Kissing School - Book Review by Angela Earle


Review by Angela Earle

Printed in Spirit of the Valley, Magazine of Mountain Wellness, Aug 2005

Since any of us may die at any moment, learning to love more fully sounds like the most important, and most urgent, class to take. (page xii)

So opens Kissing School: Seven Lessons on Love, Lips, and Life Force. This is not a book about technique, the correct amount of pooch or pout, or a waxing ode to the power of love. It is about love as life and death, about love as here and now, about being fully alive in the moment, about stepping up to the plate and running with open arms into total being, bliss, and wonder. It’s about the fact that a fabulous, powerful, memorable kiss is an outgrowth of a loving, connected person-someone not afraid of their own sexual shadow. Someone willing to bring their heart into the light…

Kissing School itself is an outgrowth. It is the culmination of a body of work that author Cherie Byrd has been doing in Seattle, Washington as a psychotherapist since 1998 in the field of Energy Psychology. It is founded on the belief that a kiss, intimacy and love are spiritual in nature, involve our whole selves, not just our bodies or just our minds, and that our level of bliss is directly proportionate to our ability to be present in the moment, deeply grounded in who we truly are, and in our willingness to share that reality with other human beings.

Kissing School is not a throw away self-help-book-of-the-week. It is grounded in passion, science, spirituality and history. Byrd’s research is exhaustive and, for some of us, might be surprising. The historic culture we find ourselves in appears to diverge from most of the ancestral knowledge found in societies around the world throughout time. As our knowledge of our world grows scientifically, it seems we run faster and farther from ourselves mentally and spiritually. This will come as no surprise to many people, but its effect on our entire life and social systems is astonishing. The fact that no one teaches us how to love, or bring our heart and soul into our lives, is very telling. We are told to hide our emotion, particularly in our business affairs, and when it come time to step up to the plate and be passionate, how can we but arrive at this moment half asleep?! We shouldn’t beat ourselves up because of this for how would we know any differently? Luckily, guides can be found when we look for the, ranging from ancient Sanskrit texts to modern day philosophers, mystics and scientists.

Kissing School is divided into seven lessons, each with accompanying exercises, kissing tips, and supporting literature and insights from around the world. Though the subject matter is deep, and at times hot and heavy, Byrd manages to keep a light air around the topic, reminding us to not take ourselves too seriously, and that we are, after all, here because we want more love and joy in our life. Following the lessons is an exploration of the human condition, our own condition, and a journey of possibilities, new insights, and a marrying of the body and mind in intimacy.

This book is great preparation for the Kissing School class, preparing us for love on new and glorious levels! As this work involves our whole selves, the effects are felt way beyond the meeting of lips, weaving its wisdom, truth, and happiness into all areas of who and what we really are.

Kissing School, 7 Lessons on Love, Lips and Life Force by Cherie Byrd

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