Body Consciousness


Using the mind to look for reality is delusion. Not using the mind to look for reality is awareness.

-Bodhidharma, “The Wake-Up Sermon”

Have you ever been in a state of mental agitation and noticed that sensations were taking place in your body, too?  Detaching from thoughts in those moments and just noticing the rising and falling away of sensations in the body can be a wonderful way to increase consciousness and awareness.  The body has a consciousness that the chatter of the mind often over-dominates and obscures.   When the narrative about something in the past or future is quieted, and one begins to notice sensations in the body that have arisen in a state of agitation (heat or tingling in the hands, face, or chest area, for example), one begins to notice that the body experiences energetically what the mind experiences through fear or grasping. Fear or grasping underlies and propels the mind’s narrative, whereas energetic agitation in the body rises and dissipates if it is allowed to just be without the mind feeding into it.  The body is a dynamic energetic system that has the potential to perceive itself energetically as a drop of water does in an ocean–as fluid with the universe.  In the place of awareness that is reached when the chatter of the mind is quieted, real consciousness may arise from just noticing the sensations occurring in the body.

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12 Comments

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12 responses to “Body Consciousness

  1. Really thought-provoking for me to read your post today Angela. As you know I live in a constant state of severe pain. I have come to the conclusion that I must do everything in my power to quiet my mind almost continuously because of what you describe here. It’s a pain-management tool for me. Unfortunately, that means I spend a lot of time in isolation, and meditation in order to merely survive. When I am launched into inevitable situations where my mind becomes fettered or stressful thoughts take hold, I absolutely find my levels of pain escalate. Absolutely an energetic link between body and mind. I am grateful I have this awareness…though do wish complete healing could occur with this work… Blessings your way today~ Wonderful post as always dear friend, RL

    • I really honor all that you have said here, dear Robyn. Becoming aware of energetic sensations in the body takes focus; I can only imagine how much more focus and clarity it must take to make your way through the pain “talking”. My heart goes out to you, friend, and I wish you love and healing.

      • So do appreciate that Angela… actually wrote a poem yesterday that really depicts the bodily sensations I encounter daily. Made it a more creative/lyrical piece, but is the first time I went this deep. Trying to embrace the pain – and not be so resistant through this kind of work. You are so right — the pain “talking” — exactly!! Thank you for your love and kindness dear one!

  2. Thank you so much for this Angela. The body holds so much wisdom and it’s easy to forget this when the mind is so noisy. Thank you for your much needed gentle reminders of awareness. Love-Julie

    • You said it perfectly, Julie–“the body holds so much wisdom.” Indeed, a kung fu master-teacher and dear friend once said in my presence, “The body is far more spiritual than the mind.” Blessings, friend, Angela

  3. Perfect for me today as I return from yoga practice…quieting the mind so hard for me…thanks for the reminder of how it works so magically…

  4. “Physical intelligence” is something that is seldom conceptualised, let alone discussed, so thanks for this. We need to educate ourselves, and educate others from a very young age, to pay proper undivided attention to our 5 senses, to our feelings and sensations, and not allow “thought” to dominate our every waking moment. Through our senses we become more aware of ourselves and everything around us; through our senses we can sometimes reach states of bliss and spiritual transcendence – experiences that are both therapeutic and restorative. Thanks for the reminder.

    • What a thoughtful contribution to the conversation! I agree– paying attention to the whole being from a very young age would bring about a tremendous shift in human consciousness. Thanks for dropping by and sharing your perspective.

  5. Lovely post. For me the body mirrors everything that is unconscious. When I’m sick, I meditate of the source of my illness, and it always trails back to an idea. As I deal with the issue, so I get better. The body is a mirror of the mind. Thanks so much.

  6. Victoria Pitts-Taylor

    love.

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