.

Sometimes, the prayer, even when said with sincerity, isn’t enough. Sometimes I need a shower to cleanse myself back to a place of sexual liberation, & then I can come back to conjuring sex magic.

And sometimes. . . I need to say “Not today” to my sexual urges; sometimes I need to cease & desist & give space for those harsh feelings to dissipate—allowing however much time is needed: hours, days, weeks, as hard as it is.

The point for the prayer (aside from wanting to get my groove on without those libido-killing thoughts in the back of my head) is that I am consciously rewriting my own spiritual history; that I am making beautiful space for my spirituality to form in a holy, accepting, sex-celebrating container; that I am honoring the holiness of erotic energy in a way that I’ve never been taught to before.

It helps. It’s not a permanent fix, but it helps.

My prayer for you. . .

May you know peace in your sexuality.
May you find a spiritual practice that celebrates its sacredness.
May you celebrate the beauty of erotic energy as a form of worship.
May you feel always at ease that your sexuality is good, holy, & pure.

(Important Note: That’s the way it’s supposed to be.)

Like a Bitch in Heat: How I Embrace My Wildish Nature in Sex

The best sex I’ve ever had started with desire, with that undeniable pang of lust in the pit of my belly that said, clear as crystal: I want you. Then, spontaneous & strategic touch, playful flirtations, suggestive tones of voice, & eyes that say, “Get me while I’m hot.”

Then. . . open-mouthed kisses; my body pressing heavily onto his; hands grabbing, gripping flesh; fingers fumbling to undo clasps & laces & zippers; heavy, synchronized breathing.

Then. . . guttural sounds that seemed to come from the bellows of the ground beneath me; wetness from sweat, from spit, from arousal; thrusting hips—deeper, deeper, faster, faster; hot, fiery heat; teeth & nails; pulsating climaxes with unfaltering eye contact; total surrender.

And afterward. . . a smell of salt, of musky-sweetness wafting through the air—sweat mixed with cum mixed with my own sweet nectar; heaving chests swallowing big gulps of air, throbbing hearts ready to burst, & eyes & mouths that still cannot stop searching for each other.

“Sex is animal activity.” —Osho

When I am unwaveringly in carnality, when my body is buzzing with unreserved horniness, when I am hyper aware of my nakedness, my wildness, my animalness, I have the best sex of my life.

In those moments of total animalistic beingness, there’s no preoccupation with my stretch marks or whether I’m messing up the sheets or worrying about my cries of pleasure disturbing the neighbors. I care about nothing. I know nothing. All that exists is pleasure & my ravenous hunger to claim it with my body.

Like a bitch in heat.

More & more I’m realizing (& vividly experiencing) the connection between sex/sexuality & my wildish self—that is, the self that is not dignified or docile, but feral, fierce, & maybe even a little savage; a side that I’ve been so accustomed to suppress.

Because wildness, while liberating, can be an absolutely scary, ferocious thing. In wildness, there is no control; no fences, no masters to request permission from—just our instincts, our compulsions, our need to feed.

In wildness, anything can happen. Vile things are capable if we gave way to it: teeth gnashing, mouths foaming, eyes flashing, blood spilling.

There is a wild animal in us all with vicious, licentious tendencies. And we often keep this animal caged away as a way of protection.

We suppress our wildness to protect the innocent. Understandably.

For me, however, that caged animal—my caged animal—never fails to break free during sex.

No locks can hold her, no ropes can bind her. Sex stirs & instigates her, rattles her cage, riles her up, brings out her fury. She busts loose, & no matter how hard I grip her chains, digging my heels into the ground, fighting with all of my might to get her to mind me. . . she rips & roars & has her way.

And rather than fight against her (because it is utterly exhausting), I’ve begun to let her have her way, to give her space to roam wild in desire & wreak a little havoc, to allow her to satiate her innermost hungers with abandon.

But. . . I keep her on a long leash—that is (to keep with the metaphors), I stay conscious.

I let her have her way, but I don’t walk away from her unsupervised; that would be totally irresponsible of me. No, I remain a vigilant witness. I see it all, my eyes fixated on her movements, even (& especially) when she’s getting crazy. I watch her closely, staying present to her fierceness.

In doing this, she transforms into a not so scary, not so threatening being. Her wildness becomes beautiful, something magnificent to behold, a powerful force of nature that requires deep honor & reverence.

Consciousness in wildness creates a safe space for our animalistic natures to be fully explored.

