August 26, 2014

Inviting Abundance

satya at work

Welcome to the final installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Satya, a Mastery Grad from New York City, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Inviting Abundance! Satya, Age 31 – Fashion Entrepreneur & Creative Director This […]

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August 19, 2014

Owning and Operating Men

Jane hub duo

Welcome to the seventh installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Jane, a Mastery and Creation Grad from Connecticut, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Owning and Operating Men! Jane, Age 78 – Soon-to-be-Author, Retired Family Counselor […]

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August 12, 2014

Partying with Your Inner Bitch

Jocelyn MG

Welcome to the sixth installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Jocelyn, a Mastery Grad from New York City, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Partying with your Inner Bitch! Jocelyn, Age 35 – Comedian & Director […]

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August 5, 2014

Owning Your Beauty

Mercedes SGs

Welcome to the fifth installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Mercedes, a Mastery and Boot Camp Grad from New York City, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Owning Your Beauty! Mercedes, Age 38 – Actress, Dancer […]

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July 29, 2014

The Art of Flirtation


Welcome to the fourth installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Laurie, a Mastery and Boot Camp Grad from Michigan, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Flirtation! Laurie, Age 65 – Retired Nonprofit Director The Art of […]

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Hero v. Heroine


How do we know that we’re successful in the world?

One of the aspects of a patriarchal culture, like the one we live in, is that we’ve all been taught a definition of what success is. We’ve been trained to go for certain markers that demonstrate success – external events, or circumstances that our culture adores and elevates.
You know the ones–
The guy. The baby. The job. The salary. The waist size.

But how do you ever feel that you’re really there? What is there? I mean, really, when does the little pixie fairy in the sky arrive, ready to serenade with her tabernacle choir, and sing the “You’re there!” hallelujah chorus? I am still waiting for mine. What does it take to feel successful, to approve of yourself, to celebrate your thereness? And then, when you are finally approaching the neighborhood of there– what do you do when life throws you a crazy curveball, and everything falls apart?

We live in a culture that teaches women to be kind of like corrupted men. We’re trained to be Heroes, versus Heroines.
And it’s not working.

Any time we have ‘man up’ to ‘get the job done’, an essential part of our nature gets left in the dust. And we tend to do that over and over and over again.
Throwing on a suit to work in a cube farm- whether it’s actual or metaphorical, is clipping your woman wings.
We need to install a new internal navigational system, that guides our lives. It’s not that the destination changes — you still want the guy, the baby, the job, the salary — but the path, the journey, the way to get where you want to go, is completely different for a woman.

In today’s post, I want to unpack this a little more. What is the Hero’s Journey that is driving so many women, in a way that keeps them stuck and unhappy? What is the alternative? What does the Heroine’s Journey look like, and how can you lean into its powerful embrace, as you unfold your legend?
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Last week, we talked about the epidemic of “fine” in women. Actually, we didn’t just talk about it, we detonated “fine.” In case you missed it, you can read it and join the conversation here.

This week, I want to take you deeper into the gold that lurks underneath “fine.” After a lifetime of being taught to cut ourselves off from the full spectrum of our emotions, we need some help sinking into them and moving them through.

Fortunately, we have music to transport us to a place of connection. You know how a piece of music — a lyric, a phrase, a note — can unexpectedly connect you to a deep emotion? Well, that is the perfect place to start feeling more, and unpacking “fine.”

I have a carefully curated playlist that will yank your fine chain and allow you to connect with the gold inside.

Play the list loud, and see what comes up as you dance, move, roll around, throw pillows, stomp, moan, and connect with your dark side. I suggest you click on one and play it right now. (And when you’re done, tell us about it in the comments below!)

Dance Your Darkness Playlist:

If you have a different favorite song for dancing it out, share it below. I can’t wait to hear your stories and learn what lies beneath your “fine.”

In so much love and pleasure,


I am sure you have noticed.
Babies cry every single day.
Sometimes briefly, sometimes inconsolably.
They also laugh every day. Not to mention wriggle, crawl, bounce and flap.
And they move smoothly from emotion to emotion: wailing, then settling back to a set point of happiness pretty easily.

