Thursday, April 2, 2020

Embodied Listening - Going Deeper (Part II)


In Part I of Embodied Listening, I wrote about how what has been fragmented or undigested within us can be welcomed back into wholeness.  Sometimes we call this unprocessed, stored experience “trauma.”  People sometimes think that trauma should be gotten rid of, but fragmenting energy which wasn’t successfully processed was and is not bad.  It’s an intelligent, protective movement in order to maintain functioning.  Trauma is in itself a function, not a dysfunction. 

Similar nervous system responses occur during the developmental process, when children aren’t responded to in ways which wire the nervous system for healthy attachment and individuation. In these cases, parts of the nervous system remain undeveloped, until an intervention occurs.

Regardless of the cause, most of have in our bodies (or as Thomas says, our biocomputer) either frozen / shadow areas, or areas where development was initially skipped over.   

Understanding the function of the trauma shut-down response in the nervous system helps us understand at a micro level what we all have experienced in our lives to a greater or lesser degree: repeating the past.   When energy has been fragmented and a part of our nervous system is shut down, the past equals the future because we haven’t been able to access, presence, and metabolize the energy which is closed off from our experiential, embodied awareness.  The trauma is untouchable or invisible to us, except through the symptoms it creates.   One of the symptoms is repeating unpleasant experiences in our lives which we wouldn’t consciously choose to re-create.



The flow of conscious, embodied presence -- which I’m calling embodied listening – supports inner and outer flow, which allows more of our nervous systems to be accessible.  As more of our nervous systems are accessible, we experience a felt sense of grounded wholeness, and a greater capacity for feeling, connection, and ability to process material that formerly was so difficult as to be inaccessible, either through overwhelm or numbness.  Embodied listening as a path of reclaiming wholeness supports the healing of our nervous systems which facilitates us to move into frontiers, ‘standing on’ what we’ve learned and integrated from our past experiences.    A new future becomes possible. 

In Part III, I’ll write about our collective nervous system, and how embodied listening in groups can help heal and free of us from the collective traumas of our joint past.


with love,
Rhonda

P.S.  Lifting, lifting is an example of a much-utilized coping response to discomfort and stored trauma within the body and nervous system. 

Embodied Listening - Context (Part I)


I’ve been intensively studying with Thomas Huebl, a modern mystic and spiritual teacher, through his online interactive community programs for the last few years.  Learning with Thomas and his community has deepened my meditation practice which began 17 years ago and refined my understanding of subtle anatomy and energetics, contributing both to my inner healing and the way I work with individuals and groups.  Actually, what I’ve learned has impacted every aspect of my life. 
One thing which excites and calls me to action is embodied listening, which sounds simple.  However, listening has many layers.  Listening is impacted by our intention, and dependent on our nervous systems, which we are listening with and through. 



Did you know that when human beings have an experience that cannot be dealt with, the nervous system is wise enough come up with a solution?  Isn’t that amazing?  The nervous system knows how to compartmentalize and shut down a part of itself and store an experience until resources become available to process it through.  This trauma response within our bodies is sometimes looked at as something we’d like to let go of or get rid of, but it’s an intelligent, protective movement to maintain functioning.  To me, the trauma response is an embodiment of love in action, in the form of protection.  And I see embodied listening as love in action too.

The flow of conscious, embodied presence -- which I’m calling embodied listening – provides a healing resonance through which our nervous systems can return to wholeness.  We experience deeper relaxation and grounding which supports spaciousness for integration and continued evolution to occur.  Through embodied listening, what has been fragmented or undigested can be welcomed back into wholeness and the movement of life. 

I believe the world needs us to listen.  To ourselves.  To others.  To the spaces between us.  To our hearts.  To our pasts.  To our planet.  To all creatures.  To our systems.  To our pain.  To our possibilities.  To our future, and the future of our children’s children. 

I intend to write more about embodied listening, what that means to me, what I think the implications are, and creative ways I feel called to share and explore with others who are interested. 

Warm blessings,
Rhonda

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Today's meditation journey to stillness, and beyond.

Do you know that experience of feeling crowded on the inside?  Too much stuff going on.... inside, around you....  And, at the same time a strong urge to keep going, keep moving, do this, do that, do more. 

Today my choice is to stop.

Sit here.

Connect. 

Breathe. 

Notice my breath, and the feeling of my body sitting on the couch, one foot curled under, and one hanging down toward the floor.  Learning back.  The sun is shining through the windows, My houseplants seem to be drinking it in, and the shrub outside is moving gently in the breeze.  The heater just kicked on.  An airplane is flying by.  Two cars just drove down the street alongside my home.

Breathe

I admire the pretty colors of the room around me. 

