Notes from my course in Bioenergetics

aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I'm starting this thread because I wanted to share some useful information I received two weeks ago on a weekend course in Bioenergetics, or body awareness as the teacher calls it. I asked permission to share his writings and theories and he had nothing against it. First some background information.

The teacher, Kari Paulus, is a Finnish 'body therapist' and Reiki practitioner. The Finnish forum members can read more on his website: _karipaulus.com (the information is only in Finnish). He was at an early age interested in esoteric matters, and started e.g. studying meditation techniques and different martial arts somewhere around the age of thirteen. I don't know his whole story, but at some stage he got interested in body therapies like Rolfing, Reichian(vegetotherapy) and Bioenergetics and studied these extensively e.g. in Germany. Later in the 80's he also studied Reiki and later on he travelled to Japan in his quest in finding the original Reiki principles and teachings (Usui Reiki Ryoho). In his treatment/therapy he doesn't combine "wildly" all these different techniques/philosophies, but chooses the "best" treatment according to the clients condition and wishes and also according to his own experience. I would say that he's a really down to earth guy who is very STO in character; no guru mentality here whatsoever. And as I've been his client I can say that his intuition and knowledge is extraordinary in my opinion.

The reason why I contacted him, in short, was that I felt that there was so much tension and trauma in my body, contracted mainly from my childhood with a narcissist/psychopath father, that couldn't just be released with traditional psychotherapy (which I've also tried). So, through some interesting synchronicity I found myself lying on his table. And from that moment on a new path of awareness slowly started to open...

So, I'm not going to bore you with any more details so I'll get right to it. On this first weekend (next "weekend class" will be in a month) we learned mainly some theoretical stuff. We learned about identifying character structures, according to Ida Rolf, A.Lowen and Kari Paulus himself. He has wrote this little information package which is a compilation of his studies and experiences with clients. I've, with his permission, translated his writings and will post them below. Since English is not my mother language there are probably many errors. All corrections are welcomed since I promised to give a copy of this to Kari. Translating the Finnish passive form is a bit problematic, at least for me, so I've used a lot of "her" and "she" in the text. It could as well be in the masculine form.

As Kari pointed out to me, these character structures as described below are only rough "archetypes" and shouldn't be considered as complete or "gospel" (no need to say that on this forum, eh?). While reading it is easy to get this feeling of: "Oh, hey I have all of these traits in me!" Well, Kari says that almost all of us have some amounts of every of these characters, but one is usually dominating. And once you've recognized and with hard work eliminated the dominating character (you probably never will be completely free form it) you will start to see the underlying "small" other characters. The descriptions are also summations, not every detail "fits" everyones persona of course.

I feel at this point that I should not describe the exercises and treatments we learned, since it could interfere and confuse the wonderful things that are going on with people doing the EE-program. But as I see it, learning these basic character structures (well these are of course just theories, but quite "accurate" in my opinion) will raise ones awareness - of one self and the people around you.

#Feel free to move this thread, wasn't sure were to put it!

edit: I wanted to add, that our group was also informed that reactions and traits according to ones character "appear" more clearly when faced with a critical or otherwise stressful situation. This knowing how to trigger different kind of persons is probably valuable information to those trying to manipulate us!
 

aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
1. Schizoid – the fragmented character structure

1. Schizoid – the fragmented character structure, foetal - 6months

Background:

At birth the hostility of the environment is experienced as a serious threat. As a consequence the child attempts to avoid and escape the situation by turning her head, limbs and skeleton away from the impending situation. Things that create threat in the child's mind are e.g. a failed attempt of abortion (being an unwanted child), immature parents, too little nourishment/food, too little genuine love, intimacy and touching, touching with double meanings (e.g holding the baby with “disgust”), parents quarreling and other loud noises. Very short times, even minutes of a threatening situation can feel very long to the baby, since she hasn't got a developed sense of time.