And this, of course, doesn’t just apply to sexual expression. This can be harnessed in exhibiting fierce self-love, in speaking our truths, or in expressing & releasing dark energies—anger, fear, sorrow.

Wildness needs space. Wildness desires freedom to be expressed. And sex can be an easy way to curiously explore our wildish tendencies, if only we remember to keep a mindful, watchful eye on it.

You’ll know when you’ve wandered into wild territory when your beloved looks into your eyes after an unrestrained sack session, their breath harried as they wipe their brows, saying hoarsely:

“Damn, honey. What got into you?”

How to Make Love + A Mixtape to Fuck to

Make love like you are light, like you are trying to fill your partner’s body with light. Fill her mouth, her belly button, her eyelids, her cunt with that light. Dance with it. Imagine that this bright, beautiful light is warming & filling her body to the brim. This light is orgasm, consciousness, love. You are light.

Make love like the only thing you can do is to surrender to pleasure, to let it tease & tickle you like pretty voices & flicking tongues. Imagine that you are being blindfolded by pleasure as it takes you by the hand & leads you through treasures of the senses. Trust in pleasure. Surrender to its game.

Make love like you are a Sacred Whore, as if you are bestowing your erotic blessings onto your partner. Show him the Divine through your touch, through your breath, through your sexual beingness. Imagine that between your legs lies the answer to the question, “Why are we here?” Answer his question. Show him God.

Make love as though you are dancing, as though your limbs & breath are synchronized, as though you are being moved by the rhythm of your pulses. Fast, slow, fast, slow, back & forth. Imagine that the music is universal; that even after the fucking is done that you can continue to dance to this beat. Stomp, flail, step to this spiritual beat.

Make love like you are trying to pollinate flowers, like you are orbiting the sun, like you are conjuring magic, like you are creating sparks that will singe hatred from the earth.

Make love like the orgasm doesn’t exist.

Make love like it is the thing you are best at.

Make love play.
Make. Love. Play.

/ / / / /

Music to make love to: A sultry mixtape for getting your erotic pulse beating harder, stronger, faster. . .

When I’m feeling amorous, these are the songs I’ll play. When I play these songs, I feel amorous.

My body awakens, my ears perk up, my eyes close in pleasure. I love good, strong, throbbing beats, wild atmospheric sounds that make your skin tingle, & voices that croon unapologetic desire in your ears.

Play this mixtape whenever you’re gearing to play with (or coax out) sexual energy. Play it when your erotic pilot needs to be re-lit. And definitely play it when you’re making love to yourself or to your partner(s).

Listen with headphones & turned up loud to get the full effect.
Let it move & groove you. Don’t stop your body from involuntarily swaying.

how to make love with sound from ev_yan on 8tracks Radio.

1. Angel // Massive Attack
2. Slowly // Amon Tobin
3. Fantasy // The xx
4. Papi Pacify // FKA Twigs
5. Eclipse/Blue // Nosaj Thing (feat. Kazu Makino)
6. Betray // Son Lux
7. Look // Sébastien Tellier
8. Phantasm // Flying Lotus (feat. Laura Darlington)
9. Come to Me // Björk
10. Glory Box // Portishead
11. Let The Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel // Atlas Sound

Quick note: If you’re an avid reader of SLL, you’ll notice that #4 will sound familiar. The song was the central theme of an article I wrote recently about kink & sexual expressions. If you haven’t read it, you might consider listening to it as you read along. It’s a juicy one.

I Deserve to Take Up Space

Press play below to listen to me read this article aloud to you (turn the volume up). 

Player not showing up? Click here.

/ / / / /

I have become so good at making myself small, of keeping a low, cramped profile so as to not draw attention to myself. It is second nature now for me to stand, speak, & be in ways that keep me from taking up space.

It first started as innocent shyness, keeping myself small—a subtle kind of humbleness; a holy, noble martyrdom. Then, it began to mutate into something more dangerous: meekness, insecurity, shame.

No one thought to pull me out of that dark, stuffy pit designated for me—no one truly wanted to. A nice girl is meek, they resounded. A pure girl gives up her space, they reinforced. Sacrifice. Back-step. Apologize.

Good girl.

And so I learned. I learned how to not be the one who takes up space, for she—the space-taker—is a steamroller, “a moving mountain,” an ancient tree whose roots damage cemented foundations.

Her energy is bigness, raucous, unapologetic. She is loud & demanding. She makes others uncomfortable because her truth is often stiff & challenging. And she is capable of exposing the truth in you, upturning rugs that cover dirt & dust & bones from your past.

