Friday, December 31, 2010

first posting on new blog, Waking 108

I'm going to come up with 108 ways to wake more fully to life. I have done this before, but it's the first of the year, and new place, new love, a vision of myself as providing some things of immense value to others.

The new blog will alternate moving, thinking, feeling/ emotions, and soul. 
It is at
this blog doesn't exist any more
and it's "baby"
is lanquishing,
 the book,
the Old book
and the only 108 day/ way
book there will be for awhile, is just fine

it's great, in my opinion,
buy it and change your life
if you are so
in the

Here's the first entry, a movement lesson you may have all done. Good. Do it again before you meditate or every 20 minutes at the computer, if you wish.

1. Find a firm chair or bench or log or rock where you can sit with both feet on the ground and your hips are slightly higher than your knees.

2. Come to the front of the chair, so your spine holds up your head and you aren't leaning back on anything.

3. Feel what this is like if you sit more or less upright.
    a. Feel how your pelvis sits on the chair.
    b. Feel how your spine rises up out of your pelvis
    c. Feel how your head is held up by your spine.
    d. Notice your shoulder blades, and how they rest on the ribs of your back.
    e. Feel both arms and both legs and your spine all at once.

4. Sit for a few minutes as if this is your meditation: noticing and sensing your arms and legs and spine. Find a certain peace and clarity in this.

5. Rest by leaning back, or walking, or just wiggling very slightly.

6. Sit forward again, and begin to round yourself into a ball as you sit in the chair.
    a. Let your head roll down and toward your chest.
    b. Let your sternum sink in and go down and backwards.
    c. Bring your belly in and backwards.
    d. Let your eyes come come toward looking at your belly button.
    e. Rock back on your pelvis, so that you are tucking your tail bone in a little and as if bring your sex toward your face.
     f. Undo all this and come to "upright," but no more.
     g. Then round down again, feeling each time a little more ease and awareness of all the parts of this.
     h. Begin to be aware and in enjoyment on the unfurl back to upright part, too.
     i. Do this many times, each time finding something new, and something more releasing or interesting or both.

7. Rest again. Sit in the meditation of 2 arms and 2 legs and 1 spine and just BE for a while.

8. Come to the front of the chair, and put your hands on the sides on your face, with your fingers pointing backwards, thumbs below the ears, fingers above. In this position, very slowly and easily begin to opposite of the movement in #6.
     a. Push your belly forward.
     b. Arch your back.
     c. Look up with your nose and eyes and the arms connected to your head.
     d. Roll forward to the front of your pelvis, as if you want to show off your rear end to someone behind you.
     e. Don't go too far, or "to your limit." Make it easy and enjoyable and about learning. Feel as many ribs and vertebrae as you can.
     f. In this movement, the sternum lifts and comes a bit forward. (The shoulders are soft ant easy. No "throwing the shoulders back" nonsense. This is about waking up to our spines, a central line to our lives).
      g. Come back to "upright" from this, but go no farther.
       h. Do this many times, each time concentrating and learning about a different part.

9. Rest in walking or sitting. Sense both legs, both arms and your spine. Feel if you are taller and more at ease.

10. Come to the front of your chair. Put your hands on your face and head as in #8. Now combine #6 and #8. Roll forward into a curled in ball, and arch up into a looking up person. Do not, do not, do not bring your neck back "too far." Just have your nose tilting up easily in a way the it feels as if your neck's curve is a continuation of your spine's curve.
    a. Go back and forth from belly in and rolling back on your pelvis, to belly out and rocking forward on your pelvis.
    b. Feel each vertebrae.
    c. Feel all the ribs.
    d. Feel the sternum moving up and forward and then down and in.
    e. Begin to sense your neck as part of your spine, not separate from it.



11. Do the #10 again, rounding and arching and as you make and aware this movement notice differences between the folding part and the unfolding part:
    a. in the ribs
    b. the spine
    c. the sternum
    d. the pelvis
    e. the head
    f. your breathing
    g. your eyes

12. Rest.

13. Now do folding and arching, almost like #10 and #11, but don't put your hands on your face and head. Notice the difference in how your head relates to your back without your hands on your head.
    a. then go back and forth, hands on face to round and arch, and hands off
    b. pay amused and delighted attention how one way connects up the movement of your head with the arching and rounding in your back.

14. Rest.

15. Now, do the movement of #10 with this added complexity:
    a. Notice what your eyes are doing as you arch and lifted your head and round and tuck your head in
    b. Deliberately move your eyes (open or closed, try both for more differences to experience) down as your head goes down and up as your head goes up
    c. Now, try this, and go very slowly, and do just a little bit: but as your head goes down with rounding, have your eyes move to look up, as if at your forehead, and as your head (connected by hands to your back), lifts in the arching toward up, move your eyes slowly, slowly and gently down.
    d. Do this many times. Take rests. Make the up and down of your head very small if you get wozzy or confused. Just notice the new difference: head up and eyes down, head down and eyes up.
    e. See if you can become calm enough in this to begin to sense your spine and ribs and sternum and breathing and pelvis again, while still moving your head and eyes in opposition.

