Internal Martial Arts and the Healing of Trauma

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Xin_Yi
Mugging attempts are fairly common in New York City. I was cat sitting for some friends on Avenue A in Manhattan’s East Village in the fall of 2002 when someone attempted to rob me as I was walking along 7th Street. I immediately whipped out pepper spray and chased the attacker down the street. Next thing I knew the police had me up against the wall and were on the verge of taking me to jail for having pepper spray in my possession. I said to one of the officers “What am I supposed to do? Get beaten up because some trash thinks he’s going to mug me?” The officer responded by saying “This is New York. You just have to get used to it.” I thought to myself “Okay, fine …I’m going to go out and find the most ruthless master I can find to train with and next time I’m going to paralyze the son of a bitch.”

I stopped by one of the Martial Arts supply store in Chinatown shortly thereafter and asked the man behind the counter if he had any recommendations as to who I should train with. He then referred me to a rack of flyers telling me to take whatever I wanted. I went home with a whole stack of flyers that evening.

Some of the flyers were very attractive and included glossy photos of Shaolin Monks in all kinds of fighting postures. But there was one flyer printed on dingy looking yellow paper that caught my attention. Sifu Li Tai Liang’s flyer was written in very poor English, but it talked about his training in the Internal Martial Arts of Xin Yi Quan and Baguazhang. I had a knowing as I read the description that this is the person I wanted to train with. I called the next day and went later that evening to Li Shifu’s studio in Corona.

Xin Yi Quan and Baguazhang are highly complex systems of martial arts that require many years of disciplined practice to master. I didn’t feel that I was able to fully grasp what Sifu was teaching in the class setting so I began to train with him privately. Sifu has taught me a vast array of forms and practices since that time.

Sifu started talking to me one day about the Taoist belief that much of the soul does not fully incarnate within the physical body. He then said that intensive practice helps to draw more of the soul into the body. I had heard similar things in my early twenties while I was training with Horace Daukei, the last surviving traditional doctor among the Kiowa Indian tribe.

I had shut down on many levels as a means of coping with the traumas of my own childhood and adolescence. Trauma held within prevented me from being fully present in my body. A number of people commented on the fact that I was very dissociated and that I held a lot of anger and rage in my body. All of that pain finally erupted in my mid-twenties as I found myself involved with women who reenacted the past traumas. The debilitating emotional pain made it very difficult for me to function at times.

The heavy, painful and sometimes overwhelming feelings associated with anxiety, depression and emotionally traumatic issues can have a debilitating impact upon us. These stressful energies and emotions can be very hard on the body. These energies and emotions will in many instances express themselves through the body as some form of disease, illness or injury. One of the things I like about doing Chi Gong practice is that it infuses the body with clean vital life force. This life force has a nourishing and soothing quality that helps to offset the painfully debilitating emotions. The cleansing process that takes place as we draw vital life force into our body – mind also makes it easier for us to process our emotions.

Years later I was engaged to an ethnic Tamil woman from Sri Lanka. I was devastated when the relationship ended in the summer of 2007. I couldn’t really do much of anything else at the time other than breathe for hours with my awareness centered amid the painful feelings of loss. I would then do hours of intensive Chi Gong practices. Working with the pain in this way had the effect of opening doorways within. I began to experience a greater sense of connectedness with the higher power and that left me feeling euphoric at times. It was during that time that I came to a place where my sense of wellbeing did not depend upon another person.

Some people reading this chapter will wonder if intensive martial arts and Chi Gong practice alone will heal trauma. No, it will not. It’s common for people who follow the various spiritual traditions to attempt to bypass the emotional and psychological aspects of their development. People who have attained mastery in the Internal Martial Arts, Chi Gong and in various Yogic disciplines have often acted out in various ways because of their failure to do the ground work necessary to address their issues and deal with their own emotions. This failure to build a strong healthy foundation on an emotional level accounts for much of the dysfunction playing out in various spiritual communities.

Chronic stress has an adverse effect on the brain, especially the hippocampus located near the middle of the brain, which plays a major role in our ability to retain information. The hippocampus facilitates the process of converting new information briefly retained in the prefrontal cortex into working memory. The hippocampus is especially vulnerable to ongoing emotional stress, because of the damaging effects of cortisol. The vast majority of the brain’s production of new neurons and the formation of new neural-connections take place within the hippocampus. The hippocampus loses neurons and shrinks in size when the neurons are flooded with cortisol. Cortisol stimulates the amygdala’s fight or flight reaction, while impairing the hippocampus’ reasoning capabilities. We go into self-preservation mode as our attention is redirected to the reactive survival oriented emotions and that impairs our ability to take in new information. That’s why we tend to forget things when we’re stressed out.

