Do you feel connected to the erotic?
The word “erotic” has been co-opted by media, but the original meaning is less about sex and more about truly connecting with your body. When we experience the erotic, we transcend above thought, above ego to something much more divine.
In today’s episode, we’re talking with Rie Katagiri, the conscious movement educator and embodiment coach behind Erotic Movement Arts.
Rie first connected with her own body through yoga, but it wasn’t until she tried pole dancing that she realized what she was missing. She’d unknowingly been keeping part of her sensual energy locked up, and through erotic movement, she finally set it free.
After years of practicing, studying, teaching conscious movement, she opened her studio Erotic Body Movement to help others connect with their own bodies.
Now, Rie guides her students back into their bodies to experience the erotic and heal the rift between body and soul.
Join me in today’s episode as we discuss the healing powers of the erotic, the difference between eroticism and sexuality, the effects of the male gaze on our sensuality, and practicing reverence for our own bodies.
Listen to episode 366 now!
In episode 366 of the Embodied Podcast we discuss:
- [8:11] Rie’s journey to the erotic arts and turning them into her career
- [14:25] Finding the courage to connect with your body in a real, erotic way
- [18:30] The erotic as the source of your hypersexualized persona, not the other way around
- [22:43] Opening up to the beauty all around that you’ve become desensitized to
- [31:19] Erotic movement as an escape from the male gaze and the hypersexualization of women of color
- [48:54] Separating eroticism from extraction and the bringing back “erotic’s” original definition
- [52:50] Rie’s inspirations and artists that exude erotic energy
- [58:58] Moving beyond the ego and into the body’s experience
- [1:01:50] The power of reverence for our own bodies and experiences
Resources mentioned by Rie and Elizabeth in the episode:
- Learn more about Erotic Movement Arts
- Explore Rie’s virtual and in-person classes
- Join Erotic Movement Arts Teacher Training
- Shakti Movement Medicine Training: Get $50 off the program by using code: allwildsouls
- SHAKTI MOVEMENT MEDICINE PROGRAM beginning Oct 15th. Join Module 2 “Union with Shakti” by using code: wildsoul2
- Apply for my 2022 Embodied Specialist Training.
- Check out The Embodied Living Center.
- Email us with questions or feedback.
- Don’t miss an episode of The Embodied Podcast.
Quote from this Week’s Episode of the Embodied Podcast:
- “We can intellectually be turned on by something and not feel anything to the body.” – Rie
- “The senses have everything to do with the erotic.” – Rie
- “You can’t separate embodiment from the erotic.” – Rie
- “The ego wants to be able to defend whatever you say, explain whatever you’re saying. And the erotic experience is beyond thought… And the more we practice this way, the less we feel we have to defend and explain ourselves.” – Rie
How was this episode for you?
Was this episode helpful for you today? I’d love to know what quote or lesson touched your soul. Let me know in the comments below OR share the episode on Instagram, tag me your stories @elizabethdialto, or send me a DM!
About the Embodied Podcast with Elizabeth DiAlto
Since 2013 I’ve been developing a body of work that helps women embody self-love, healing, and wholeness. We do this by focusing on the four levels of consciousness – physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.
In practical terms, this looks like exploring tools and practices to help you tune into the deep wisdom of the body and the knowing of the heart, which I believe are gateways to our souls. Then we cultivate a new relationship with our minds that allows the mind to serve this wisdom and knowledge and soul connection, rather than override it, which is what many of us were taught.
If you’ve been doing self-help or spiritual development work for a while, these are the types of foundational things that often people overlook in pursuit of fancier concepts that often aren’t practical or sustainable. Here, we will focus on building these strong foundations so you can honestly and thoroughly embody self-love. If you’re feeling it, subscribe to the show, and leave us a review wherever you listen from. You can also keep up with show updates and community discussion on Instagram here.
Transcripts for Episode 366:
– Hello, everybody, and welcome to episode number 366 of the Embodied Podcast. Today we have a very special person to me on the show, Rie Katagiri. Rie is my erotic movement mentor, if you will. I have been exploring erotic movements since 2010, but it wasn’t until 2020 actually that I ever did a formal training in the arts. Rie is a Los Angeles-based somatic explorer, movement educator, choreographer, and embodiment coach for film, TV, and live events with over 20 years of experience in healing through bodywork and movement. She’s the creator of Body Lab, a training program for filmmakers and artists to help guide creatives to move out of the conceptual mind and into embodying their work. She’s also the founder of Erotic Movement Arts, a pleasure guide, a movement method, that integrates the sensual female-centered yoga, Qigong meditation, and sacred dance which awakens the vital life force of erotic energy. And this is how I found Rie, in the summer of 2019. I am always looking for places where I can go receive, and I’m really picky about where I go. And I found Rie’s studio in Los Angeles when I was still living out there. And it was just, it just quickly and deeply became one of my favorite, favorite spaces I’ve ever been able to practice in and receive from. So I’m so excited to have Rie here. We had a winding, delicious conversation about all things erotic and eroticism. It’s so good. I’m so excited to share Rie with you. Please enjoy the episode. This is episode number 366. So remember, this is on YouTube if you’d rather watch, and if you need closed captions, the transcript is embedded at untameyourself.com/366 along with any links to anything that we mention in the show. So enjoy, enjoy, enjoy. Let me know what you think, share this up, and let’s get into the show. Rie!