16. Rest.

17. Imagine doing #10 with the eyes in the same direction at your head. Don't DO anything. Just imagine.
    a. Then do the movement once, and notice what wasn't available in imagination
    b. Imagine it again, more fully.
    c. Do it in reality.
    d. Back and forth like this as long as you are curious and learning and in ease.

18. Rest in sitting in the 5 line meditation, and then rock forward onto your feet and feel the length of yourself in standing. Walk around and stay in the awareness mode for as long as you can. Notice the arms hanging from the spine and the legs holding up the pelvis and the pelvis holding up the head.

19. Enjoy being you today.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

resolutions, 1

people like to make resolutions at the end of the year

this is the end of the year

the calender makes some sense in the seasons and that life moves forward

and what dreams and aims and goals do we want to move toward this year?

Moshe Feldenkrais talked about real health as
1. bouncing back from trauma
2. making real your vowed and unavowed dreams

and his method, and the way Anat has carried it on
is about this:
teaching us that small and aware steps
taken almost for the joy of the process of taking
the steps
can lead to huge changes

in the so-called "body"
and in our "thinking"
and in
our lives

so, what's next for us this year?

let's have some big dreams
and tomorrow
and Saturday

let's take three days
to play
with the big and small and fantastical and practical dreams

and then let's play
and explore
and discover the pleasure in
taking action
these dreams

is that a good plan?

who knows,
and you don't need a plan,
and an idea
can be a glider to soar
on for a little while

and it's the dark time of the year
the go within time
and the party party time
and the drink too much time
or the meditate and get clear time

and time is fictional mainly
outside of the sunrise noon sunset
and fall winter spring summer

and it's time
to come
back to the now

for me

and for you?
your call.
where does you laughter and love and  curiosity
and wishing for your dreams
call you


Friday, December 24, 2010

the computer... as i sit here on a gray today, is waking in the game plan?

So i sit here typing

la, la

usually this is fingers doing
what fingers have been trained to do

but something holds up those fingers
let's call it a hand

let's hand it to the hand
knowing how to do handy things

like type

but what holds up the hands

well the table actually

and what holds up the things the hand
are connected to
called arms

the part called the shoulder

and what holds that up


the cat's out of the bag:
we have a spine

and what holds the spine up?


we do

and the chair under my rear
the chair that is tilted forward on its two front legs

so my legs
and its legs make a four legged creature
with my spine coming up off this
and then the shoulder area
and the arm things and
the hand things
and the fingers

so could i create variation
that would help my spine
realize its "spineness" more?


i can round, and the chair has a shift for that one

i can arch, and the chair shifts the other way

this has to be too boring to read unless you are playing
in your own chair hands eyes spine

and side bending
the tilting tower way
and the curving like a C and a backwards C way

those do a lot for a spine at a computer

and we haven't even come to twists

but i could twist my shoulders to the right
and head to the left
and keep my eyes on the computer

and do that yoga still
push push look at me go

or internal learning
let me love and learn about me style

you could play with that if you want

a kind of pre Christmas present to yourself today

as you talk, walk, sit, dance, shop
what are you doing?

what shifts
unknown to anyone but you
could you make

that would make all the difference
in your awakeness???

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

tai chi and life potency

Or: the joy of two arms
two legs
a smile
a spine
a pelvis
ten toes
ten fingers
a belly
two eyes
two ears

On November 22, 2008, I  wrote, and had some nice pictures
of going through the tai chi form
as a series of tucking in, coiling and rounding
as a pulling in and getting ready to strike

arching the back, pressing from the ground through the
lengthened spine,

Here's the link: Tuck and Coil, then Unfurl and Strike

So what more is there to say?

Tai Chi is fun.

I have another essay on why Tai Chi is grand for you,
with the usual suspects:
going slow,
connecting to yourself,
finding and knowing the use of all four limbs in space,
use of the pelvis,
use of the spine

And here I must interject that tai chi,
like yoga,
is often taught as rigidity
in the sense of demanding a "tucked in" pelvis,
which requires a tightening of the abdomen muscles
which feels like "strength"
and isn't

its a tightness that prevent injury
sort of
by preventing any movement

but, the minor problem
preventing movement
is preventing life

(he says, rigidly sitting at a chair
typing into his computer,
is funny:

and hey you: reading at this computer,
get up now
and do a little tai chi
make it up

any position will do,
just know where your arms and legs are
and then have an idea of the next position of your arms
and legs
and move there

tai chi is fancy walking
it's always shifting
from right to left to right foot

you and me and all of us and
play the tai chi



this is life: moving the legs,
moving the arms

and life is nothing
without being awake

and this is the real trick in standard tai chi
with its obsession with the form

perfection is death in a way
getting better and better and better
even by taking the detour of making it worse for awhile
is life