Exercise increases the production of the chemical messengers such as norepinephrine that promote healthy cognitive function, learning and positive emotional states. Exercise also helps to balance our physiology by stimulating our heart rate and improving the quality of our sleep.

I can see that lots of people are still holding all kinds of stressful emotions in their body despite the fact that they work out consistently. This unprocessed emotional baggage is clearly evidenced in the high incidence of digestive disorders, TMJ and other stress related health issues. I have also known dancers and yoga practitioners who had a strong presence and aliveness about them, but were totally neurotic because of their failure to deal with their own issues and emotions.

Doing Chi Gong practices doesn’t mean that all the painful and anxious feelings are just going to go away. One of the things I noticed as I began to work consistently with the various Chi Gong practices is that it made it possible for me to draw the life force into the parts of my body I had disconnected from that were holding a lot of painful emotion, trauma or other stresses. In many instances I find that Chi Gong practice brings the emotions held in the body that I hadn’t been able to access up to the surface so that I can process them. I like the fact that it helps me to get in touch with feelings that would otherwise be difficult to access.

Learning all these highly complex forms encourages the development of new neural pathways. These additional neural faculties also facilitate emotional processing and that makes it easier for us to work through our feelings and bring issues to resolution.

It can be very difficult, if not all together impossible, to process our feelings when we are not fully inhabiting our bodies. Training in the Internal Martial Arts has helped me to become more fully present in my physical body and the world in which I live. The changes that have taken place as a result of my practice are making it easier for me to move through the world with a greater sense of resilience and self-assurance.

One of the things I like most about the Internal Martial Arts such as Xin Yi Quan and Baguazhang is that it incorporates Chi Gong into the fighting forms so that the practitioner is always building the life force within the body. I do lots of Chi Gong practice and find that it nourishes and strengthens the internal organs of my body. I feel cleaner, healthier and a greater sense of resilience.

I encourage anyone to learn and practice any of the Internal Martial Arts. People with physical limitations can easily do Chi Gong and Tai Chi. Those who are more physically able that are up for the challenge can experience even greater benefit by training in disciplines such as Xin Yi Quan and Baguazhang.

I find that Chi Gong practice helps me to access my feelings, but it doesn’t facilitate the actual processing of the feelings. Chi Gong can be a highly valuable healing tool and yet there is no one approach that will address all of our needs. I make much greater progress when I combine various healing practices. I make a consistent effort on a daily basis to do the groundwork needed to build a strong and healthy foundation. A big part of that involves a whole different kind of practice of breathing with my awareness centered in the midst of any feelings and bodily sensations that arise in response to what is taking place in my life. Breathing into the feelings in this way facilitates a process that enables me to digest my life experience and any subsequent feelings that arise.

I have done lots of deep tissue body work and have worked with a number of powerful healers whenever the opportunity presented itself. I have gone on numerous vision quests, which are a traditional Native American healing practice that involves going out to fast alone in the mountains for four days and nights without food or water. It was during the individual healing sessions and vision quests that I could feel the parts of myself that were holding trauma being transformed. It’s the combination of all of these practices that have made it possible come as far along as I have.

©Copyright 2014 Ben Oofana. All Rights Reserved. This content may be copied in full, with copyright, creation and contact information intact, without specific permission.

Ben Oofana is a healer who began his training with Horace Daukei, one of the last surviving traditional doctors among the Kiowa Indian tribe. Call (913) 927-4281 to learn more or to schedule an individual session.

Whining Only Brings You More of What You Don’t Want

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Whining
The hardships and misfortunes we encounter along the way can sometimes cause us to feel powerless to effect change in our lives. We sometimes feel compelled to talk about our problems because we want to be understood and know that someone is there for us. Sharing our feelings can in some instances help to alleviate our suffering. The problem here is that many of us don’t know when to stop. Some of us have a tendency to go on and on, but that never brings us to a place of resolution. If anything, it makes us feel more anxious.

