This research indicates that the routine practice of OM demonstrates great potential as an innovative and scientifically backed meditative exercise to help practitioners attain new levels of focus, attention, oneness, and relaxation.
Long-term practitioners of OM have known of the multiple health and stress reduction benefits provided by the practice for decades.
Now, using an online survey defined by qualitative, open-ended questions that was distributed and responded to by various levels of OM practitioners across the world, researchers have revealed through their published report that the practice of OM is more analogous to meditation than sex. In fact, more than 80 percent of the study’s participants noted in their survey responses that they saw OM as very similar to actual meditation, and did not see or experience direct correlations to the experiences of sex and / or fondling.
The online survey consisted of 30 wide-ranging questions. Researchers quantified what most practitioners already reported experientially at the beginning of their OM experience, as well as during an OM session, and as they continued to expand and routinize their own OM habits and practice.
Casting a wide net of survey invitations, the researchers captured varying practice frequencies and history, ensuring their statistically significant findings were replicable and verifiable. More than 200 fully completed surveys were collected and assessed by the researchers.
The comprehensive study, titled “Is Orgasmic Meditation a Form of Sex? Practitioners of Orgasmic Meditation View the Practice as Significantly More Similar to Meditation Than to Sex or Fondling,” is published via the open access Journal F1000:
Its findings are sparking new interest in OM’s potential application as a regular or routine meditative practice that may allow meditators to rapidly reach active “theta states,” a highly coveted brain state practiced and promoted by Tibetan Buddhists.
Ongoing research is now underway to confirm current findings, and in order to more deeply understand how similar OM is to other, more widely propagated meditative practices. The research is in-progress at Thomas Jefferson University, the University of Pittsburgh, and other prestigious academic institutions.
One such study, by Dr. Andrew Newberg, a neuroscientist with Thomas Jefferson University, analyzed brain activity during an active OM session. Newberg found that brain regions associated with meditative states are activated during an in-progress OM session, and that the observed brain activity aligned with the spiritual experiences the practitioners reported at the end of the session.
“As previous studies have shown, sociocultural and historical context play a large role in what constitutes sex. In the wake of current public controversy over sex and consent, a practice whose practitioners report benefits in relationships, friendships, health, professional life, and spiritual life, and has teachings around sexuality and consent, and yet is rated as clearly distinct from sex, has clear benefits and a role in the broader conversation of health, wellness, and positive sexuality,” said Vivian Siegel, Ph.D., in the text of the published study.
Emphasizing safety and consent at each regimented step of the OM process, an OM session is a structured practice that lasts a total of 15 minutes. During the session, one partner manually stimulates the clitoris of the receiving partner. The only goal is to feel sensation, not necessarily to climax, and meditative benefits are experienced by both session partners.
The Institute of OM is a 501c3 dedicated to studying the practice of OM and further understanding its health benefits.