Body structure:

- A lot of disproportions in the structure of the body, skewness
- Absent look in the eyes
- Paleness (the blood is withdrawn at the intestines)
- Poor development of muscles (expressions and movements of joy are suppressed)
- The mechanicalness of the body movements (twitching and “angular” movements)
- A lot of tensions in the throat and neck (the schizoid has to control everything; everything is perceived as threatening and there's no trust in people)
- Massive tensions in all the big joints
- A sense of “nobody being home”, absent-minded
- Extremely strained and tense breathing (trying to control the breath)
- Can develop anorexia nervosa (the schizoid has “given up the right” to receive love and hence doesn't want to put in her body anything that is “nourishment”)

Psychology:

- Primary conflict: Isolation; if I express my need for intimacy and relatedness, my very existence is in danger. But since the schizoid
have these (suppressed) needs, she is not entitled to be here on this earth.
- Spiritually and mentally highly developed with very fast reasoning capability
- Adopts with ease different role models and styles (also trends, fashion)
- No connection to the ground (no grounding)
- Withdrawn
- Little need for food; eats only enough to stay alive
- High sensitiveness and “psychic powers/skills”. Often the feelings of being special and having “special psychic powers” are delusional.
Feels as she's living “between heaven and earth” and “doesn't belong here”.
- Inclined to use drugs or alcohol (the drugging of the mind gives at least one moment of “rest” and “peace”)
- Lives in her mind
- Doesn't trust others
- Afraid of agony and suffering (but most likely not aware of her inner suffering)
- Exercises only if forced to do so
- Gravitates towards work that can be done alone.
- Primary and constant underlying feeling: fear of disintegrating and dying

Important elements in treatment:

- Legs and feet; establish grounding
- All joints
- The therapist must absolutely be and behave as herself. Be sure not to use the "therapist voice" and intonation, since TRUST is everything with this character.
The client must be able to trust completely in the therapist
- Avoid too much talking, since the Schizoid will always "outsmart" you. She knows all "the science" and has a complete analysis of her condition. Talking will
lead you nowhere. The Schizoid needs to bypass her intellect and just experience
 

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aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
2. Oral – the collapsed character structure

2. Oral – the collapsed character structure, 0-18months

Background:

The time of infancy, after birth, is insecure and unprotected. The oral structure develops when the child's needs are not fulfilled. The environment doesn't seem intimidating enough to develop a downright fear of dying (cf. Schizoid). The Oral character feels a greater sense of having a right to live than the Schizoid. There are many unsatisfying elements and a lot of futile waiting in life, e.g. too much time spent alone, unsatisfying eating situations, a lot of crying alone, a lot of giving up, bad breastfeeding memories, no one around to comfort and hold in the lap. A strong sense of disappointment and longing.

Body structure:

- Collapsed shoulders and neck
- Face and eyes exhibit strong sense of longing
- The breath doesn't reach the upper part of the lungs
- Root of tongue locked
- Locked knees
- A “needy” mouth
- Feeble arms
- A lot of tension in the neck (not because of control, but because of collapsed structure)
- General appearance/impression is needy

Psychology:

- Doesn't recognize her own problems; the answers and causes are always to be found outside
- Searcher/seeker; everything good happens always somewhere else
- Expects always too much or too little, not very realistic [bipolar disorder?]
- Primary message: “Give to me!”
- Helplessness; gives up easily when faced with a crisis ("I will not succeed anyway") and lets others come up with solutions and actions
- Hedonist
- Smoker (a “needy” mouth)
- Vivid imagination and a daydreamer; has learned to entertain herself (often lonely as a child)
- Doesn't “stand on her own feet”; looks up to authorities
- Has a feeling of something missing. Always seeking for love, but gives up when getting close of finding it; gets a crush easily.
- Work: creativity, art, writing and ideas (lots of ideas but is shortsighted)
- Primary feeling: “I haven't got/received enough”
- The mode of crying is most often self-pitying sobbing
- Wants always feedback and recognition/credit for her actions

Important elements in treatment:

- The upper body: getting the breath all the way up – restoring the collapsed upper chest
- Relaxation of the knee joints
- Note: If treatment makes the client uncomfortable or nauseous (which it probably will), the client can feel disappointed due to unrealistic expectations of the
treatment (expectations of being “fixed up right away” or “feeling good”)
 

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aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
3. Psychopath – the controlling character structure

3. Psychopath – the controlling character structure, 18months – 3years
[By psychopath in this context he means characteropaths not born psychopaths]


Background:

After the oral phase the child's independence starts to grow and she becomes active and noisy. This is a new challenge for the parents as they try to get along. In some families the child is lured and tricked to behave in a certain manner and she is offered services or things in return for her submitting. This manipulation makes the child relinquish her own will. The child becomes a politician and she learns gradually to “trade” and in other ways to manipulate her parents. Teams consisting of mother/son, father/daughter can be formed. Power becomes more important than genuine emotions; expressions of feelings are suppressed and hidden (controlled). There can also be “double-communication” in the family; the parents don't support each others decisions and rules concerning the children (good guy/bad guy).

