Thursday, June 13, 2013

The intelligent body

Life is experienced through and by the body. We understand our environment by processing through the skin, the bones, the muscles, the nervous system. We make sense of our environment, internal and external, by allowing the body to exist and move through both. We develop a greater sense of self through our dance.

Here are some excerpts from Psychology Today's blog post, Meaning in Motion, written shortly after the tragedy of the Boston Marathon bombing, by Christina Devereauz, Ph.D., BC-DMT.

"It is important to acknowledge that even those of us who were not direct victims (of the Boston Marathon bombing) or physically present at the event, collectively, were still affected. Our bodies take in these experiences and respond to such events."

"Media broadcasts showing film footage over and over of traumatic events such as the Boston Marathon bombing are not only mental images but they become body memories..."

"Traumatic events can threaten our sense of environmental and bodily safety. These experiences need to be processed through the body. Research advances have emphasized the importance of including the body in treatment of any type of trauma. According to dance/movement therapist Claire Moore,  'the sensations and actions that have become stuck in and after a traumatic event need to be integrated in the treatment process, so that the person can regain a sense of familiarity and efficacy in the body.' "

"So what should you dance? Why would dance be a vehicle to cope with daily stressors or even horrific tragedies...? Perhaps this is based on the specific distinction that dance in itself is innately an expressive art form, not just a physical release of body tension alone."

What story does your body tell?

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