Health of the human body goes beyond the boundaries of conventional Newtonian science that, when it comes to health and well-being, divides the body into non-related organs and systems. Current literature has been breaking through these old paradigms, recognising that the body, its organs and systems are inter-related.
Well-researched scientific evidence that has withstood the rigours of controlled studies is now well-documented, backing-up and recognising the important role the mind plays in making changes to the body. This article is not written to look in-depth into these studies and pass critique. Rather it is meant as a basic overview of the connection between fear, happiness and trust that these studies elude to. If you would like to look deeper into the area of neuroplasticity, cellular communication, human biology, how the brain de-codes and re-codes itself (a bit like rebooting your computer) and pyschneuroimmunology then I would highly recommend delving into the writings of the authors listed at the end. All of these works look at the power of the human mind and its role in healing the body.
Anxiety, Stress and Fear
Dis-ease and ill-health start with fear. A little bit of worry about what might happen, if left unattended, works like a snowball growing bigger over time. It also has the very real potential to turn into stress. And stress, as it is well documented in medical literature is a major contributing factor to illness. The more chronic our fears and concerns the greater the threat to one’s state of health. Fear and stress are intrinsically intertwined. Stress has its roots in fear and fear has the very real potential to create stress.
When the nervous system, as guardians of the human body, perceives a threatening situation it has the unenviable job of setting in motion, that is alerting or not, the body to action. The body’s cells display a response Lipton, B., PhD, describes as growth or protection behaviours. “Growth processes require an open exchange between an organism and its environment” … “protection requires a closing down of the system to wall the organism off from the perceived threat”. Protection or closing down of the system inhibits the growth process. What Lipton is describing here is basically an energetic response to stimuli of the senses.
The Energy of Fear
Life is energy/Qi that vibrates itself in more ways than we could ever begin to imagine. Fear is both an energetic response to stimuli of the senses as well as a quality of Qi/energy. It is a manifestation of Qi that by its very character creates contraction – it inhibits, restricts, blocks and, at its extreme is tense, tight and rigid. As exampled above it is a protective behaviour in response to a perceived threat. Close your eyes for a few seconds, think of being frightened and witness how the body responds. The type of energy that fear manifests in the human body is a pulling back, a shrinking inwards, a compression, a contraction.
By its very nature, when the body contracts or compresses inwards it inhibits the flow of one’s blood cells. Through the process of cellular communication fear in your mind contracts your blood cells, clumping them together. If worry, anxiety, fear and stress are not addressed, this ongoing contraction has the very real potential to show up in the body as illness and disease. Healthy blood cells flow freely through the body one-by-one. Contraction created by stress and fear, inhibits this free flow of blood cells, obstructing the body from receiving the oxygen, nutrition and information it needs to keep us happy and healthy. And as our experience of contraction is not limited to the body – with our energetic response manifesting itself on many levels – this contraction typically shows up outwardly in our interaction with the world at large.
As are all emotions, fear is simply an energetic response. This is not such a bad thing as it is a warning signal to the body of possible threat. What is not good is that we hold the fear response in the body. That is, the way in which we first responded to that environmental threat, through contraction, pulling back, shrinking inwards, is held in the muscles of the body. The good news is we all have the capacity to release fear from the body.
The best way to counteract the damaging affects of fear is to do the opposite – consciously replace fear with happiness. Again, close your eyes for a few seconds, but this time put a smile-on-your-dial and think joy and happiness and witness the body’s response. Synonymous with expansion, opening, lengthening, extending, happiness changes your energetic vibration from one of contraction to one of expansion.
Through the process of cellular communication, replacing fear with happiness, one experiences growth and increase, freedom and flow. When you do this you change the way in which you experience Qi, essentially re-creating your energetic vibration and the way in which you experience the world both internally and externally. When we release the tension and contraction that has its roots in fear, we allow blood circulation to return to those parts of the body that were once constricted. Delivery of the oxygen, nutrition and information held by these blood cells returns.
Trust over-rides Fears
Past experiences with their roots in fear, no matter how small or how big they were, need to be released from the body for it to heal. And this can sometimes be a scary experience as it may trigger those fears that have remained buried and anchored in the deepest recesses of the body. To counteract the debilitating effects of fear that keeps the body in a state of stagnation, requires trust. That is, through the process of what has been termed “cellular communication”, your blood cells need to trust you. The energetic quality of trust is one of opening-up, the opposite of contraction.
When we make a connection to our blood cells based upon trust, we can begin to reprogram the body to live a more healthier and happier life. CALLIGRAPHY HEALTH – the internal art of self-healing is based upon cellular communication. Over time, it enables a dedicated practitioner to dive deeper into the layers of fear that are held in the body. This is the real transformative practice of Nei Gong.
Note: for more info on enhancing the body-mind connection through building trust, please refer to my blog titled Compassion for Health.
Action through Practice
A happy mind is integral to the way in which we experience Qi. Making the shift from a place of fear and contraction to one of happiness and expansiveness comes through trust. In the beginning a large part of Calligraphy Health practice is about re-shaping the body to help breath, mind and movement to unite as one and flow freely through the body. It is about learning to become aware of where one contracts or holds tension in the body, and consciously releasing it. Through releasing this tension we are helping blood circulation to break up clumped cells and flush them from the body for health and well-being. Just like a river that has clogged-up, stopping the water from flowing freely, you break up the dam inside of you, allowing the river to flow again. In this analogy, the river is your blood circulation and the dam is your blood cells clumping together due to the energetic response (contraction) to fear and stress.
When we start to build a stronger, loving, and more trusting connection with our blood cells, our body opens-up to the new information being sent to it. For beginners these sensations such as warmth, tingling, shaking, or localised heat one feels during practice, are to do with blood starting to flow in places that were once blocked. Joy, happiness and peace are all qualities that derive from releasing and expanding. When we start to release tension we begin to experience these qualities that are aligned with expansiveness. Practice connecting to your blood cells, build up trust with your body and remain with expansiveness as part of your daily practice.
Happy Life to All
Pam Hellens for Calligraphy Health
Doidge, N., MD; Dispenza, J., Dr; Lieff J., MD; Van Der Kolk, B., Dr;
Lipton, B.H., PhD; Anodea J., PhD; Yang, J.M., Dr.