The Hobart

The Wall of Vaginas

by Annia Baron
The Wall of Vaginas

Plutarch, the ancient Greek Scholar, tells the story of a battle between the Persians and Medes.

The Persian men were losing. Feeling hopeless, they retreated. Upon hearing this, the women of the village gathered to form a wall so that when the men came back, the way forward was blocked. In one collective swoop, the women raised their dresses to reveal their vaginas. The men, in awe of this astonishing spectacle were filled with vigour and returned to face their enemies. They won.

Your vagina is the most beautiful, inimitable, and powerful sexual organ. But it’s also seriously misunderstood. For centuries the role of the vagina has gone through a succession of inaccurate, subjective constructs full of misinformation. The vagina has been held sacred by the Chinese Tao and Indian Tantric philosophies, deduced to mere flesh by the Elizabethans, and associated with hysteria by Freud. The vagina has been adored, feared, shamed, and reconstructed over and over, leaving us with an incoherent and disharmonious relationship to this life-giving organ, and in turn our psychological health and wellbeing. But to comprehend the vagina and harness its transformational power, we need to understand the role of the pelvic nerve, the autonomic nervous system, and the importance of connecting to the living, delicate threads that make up this network.

To begin, science has proved that the vagina and brain cannot be considered separate (Basson, 2005; Komisaruk et al 2004). The ocean of intricate neural pathways between the sex organs, spine, and brain extends throughout the entire pelvis. This dense set of pathways are consistently lighting up with electrical impulses, integrating and relaying information all the time. Among one of the many wondrous things about your pelvic nerve system is that like your fingerprint, it’s completely unique for every woman on earth – no two are alike. This means that for some women, neural pathways may be dense in certain areas or closer to the surface of the body, making it easier to reach sexual pleasure and for other women, the innervation may be sparse or lay more submerged below the surface, requiring additional time and attention. The point is, although culture and upbringing have an influence on how you relate to your vagina, a lot of it may have to do with your physical wiring. And just as Norman Doidge, the author of The Brain That Changes Itself proved we have the power to physically change the neuroplasticity of our brain, so too can we recalibrate the way we think, feel about, and experience our vagina.

But where do we start? This is where the autonomic nervous system (ANS) comes in. The ANS prepares the way for these neural impulses that travel between the vagina and the brain. It regulates how we respond to relaxation and stimulation, but it’s responsible for things we can’t consciously control, like blushing, flushing of skin, and perspiration etc. So how do we change something we’re not consciously able to operate? We know the ANS ‘listens’ to the mind. This means the subconscious narratives we have about our vagina, particularly negative self-talk (e.g., I don’t like it, I wish it looked different etc) will determine the state of the ANS-brain-vagina cycle and allow or inhibit connection to the wisdom and strength residing there.

How do we reconnect? Easy. Talk to your vagina. Yes, speak to her regularly. No matter what you’ve experienced in your life, appreciate everything your vagina has gifted you – adventures, sensations, orgasmic treasures, opportunities to learn about yourself, birthing magnificent children – and all that it’s been able to absorb, hold, transform, and release. Practice reconnecting to the vagina and the pelvic nerve through physical exercise, especially core work that strengthens the muscles of these systems. Learn how to engage your transverse abdominus muscles and engage muscular tissue in and around your vagina and perineum. The more aware you are of the subtleties, the more you can isolate or combine muscle activation and learn to influence your sensual experiences. If you’ve been avoiding or misunderstanding the connection you have with your vagina, it isn’t your fault. You’re not responsible for a lot of the subconscious priming that has negatively influenced our relationship with it. But it’s never too late to reclaim your freedom. If it helps, seek out a trusted holistic worker or health practitioner who can support you on your journey. But above all, remind yourself that no matter what society has made you feel about your vagina, like the women who raised their dresses to shape the course of history, don’t underestimate the ability you have to strengthen your life-revitalising lady parts, to recalibrate your gorgeous brain-vagina connection, and create the healthy and happy life you desire and deserve. When you reconnect with your vagina, you touch the truth. You ignite your heart and begin living more from a place of courage, kindness, and compassion.

My incredible women (and all who care about their wellbeing) let’s celebrate, honour and love our vaginas. By doing so, we pave the way for a new era of relating to this remarkable part of who we are and how we bring our best selves out into the world.

Annia Baron is a Clinical Psychologist & Mindset Coach. Want to learn more about mindset tools to create a life you desire and deserve? Get in touch on Instagram @anniabaron or visit www.remindyourself.com

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May 2024

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