Dreaming and Moving
By Katarina Halm
Credit: Carol Lambert
'My Covid-19 Story' group inspired me to create a new series of movement explorations: we begin with a practice of two classical meridians. We trace these meridians then rotate an arm around its thumb and around its baby finger. The purpose is to refine and develop our self-image, our awareness of ourselves and potential for change. We work with Differentiation & Reintegration into the Self Image as developed by Moshé Feldenkrais.
When we know a little bit more our orientation in space and our orientation with respect to our heart and our sternum and our breathing, then we know where we are and we have a clearer choice about what we are going to do next.
Some people might remark, "Oh, my acupuncturist says I am supposed to squeeze a certain point when I have pain." That is fine in the realm offering remedies and self help. It is also of another realm (another model) than the refining of self-image.
With this project of refining our self-image, we can, for example, recognize the trajectory (imagined or felt) from the shoulder all the way down the side of the arm to the thumb. And another flow goes from under the armpit all along the baby finger side of the arm to the baby finger.
This gives a fuller awareness of the arm in space and our potential for movement. It also happens to clear the breathing, because one flow is the Lung meridian. Another flow happens to warm us because it is part of the heart meridian.
The easier breathing and warmth happen (occur) along with the self-image becoming more and more developed.
We could compare the process with a visual art. There are the artist's paints; the many pigments are displayed on the beautiful board. They put one and they put another and they put a layer and another layer and they make a sketch and then eventually there is the creation.
It is similar with the movement exploration. We practice the edges along either side of the arm. Then we and we might put our hands on our heart and develop lessons for that. Our self-image begins to grow and to become more refined. Our awareness tends to be more nuanced. We can detect smaller differences.
If rotating around the thumb, we rotate a little bit more letting the elbow drop, it becomes easier. We might begin with elbows raised up while rotating, then we can notice a discomfort, and it is only natural to let the elbow rest a bit ... even one hand can support the opposite elbow. One hand can support the other hand. And this hand could then be nicely cupped under our floating ribs.
So we have the basic movement. And we can even turn with it one way and the other way, then we rest in the middle. During that resting time you can rest any way you like, maybe even giving yourself a hug. As you rest the neurons and the brain start to absorb the learning.
Now you can be aware of that. Sometimes a longer rest. Sometimes less time for resting. Then when we are ready we might support that elbow again and do something very very simple, just turning around the axis of our spine. We could look to one side and to the middle and just see how it is. And to the other side and then look out the window or over towards a plant to look in the room.
There are so many variations that you can do, and I have offered just a very short example.
Perhaps you have questions? How does the dreaming tie into it? There might be some image when we dream and you can hold the image or feeling of the image. There might even be a nightmare. You hold it lightly and you look for something in the dream that is a little bit of help. Maybe there was a daisy growing in the grass or maybe the girl had a blue skirt. Something that you can hold in your heart. Perhaps you find the blue is represented from the skirt in a bottle holding a daisy by your computer.
Yes, the blue skirt in the bottle. And the daisy. Yes. Very very simple.
And the dream does not need to be explicitly exact. It can be held in its essence with a word, with a gesture, and it can be carried into your day.