To uncover the living experience of Life does take time. We have buried our openness to Life under layers of doing, controlling and contraction. Deep and painful experiences have desensitized us to Life, causing us to retreat into the maze of the mind. To step out of our addiction to being lost in thought requires that we make friends with our bodies and that we learn to feel again—both the wonderful feelings and the unpleasant ones.
For most of us this is a scary thing to do. Our bodies felt feelings when we were young that were both terrifying (rage, longing, sadness and fear) and socially inappropriate (exuberance and sexuality, to name a few). So we learned to live from the forehead up, freezing these feelings in our bodies. In order to stay unconscious, we only give our bodies fleeting attention and then abuse them with extremes of food, inactivity, overwork and the social drugs of alcohol, caffeine, nicotine and sugar. When our bodies give us the feedback that all is not in balance, we rail at these demands and often flood them with even more toxicity. In our unconsciousness, we experience this gift of a body as an alien object that resides in the realms below who we really are.
Usually we only listen to our bodies when they call out in pain. Because we’re not at home, the body is a repository for our emotional pain, becoming the enemy and a scapegoat for all sorts of problems. Many religions see it as something less than, a defilement of the spirit. It is interesting to note that most of our swear words are a judgment about some function of this exquisite creation. No wonder we move through our lives in such a disconnected way.
To come back into our bodies is to come back into our wholeness and into a deeper experience of Life. To be present in our bodies is to access the health and energy we have yearned for, allowing us to consciously engage with the reservoir of wisdom that is always there.
from Belonging to Life: The Journey of Awakening, Second Edition, p.32