– Yes, Elizabeth! It’s so nice to be with you.
– I’m so happy. I’ve been trying to get you on stuff for a while, but then it’s like one or the other is like, “We just gotta wait.” I mean, I have a lot of friends like that, and then it just always works out when it works out.
– Absolutely, and what a great time to connect, in the beautiful fall. It’s almost Durga’s time, and I know she’s so special to you.
– How’d you know that?
– It’s Navaratri.
– Yeah, when is that festival?
– October 7th in India, so it’d be the 6th here, October 6th, and it’s the nine days from that point, celebrating her slaying, basically.
– So my opening question for everyone this season, like this fall season, has been, how is your heart?
– Mm, oh, right to the heart. Here we go.
– You know how we roll.
– Yes, my heart is very full. Yeah, just really available right now for everything.
– A lot of grief, a lot of bliss, a lot of pleasure, a lot of, yeah, just a lot of ache and grief for the suffering, yeah.
– That grief piece, so during the pandemic, like, I was already a pretty good griever. I mean, whatever that means. I guess what it means is like, I’m not a person who avoids grief or will try to rush myself through it. That’s not always true. Sometimes I will try to rush through it. But during the pandemic, it’s just like the proportion, like the amount of things to grieve, especially as people who care about others, the amount of things out of our control that are like so horrendous, that we’ll never be able to do anything about, I feel like my heart is just, I like how you said available. So intense. So for everybody listening, I mean, we do a little introduction, but Rie is so special to me because I am, I was jokingly, but not really jokingly, call it, I am like a facilitation snob, you know? I’ve been to so many things. I teach so many things. Like holding space, like all that stuff is so important to me, and so it’s rare for me to find a place or a person where I can go and feel like really held. And Rie is just one of the people, for me, especially when I was like starving for that. It was the summer of 2019, right?
– What’s July? ‘Cause it was a July. It was something. Oh, and this is funny.
– I think it was you, me, and Miss Shakti.
– Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. That’s what it was. And so, and I think I told you this before, but “My Cousin Vinny” is one of my favorite movies ever. So I actually found you because I was following Marisa Tomei on Instagram, and I guess you all are good friends. And she had shared something with you, and I’m like, “Who is this person?” There was like something about it. I’m like, “She seems…” You must’ve been dancing or something or whatever. So Rie was my, I mean, I’ve been doing erotic movement for like 10, 11 years now. 2010 was my first time at a pole dancing class. But Rie teaches Erotic Movement Arts, and I actually hadn’t done a certification in a really long time, but I did her certification in 2020 ’cause I was like, “Ooh, all right, it’s time.” It’s something I had shied away from for a long time of teaching ’cause I wanted it to be for me, but then it was like, I can’t not… This is how I friggin’ move anyway. So I guess let’s start there. I just wanted to let people know how special you are to me and why I appreciate you so much.
– Aw, thank you. I appreciate you so much.
– Okay, what got you, I probably know this, but I don’t remember, what got you into the erotic arts?
– Yeah, good question. I would have to say the older I get, the more I can see how my youth, my childhood, things from my upbringing has led me to be doing what I’m doing right now. And so there’s sort of two answers. There’s like the connect the dots version, which I’ll give you ’cause that’s really short. I was already teaching yoga, and so I would say yoga was the introduction to conscious embodiment ’cause before that, I was a typical L.A. girl, like partying, working in the, whatever, food industry, entertainment industry, just like any job. Just having a good time. And then I had an an injury, and then the injury took me to yoga. Yoga took me to bodywork, to shiatsu, to understand energy and chi and self-resourced healing. And I was quite resistant having these things become my career. I just thought, “This is something I do for myself,” but I had other thoughts about what I would be doing for work. And then with the insistence of my yoga teacher Ana Forrest, who is still my mentor, she was like, “You need to teach this. You really need to teach this.” Because I would get all kinds of, I worked at a recording studio, and I would get all kinds of people who couldn’t even touch their knees. They’re so tight. They’re always sitting from a mixing board. I had this ability to bring anybody to yoga, you know? And she’s like, “That’s rare,” right? To just get these guys who can’t even see past their beer belly to wanna come to a yoga class. They don’t even, they haven’t exercised in any way, but somehow have this like energy to be able to get people, like, “You’ll feel better, try it.” And so it was in that teacher training that I discovered this fantastic world of embodiment and energy and mindfulness and philosophy from India as well as Native American medicine because my teacher, her medicine is Native American medicine. So I got to have sort of both world come in at the same time, which was so rich for me. And so I was teaching that, and, I have to say, I was really in my element. I felt great about it. And then a friend of mine, really good friend of mine, I was a massage therapist as well, and I was massaging her, and I saw all these bruises on her legs. And I was like, “What are those bruises from?” She was very shy to tell me. She was very shy. She said, “I’ve been pole dancing.” And I was like, “You’ve been holding out! I wanna go, I wanna go!” And so I got introduced to S Factor in Los Angeles through my dear, dear friend Maureen. And it’s amazing that I’m telling you this story right now because she’s one of my best friends who I think I shared with your teacher training group last year that a dear friend of mine had died. At the end of maybe module two I found out. And so it was her. It was Maureen who introduced me. And so I’ve been, she’s been in my heart so much right now. So, yeah, just wanna, a little universe shout out to her for connecting me. Yeah, so that’s how I got in. And it really, I just came in as like, “This is gonna be something fun and a new way to move.” And having that yoga background, I was able to connect to a totally different way of being in my body with courage. It was very different and scary at times, like, “Is this okay? Is it okay for me to express myself this boldly, this sexually?” And I think it was because I had such a bad-ass teacher in Ana Forrest who really was about dissolving the shame in your body and in your mind so that you can be, you can start to heal your nervous system. And, yeah, so that’s how I ended up falling in love with the erotic, and then that path led me to really deep tantric dance work. And that was really it for me ’cause you connect immediately to the goddess.