Myra said at one point that it felt so natural for her to whine. I told her that It feels natural because it’s something she’s grown accustomed to as a result of having done so for most of her life. You’ve learned to cope over the years by resisting the painful feelings associated with what’s not working in your life. It can feel scary and overwhelming as these feelings make their way to the surface, but you will realize they’re not as bad as they seem once you allow yourself to fully experience them. You will get to a calmer and more resourceful space much sooner when you allow yourself to fully experience those feelings.

Myra then wanted to know how we fall into a pattern of whining. I explained to her that some of us grew up with parents or other family members who were habitual whiners. We have a tendency to internalize the energies, emotions and traits of our parents.

We may have suffered tremendously as a result of difficult life circumstances. Whining is often an attempt to cope with or alleviate our suffering and yet it is one of the worst things we can possibly do, because it adds to our misery by contributing to a growing sense of powerlessness. And that causes us feel helpless to change the realities of our daily lives. We whine so much about the people or circumstances affecting us and then it gradually becomes a habit.

We can easily fall into habitual patterns of whining if we’re not taking constructive steps to facilitate our healing. Whining generates lots of heavy toxic energies and emotions that get trapped within our bodies. Our true essence sometimes gets buried underneath the many layers of toxic thought and feeling. The toxicity can become so pervasive in some instances that it completely takes over us.

Caught up in the drama

We typically suspend disbelief any time we go to a movie in order to allow ourselves to become captivated by the story unfolding upon the screen. In a similar way we allow ourselves to become captivated by the stories unfolding upon the screen of our mind. The problem with getting caught up in the negative scenarios playing out in our minds is that they are often generated by parts of us that are very wounded. Buying into to these distorted representations of reality can easily send us into a downward spiral. It’s important for us to understand that the parts of our mind generating these negative scenarios are only a small portion of the self and not the totality of who we are.

Resisting our mind’s internal dialog

Many of us try to resist the negative internal dialog by either ignoring it or trying to make it go away. Whatever we resist will persist. The thoughts and images we spend so much time resisting and the subsequent feelings that arise in response to them will grow in magnitude.

We cannot completely silence the parts of our mind that like to chatter, but we do have some measure of control over how much attention we pay to them. We need to acknowledge the negative dialog while primarily keeping our attention focused on the underlying feelings behind those thoughts.

Disconnecting from our feelings and physical bodies

Thinking obsessively is a defense that prevents us from fully experiencing our true feelings. We go up into our heads and by doing so we disconnect from our feelings and physical bodies. Our internal dialog elicits more stressful feelings and that feeds the negative thought patterns. We then find ourselves caught up in a self-perpetuating negative feedback loop.

We cannot possibly process our feelings when we’re spinning around in circles in our heads. We may experience the surface most levels of our anger and frustration, and yet we’re disconnected from the deeper pain underneath that drives our negative internal dialog.

The feelings that we fail to process accumulate within our bodies and that builds the negative emotional charge around the issues that have created so much suffering in our lives. Reinforcing the patterns in this way only causes them to become more deeply entrenched. This negativity causes our body – mind to become very dense. Our presence will begin to feel heavy and toxic.

Pain and stress that accumulates within our bodies has a very desensitizing effect. People who tend to whine a lot don’t realize how they’re hurting themselves and others. They’re not just wasting people’s time. They’re literally sucking the life force out of their bodies.

How do we break the habit of whining?

We all suffer as a result of the hurts, disappointments and losses we experience over the course of our lives. Sometimes we need to open up and share what we’re feeling. The problem is that those of us who don’t know when to stop can easily fall into the trap of whining. It can take tremendous discipline to break ourselves out of the habit. We need to start by making an effort to become mindful by paying attention to our thought processes while we’re in the midst of whatever it is that we’re doing.

Negative thought patterns are driven by feelings held within the body. Deeply ingrained stories and patterns can be had to break. Some of us have to be very disciplined by making a consistent effort to refocus our attention on the feelings behind our mind’s internal dialog any time the negative thought patterns emerge. We need to take a step back from the drama whenever we catch ourselves whining by asking ourselves “What are the feelings driving these thoughts?” Is it anger, disappointment, fear, frustration or sadness?

We have to diminish the emotional intensity for the negative thought patterns to lose their power. The negative internal dialog loses its power as we process the charged emotions that drive our obsessive thinking. We need to teach ourselves to go straight into the underlying feelings whenever we catch ourselves whining.

