The Search for Connection
by Max Joost

When my relationship of four and a half years ended, I acted as though everything was normal. But when I was alone, I felt lost and cried a lot. I started searching, but I didn't know what for. I found out about OM and met with some people involved in the practice. 

By then life was going well and I had a new girlfriend, and we decided to OM together. Our first OM was light and joyful, even though I didn't know much about women's genitals at the time. When she said, “Hey, you have to stroke the clitoris,” I couldn't admit that I didn't know what or where the clitoris was. I just kept stroking somewhere else. But afterwards, we were laughing and joking, and I felt happy. When I went home, I looked up the clitoris online, and our second OM went better. 

My girlfriend moved away, and I found another OM partner. It was different with her. I didn't feel much of anything in my body for the next ten OM sessions. I was sweating a lot and feeling basically numb. Other strokers told me to keep trying, and the sensations would come. Finally, I started to feel tingling in my body, and from then on, I could feel more and more. The framing step of the OM process, when each partner describes a sensation they had in the session, gradually taught me to find words for what I was feeling.

Sometimes during OM I had psychedelic experiences, with sensations like flying. I felt nourished by OMing, just as if I were eating a nourishing food. Later on, when I was with more experienced strokees, I had a sense of being complete and perfect, not needing anything at all. 

My health also improved. If I felt as if I was coming down with a cold, I would OM, and then the symptoms would be gone. Lots of things that used to bother me were no longer problems. I felt so good in my body, so much lighter; annoyances slid off me. 

What I was learning in OM began to appear in a parallel way in the rest of my life. The way an OM is made up of strokes, so are conversations. In an OM, you learn to notice when there's a peak, when the sensations for the strokee are about to decrease, so you have to change the way you're stroking. I began to have the same experience in conversation, feeling in my body when I needed to shift what I was speaking about in order to keep the conversation going. I'd notice, I want to say this because it feels like the right thing to say. On the other hand, my body would not feel so good if someone I was talking to was not being truthful. 

It helped that I became able to say what I was feeling. In the past, my conversations had been much more mental, but now they were emotional. I got in touch with my anger too. Before, I would put on a smiling face no matter what. Now I learned to speak up when someone said or did something that upset me. 

For the first time, I also had access to messages that were unspoken. I had never been able to pick up on what people were saying if they were being indirect. For example, I wouldn't notice if a woman was attracted to me. She might be giving me hints that she wanted to get closer to me, but I couldn't read those messages unless she came right out and said what she wanted. OM practice made me more intuitive, so I could understand what was going on. It taught me so many different ways of connecting to people, on so many levels. And I realized connection was what I had been looking for all along.