Body structure:

- A lot of energy in the upper body and chest; some air must always be maintained in the lungs (upper part) in order to feel strength and control
- Tensed diaphragm
- The chest is bilged and the shoulders are elevated
- Tense buttock muscles
- Thin legs
- Difficulties in exhaling; not allowed to give up!
- Angular movements of the pelvis
- Often broad shoulders (“malboro man/woman”)
- General appearance is blustering

Psychology:

- Primary message: competition, power and control, afraid of shame/loosing face
- Afraid of feeling small (not allowed to brawl as a child)
- Always in a hurry
- Has a lot of energy but burns eventually out; doesn't recognize signals of fatigue until it's too late (just keeps going!)
- Work: Leaders, politicians, athletes, teachers
- Great conflict between mind and emotions; power is always more important than feeling good – doesn't give any time to her self (resting/relaxing)
- Primary feeling: "If I'm helpless or weak the others will abuse me"

Important elements in treatment:

- Exhaling: collapsing of the chest; giving “permission” to let go and give up
- Relaxation of diaphragm and neck
- Directing energy into the pelvis

Other notes:

- The psychopath as a therapist is always telling a lot about herself. He is a “master” or “guru” and knows and manages everything. Guides and analyses too much
- As a client the psychopath wants to control everything that is done to her
- The psychopath is the idealized character of society today
 

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aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
4. Masochist – the compressed character structure

4. Masochist – the compressed character structure, 2,5years – 4years

Background:

Between the years 2,5 and 4 the child grows and strengthens. Her natural need for independence will make her defy her parents. All this is experimentation in order to make sure that she really is her own persona separated from her parents. The child enjoys tremendously when she is allowed to express her own opinions and also to object and protest (to say: no!). If this objection is destroyed completely the child gives up her own will and becomes kind, sweet and obedient. She will loose her own life force.

Body structure:

- The body appears to be compressed
- The space between the chest and pelvis is short
- Thick and chunky neck
- Tensions in both ends of the body
- Small hands and feet (the energy is concentrated in the torso)
- Staring eyes
- Often a strong color in the face
- The body is strong and grounded
- The area of expression (throat area) is also compressed

Psychology:

- Conceals problems by being positive; she's a “tree that has only positive branches”
- Primary message: “I have no right to object or protest”
- Secretly hates authorities; talks behind the back, gossip, text messages (SMS)
- Massive inner pressure, but since there's no channel for negativity the pressure cannot be discharged
- Loyal, effective and good worker (never complains)
- Primary feeling: Afraid of negative feelings
- She can't find or see any negativity in her self; seeks only positive “love and light” experiences

Important elements in treatment:

- Neck and throat
- Buttocks
- Simultaneous treatment of the small of the back and neck
- Encouraging to express negative feelings (letting out steam)
- The masochist can endure rough treatment
 

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aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
5. Hysteric – the rigid character structure,

5. Hysteric – the rigid character structure, 3,5years – 6,5years

Background:

The child has managed to evolve through the vulnerable years without contracting any serious damage. The energy of the child is strong and it flows freely. The child then starts to explore sexuality in herself and in others, but the environment is signaling to her that this is not acceptable (e.g. religious reasons). She is punished and at worst, she is forced to be the object of an exhibit (ridiculing e.g. her nakedness). Denying the child the natural need to explore sexuality, which she finds fascinating, forms a serious intrinsic conflict. A discontinuity will be formed at the waist (there "exists nothing" below the waist) and she will deny her sexuality as a natural emotion. With every religion we can find a model that chain man's sexuality. Also using the corset is a form of reinforcing the disconnection.

Body structure:

- A lot of energy at the pelvis; it is stockpiled and cannot discharge
- The pelvis is also stiff
- Bulged belly; hiding the area below the navel
- The pelvis is tilted forwards (see image)
- A lot of energy in the eyes and hands
- Strong feet and pelvis
- The upper body can in some cases look younger
- Rigid and elevated chest
- Very energetic quality of tissue [Don't know exactly what this means, have to check!]


