Sensation, Presence, breath that comes and goes on its own
The foundation of the work is based in the phenomenon that sensation, presence and breath that comes and goes on its own are all three interrelated and inseparable. Developing sensory awareness affects the quality of the breath, and in turn, influences the experience of presence. It doesn't matter which of these aspects we work with, the other two will always be enhanced.
Sensing breath movement in this way awakens a direct experience of breath rather than a mental observation of it. A somatic intelligence becomes available to us, and our innate capacity for wholeness and vitality emerges.
We approach the work from the paradoxical perspective "I am a body/I am not a body" rather than the perspective "I have a body".
Work that comes from the point of view "I have a body", treats the body as an object that needs to be trained, fixed, disciplined. The body remains separate from the person, and the person becomes compartmentalized. Conflicts are treated in isolation. This leads us to a kind of "management strategy" or problem solving that does not get at the underlying issues which are the source of the conflict. Real transformation and integration into daily life is then bypassed.
When we work from the perspective "I am a body/I am not a body" we access the innate unity within the systems of the body/mind connection. I learn about myself through the body in a deeply personal way from the sense that I am a body. This quickly becomes the realization that I am in fact not my body, and I discover a spiritual freedom and connection to a vast resonant field of which I am a part.
Autonomy, Spontaneity, Intimacy
There are three components that reflect embodiment and self actualization: Autonomy, Spontaneity and Intimacy. These three components of being, responding, and connecting are present in every aspect of this work. Like breath, presence and sensation, these components are interrelated. As you strengthen one, the other two are influenced.
Autonomy: the experience of being myself in my independence. The work develops a felt experience of being in myself, and with that, I realize I am responsible for myself and my life. We develop respect for our personal privacy within the body, and we stabilize ourselves within the boundaries of the body. This gives us the courage to meet ourselves, to stand in who we are, and to cultivate a felt sense of being safe within our bodies. We sense our own breath rhythm, and realize our individuality: my rhythm is not your rhythm and I don't need to adapt if I don't want to. We can wait, and not feel that we must do something in order to justify our existence. We can allow ourselves to truly rest inside. Our sense of self is secure and not dependent on the conditions from the outside.
Spontaneity: the abiliy to respond authentically and without self-consciousness. We work to access our authentic impulses so that we can respond freely. A deeper sense of being in touch with our truth and our unique creative direction becomes actualized and expressed. We cultivate a sprit of play. The joy of authentic responsive expression creates a deep sense of enjoyment with who we are and our unique expression in the world.
Intimacy: the ability to be seen and met by another. Embodiment naturally leads to empathy and connection. This work allows us to find our way to letting down defenses and tensions that interfere with our ability to truly be seen and met.
Group Breath and Movement Classes
We work with simple movements and techniques such as stretching, tapping, pressing, vocalizing, and working with the presence of a partner. These techniques are an offer for the breath to respond, to invite breath space to develop in various parts of the body, and to find flow with the direction of breath movement. We sense the breath responding, and feel the ways in which these breath responses carry meaning. Breath reflects states of being, and opens us to a direct experience of our true nature. Some people call this the Soul, the Self, or our "basic goodness".
There are various breath spaces within the body which have a particular shape and direction of movement. We develop these breath spaces in order to bring unity and balance within the body, and also to experience the emotional, spiritual and energetic meaning from these breath spaces.
In the beginning, we work to free the breath from control, and to allow the breath to bring the body into a better tonus, which is the dynamic balance between appropriate tension and relaxation. Parts of the body that have been too tense begin to relax, and parts of the body that have been too slack develop tone.
We work with the natural postural reflexes of the body to bring us to a state where we are carried by the ground rather than collapsing to gravity, or stiffly holding ourselves up. This state of "being carried" not only invites the breath to flow more easily, but supports a state of being where we can be centered in ourselves without extra doing. We experience what it is to rest in ourselves, to find the courage to allow ourselves to simply be as we truly are. We become more visible, finding strength in our vulnerability, becoming more spontaneous and authentic in our portrayal of ourselves.
Many people become aware of insights into their deepest unmet needs and core material that lies under a general sense of anxiety, a lack of meaning in their lives, or an inability to let themselves be seen and met. Awareness, with acceptance, as the breath is allowed to move on its own, sets in motion a path of personal transformation at the rate that is appropriate to each person.
Private sessions follow the same principles of breath embodiment taught in group work, but the sessions are focused specifically on the individual person and their unique process of embodiment.
While you lie fully clothed on a low padded table, I use my hands and my presence to "listen" to your breath movement and the various other autonomous movements in the body. I engage in a "dialogue" with you and your breath movement with my touch and presence, helping you to rest in yourself, to sense, and to allow the subtle autonomous movements in the body to bring you into balance and unity. I will also invite you into a verbal dialogue as we work, which will give you an opportunity to clarify your experience in your own way.
I will attune to you with empathy and non-judgement, and give you an opportunity to be seen and supported as you encounter your own themes that emerge in the work. I will support your participation in the session, respecting your process on your terms and in your own timing.
Sessions are 70 to 80 minutes.