so how to be awake in tai chi:
feel the power from feet to finger tips in each

feel the coiling in
and preparing for power in each transition

feel the softness in the power
feel the power in the softness

this could be mumbo jumbo
could be a lot of fun

shut down your computer and do tai chi
or pretend tai chi
for the next half an hour

treat it all as a breathing
and skeletal awareness meditation
be aware of everything you see
and hear
as you do
all this


and maybe this as the final treat

breathe in,
get ready

breathe out
push out belly
push into ground and hands

brush knee this is called,
one hand pushes forward
one by the other knee

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

the gift of now

maybe I've said this before
oh well

here goes again

to be present
is to be free to go
in any direction

so much of so-called body work
is like this:
"worker" (in and of itself a strong clue about
why "body work" doesn't really respect the whole person)
looks for something that needs to be "worked on"
in the "client"

then, they work away:
and people love it

at least someone is paying attention to them
touching them
waking them up to their skin and flesh and muscles and all
that stuff


and to be present
is this:

put a hand somewhere on the student's body,
with the idea of touching
touching the whole self

make a small movement
and feel
and watch
and notice
what happens

this is a welcome to
who the other person is

the brain is organized around
around movement

how is this person organized

what small little bits
in the present
could be added
to their

listen to their responses
go slow
be present

feel what's going on in

this advice

could work for
a practitioner
for a lover
for a parent of a restless child
for a parent of a special needs child

for any friend of a special

which is to say:

and guess what,
is a certain way:
we can go inside
and listen to ourselves
this way


Monday, December 20, 2010

What about Rest? Food for life in the un-doing?

I have been almost two hours on the internet doing various stuff
with my other blog, Slow Sonoma dot com
and my over website,
Waking Up for Life dot com, or 4 Brain Fitness dot com

I've enjoyed this
and enough is enough

AND I want to get something up on this blog,
which I'm going to call:
Life Potency

because I'm tired of the name Wake Up Feldenkrais
(after all the guy is dead, why should he wake up,
and the Feldenkrais movement is either evolving or
not evolving, depending,
in my opinion,
on whether people are developing new lessons based in function
and potency,
or are engaged in various water down schemes to get the work
more toward "energy"
or "release"
or even "healing," in the old, meaning,
not Moshe's meaning of health as getting the umph and potency for
forge ahead on your vowed and unavowed dreams).

new name
and the title to this essay was supposed to be about rest and un-doing.

Well, maybe I am undoing the name of the site
even though I was going to write about how important
and non doing is.

What the hell.

Let's all do about twenty minutes of nothing now.
Lie down on our firm tables or the floor and take a nap,
or meditate,
or make up a little movement lesson for ourselves.

Maybe that will create an interesting shift in
our lives,
or just recharge us.


Have fun in nothing/ slow land.


Friday, December 17, 2010

the mask as how to fit in society: from Preface to Awareness Through Movement

From Awareness Through Movement, by Moshe Feldenkrais.

Page 4: “The essential flaw of education as we know it today is that it is based on ancient and often primitive practices whose equalizing purpose was neither conscious nor clear.”

Page 6: “The education provided by society operates in two directions at once.

It suppresses every nonconformist tendency through penalties of withdrawal of support
And simultaneously imbues the individual with values that force him to overcome and discard spontaneous desires.

These conditions cause the majority of adults today to live behind a mask, a mask of personality that the individual tries to present to others and to himself.

Every aspiration and spontaneous desire is subjected to stringent internal criticism lest they reveal the individual’s organic nature.

Such aspirations and desires arouse anxiety and remorse and the individual seeks to suppress the urge to realize them.

The only compensation that makes life durable despite these sacrifices in the satisfaction derived from society’s recognition of the individual who achieves its definition of success.


Repeated success is essential to encourage the individual to persist in this masquerade.”

(Separation of sentences into individual paragraphs, and capitalization via me, Chris Elms. In the book, this is all one paragraph and sentences are capitalized the usual way, but none is all caps the way I made THE NEED FOR CONSTANT SUPPORT….)

Page 7:
“The great majority of people live active and satisfactory enough lives behind their masks to enable them to stifle more or less painlessly any emptiness they may feel whenever they stop and listen to their heart.”

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Possibilities of really deepening the work: Anat Baniel Method

The below in response to a grumpy
review of Anat from afar on FeldyForum:

I've just finished my 209 th day of studying with Anat. A few of those days are three day
workshops but mainly it was as the 9 day segments she teaches, the first ten constituting what she
calls the Basic Training, after which one can charge for FS, her term for FI, and then 4 segments on 
special needs children,
and two on vitality and anti-aging
and one on high performers.

Her aim in each 9 day segment is
to exceed the last segment and create
a transformative experience for the life
of every student in that segment.

She succeeds.