She doesn’t want to be good, doesn’t want to please or sit still. She only wants to blossom, to grow her lengthy stems up & up, thriving in light, becoming & transforming wherever she occupies.

This is why she’s so dangerous.

No wonder I was taught against her. No wonder her presence is abhorred. Why would anyone want to be that woman? Who would willfully choose to spur or embody her colossal, unwavering spirit? Certainly not me.

And then I read it somewhere, this short & sweet sentence that emboldened me to think about taking up space (or, essentially, to examine how little space I was taking); I can’t remember where I found it. It was just six words, seven easy syllables; simple & to the perfect point. . .

You deserve to take up space.

It was then the proverbial record scratched & I could hear this small, muffled voice inside of me simultaneously go, “Who, me?” & then rejoice, “Oh, yes. This. Finally!”

I read it again. And again. And again once more, each time feeling like that tiny little voice was being resuscitated, as if the words were waking up parts of me that I didn’t know ever existed—the sleeping giant, the moving mountain.

And then I realized that this—this dangerous truth, this powerful wisdom—was what I’d been seeking my whole life; this was the truth that could finally (finally!) take me home to myself.

But before that ecstatic voyage, an interruption of disparaging thoughts courtesy of my Critical Voice:

How could you possibly take up space? You’re not a space-taker, you are a wallflower. You’ve existed so long crammed against these walls, you have no idea of what it means to be big. And anyway, if you take up space, you’ll leave nothing else for the rest of them.

I could feel myself shrinking back into that cramped space, that too-small fishbowl. And as my Critical Voice continued to prattle on & on about all the ways in which it was impossible, irresponsible, reprehensible for little ol’ me to take up space, that tiny small voice—the one that, in the beginning, rejoiced so happily, Oh, yes, finally!—it seemed to burst up & out.

No, it boomed.
You are wrong, it defied.
I belong here.

And so it has been.

I’ve been sitting with this voice & this notion of taking up space for months now, unsure of how to actualize it into reality. I mean, how does one claim space? Is it a psychic expression, an energetic shift of perception, or must I literally go around town saying aloud (or to myself) “Mine! Mine! Mine!”?

But the biggest question that continues to come up for me is: Who am I as a space-taker? What forms does she take within & without me? What truth does she have to speak?

I began to write it out here, & this is what came through unfiltered:

I am a moving mountain. I am expansive energy.
I have thunder in my voice & fire on my breath.

My laugh is lightening. My eyes are lazor beams.
My hair is a lion’s mane. My wisdom is crashing, salty waves.

I am large, bigness; I contain multitudes.
I am unafraid of invoking reactions, truth, emotions in others.
I am unafraid of my power to shift the energy of a room. 

And no longer will I martyr myself.
No longer will I apologize for occupying space that is rightfully mine.

I will not shrink.
I will stand tall & big & wide. I will rejoice in my capacity.

I belong here.

And you. You do, as well.

Reader Question: How Can I Explore & Get More into My Kink?


fetish // john murphy

(Note: Occasionally, I get a question from a reader that is compelling enough to become its own article. This is one of those questions.)

Dear Ev’Yan,

I have been quietly reading your blog while also coming to terms with my need for erotic play in my sex life. The thing is I don’t know where to start. I enjoy the submissive role and my partner is interested in being in the dominant role. Neither one of us really know how best to play our roles to fulfill each other that way and need some ideas/guidance. Can you steer me in the right direction? 



Good on you, Talia, for wanting to get to know & express your kinky side! As for where you should start. . .

First, start with. . . Self-Exploration

The word kink means a lot of different things for many people. So begin by uncovering what kinky means to you via self-exploration (& maybe even a little masturbation).

Ask yourself. . .

  • What words & images come up when I think of kink?
  • What things do I associate with kink? (i.e., colors, sensations, images, objects)
  • Who’s someone that embodies these kinky characteristics? (a celebrity, a fictional character, etc.)
  • What does it mean to me to be a submissive? What does it mean to be a dom?

If you’re having trouble coming up with images or words, think about your fantasies. What erotic imagery gets you off? Are there any kinds of kinky porn that you gravitate toward watching? What about sensations that you’re aching to feel at the height of your arousal? I bet you’ll see some themes arising. Feed off of that as you continue to unearth & play with what kink means to you.

Next, try envisioning who you would be as you act out these expressions of kink. How do you see yourself embodying kink? How are you behaving? What are you wearing? How are you talking? As a submissive, what would you like to be done to you? Journal it out; use lavish words. Make it into a story of some sort.

