One year ago I was in India: walking on sandy beaches, creating flower pedal mandalas with my friends, and celebrating our wedding. Today I am walking through the grey-brown-ish snow of Hamburg and am thinking about borders and boundaries, within and without.
I am working with the somatic principle of containment at the moment, with being held and holding, and find it interesting how it suites the times:
● Within which physical boundaries are you moving right now?
● How is your sense of what lies outside of these boundaries?
● And how does your “within” feel?
Containment is the domain where we experience safety within the boundaries of our own body and in its contact with the environment. An awareness of containment also enables the experience of vastness and expansion, the inner vastness within the boundaries of the body as well as the opening and containing of what lies outside of us.
Maybe you, too, can’t be active in the outside in the ways you would like to be at the moment. I therefore invite you to a journey into the vastness of your inner body: where you are carries by your bones and you skeleton, where you are held together by all the muscles and fascia all the way to your contact boundary: the skin.
Simple Somatic Practice to do anytime:
If you feel the need for being held and unplugging from what’s going on around you, you can strengthen the contact boundary that is your skin. You can brush over your skin, feel how your clothes are touching your skin or wrap yourself into a blanket – and notice for a moment how your body feels as you dive into your inner vastness. Maybe something can relax into this containment, and maybe you begin to notice all that is going on inside of you that usually goes unnoticed in the hurry of the day.
Whatever your body whispers to you here, give yourself a little love: a self-hug does have a somatic effect!
And if you feel a need to be more in contact with your environment and hold more in the container of your inner body: you can consciously tune into the front of your body, and open your throat, your heart area and your belly with deep breathing or a body posture that stretches your front. You can for example let your head fall back into your neck as you are sitting, and look up, maybe close your eyes, and observe what this does to your sense of vastness extending beyond your inner body.
Somatic containment allows us to play with protection and vastness and to give our body what it needs in the moment – no matter how restrictive the outer circumstances might be.
When talking about peace, containment also plays an important role: with spaces and boundaries, and the sensitivity to know, how much we can hold and what we need in order to feel held. Our own body teaches us a lot about the skills that the daily practice of peace requires – be it professionally or at home.
I would love to hear what you discover on your journey into the wisdom and vastness of your inner body! 🙂