Somatic Learning in Action: Centering, Declaring, Entering

momentum, flow

Through practice, we build our capacity to move toward what we deeply care about. Richard Strozzi-Heckler says: “We are what we practice, and we’re always practicing something.” So, why not have conscious practices that create change in us? Building awareness about what we are practicing and how this affects how we live our lives helps us to make choices that are more generative. We practice to become more alive to what pulses in us as the heart of what matters.

When we practice with others, in community, the learning takes place in what I have often called a cauldron. There’s a bubbling to the surface that can occur when practicing in the presence of others — a way into seeing ourselves that is otherwise invisible. By learning in community and taking the time to tease apart the practices, participants can deepen in their understanding of the practices themselves and, more importantly, the relevance of practice

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Creating a Practice that Works

In the last post I talked about a practice that I am engaged in at present for my own development.  It is a very particular practice that arises out of my two decades’ worth of training in the martial art aikido as well as my work as a somatic coach.  I am hoping that seeing the practice in the video inspired you, but another thought I had about this is that it might have made you feel a bit intimidated.  Or maybe that the practice isn’t something you would choose to do yourself.  Or maybe it seemed to be too hard to learn.  Or perhaps you didn’t see the relevance.  (Or maybe you’ve all purchased wooden swords and are voraciously making up your own forms!)

All these pieces are crucial in designing a practice that works.  The practice needs to be right for you.  It needs to engage you for your own reasons.  And of

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The Embodied Creative: Voice & Body

As a poet I have always been interested in language’s energetic components, how we can get in the way of the energy of a poem and how when we step aside the poem can sometimes write itself. OK, so that’s rare. But it happens. So what is present in us and in language when grace happens?

In 2006 I began a course of study in somatics at Strozzi Institute that was a natural outgrowth of my many years of training in the martial art aikido and my many years of expressing myself through the language-medium of poetry. I’m fascinated with the relationship between how we live in our bodies and what we bring forward in our voices and our expression in the world. I wanted to understand in a more conscious way that remarkable relationship between body-knowing and intellectual knowing.

I will never forget the day I felt in my own body that my writing

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