100 posts — and what’s next

This is my 100th post on Biodynamic Meditation!

Just back from 4 days in Big Bend National Park, with the big sky, desert, mountains, river, hot springs, ravens, Mexican jays, javelinas, and numerous trails.

And most of all, quality time spent with my beloved 22-year-old granddaughter, Hannah.

And…it’s great to be back home, in my own bed, with comfort, solitude, and time to sit.

After over 3 months of daily meditations, when I start sitting, things start happening…perceptions of radiance at my face, the motions of the Tide, the vitality of my life force swirling within.

I remember when I started doing yoga (asanas) 40 years ago. At some point after my practice became habit, I realized I didn’t just DO yoga, I WAS (and still AM) yoga. It was in me.

Same now. I AM the radiance, the Tide, the swirliness, the health. It’s in me, and it’s in you too, and I can help you find it, if that is your desire.

So…I will continue my practice but won’t be posting so much about it. I will be reviewing my posts (I started on 11/11/22), exploring ways of teaching it, as one-to-one private sessions now, and later as a guided meditation/yoga nidra, for small groups, and whatever else emerges.

Thank you for checking out my posts on this inquiry. Please stay in touch! Links are in my Instagram bio.

#biodynamicmeditation #craniosacralbiodynamics #craniosacraltherapy #craniosacral #biodynamiccraniosacraltherapy #bcst #radianceatmyface #tide #swirliness #perception #love #vitality #lifeforce #teaching #practice

Whole body awareness with HeartMath sensor: 88 percent high coherence!

I did something different in my Biodynamic Meditation this morning.

I stayed with whole body awareness during my 45-minute session.

I didn’t put much effort into labeling what was happening.

I just felt my life force moving within my body and field, and it felt great.

And wow! So much life force moving within me!

I noticed how pleasurable it was to simply be aware of my life force energy for that entire period of time.

I clipped my HeartMath sensor to my earlobe and set up the Inner Balance app for a session again.

I was in high coherence 88 percent of the time today.

I could see on the report that HeartMath displays after completing a session how my coherence fluctuated. It’s never a straight line. It is always changing.

I just signed up for a HeartMath training called The Resilient Heart: Trauma-Sensitive HeartMath Certification. I so love learning how we can influence the autonomic nervous system since there’s just so much unhealthy stress in most of our lives.

Let’s change that. Change that, change the world.

Musings on teaching Biodynamic Meditation

Today is Day 93 of daily Biodynamic Meditations. In addition to posting daily about my experience, I am considering how to teach it.

There are so many ways: one-to-one, small groups, in person, online, in written and spoken formats, as a seated meditation, as a form of yoga nidra done in savasana.

Each person interested in learning this form of self-healing will come to it with different experiences and beliefs and issues.

Learning this includes paradigm shifts.

I believe the biggest one in our modern American culture is that healing takes place in a parasympathetic rest-and-digest state of being, NOT in a state of stress and anxiety, when resources are geared toward doing.

One big conundrum for healers who understand this is how to work with people who are anxious about their chronic health issues — where the perceived threat is coming from within.

Separating the anxiety-producing story from the actual sensations is a big deal. And it can be done! We can change our beliefs and our patterns toward deeper health and vitality.

These are just some of my musings that arose after my session this morning, in which the healing focus was swirliness, mostly in my pelvis.

I’m grateful to be able to access the energies of earth and heaven, gravity and levity.

If you are a teacher and have anything useful to add, please comment, or message me. Thank you.

Making a new practice teachable

Coherence. Resilience. The unified field.

Today I’m going to a silent retreat for women where I will work in silence on writing an outline for teaching Biodynamic Meditation.

This will be the first writing, outside a few random notes, that I’ve done on Biodynamic Meditation outside of these daily posts about my personal experience.

I’ve learned a lot over the past 92 days of this project, and of course I’ve been in training in Craniosacral Biodynamics off and on since 2013 and practicing since then as well.

Change your bias toward what’s going wrong, toward what’s going right.

What’s going right in your body-mind system?

Many of us, myself included, have a bias toward noticing what’s wrong, what hurts, is tense, stiff, sluggish, numb, dysfunctional.

We may even make up stories about what’s wrong, feeling ourselves deficient, flawed, less than, unworthy.

I’m motivated to get over that!

