I received an important question:
‘When did you felt that you really had women in your life? That you actually knew you could seduce lots of women and succeed?’
When I first encountered the Ars Amorata, I did the ninety-day Essentials course, plus a week-long Casa Amorata immersion, at the same time. I went from zero to hero: I only needed two or three of the Essentials themes to turn my dating world around. Living in Brazil, I started seeing anywhere from two to five women a week, women of all shapes and forms, from all over the map, met in all sorts of circumstances. I was clumsy at times, and certainly naïve, but I was grateful to every woman who spent time with me. It was a glorious, liberating experience—honesty and showing up and women provided an invigorating experience I’d waited my whole life to feel. True, I often didn’t get to sleep until four or five in the morning, was incapable of doing any work, slowly ran down my savings, and left Brazil to do something different. I would have had to have changed something if I’d stayed in Sāo Paulo—but I never faced that challenge.
Where I went, though, was Romania, and I became part of the Ars Amorata team. Around this time, however—maybe a little drunk from my earlier breakthroughs and success—I built a mental narrative around wanting to become a ‘world-class seducer’, and harboured aspirations of emulating Zan and those around him. I mean, I had access to the experts, and I felt it was only a matter of time before I could seduce truly ‘lots of women’, as you say, and ‘succeed’. It was an interesting time. The more I tried to become ‘masterful’ in the art of seduction, the less I felt innocently grateful for the women I dated, the more my heart seemed to close, the more I’d analyse the interactions, the more cynical it all got, and soon, every woman I met was merely background, a character, within my own personal development narrative. Intimacy was less about our intimacy, and more about climbing another rung on my ladder. I think, in retrospect, you could call this addictive behaviour: it was not about the women, all about my dream, and built upon a void in my own self-esteem.
Anyway, I had some good luck. I met a few extraordinary women who challenged the shit out me, lovingly, sometimes fiercely, and, sooner or later, I genuinely fell in love. My masks and my pretenses fizzled, as they tend to when the rush of love is so full and intoxicating. And so, I found myself, in front of a truly beautiful woman, feeling in love, surrendered in love, unable to use any of finely-tuned skillsets. I was just too anxious, I guess. Reduced to a kind of innocence, a nakedness again. You might say I met my match.
While that relationship didn’t work out, it did slow me down… almost to a crawl. I began my own period of inner exploration, trying to understand the failed dynamics I’d wandered into, and even my motivations for wanting ‘success’ with women in the first place. I mean, what kind of man gives it all up, so he can become an Ars Amorata coach? It is a strange persuasion, one would say, in this world of lawyers and engineers. To question our true motivation is something I think we all must do.
Now perhaps because I was earnest, and surely because I did have a pre-existing connection ‘skillset’—but mostly because I was really trying to be honest—I still found myself in a certain abundance with women. I tried less and less to ‘seduce’, even to ‘be anyone’ around them, but… guess what? Life being life, over fifty per cent of humans are women anyway. To think you’re not already awash in the land of women is quite delusional, when you think about it. So everywhere I went, women were always there, and with it, therefore, the opportunity for a certain something. Eyes always sparkle. Women are pretty. And the less I gave all that mental effort to become someone with women, the more I could see reality for what it was, and saw just how abundance was already around me. Everywhere! Curiously, the fact that most men live in their heads, are lost in their work, or so desperately consume themselves in forms of self-improvement someone’s approval, I discovered one day that I became really good with women, not by becoming some calculating seduction megastar, but by simple process of elimination.
But let us be clear: all this time I was passionately, and devotedly, on a mission of self-understanding, encompassing a number of vibrant locations around the world. I didn’t go home to my village and ‘fall into abundance’. I was driven. (Although, I believe, I could now go to the most desolate, backward town, and still find myself connected with the rare beauty there. How? No skill about it. Just love, and pure witnessing, is what creates this ‘invisible bond’.)
One of my close friends from school got married at twenty-three. At the height of his wedding party, I made my way over to him at the bar and sheepishly began, ‘you know, I heard you were with that one girl in high-school for a while, and with the first girl you met at university, you’re now committed…’ my voice trailed off. ‘Are you wondering if I feel bad cos’ I didn’t bang enough women?’ he replied. I liked his frankness. He told me he didn’t have that aspiration. You know, sixteen years later, I keep seeing happy family photos with his wife and kids on my facebook feed. A truly normal and happy-lookin’ marriage. Mirage, the cynic would now chime in. But you’d be forgetting: fifty per cent of people are securely attached. I guess he felt abundant, and successful, right from the start. Go figure.
