Updated: Apr 22
This earth, the plants around us, other peoples gifts and your own body are all designed to be explored, enjoyed, and indulged. People often vilify those who seek pleasure, explaining that it is selfish, or morally corrupt. I personally feel like if you seek pleasure in all things then you would be someone more likely not to be self-centred. In my mind helping those around you brings you joy as much as eating some fresh warm sushi, maybe not that much, but as a hedonist it's unlikely that you will hate interacting with people, be a big fat complainer or go out of your way to do things that screw other people over.
Now I know that I am often naive in thinking that everyone is equally as hurt when they hurt other people as I am. I believe the desire to do things despite how they might hurt another often comes from a fear of lack, or a desperation because your own emotional, financial, or security needs are not being met. If you are one who over indulges there is often a deeper need that is not being met.
Sometimes it takes mothering ourselves, allowing the inner child to be nurtured and cared for to learn what is required to live a fulfilled, pleasurable life.
I know for myself when I hear the word hedonist there is a bad connotation. I think that comes from the assumption that pleasure is referring to sexual pleasure and that alone. In my mind I hear a pastor yelling "and he the hedonist was banished..." lool whaat, so I might have some unresolved feelings towards the church. I'm working on that.
It took me reframing pleasure from sexual to a simple enjoyment on a sensory level. Tasting a delicious spoonful of ice cream, to the feeling of freshly shaved legs in our beds, the suns light quietly warming your skin and enveloping you in an ethereal hug, smelling a freshly baked pan of cookies and of course looking at a piece of art. This also extends for me to seeing someone happy. It is finding pleasure in everything that you do, to me a different form of gratitude.
I think to be someone who can give without expectation of reciprocity, you need to be at peace all on your own and that comes from experiencing life for all of its offerings both enjoyable and painful. We are creatures designed to feel.
I guess that's why I feel like I am a hedonist, not because I don't slip into other directions but because my main goal in life is to find joy, peace and friendship.
What are your thoughts? Do you think you can be a hedonist and also be selfless?
Namaste my loves,
This post was inspired by Episode 203 of The Sex Magic Podcast Why are we so resistant to pleasure? I definitely recommend you go check it out.