Psychology of the Body
Structural Integration: Fast-track to Health and Spiritual Renewal The body expresses itself in the ways it moves, rotates shoulders or hips, contracts around some inner place in the abdomen or shields the heart. The body and you are one and the same. So all of your thoughts, feelings, life experiences, belief systems, education, hopes and more are stored in the flesh itself. Our organs, the softest tissue of the body, tend to hold our emotions and trauma. Heartbreak is literally felt in the heart, and anxiety is held mostly in the duodenum. The skeletal system has to do with the structure of our life, how we move, and our life's purpose. I like to work with the body because it has an innate sense of its own rightness, and it never lies. By working directly with your body, I will touch all the dimensions of you and your life will begin to improve with the very first session. Structural Integration is a process of bodywork which uses ten separate sessions (The Ten Series) to loosen the fascia of the body and restore proper physical alignment. It provides a systematic approach to unwind patterns of stress and strain that cause the bones of your skeleton to move out of alignment. This can cause slumping, feet that are turned inwards or outwards, knee problems, lower back pain, rotation in the hips, sacro-iliac joint stiffness, neck and jaw tension, and much more.
Structural Integration, often called "Rolfing", is a deep tissue bodywork that is based on significant understanding of the body's mechanics of function through the skeletar, fascial, ligamental and muscular systems. With this work, you will naturally stand more upright, move with greater ease and flexibility, and feel much more grounded in your feet and entire body. It's the fastest way I know to get your life on track, without a lot of fuss, talking, analyzing, or delay. By correcting the functioning of your body, your life improves in every way--almost without effort on your part--just a lot of pleasure and enjoyment and a new bounce in your step! With this work, you will realize that spirituality and basic human life are really all one and the same.
Psychological and Spiritual Benefits: Try this instead of Talk Therapy
The psychological benefits of this work are tremendous. Your body is meant to have beautiful upright posture and move with grace and ease. Being more upright and grounded in your body connects you with a greater sense of who you are, your purpose in life--which is also about yourself spiritually. There is a body-deep intuition or knowing about "why am I here?" and "what am I suppose to do with my life?". When the legs and pelvis gain their proper alignment, starting between sessions 4 and 5, you will also find that your heart naturally rises in your chest. Now you will find yourself more open to life, that it's easier to love and embrace others in life, and you can express your heart to others. You might find that you have more courage to face your own struggles and bring your gift of love, joy, peace, talents and self into the world. What truly amazes me about this work is how simple and effective it is. Your body is your self--every dimension of your self is crystallized in the flesh. The energy of the Sun and Stars that is somehow also each one of us, the spiritual vibrations of Love through God around which our heart forms, all of your beliefs, fears, gifts . . . all of your childhood wounds . . . it exists as part of the body. By providing for the body itself and supporting your innate and natural structure, YOU become more of your own self. You don't need to spend hours in "talk therapy" trying to figure out what went wrong in your life . . . we address what is not functioning properly in the body itself and those problems begin to fade.
General Information on the Viscera (Organs), Nervous System and Cranial Sacral System
Let me write some now about the work with the viscera and neural system (nervous system including brainstem and functions of the brain). Bodywork with the viscera relates more to emotions, trauma, childhood wounds, heartbreak, fears and psychological issues about life and love. Also, since the organs carry out the daily functions of life, if an organ is not working properly, it lessens your vitality. Fascial layers hold organs in place and help them slide between each other. However, those layers can also create adhesions that minimize functioning. Scar tissue can act the same way. Each of us breaths about 24,000 times per day, so the diaphragm is expanding and contracting that many times, which affects all the organs. If there is an impingement to an organ or a constriction in a ligamental attachment, this is affected with each breath. Over the course of months and years, it can seriously affect your health! Hence I work directly with the organs doing subtle and gentle manipulation on the organ itself to increase its natural vitality, as well as releasing any fascial adhesions that are constricting the organ and its ability to function properly.