Breathing softly and deeply while immersing our awareness within our feelings and bodily sensations gets us down into our bodies. It also awakens the innate healing intelligence residing within our body – mind. This healing intelligence makes it possible for us to diffuse and then digest the feelings of fear, anger, frustration, panic, desperation and other charged emotions generating the negative dialog so that we can come to terms with what is.

The digestive process I’m describing may take a while. There may be instances when we have to continue to breathe into the feelings for hours. And we will have to resume the practice at other times when as the same feeling resurface. The feelings will gradually lighten up as we continue to breathe into them. And the more we do so, the faster we will be able to work through the issues concerning us.

Running in Circles or Digesting

Myra then asked me “How can I tell whether I’m just running circles in my head or actually digesting the feeling. I then told Myra that we have a tendency to go over the same thoughts repeatedly when we’re stuck in our heads.

We will develop greater sensitivity as we make a consistent practice of going beyond the obsessive mental chatter by breathing softly and deeply while centering our awareness in the middle of our feelings and bodily sensations. That will make it possible for us to actually feel the distress that we’re generating within our bodies when we whine.

We may even say to ourselves “Okay, I’m going to feel absolutely horrible if I buy into that cognitive frame because it’s only going to generate lots of painful feelings. And those feelings will elicit more negative thoughts which in turn will generate more painful feelings.

The digestive process that takes place as we breathe into our feelings and bodily sensations feels completely different. Breathing with our awareness centered in our feelings and bodily sensations takes us to the underlying source of our distress. Our minds begins to quiet down so that we can say what needs to be said with fewer words.

The innate healing intelligence residing within facilitates a digestive process. Feelings that surface will initially intensify and then gradually soften and become more diffuse and go through a variety of other permutations. Conflicting thoughts and feelings sort themselves out more readily making it easier for us to bring issues to a place of resolution. The resulting assimilative process facilitates new learning and growth.

Coming to terms with what is

Whining and complaining are forms of resistance. We don’t want to accept who we are, where we are or the realities of our lives. We’re resisting the pain associated with our limitations. We resist the feelings of fear, hurt, anger, grief and loss that arise when our lives don’t seem to be working or when we don’t have the relationship we want.

True healing can only take place when we come to terms with what is. Teaching ourselves to become present by allowing ourselves to fully experience the feelings that arise in response to what’s taking place in our lives helps us to develop greater equanimity.

Some of the difficulties we’re faced with are going to evoke feelings, of sadness, frustration and disappointment. Breathing into these feelings will enable us to come to a place of greater acceptance for what is. With continued practice we will learn to do what is feasible and then we’ll also know when it’s time to let go. And no matter what happens in our outer world, we will experience a growing sense of connectedness to a greater source within.

Coming to terms with what is doesn’t mean that we’re going to just give up and roll over. It’s still important for us to be proactive by continually striving to create what it is that we want in our lives. Our resolve to do what needs to be done will grow stronger. We may not necessarily like the realities that we’re forced to contend with, but we will become more accepting in ways that will enables us to work constructively within the context that we find ourselves.

Transforming the whining habit

1. Make a concerted effort to be mindful of your thoughts and feelings as you go about your day.
2. Ask yourself “What are the feelings behind all that drama?” whenever you catch yourself whining or caught up in some drama.
3. Notice where these feelings are situated in your body.
4. Breathe softly and deeply while centering your awareness in the middle of these feelings and bodily sensations. Continue to follow the feelings and sensations as they go through their progression.
5. Ask your subconscious questions like “How can I (fill in the blank with whatever it is that you want to do or accomplish)? What steps can I be taking to make this happen? Completely let go of any attachment to getting an answer after asking the question. Your subconscious will give you little insights and flashes of inspirations along the way.
6. Be proactive by taking constructive steps on a daily basis to create whatever it is that you truly desire in life.

It can sometimes be very difficult to break out of longstanding negative patterns on our own. I have received sessions from a number of powerful healers along the way and have gone on many vision quests, a traditional Native American healing practice that involves going out to fast alone in the mountains for four days and nights without food or water. I can always feel a powerful presence working to heal the emotional wounds and free me of limiting patterns.