Psychology:

- Primary message: “I cannot let go”
- Very formal pattern of behavior
- Doesn't act spontaneously (free sexuality would require “throwing oneself in”)
- Is afraid that people will contempt her if she feels or shows emotions
- Always controlled breathing; sexuality (arousing/acting) causes a change in breathing - that's "not allowed"
- Can be very aggressive and competitive
- Afraid of being touched; has difficulties in differentiating the meaning of the touch, there's probably a “hidden agenda”
- Primary feeling: “If I let go I will be laughed at and despised”
- Great difficulties with closeness and intimacy

Important elements in treatment:

- Relaxation of the diaphragm
- All forms and patterns of breathing
- The spontaneity of the therapist
- Yawning and sighing

###Text and all images by Kari Paulus, free translation by 'Aragorn' [my comments in brackets] - you are free to distribute this information with his permission.###
 

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Mrs.Tigersoap

The Living Force
This is a great summing up Aragorn, very useful! I use this in my practice and it always helps to give an insight into a person’s situation.

I had talked about it in a post about people and molds (http://www.cassiopaea.org/forum/index.php?topic=7082.msg49934#msg49934)
But it was just a few strokes, nothing as thorough as what you did.

Barbara Brennan wrote in “Hands of Light” and “Light Emerging” about these structures as well as Canadian Lise Bourbeau in “Les Cinq Blessures qui empêchent d’être soi-même”. They both see these structures as masks which are developed in order to hide a wound caused by the person in charge:

The mask of the schizoid also called Fleeing personality to hide the rejection wound with the parent of the same sex. Most likely to be in a coma (fleeing), have skin diseases (keeps people at bay), arythmia, etc.

The mask of oral also called co-dependant to hide the abandon wound with the parent of the opposite sex – I think this one is the most like the narcissistic wound. Most likely to develop rare diseases that attracts attention, back problems (feels he’s being taken advantage of).

The mask of the masochist to hide the humiliation wound caused by the parent/person in charge of the child’s development. Most likely to develop diseases linked to his weight problems.

The mask of the psychopath also called controlling to hide the betrayal wound from the parent of the opposite sex. Most likely to develop diseases ending in –ite (linked with anger), diseases linked with loss of control (spasmophilia, agoraphobia, etc.)

The mask of the hysteric also called rigid to hide the injustice wound caused by the parent of the same sex. Most likely to get burn-outs, sexual troubles, also diseases in –ite, etc.

Lise Bourbeau goes further and gives some “funny” examples of how each structure would react in a given situation. The main traits prove very often correct, in my experience, even they can be a bit caricatural:

About cars:

The schizoid will prefer a common, really banal, dark car
The oral will prefer a comfortable car, different from the norms
The masochist will prefer a small car – too small to accommodate him/her
The psychopath will prefer a powerful, noticeable car
The rigid wants an all-around car because he wants his money’s worth

About the way they sit:

The schizoid likes to sit with his feet under his buttocks so that, ungrounded, he can flee easily.
The oral needs to lean on the arms of the chair, cannot sit straight. The top of the body leans forward.
The masochist usually picks the chair which will be the least comfortable for him and so squirms in it all the time.
The psychopath, arms crossed on his chest, leans forward to convince you of what he says.
The hysteric sits perfectly straight. Keeps arms tight over chest, not to feel anything.


About the way they dance:


The schizoid doesn’t really like dancing. He doesn’t want to get noticed.
The oral likes to dance with someone, especially if he can press himself against the other person. He wants everybody to know “Look how my partner loves me”.
The masochist likes dancing. He wants everybody to know “Look how sensual I can be”.
The psychopath takes a lot of space and wants to seduce. He wants everybody to look at him.
The rigid is really careful not to miss the steps. He might take dance classes to make sure he does everything correctly. He wants everybody to see how well he can dance.


I think it’s interesting to see how little of our behaviour and tastes we actually control..
 

Buddy

The Living Force
Hi Aragorn. Thank you for this thread. Are there any "Important elements in treatment" for the Schizoid?
 

aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Buddy said:
Hi Aragorn. Thank you for this thread. Are there any "Important elements in treatment" for the Schizoid?