Breathe

Settle.  With a hand over my heart, I feel my heartbeat.  My exhalation is lengthening.  My jaw just relaxed a bit and my shoulders just dropped down and back. 

Turning toward inner movements, I can feel my body sensations.  My emotions seem to be slowing down and spreading out, a gentle tingling, flowing movement throughout my inner body.  Thoughts seem to be relaxing down and in like my body resting in a hammock. 

mmmmmmmmmmmm
And now what?

Still feeling my inner body, and also seeing the room around me.  Eyes sometimes closing, sometimes opening.  Breathing.

I'm becoming aware of spaciousness around and through me. 

And something else. 

A tinge of heaviness in and through the space.  I'm tired.  It's like looking through a heavy blanket.  Clear, but heavy. 

mmmmmmmmmmmmm
Welcome, welcome.

I notice spaciousness again.  The heavy inner blanket thing is dissolving.
mmmmmmmmmm

I feel a light something, which I'll call clarity, and has a kind of a sparkle to it. 
Welcome, welcome. 

Ahhhh, stillness. 

A sense of an anchor, a magnetic sensation, connecting the base of my body down toward the center of the earth.  Simultaneously, an opening, tingly funnel sensation upward, above the crown of my head. 

mmmmmmmmm
I'll rest here a while.

Now a dullness, emerging around and through my lower body.  hmmmmmm
Welcome, welcome.

Eventual dissolution and awareness of that central magnetic channel.

Turning toward vastness, opening into the infinite.
hmmmmmmm, What is calling me?  What wants my attention?

Fire.  I had an image of fire, and the thought of the fires in Australia.
Now grief, a heavy heart.
Welcome, welcome.  I will host this experience too, as best I can, as I do whatever comes into my awareness when I'm meditating...
My jaw is tightening.
Breathing.

I feel angry.
Welcome, welcome.

I'm noticing that central channel, a a sense of spaciousness.

Now, to close, time for gratitude.
Thank you breath.
Thank you body.
Thank you emotions.
Thank you mind. 
Thank you essence.
Thank you spirit.
Thank you awareness.
Thank you understanding.
Thank you compassion.
Thank you what I don't understand.
Thank you mystery.
Thank you now.
Thank you past.
Thank you future.
Thank you life.
Thank you beauty.
Thank you joy.
Thank you reader.

I appreciate you sharing my meditation with me today.

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Writing to Bridge the Gap: Little Soldier

Marching through the world

Pushing on
Moving on
Marching on
Carrying on

Like a little soldier

-- too young to be a soldier --

but a soldier none-the-less

who does what must be done.

Friday, January 3, 2020

Openness to Learning

In my work with people, I appreciate openness to learning:  the courage to open, to include what one is feeling, wanting, needing, mourning, longing for, and so on.  Openness to learning requires cultivating a friendly relationship with self and with how things are right now. 

When we bring awareness deeply to our healing, growth, and evolution, we find the principle in action:  Life wants to live.  Whatever we’re doing, we’re doing for a reason, conscious or unconscious.  We find that all our inner activities, conscious and unconscious, are movements toward enhancing, protecting and preserving life.  Even the inner movements we might label as destructive or deadening, such as defensiveness, criticism, or avoidance, are at some level our best (conscious or unconscious attempt) to live or at least to be ok.  When we can meet our inner movements and tendencies and patterns with a level of curiosity to discover, "what function is this serving?" we will discover an interesting answer.  Perhaps avoidance is a "play dead" tendency we developed much earlier in our lives when we weren't capable of addressing a difficult situation.  Perhaps criticism or defensiveness created enough emotional distance to protect our hearts from hurting, etc.  By befriending what is happening, we can discover the function it (we) are fulfilling, and in doing so, we can open to new ways to meet our needs. What once was helpful may no longer be so, and in fact may be causing us (and others) to suffer now. Through courageous openness to learning, we mature and outgrow old ways of coping, through connecting with them.  Within connection that is curious and open, new insights emerge. 


Openness to learning is a life-changing and courageous quality!



Thursday, January 2, 2020

Life Dances Through Us - How can we participate with that movement?

Life is a dance.

It might be more accurate to say life dances.  Dance isn't something we do.  Dance is something we are.

When we dance, we connect with a field of movement.  We don't just move, we can connect with the fundamental way life moves, births, blooms, changes, dies, transforms, pauses, pulses, creates, discovers, and blooms again.

We aren't the first to dance, and we won't be the last.  Even if humanity extinguishes itself, life will still be dancing on this planet.

A favorite contemplative wondering is:  How can I join the dance of my own body, my own heart, my own calling, my own life?

When we align with life in that way, we can co-create tectonic shifts in our lives and world.