Nothing like a woman.
Women are encouraged to avoid our own wail. We suppress our rage. We are taught to cut off from our unhappiness, overstep our discomfort and bypass our deep grief and sorrow.
This detour around the truth creates a huge consequence.

How are you doing, since you two broke up? “Fine.”
How are things going since your mom died? “Fine.”
You lost your job? How’s the job hunt? “Fine.”

A woman’s life gets utterly lost to her in one harmless word: “Fine.”

She never really learns herself as a woman.
She never moves on.
She never learns to grieve.
She gets stuck in the permanent formaldehyde of “fine.”

No one who is fine ever has great sex.
No one who is fine ever falls in hot sexy love with their divinely destined partner.
Or creates a bestselling book, a career that inspires, an ecstatic family life, or inspiring friendships.
No one who is fine ever changes the world.
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I just got back from Paris. With 80 gorgeous women. Their beauty makes me weep; can you see what I mean from these photos?

sepia Eiffel 3 SGs

Why Paris?
The food? The architecture? The museums? The Gauloises?
No. Not really.

There are no words to describe the pleasure we each got from all of those things. But that’s not why Paris.

We were there in hot pursuit of a space, a place, a time.
Hot pursuit of a spell that was cast.
And each of us was filled with the passion and an insistence to cast that spell again.

I take my entire Creation Course to Paris to connect with the Courtesan.
Why Courtesan? I know what you are thinking…you are thinking “prostitute”—and I want to open a new doorway in your imagination.

I want to invite you into the world of the Courtesan. In this case, the Courtesan for the twenty-first century. For centuries, successful Courtesans were the freest women on the planet. From fifteenth-century Rome to nineteenth-century Paris, courtesans charmed and advised Europe’s most important leaders, seduced their way to power, wealth, education, and sexual freedom. They were the arbiters of style, fashion, and trends. Courtesans had the right to own property, to control their own money, to be educated, and to choose their lovers. They cultivated the Womanly Arts. This was a far cry from the other women of this time, who had none of these privileges. Even noblewomen from wealthy families were considered the property of their fathers and husbands. They were denied all the freedoms we take for granted today. Actually, feminism arose because of the courtesan. Women saw the freedom that courtesans possessed, and wanted to experience that for themselves.  continue reading…

miriam head shotMiriam: When Mama Gena and the Palace Staff asked my mother and I to share our story here on the blog, as a way to celebrate Mother’s Day, I wasn’t sure at first.

This the first time my face is front and center in a blog, let alone amongst that pink fluff, you know? And to give you a sense — my favourite clothes were black, blue and some grey until the age of 23 (more of my story later).

Yet, it’s a huge honor to share here. And I’m so touched, because I love this community. I love my mom, and I’m really proud that we get to do this work together.

I was in Mastery for the first time last year, and now I’m on Team Pleasure (the volunteer staff) while my mom, Estela, is a Mastery student this year for the first time.

I hope you enjoy reading a bit about our story, how we each found our way to the School of Womanly Arts, and what’s been possible since.


Miriam: I didn’t feel very close on an emotional level to my mom growing up. I saw her as a woman who worked very hard – always running after the kids, working long hours, waking up at 5 a.m. to do laundry, and collapsing after work to take a nap before she made delicious dinners for all of us.


Estela: I was a busy mother, Miriam being my first of five. She has always been completely responsible, I always trusted that she was doing the right things all the time. When she was 3 or 4 years old, she would wake up before me in the morning to give her younger brother his bottle of milk. I never instructed her to do that, she understood it by herself. I used to call her “Mary Poppins.” I have been a mother struggling with life, and Miriam has been at my side.

Miriam: I always loved her very very much, I just didn’t quite understand why she wished she looked better, or why she wasn’t quite so happy in her skin, in her role, in her place in life. My parents’ relationship was rocky, so I attributed a lot of it to that and my heart always hurt a little, especially because, seriously, my mother is the most beautiful woman, and in her twenties and thirties she was flat out hot, and I wished she knew that and felt that in her skin, deep deep deeply within.

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