What was interesting to me was the large reaction I had to this reading. Though I’m very fond of wisdom and do believe we know much of what we need to know, I am equally astonished by the thrill of anatomy and physiology and kinesiology: learning from outside the most basic structures of our cells and what parts are powerhouses and what parts are sluggish blobs and how what we feed ourselves determines whether we blob or function as little engines. It seems the very heart of wisdom to me to feed my brain frenzy and drink in as much information and science as I possibly can.
I found the distinction between ways of knowing unhelpful and all of me wanted to say
Also, massage therapists have some similar personality to clergy: want to help someone, want to touch someone, in my case: want to invite a larger narrative and inspire healing. There is also a lot of pain in the room. We get the occasional spurt of life horror erupting into the room. Prison ministry and my chaplaincy work at a mental hospital visit me in these moments. Suffering abounds as does the resilience of the human spirit.
I wonder often how we got to the place where the narrative of grace and welcome and wholeness turned into a source of such pain, devastation, and heartbreak. As we learn the muscles that have natural twist I think about narrative and how things get twisted. At the place of the twist is always tension and tension is always at those points. One does not ‘untwist’ to relieve the pressure. One takes a different approach.
Today we practiced finding the deepest muscle in the human body: the psoas muscle. It lies on the front side of the spinal column behind everything else in our bellies. The humility required to reach below someone’s liver and through the intestines to find that most buried muscle surprised me. To offer my belly to someone I’ve known for 12 days for their rooting and searching was humbling as well.