I spent several years with a mysterious illness that caused me trouble with concentrating, debilitating food allergies, and constant fatigue. It took me a year and a half to find out I’d suffered from intense mercury poisoning and to finally start pulling the mercury out. Once that was done, though, my problems didn’t go away.
The experience left me feeling hyper-vigilant about everything in my environment. It all felt like a threat. I was afraid to go out to restaurants or bars because I feared I’d eat or drink something that would harm me. I’d lost faith in my body’s ability to exist in the world.
It seemed there was some kind of mold poisoning in my girlfriend’s and my apartment. So, we moved out and started living in an Airstream trailer. It was basically a hyperbaric chamber made of metal, so it wouldn’t grow mold. That way, we could travel the country and feel safe. We both had the same issues, in terms of our medical diagnoses and our psychological responses to them.
My girlfriend’s brother had been taking a lot of courses about Orgasmic Meditation and recommended it to us. I began talking to an OM coach and it started feeling like I was making progress psychologically. We took the class to learn the OM practice and had two OMs the next morning. In the middle of the second one, I felt this searing hot flame in my chest. I’d never felt anything like it before. For no clear reason, I wanted to cry. We walked outside and all of a sudden I started breathing really heavily. I had to lean against the car. My chest was heaving for 30 seconds as if I’d sprinted up 10 flights of stairs. ‘I don’t know what’s happening,’ I remember thinking, ‘but this is for real.’
We started OMing regularly after that, but still felt sick and like we had to be really careful. One time, we noticed the lights in a room changing and we were afraid that meant there was something toxic in the room. That’s how bad it was. Everything in our environment that could conceivably be a threat was flagged and avoided. There’s very little left in life when you do that.
As my girlfriend and I threw ourselves into OMing, I got better at recognizing my own emotional state and being able to sit with my feelings. Before, someone might have looked at me and said, “You seem angry.” I’d say, “What are you talking about?” Instead, I started to be like, 'Oh, I am angry. It’s OK to be angry. Why am I so angry?' By being more open, honest and gentle with myself, I became more sensitive. Now, I can sense what’s happening in myself and others.
We all have a kind of furnace that drives our bodies, our minds, and our spirits and OM threw wood in that fire. I used to sometimes smell the proverbial smoke when I felt particularly emotional. Like lots of guys, I’d been conditioned to be stoic and not feel my feelings. Through OM, I started to feel a certain richness in all my bodily sensations and emotions. More energy could move through me. As I began putting attention on my feelings, I’d notice when I was feeling scared, excited, turned on, or hateful—and I stopped judging those feelings. I allowed myself to just have my feelings.
OM was the first thing I’d encountered that was more powerful than my ego and larger than my own ideas and thoughts about the world. It was like I’d been wearing headphones all my life and OM let me take them off and hear what else the world was telling me. I no longer had all my attention on my health and whether I was going to die early or contract some horrible disease. I even started to feel better physically.
I went from seeing the world as a threat to seeing it as a place of abundance and opportunity. Any feelings contrary to that were simply my fears. I started to feel at home in my own body and my own mind. I felt connected to my spirit. It was like my inner fire woke up.
Over the first year of OMing, my heart opened like a glowing bright sun in the middle of my chest. I went from someone who cared about one or two people, reluctant to share my heart, to someone with a superpower to love lots of people. I discovered that human connection fuels and supports everything. I didn’t need to be stingy with my love because nobody could do me harm.
Today, I’m living my life to the fullest because OM showed me what the fullest is. I embrace every emotion I feel. OM woke up my body and continues to keep my body awake. I have more compassion for others; I can let them be themselves and I can be myself. I am truly free.
Matt Pelletier is a 40-year-old computer programer living on the West Coast.