Curiously, and maybe contra to a suspicion in your question, there was no single moment, not when I was surrounded by white-clad women in a Bucharest party, not even while naked in a nude hot-tub of teasing girls, nor in some tantric orgy on a Mediterranean cliffside, nor even while dating a ‘Paris fashion model’, nowhere, did I ever look around and think, ‘jeez, look at these tremendous external surroundings! I guess I finally ‘made it’: I am here—abundance!’ Well, maybe I did for a moment or so. But these ‘peak material’ experiences soon expired, and I woke up the next morning again with a story, sure, but in that awkward relationship, yet again, with myself.
Come to think about it, I did have moments of revelation… moments when I made it… quiet moments… seeing two toothbrushes in my bathroom cup, chasing each other around the apartment, whispered ‘I love you’s’ that felt vulnerable, and true. Medicine when I was ill. A ride, a pick-up, from the airport.
So sure, I had periods of ‘success’. Then, when those summers were over, I’d find myself on my ass again, scratching my head. I assumed I must lack skill, or lifestyle. But I later came to realise—as cliché as this is going to sound—that abundance with women is everywhere, that I need relatively little true contact and intimacy to sate me, and that I don’t need to become anyone else to be worthy of love—love flowed into me when I relaxed and showed my true self. I guess I earned this realisation in a deep way, you know, truly earned it. You’ve probably read a lot of ‘you are what you seek’ in cheap spiritual books and, if you’re like I was during my cynical seducer days—if you’re absorbed in a narrative of becoming some perfected image of yourself—you probably think ‘kop-out’ or ‘bullshit’.
There was a really important period of time, actually, just before I met my girlfriend (we’re now together four-and-a-half years). Thailand. During winter. So sweet. I had been doing some really deep inner exploration, and felt little hunger for seduction or sex. I was, however, living in a context that was dripping with young, beautiful, and open women. I liked that! But, due to how I felt as I went through this more internal period, I didn’t have the urge to get my claws out, and try to get any of these women into bed. I did flirt and celebrate them though; and they did come close. I was always honest with my impulses. I felt develop, over the course of a few sexless-but-intimate months, a truly sweet relationship to my inner aloneness. I became a lover, it seemed, even though I was wholly alone. It was just as I started truly loving the scent of my own aloneness that my long-term partner entered in.
I guess I feel, during our whole relationship so far, complete abundance and success. I have everything I need, and if I were to have more women, or more success, I just would not have the time nor space for it. Whenever I feel I’m not getting everything I need, I ask for things. When I find myself daydreaming about the impossible, or craving a different feminine energy, I smile at the imaginative parts of me (who entertain themselves by making up such daydreams), or we run a little bit of archetype challenge!
Overall, to answer your initial question, I am sated, and truly successful. Even if she leaves me, I know I’ve worked myself (through external, but mainly by internal means) into a real inner peace on the matter. What is genuinely nice is watching how my woman and I channel our love, our great relationship energy, into the bigger things we’re creating in life. Yes, there are greater things on offer than just running around, seeking more. I can’t tell you what they are, though!
Hope this all helps.
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In Case You’re Wondering About this ‘Inner Work’
Why are men attracted to women? Well, biology. But there’s a splash, sure, of mystical rapture in there too. Attraction is also psychological: and this is the trickiest part of the puzzle. Often, a man will grow a feverish attraction to women, or to a particular woman, based on a psychological need.
If he feels a lack, say, of passion, or joy, or beauty, or acceptance, or love within himself, he might project those qualities into the world, imagining that women—or that one girl, that only one!—are sole possessors of the things he craves. Jung expressed a similar thought to this through the anima; saying that man, when disconnected from the feminine (feeling) aspects within himself, tries to get these missing pieces through another person. He then falls for the girl, not because he knows her, or that he necessarily has much to offer her, but because he erroneously believes she will integrate him. He sleeps with many girls, like he’d drink to oblivion or smoke opium, thinking that by inhaling women he’ll soothe his pain.
So, a man must understand what’s missing in him, and learn to fill, for himself, this void. Luckily, everything we need is within us—the antidote to our own venom lies within it—we just need to feel deeper aspect of our own nature.
‘Inner work’ is a huge topic. I’ve brought together a number of archetypal and embodiment practices into one course to kick off an ‘inner work’ journey. When I realised that joy, pleasure, passion, self-love, etc., are all states of consciousness that live inside my own body, I stop turning to women to complete me. I approach women, instead, with an abundance of great qualities. They seep out of my pores. I stop the addictive seeking-to-get, and become a man with something I can truly offer. Dating becomes less compulsive, less need-attached. But I am not a self-sufficient monk. It feels amazing to simply come together as humans, still young and still alive, and deeply enjoy the dance.
Sure, you can turn yourself into the world’s next greatest lover, consuming women over the course of the next decade in that mental, constructed attempt. Or, you can take the fast-track, and arrive at a delicious form of intimacy without perpetuating the karma and the separation.
I invite you to come and get started with us—my programme, Lover Outlaw Trickster Magician, is available here.
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