– Okay, there’s a couple of things here. I wanna go back to the courage piece. So I’m always… And, actually, I batch podcasts interviews on some days. In a previous interview that I just literally did a couple of hours ago with my friend Trudi Lebron, which is already up for anyone who’s listening, that was episode number 363, we were talking about how, and I bet you have this experience too ’cause your work is so healing, how sometimes people will come to my work and they’ve done a ton of therapy. And they’ll do just like not even that much embodiment or energy work with me, and they’re like, “Oh, my God, this is so much better than therapy,” or, “This works.” And I’m like, “But who’s to say that all that therapy chipping away for however long you did that isn’t why this is like, just like working like gangbusters for you right now?” People always wanna be like better or this or that, but it’s all building blocks, right? So to hear you say like that courage, the courage that you’ve found that you developed in yoga, the shame within that you had dismantled, allowed you to move into the erotic movement space and just be so much more available for it, right?
– Right, yeah. That’s right.
– As someone who’s been-
– Teaching in the erotic movement for a while, I mean, you get people who, so much resistance, didn’t have that background of already having released shame, developed courage. I guess I’m just, I’m curious, I would love to hear anything else you might wanna share about that courage piece. What do you notice gives people that courage? Or why people don’t have it, how they develop it, how the erotic evokes it’s in people. And I guess, sorry, I do this sometimes. Let’s back up for one second because I think we probably need to define the erotic for people who might just be thinking it’s like the over-sexualized definition of like pole dancing. It’s performative. It’s for others. How would you define the erotic?
– That’s my favorite topic. And you know what I love about this question is, ’cause I get asked that almost every time I do an interview or a podcast or I talk to about my work, and it’s always different. My answer is always slightly different depending, oops, depending on on who I’m talking to and depending on how it’s moving through my body in the moment. But currently the erotic for me is the way that our body will say yes to the things that you are moved by ’cause we can intellectually be turned on by something and not feel anything through the body. So the availability through the body, for most people, it might take… This isn’t for me because I’m Japanese. I have a hard time digesting alcohol. But for some people it might be a glass of wine. Just suddenly they can feel their body. Everything relaxes. Part of their worry mind turns off and they get a little frisky, right? So I’m just using that as an example. I’m not saying that that is the way into the erotic, but just for sake of explanation. The senses have everything to do with the erotic. So people who work with smells I find to be really interesting kinds of people. They’re very embodied. They’re very erotic people because they can talk about smell in such a deep and profound and poetic way that includes the body, that includes memories, that includes relationships, that includes, you know, feelings of the world to the path that they know so much just through talking about smell, right? So the erotic isn’t just about, like you said, a hyper-sexualized… I mean, that’s a persona. That’s not as deeply understood, this version of the erotic. It’s a persona, right? It’s helpful to turn on that part of us, say, if we want, if it helps us to tap into our power, or if it helps us tap into confidence, or it helps us to spice up our relationships, things like that, but it’s not the source when it’s a hyper-sexualized version of what people think the erotic is. The erotic is anything that allows the body to move towards relationship from a place of completeness, the wholeness, right? So it includes the grief. It includes the anger. It includes the pink and soft and fluffy side. It includes the, the ferocity of Kali you know? Like this, yeah, yeah. So today for me, the erotic is moving through me with love. There’s so much love, specifically for my community, my sisters that I share my goddess work with. And because I just spent a whole weekend with them and my teacher, just I have such a deep, deep… I’m in La La Land with goddess right now. So that happens when you come out of a retreat. And so I’m turned on completely. My field of vision is very erotic right now. Yeah, I can sit here and just like oogle, and just be like, “Elizabeth, you look gorgeous, your eyes, your tan.”
– I love this.
– Your space looks so beautiful, and it’s a pleasure for me to witness beauty, to feel beauty, and then let it sort of overflow back into the space, into my relationships. So that’s how the erotic is connecting.
– I love this. Whenever I teach classes, one of the things I always say to just give people a little intro is like, the erotic, it’s like this affectionate love with all of you, with all your parts, where you could bring every single part and have it be integrated, accepted, felt. It could be hard. It could be awful. It could be blissful. And everything is more than okay in that erotic space, which is, oh, we’re trying to put words on a thing that’s a felt experience, which is hard, but hopefully you all can feel. And this thing that you were saying about the beauty, so moving to Miami for me, I have felt more like, I have felt like the goddess is here for me in ways more so than anywhere I’ve been because of the lushness, the humidity, the green, the water, like, that the water is warm. And you might be shocked. My apartment does not have a bathtub. I was like, “Am I really gonna be able to deal with this?” And I’m like, “Well, there’s a hot tub. There’s a pool. The bay is out there. The ocean is like a bathtub here. I think I could do it.” And it was really the ocean that was like, whispering almost, “I will be your bathtub. Let me be your bathtub.”
