Another Approach to Healing

Another Approach to Healing

Portrait of an Elephant by Rennett Stowe
Portrait of an Elephant by Rennett Stowe

In my case, as I describe on An Approach to Healing, I learned an effortless meditation first. Then I learned how to support that in processing the bigger contractions.

This approach allows one to settle into source and neutrally observe. When contractions surface, we can allow them to arise and complete. Healing is accomplished. I recommend energy healers who use a similar approach as they can get under our contractions at the roots.

However, this process requires a degree of established presence. Otherwise, how do we settle into source? Further, there are some contractions that are harder to access this way. For example, we may see physical symptoms without an explanation.

The flip side is to approach our contractions from the physical. By noticing contractions in the body as sensations, we can follow them back into the energy or emotional contraction. Once we see the energetic contraction, we can remember it and return to it until we are ready to release it.

In my meditation practice, body awareness is used to process the bigger unresolved stresses. Our attention can help them resolve. But it’s not an approach I’ve used much. However, I tapped into unrecognized trauma when I recently tried it. Now I’m learning how to process that from this new angle.

[Some of you may be amused I’ve not used such an approach much as this is how you learned. It is more common to explore sensations for those who practice things like body awareness or mindful presence in activity. In an effortless meditation, however, we just allow sensations.]

In the class I took, they organized emotions under 5 primary groups: Anger, Sadness, Fear, Joy, and Sexual. Under each were 18 emotions organized in 6 lines of low, medium, and high.

Emotions are hard to categorize as they’re fluid in nature, flowing and blending. I refer to the the water-based flows as emotions and those like love and compassion as fine feelings. Yet anger has elements of fire and fear and sadness of earth.

The class list included what I’d consider sensations, like the sexual ones, and had some redundancy. But when an emotion is new, lists can be valuable to help name what we’re feeling.

Brene Brown’s Atlas of emotions also has extra “experiences.” This one is established by science.

The Dalai Lama’s project listed 5 core emotions: anger, fear, disgust, sadness and enjoyment. (You may recognize the characters from the movie Inside Out) They have disgust instead of sexual.

What the class also highlighted was where they suggested the primary emotions showed up as sensations in the body. There will be personal variations but I found it insightful.

Anger: back, neck, shoulders, jaw, head, [eyes hot]
Sadness: eyes, throat, high chest
Fear: belly
Joy: core, spine [throat too]
Sexual: pelvis, genitals, erogenous zones.

Simplifying the process a bit:
1) notice the sensation. Where is it? How would you describe the sensation? (name it but don’t go into the mind for explanations, etc.)
2) take a few gentle, deep breaths
3) can you allow or accept the sensation?
4) match your body to the sensation. How would it move? What sound would it make? (For example, make an angry face and posture and roar.)

This process can allow you to discover the emotion behind the sensation. Name it. You may find talking to it helpful (like a parent or friend).

The key is using the process to recognize the emotional energy that’s contracted and wanting to be released.

Once you’ve connected to the suppressed emotion, you can use the memory of that experience to tap back into it later to resolve it if it isn’t letting go right away.

Care must be taken:
– avoid drifting into making a mood or thinking about what we “should” be experiencing. Just allow it to be what it is.

– avoid narratives. The mind doesn’t like to have emotions for no reason. When we touch into a contraction, mind can look for an explanation. We may notice it pulling from random experiences to make a story. But ignore this. If we let mind get involved, it will short circuit the process. This is an emotional/ energy process. Mind can name but it can’t resolve emotions.

– we can touch into some deep wounds this way, so we need courage and openness to face them. Just remember that the object is to put down our burdens. They just need to be seen and allowed. Not re-lived. You’re in a much stronger place now than when the original impact happened. So it’s going to be OK.

If it’s bigger, then you may need help. Contact a therapist in your area. They can walk you through it and support you.

The goal is to take off our burdens and bring in the light so our life is fuller and richer.

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  1. Michael

    Hi David!

    Ohh i love that you do this now!
    I talked to you about this approach for years lol!
    That is basically what the modern trauma/somatic work is about.

