Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Tuesday, June 6: Learn

Wake up, learn. This is the start of a good life. Literally, this is how we started our lives, we came out into the world and we were already awake to the present, no memories or future, just blamo, here we are, air to breathe, gravity to sense, someone, hopefully, to hold us and to feed us. Life on planet Earth, as opposed to life in the ocean Mom, begins.
We are placed on our backs. We sleep a lot. When we wake up, what do we do? We learn. How to we learn? We move around. We wiggle, we jiggle, we try this, we try that. We are great scientists, we are in a grand experiment, how does this body thing we seem to be in, work? We move our arms, we move our legs, we move our backs, we move our heads. We have no big program, and we are very interested as we discover certain moves yield interesting results we might want to try again. Hand to the mouth? Hmm. That one was possibilities. Hand to the knee? Cool. Rolling a little with our bellies out. Rolling a little with our bellies back. We try everything.

We are amazing and life is amazing. We learn. We experiment. We play. We eat. We pee and poo. We sleep. We are picked up and fussed over, hopefully. Life is full. We are learning.

This big brain of ours is discovering that there is some “me” inside all this wiggling and peeing and eating and pooing, and this “me” can do certain things today that we did not do yesterday. This is learning and we don’t know we are learning, and if we are lucky, we aren’t “helped” by the giants, and we learn to roll over and crawl and sit up and stand and fall down and get up again and walk all on our own, lots of “mistakes,” lots of “dead ends,” which is to say, lots of information about possibilities.

This is a kind of learning we could wonderfully revive in our “adult” lives. Try out the yoga pose. Great. Feel your body. Feel your heart. Notice your breathing. Feel expanded and alive and vibrant. Now try a slightly different form, maybe belly out and then belly in. Try shifting the weight more to one foot and more to the other. Try rotating the head one way and the eyes the other. Try shoulder blades a little more back, and a little more forward. Try ribs compacted and ribs expanded.
Play with it, and see what you can learn about you being in the body/mind that is “you.” Who are you, right now? What can you learn right now?

Sitting at a desk or in a chair, how are your feet? Are they both on the floor? If not, how is it different if they are? Are you following your breathing? Is it ( which is to say, are you) different when you do? What is the difference? How many places do you feel the difference?

How can you create more comfort and awareness for yourself right now? What shifts make it (you) feel just a little worse, and which just a little better, and which are just interestingly different.

There is a lot to learn. The brain first started by bringing sense and order to the world for us, as we moved and discovered how that all worked. A lot of this book will be using the Feldenkrais Method® to rekindle possibilities of moving and learning and being present. In particular, I am indebted to Anat Baniel, the progenitor of the Anat Baniel Method of Feldenkrais work, for her emphasis on Feldenkrais as a learning system.

And this book is beyond learning just this, for to be whole I want to be present and I want to be healthy and I want to be happy and useful. And in love. These are all included in the learning that this book is about opening up. Come on in. Enjoy.


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