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Attunement: Healing Ourselves & Our Community

The more consciousness you bring into your body,
the stronger your immune system becomes.
It is as if every cell awakens and rejoices.
Your body loves your attention.
It is also a potent form of self-healing.

~ Eckhart Tolle ~

Blessed greetings to all my precious people!!

We are in the midst of Autumn, celebrating the season of the Lung and Large Intestine systems where Chinese medicine theory states that letting go, releasing and practicing surrender are the predominant themes. The Lung is known as the “delicate organ” located in the most superficial aspect of the upper body and therefore most sensitive to environmental changes such as wind, dryness, heat, cold and damp.  The Lung is also associated with the emotion of grief and sorrow. 

Traditional Chinese medicine acknowledges the Lung as much more than a mechanical apparatus; in fact the Lung serves as a processing system within the body that supports breathing, and influences the strength and quality of the voice, the functioning of the nasal passageways, sinuses, throat, and maintains the skin. The Lung regulates and distributes water in the body, and when malfunctioning it produces pathological phlegm, or mucus, that can obstruct the nose, throat, voice, lymph pathways, skin, and chest.

Lung and Large Intestine are the organs of the Metal element which represent the functions in nature associated with purification and boundaries – the letting in and the letting go – as well as the corresponding emotion of grief that is part of the letting go process.  Imagine this: we inhale and connect to the outside world, literally bringing the air of the world into our bodies and our blood, invigorating our cells so that air actually transforms and supports us. When we exhale we let go of metabolic waste products as well as emotions and energetic blockages that no longer serve us.  This in and out breathing happens about 22,000 times a day, yet how much do we really notice the miracle of input, output and transformation?

Chinese medicine theory assigns each organ in the body with a role to play, and the connection and interdependence of all the organ systems is paramount.  The Lung is the Minister of the body, tending to the Sovereign Emperor of the Heart and constantly monitors, regulates and filters all that reaches the Heart, where emotions must be processed. 

Breathing exercises commonly found in many systems of spiritual practice such as yoga, chanting and meditation help strengthen and purify the Lung, which in turn supports the Heart, both of which are integral to our body-mind-spirit health.  Focused breathing techniques are important to invigorate, restore, relax and calm the sympathetic nervous system, allowing one to be more present, more aware and able to respond to situations with mindful intention.  The ability to regulate breathing and consciously influence our nervous system is the gift we can give ourselves on a daily basis.  But how can we do this?  And why?

Thomas Huebl, author, teacher, and renowned international facilitator of workshops on collective trauma healing and resilience, speaks eloquently to the need for all of us to not only be listening to each other, but more importantly, be listening to our own Self, and he quotes Fares Boustanji to sum it all up:  “To get in contact with the other, you have to get in contact with yourself.”  Thomas reminds us that we need to be in touch with ourselves, in communication with our inner world that speaks via the body, so that we can cultivate a safe space to process and distill information that informs us about ourselves and how to relate to others.  Until we are finding time to be quiet, be watchful, be contemplative and practice this on a regular basis, we will miss the signals.  

In order to clear the patterns of accumulated energetic blocks in our body, Thomas Huebl reminds us that we must first be able to acknowledge them. These patterns and blocks, these traumas, are the combination of our own lived experiences, the conditions of the society in which we were raised as well as the epigenetic connection from our ancestors.  It is not possible to be fully present, aware and in harmony with Life when the energetic flow is obstructed, because where trauma resides is a space that restricts and prevents resonance.  We cannot fully feel our own Self, nor can we feel each other, nor nature, not even society in these instances. Information flow is blocked because of the “stuck” energetic of emotion, created in our adaptive response to an event, a feeling, or a circumstance from the past that now shows up as pain, anger, headaches, irritability, heart palpitations, shortness of breath and more.

The wisdom of the body we inhabit is mysterious, miraculous and profound, but we are often distracted from the messages it constantly sends to us.  We are not always practiced nor trained to be good listeners of our own body and even less skilled at interpreting the messages we notice.  It could be a headache, a knee twinge, heightened irritability, acid reflux, perhaps trouble sleeping or even an ongoing sense of distraction and anxiety.  These “things” –  the symptoms that interrupt our daily life, that annoy us with inconvenience, that distract us from our schedules and plans, are actually “the things” that are our Life.  But even as we search for “the thing” that can make those signs and symptoms go away so we can get on with our daily life, they are in fact putting us on notice to stop, listen and begin to pay attention.  They serve as the small whispers encouraging us to find our center and be more attuned, with our own Self as well as our family, friends, colleagues and community.

Attunement:  HOW DO WE DO THIS?

Choose to create space to be quiet and become aware of your body and breath.  This does not necessarily mean we need to sit on a chair, or a cushion, in a certain pose but I encourage you to choose to be CURIOUS about your Self and begin to engage with all your parts, as if you are traveling to a new country, or city, and observing things with new eyes.  This is instrumental in creating ways to meet your Self, wherever you are today, and simply bear witness and observe with kindness and compassion.  The more “in tune” you become with your own Self, the more inclined you are to be present and “in tune” with those around you.  Each inhale allows you to take things in, and each exhale allows you to release, and create more space so that you can reflect, digest experiences, integrate sensations, rearrange your thoughts and your physical responses to experiences.  The practice of conscious breathing and bearing witness to your Self is part of the built in healing gift of your body which regulates your nervous system.  This practice will allow you to be more grounded, able to respond instead of automatically reacting, and can also help those you spend time with co-regulate their nervous system as well.  I encourage you to watch this youtube video of Thomas Huebl speaking:  

If you have been on my treatment table or in my healing sanctuary, you know that the magic of the healing STARTS with you!!!  As the practitioner, it is my role to be the conduit, the channel, holding space as your body, mind and spirit move into coherence.  The foundation of Chinese medicine is the guiding principle, which reiterates the interconnectedness of all things and the relationship between what presents on the surface, and what is at the root of the disharmony.  If you have any questions about what to do next in your healing journey, please consider reaching out so that we can support your efforts.

We design the world through the relationships that we live and through the relational qualities that we pass on to the next generation. Practicing in our intimate relationships is actually a rewriting of the past. We can heal, we can integrate, and through that we can change the world.”

– THOMAS HÜBL

This article was posted in Autumn, Health, Meditation, Mindfulness, Self-Care, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Wellness and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow comments with the RSS feed for this post. Both comments and trackbacks are closed.
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