Welcome to the launch of my “Occupy Your Body!” movement. My mission in life is to help people come back home to themselves, to integrate body, mind and soul and to be grounded in embodied self-awareness. That’s the only way to “be mindful,” ‘live in the Present Moment,” or have awareness of what is really going on. It is also what creates and maintains health and happiness. Maybe even world peace.
I’m well aware that most people in this culture won’t really know what I’m talking about. I’ve been asked: What does “embodied” mean? Aren’t we all already living in bodies? What does my body know that I don’t? And what difference does it make?
This blog will answer those questions and more. I hope that it will also offer some perspectives that are different from the usual approaches to self development. When I work with individuals or groups, I see that they are coming across ideas and experiences that are new to them, even those who have been in therapy, meditation practices, and so forth.
My intention is to create transformation. For individuals, that means moving from a life of emotional or physical pain, confusion, or dissatisfaction to one of deep meaning and joy. It means freeing oneself from who you think you are—or are supposed to be—and allowing your true self to generate your life. For us as a society, it means compassion, justice and peace. It means respecting the earth and each other. It means having the inner resources to live sanely.
Confession: I used to want to change the world and thought it would happen in my lifetime. I’m older and wiser now, but somehow I can’t give up that goal. Despite the horrors of human behavior that are in our news daily, there are also so many new understandings and so many people in so many arenas that are contributing to the good. Weaving these communities together (even if it’s only in my awareness) is what gives me hope.
Okay, here’s another confession: though I am an avid reader of science for the layperson, from cosmology to neuroscience, most of the deep truths I live by come from a mysterious place. It could be inside me, but most often it shows up when I’m walking in the woods. I can’t write an honest blog without including these spiritual connections to Something Larger. In my life, science and mysticism go hand in hand. That all started in eight grade when I found out what E=mc2 means. I’ll tell you that story some time…
Once a week, I will add content that will provide information, stimulate discussion, and invite you to practice something that is designed to get you grounded in your body so that you can consult your own deeper wisdom. This may be a writing prompt, an experiential exercise, a reading. If you want to subscribe to this as a weekly newsletter delivered to your email, please sign up below to subscribe to my email newsletter.
Today, these lines from Mary Oliver’s “The Summer Day”:
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
from New and Selected Poems, Beacon Press, Boston, 1992.