Help! There's No Meaning in This!


Someone commented the other day about how many belief systems there are about the body. The implication was that Moshe Feldenkrais's method was a belief system.

I concluded that the basis of Feldenkrais, which is incontrovertible human mechanics, does not include beliefs. It is a general system of learning that happens to use human movement as its vehicle. Human learning has many paths. This is just one. What we layer on top of our movement is beliefs, stories, labels, boxes, ideas, and hopes.

Focus on Sensory Feedback Without Judgment

The Feldenkrais Method clarifies sensory feedback, which any alive person can do in any condition. This feedback is only distorted because of our lack of awareness, which comes from many sources, including injury, trauma, self-image, and pain. It doesn't matter.

What's true is that if we had perfect awareness, we'd all be perfect beings with perfect movement.

Greater or lesser awareness comes and goes without judgment.

Hence, in Feldenkrais our movement is not given an explanation based on something we perceive as a color, aura, rightness or wrongness, birth order, size, ability, mental health, spiritual belief, or astrological sign. Nor do we rely on a medical diagnosis for the way we move because the same diagnosis produces different movement patterns in different people.

It's just movement.

Which, of course, makes it hard to maneuver because the space of no-meaning, of neutrality, is so vast.

My job is to provide clients a neutral experience of gravity: one without beliefs, judgements, or stories. In that space, you can feel something new, wordless, and vast.

Reinvention Comes from the Neutral Ground

Letting go of old beliefs only happens when we stop giving so much weight to our definition of our experience. This weight is physical as well as mental and emotional. When our experience shifts, the heaviness lifts. We take a relieved breath in the newly lightened space.

We all inhabit our body, and we all look for the meaning of that residence. What does it mean that we feel things? What does it mean that we're injured, sick, in pain, or have a disease? What part of "me" is damaged?

In the Feldenkrais Method we talk a lot about where the "I" resides. Do I reside in my body, my mind, my stomach, my left knee? At what point am "I" present? Moshe Feldenkrais thought for decades about this, and his wisdom is palpable throughout his method.

The Feldenkrais Method creates a blank slate, a neutral ground, from which we can reinvent ourselves again and again. As we become open to our experience, perhaps we feel something outside the given definition of ourselves as in pain, injured, or diseased.

I know this is what helped me get through difficult times.

My teacher, Dennis Leri, told me when I was in the midst of an emotionally wretched situation, "Just get on the floor and do a lesson."

This cut across all the looping of my mental landscape. Sometimes there is no reason you can hang onto for life’s events. There is just the next experience.

And sometimes the next experience is the reason.