Touch is a language we cannot afford to forget. Touch is the first sense by which we encounter the world, and the final one to leave us as we approach death’s edge.
‘Touch comes before sight, before speech,’ writes Margaret Atwood in her novel The Blind Assassin (2000). ‘It is the first language and the last, and it always tells the truth.’ Our biology bears this out. Human foetuses are covered in fine hairs known as lanugo, which appear around 16 weeks of pregnancy.
Some researchers believe that these delicate filaments enhance the pleasant sensations of our mother’s amniotic fluid gently washing over our skin, a precursor to the warm and calming feeling that a child, once born, will derive from being hugged. Touch has always been my favourite sense – a loyal friend, something I can rely on to lift me up when I’m feeling down, or spread joy when I’m on a high. Lately, though, touch has been going through a ‘prohibition era’: it’s been a rough time for this most important of the senses.
Updates on everything new at Aeon. When Lovers Touch, Their Breathing and Heartbeat Syncs While Pain Wanes. Summary: Study explores how interpersonal synchronization could help to decrease pain. Source: University of Colorado at Boulder. Fathers-to-be, take note: You may be more useful in the labor and delivery room than you realize. That’s one takeaway from a study released last week that found that when an empathetic partner holds the hand of a woman in pain, their heart and respiratory rates sync and her pain dissipates. “The more empathic the partner and the stronger the analgesic effect, the higher the synchronization between the two when they are touching,” said lead author Pavel Goldstein, a postdoctoral pain researcher in the Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience Lab at CU Boulder.
The study of 22 couples, published in the journal Scientific Reports last week, is the latest in a growing body of research on “interpersonal synchronization,” the phenomenon in which individuals begin to physiologically mirror the people they’re with. About this neuroscience research article Abstract. No hugging: are we living through a crisis of touch? When did you last touch someone outside your family or intimate relationship?
I don’t mean a brush of the fingers when you took your parcel from the delivery guy. I mean: when did you pat the arm or back of a stranger, colleague or friend? My own touch diary says that I have touched five people to whom I’m not related in the past seven days. One was a newborn and two were accidental (that was the delivery guy). Touch is the first sense humans develop in the womb, possessed even of 1.5cm embryos. In countless ways social touch is being nudged from our lives. Sensing this deficit, a touch industry is burgeoning in Europe, Australia and the US, where professional cuddlers operate workshops, parties and one-to-one sessions to soothe the touch-deprived.
Receiving Touch: The Art of Sensuality. There is no sexy without sensuality.
I define sensuality as noticing and enhancing my body’s sensations, through attention and touch. Sensuality exists inside and outside of sex, yet good sex can’t exist without sensuality. I find I am my most sensual when dancing, when stroking oil onto my skin after a bath, or when I’m outside, hiking and running my fingers over plants and grasses, leaning into pine trees to smell their sap. It used to be that I placed my attention outside my sensations during sex. Instead of focusing much on how things felt, I wondered how my belly looked. In the past few years of conscious sexual practice, my attention has shifted to how sex feels. I have that right as a human enjoying her body, as we all do. We hinge a lot of expectation on sex.
What is conscious touch? - Conscious Touch Foundation. The Healing Power of Touch - Betty Martin. Are you using touch to just get off, or are you willing to slow down and see what the touch you give and receive is bringing?
Touch is a magical force that allows the human animal in you to soften, relax, and open. In this episode erotic adventurer Betty Martin shares her experience with the healing power of touch and gives you very practical advice on how to maximize your safety and pleasure. Is our culture sexually jammed up? [11:00]Where is your ‘pleasure ceiling’ and how is it impacting your relationship? [16:00]Betty’s ‘Waking Up The Hands exercise and how to test your pleasure capacity [18:00]Understanding the ‘Wheel of Consent’ [25:00]The fallacy of ‘she liked it yesterday’ [29:00]The difference between a request, an offer and an invitation [32:00]The hidden dangers of desire-smuggling [36:00]What to do when someone asks you what you want but you don’t know [39:00]The 3-Minute game to understand what you and your partner want out of touch[40:00] How to play the 3-Minute Game.