The Body Knows

by Maria Arrington | General

The human body has always amazed me. From childhood I have been fascinated by anatomy and physiology, if only from a child’s point of view in the beginning. In the medical world, there is an unspoken belief that the physical body is a solid thing and that all human bodies have identical or near identical anatomy. I have depended on that as a nurse. I must know the anatomy in order to do my job. I need to know where the muscles are located and where the veins flow. In that paradigm, I assume that each human is built the same and that the physical structure and function is solid and immutable.

When my life began to include healing work and especially bodywork, I had to admit that I wasn’t seeing such solidity. With Therapeutic Touch, of course, the energy field is fantastically fluid and responsive in the moment. I was fascinated to see the solid physical body respond to that energy flexibility in a very palpable way. I have seen bodywork make surprising changes as well. I see the edema in a surgical site minimize and disappear in a time frame usually unknown in a post-operative patient. Muscle spasms soften, posture shifts, extremities lengthen, pain and limited range of motion ease or disappear. Things that as a nurse I accepted as a routine part of recuperation were not as immutable as I believed.

This is what I know: The body has its own wisdom and it shares that wisdom with us when our intent involves working for the highest good. This is the major underlying tenet of Therapeutic Touch and it lies at the basis of many other kinds of healing as well.

How can it be that our bodies understand things while our conscious minds have no clue? This is the magic of natural healing! At the core basis of life there lies an intrinsic force that moves everything towards wholeness. Everything! If we can stay in balance with that force, we embody health. Departure from that pattern leads us into various ways of being ill or diseased. We may depart from that underlying template of wellness through our choice of diet, too much or too little exercise, attitude, exposure to environments that are not part of that pattern of wholeness, emotional experiences and responses that are not balanced, etc, etc. There are lots of ways we fall away from the template of wellness. In the depth of ourselves lies an intimate understanding of what it means to be whole which we derive from our connection to all of life. Our bodies can express this understanding to us as can our emotions, our inner mind, and our spiritual selves. When I begin to work with a client, my first job is align myself with my own inner knowledge of this wholeness. From that personal place, I am in touch with the template of wholeness that underlies all of life. My intention to work for the best possible outcome for this client seems to open a door that give me entre` to a dialogue with the inner wisdom of the client. This rapport between my own inner wholeness and the client’s innate wholeness begins to direct the choices that I make in assisting this person back to a place of wellness.

The process I have just described is not one used only by natural healers. It is something that each of us can use to direct us in our choices toward balance in our own lives. The body knows! Find your own path to that inner wisdom, and information or understandings will become evident that will guide you. Most people access that path by quieting outer activity. Meditation is an ideal way to find that center. There are many types of meditation including movement meditation. If you aren’t one for quiet, try just 10 minutes at first. Use the breath as a focus and allow each part of the body to relax. Notice where the mind is busy and allow that zinging to slow down to the rhythm of the breath. Release the things that are seducing the mind. (They can always be picked up afterward if you really want them!) You will find yourself in a place that may be new to you. A place of quiet and reflection. This is the place where you can ask questions of yourself:

  • How am I feeling right now?
  • What is causing me to feel this way?
  • What should I do to feel more balanced?
  • What are the underlying issues feeding this imbalance?

When I am doing healing work, I am continually asking questions and I have learned to trust the answers that seem to come even when they are only intimations. I will find my hands or my attention drawn to an area and even become aware of what my approach to the area should be. I ask the questions in dialogue with the client’s inner wise one, and that one replies by guiding me through the session. As you inhabit that quiet place within yourself, answers and impressions will come for you too. The body knows! Find your path to this inner wisdom and begin to ask the questions that you have. The answers are known to you already and will come up from that quiet inner pool so that you can begin to move yourself toward greater balance and harmony with that template of wholeness within yourself.