Essence of Embodiment

for women, femmes and non-binary people of color who want to deepen their embodiment, practice somatic trauma resolution and grow into consensual culture conduits for personal and collective transformation. 

It was the summer of 2019 and everything had changed for me. For most of my life, I had unknowingly built my sense of worthiness upon my achievements and capacity to give and appease, a valid trauma response to the oppressive systems of capitalism and patriarchy. When I realized my most recent offering at the time, Vessel Rising, was created from fear and scarcity, everything fell apart. I had no income as an undocumented immigrant, I lost any form of self-trust and confidence, and I knew I had to start over.

Thankfully, I met my somatic trauma resolution teacher, Rachael Maddox not long after. As I began to grow a relationship with my embodied inner experience, I started to understand how capitalism had formed my identity, self-worth and capacity to receive what I needed. Trust was, I didn’t even know how to sense for what I needed. I also started to see how this didn’t start with me. This is a collective trauma spell that has been imprinted upon me, my lineage and culture, and was showing up in all forms of my relationships- to my business, commmunity and beyond.

When George Floyd was murdered last summer, I began to see more clearly how systems of colonization, capitalism, ableism and patriarchy worked together to oppress bodies of marginalized identities. Through my grief and rage, capacity to heal from within, the pieces came together and I began to see how this was the unnamed source of so much of my complex developmental trauma.

This is when consensual culture was born.

And while this body of work will be in constant evolution and shape-shifting, I know that it begins with the body. 

To be embodied is to re-humanize ourselves in a culture that demands otherwise for the benefit of those in power over.
To be embodied is to liberate ourselves from the collective trauma spell that’s been embedded in our soma, soul and psyche.
To be embodied is to awaken our soul’s essence-nature and divine potential for regenerative love and amplify our intrinsic capacity to heal.
To be embodied is to practice our emergent co-creative capacity for right-relationship to and with all beings, our earth included.

It is a privilege that is afforded to us with enough safety, resources, stability and community support. It is one that I don’t take lightly, and therefore, will be offering everything I know about somatic trauma resolution with regard to my own lived experience and integrity. 

I am Denise (she/they). I am queer and non-binary. I am Malaysian Chinese, immigrant of Taoist ancestry who lives, loves and works on stolen Kumeyaay land. I was undocumented for 3 years. I am a childhood and young adult sexual trauma survivor, and recovering codependent. I am a somatic trauma resolution practitioner and educator, relational alchemist and culture conduit.

I am a living, breathing, co-evolving vessel of consensual culture, and I’d love to co-create our collective liberation with you.

How we do this

Circle 1: Essence of Embodiment

Essence of Embodiment is the first circle of three within a larger offering called rootspace. This 12-week group experience exists as a space for us to grow our relationship with our embodied, inner experience as a radical act of resisting internalized systems of oppression and co-creating an emergent, liberatory, decolonial way of being. 

We will practice amplifying our intrinsic capacity to heal, and awakening the embodiment of our soul’s essence-nature through the body; our vessel. In a system that dehumanizes us by disconnecting us from our physical and subtle bodies, it is our sacred responsibility to come home to the innate wisdom and regenerative, erotic, creative, loving capacity of our humanity; one that is in right-relationship with all living beings. 

When we can access interdependence; the understanding that we are beings dependent on one another for connection and belonging, sovereignty; choice, self-consent and the capacity to respond from care, and integrity; the willingness to align with the choices and truth of our wholeness, we might begin developing an ecology of relational intimacy, trauma resolution and collective liberation. 

In order to do so, and by having the privilege to be embodied, we might come face to face with our trauma, because trauma lives in our bodies. Through understanding felt-senses, impulses, narratives, projections and trauma responses, we can grow our somatic capacity to be with the pain and discomfort of breaking cycles of oppression and rewriting new ways of being within our nervous system. The beauty of it all? The path of healing is guided by the amplification of our intrinsic capacity to heal and our soul’s blueprint essence. 

We’re also here to expand our understanding of trauma and trauma-informed spaces to include the collective trauma spell of the white supremacist colonial capitalist ableist patriarchy. More importantly, we’ll co-create the conditions and praxis for an emergent interdependent, inter-sovereign, integrous, compassionate way of being; consensual culture

This circle will be facilitated over three months, including a 2-day opening weekend, 6 interactive lessons, 6 somatic practice sessions, 3 community sessions, 2 guest speakers and peer-led triads.

