Safety & Consent
Oregon Tantra Festival creates environments that encourage people to come together, expand and grow, and experience bliss. In order to expand and grow, people need to get out of their comfort zone and take risks. We believe, if we are inviting our participants to take risks we must prioritize creating a safer space for everyone.
We do this through our three pillars of safer space: Presence, Choice, and Support.
Presence means that people are aware of their actions and the impact they have on others. This is why we encourage people to refrain from using any mind-altering substances.
We also encourage people to continuously reflect on their actions, thus creating more awareness and intentionality. When all people are really present, it allows people to explore their edge in a safe and constructive way.
Choice is the basis of consensual interactions. We believe that expanding your comfort zone and taking risks should be your choice and we provide reminders and education throughout our events.
Support is provided through our Support team on-site at every major event. Support are peer counselors ready to offer a listening ear, a nurturing hug, or intervene if necessary.
SEE SOMETHING THAT NEEDS ATTENTION?
If you see or experience behavior that is inappropriate or out of line at our events, please tell the Staff. We like to catch consent breaks early and often so we can prevent further issues.
Suggestions for Loving Relating
GET CURIOUS & CLEAR
Asking for a hug BEFORE hugging is awesome. Saying “I like you and I’d like to get to know you” is hot.
Asking “What are you up for?” is even hotter.
Finding out what level of play the person is up for BEFORE engaging is awesome.
LISTEN FOR THE “OH YES”!
Yes means yes, everything else means no or time to clarify.
Not doing anything until you hear, see, and feel a “YES!” is how we do it at SoulPlay.
THE ONLY CONSTANT IS CHANGE
Just because someone says yes once doesn’t mean they’ll say it again. Changing one’s mind in the middle is totally valid. Saying “Thank you for taking care of yourself” when they say “no” will blow them away.
Want to avoid regrets? Listen for the “no”, the “maybe”, the “I’m not sure inside yourself and with your partner. Some people have a hard time reading body language, use your words. If you want to stop, saying “stop” is often a good way… that’s a good time to stop and check-in.
OOOPS…I OVERSTEPPED A BOUNDARY
Sometimes it happens. Much of the time it’s by mistake. Whether it’s doing something to someone or having our boundaries crossed it never feels good. Following-up and clearing the air is the best.
THE POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS
Just because one thing can’t happen doesn’t mean something else is out. Hitting a bump is a call for creativity. “I’m not up for that, but I’d be into…” is skillful negotiating.
HONESTY IS THE BEST POLICY
Being truthful about your relationship status, your availability, and your sexual habits are the foundation of being a SoulPlay rockstar.
CHECK-IN AT THE END
Having a clear closing is key to keeping your loves feeling cared for and respected. Honor them to the end and thank them for sharing themselves with you.
Inclusivity, Thinking Beyond the Box
Oregon Tantra Festival culture welcomes many perspectives and views on gender, sexual orientation and sexual preferences. We encourage you to become familiar with these topics to encourage sensitivity to those who are not choosing traditionally normative ways of expressing themselves, but are unfolding into creative self expression and self definitions.
Here are some resources we recommend you check out!
Breaking Through the Binary, by Sam Killermann, which includes a great graphic of The Genderbread Person-
“Gender is a tough subject to tackle. There are many facets to consider and many pressures at play, and we have all been conditioned in such a way that our first instinct is almost unanimously wrong. But we’re going to tackle it.”
The New Paradigm of Sex and Relating
“Imagine living in a world where sex is an exciting frontier to explore instead of something painful or scary. Imagine embodying your desires and having the tools to express them gracefully and respectfully. Imagine a world where your sexuality is a path to heal old wounds, to honor ourselves and our partners, and to directly experience the sacredness of our lives.
If this isn’t your reality yet, then read on because this new vision of sexuality is closer than you think.”