Sunday, February 8, 2015

Welcoming myself back

Having just revisited this website and seeing the date of my most recent blog, May 2013, it made me wonder why I dropped this opportunity to share some insights, visions, and challenges. I am a breathworker and I deeply feel and know that the breath is the most basic and powerful doorway to inner wisdom and well being that we can (and must) use every day.  Not a tradition in the world that does not, in one way or another, acknowledge that.

So, relearning how to breathe and using various techniques, such as the connected breath, which can alter body chemistry as well as alter consciousness, is too fundamental to be bypassed. The breath begins the path of wellness and will guide us every step, as long as we allow.

However, should I continue this blog effort, I imagine it must include insights from my ongoing wellness exploration. From the most refined, our breath, to the deep and dense body/mind held trauma, towards even denser heavy metal toxic loads, there's much to explore.

I have been a student of many natural healing arts through my years and, due to a personal health issue, have been forced to really practice that which I have preached. And it has been a good and worthy journey, showing me that I am stronger and weaker than I ever imagined.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Forget milk...Got Breath?

What is it about the way in which we live our lives that, quite literally, takes our breath away? How is it that, all too often, the breath that we have as infants, gloriously announcing our arrival, begins to close down, restricting our most vital connection to life, and continues on until our last diminished gasp? The fact that, for most of us, the umbilical cord is cut way too early, providing a shockingly cold and painful first breath, does not help the cause. We then do everything possible to stifle and shush our babies, limiting even more of their genuine expression. As we age, we learn that, through stifling our emotions, our thoughts, and our feelings, we can create what we perceive as a safe haven in a threatening world. we do things to seek approval of our lifeline, our parents, and therefore we continue to close down our breath. We all know these tools. Don't want to cry at a movie? Hold your breath. Don't want to feel the intense emotions of loss, grief, betrayal? Breathe slow and shallow. Don't get me wrong; we do these things in order to feel safe and secure in a world that is anything but. However, where we suffer as humans is that we remain closed, our breath remains limited and suppressed, and along with it, we lose our vitality and our innate aliveness. And the beauty of it all is that it is remarkably easy to regain our free and open breath. Our bodies respond to this re-opening much as a dehydrated person does towards a glass of clean, refreshing water; with ease, comfort, and joy. Of course, much of what we have been suppressing or repressing within will need to be released from or integrated into our being. Though not always pleasant, through the breath this letting go can be as graceful as opening our hands from a tight fist. And through this, we remember our genuine birthright.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Putting First Things First

I have been studying and teaching what i'll call natural living and healing arts since I was a youngun, fortunate in having my backyard leading right in to a pretty dense woodland, where we kids would spend most of our time. Back then, as long as we were home by dinner, we could explore wherever and whatever we wished, not only unsupervised but in a place where no adult dare set foot. By the age of five we all carried knives, made fires, built shelters, stalked, tracked, harvested plants for food and fiber, and basically observed what Edmond Szekely called "the greatness in the smallness". And we knew, we really knew, that somehow we were a part of this all, we were safe, and that we were at home on this beautiful, flourishing planet. Now, many moons later, I find myself a relatively old dad with an 8 year old son under my wing... and the idea of letting him out on his own, with only the guarantee that he comes running home at the sound of the dinner bell, is a letting go, a trusting, that I can not even begin to consider. And I truly don't believe things are that much more dangerous now than they were 50 years ago, certainly not based on crime statistics; I just believe that we are surrounded, bombarded, with images of fear and danger and even more worrisome than that, we have never been more disconnected from, even at war with, our natural world. And though my son is developing to be a skilled young woodsman, for now it will all happen under my watchful eye. I now run a summer camp for kids where we teach nature awareness and wilderness "living" skills ( I prefer "living" over "survival" a fierce word which assumes struggle) And, before these kids learn anything about how to "make it" in the woods, before we even think about building a fire or shelter , purifying water or eating from earths bounty, I teach them the most basic of well being skills; how to breathe a full and natural breath. With the ease and calm that we get from allowing our bodies to be fully breathed, we can make wiser decisions in any situation which presents itself. Of course we, the living, all breathe, though most of us breathe as if we are not really safe, at home, on our Mother Earth. Fortunately, re-learning how to breathe naturally, even with a lifetime of self induced choking and tightening, can be as easy as, well, breathing. Easy but not always so simple, there is nothing more vital than re-cognizing the power of our own breath. Do I hear an Ahhhhhmen?!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Truth Is As Close As The Nose On Your Face

This morning I sat through one of those truly annoying on line infomercials, the ones where you don't know how long your going to be suckered in while you wait to find out the cost of this once in a lifetime miracle. Anyway, this one was selling, er, offering me the rare opportunity to purchase, a water ionizer to insure that all of Lifes liquid elixir  that one drinks is at a  ph of 9.5. They made a great case about the benefits of drinking super alkaline, antioxidant rich, and ultra hydrating ionized water and they had me vowing that I was going to pay even closer attention to every sacred drop of water that enters this wet body, with or without their oh so surprisingly inexpensive machine.

 Well $2,400 won't be flyin' out the door just yet ( lemons , limes , veggie juices n quality salts will do fine for now) .... but THIS was the line in the ad that made me all huffy n puffy (not a good thing for a breathworker!). Quoting Dr. Robert Young, it said " The aging and dying process is largely the process of dehydration and, in my 25 years of studying nutrition, I have found nothing that a person can do that is more important to his or her health than change the kind of water they drink" noting that "all the good food you eat can't make up for the bad water you might drink."

 Excellent point, dear doctor, but I must clearly raise you one on your assessment of our human condition. Truly, the element most vital and immediate for our well being is the air we breathe...and the way we breathe it. All the good water you drink can't make up for a closed and suppressed breath. On average we breathe about 20,000 each day and when we can improve on each breath, even a little, the benefits can be enormous.

 From birth up to this very moments , we are our breath and our breath tells us how we are. However, with life's many traumas, both great and minor, our breath typically becomes limited and restricted, and our lives follow suit. The great news is that we are humans (c'mon, it is a blessing!) and , though we hold these limitations and wounds in our bodies more than other species, we also have the capacity to consciously relearn how to have a free and open breath, easily and with no money down. And no amount of water, no matter the ph, serves as a greater guide offering wisdom, guidance, and release than our own most sacred breath.