Bodywork Does Not Equal Embodiment

Sometimes when I am in conversation with others about the 5th stage of learning*, embodiment, a response includes the description of some form of bodywork or somatic practice. The bodywork or practice could be yoga or Tai Chi or even a service (acupuncture, massage, energy healing) received from another. Sharing these bodywork practices is a way of relating to the concept of embodiment. In conversation we try to understand concepts from our own experience and various bodywork practices are the closest connection. But while bodywork and somatic practices such as yoga, weight-lifting and even services received are very important activities that support embodiment, they do not equate to embodiment. Not even close.

Embodiment is not a noun but a verb; it is a way of being that is felt and integrated down to the bones - and beyond. In our disembodied modern world, we don't understand the term much less - pardon the pun - embody the way. I'm highlighting here an area to explore in your direct experience that will make a significant difference in your life and well-being. How so, you wonder? Hmm, glad you asked.

When we fully embody our natural home - the body - authentic and creative responses easefully flow from our expression in movement, communication, emotion, feelings and sensing. We tap in to the presently moving river of the now. The river may be flowing gently or may be level-5 white-water rapids. Regardless, when embodied, our way of being in the river is the same: fully present. Embodiment enables us to be fully present to the current reality without future fears & hopes, or past dreams & frets.

Our body is our ally in telling us the truth, waking us up, magnetizing a brilliant life. Most commonly we separate from our body when experiences are too difficult to handle in the present. Most of us reach adulthood with many of these unfelt experiences. Some of us are able to work/play through these experiences with bodywork practices. Some of us require additional support from therapy (traditional and alternative). But the ground and path for all of us is to return to the full embodiment of our human condition, our precious human experience.

When it comes to money, we tend to enter a unique territory of dis-embodiment. Not only is money generally seen as separate from life, it rarely enters our field of awareness for embodiment. This subject and way of being in the world is so important, I am embarking on a new journey. I am exploring, developing and offering a way of deeply connecting heart, mind and soul through the study and practice of what I have named Somatic FinanceTM. Somatic FinanceTM is a new field of study and practice connecting the brilliance of the mind with the integrity of one's center, through the compassion of the heart. Until we fully embody presence and allow money to be an integral part of our development, we are restricting our full creative expression. Somatic FinanceTM calls us to embody our whole way of being, including all of the money experiences - past and present - that prevent us from fully engaging in life.

In the coming months, I look forward to sharing more about Somatic FinanceTM as it comes alive and offers an embodied way of reaching and teaching. Until then, explore your understanding of embodiment. In what ways do you feel fully embodied? In what areas are you still holding on? What body practices are supporting your embodiment? Allow your body to be a part of the exploration.

Embodying embodiment,

* The five stages of learning: 1) Hear, 2) Review, 3) Understand, 4) Practice, and 5) Embody 
Be Moved...

Poem: The Body Knew
Poet: Tim Seibles
Source: Writing from the Body by John Lee

Long before there were words
long before there was patience
the body was twiddling its thumbs

Long before this haze of lies
this swirl of stupid things said and done
the body knew

Long before the animals ran from men
before the lands were named
before the clouds rose up and flew
the body knew

The body knew the tongue
would come up with something to say
that the ears would listen
that the words would come like ants
that soon the brain would grow hard and heavy
The body knew the body would be forgotten

The body knew the body
would be used to take the brain here and there to make Money
to make relationships
to assume the countless postures of idiocy -
to sign the contracts and treaties
to stock the stores the homes the schools the offices
the streets the prisons the battlefields the body-bags

the body knew
it would be lost under fabrics
that soon the belly would hang and the back would be stiff
that the days would pass
the months would pass
the years would pass

the body knew
it would be rated "X"
because the body knew words would be used to deceive
to decorate
to pack the space between bodies
until reaching out meant climbing the mountains of things said
The body knew

the brain would be a bully
that the face would be a canvas forever painted with words
that love could never be what they said it was
that a word was always a mask
The body knew the body

Would dream of headless-ness
the way A breast dreams of bra-lessness of
Blouselessness of sunlight and weightlessness

The body knew that someday
it would have to move
to forget to dance
to forget that it knew
what it knew
that it knew