We’re living in a fast pace these days and it’s easy to get disconnected – from yourself and your lover. Think about it… When many of us live our lives sitting at computer screens and a text message can suffice for what used to require the effort of a phone call, it’s no wonder we lose track of the moment and of each other!
No matter how much you and your lover may drift – or even if you’re as close as ever – a spiritual gift this holiday that can bring you even closer… you’ve just got to get Zen about it!
What does that mean, you wonder? The highest state of consciousness in Zen Buddhism is nirvana – the point at which the physical body is left behind and the soul experiences nothingness. While this may sound kind of depressing to the unfamiliar seeker – and certainly nothing like what we want to experience when in a love relationship – really, it’s quite the opposite.
The Art of Zen is the experience of being in the present. There, you are aware of your senses, attuned to your surroundings and harmoniously connected with the world as an energetic whole. Think about it, that’s exactly as we’d all like to be with our lovers. Zen is all about clearing the mind and connecting to the moment… and there’s no reason that moment shouldn’t be a sexy one!
The ultimate you
One of the sweetest (and most affordable) things you can do for your special someone is dedicate a night to them. Sounds simple, right? But so often it’s not. When was the last time you turned off your cell phone/Blackberry/iPhone, refused to check your email and didn’t just flop down in front of the TV? There is no better way to be in the moment than to cut the cord(s) to all power – other than the power of attraction of course!
What you choose to do with your time together is up to you – just make sure it’s sensual. Take a hot bath, wash your lover’s hair… give them a foot massage and don’t stop there. Set the stage for seduction (candles, incense, whatever you like) and remain focused on the moment. You both may have work to do and responsibilities to attend to, but they can all wait until morning (you can even leave an outgoing message saying you’re unreachable for the night). The key is to unplug from your day to day and plug into your lover!
A dirty kitchen
While a typical romantic celebration may include exclusive, expensive restaurants, the Zen approach suggests something simpler. Something that will engage both of you in the task at hand and allow you to enjoy each other as well as a meal… something like cooking together! If the very thought of an oven is enough to make you break into a sweat, don’t fret! Preparing a hands-on meal together can be just as much of an adventure for a non-cooking couple as it is for food junkies. Even more so because it requires going off the beaten path!
Whatever your level of skill with a Cuisinart, remember that the point is to be actively in the moment – together.So, rather than something fancy that requires loads of focus and detailed attention, try something fun like making pizza or homemade pasta… Getting a little messy together can be just what you need to re-connect with your sensual sides. If you just relax and let go (a little wine, perhaps?), it can make for (and lead to) a lot of fun.
If you’re really adventurous (or already a pair of yogis), the ultimate Zen gift may just be a class in the Tantric Arts (after all, it’s worked for Sting and Trudy for all these years, hasn’t it?)! A little web-surfing can find weekend seminars or even one day events in just about every area – and some are even free. There are private sessions and group classes – even books if you want to start small (and private) to see how things go.
In addition to extending your love making sessions overall, Tantra teaches couples to breathe together and thereby truly be together – elevating sex to a whole new level (as well as deepening your connection to the present and each other).
None of these gift ideas cost a lot of money, which is really the point, isn’t it? Give your lover what they really desire most – you! And you’ll be a little closer to nirvana in the meantime.