Program Cost: $2,250

Payment plans available of either:

  • $500/month with $750 deposit 
  • $750/month 
  • $375/two weeks

When you apply, you will first be asked to schedule a feeler call with Denise. This is, after all, a relational healing body of work 🙂 

This space welcomes and centers the lived experience of Black, Brown, Indigenous and People of Color who may also identify as queer, trans, nonbinary, and/or femme. There will be no more than 10 participants. Scholarships are available on a first come first serve basis. Captioning will be available during live sessions and recordings. We are currently not accepting applications from white or white-passing folks.

Opening Weekend: June 25th & 26th, 1-4pm PST

  • Welcome and Orientation
  • What we are here to do and how we do it
  • consensual culture theory of change
  • Belonging as our blueprint
  • Intro to somatic trauma resolution

Interactive Experiences

In-depth lessons, collective care, storytelling medicine and somatic practice.

Fridays, 1-4pm PST

Session 1: July 9th

Soul Embodiment

  • Your soul’s essence-nature
  • The blueprint of health
  • SoulSeed archetype review
  • Inherent treatment plan

Session 2: July 23rd

Subtle Bodies & Relational Field

  • Energy body, emotional body, spiritual body
  • consensual culture: co-creation
  • Life force energy and qi
  • Energetic sovereignty

Session 3: August 6th

Neediness, Receptivity, Provider, Protector

  • consensual culture: interdependence
  • consensual culture: inter-sovereignty
  • Gatekeeper archetype
  • Limbic resonance

Session 4: August 20th

The Science of Trauma

  • Nervous system dynamics
  • Window of Tolerance & Polyvagal Theory
  • How trauma happens and resolves
  • Trauma responses

Session 5: Sept 3rd

Breaking the Cycle

  • Creating new results
  • Incremental change and iterative growth
  • Choice points
  • Developmental path of healing

Session 6: Sept 17th

Closing Ceremony

  • Review of lessons
  • Storytelling
  • Celebrations
  • Togetherness!

Somatic Practice Sessions

A space to be in the practice of relating to your embodied inner experience, the collective relational field and the possibilities of choice, healing and being witnessed.

  • Resourcing & Rootspace
  • Orienting & Grounding
  • Softening & Receptivity
  • Energetic Sovereignty
  • Centering& Integrity
  • Pendulation & Titration

Wednesdays, 4-5pm PST
June 30, July 14 & 28, August 11 & 25, Sept 8

Community Circles

Three community circles facilitated by Celine Jusuf.

#1: Return to Essence Nature 
July 11th/12th 

#2: Interdependence & Intersovereignty
August 15th/16th

#3: Caring for Our Bodies: Choice Points & Trauma
Sept 12th/13th

Guest Speakers

Two guest speakers on somatic practices healing. Details and dates to be released soon.

Somatic trauma resolution and nervous system care

Personal, relational and spiritual embodiment

Co-creating culture in community and practice

This is for those who:

  • Are Black, Brown, Indigenous and People of Color who may also identify as queer, trans, nonbinary, and/or femme.
  • Knows that embodiment and somatics is an integral part to creating sustained transformation and healing.
  • Might have an existing embodiment and / or spiritual practice and have been recently politicized.
  • Might identify with a leadership role- facilitator, activist, coach, teacher, therapist, healer… whatever you do to create change.  
  • Wants an immersion into somatic trauma resolution- through practice and embodiment led and supported by femmes of color.
  • Want to understand how trauma is keeping them in the same cycles of internalized oppression- and how to re-pattern towards choice and self-consent.
  • Want to actively be in relationship with their intrinsic capacity to heal and inner wellspring of health and wisdom.
  • Are committed to the discomfort of cultural change and want to grow their capacity for difficulty.
  • Want to learn how to resolve their imprinted trauma responses at the nervous system level.
  • Want to deepen their relational skills because they understand how our culture plays a part in upholding systems of oppression.
  • Are ready to practice consensual culture as a new way of being and relating to themselves and others and others.
  • Might want to enroll in Feeling Belonging & Culture Cauldron, parts 2 & 3 of our foundations program.
  • Might want to learn how to facilitate a trauma-sensitive, body-based community offering in future.