I took all her training after completing the Feldenkrais training.
In retrospect I consider the Feldenkrais training a marvelous education.
I consider Anat's work, a transformational training that sends pretty much
every one out in the world ready to give powerful and effective lessons.

She talked of her China trip in her most recent training and a transcript of this will
be on her blog.
Her work was powerful enough to have the Chinese government
itself rethinking its policies towards all the orphan's in China.
She went there because the woman who started and runs
Half the Sky ( )was in one of Anat's workshops and asked:
would you like to come to China, I have a program that is aimed
to help 50,000 orphan's in China.
That got Anat's interest.

Anat's book is co written with someone who wants it accessible to 
anyone eighth grade education . They argue a lot as he wants it more watered,
she less.
If anyone wants a beginning flavor of her power as a teacher,
I'd recommend one of the DVD's of her full weekend workshops,
the Back Weekend, the Vitality and Anti-Aging weekend. Neck weekend,
or most potent probably, the weekend with parents and those who work with
Special Needs children.

She also has a training starting in March, and
even going to one nine day segment could
be life changing.

Sounds dramatic.
Maybe it's true.

I thought it would be a la de da
review and the first nine days has a depth of third or
fourth year in the F training.
By segment 7 or 8 and you are getting training that
might often be an advanced training in the F world.

My son was going to just play along and check it out
for one segment.
16 segments later he is changing the lives of 2 special needs children
in Los Angeles on top of three other jobs.

Call me if you'd like to talk about taking her training,
even at her prices, which are being worked down.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

pain is....

pain is a

and a signal:
get out of here
don't do this again
get your shit together
stop doing this with so little skill grace humor and awareness

something like
a freind
in disguise


Sunday, December 05, 2010

Ear ing and Hearing and Attention and Music and Memory, Yes

Try this sitting, lying down and standing.

Imagine some music: I started with Dream, Dream, Dream, the old Paul Anka song, and then used the Beatles and then some Mahler. You pick the music.

Look straight ahead and imagine this music in your left ear. Enjoy it as richly as you can there. While doing this sense your five lines: two arms, two legs and spine. Breathe. Hear the music in your left ear.

Now begin to slowly turn your head to the right, so that your ear seems to leave the music slightly outside of it and to the left. Play with this a bit, going to the right and back to the middle with your nose as the music goes from inside your left ear to slightly outside.

Sensing all of you.

Now, play with rotating your head, slowly of course, to the left so that the music comes into the middle and then to the right ear and eventually all the way outside your right ear.

Do this in bits, as well as a flow.
Which means: sometimes have the music flow from left ear to the middle to right ear to outside as a steady shift. Sometimes play with the interval of music in the middle and music in the right ear, say, or any of the possible combinations.


Now, do this all again, noticing what you are seeing outside yourself in the world as you head shifts one way and the music appears to shift the other.

Now alternate your eyes, so as you head turns to the right and the music shifts to the left, your eyes look to the left, too, as if following the music.


Now play with the music as moving rather than your head, and follow the music as it passes left and right, with these combinations: left ear and right eye, and right ear and left eye.


Then have the music shifting, but outside of you and in front, rather than as we’ve been doing from straight to the side and through your head.

Imagine the music shifting right to left and back, slowly, and watch and listen to this shifting music with all the possible combinations:

Left eye and right ear.
Left eye and left ear.

Right eye and left ear.
Right eye and right ear.

Just sit, maybe with a big fat smile on your face imagining how much fun you are going to have today exploring this in the “real world.”

Love yourself as you learn.


Friday, December 03, 2010

Don't be good, be warm wet alive in the body that is you when you are present

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting--
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

beyond the abs: what a real brain wants: a pelvis that goes all ways (think sex, think bringing an axe up and down, think throwing a baseball, serving a tennis serve)

Sexy old man who is using his

Okay sweet readers. This is for all and everyone one of us,
sucked conned, lured, or just excited about doing the stomach strengthening thing
to "help" our backs.

Well, think about what a "back" is:
a collection of muscles and fibers going every which way
and twenty four vertebrae that can rotate and side bend and round forward and arch with the belly forward

In the abs world, the strange idea of "core" as only training the back to round, so that the nose comes closer to the crotch, as in sit ups, or leg lifts, tightening the stomach, tuck in your gut, all that stuff

Well: it kind of works;
tighten the stomach enough and the back is held rigid and so
you are sort of out of back trouble
with the minor price:

and the major price:
inability to move in all the other directions well and easily
and with grace and power

So, actually, lots of sit ups,
lots of leg lifts,
feels "strong" and it has the same sort of dumb strength
that you could compare,
say, the United States foreign policy

or most male response to trouble:
get strong,
do something intense
confuse effort with intelligence or ability

what else to do?

Go all ways:


Like this:

1. Lie on your back and go to the lesson before this,
and do all the scans that are mentioned

2. Really, scroll on down to the earlier lesson today and do that part,
it will change your life.

3. Put both hands on the floor above your head.

Lift the right leg at the hip joint, many times, much less than the full thing. Learn something.
learn a lot and find pleasure.


