The mind: Transform it through your body

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TOGETHER MAGAZINE SELF HELP On the other hand how extensively can the body move? Physically and geographically speaking the body can move endlessly. We are not strictly confined to the spacial field of our bodies. Our body is a boundless medium of exploration and movement. More concretely, physical perception is cultivated by exploring and movement. How does an infant learn? He learns essentially with his body. He’ll crawl all over, get dirty, put objects in his mouth, etc. The child develops awareness through body movement and discovering physical perception.

If we assume that mind cultivation happens when the mind is at rest, body awareness happens when we sense and feel in our body. On a physiological level, by increasing body movement through spatial and physical perception, each movement creates a physical sensation which sends new information to the brain, resulting in higher mental awareness. In their interrelatedness, the body, through movement, naturally and constantly sends new perceptions to the brain to register. The moment we stop moving in our physical realm and exploring physical sensations, mental expansion ceases.

So like the infant we have to continuously look for new ways to feel and perceive with our bodies. Rather than letting the mind control the body, the body on its own is already speaking and acting for itself. Just like the person caught up in a (perceived) life threatening situation, the body naturally triggers the flight-or-fight response – a natural instinct and inherent physiological reaction towards survival. Like an ambulance with its siren, the body is constantly and continuously signaling to us. If we can capture these signals we can only increase our awareness.

Given the mind’s limited volume and size, what if we were to use our body and its physical capacity to exploit thE remaining 90% of our human potential? Rather than try to work everything out with the mind, which is constricted by its mental overload and our self limiting perception, why not work things out in the body? Allow the mind space and freedom to breath and give the body a chance to use its natural instincts and intelligence. Transformation, evolution and expansion happen at a level of not just mental but also physical freedom with each perception leading to an even higher level of awareness. Perception after perception, through sensing and feeling in and with the body, we can transform our mind and cultivate mental expansion. The Buddha didn’t become enlightened overnight. It took him many nights before he was awakened. Buddha, we often forget, was human. If he had the potential to realize himself, surely we can do the same.