The body, what abides there? What does it have to offer? To teach? And what do we, as inhabitants, have to learn? What type of relationship with this vessel do we want to cultivate?

Take a moment and see what’s happening in your body right now. Either close the eyes or keep them open; your choice. Start to attune to the periphery of your body; your edges where you and the world meet. Feel into the hands and feet, the touch of clothes or atmosphere, the felt sense of temperature, the felt sense of quality: What do you notice? Inwardly move to the legs and arms, to the buttocks and shoulders with a curious and compassionate attention inquiring on the level of sensation, whether gross or subtle. Slowly make way towards center. Feel the torso: the spine, back, abdomen and chest. The rhythm of the breathe, incoming, outgoing. The head and organs of perception. What do you sense? What becomes alive in the presence of your awareness? If it is the smallest hint of a sensation, how do you relate? What is your relationship with your body?

If sensations are chaotic, or a cause of overwhelm, you might consider returning to the hands and feet – a place that tends to be more neutral in the body and re-discover that place of calm, perhaps asking the sensations to step outside of your body vessel as your ground into the present moment as best as you can.

This is the start of a cleaning. The cleaning that comes with awareness to what is living on in the body. Taking steps little by little we begin to discover: our aches and pains, chronic and perhaps mechanical stores of tension, places gone numb with no sensation at all, the pulse of warmth and vibration, the undercurrent of an aliveness that fuels our very existence. It is all there, isn’t it? Within the sheath of skin is an array of opposites on the level of sensation, thought, word, emotion; we, as human beings, display the totality of potential in what is experienced and what is expressed.

We can close down, and for very good reasons, we do. In the name of safety we go numb. We shut the doors and throw out the keys to certain aspects of ourselves. We divide….only welcoming a range of experience that we feel okay with to visit into this body house. The rest are deemed as unfamiliar guests, or perhaps unwanted and banned from entry entirely. In the name of safety; we do this. In the name of preservation, of our own sanity. Is there another way? How do we slowly welcome and meet straight on what has been swept under the rug, living behind closed doors? How is compassion and care generated and given to our current predicament right now, in body?

We are exploring the relationship to the body/vessel/house. The various ways that it is experienced and the relationships that come from that. What is your body story? Your relationship to your body? If your body could tell you a secret, what might it be? If you could offer to your body a gift, what would you give?


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