Lift the right leg again, now many times with the left arm coming up from the floor at the same time.
again, less than the "limit" with tons more awareness pleasure and learning than any "exercise" you've ever done.


Lift the right leg, now with the right arm, just 3 times and then alternate, 3 right arm with right leg, 3 left arm. NOTICE THE DIFFERENCE.


4. Do all this with the left leg.


5. Roll over on your belly, arms high above head on the floor.

Do all the above combinations on the belly.

Feel these muscles, the back muscles, the anti-gravity muscles, the muscles that hold up your head, and start the tennis serve and raise the axe or hammer or withdraw the pelvis in sex.

This is what special needs kids all need.

This is what almost all high performers need.

Almost all athletes really, really need this.

Go slow. Find the pleasure, awareness, delight and learning something new with each movement.


If you must do both legs on the back, trading off left, right and both arms,

and then, on the belly, same.


7. Don't do it yet, but realize, this can be done on your side, except just with the top arm and leg.
Imagine this on your side.

Do this one side.


Roll to the other side. Lift the leg with the arm, without the arm. Feel what the so called "back" is doing.

8. Rest
and feel what it's like to have a spine that's not only stronger, but way, way smarter than 20 or 30 minutes ago.

9. get up and walk. bring awareness of arching and rounding and side bending in your back to this most basic and amazing human function: the walk. love notice and exult in having a real back with a real "core" and that core is your awareness.

Your awareness each step of your life.

10. We haven't used the spine in rotation. Lots of movement lessons are about that. Hit the movement lesson label below and then search for rotation if you want.

11. P.S. If you want to just "do" the front muscles, try this lesson,
from last March, it's even got pictures: A folding lesson on the back

a lesson for hearing, learning, living and enlightenment

What are these dancers hearing
from which ear are they

Life is a dance.
Let's learn as we do so.

You know, sweet readers and learners,
long long ago, we all of us needed to survive in conditions
where hearing was of life and death importance.

In particular, hearing what was above and below and
us, made a difference between surviving and being someone else's

And now we hardly even notice whether a sound is coming
from the right or the left,
and rarely play with/ learn about using one ear
and the other
and discovering their personalities, you know,
like strong points and weak points, habits, all that.

So, let's start.

1. Ye olde body scan:
Lie down on the floor
Notice the first difference: what is the difference between being horizontal and supported and living in the upright world

Noticing differences is the fundamental unit of intelligence

Learning is what separates humans from the rest

Rest assured, that if you lie down a couple of times a day and
just do that:
notice the differences, more and more in detail,
you will change your life.

2. Scan the parts, the biodiversity of you:
start with the right leg: toes to the hip joint, sense it all
next right hand, finger tips, each and all, to the shoulder blade, which is not the top of the upper arm, and how big is the shoulder blade, and what is it like to sense from five finger tips to the shoulder blade

fill in the rest: left arm, shoulder blade down
left leg, left hip joint down





all of you

3. Good

Now notice the difference: who and how are you after indulging/ gifting yourself with the time and attention to come back home to yourself in the horizontal out of gravity world?

And where is gravity, even though you are horizontal, can you feel yourself as one big foot?

4. Now, slowly turn your head right and left.
and what?

Notice differences

Always slowly, always less than the limit, always looking for pleasure, always making each movement new from the last, always being open to connections with other "parts" than the moving "part"

5. Rest.
What's the difference having done some heading home to the top?

6. Now, just turn your head slowly to the left.
and back to the middle.
many times.


Now turn many times to that side and back just to the middle with the nose and takes your right hearing and turn it the same way as your head.

Imagine, the ear, the right ear is listening first to the left as your head turns that way
back to the middle as your head returns to the middle.

Go very slowly.
See if that ear, your right ear can tune to the left and then back to the middle.
Fake it till you make it. Imagine. Hone in. Discover.
Learning to learn is the game of transforming our lives.


6. Turn your head slowly left and to middle without any ear stuff.
Any difference.

Now play with the left ear to the left as head turns that way and back
to the middle as your head comes back.


Now alternate, 3 times the left ear, 3 times the right,
going to the left and back to the middle with the turning of your nose.


7. Imagine, doing all the above with the ears, one at a time, tuning the opposite
way of the moving of your head.

8. Then do it. First left ear this time, tuning to the middle as your head turns to the left, and tuning to the left as your head returns to the middle.

Rest. Imagine this with your right ear.
Then do it.

Then imagine alternating 3 times each ear as you move your head (the ear and the head both in imagination)
Then do it, experience it, love the you ness of your learning beyond who you thought you were.


9. Do all the above in this way:
As your head goes to the left, sometimes rotate your toes to the left, and sometimes to the right.
Keep ankles as they are, and rotate your toes in your hips joints, like windshield wipers, and sometimes the toes wag left as your head is coming back to the middle and sometimes they was left as your head is turning to the left.

