Contraction – Expansion

This is similar to the ‘seed approach’. The only difference is that instead of taking the idea of a seed and allowing your being to explore it spontaneously, you take the idea first of contraction, then expansion.

This is to do with fundamental life processes. If you watch your chest for a while you will observe its contractions and expansions in breathing. Your heart too constantly contracts and expands. Sleeping and waking contract and expand consciousness. Life and death are an expansion and contraction. Perhaps even the universe goes through such a cycle.

1 – Create and stand in your space – with or without music.

2 – Observe for a minute or so the contraction and expansion of your chest. As you do so allow the feeling of letting yourself drop more fully into the contraction and emptiness. Contraction might also be defined as giving up, feeling empty of any urge to do anything, dropping out of social activity. Allow your body to find its own spontaneous expression of this in posture, movement, and even sound if there is an urge to do so.

3 – If you find it difficult to find a spontaneous posture of contraction, try kneeling on the floor and going down into a heap or curling up in a ball. This is a position of contraction.

4 – As you go into your expression of contraction hold in mind that you will wait in the contraction to see if any urge toward expansion occurs. This may take time, or not happen at all, so be willing to wait.

5 – Explore how your body as a whole contracts. What does this mean as far as a posture or movement is concerned? What does it feel like inside? What does it mean in your life?

6 – If movements and feelings arise leading to expansion, go along with them. Just observe and let yourself take in what arises.

7 – If there are conflicts or painful memories holding you in one of the attitudes – contraction or expansion – these will be discharged during the practice.

Using the pathway of expansion and contraction heals any area of your being locked in one or the other of these opposites. The practice enables you to learn to move easily in and out of these opposites that play such a big part in life. If you are stuck in an expansionary attitude, then the practice will balance you – or vice versa.

Copyright © 1999-2010 Tony Crisp | All rights reserved