– I got you.
– And I was like-
– You didn’t know that your little bathtub doesn’t compare to my big body.
– It’s like, for real, like, “Come float.”
– I love this. Just imagining you being able to expand in your bathtub and see the open sky. Ah!
– Sky. And then like the deeper sensuality. So I have like snorkel, I have a face mask and a breathing thing, and I brought it to the beach the other day. I’m like a grown-ass woman behaving like a child at the beach. The regular beach here in South Beach is not where you go snorkeling. You only see children, and I’m like, “I don’t give a fuck.” I put on my goggles, and I was just overjoyed ’cause one of my favorite things is to look up from under the water and see the sun shining through the water.
– Wow. Yeah, yes.
– This is like relevant/irrelevant to whatever the hell we’re talking about because it’s just like, there’s so much beauty everywhere all the time, and I think our modern lives get us so desensitized from it. But I like how you shared, “The erotic for me right now,” “The way it’s moving through me right now,” because depending on where we are, phases, stages, you know, if you’re a woman listening and you cycle and you bleed, like where the moon is, we might be seeing beauty or not.
– Yeah, and our field of vision changes, right? All right, especially that inner eye. And this is why working with the erotic specifically is an embodied practice. You can’t separate embodiment from eroticness. It’s just how it’s, it’s about feeling through your body. It’s about moving your emotions through your body. And I’m not talking about like a pantomime. It’s fine to, to learn that the kind of movement that unlock sequencing, as you learned in teacher training, is very important. There’s just an order of things. And the body, I believe the more consent we get from our body, the more receptive we become. So it’s a beautiful way to, going back to your original question with the courage piece, sometimes it’s hard to know why. Why do I have this body shame? Why do I get so nervous speaking in front of people? Why do I tighten up or why do I laugh at anything that has to do with sensuality or spirituality? Obviously, the more you know yourself and the more you can answer those questions, the more sort of easy or available you might be for all kinds of stuff that life throws at you. But I have plenty of students who’ve never done anything at all, no therapy, no yoga. They’re like, you know, I’m trying to teach them some stuff, and I was like, “Remember when you’re a kid and you just felt like you had to climb this tree?” She’s like, “No, Rie. I watched TV. That’s what I did every day. I went to school, and I came home, and I watched TV, and that was it.” So I was like, “Oh, okay. So you are not a person that fits that description of, like, you’ve done all this work, therefore you’re down.” She had none of that, and she was down. She just wanted to like take her clothes off and crawl around and roll around, just figure out how to tackle that pole. And so it really is, it comes down to how much you want to listen to what your body is saying. And sometimes it’s so simple. The body saying, “I’m hungry,” but the body is saying like, “I know I got that in me, and I just wanna go somewhere to express it, to move it. Move my ass, shake my breasts, fling my hair. I just wanna go somewhere where that’s allowed because it’s not allowed at my workplace, in my school, my church, in my family, but there’s something in me that’s saying, ‘I got this in me.'” And so that courage piece, part of it is, yeah, you got to work out a lot of stuff and you just, it’s that soul fire that you have. So, yeah, those of us who facilitate, we are like, we’re just like, we just turn on the sign. We’re open. Come on in. These are my hours, you know? I think the more you’re in your heart too, you draw similar energies towards you.
– Yeah, thank you for sharing that because one of the things I noticed around this is people love it, like, the music, being in there, but what they’re able to access, it surprises people. It can also be quite triggering. But because it is almost like this forbidden fruit or this just uncommon thing, like, people are surprised, you know? I mean, of course you know. And I’m surprised. What’s so funny, because I taught Wild Soul Movement for so many years, once I did your training and I started teaching erotic body classes in the EMBODIED Living Center, some of my women who I’ve come to know quite well over the years who just love erotic body so much, I’ve been surprised ’cause like, ah, wouldn’t have guessed. And so one of the things that I’ve loved from the facilitator perspective, ’cause before I really only had my own experience, is it just will bring out whatever needs to be brought out for whomever, right? It will just evoke and elicit and inspire and catalyze like healing and recognition of whatever. It really is kinda just like this ubiquitous medicine.
– Yeah. It is. It’s pretty broad reaching, isn’t it?
– Yeah, yeah. I have a question for you. And this is one of those things where I’m like, “Feel free to be like, ‘I don’t want to talk about that.'” It just popped into my mind. With you being an Asian woman, me being very ethnically ambiguous, one of the things that I experienced, I was just reading an article about this the other day that actually articulated it it in a way that let me know this was deeper for me than I had ever recognized before, is all women get objectified, but there’s this specific kind of racial fetishization and I will not probably say it right, but like exotification, if that’s a word. I’m curious for you. That, for me, has been such a big thing in my life, being overly sexualized, objectified, like, “What are you?” Like, “Exotic, ooh.” It’s one of the, like, I can’t even tell you how much time in my life I’ve spent fending off male gaze of that particular variety. And so having places in spaces to move erotically, like in privates, outside of anyone else’s gaze, not only is it so liberating ’cause it’s just nice, but it also kind of feels like a fuck you to that ’cause it’s like, “This is my…” Like, “I say.” Like, “Stop putting shit on me.” I’m curious if there’s anything in your experience that you can or want to share on that because this is one of the ways this particular type of movement practice and energy has been just so healing and just so nourishing for me, to like free me or give me a break from that.
