The first element.
The first expression of consciousness.
Sound and hearing.
Clear, subtle, light and immeasurable, ether is the ground for all material particles. It holds the
substance of the world as we know it.
The tangible expression of our human form resides in ether and ether permeates us, present in and around every particle of our being. The confluence of particles forms our physical shape and is most clearly defined by a continuous web of connective tissue housing our bones, muscles, nerves, blood vessels and organs. Through space we have a boundless etheric continuity into the vastness of ether.
The essence of our being – our thoughts, feelings, emotions and spirit – does not have material form, but those elements shape our physical form. Our connective tissue responds to the activity of our minds, making the expression of our essence visible and palpable.
An endless web in endless space, our form reveals our essence.
Form is the manifestation of essence.
The second element.
Consciousness in motion.
Feeling and touch.
Where there is life, there is motion. We feel air on our skin and motion in our bodies. Alive, we are in constant motion and when movement stops, life also stops.
There is movement within us as air and fluid circulate in cellular activity. Our body parts move in relationship to each other. Outwardly, we move in the world through space and time. Constriction of motion limits our experience and our expression of ourselves.
The spiral pattern of motion is fundamental from our DNA to the swirling galaxies. Moving from the rounded shapes of our joints, our limbs arc through space, describing segments of larger spiral patterns. Our body’s walking path of action in space can be traced as a wave-like horizontal spiral. The flow of the seasons and life itself, moving cyclically through time, can be seen as a spiraling journey.
Human movement occurs in three dimensional, asymmetrical spiral patterns.
The third element.
Radiant energy governing transformation.
Light and sight.
Fire is responsible for transformation with its radiant energy. Physically, it governs the metabolic processes and in the mind it regulates comprehension and understanding.
We are ongoing works in progress and continually transform throughout our lives. Turning food into energy, thought into action, feeling into emotion and ideas into material manifestation, we are masters of transformation.
In bodywork, a subtle combination of awareness, movement and heat transforms connective tissue. A dynamic alchemy between the practitioner’s hands and receiver’s body creates change in the body. Key to this transformative process, is the practitioner’s ability to receive guidance from the client’s connective tissue. Appropriate sequence and direction are directed from within, from the wisdom and experience of the client’s being.
The blueprint and inspiration for transformation lies within us.
Genuine change comes from within the individual.
The fourth element.
The river of life.
Our lymph, plasma and blood systems are rivers of transportation for nutrients and oxygen. Our connective tissue glistens with water droplets. Ultrasonic videography of muscle contraction has the appearance of flowing water.
In a way, we are flexible bags of water containing struts – fluid containers supported by our skeletons and propelled by bony paddles in water. Movement, often described as fluid, can be thought of as flowing energy within the boundaries of our external shape which mobilizes us in the world.
Life experience pulls us off center and pushes us off balance, creating restrictions in our connective tissue and forming log jams in the rivers of our motion. These restrictions limit access to our movement and to our full internal dimension. We become compromised.
The combination of bodywork and movement helps restore and maintain the space of ourselves, enabling us to move freely and inhabit our wholeness.
All living structure is a dance between fluid and fiber.
The fifth element.
Foundation, stability and support.
The earth element is about stability, structure and strength. In movement and life, the earth is our ever-present foundation. It constantly holds and supports us, offering a sense of permanence and place for our human form.
Gravity holds us to the earth and is very familiar. Its counter part, ground reaction force, is less well known. This equal and opposite force of gravity pushes up in response to our push down.
Through yielding and pushing, we access a spring like energy through our bodies. It is an action which gives rise to space within, it facilitates movement and even assists with lifting and carrying. Judith Aston has mastered this art in her work and teaches it beautifully in her trainings.
Gravity is our gift of place.