Often in the physical and mental business of life we are generally aware that we have a body and use it to get from place to place or move things in the physical world. Yet our body & emotions become habituated to a baseline of stress, tension, neglect & desensitization.
We, and general societal consensus may even come to view this muted & fragmented connection with our body & emotions as normal. Not realizing how much such habituated tension, under-appreciation & constriction has acclimated us to skim above the surface of our capacity for deeper unitive comfort, relaxation, healthy vitality, emotional warmth, graceful movement, sensual aliveness and peaceful, natural enjoyment of our embodying consciousness.
This simple practice described below helps resensitize & unify embodying consciousness.
* Begin by standing in a balanced upright position, feet parallel about hip width apart, tailbone slightly tucked under to allow tension in the hips to flow into the ground, shoulders & hands relaxed at your sides, chin brought back slightly so the top middle of the head is suspended from above and balanced so not jutting forward or backward but poised along the mid-line, with the body in the most balanced position.
Alternatively this can be done while lying on your back, best to not use a pillow behind the head as that would push the head forward creating strain in the neck. The back of head is aligned with back of spine, which is straight from tip of head to tailbone, with legs and feet continuing comfortably down through the midline so the entire body is as centered as possible.
* Allow your breathing to deepen into smooth, slow & full inhalations and exhalations. Filling the entire lungs bottom to top and front and back. No rush. There is no where to be but here, now. Savoring the feelings of life energy flowing into and through your being, and exchanging with the world around you.
* While we can begin from any area of the body, for this example we will start at the feet.
Feel your feet. Feel their position relative to your lower legs, hips and the rest of your body.
Do they feel cool, warm or neutral.
Allow awareness to permeate all areas of your feet and ankles, gradually being aware of and relaxing excess tension.
Continue here as long as you like.
* Then expand awareness to your lower legs up into the knees. Repeating this focus of attentive feeling awareness with your lower legs and knees. Feeling into the sensations of muscles, ligaments, tendons, blood flow. Noticing any areas of tension, and allowing loving awareness to permeate into your legs and softening the tension into deeper relaxed comfort.
Lingering here as well as long as you like.
* Now flowing awareness up through the feet, lower legs and knees into the upper legs., pelvis / hips and glutes. Allowing deep relaxation to spread throughout your entire legs, flowing naturally into your hips, pelvis and gluteal muscles, rectum, sexual organs and bladder. Softening and expanding this area of your being.
Remembering to breath full, slow breaths and allowing this life energy to warmly permeate from your feet through your legs into your hips & pelvic area.
Often this area is quite tense, constricted & desensitized in many people, given acquired cultural beliefs which normalize fear & suppression of full, free feeling & movement in & through the pelvic area. Also spending many hours sitting as many of us do for work, driving, etc contributes to constricted, tight pelvic muscles and fascia and diminished blood and energy flow.
Feeling the inhalations and exhalations gently expanding and contracting, like waves rippling out and washing away any excess tension. Bringing a loving, accepting awareness into your hips / pelvic area, gradually transforming emotional & physical blockage, pain, numbness, shame, aversion or other disconnected energies, into a deeply loving, appreciative, soft & open feeling.
This is the core, stabilizing, generative and rooting center. It is also our center of gravity when standing.
And our metaphysical center from which we dive inward & radiate outward.
With regular practice this metaphysical quality of our center transforms from an idea into a deeply beautiful, experiential feeling reality. Embrace this aspect with loving awareness, allowing this love to expand in all directions throughout your emotional-physical consciousness.
Remaining here as long as feels good for you.
* Moving attention up into the abdomen, diaphragm and lower back.
Continuing to feel deeply. Expanding & contracting the slow, rhythmic waves of life energy through the abdominal muscles, lower back muscles and lumbar spine. Feeling the sensations and shapes of your intestines, stomach, gallbladder, spleen, kidneys, liver, adrenal glands, pancreas.