– Yeah, oh, this is such an important piece, and I’m so glad you brought it up. Yeah, so, yes, I have experienced my whole life that I’ve been the recipient of the Asian fetish or yellow fever. Oh, my God.
– So many neat names to it. And I’ve witnessed it just throughout Hollywood constantly. Yeah, so, with being Japanese American, so my parents immigrated when I was a child, before I was born, I was born in L.A., but they didn’t speak a lot of English when I was born. So my first sort of experience of forming was in this very traditional Japanese household. And then I’d go off to public school in L.A. where it was very, I was very lucky, you know? I remember my childhood being very mixed and middle-class, and then it wasn’t really until junior high school probably that I started to notice this thing called, it’s like an Asian fetish. And it was the women actually that introduced me to that first.
– For example, non-Asian women of different ethnicity would comment on my eyes a lot. Some were jealous. Like, I had this Latina friend. She was like, “Your eyes are exactly how I want my eyes to look, so I’m gonna do it with makeup.” And so I would watch her do this beautiful eyeliner, but she would look at me, and so suddenly I was aware that my eyes were different than everybody else. And then I had other women who would just touch my hair and just be like, “Your hair is so straight.” And they would just touch my hair. “Can I brush your hair?” So it came from women first.
– This like thing of being different. And I was creeped out. I was pretty creeped out by it all because I wasn’t sure what was really happening other than, it’s like, “Is this complimentary or is this something else?”
– I wasn’t sure. Yeah, but we’re young. So really, I look back at this as like a very sort of innocent thing, no harm done. But I do remember that was the first time that I started to become aware of like, oh, Asian hair, Asian eyes. Asian skin was kind of this thing that people would sell beauty products, like a China doll.
– Stop. Oh, my God.
– If you want skin like a China doll, buy this product. So through marketing, things like that. So, yeah, it’s just like making us objects, right? To sell stuff. And this is true for women, certain kind of looking women. Like, you wanna look like this, you don’t wanna look like yourself, so buy our product. And so then, yeah, and then I started to hear comments, like, just disgusting stuff. Add the race and then put the word pussy after it, right?
– Oh, my God. Yeah.
– Right? So that’s the kinda stuff. So it was my friends, like my Black friends. “Oh, yes, I love Chinese pussy.” I’m not Chinese and fuck you. So suddenly this is my life, right? Just hearing stuff like this. I’m probably only 15 or 16 years old when I have to start dealing with this.
– Which, by the way, let’s just also discuss that at 15 or 16, like they have that much experience.
– Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, these are older guys, which made it worse, right? These are like guys at the mall or something, like in my school, yeah.
– Okay, I was like, “C’mon.”
– They’re definitely like 18 or some gross thing, like that preying on young girls. And you know what? Little gross fact, is there were a lot of people in my youth, in the Valley, looking for kids to put in porn. Yeah, so that was happening a lot in the ’80s. So that’s another thing I dealt with as well, seeing that, knowing girls who are my age disappearing.
– From school and hearing rumors about stuff like that. So this predatory, sexual, fetishizing youth and ethnicity was a very dark reality for me pretty young. I am so, so, so, so, so, so, so lucky that nothing too horrible or traumatic happened to me. I mean, it is pure luck because I was always in the wrong place at the wrong time. I was really good at finding trouble, but I just managed to, shh, slip away, or I’d get this sense that something bad’s about to happen and I would bail. And I had parents that they, they’re just trying to survive. Again, it’s they didn’t speak a lot of English. They were just trying to make it work. They didn’t really pay attention to their kids. Just wanted to pay rent and, you know, like that. So, yeah, I kinda raised myself, and the consciousness of the ’80s in the Valley was pretty scary. And to me that’s the definition of hyper-sexualized events, and none of it was erotic, do you know what I mean? So that’s like a good way to tease out the difference. Yes, yeah, because we all knew like, oh, these guys wanna pay you for sexy pictures because you’re Asian. These guys wanna pay you for a sexy video because you and your best friend look really hot together. It was disgusting and scary, and I’m so glad that I didn’t fall for any of it. I mean, I just knew it was wrong, but it was out there, and it was very easy for people to fall into that. They didn’t have anything anchoring them into their self-worth and felt that their body was worth protecting. So, yeah. So yeah, I definitely grew up with a lot of that. So I think by the time I started dating, I had pretty thick skin. So I can just block that kind of energy. I mean, I remember I was a waitress at a sushi bar, so the fetishizing stuff around… There was guys that would like draw anime versions of me.
– Stop it!
– And give it to me.
– Ignorance knows no bounds. Quick break in the show, everybody, to let you know that applications are open for my 2022 embodiment specialist training. I am so excited about this training. It is like seven or eight years in the making. It is expanded beyond what was Wild Soul Movement teacher training since 2016. And this is really for anybody who feels the pull to graduate from doing basic level self-help, personal development, and spiritual work and truly embody self-love, healing, and wholeness so they can live soulful and soul-centered lives that contribute to collective healing and liberation as well as people who are wanting to really integrate the light and the dark, who place a high value on kindness, generosity, integrity, humility, and reverence, who know that while we receive all kinds of gifts and talents and genius, we are the instruments, not the players. This is for people who wanna prioritize embodying their divine nature in order to serve the human experience as well for those who would like to incorporate embodiment work into their professional lives in some way, shape, or form, or just deepen their own practice. So if you wanna learn more about the training, which starts in February 2022, head to untameyourself.com/specialist. There are some dates by which to apply. If you need an extended payment plan, we have a couple of different extended payment plans, and it’s just gonna be an incredible, alchemical, transformative experience. It’s gonna be a small, intimate group ’cause I will also be mentoring and working with everyone one-on-one throughout the 13 months of the training. So again, really deep, really beautiful, really incredible experience if you are interested. Go to untameyourself.com/specialist, and I will be so excited to receive your application if you decide to submit one.