You know, if you’re not on life support in a hospital, there’s a lot that’s going right.

A LOT.

You’re breathing.

Your heart is beating.

You’re viewing this post and reading these words.

You very likely are hearing sounds, if you direct your attention there.

The many sensations of body awareness…

Your weight pressing down into whatever you’re sitting or standing or leaning on.

The sense of where you are in space, how your body is arranged, your posture.

Warmth or coolness.

Balance.

Emotions.

Your many systems that keep you organized and alive: cardiovascular, pulmonary, nervous, lymphatic, digestive, immune, etc.

Also, your mind. Your memories and imaginations, beliefs, motivations, identity, skills, preferences and avoidances, etc.

Underlying all is your life force. Yogis call it prana. Daoists call it qi (chi, ki).

I feel it when I do Biodynamic Meditation, doing yoga or qi gong, walking in nature, having a great conversation with someone, hugging a friend, practicing Craniosacral Biodynamics, and just at random times.

I feel grateful for being alive.

That’s what this is all about. This comes even before sensing the Tide in the central energy channel.

This is Day 90 of these posts.

To witness healing, be present and get out of the way

Feeling grateful this morning, for creation. For you, me, life.

My Biodynamic Meditation today: physiological sighs, settling into sitting posture, noticing tidal motion in central energy channel, monkey mind thinking, healing energy focusing for a bit in abdomen, then longer at cranium.

The sensations today in my cranium were not of bones subtly becoming more aligned, but of the dura mater at my temples and behind my forehead shifting, optimizing.

It’s still happening as I write, this incremental nature of healing.

We are made of energy patterns that shift in response to experience. Healing is about both being present and also getting out of the way to allow our patterns to optimize.

We get to witness this in Biodynamic Meditation.

Sensing swirliness is sensing your body healing itself

What is this swirliness that I sometimes sense in my Biodynamic Meditation sessions?

Another name for it is the inherent healing process.

Synonyms for inherent include intrinsic, integral, essential, natural, innate, inborn, inner.

I believe this inherent healing process is available in all of us humans…and Biodynamic Meditation is a path to discovering it in yourself.

To sense our own self-healing, our minds need to be calm, gently focused within on our sensations to the point of familiarity, and receptive to what we notice.

This is the heart of why anyone would want to learn Biodynamic Meditation.

Continue reading

Effervescence and soothing kindness nurture my vitality

My Biodynamic Meditation session this morning was about breath, awareness of my central energy channel, awareness of the Tide moving up and down and then settling at my sacrum as healing energy for a bit, moving up to my solar plexus region, and then to my crown chakra.

The energetic sensation was that of effervescence at my sacrum and my crown, and like soothing kindness at my solar plexus.

Continue reading

Nearing the end of trauma recovery: confidence and agency

One aspect of recovering from PTSD is not knowing when or if your trauma response will be activated again.

(Some people don’t like the word “triggered” and prefer to say “activated”. I’m using that term now to be more neutral. If a gun was involved in someone’s trauma, to say “triggered” in itself could be activating.)

I recently had an experience that really showed me how much progress I have made in trauma recovery, and I want to share it here in case you or someone you care about is struggling with PTSD recovery. It may give you/them confidence in the healing process.

But first, some background.

I’ve had an extreme stress response activated several times years after doing a lot of work on trauma recovery, which was many years after my childhood trauma.

These stress responses always seemed to happen out of the blue…as once again, the rug was pulled out from under my feet, and I lost my ground and was sent spinning, not knowing which way was up or down.

It’s pretty miserable to be flooded with stress hormones just because something happened in the present that in some way reminded me of the original trauma. The threat seems very real at the time.

However, I’d like to make it clear that each time I went into a stress response, I learned something. I wasn’t entirely helpless.

The most important learning was to check the situation out: just because my body and mind were all jacked up in response to an apparent immediate threat to my safety doesn’t mean there was an actual immediate threat to my safety.

I did some simple critical thinking. Am I safe in this very moment?

I was safe. No one was directly threatening me or my loved ones.

My perceptions played a trick on me because the original trauma was wired into my nervous system. That’s what PTSD is.

Even though I was grateful to be safe, I still had to deal with the cascade of stress chemicals.