Play with that as a possible wake up to your day game.


10. Add on ears to the head and toes game.


11. For old time Feldies, eyes could be added, but I'd wait until another day,
and do a lot of imagining first.

12. Very important: get up and walk around, preferably outdoors, preferably at least twenty minutes with no cell phone any where near you.
Walk and feel each foot on the ground and play:
listening with the ear of the foot touching/ pressing the ground
listening with the ear of the foot lifting/ off the ground

Do this and follow your breathing

Do this and have no words in your head

Do this for the sake of the enlightenment of you and the whole race,
but don't think even that in words

Without words:
no you.


Peace that passeth all understanding.


Thursday, November 25, 2010


thanks Moshe
and all the babies
of the world
Mozarts one and all
making the new from scratch and sniff
and push and shove

gravity is the game
we learn to play

and then the love

some learn

most don't

oh, well:

if you are a practitioner:
love every stuck pain confusion
chance to learn

every "un-nice" person
who tells you something you
don't want to hear

every place the client's body "can't"

All God
a chance to dive into reality


if you aren't a practitioner,
yes you

in what?

give thanks for all that
then be silent
and let
the thanks

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

does this poem, from, tell tons about giving a good lesson?

yes. ( and there is more to a lesson than just learning from the I don't know
but it's a start.

and without upgrading action, too, it's not a real lesson)

Austin geology: Southwest Parkway

today's poem
in the usual place
we get stuck, mind, body, thinking, feeling:
this needs to be better
this shouldn't be like this
this arm shouldn't...
this relationship shouldn't...
this world shouldn't...

that place

a ripe place,
good poop crap shit
for the compost of:


the good old turn it around question
the good old wake up
to God = Reality = who rules the scene anyway?

as a friend says:
when i argue with God I
but only 100% of the time

and so
the way out of stuck
is always
"right around the corner"
but not "right" as in right vs wrong
that takes too long, too much suffering a lifetime
of agony

but the  right around
like nearby
right around the corner
from our stuckness
from our suffering is
the question:

Is it True?

Tis it true,
tis it true
tis it true,

Is this thought idea belief batch of blah blah in my head
is it reality
(sigh: once more)
the good old
blah, blah?

And the answer

Is "Nah," and we're free

or, "I don't know"
and we're in the world

well: you look feel sense notice

what's it for you,
the "I don't know" world?

when you are in the "I don't know" world
and you don't have the story you "should" know

what's it like?

the verbal answer to that can even
"I don't know"
what it's like to be in the "I don't know" world
which is consistent, if nothing

and it's more

a lot more

because without the words
and with the question:
What's it like to be in the "I don't know" world:

 what's your experience

what's your experience


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Cure vs Improvement

I've been exploring this for a long time on this blog,
and here,
in re-reading "The Case of Nora," good old Moshe Feldenkrais lays it on thick,
and with a variation I'd never really articulated,
an understanding of people's preference to be "asleep,"
although he doesn't call it that.

Watch this though:

From Case of Nora, page 51:

Nora wanted or expected cure, not improvement.

"Improvement" is a gradual bettering which has no limit.

"Cure" is a return to the previously enjoyed (practiced) state of activitiy,
which need not have been excellent or even good.

The habitual and familiar we do not question; improvement we grade.

The former is the automatic background for our system; the latter is the
foreground of our awareness.

The two are different dimensions. One is an atavistic sensation;
the other is a learned knowledge that gives us freedom of
which is the major prerogative of Homo sapiens."

That's the quote.

I've often said it like this:
people plod along at some state like negative 3, but
it feels normal.

Then they get in an accident or some such, and plummet
to negative 6.

They want to be cured, put back to negative three,
rather than slowly getting better, negative 6, negative 5, negative 4,
and on and on, plus one, plus two, plus three, and so on.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

side to side: head and ribs and pelvis as a sweet happy aware of each other team

Side to side seems easy
often people get "confused."

Good. As our buddy Albert E says:
"Show me someone who's never made a mistake
I'll show you someone who's never learned anything."

One of the key principles of this work is
to sort of groove
on unknowning
relish ambiguity
to get
about the state of :
what is going on?

In that state,
we can be new
if we are honest
that's always the characteristic of being "now."

side to side.

Sit forward in a chair, both feet on the floor, spine straightish and feeling
as if it is holding up your head.

Lean a tad forward so you could hop up or to the side

Now,  here, more or less on your skeleton,
play with this difference:

Head rotating left and right

Head tilting left and right

In the ROTATION, your nose goes left and right

In the TILTING, your nose stays straight ahead and your eyes tilt
so that when you tilt your head to the left, your right eye goes
up a bit and your left eye goes down.

In all movement lessons, always go "less than your limit."
About 80% at most.
And much less force than you think you need. At cut out
half the force, maybe more.
And go slowly: at least half as slowly as habitual.

