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Finding Calm in a Covid-19 World

 

The world has a way of periodically and dramatically shifting from ‘life as we know it’ into disorder and uncertainty – but most of us have never experienced as profound and widespread a shift as the one precipitated by covid-19. The constant state of uncertainty about who is infected, when social distancing will be lifted, when the pandemic will peak – all of that creates special challenges for us, especially when we are living in voluntary isolation. Foremost among those challenges is how to avoid sliding into spirals of anxiety, and cultivate a sense of ease in our lives. 

Philip Shepherd is a recognised international authority on embodiment and the founder of The Embodied Present Process (TEPP). TEPP is a series of practices that were developed by Philip to help people reunite the thinking of the head with the deep, present and calm intelligence of the body. Philip is passionate about helping people use their body as a vehicle to listen to the world, unlike the prevailing view of embodiment which involves sitting in the head and listening to the body, read on for some more advice on how to find calm in a covid-19 world...



The world has a way of periodically and dramatically shifting from ‘life as we know it’ into disorder and uncertainty – but most of us have never experienced as profound and widespread a shift as the one precipitated by covid-19. The constant state of uncertainty about who is infected, when social distancing will be lifted, when the pandemic will peak – all of that creates special challenges for us, especially when we are living in voluntary isolation. Foremost among those challenges is how to avoid sliding into spirals of anxiety, and cultivate a sense of ease in our lives.

In times like these, such ease can’t be found if you live in your head – it just endlessly loops and re-hashes in its quest for certainty, even when certainty isn’t available. But there’s another sort of knowing that is comfortable in the absence of such certainties – and that is the knowing of the body. The body experiences the present in its wholeness – something that can never be known by the head. To settle into the body and come to rest in what it knows is to come to rest in the present – in its calm, its clarity, and its spacious ease.

What prevents us from accessing that place of rest is our tendency to see the body as a machine controlled by the head. The intelligence of the body courses through every cell and processes a billion times more information than we can be consciously aware of. If we are to reunite with that intelligence, we need to release the body from the machine metaphor and discover its true nature: fluid, grounded, centred and spacious. To help you explore those decidedly non-mechanical qualities in your own being, here’s an explanation of each. As you begin to feel them in the body, they will help you come to rest in a calm ease that will serve you well.

Fluid

Our habits of tension consolidate the body and compartmentalise its energies, so that it can feel like inert matter. But that belies its true nature, which is essentially fluid: the body is 65% water. There is no part of the body that is not essentially fluid, because fluidity is necessary for life. To release the body into its natural fluidity is to release yourself into your life in this moment.

Grounded 

You have been summoned by the earth since the day you were born – invited by its gravitational pull to feel yourself at rest on it. When we are perched in the head we lose that connection. If you can release all body’s energy to that pull, allowing your energy to completely settle, you’ll recover that sense of being deeply at rest on the earth – as deeply as a baby rests on its mother’s breast. When you arrive on the earth in that way, you arrive in the present.


Centred

Ancient astronomers struggled to make sense of the heavens because they were mistaking the earth as the still centre of the universe. We similarly struggle to make sense of the world around us because we mistakenly treat the head as the centre of our being. But the head can make only superficial sense of the world, because it cannot feel the world in its wholeness. Only the still centre of the body can. Other cultures understand that, and find that still centre of being in the belly. The Japanese refer to that realm as ‘hara’. The shift to that deeper knowing is a shift into a deeper peace.

Spacious

When your thinking is confined to the head it becomes cramped and frantic. When it reunites with what the body knows, it joins the spaciousness of the present. It’s in that quality of spaciousness that the body’s intelligence is liberated – because its thinking does not happen in isolation from the present, but in partnership with it. To come home to that spaciousness is to feel yourself held by the companionship of the world around you.


Talk to one of our Travel Specialists on 1300 551 353 or contact us here to discuss tailor-making your perfect post coronavirus De-stress Holiday.