When Mary Oliver writes that “you only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves,” that could be sufficient instruction for a life well-lived. Many of us, however, are disconnected from our animal bodies. Many of us modern people tend to move around, as Thich Nhat Hanh describes “lost in thought” disconnected from our bodily experience and the living, sensual world that surrounds us.
If you think about how much your attention, posture and movement have shifted just in the last 10-20 years, with the increase of screen use, and organizing ourselves around cell phones, let alone the changes over the last thousand or 20 thousand years. Though our daily behaviors and activities have changed significantly, our physiology, our nervous systems, our psyches have not, and the intelligence of our animal bodies is often right there under a thin surface level of forgetting, or, as the Zen saying goes “closer than our own skin.”
“I loved Carl’s Animal Body and Strength and Mobility courses. For me, both were a movement laboratory in which I became aware of my habits, discovered new ways to move, and always experienced myself as a more efficient, elegant, and spontaneous mover. Now, I’m a way “over the hill” being and movement lover, so am thrilled that I continue to add to rather than subtract movements from my repertoire. I have been studying for many years with Carl and Erin and wholeheartedly attribute my body’s vitality and love of learning to their teachings, humor, and kindness. Bottom line, go ahead, give it a try, you might just discover something new and delightful about you. ” – Kristen Paul
In this course, we will seek to return to the natural intelligence of our animal bodies- in how we move, in how we sense ourselves, and in how we are in relation to the living world around us.
The course will also support us in growing our unique natural movement practice. We will learn ways of moving on the floor, in standing, in sitting, in transitions, where we can deepen strength, mobility and embodied presence.
Some of the things we will explore include:
- Deepening your direct, somatic relationship with the Earth
- Growing attentional flexibility, and learning to receive the intelligence that shines through each of our senses.
- Deepening interoception, the capacity to sense ourselves directly from inside, without needing to be interpreted by thinking mind
- Exploring embryological, and developmental movement patterns, from this life, along with movements from our much older swimming, creeping, and crawling ancestral line.
- Having access to the intelligence of the head, heart and guts simultaneously
- Integrating the head in movement without being stuck in it. Are there any other animals you know who move with head out of alignment and disconnected from the rest of the body?
- A quality of lightness and sensitivity in how we move.
- A reduction of unnecessary tension.
- A deepening of self-organized, integrated strength
- Growing our skill and lightness in our transitions.
- Moving in a way that is in intimate relationship to the living world around you.
- Growing greater sensitivity and respect for the beings around us, and the spaces we move through
- A quality of grace and elegance in our aging
- A sense of belonging in an animate world
In each of our 6 weeks together, we will explore movement lessons based Feldenkrais, Fighting Monkey, along with other Natural Movement explorations, practices around voice and rhythm, guided somatic meditations, all interwoven with soulful poetry, selected readings, group sharing, and practices to explore while out in the natural world.
All classes will be recorded and each registrant will receive the recording if you are not able to make all of the sessions live.
6 Weeks. beginning Monday, Feb 26th-April 8th 10-11:30 Mountain Time on Zoom (no class on February 19th)
Also, please read our cancellation policy here.
There are scholarship spots available if money is an obstacle to participation- just shoot me a note.
Don’t know me? You can find out more here