Thanks for pointing that out. Somehow I failed to put it there. Added it now.

We didn't yet learn much about the different treatment methods, but I'm sure we learn more in the future.
 

herondancer

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Hi Aragorn,

Thank you for posting this interesting information. I used to teach dance to adults, and I have strong recollections of each type. They can be discerned even when the person is of normal build, and fit to a remarkable degree. Interesting too, that the psychopathic stance seems very close to the "stand to attention" posture that military recruits are trained to adopt. More going on there than meets the eye?

Indulging in a little self-diagnosis, I would say I am close to the hysterical/rigid type. I had tons of energy when I was little, so my mom put me in ballet to 'wear me out" so I would sleep. I still have the strong hands and feet mentioned, and never developed a feminine shape. I was/am afraid of being laughed at, although this is way better than when I was young. Nor did I like being put on the spot or in a position I felt was 'undignified'. A strange attitude when one is five. A strong dose of catholicism didn't help matters either! Bodywork really helped me with getting out of those patterns, such as the stiff pelvis and controlled breathing. Being a man 1, it worked much faster than another sort of therapy might have. I did eventually get some regular therapy, but the bodywork laid a strong groundwork for it. I have many more programs to clear but it's a little easier when they aren't locked in your tissue. Heck, I took up bellydancing couple of years ago, which has to be the antithesis of hystericty (?? ;) )

I'm really looking forward to hearing how bioenergetics approaches treating these different types.

Herondancer

edited for clarity
 
G

Gertrudes

Guest
Aragorn and Mrs Tigersoap,

Thank you for such an informative thread!

As a Pilates Teacher observing people's postures is a fundamental part of the work, and what you have just written might be very useful for expandind my knowledge of getting a greater undersanding of exactly what's going on under the surface. I won't make from these words a gospel though ;)
After a while, you do start to see a few generic traits, but is is something for me still somewhat unconscious, my subconscious might know it but consciously I often feel I can't put my finger on it. From my experience when working with someone for a certain period of time, I will sometimes observe mild emotional changes. Reading about the Oral- Collapsed Character makes me think of a specific client with whom I have worked on "lifting her chest" and improving her breath, in what you've described as

Aragorn said:
- The upper body: getting the breath all the way up – restoring the collapsed upper chest
At the end of the first session of working with breath and improving posture in her collapsed chest, I clearly remember her mentioning that she felt very powerful. The change was also visible in her facial expression.
I am printing out the material you wrote and give it a thorough read.


What you have written reminds me also of the book: Emotional Anatomy by Stanley Keleman. Now, I have read it long ago but from what I remember he describes the emotional state history hidden in one's anatomy from the very first cell we are created from. He goes on to describe the process of growing organs, bones and muscles, and everything that constitutes a living human being, and connects this process of growing with our most basics impulses, such as reaching for something. He divides body postures into 4 main patterns of reaction to exterior aggression: the rigid structure, the dense structure, the bloated structure, and the collapsed structure. This is translated from Portuguese, so if you read the English version names might slightly vary.

Another lady that I think is worth mentioning is Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen. She researched and worked actively on patterns of movement. She created a method called Body Mind Centering, which basically is about: "Drawing from both Western and Eastern scientific knowledge, Body-Mind-Centering is an experiential study of the major body systems - skeletal, muscular, fluid, organ, neuro endocrine - and the evolutionary developmental patterns that underlie human movement." extracted from her book Sensing, Feeling, and Action It is a bit different from the material that you've posted and from "Emotional Anatomy" in that she mainly focuses on movement and patterns of movement to correct physical unbalances created by emotional trauma, shocks or accidents. In one of my favorite parts of this book, she presents us with photos of several people in casual postures of whom she does a quick emotional scan and links it with what is going on with the organs affected by that posture, due to either compression or extension. It is indeed a merge of east and west, since in the east it is considered that the state of our organs will manifest an emotional pattern.

It is a pity that with the tendency of endless specializing we often tend to forget the whole, and will find very smart people knowing a lot about a specific thing, but without the awareness of the whole of a human being. So we end up fixing one thing and often completely neglect the rest of the complex microcosms that constitutes us.


Mrs.Tigersoap said:
I think it's interesting to see how little of our behaviour and tastes we actually control..

