Wisdom From Within: Embodiment of Ancestral Teachings

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Join us for an immersive program with Luchy Lopez Wisdom From Within: Embodiment of Ancestral Teachings. This program begins January 13, 2024 and meets monthly on the 2nd Saturday of the month for 6 months. To get a taste of what this program will explore Luchy shares a story of Senai, a student of hers who found profound healing through embodiment. 

Senai began working with me because she had never paid attention to her body and felt the time had come. She had been through a very painful illness for years. At times, her condition had taken her to the point of imagining throwing herself out of the window. Working 14-17 hours a day, she hardly slept. In the morning, she suffered from intense anxiety and anguish from the very moment she woke up. For years, she had been under psychiatric medication and diagnosed with congenital depression that she was told would never go away. 

On top of that, every week, Senai had to visit the physiotherapist to take care of a chronic inflammation in her hip that also "was going to bother her forever." At 45 years old, Senai has had a complicated relationship with her parents. After many years of psychotherapy, she concluded that they never loved her, and she accepted that. Drinking alcohol became her way to alleviate suffering.

We began liberating her channels of bodily expression, working through the six basic emotions. Gradually, Senai's vitality began to return. After each session, Senai discovered new possibilities of experiencing her life outside her constructed narrative. 

Despite her progress, her relationship with her mother was still causing her intense suffering. Her most significant change came through a dancing session with her ancestors. In that session, she received information about how women in her family were not allowed to express joy, anger, tenderness, or eroticism. The ancestors showed her they had gone through life, switching from sadness to fear and vice-versa. They showed her how denying some natural basic emotions had limited their lives. 

Basic emotions arise naturally inside us at the moment circumstances require them. Even if we deny, suppress, or want to manipulate emotional expression, they´ll be stored somewhere in our bodies. Without the “epigenetic authorization” to feel and express, the ones we accept tend to impersonate these emotions. Without permission to feel each of the basic emotions in a spontaneous moment of exchange with the world, we easily dive into an internal conflict with a high cost. 

The wear and tear from this conflict may be so significant that it is hard to endure. Emotional internal conflicts can lead to despondency and create a profound loss of meaning, feeling “dead in life” rather than full of vitality. I think about basic emotions like a kind of “substance” that, on one hand, helps the animal we are to survive and, on another, is an anchor that allows our hearts to develop the virtues treasured in it.

Senai´s meeting with her ancestors continued until she developed a very intense headache, ending her dance session early. She had a significant insight when she surrendered to the fact that she needed to stop. She saw her mother when she was a child, complaining of severe headaches. Senai couldn´t stand her mother's grievance and harshly criticized her. She became convinced that her mother was either making it up or self-provoking it to manipulate everyone in the house. 

Senai´s headache, which became impossible to overcome, was a tremendous limitation to continuing to explore her relationship with her ancestors through movement. Feeling the pain changed her perception of her mother. She heard the message from her ancestors: how, over several generations, they continued to deny their feelings and emotions. They told her about the dangers they had suffered. Senai had sensations and intuited scenes that vibrated this truth in her heart and body. 

These traumas had created a core of belief in her family concerning what happens to a woman if she is happy, if she expresses anger, if she feels tenderness or if she dares to experience the terrible consequences of eroticism. Two years after we began to unclog the channels of basic emotions, and about five months after her encounter with her ancestors, Senai no longer recognizes herself. 

With a doctor's approval, she stopped all the medication. She has started taking care of her diet. She lost weight, gained muscle mass, and can now work more efficiently. She sleeps 8-9 hours a night and no longer works 14 or 17 hours a day. Occasional alcohol consumption, but only for celebrations. She saves quality time for her husband and son. 

She has not returned to the physiotherapist after the last check-up months ago, where she was permanently discharged. For the first time in her life, she feels that her mother and father love her underneath the surface even though they have no natural embodied capacity to express it. Their love was bound by unexperienced anger, tenderness, joy, and eroticism. If these emotions had been lived, they would have allowed them to defend Senai in situations of vulnerability and lack of protection.

Senai is now able to imagine a more hopeful future. The love she has felt from her ancestors makes her feel like she belongs to an ancient lineage and is part of something bigger. She feels validated for a broader exchange with the world and is open to contributing her knowledge and expertise for the greater good. Interdependence is still mysterious for her but also full of love and hope. 

I share Senai's case, not only with her consent but also with her joy of being helpful. It wouldn't have been possible at the beginning of her journey. The sessions I propose for our online class are an opportunity to expand your vitality and create an exchange with the environment. They may also help you recover and strengthen your sovereignty over your life experience, feeling part of what precedes you and what is to come. This brings us naturally closer to an ecosystem experience and our desire to find cohesion and harmony.

In my approach, psycho-corporal imagination is not treated as fantasy, and space recreation is not just for children. Here, imagination is a substance capable of creating reality and playing with space and free expressive movement, how it dialogues with us.

Article written by Luchy Lopez

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