– It’s kind of like, “You wanna go out with me?” I’m like, “No, if you see me as this like giant-eyed anime cartoon with like just wearing underwear and like some pandas, like, no, I don’t wanna go out with you.” So I’ve had a lot of that kind of experience. But in terms of did it, it didn’t ever, there was a small window I was exhausted from it. But perhaps because of my punk rock roots, it was easy for me to just tell somebody that they’re a disgusting piece of shit, fuck off. I’m less inclined, you know? I don’t usually need to use words as much. I can just avoid. I don’t encounter too many of those situations anymore. Plus, I’m not like out at a bar or I don’t do a lot of social dancing anymore, sadly. But if I do, I’m usually not at a club or a bar. It’s more I just, I dunno, my friends and I will just start a dance party on our own, anywhere. And I’ve been married to the same person for 27 years. So it’s all of this, I’m just saying, I think helped me to feel more protected, ’cause I know it’s out there, and I know it’s gotten worse because of porn. Porn wasn’t as available and everywhere and accessible when I was young or even in my 20s when I was out in the world. Yeah, but I think it’s kind of like with wisdom and age, you’re kind of like, “That’s plenty.” You know what I mean? I’m tired of educating as well, so I’m not out there looking to prove something to anybody about these kinds of things. I feel like the younger generation, they’re doing a really great job handling this dialogue and educating people and guys about how to behave. So, yeah, I feel like I did my part and experienced it and it rarely is up in my field in terms of the sexual part. Yeah, but just representation angers me. The way that Asian women are represented in media is still very upsetting to me.
– Yeah, so thank you for sharing. I ask because also representation, right? Also a story and experience whether someone listening is Asian or not, and they can relate on a level. We always want to be validating people’s experiences here and just reminding them they’re not alone, and these things happen all over the place, in all kinds of different ways. There’s another reason I moved to Miami. I was like, “Listen, everyone’s ass and titties and bodies and all shit, like, everyone’s shit is just out.” I blend.
– I love it.
– And actually, so this is funny. Again, to go back, this is actually one of my favorite lines from “My Cousin Vinny,” when Joe Pesci walks out. I forget what he’s wearing, but he’s like, “How do I look?” She’s like, “Yeah, you blend.” I’m like, “All I ever wanted to do in my life is fuckin’ blend.” I hate, like, I’ve had huge, I had C-cup titties when I was in like sixth grade. I remember my aunt being upset in fifth grade ’cause my titties were already bigger than hers. And it’s like, “Can I just exist somewhere?”
– Right. Yeah.
– And I think that’s-
– I feel so happy for your titties and your booty.
– I went for a walk the other day. I gained quite a bit of weight during the pandemic too, so like I’ve gotten some clothes that are bigger just to be comfortable, but some things, I’m like, “Ah, whatever. My body will shift when it’s ready to shift.” So some of my shorts are like really short. Just like went for a walk the other day with my butt cheeks hanging. I’m like, “Not only do I not care but I don’t have to ’cause nobody…” It’s great. It’s like, “Finally, I could just exist!”
– Oh, my gosh.
– Without having to give-
– I have to come visit you.
– Oh, my God, come. Everybody, come. Let your ass cheeks hang out.
– You know, that’s what we used to say, remember, in class, in EMA class. It’s like, “Ugh, now we have to put our clothes back on.”
– Exactly! It’s so upsetting!
– It’s like, ugh!
– You don’t have to do that in Miami.
– You don’t have to do, just leave it. Whatever. Whatevs, it’s fine. Butt checks, straight butt. These like Brazilian bikinis, the amount of butt cheeks I see every day, it makes me so happy.
– Yeah, I rent a pole studio now to teach privates and I just basically wear like kind of a long shirt over booty shorts and just a bra ’cause one of these days here, it was like 99 degrees. And it was like a button down shirt with, kind of like this, just like one button. And I was sitting there and the owner of the studio is like, “Did you just walk in like that?” I was like, “Yeah.” And she’s like, “Oh, my God, I love you.” And I was like, “It’s hot.” Like, “We should all dress to our comfort level.” And I could not possibly put more clothes on than this. I mean, why am I even wearing this shirt? Just because it’s not Miami, you know? But if it was, I wouldn’t have had to put that shirt on.
– And that’s part of the factor, right? The heat. It’s just too hot to worry about wear more clothes.
– Right, that’s why I love hot places.
– I’m a cold weather person in my soul and my spirit, but my body really loves being bare.
– Yeah, I hate clothes. I like how you, in some of that sharing, arrived at how like overly sexualized and overly pornified things… That is not erotic. There’s literally, there’s no erotic energy there because there’s no love. There’s no appreciation. There’s no affection there. It’s like all transaction. It’s all extraction. It’s all for a purpose to take something from some person so someone else can have an experience.
