i arrive at the 4-day bodymind workshop with a lot of tension in my neck-throat-jaw-head. i don’t think it is more than normal in my life, but in the last month or so, i have become much more aware of the tension i live with and take to be a part of me.
i experience the tension as a push—like i’m over-pushing, over-efforting, over-striving to live each moment of my life fully and well. as i’ve become more aware of it, it feels like i engage way too many muscles to do things. i find myself leaning forward to work on the computer when i could be resting with my back supported. i tighten my jaw as part of concentrating or making a point. i hold onto facial expressions, not allowing them to organically fade. i push a lot of energy into my head, causing my neck to tighten and my head to ache…it often feels like the energy is trapped and pushing in and through my neck-throat-jaw-head without releasing.
our first embodiment practice is about relaxing the face. perfect! that’s what i’ve been working with! so, as i open my jaw wide, allowing the breath and sound to move in and out at its own pace, i practice yielding the push, letting it go, softening, releasing. soft face, soft breath, soft chest, soft, alive core and pelvis. and breath, breath, breath…my face begins to sink into itself, yielding to its softer, more fluid self. noface.
i feel as if my yielding face has no familiar contours, no familiar holding patterns. noface erases the structures that i know to be me. i am sinking into a deeper and softer sense of self.
with this melting comes a clearer awareness of my core of aliveness and life energy. this experience of me is deeper, pulsating, flowing, softer. yielding to noface directs my attention to the circulation of life in my body. life coming in and life going out, with or without my conscious awareness or participation.
i practice yielding to noface all four days—in the workshop and out of it. i have no idea what my face looks like and i don’t care. i have no self-image worth defending right now. inner critic thoughts arise about what’s wrong with my experience. i return to noface.
dropping the thoughts and sinking into noface puts me in contact with life moving me, and the thoughts lose their power. i am here, yielding, melting, sensing, feeling, responding to and with life.
the quieter you become, the more you are able to hear – rumi
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