Monday, August 18, 2008

Workshop with Arturo

I spent the weekend hanging at Lulu Bandha's! Always a good thing. This weekend was Arturo's workshop on Touching from the Heart.

So many insightful moments. I learned a lot. I wasn't sure what to expect and was decidedly nervous, thinking that maybe we were going to learn massage or something--I was clueless. Turns out, I wasn't asked to DO anything to anyone, but just to BE with them in more effective ways. It was like majoring in Touch with concentrations in Energy and Healing.

Saturday Arturo guided us through the softest, slowest meditation on touching. I was in a group with him and Kira. We slowly felt our way from the outermost energy layers through into skin, squishy layer under skin, connective tissue, muscle, bone (Arturo says the lighter the touch often the more you can feel). It was a beautiful way to just BE with someone and I felt safe and warm and totally in love with Kira.

Getting touched (Arturo on one arm and Kira on the other) was a more difficult experience but a fascinating one. I vacillated between accepting this wonderful feeling of being cared for and an anxiety I often get when touched. But I didn't worry about showing the anxiety since I had already shared (with the entire class) that it might happen. I just felt their presence as something to come back to when I was taken to a scary place.

Sunday was also amazing. The self-meridian massage was a fun way to learn to feel chi. I practiced it this morning to start my day. Molly cracked me up during the laughter yoga exercise, and I didn't think I would ever be able to stop laughing.

We also practiced Grounding and Centering our energy. A partner pushed our shoulders and to resist we had to make our energy larger, wider. This gave me a whole new way to relate to my emotions. Instead of diving into every little blip that comes up on my busy emotional radar, I can change my energetic shape, and grow into something bigger (Arturo discussed ways to respond to attacks, by taking on the energetic shape of square, circle, or triangle). During this exercise Craig called me a grasshopper, which I took as a great compliment. :)

Craig and I were partners again for the final partner exercise, a Healing meditation. Arturo chanted the word HEAL while we did our best to resonate with a Healing Quality while holding our hands over a spot of our partner's choosing. I chose my left knee, and throughout the exercise I felt the slight pain there dissipate and reappear in the bottom of my foot and then disappear completely. Craig said my energy felt "jagged" just over the top of my shin bone, which happens to be a place where I've been feeling a faint tingling for the past couple of weeks. Crazy.

I got chills when Arturo talked about the Tibetan monks' ability to heal the sick just by chanting , "Already healed. Already whole. Already well."

Arturo talked about how you can't just drop your shoulder off at the shop to get fixed--healing is something a person has to be wholly involved in. In fact, he said, he often doesn't have to do anything but hold a safe space in which peoples' own "body-mind intelligence" can do the healing work. So when I had a headache later that night I didn't look for a quick external fix; I held my hands on my head and thought 'heal, heal, heal.' I softened and relaxed myself until the pain dissipated.

How can I ever live without Lulu Bandha's?