And all that slow, and soft and less than limit

At habitual speed, force and cranking out to the limit,
no learning is going to take place.
You'll be a great donkey, but
why throw away the greatest anti-entropy organ
in the universe (that we know so far): the human brain.

Your brain.

So: to repeat: slow,  gentle, less than your limit. Always in something
you want to improve. For awhile at least.

Do the titling very slowly and feel / sense what is going
on in your neck
Be really honest if you are rotating your nose and neck, too.

Go back and forth: rotating, and tilting,
so that you can really, slowly and deliciously tell the difference.

2. Good. Rest. Sit upright, eyes closed and feel what a small
amount of aware and soft and learning oriented and not going to the limit
can do to organize your whole system.

3. Now play with your ribs, as such:
take each hand to the ribs on the opposite side,
and sitting upright,
pull your ribs first to the right,
and then to the left.

As per always: slow, gentle, less than limit.
Notice the shape your spine makes when your ribs go
left and when the go right.
Notice which verterbrae move and how.
Notice any tendency to shift your weight as this happens.

4. Rest and sense yourself.
Notice shifts in breathing, ease, sense of your spine  etc.

5. Combine tilt your head and bringing your ribs right and left,
so that you begin to understand


Well: go slow, gentle, aware and less than limit and explore this:
As your head tilts to the left,
pull your ribs gently, slowly, awarely to the right,
so you feel as if the tilting in your neck goes all the way down
your spine making a crescent shape in your whole back.

Go slowly , and at first just do this head tilting to the left (go slowly and gently enough
to catch yourself if you start to rotate the head, and then stop:
just tilt)
as your ribs in the middle are pulled to the right.
Notice that the top ribs and bottom ribs go to the left.

Really explore.
You get an A+ no matter "how you do."
See how delicious you can make this:
tilt your head left to involve you whole torso.

6. Now rest.
I know we haven't tilted right yet. Good.
Notice if the two sides feel difference
and notice any additional sweetness to your whole

7, Now come back to readiness to move,
and IMAGINE tilting your head to the right, while
you pull the middle ribs to the left.
IMAGINE this several times
and then do it ONCE.
Notice in the doing what you skipped in imagination.
Imagine it again.
Do it again.
and once more: imagine, filling in more and more.
Do it once and see what you missed.

8. Rest.

9. Now, hands on ribs, IMAGINE going left and right tilt
with your head as the ribs make your spine into a long
Then do this both ways a number of times.
Each time see if you can feel and notice and enjoy
something new.

10. Rest and feel all of you.

11. If you want to stop, this is a nice place to get up and take a walk.
If you want to continue, all good movement needs
to include the pelvis, so come back later, or forge ahead now to
the seat of you.

Notice your pelvis.
Shift your weight to the right "sit bone" and raise your left hip
a little off the chair.
Now shift to the left "sit bone" and raise your right hip
off the chair.
Go slowly.
Do this a number of times just raising the right hip and pressing in the left.
And then a number of times just raising the left hip and pressing down
the right.

12. Rest

13. Now, make the crescent shape of tilt your head
the full spine by practicing, exploring, enjoy this:

tilt your head to the left
pull the middle ribs to the right
(noticing the bottom ribs and top ribs going left)
put your weight on the right side off your pelvis
so your left hip can raise and complete the crescent shape
in your back.

Just do this way a number of times.
Until it is delicious.

14. Rest and feel your breathing and your spine.

15. as above, IMAGINE  doing the tilt to the right:
head tilt to the right
middle ribs to the left,
right side of pelvis up and toward the right ear
left side of the pelvis pressing down.

Now DO IT ONCE and compare to the imagining.
Go back and forth with doing and improving your
imaginary version.

16. Rest.

17. Go tilting of the whole spine both right
and left,
be slow, gentle, less than the limit, aware,
looking for pleasure and learning each time.

18. Rest.

19. If you really want some fun,
go through the whole thing again, at
each step singing some simple song
you love to sing.

20. Feel yourself in sitting. Compare to the beginning.

21. Come forward onto your feet and stand. Shift weight to the
left and right and see if something solid and easy and connected
has occurred in you.
Walk around.

enjoy you day and your life.

I take questions via email
and invent these lessons to suit what's bothering


Friday, November 05, 2010

Turning and Learning, Again? Sure, why not.

A bit of bio and a sweet turning while sitting opportunity to “wake up” to spine, life, movement…and more.

From October 17, 2009 to October 16, 2010 I lived mainly on an amazing island in the Pacific Northwest by the name of Orcas Island. I will write about it again in April when I go back for the summer.

Now it is fall, turning into winter. I am in Texas and a supposedly magically part of Texas, by the name of Austin. Austin was reputed to be the Berkeley of Texas, and many people said it would be amazing,  and it has been.