– Mm-hmm, yeah, yeah. Yeah, and it’s hard because that word has just been co-opted by the porn industry, and I think I’ve talked to you before about this and how every time I had like a meeting or when I used to have a meeting about like getting help on growing my business, the first thing I would be asked, like, “How do you feel about changing the name? The word erotic is a turnoff. It’s scary to some people.” And I considered it for like 0.1 second maybe because I was like, I always think about everything that I’m attached to and letting it go. Everything has to go. And I just thought, for now, this word is why I have a business. This word is what gets me up in the morning. I am a defender of the erotic. So, no, right now I’m not going to. Someday I might. I might feel like, all right, the word is good. She’s got enough allies now.
– One of my favorite things when I was doing your training was like widening, opening up the view, the aperture, on what evokes erotic energy. And I remember us ’cause one of the things we were working on is like queuing, right? Like, how do we… Like words and language to help people sink into that, especially the sensual experience of it? And you had us really looking for whatever it is, like poems or stories or a TV or a character. So I would love, currently or forever, what are some of your favorite inspirations that just either go to… I mean, not that you can’t access it yourself, but what are some of the things, whether they were surprising or not, that like get you, like, “Oh, yes.”
– Ooh. I’m getting all warm and fuzzy thinking about it. Being naked. Being naked in a clean bed. Oh, that does it. Being naked in the ocean. The first time that that happened, I cried.
– ‘Cause I couldn’t believe… It’s just one of those things, like, “Why haven’t I been doing this every day my whole life?” Yeah, just having every part of my body… I just felt like a baby in the mother’s womb the first time, and that was really, really erotic. Music for sure is number two probably after nakedness and feeling yummy things all over my body. My go-to, I love a weird, strange voice, that really gets into my body, so like Tom Waits, Bjork. Either like that, those kinds of… People who are very individual that the sound coming through their body is not coming through in a standardized way. It’s coming out of a very living vessel. And when I feel that, yeah, that really works. Some of the kirtan brilliant masters. Bhagavan Das, his voice, so just that low, bassy voice. But it’s the devotion that comes through the voice that really just opens me up, the devotion. I’m a big fan of just real emotional singers. Activism, actually. I remember that was surprising, when I connected my activism to my eroticism because it’s what turns you on, activating, standing up for what’s right, fighting for what’s right, is a full-bodied experience for me. It’s not just facts and legislature and numbers. It’s like my body saying, “I am too alive, and I am too potent to put up with this bullshit,” and letting that come through is very, very erotic for me. Hmm. Food.
– Food is so erotic. I use your prompt all the time. “If you were a fruit, what would you be?” I love it so much.
– We had fun with that one, to me.
– Great. I remain a mango forever. It’s just the perfect fruit for me.
– Right, once you find your fruit, you’re good. Yes, oh, mangoes. They are so good.
– Even that, by the way, people listening, this is this – What just happened probably didn’t even register for you ’cause it’s so normal, but you stopped, and you were like, “Mango, so good.” This is embodiment, y’all. It’s not this like performative shit on Instagram. It’s like someone says mango, for example, and you can’t not stop in the middle of an interview to be like, “Oh, mangoes, so delicious.”
– Totally, and I’ll have to expand on that a little bit because it was a combination of you, Elizabeth, as a delicious mango and kind of like imbibing you, and like how yummy an Elizabeth, the awesome-toe version of a mango, would taste.
– And that was what made me pause and go-
– “Oh, mango.” Yes.
– But even like that, that feels like access to a complex sensuality, where those things don’t make sense, but they really do, right? To be like an Elizabeth version of a mango. Like, look at your apples. You got your Pink Ladies, you got your this, your Honeycrisp, or whatever, and you’re like, “Ooh,” like, that’s where your mind goes, to me, is just indicative of like deep practice, deep embodiment. That’s the way it weaves, you know? I love that.
– Right, yeah, always weaving it in. Mm-hmm.
– Yeah, it’s like, okay, what does the color red smell like? That short circuits your brain because the brain interferes with true eroticism, sensuality, because it wants to make sense of things that we feel, and we can’t always do that.
– Right. Right. Yeah, the ego wants to be able to defend whatever you say, explain whatever you’re saying, and the erotic experience is beyond thought, It’s beyond . So the ego is sorta just like, “Huh, what?” And the more we practice this way though, the less we feel like we have to defend and explain ourselves. I think that’s important for us right now, especially where everyone’s being attacked all the time.
– Oh, my God, and things are being demanded of people that nobody’s owed.
– Right, yeah. Yeah. Yeah, right, right.
– To prove something that we don’t need to prove either.
– No, no, yeah.
– That’s interesting. So wrapping up, is there anything I didn’t ask you that you’re like, “Oh, I wish you would have talked about this”? ‘Cause, I mean, it’s only like the most vast topic ever.
– Right , especially when we’re talking about it. I don’t know. I mean, you’re doing this work every day. Like, you’re really in the trenches with people and with women, right, mostly? Yeah, I sorta wanna ask you, I love knowing that this is just being eaten up and loved by your community, but is there something that is, that you are picking up on, that you’re feeling in your community around embodiment that is not quite, well, maybe, in you, because I certainly have so many things always swirling in me. And then it’s like, it’s not so much like, what’s next? It’s like, where is this eroticness, this pleasure? Like, where is it actually taking us other than into this, you know, embodied love that you mentioned?