Our foundations program is facilitated in three parts, or circles, as we call them. While all three relate to one another, it’s highly recommended that you begin with Circle 1 for a baseline understanding of somatic trauma resolution and consensual culture embodiment.

Circle 1: Essence of Embodiment
*NOW ENROLLING* June 25 – September 17th, 2021

Circle 2: Feeling Belonging
Fall-Winter 2021

Circle 3: Culture Cauldron
Winter-Spring 2022


consensual culture is a culmination of wisdom, practice and embodiment of many teachers and lineages including emergent strategy by adrienne maree brown, ReBloom by Rachael Maddox, Taoism, and somatic abolition by Resmaa Menakem.

As a relational healing framework, this body of work comes alive in all forms of relationship; to Self, to nature, to one another, to our collective. Appreciation for Stephanie Kang, Tiffany Wong, Cassandra Lam and the many more humans who, in relationship with Denise, has supported the birth and practice of consensual culture

As the vessel and creator of consensual culture, Denise is in ongoing practice of this body of work and will likely be for her lifetime. Their embodiment and practice of our core values and praxis is a way of being and relating that is in real-time, through the creation of this program, body of work, and in all her relationships.

Currently, Denise is exploring what it means to exist beyond the binaries of gender and sexuality through musing upon and being in relationship with her own erotic essence-nature. She’s also a pittie mama, roller-skater and lover of Black femme musical artistry. She couldn’t have done this with without Naïma, a timeless ficus tree in Mission Bay Park.

“Denise has helped me put language to experiences that have spent so long swirling around inside of me. I have many words and embodied moments to describe how Denise’s radiant spirit and skills with intuitive work have renewed and empowered me. As a result, I can’t wait to continue letting myself be curious, playful, and grateful!”

Elley B.

“Denise has honestly been an amazing mentor. She has so much wisdom and knowledge. She teaches in such a gentle and non-judgmental way. You never feel like she is above you. She makes you feel like an equal and makes sure to let you know you have the answers inside you and you are capable of self-healing. She is an amazing guide to help with working through that self-healing journey. Through working with Denise, she has helped me get to the root of my anxieties to start healing. For the first time in my life, I have seen a decrease in my anxiety and I finally have hope that I can manage it. I’ve been able to have more confidence and finally feel like I’m worthy. Before working with Denise, I was always subconsciously trying to numb my feelings. Now, I have confidence to face my feelings and work through them rather than hiding from them. I also have more awareness to my unhealthy patterns and the tools to work to change them.”

Raylene R.

“Y’all. She is the real deal when it comes to deep healing work. While healing has been a long and arduous journey for me, what I learn from Denise has always felt like the forefront of my progress. I love to support her because she shows up again and again walking her talk. She embodies and exemplifies what she teaches, AND doesn’t act like a superhuman or holier than thou. She embraces her humanity by humbly and vulnerably sharing about it with others.”

Jenn B.

“Denise has been my client for the last year, and all I have to say is – she is walking her talk. Radically embodied. Full of heart, wisdom and knowing. And would be a phenomenal somatic guide to anyone on a journey around self-worth, owning and honoring needs in relationships, sensing and honoring healthier boundaries, expressing your truth in tender ways, or making your ancestors proud. She’s a gifted soul and a sage guide and I highly recommend working with her!”

Rachael Maddox

“Denise created a brave and consensual space for me to explore my trauma and healing through the wisdom of my own body. As someone who has felt out of place and unsafe my entire life existing as a WOC, Denise gave me the tools to cultivate safety and belonging in both my external and inner realities so that I can better move with intention and integrity in all aspects of my life. She embodies a leader full of strength, honesty, and compassion through their programming and facilitation.”

Kristen N.

Supporting Offerings

photo of Denise writing in a journal

Learn more at our introductory workshop.

Share your email below to receive the recording of our introductory workshop. We cover the basics of consensual culture, with moments for your self-reflection.

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This is a free recording, and we are accepting donations via our fundraiser here.

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