Indeed.
 

aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Gertrudes said:
At the end of the first session of working with breath and improving posture in her collapsed chest, I clearly remember her mentioning that she felt very powerful. The change was also visible in her facial expression.
Very interesting! I believe that trying to "change" and "diffuse" ones emotional burden, as in body characters, is a very delicate matter and certainly takes a long time. This very question of "backengineering", trying to change ones character by physical correction (better/correct posture) was asked by one of our group. Our teacher Kari answered that this theoretically is possible, but the result would be only "theatrics"; the individual would take on a role as someone that she/he really isn't down to the core of her being. I hope I'm not dispiriting you here, I'm sure you're doing a wonderful job helping these people (I know for sure that I would need some Pilates after carrying around our son, now little over a year old!). But maybe a combination of 'body work'/bioneregetics/EE-program and phsysical training would be fruitful.

Gertrudes said:
What you have written reminds me also of the book: Emotional Anatomy by Stanley Keleman. Now, I have read it long ago but from what I remember he describes the emotional state history hidden in ones anatomy from the very first cell we are created from. He goes on to describe the process of growing organs, bones and muscles, and everything that constitutes a living human being, and connects this process of growing with our most basics impulses, such as reaching for something. He divides body postures into 4 main patterns of reaction to exterior aggression: the rigid structure, the dense structure, the bloated structure, and the collapsed structure. This is translated from Portuguese, so if you read the English version names might slightly vary.

Another lady that I think is worth mentioning is Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen. She researched and worked actively on patterns of movement. She created a method called Body Mind Centering, which basically is about: "Drawing from both Western and Eastern scientific knowledge, Body-Mind-Centering is an experiential study of the major body systems - skeletal, muscular, fluid, organ, neuro endocrine - and the evolutionary developmental patterns that underlie human movement." extracted from her book Sensing, Feeling, and Action It is a bit different from the material that you've posted and from "Emotional Anatomy" in that she mainly focuses on movement and patterns of movement to correct physical unbalances created by emotional trauma, shocks or accidents. In one of my favorite parts of this book, she presents us with photos of several people in casual postures of whom she does a quick emotional scan and links it with what is going on with the organs affected by that posture, due to either compression or extension. It is indeed a merge of east and west, since in the east it is considered that the state of our organs will manifest an emotional pattern.
Sounds like interesting books, I'll have to check those out! Apropos, some of the "basic" books in the subject of Bioneregetics and character structures in my understanding are:

Alexander Lowen: The language of the body
_http://www.amazon.com/Language-Body-Physical-Character-Structure/dp/0974373796/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1254121391&sr=8-7

Wilhelm Reich: Character Analysis
_http://www.amazon.com/Character-Analysis-Wilhelm-Reich/dp/0374509808/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1254121623&sr=1-4

I haven't got those myself yet, hope to read them soon.
 
G

Gertrudes

Guest
Aragorn said:
Very interesting! I believe that trying to "change" and "diffuse" ones emotional burden, as in body characters, is a very delicate matter and certainly takes a long time. This very question of "backengineering", trying to change ones character by physical correction (better/correct posture) was asked by one of our group. Our teacher Kari answered that this theoretically is possible, but the result would be only "theatrics"; the individual would take on a role as someone that she/he really isn't down to the core of her being. I hope I'm not dispiriting you here,

Not at all, I agree. I don't think the best way to approach an individual's personality traits would be through physical correction. I think it is interesting to notice though, the affects those changes have in a person's behaviour after a period of time, because they are sometimes observable. I can't really make any conclusions about such changes since I lack the knowledge to do so with my current skills being so directed to the physical body, for now I can only observe.

Still, physically re patterning habits will have a few manifestations and I think it fits the current topic sharing something from myself: I had suffered from years of lousy posture since I was 12 years old manifested in tremendous back pain. 11 years ago, I started to practice dance and several postural alignment and movement re patterning techniques. After 2 years I noticed that my self esteem had grown a little, and that my newly gained physical strength was projecting itself as mental strength. And the question arises, was it growth or was it theatrics? I remember Pepperfritz once mentioning that she had started a job of which she needed to interpret a role that she couldn't really feel herself in. I am sorry but I can't remember where the thread is the moment, but she concluded saying something that I interpreted as after playing a role for a while, you do start impersonating the role. I might be way off in my interpretation because it has been a while since I've read it.
After 11 years, I can say that some previous issues regarding lack of mental strength are slowly melting away, but that, of course, took 11 years. Some other aspects surely had an influence, but I do feel a strong relation to the training I undertook. The point being that a very slow and non invasive physical process might give the necessary time for the other parts that constitute the human being to adapt and respond accordingly to the adjustments. Maybe in the beginning there is a bit of theatrics, question is how will it turn out?

