Just the other day, I had a conversation with someone about addiction, and whether or not it is possible for an addicted individual to change. Many people seem to be dismayed, due to experiences of their own, or due to the experiences of loved ones who have danced with addiction. The common threads weaving their way through the difficulty of moving beyond addiction seem to be deeply embedded thought patterns, fears, and reactions living within the psyche. To take this a step further, that which is heavily programmed within the psyche can eventually settle in and become programmed within the body.
So we may address addiction issues by accessing the deeper mind directly, through methods such as meditation, psychotherapy, counseling. We can also address addictions by accessing the deeper layers of the body through conscious movement practices along the lines of yoga, t'ai chi, martial arts, and dance. It is ultimately a matter of training ourselves to look at things in new and different ways in order to see that which we haven't seen before.
I am a firm believer that people can change. Not just a believer, but a faith holder in this regard.
This is for two reasons:
1. I have seen it happen. Time and time again.
2. There is one primal, universal law. And that is change. Change is the only thing we can be sure of.
The following is an excerpt from Richard Miller's book, "Yoga Nidra". This is a wonderful book for describing the shifting mechanisms that take place with this sacred practice:
Awakening from the dream Yoga, often inadequately translated as “union,” represents both the action of awakening to, as well as the description of, our underlying True Nature or pure Being that is the birthing ground of authentic spontaneity. Nidra or “sleep,” on the other hand, is the state in which we are unconscious to True Nature, when we are identified with, and swayed by, thoughts and actions that are based on misperception and reactive patterns. Yoga Nidra represents a paradox and is a play on the words “sleep” and “awake” as it means “The Sleep of the Yogi,” and implies that the normal person is asleep to their True Nature through all states of consciousness—waking, dreaming, and deep sleep—while the yogi is one who is awake to and knows his or her True Nature across all states, even sleep.
Some students of mine during the Arts Infused Learning Program
Children are natural movers. They are fully engaged with their bodies by default. I can attest to this by the way I am woken each morning by my 3-year old son; ``Mom, I`m hungry! Mom, I`m thirsty! Mom, look, there`s the sun, I want to play outside!`` At this tender age, it is natural to sense and express our emotions directly through our bodies. Not much thought is given about how to do it, it simply happens. It is natural. All cells and neurons are switched on and firing, and given enough fuel to the emotions, we naturally sense that the time has come to RELEASE. And the most direct way to do this, is to let it out the same door it came in - the body. The deeper the release, the more intense the expression, and the greater the healing. Which is why movement therapy, in its direct and authentic sense, given freedom and permission to simply BE is an astonishingly profound and fast way to heal the body-mind-spirit system.
This also goes for the healing potential that movement holds for those suffering from PTSD, anxiety disorders and the like.
I really appreciate the following write up by Brigitta White, and I admire all of the ladies involved in this Memorial Day healing arts project for their heart-filled dedication to the work. Thank you|*
This Memorial Day weekend seven dance/movement therapists across Maryland, DC and Virginia came together to support children between the ages of 6-10 dealing with grief and PTSD. For the second year in a row, the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) expressed their desire to have dance therapy groups as part of the grief counseling component. The Good Grief Camp is put together by TAPS and is held at the Crystal Gateway Marriott in Arlington, VA over Memorial Day weekend.
Welcome! Thank you for visiting my blog space. In this place, I will share writings of my own, along with other events and musings from the world of Movement Medicine, Dance Therapy, Yoga and Shamanic Healing.