When I free myself in part, the part speaks to the whole. Lying in semi-supine, knees bent, head supported by a few books, I lay my hand atop my thigh. I free my hips, my wrists. I let my legs release from the torso and I experience an ineffable and almost unbearable energy within me. My jaw trembles. I know just a little of what it is like to let energy, chi, the life force, play in me. Is this Alexander Technique?
“We are such stuff as dreams are made on,” said Shakespeare.” We are made of the same stuff as the stars, of the tremulousness of waves. When I give up a bit of the rigor with which I hold myself, I think I experience this real world waviness, an ineffable something that says this is the way you could live your life, tremulous, alive, the forces shaping the universe and holding the worlds in check alive within you.
This is not me saying how free I am, how great I am. This is me saying how dearly I hold on to what I think I am, to my too, too solid flesh and all those drying bones that support it. Got waves? Lie on your back and free your legs, give up the torso’s hold on them. You might not experience anything at first, other than a nice rest and a good breath. But as you become a disciple of the self, you will begin to experience yourself differently, not as a collection of parts but as an energetic whole. Right now, just invoking this, my jaw trembles again.
Why my jaw? Maybe it’s because I hold it so tightly to the skull, maybe because it’s my Achilles’ heel. You may find your own Achilles’ heel. We all have one, a spot where we tend to gather ourselves into ourselves, an accretor of tension. Wherever it is, don’t’ start there, not, for instance at your jaw, your shoulders. Think of the whole. Release your holds. Let the table, the floor, receive your postural habit, and the part will reveal itself. Lie in semi-supine. Get up from your desk right now and have a nice lie down. It just might get juicy, an inward flowing that you may never have experienced before. And when you do, write about it here or on my blog at alanbowers.com