Now, my lower back for example, although immensely better is still my very weakness. A Reiki master once told me that I had deep emotional issues there. I think physical corrections are probably only able to sometimes scratch the surfface of something deep, manifesting subtle changes as they have in my case. And that no, we can't fix a person by abruptly changing his posture or physical behaviour, that can be dangerous and what we can get is some very nasty consequences.


Aragorn said:
But maybe a combination of 'body work'/bioneregetics/EE-program and physical training would be fruitful.
I think so as well, the only thing I would add is diet. That would be a way of working an individual in all its aspects.


Aragorn said:
Sounds like interesting books, I'll have to check those out! Apropos, some of the "basic" books in the subject of Bioneregetics and character structures in my understanding are:

Alexander Lowen: The language of the body
_http://www.amazon.com/Language-Body-Physical-Character-Structure/dp/0974373796/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1254121391&sr=8-7

Wilhelm Reich: Character Analysis
_http://www.amazon.com/Character-Analysis-Wilhelm-Reich/dp/0374509808/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1254121623&sr=1-4

I haven't got those myself yet, hope to read them soon.

Thank you for the suggestions! There is still no review or synopsis at amazon for the first one, but the second one sounds very intersting indeed!
I've searched on the net about bioenergetics and its approach, and am thinking of giving it a try myself. I have been working on the physical body for a while now and I feel that I have a big gap regarding emotional and mental health, would really welcome something to fill the growing gap!
 

aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Gertrudes said:
Not at all, I agree. I don't think the best way to approach an individual's personality traits would be through physical correction. I think it is interesting to notice though, the affects those changes have in a person's behaviour after a period of time, because they are sometimes observable. I can't really make any conclusions about such changes since I lack the knowledge to do so with my current skills being so directed to the physical body, for now I can only observe.

Still, physically re patterning habits will have a few manifestations and I think it fits the current topic sharing something from myself: I had suffered from years of lousy posture since I was 12 years old manifested in tremendous back pain. 11 years ago, I started to practice dance and several postural alignment and movement re patterning techniques. After 2 years I noticed that my self esteem had grown a little, and that my newly gained physical strength was projecting itself as mental strength. And the question arises, was it growth or was it theatrics? I remember Pepperfritz once mentioning that she had started a job of which she needed to interpret a role that she couldn't really feel herself in. I am sorry but I can't remember where the thread is the moment, but she concluded saying something that I interpreted as after playing a role for a while, you do start impersonating the role. I might be way off in my interpretation because it has been a while since I've read it.
After 11 years, I can say that some previous issues regarding lack of mental strength are slowly melting away, but that, of course, took 11 years. Some other aspects surely had an influence, but I do feel a strong relation to the training I undertook. The point being that a very slow and non invasive physical process might give the necessary time for the other parts that constitute the human being to adapt and respond accordingly to the adjustments. Maybe in the beginning there is a bit of theatrics, question is how will it turn out?

Now, my lower back for example, although immensely better is still my very weakness. A Reiki master once told me that I had deep emotional issues there. I think physical corrections are probably only able to sometimes scratch the surfface of something deep, manifesting subtle changes as they have in my case. And that no, we can't fix a person by abruptly changing his posture or physical behaviour, that can be dangerous and what we can get is some very nasty consequences.
Yes, very true I believe. Ca 10 years ago I had this quite serious back injury that ultimately led me to see a osteopath. While it's true that he "saved" my back (I didn't seek help with it until over a year had passed; the lower part of my back was completely stiff and "unbendable") the treatment had quite dramatic psychological effects. I saw this guy a few times a month regularly for almost a year - having him "crank", "bend" and open up my spine. A few months after starting the treatment I started developing a serious depression and anxiety. It was like all these monsters from my past washed over me too fast, I was completely unprepared for this. I didn't understand the connection at the time, and the following year was very hard and depressing-I literally felt the sky was falling. It's only in retrospect I've come to understand that this violent treatment of the spine just was too much for the psyche to handle.

