breath,  embodiment

The Life Changing Gift of Learning to Embody

We live in an ego-driven society. It wouldn’t be too far off to say we’re all crazy — delusional even. We believe ourselves to be one thing, but that thing is almost entirely an image created in our minds. Our true selves are beyond thought, beyond mental projections, habits, even our physical being-ness.

In many cases and places in the Western world, it’s every man for himself. Professionally the majority are all about making money and achieving the American dream.

Striving to do better and become better versions of ourselves isn’t a bad thing. Making money isn’t bad either. But as a collective, we’ve lost sight of ourselves and our place in the world, why we are on this planet at all.

We are here to further our evolvement. We are here to serve others. We are here to make the world a better place.

I’ve been on a spiritual path for all of my adult life — I would describe myself a seeker. I don’t have all the answers, but I do feel strongly that we have a purpose to serve during this lifetime. I also believe that …

Nothing happens by chance. We are all products of our unfolding, especially if we are living intentionally.

I was lost for a long time — and no, I’m not yet found. But I am blessed with many tools that keep me on the path. Somehow, they continue to reveal themselves to me, almost effortlessly, though in between lulls of lostness, for years at a time.

Two tools that make me grow deeper every single day .. breath and embodiment. Well, the steps toward embodiment, anyway; I’m not there yet. I’m not an embodied human being, and maybe I never will be, but I am learning what it means every day.

‘Embody’ according to Merriam-Webster: to give a body to (a spirit) : incarnate. Confusing? I find it better described in this way:

Embodiment is the act of fully inhabiting ones body; living within the felt sensations directly perceived by the body — instead of through the filter of the mind (ego).

Sounds simple, but it’s much harder than it sounds. It’s subtle and it’s profound.

Our ego, where we live the majority of the time, is a product of the left brain. Embodiment on the other hand, derives from the Soma, a part of the right brain.

Because some of us live in our egos/left brains almost exclusively, it takes practice to learn to embody. But the good news is that through that practice we begin to have openings. Concrete openings. New neural pathways are formed in the brain and we directly experience new ways of being in the world. Suddenly what we thought was impossible is quite possible — and the more we reside in the Soma, the more ‘offline’ the left brain (and our ego) goes.

We take our attention inside in very specific ways. We visualize first and with practice we go deeper. We see and feel what our bodies are telling us directly, instead of through the filter of the ego.

Ever heard the saying, “you have issues in your tissues?” It’s a proven fact that we store deep emotions, our past, our stories and scars within the tissues of our bodies. So much of our healing truly cannot happen using only the mind — and that’s been the way of it in our culture for many decades now.

By tapping into the body and our direct perception of it, we have so much more available to us. Our bodies are, in fact, far more intelligent than our minds — and our bodies never lie.

The world needs more people who are embodied. I’m learning it myself so I can evolve as a human. I am never bored. I hope you’ll come along with me on the journey.

I have many articles related to this topic planned in the coming days, weeks, months. I am absorbed in it — via practice, study and teaching as part of my 500 hour RYT program. I am using the term #everydayembodiment because it’s a practice I’m committed to every day. I am recording those nuggets and am writing about them as an offering to the world … short practices of five to twenty minutes each day so they become a way of life.

I am blown away each time I learn more (cognitively with my brain), but to describe the embodiment process is hard. Feelings of both confusion and bliss abound.

We teach others what we most need to learn ourselves. This is one instance I’m happy to say I’m out of my mind.

Live. Breathe. Be. Embody — yourself, your humanness. It’s such a gift.

Image: Ester Marie Doysabas

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