The Vault

Unreliable Sensory Appreciation

Ken Thompson

 

I was extremely pleased to be able to take part in the proceedings, and thoroughly enjoyed offering two workshops, emphasising some of the basic principles of the Technique.

I was also grateful to have the chance to learn and benefit from attending other presenters' workshops and talks. The standard of tuition offered was extremely high, and everyone I spoke to expressed in a very positive manner how much they had learnt, and even more, how much they had enjoyed being in Sydney. Say no more!

My own contribution was an introduction to some of the basic principles of the Technique, and in particular the problem of unconscious habitual response to a stimulus, and the possibility of saying "No" to all that!

Having that ability to make space between stimulus and response, and then consciously deciding to re-educate the use of one's self, is not as easy as we would like to think!—see mind-map overpage for details.

Most of the students who attended my sessions where extremely cooperative and soon began to pick up the ideas behind the movement patterns offered. We used the basic walking procedure from the Chinese Tai Chi Ch'uan, which, because it is done slowly and in harmony with the breath, is an ideal way of maintaining the working integrity of the individual when in motion. In learning to walk along parallel lines, in a way which is definitely unfamiliar to most people, this proves a great way to experience something that feels wrong, but turns out to be right when you observe your feet!

Coordination Movements

Also by expanding your awareness to take in kinesthetic sensory appreciation with an observation of yourself in action, it is possible to begin to bring about a change in your response pattern at that moment in time. This was achieved by doing some simple co-ordination movements from a lying down position. These are not exercises in the normal sense of the word, they are more akin to the Dart procedures, where you have opportunity to follow the movement closely, observing which muscle groups are in action, what range of movement is possible in joints, and how much energy is being used, etc. Because of the limited time it was only possible to execute a small number of the co-ordination movements. For the full hour sequence, there is an audio tape I have produced which is now available—see details at the end of this article.

We all tend to trust our feelings. And at a basic sensory level this is O.K. That is, we know when we are standing up or sitting down, whether we are hot or cold, etc. But if we start to go a little deeper into our make-up, then things tend to be less clear.

For example, if you normally write with your right hand, put the pen in the other hand and write something. Notice how much energy you put into the task?

Now put the pen back in your right hand, and write, do you notice that less energy is required then before?

Have you noticed when you go to climb a flight of stairs, you always tend to step off with the same foot? If you try the other foot, it feels all wrong!

Reversing the normal way we do things gives us a great opportunity to find out more about how we are using ourselves, particularly in the expansion of energy.

That is, because our habitual use tends to be 'overdoing', producing excessive use of muscles, some muscles even unrelated to the task, particularly, of course, in our neck!!

One and a half hours was all too short for a workshop of this nature, but, from the feedback I received, I was very encouraged, and I am looking forward to stimulating more interest next time, so roll on the next Congress.

May I take this opportunity to express my thanks to all members of the organising committee, for all the hard work that they had obviously put in for a very successful Congress, and in particular to David Garlick and his 'team'.

FOOTNOTE

A one hour tape "Co-ordination Movements Vol 1" is available directly from the author for £UK7.50. It involves a series of synchronised movements—performed lying down—working in harmony with the breath. Although well within the average person's range, they still present quite a challenge.

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