– I love this because as I was asking you that, I was thinking of like three more things I could have asked you. And one of the things, there was actually something I wanted to share, and this is perfect. So coming into your space, with like the depth of space that you hold, one of my favorite things was the witnessing, was watching other women during like a free dance. And when we share, as we’re kinda getting to know each other, we know what’s going on with people, or maybe someone came into the class and they were upset or frazzled about something and then by the end, they’re just like surrendered, and they’re allowing, and they’re able to allow themselves to be moved, right? Because the erotic, it’s not even like, it’s just this love, but it’s this force that can move through someone. And it, well, kind of like saying about like the Elizabeth version of a mango, it’ll move through someone in the way that they move still, right? So like their flavor or their personality is still on it. And one of the things of watching other people move in this context especially that I enjoy deepening into so much, comparison has never really been my big thing anyway, but in this realm, when it was newer to me, in my 20s, I remember really longing to be able to move the way other people moved or wanting to have like a body shape or just noticing, “Man, that’d be so much easier if my titties were smaller.” But it shifted, and this is where I feel the shift is. And this might just be because this is something that’s been big for me since August, is, I mean, I teach a lot. I have a whole embodied self-love mini course, but my attention actually, I received an Akashic records reading, and my guidance was to go on a journey of self-reverence. So it was like, oh, what would be the bridge from love to reverence? This erotic energy is a big part of that ’cause, again, it’s like the all-encompassing, right? And that’s something that I experienced, like seeing, and like just taking in other women. And again, with no set, like, it’s not sexual, but the way people are moving could be perceived that way, right? And so shifting from any kind of comparison or inferiority or whatever to reverence.
– Yes, absolutely.
– That to me feels like such an important balm we could all use right now to counter ’cause we hear like, “We need unity. We need love. There’s so much division. There’s so much hate.” Okay, but what is something that we might be able to just short circuit from all the jargon and popular words right now? And reverence just feels like something that like, changes the energy, the mood, the speed of the molecules moving in the field, to me, right now.
– Perfect, yeah, and everything you’re saying is directly real for me. It is the way that I enter the erotic, and this is why my method is a spiritual embodied movement practice. It just is for me. And to separate spirituality from our centralness, eroticness, our self-love is the beginning of how to start bankrupting our culture, our people, our land. And when you take away the consciousness, this unified energy, right? So whether it’s, you know, I’m looking at beautiful Mary there in your space. She is about reverence, right? You have to. You have to have reverence for her to appreciate her, to connect her her. And at some point, we weren’t allowed to then have an erotic experience as we were in worship to the goddess. But before we were told not to do that or killed for it, we danced. Our reverence, our devotion, moved through us and we danced. And so we’re bringing it back, just bringing all of that back. And this is why the work that I do, I always talk about Shakti. I always talk about goddess. I always talk about whatever the unified field of consciousness is for you. I have students who grew up Christian. They are like, “Wow, yes. This kind of spiritual connection takes me to Jesus,” and then my erotic dies. It’s so separate. But not all women feel that way. There’s a lot of women who connected to Jesus and Mary like Shiva and Shakti, and their union and their love and their erotic connection feeds their body and their soul, and that works for them in this time. So whatever it is, it’s about the union, right? It’s not about male/female. It really is a non-binary.
– Then when you really take it into its essence, it’s about unifying all parts of ourself, which includes the eroticness. It includes the sexual nature of being in a human body, in your version of it. And it includes our soul and our spirit calling us back home, connecting us. Yeah, if you do take a look at really powerful or popular places that spirituality lives today, and you look into, well, what is that organization or that ideology? What are their thoughts about the body and pleasure and sexuality and eroticism? It’s usually bad. It’s usually considered a problem. So I am both interested in healing the feminine divide, the feminine/masculine divide, and the spiritual/erotic divide. So it is always on the buffet table for me when I offer any classes. I may not talk about it every time, but it’s always there. So thank you for bringing up cross-reference pieces. It’s so important.
– Love. Okay, I guess I have to let you go now. Y’all, in the intro, we said the link to the show notes page. At the moment that I’m recording this, I’m not remembering what episode number it’s gonna be, but if you caught this on social media or anywhere, YouTube, wherever, the link to the show notes page will be somewhere easily accessible. At the very least, it’s always in the link at untameyourself.com/podcast. We’ll have links to everywhere that you can find Rie. She teaches all kinds of classes online. If you’re in Los Angeles, she does privates and things like that. You won’t get to go to Shakti House, which is my favorite place. I grieve Shakti. I think about it and I cry sometimes. I bet you, I’m sure you do much more than anyone else would, but it was just such a magical little… I just feel like I didn’t get enough time. I did not get enough time.
– Me too.
– The pandemic interrupted.
– I know, so much. Well I’m working on Shakti House 2.0, so I’ll keep you posted.
– Ooh, ooh.
– You’ll have a home in L.A., a temple in L.A.
– Okay, good, good, good.
– And I’d love to offer your community like a exclusive little discount for part one of the upcoming Shakti Movement Medicine.
– Ooh, ooh, ooh.
– And I’ll give you that info.
– Okay, cool, yeah. Send it to me. We’ll make sure the link goes everywhere. Yay. Oh, my God, thank you so much. You’re the best.
– Thank you. Thank you so much for having me and bringing me into your beautiful world.
– All right, we’ll see you later.