BTW, since I relate strongly to the description of the Oral character (my body is like a spitting image of the example!) I've thought a lot about the treatment methods my therapist has used on me. I just want to say that while a big part of the treatment lies in "getting away from the collapsed chest" and "getting the breath up", the end product is not supposed to be that one breathes heavily in the upper part. The upper part breathing in the therapy session is only to "stretch" and trying "reconstruct" the tissues and muscle composition, and of course to get to the underlying suppressed trauma/emotion that originally "crooked" the body - not to force to change the every day breathing pattern.

In my own case I've just recently discovered, that the main muscle that keeps my upper chest collapsed, and also as a consequence my upper back and my neck bent forward, is the massive, massive tensions in THE DIAPHRAGM. My tensed diaphragm just pulls down and compresses the upper body into this collapsed posture. And to diffuse this a have a lot of sad emotions, suppressed fear and crying to do. No wonder singing for me at times feels like a struggle (the diaphragm being the most important "muscle" in classical singing, IMO)
 
G

Gertrudes

Guest
Aragorn said:
Yes, very true I believe. Ca 10 years ago I had this quite serious back injury that ultimately led me to see a osteopath. While it's true that he "saved" my back (I didn't seek help with it until over a yer had passed; the lover part of my back was completely stiff and "unbendable") the treatment had quite dramatic psychological effects. I saw this guy a few times a month regularly for almost a year - having him "crank", "bend" and open up my spine. A few months in the treatment I started developing a serious depression and anxiety. It was like all these monsters from my past washed over me too fast, I was completely unprepared for this. I didn't understand the connection at the time, and the following year was very hard and depressing-I literally felt the sky was falling. It's only in retrospect I've come to understand that this violent treatment of the spine just was too much for the psyche to handle.

Aragorn, I am truly sorry to hear that. One thing that I find very important is that unless in very extreme cases such as accidents where surgery might be needed changes, specially to the spine should be handled with extreme care! In old physiotherapy and osteopathy school, forceful bending and contortion of the body to "fix" it was the way to go. Unfortunately, it is still practiced by some. From what you have described it seems that was the treatment given to you.
Once when talking to an osteopath friend, he stressed the dangers of old school osteopathy where the body and the psyche is completely unprepared for such a sudden change. Those treatments can indeed be extremely violent because the body is forced, not changed very, very gradually.
The problem being, not only you are not mentally or emotionally prepared for such a sudden change, but there will be no muscular support to hold the spine (or whichever part the therapist might be working on) in the new place into which it has forcebully being put, so collapse and eventually pain will be the result. That is why often people leave a session feeling better (don't know if it was the case with you) and the next day they are crying out in pain.

Aragorn said:
BTW, since I relate strongly to the description of the Oral character (my body is like a spitting image of the example!) I've thought a lot about the treatment methods my therapist has used on me. I just want to say that while a big part of the treatment lies in "getting away from the collapsed chest" and "getting the breath up", the end product is not supposed to be that one breathes heavily in the upper part. The upper part breathing in the therapy session is only to "stretch" and "reconstruct" the tissues and muscle composition - not to force to change the every day breathing pattern.

In my own case I've just recently discovered, that the main muscle that keeps my upper chest collapsed, and also as a consequence my upper back and my neck bent forward, is the massive, massive tensions in THE DIAPHRAGM. My tensed diaphragm just pulls down and compresses the upper body into this collapsed posture. And to diffuse this a have a lot of sad emotions, suppressed fear and crying to do. No wonder singing for me at times feels like a struggle (the diaphragm being the most important "muscle" in classical singing, IMO)

That makes a lot of sense. Eíriú-Eolas should work as a god cleansing tool for you, OSIT

Strictly from a structural point of view, where changes are achieved through correcting muscular unbalances, I know how I would approach it. Therefore I find fascinating and am very curious on how to deal with the structural aspects departing from an energetic, emotional or psychological perspective. I am inclined to think those to be the origin of most musculoskeletal structural imbalances. I might be wrong but from what I have read bioenergetics follows this latter path.

I look forward to hearing any updates on your sessions.
 
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