    There is stuff you cannot get to even with the best energy healers ….. one needs to be good with this somatic work. (guess Matt has also talked about his experiences).
    Bringing those different healing approaches together is key.

    And it is suprising how much our body stores and locks away which somewhere down in live causes all kinds of mental and physical symptoms.

    Ones capacity for holding these wounds grows with the amount of doing this work.

    Much love

  2. Tim Owens

    David, this article resonates very strongly with a homeopath I have studied with for my own practice, one Rajan Sankaran. He formulated a process he calls the Sensation Method which your article almost perfectly describes. He has his clients sit quietly and attempt to identify the core sensation behind their current state. In his Method the sensation is then correlated with a specific homeopathic remedy that shares that core sensation. When done successfully profound outcomes are attained and very deep contractions are unravelled. It seems that as we move into higher states of the collective consciousness more of these methods are becoming available.

  3. AB

    Hi David,

    The Taoists work with the body first and get to the mind but the Buddhist work the other way round mind first.

    Another point of reference, Traditional Chinese Medicine correlate emotions with a particular organ meridian which run throughout the body. There are specific points they use to clear the meridians with needles or pressure. Some advanced practitioners place their awareness on a certain point and then trace the meridian and clear the energy through the hands/fingers or feet/toes.
    Lungs- grief/sadness

    On a different point how do you release/clear/heal foreign contractions like ancestor or foreign being/energy or environment/field?

    1. The approach I find best is to go for source first. Then you get to the root of all issues and can act from a neutral place. But this is best served from an effortless practice. Without that, it’s difficult to get there for many.

      However, one shoe doesn’t fit all feet and some things need a different perspective to get at. Once seen, then source can aid the resolution.

      Ah, thanks on Chinese medicine. I’m able to clear channels and spaces but as I’ve written elsewhere, some are very skilled at hiding. 🙂

      I wouldn’t consider ancestor foreign. Our physiology is built from our blood line. And that includes physical, genetic, and energetic “inheritances”. In a sense, we gain a body in exchange for carrying the load. If we can resolve some of that, it’s a blessing for the whole line.

      Other types of contractions and residues vary widely and so the related techniques vary. Removing energy chords, clearing energy sent at us, influences outside and in the aura, and so forth. I did write a series awhile back covering some of this:
      especially in part 3.

  4. scott

    Hi David,

    I would like to go one step further and add that until we fully transform/purify the physical body , which takes years to accomplish (the old Zen masters typically would go into retreat for many years AFter their enlightenment to accomplish this feat) we will experience contractions, obstructions, etc. as we slowly purify the physical form.

    As you point out the body regions and organ systems each have corresponding emotions as Traditional Chinese Medicine tells us. So what I’m suggesting (which you seem to be implying as well) is that sometimes there may not be any actual trauma per se to “work out” rather just the experience of the associated emotions as we clear through particular body regions. An example would be experiencing a phase where we become quick tempered or experience angry outbursts while the liver meridians are being transformed/purified as a result of voluminous amounts of prana/ chi arising and clearing through that area. I experienced this myself. I was a bit concerned at the time but I kind of knew it had no “real” psychological basis or storyline to it. It wasn’t a personality defect but a phase/process; it came and it left. We can respond to trauma with contractions but sometimes contractions, which are solely the result of a reflexive, dualistic ignorance a.k.a “self-grasping ignorance” seem to “create” trauma.

    I love that photograph.

    1. Hi Scott
      Yes, it’s all the bodies but the physical, being the most dense, is often the slowest.
      I would add that we’re in a different time now so it’s not as necessary to withdraw from the world to accomplish things like this, though dharma varies. Most of us have worldly responsibilities.

      I’ll be writing another article on the topic with recent recognitions. The reason why this one didn’t release the way they usually do is that the core is not emotional. There’s just emotional effects.

      Your closing sentences point to what I’m referring to. Will explain…

      PS: You can follow the link in the photo caption for higher resolution versions of the photo.

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