This is meant to be a playful & curious kind of exploration—no right or wrong answers, no rules, just whatever comes up naturally as you think about it.

And remember: this is your unique expression of kink, no one else’s. Feel free to pull inspiration from others’ expressions of kink, but know that you can make yours look & feel however you want it to.

Next. . . Open, Honest Communication with Your Partner

Whenever you’re ready, bring the pieces you’ve collected during your kink exploration to your partner. Share with them whatever you want them to know: your definition of kink, what it looks like to you, what you’d like to explore. You might also ask them some of the questions you asked yourself as you were exploring to get a clearer idea of what their kink looks & feels like. Be sure to create a safe space for the two of you to speak your desires, your concerns, & curiosities.

One thing you two should definitely do together: Start thinking about what kinky acts you’re interested in exploring. Babeland has this awesome list that they hand out to people when they go to their workshops. It’s called the Yes/No/Maybe list*, & you can recreate this for yourself & your partner.

Start by sectioning off three columns on a piece of paper, & in each column write one of these words: YES, NO, & MAYBE. Then, from a list of sexual acts, write down in a respective column where those acts land for you: as a Yes, a Maybe, or a definite No.

So, maybe spanking is something you’d like to try; you’d put that in the Maybe column. Golden showers. . . not your schtick; you’d put that in the No column. And so on. Have your partner do their own list, too. Then, compare each other’s lists. Is one of their No’s one of your Yes’s (or vice versa)? Are you both into some of the same stuff?

It’s so important to have these kinds of open dialogues, as they help to form strong boundaries around what you two are creating for each other as your kinky expressions are explored.

And of course:

Consent is of the utmost importance as you explore your kink. Make sure you & your partner are prepared to honor each other by renewing that consent with check-ins & heart-to-hearts about how you’re feeling—before, during, & after.

Then. . . Playful & Curious Experimentation

By now, you & your partner should have a good, solid list of some things you’d like to try with each other—likely to be found in the Yes & Maybe column of your lists. The only thing left to do is try it on for size.

Feeling a bit daunted by where to start with your lists? Start with some light pain-play, like spanking & biting (start off slow & light, & work your way up to test your pain thresholds). Dirty talk & commands can also help the two of you dip a toe into your dominant/submissive roles. Start there, & see what happens. Just make sure that you & your partner are both fully aroused before you begin experimentation.

Another thing you two could do is watch porn together that portrays the kind(s) of kink you’re into (& that’s where that Yes/No/Maybe list will come in handy).

Whatever you start with, go forth & get your kinky on.

And finally. . . Heart-to-Heart Evaluation

So, how was it? What was it like to play as a submissive? What was it like for your partner to play as a dom? Was there anything you especially loved? Anything you tried that wasn’t your cup of tea?

Be honest about your experience—with yourself & with your partner. Whatever didn’t work, toss aside. And what did work for you, keep playing with. The most important thing is that you’re both vocal about how you feel, & that you feel comfortable asking for what you want. Establishing trust & maintaining safety (which are must-haves for kinky sex!) is created through honest feedback & continued checkins outside of playtime.

Know, too, that it’s not uncommon for sexual acts that were once a total Yes! to somehow turn into a No with time (& vice versa). That’s totally OK. These expressions can be quite fluid (as can your own arousal), & if/when it happens, just shelve it & move onto something else (or, pick it up & give it a go).

Again, this is your kink, your expression. You can make it look & feel however you want it to.

But above all. . . keep exploring it, & try to maintain a state of innocence & curiosity about it. Exploring your kink should never feel like an obligation.

This is just the tip of the kinky iceberg.

The ideas written here are far from exhaustive. There are hundreds of books & articles out there that will help you continue to explore your kinky side, as well as cover more extensive topics, like consent with kink, safe words, & the like.

Here are just a few resources that’ll inspire you as you continue to explore erotic play:

// Fetlife.com [NSFW]
// Exhibitionism for the Shy, Carol Queen
// Radical Ecstasy, Easton & Hardy (also check out: The New Bottoming Book)
// PrettyKinkyThings.tumblr.com [NSFW]
// The Art of the Blowjob (the last page is a great resource for tips on communication)
// 150 Shades of Play, Em & Lo

*I took the liberty of scanning a page in Babeland’s book, Moregasm, which gives a pretty stellar list of sexual acts that I couldn’t find anywhere else.

Be safe, be consensual, & have fun!