Allowing any emotional feelings to arise & dissolve without attaching to any one. Allowing a deep calm, compassion and appreciation for oneself and all beings to emerge. Softening the belly, diaphragm and lower back.
Lingering here as desired.
* Now flowing deepening relaxation, peace & loving awareness up into your entire back, upper spine, chest, breasts, sternum and shoulders.
Feel your heart faithfully pulsing. Flowing life giving warm blood throughout your being, in this cosmic expression of loving union, of giving and receiving to & within yourself, relationally with others and Life generally. Feeling fully.
Feeling into any armoring you may have subconsciously or consciously built up around your heart, lungs, chest & breasts and the beautiful capacity of this area to experience, give & receive loving sensitivity, healthy vulnerability, empathy & tenderness.
Allow the chattering, noisy mind to quiet its projected interpretations and beliefs such that a deeper equilibrium, non assumptive & open hearted awareness gradually emerges into the quiet space opened up. An awareness which recognizes that there are often many alternative interpretations, meanings, intentions and thus ways of experiencing our relationship with ourselves and each other / others.
Allowing the hearts warmth, compassion, empathy, vulnerability, courage, sensitivity & willingness to love to fully blossom. Opening to the hearts harmonious, balanced interconnection as the guide of the societal conditioned mind which often projects as much or more than it really perceives clearly.
Softening the armoring against natural desires for feeling deeply the healing pleasures of loving & being loved, of sensitivity, empathy and intimacy with oneself, others and life. Feeling the spaces between the ribs, diaphragm, vertebrae, shoulders, chest and upper back release, open & expand progressively.
Feeling into this area as long as you want.
* Expanding out from the torso, heart through the shoulders, arms and hands.
Noticing areas of tension, holding and excessive gripping. How even when not holding on to any object, the arms and hands may still be holding tension, fingers perhaps somewhat curling into a grip.
Breath relaxation, trust and sensitivity into and through the shoulders, arms, hands and out the fingertips. Exhaling tension out to dissipate into the earth. Noticing the angle of your shoulders and upper arms. Do the shoulders curl forward, caving somewhat into the chest? Allowing the upper arms to relax back somewhat, relaxing the shoulder joint.
Remaining here as desired.
* Flowing relaxation up into and through the neck into the head, brain, thryoid, scalp and face. Feeling a warm, loving kindness permeate this entire area from the inside out.
Noticing your jaw. How does it feel? Does it feel tense, are teeth held tightly together? Or are you allowing your jaw and mouth to be relaxed, perhaps even with a gentle smile expanding through your mouth and face? Anatomically, frowning requires use of more muscles than smiling does. Which could imply that gently smiling, or at least a calm feeling of happiness and contentment is our natural way of being.
Feeling warm, sensitive awareness relaxing the muscles around the eyes. Softening the gaze whether eyes are open or closed.
Dissolving tension around & inside the ears. And flowing this deep relaxation into the brain. Lightly permeating the cervical vertebrae, spinal cord and brain with quietly accepting, loving feeling awareness. Washing negative patterns of thinking and verbal chatter out from the core of the mind. Refreshingly bathed with pure, clear, open minded & refreshed perception.
How does your scalp feel? Sensing and releasing tension in the scalp. Allowing yourself to totally relax.
Feeling into this area as much as you feel open to.
* Bringing all of this together even more fully, allow your awareness to expanding into the depths and breadth of your entire body from bottom of your feet to the crown of your head. From the deepest center of your body to the surface of your skin. Even radiating out beyond your physical body.
Feeling simultaneously this deep ecstasy arising from opening your self to your body consciousness with deep feeling love, appreciation, relaxation and freedom. Feeling the freeing release of fragmenting breaks, constrictions or other desensitizing blockages in any & all areas of your body, & emotions, which allows a deepening unification, integration and harmony to become your new normal for experiencing and relating with and from your embodying being.
Feeling the interconnectedness of physical, emotional, mental and spiritual consciousness with renewed grace & pleasurable relaxation.
Gradually, slowly moving into the rest of your day or night with this harmonious energy.