When that happened, I tended to hole up by myself because I felt toxic and didn’t want to spread the toxicity. I did more self-nurturing than usual, taking soothing baths, skin brushing, giving myself manicures and pedicures and facials, listening to soothing music or recordings (Pema Chodron is great, also anything funny), taking naps and getting plenty of sleep, wearing soft fabrics, eating healthy, drinking endless cups of camomile tea.

I listened to guided meditations because it was so difficult to calm my monkey mind down when I tried doing my usual silent meditations.

My acupuncturist at the time said I had adrenal fatigue and recommended taking rhodiola and ginseng. After the first few times of being activated, I sought a Somatic Experiencing practitioner who helped me a lot.

My usual behavior was more go-go-go, hmmm, must be nice to have time for that stuff.

Was I addicted to stress? Did that make my stress response worse? I don’t know.

I made time to slow down and nurture myself and came to appreciate these activities when not activated.

I noticed that each time my trauma response was activated, it took less time to return to normal than before. The first time I was activated, it took three full months. The second time, about six weeks. The most recent, about a week.

And then just a few days ago, this happened:

I woke as I often do about 4 am. I laid in bed, in the dark, and my mind made its way back to a memory associated with the original trauma.

I started to feel activated. My back felt prickly and I felt agitated and a little panicky, like I need to do something! Now!

I realized I was at the beginning of a stress response. For the first time, it happened mildly and slowly enough that I was conscious of it beginning.

I did not want to go into a full-blown stress response.

I stopped thinking about the original trauma and brought my attention to my body, curled up safe in my bed, under the covers with my favorite pillow in the dark, in the present moment.

And the agitation and panic and chemical cascade just stopped. It seems like it took less than a minute to feel fully back to my safe and healthy self.

It seemed marvelous to me that I stopped being retraumatized simply by using my mind constructively.

I later told this to my colleague who’s helped me with trauma recovery bodywork, and he said I had agency.

Yes. I was not helpless, which seems to be a hallmark of traumatic experience. I could do something about it because I was conscious of the onset, able to distinguish present from past, able to direct my attention, and I knew what I wanted — safety and peace, not activation.

Also, there may have been some energetic guidance helping, but I don’t know for sure.

I do recall recently voicing what so many trauma survivors experience: How does one ever know that one has fully recovered from a trauma? How can one know there are no more flashbacks, no more activations?

I can’t know for sure, but this feels like a huge step forward in the direction of being free from reactivation.

A delicious and simple green soup

I did a craniosacral therapy session last week on a friend whom I hadn’t seen since the start of the pandemic. I went to his home since he has a massage table. We wore masks during the session with the window open.

The session was successful. He’d taken a spill on his bike, hit his head, didn’t seem too badly injured, went home…and noticed that he just didn’t feel right for a couple of weeks and called me. He felt shifts and releases throughout the session.

I sent him my Post-Concussion Self Care guidelines. If it was a concussion, it was minor, but any time the brain gets sloshed via head injury, craniosacral therapy can help, after any swelling goes down.

Anyway, he’s a great cook, and he invited me to share a mid-afternoon meal of his homemade green soup outdoors on his patio. Of course I accepted!

It was so delicious, I want to make it myself.

Here’s how he described making it:
1. In a stockpot, sauté an onion in olive oil.
2. Chop 2-3 different bunches of greens and stir into onions and olive oil. Choose from chard, spinach, kale, beet greens, collards, dandelion greens, arugula, or whatever leafy greens you like or have on hand.
3. Add 1 teaspoon salt.
4. Add about 6 cups water, cover, bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes.
5. When cool enough to handle, pour into a Vitamix and blend.
6. If purée is too thick, add water to thin to desired consistency.
7. Season to taste with more salt and pepper.

After heating it, he added chunks of avocado, a handful of pumpkin seeds, fresh garlic chives, and salt and pepper to taste. Oh, and bird peppers! I tried one. Too hot for me.

Yum. The amazing thing is how simple this recipe is. Of course, you could fancy it up by adding garlic, herbs, lemon juice or vinegar, and veggie or chicken stock instead of water. You could add a dollop of plain yogurt or sour cream or some croutons, or grate Parmesan on top.

I’ve since made it in an Instant Pot. Even quicker! Sauté onions and greens in olive oil. Add water and salt. Use the pressure cooker setting for 5 minutes, then let it naturally release. Run it through a Vitamix or use an immersion blender. Season and garnish.