This work is important not only for the organs and vitality. Often a problem elsewhere in the body might reflect a frozen organ or strain on the organ that is being manifested in a joint. For example, right shoulder or arm problems often have a complication with the liver. Many headaches are a result of stress and dysfunction in the stomach. A re-occuring knee problem might actually have its origination in scar tissue around an ovary or constriction around the bladder. Dr. Ida P. Rolf was known to say, "Where it is, it ain't"--meaning the place where the problem shows up and you feel pain is often NOT where the problem actually originates. The goal of this sort of healing work and physical therapy is to consider the body as a whole and delve into correcting the root of the problem, and not just working with the symptoms. The manipulations with the viscera and nervous system are far more gentle than structural work. Each system has a different vibration. For example, working with the tissue of the tentorium in the brain or neural cord during cranial sacral work is significantly gentle and mainly energetic work. Yet the effects will bring you into a very deep state of open expanded relaxation. During this type of work, deep healing, reorganization, integration of work and relaxation occurs. During these states, your body and heart open up to a deeper spiritual knowing about Love, Peace, Joy, Goodness . . .and often people gain a certain "knowing" about who they really are and what they came to do. In this way, bodywork, psychology and spirituality are not different things at all--when we connect to the body itself, we find that we also connect to the very root of our being! The organs are the soft tissue that hold the emotions and psychology of life and love. The energy of life and what happens has to go someplace. These emotions lodge themselves in our soft tissue. That tissue can also be the brain. Trauma especially has a significant effect in our lives. If something happens especially while one is younger, one does not have the maturity or sense of ego to deal with the grief, loss or pain. Those feelings and that energetic impact get stored in the organs, most likely in this case the pancreas and spleen. These emotions and energetic impulses will continue to dominate or effect one's life until they are released from the body itself. My work will help release what you may have been holding for many long years.
A Few Thoughts on Past Lives, Reincarnation and Spirituality
The same is also true of past life material. From my point of view as a therapist and longtime healer is that reincarnation of souls is a real phenomenon. Much of the past life material which is connected to one's sexuality is stored in the left kidney, and this will energetically tie into the back of the heart and the past life cord that comes out through the left neck/shoulder. This cord connects to a deeper place with God--beyond my limited understanding. I simply FEEL where it goes. Hence, the body is a carrier of lessons and of soul that goes beyond this one lifetime.
By working with the organs, very deep holding patterns are released when the ego structure can handle these elements, work with them, and move toward greater wholeness. Since the body (and hence soul) has its own innate sense of rightness, by "listening" to the tissues of your body and allowing them to open -- without forcing them -- your body will move into natural states of increased expansion in the right way for you. Past life material can be understood simply as energy stored from experiences in this lifetime but in your past, and it also includes lessons at deep spiritual soul level from previous lifetimes. In this way, working with the viscera and nervous system much can be cleared with a soft ease.
Psychology of Some Organs
Let me provide a brief compendium of the psychological holding of some of the organs here.
liver -- sense of self, having a hard time knowing oneself, dependency issues on the mother, depression, fits of anger and low energy. In Chinese medicine, the liver is considered to be the sea of emotions.
heart--fears about not being loved, lovable, heart break, abandonment, fear of judgment, hate, distress, joy and happiness. stomach and duodenum -- social stress about stature in society, appearances and self-image, ambition, seduction and jealousy, extroversion, spontaneous anger.
kidneys -- deep seated energy reserves, existential fear, fear of being abandoned, past life issues and sexuality (left side), feelings of insecurity, a need to lead, pessimism, generosity.
intestines -- need for security and protection, need to talk, great faithfulness, meticulousness, mood swings, tendency toward paranoia, great generosity.
bladder -- issues regarding control and not being able to let go, submission, inhibition, hard time making decisions, prudishness, issues regarding cleanliness, shyness, avoidance of tension.
pancreas -- social stress, unbearable grief or loss, fear of confronting one's own mortality, deep sadness, crushed or stolen childhood, unsatisfying life.
gallbladder -- constant preoccupation or worry, fear of any conflict, a great need for routine, fear of exams or daily pressures, manic depressive tendency.
lungs -- lack of self confidence, lack of inner authority, fear of confrontation or bothering people, hostility, rigidity, a need for affection and attention, withdrawal or suppressing feelings.
The brain is also an organ. It has a lot of soft tissue, and of course, many functions are carried out within the brain. However, the brain records the emotions and experiences, and if there is too much for it to handle, it shuts down. It begins to record certain patterns and send messages through the nervous system and hormonal system to adjust. If these patterns are repeated again and again, an imbalance energetically in the brain itself can become established. By working with the brain as an organ and as part of the nervous system, as well as with the cranial sacral pulse, restoration of proper peace, calm and functioning can result, also alleviating stress in the organs.
This provides you with some basic information correlating the body with our psychology and spirituality. My work goes well beyond the current medical model of understanding. I relate the body, the story and the energy field together to begin to work more deeply with who you are and what wishes to unfold, unwind and move into greater coherency.