Human Skills: Sensing your Aliveness

Often modern science looks at medical conditions, whether physical or mental illness, as a set of symptoms to be fixed rather than going to what causes the aliveness of the body-mind to expand or contract. Looking at causes and conditions just don’t go deep enough to the roots of what it means to be a human being and what happens when there is a compromise to its vitality and health. People are seen as parts rather than wholes, disjointed rather than connected.

The body becomes a battlefield rather than a love field that needs attending. Solutions become patches that temporarily alleviate a discomfort, but underneath the initial emergency is really a call for something new that will elevate the whole system to a higher level of functioning. Often this means a shift in how one is living. When there is a break in the system, it usually means that something in the lifestyle or/and coping skills need to change. This invitation is a positive one. How many are willing to accept the call?

The body-mind system is like a circuit board of energies. It’s not very different than the circuit board of a car or your computer. When the connectivity between two points is obstructed, the points don’t light up and therefore the function of that pathway is hampered. Neurological wirings that get created from learning are pathways that work for certain situations early in life, but then get corroded and unusable, even dangerous, the older we get. How do you repair these pathways of learning? You learn new ways to add to your possibilities of living. Learning means taking risks to put yourself in an unknowing place to discover different ways of unknowing to arrive at a known. Sensing the body is the best way to do this and you can start at any age.

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Alive and hot for life?

What do you do when there is an influx of energy coming into your body-mind system? Do you open up and bring curiosity to explore and feel yourself? This may happen in a sexual excitation perhaps or a delightful meal. What do you do to tolerate pleasure? Do you saturate into this experience and bring a sense of wonder and joy inviting more of this? How do you use breath to widen yourself or inhibit yourself into fully sensing your aliveness.

What about if the energy influx brings up painful sensations such as overwhelm into your experience of life? What do you do then to experience pain? What do you do when anxiety arises for you? How do you manage the tiny tremors that ripple through your nervous system? Or even that nagging feeling of being out of sort? Does your tailbone tuck in or your hip pull back? Do you notice a pulling of your vagus nerve in your solar plexus or does your chest collapse? Or do you catch it more as a numbness or a blurring of your vision? It could feel like a fragmentation or a sense of a part of you just died.

For most people, the questions I have just asked are not obvious because of a lack of awareness directed to the experience of being a human being at this level of aliveness. Most people are not home in their bodies. I invite you to take this moment just to notice what is happening with you as you read these sentences and track your responses between pleasant and unpleasant. The best place to learn is yourself, your experience of aliveness in your body. “Dead” places are actually very rich in sensations and stories. Some questions to ask yourself, “Does this dead have a color? Is it heavy or cold?” When we start to bring this kind of curiosity then our “dead” parts come back to life to teach us about ourselves. This is the beginning of a long love story of being a human being.

 

 

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3 Responses to Human Skills: Sensing your Aliveness

  1. BiobioEn says:

    My job as a meditator was (supposedly) to exert my will over the body, with its sad, earthly weaknesses and needs, and to force it to sit still while I worked on purifying my mind. I even bought into the idea that I was an immortal soul, forever perfect and pure, and my body was a mere vessel, impure, imperfect, made of clay.

    • admin says:

      I am sorry that this was your experience. Meditation is really about relaxation. From this place, we see where we effort and go against who essentially we are.The body is not impure or imperfect. The body has its own laws and is dynamic and so alive. So much of our habits are “efforting” and a push of and to the whole system that is based on having it/us be other than what/who we are. We see that there is a division, a duality rather than one weave, one system, one field that flows effortlessly into itself.

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