I came knowing two people who couldn’t get back to me and stayed three nights with a wonderful couple who didn’t know me but where willing to take a couchsurfing chance on me. This was Bridgette and John. We liked each other and I weeded their garden and gave the Bridgette “lessons” I teach, a form of gentle and awakening body brain movement from the Feldenkrais Method® and the Anat Baniel Method.

She and her husband found me my next stranger with whom to stay and marvelous raconteur and permaculture activist and Texas good old boy if someone who was an MD and PhD and threw them away because of wanting real healing outside of allopathic medicine can be called a “good old boy.”
Anyway. That was Ted. I cleaned Ted’s refrigerator, a more daunting process than you might imagine, and gave him some lessons and he was grateful and pleased and we turned out to be kindred and brotherly friends.

And Ted led me to Sonora, a bright transplanted star from Missouri, who raised four children in Austin and teaches voice and piano out in southwest Austin right next to the Waldorf school (where she sent all her kids). And Sonoma has room to store me for the winter, a teenagers’ house with the teenagers gone and some land we are going to turn into a garden and now I’m ready to stop talking writing about me and let the focus be on you and how you can wake up to your body and ease and pleasure and learning in the moment.

That’s our life. This being in the moment is our life, whether we notice it or not.
Many enjoy noticing it and find freedom and pleasure and ability to love and forgive and be creative and discover the joy of the new when they are present.

We’re all going to die, and each moment is a gift and a miracle, and moving slowly and with attention can wake us to that miracle. And if the movements are designed to pattern and reawaken natural “functions” that make our life full and vital and easy, as the movements are in the Feldenkrais Method and the Anat Baniel Method, then this waking up can be not only a coming to the present, but an upgrading of your whole nervous system so that we feel younger and taller and lighter and more at home in our “bodies” and brains after the little lesson.

And here’s one.
Here’s a game in which you can begin to come back to you.

What a gift.

One: sit at ease at the forward edge of your chair. Feel your arms and legs and spine and pelvis and ribs and head. Sense yourself. Sense your breathing. Be aware of being alive. Be aware of being aware.

Two: turn your head to the right and to the left, slowly and easily and less than the limit Go for pleasure and learning and awareness. “Range of motion” is a strange and awful trap. Don’t fall for it. Slow into the delicious present of each time you move being brand new. Notice differences in turning right and turning left. Notice differences as you slow and ease into paying more clear and curious attention. Notice the moment.
Notice being alive.
Rest. Feel what slow and attentive movement can do for your mind and body.
It is good.

Three: turn your head, in sitting more or less upright, just to the left and back to the middle. Several times. Each time slowly and with pleasure and learning.

Four: put your hands each under the opposite arm pit, so you feel your ribs. Now slowly turn to the left and back to the center. Sometimes just turn “the head.” Sometimes pull the ribs to the left so that your torso and head are a team.
Go slowly. Gently. Pleasurably. With learning.
Notice your spine in all its 24 vertebrae glory.
Notice the difference in “just head,” and head neck and torso and ribs as team.
Rest. In the middle. Eyes closed. Sensing the all of you experience: head spine arms legs pelvis ribs feet hands breathing.

Five. Take the hands the same way as above and rotate your ribs to the left, not to the gosh darned “limit,” but over there comfortably, and leave your ribs and torso and sternum facing that way.
Now like this, rotate slowly your head back toward the center, and then a little to the left of where your chest is pointing.
The usual: slow, gentle, pleasure, learning.
Come back to the center and rest.

Six: Take your head and eyes to the left and let them rest comfortably there. And now, hands on opposite side ribs as before, rotate your ribs to the left and back to the center, keeping your head to the left.
Slow, gentle, pleasure, each time new and a learning.
Rest in the center.

Seven. Tilt side to side as you sit, so that your weight is sometimes on your right “sit bone” and sometimes on your left. Enjoy this. Think of the “sit bones” as the two feet on which you stand when you sit.
Enjoy this.
Slow, gentle, etc.

Eight: Tilt to the left sit bone and stay there , and with your weight over there, begin to bring your right knee forward, by pushing your right hip forward. Go gentle. If you don’t get it, just imagine something, anything. But go slowly, and keep your right foot on the ground, and slowly push your right knee a little bit forward and then back and then forward again so you feel your hips rotating to the left.
Go really slowly. Go really gently. Don’t demand you “get it” if you don’t. Find the pleasure. Find the learning.

Nine: Take your hands to the opposite arm pits and rotate the torso to the left and when there, tilt to the left sit bone and bring the right knee forward, and stay rotated in both hip and torso, and now bring your eyes left and right while your head stays pointing where it’s pointing. Many times. Slow and easy.

Ten: sit in ease and awareness. Turn your head to the left with maybe knowing your ribs can help, maybe knowing your pelvis can help, maybe knowing your eyes can help.
Take lots of time to enjoy this.
Take a mini rest.
Turn both right and left and notice the difference.

Eleven: stand up and walk around and see if somehow life isn’t lighter and brighter and more clear and happy and easy for you.