Embodiment: Going Beyond the 5 Senses

Savoring your body, your temple

Issue #19

By Vivienne Arkell

Sensuality is amazingly intriguing to explore. You can take so many roads on your journey. Exploring the goddess path, I tripped upon another branch of practice that really resonated with me: Embodiment.

Writing about Valentine’s Day and love, while deep in a new book State of Affairs by Esther Perel, I still found myself distracted. What is it that I want to help women achieve? I am driven and passionate in my personal sensuality practice and mission, yet still searching for the most perfect way to share my experiences and messages.

Enter Embodiment Training, led by Will Johnson at the Institute of Embodiment Training, noting that it’s “like coming home at last. Their mission statement explains that, “through combining the orientation of Western somatic therapy with Eastern meditation practices, Embodiment Training leads you to the discovery of your natural, embodied state. The practices mix bliss (the complete surrender to the deep energies of the body) with presence (immaculate mindfulness) and lead you on a journey of unfolding that takes you ever deeper into the very center of your center. It’s a path of awakening that views the body as the doorway, not the obstacle, to personal growth and spiritual transformation.”

As a branch of study, Embodiment takes is place alongside some of the better known arts, principles, and techniques such as chakras, traditional Chinese medicine, Tantra, Shaman, Tao, and Reiki. A great thing about embodiment is that once you are aware of the techniques, a state of flow can be achieved without needing a therapist, shaman or other being to be present.

The Center for Embodied Wisdom, based in San Francisco, suggests how “the world now urgently needs us to act. It is no longer sufficient to simply know or understand. Through action, voice, presence and connection we shape ourselves and our futures. Our bodies are where our qualities, our intension and commitment make contact with the world.” They note that embracing Embodiment – similar to embracing sensuality – is like any practice. “It is through practice that new capabilities are embedded and old habits discarded. Practices and tools that recognize and work through the body create tangible, grounded and lasting growth.”

Jenna Ward, founder of the School of Embodied Arts, speaks specifically of feminine embodiment arts, and a “global movement of women waking up their bodies. Remembering the power of pleasure and the sacredness of our sensation.” One of her main dreams, true also for The Sensualogist, is to guide women into “emotional empowerment and sensual aliveness.”

Life’s Key, at the namesake website, reminds us that “setting our internal senses in active mode means opening up your heart, mind and soul, and connecting to another person beyond all external considerations and superficiality – to truly connect with others, as well as to understand and love them for what they are inside and not just for how they appear to our limited physical senses.”

Go beyond the external senses of taste, sight, touch, smell, and sound. Awaken the deeper layers, the internal senses and sensuality within your body. Through this embodiment practice, tap into the fluidity of your body. Liberate the energy that may be frozen within you in order to feel the flow and nuance of these primal sensations. Luxuriate in your temple.


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