The following excerpt is taken from the new book, The Secret Pleasures of Menopause, by Christiane Northrup, M.D. It is published by Hay House (October 15, 2008) and is available at all bookstore or online at www.amazon.com.
Experience Unlimited Pleasure
We humans were born to experience unlimited pleasure and joy. It’s our birthright. Pursuing pleasure and also allowing ourselves to receive it on a regular basis are absolutely essential to creating and maintaining vibrant physical and emotional health. That’s right—the pursuit of good feelings is not an indulgence. It’s a life-affirming necessity! Pleasure in all its many forms literally stokes our life force (our chi or prana) in the way we’d stoke a fire by throwing another log onto it.
Think about the last time you really steeped yourself in something pleasurable—when you took that positive feeling right into your bone marrow. Maybe it was savoring a bite of gourmet chocolate, the smell of salt air at the beach, or an exquisite back rub. Everyone has a distinct pleasure profile, and you can count on your senses to let you know when you’ve dialed into yours. Remember the intensity of your pleasure. (If you can’t remember what it feels like to lose yourself in bliss, hang around a two-year-old for five minutes.) When you’re lost in the joy of pleasure, you are, in that very moment, renewing your cells, increasing your blood circulation, and creating health on all levels—body, mind, and spirit. In fact, you’re probably getting a healthful boost right now just imagining that wonderful experience all over again!
Another way to understand how potent pleasure is as a health enhancer is to imagine what happens when you aren’t feeling any of it. Think about a time when you were totally burned out. You probably felt like you were running on empty, right? Guess what? You were! It wasn’t just energy you were lacking; it was vital life force. Compare them in this way: Energy is what it takes to get through the day. Vital life force is what it takes to put spring in your step as you get through the day. See the difference?