The presence working through me during the individual healing sessions will enable you to digest the backlog of negatively charged emotion held within the body and heal the deep emotional wounds. Habitual negative patterns will dissolve. New resources and capabilities will emerge. Your responses to the challenges of everyday life will become healthier and more adaptive.

©Copyright 2013 Ben Oofana. All Rights Reserved. This content may be copied in full, with copyright, creation and contact information intact, without specific permission.

Ben Oofana is a healer who began his training with Horace Daukei, one of the last surviving traditional doctors among the Kiowa Indian tribe. To learn more go to http://www.doiohm.com Call (913) 927-4281 to learn more or to schedule an individual session.

Freeing Ourselves from the Vicious Cycle of Obsessive Thought

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obsessive thoughtsWe can easily fall into patterns of obsessive thought when we’re under a great deal of stress. And when that happens, we tend to go over and over the same thoughts and feelings. Obsessive thinking seldom brings about any true resolution of the matter. Thinking about the matters that are of concern to us is only useful to a certain point and after that we’re only recycling what we’ve already gone over. Circular thinking creates a vicious cycle by causing our anxiety to escalate and that only intensifies our obsessive thought patterns. Circular thinking becomes a trap that keeps us stuck in our heads. We become fixated and that prevents us from going through the internal processes needed to facilitate growth; therefore we continue to cycle through the same dramas.

There are many different levels of activity operating within our minds. Powerful currents of memory, thought and emotion operate beneath the surface of our conscious awareness. These forces are the drivers that create the underlying themes that play out in our lives and shape our personality. And then there are levels of surface thought and feeling that run through our conscious mind. Most people live their lives caught up in the surface drama, but they never really get to the underlying source of what’s driving them.

I make concerted effort to be aware of my own internal processes. I’ll force myself to stop whenever I notice myself going over and over the same thoughts. I then ask myself, “What are the deepest feelings behind all of this drama or mental chatter?” And then I start breathing into any feelings that I can gain access to.

Breathing into the feelings as they arise takes me right to the source of the issues by helping me to access the deeper levels of thoughts and feelings along with the memories of experiences pertaining to any unresolved issues. Pieces start coming together as I begin to recognize the connection between my current situation and the unresolved issues from earlier parts of my life. The greater healing intelligence residing within facilitates a process that enables me to digest these thoughts, feelings and experiences. It also brings consciousness into parts of my psyche that have been playing out limiting or destructive patterns. Continued practice has made me conscious of patterns of behavior that I was previously oblivious to, and has allowed me to change the way that I move through the world.

Breathing into the anxiety and other feelings that lie beneath the anxious mental chatter diffuses the underlying emotional force that fuels obsessive thoughts. It’s important for us to understand that there will still be instances where we find ourselves getting caught up in the dramas unfolding in our lives. We will at times have to refocus our attention on the underlying feelings.

Obsessive thought exists along a continuum. Everyone experiences obsessive thoughts at some time along the way. We sometimes worry about the well-being of friends and family. We obsess about our love interests any time we wait for their call or hope they will reciprocate our feelings or try to figure out why act as they do. Those of us who struggle to get by often worry about whether we will be able to make enough money to make ends meet.

Chronic patterns of obsessive thought often arise in response to the emotional wounding that occurs at various stages in our lives. This wounding is compounded by the fact that we did not possess the understanding or resources necessary to facilitate healing.

Overwhelming or traumatically stressful events can easily elicit powerful emotional states that in turn trigger powerful biochemical reactions within the brain. The combination of powerful emotions and the brains biochemical response often becomes a habituated body-mind reaction that can easily be triggered by situations, people or issues that act as a reminder of the initial traumas or stressful life events.

The practice that I’m sharing with you has been an important part of my healing process. I soon realized that I didn’t possess all the resources I needed to completely heal on my own. I began to work with a number of exceptionally powerful healers whenever the opportunity presented itself. And then I began to go on the vision quest, a traditional Native American practice that involves going out to fast alone in the mountains for four days and nights without food or water. It was during the vision quests that I healed and developed the gifts that have made it possible for me to facilitate healing in others.

The presence working through me during the individual healing sessions does a “reset” of the entire body-mind system. The emotional triggers associated with obsessive thought are dismantled and replaced with newer healthier models that facilitate more adaptive and resourceful responses to life’s challenges. You will become much calmer and develop a more grounded presence as the highly charged emotions fueling your obsessive thoughts are diffused and then digested. New resources begin to emerge that will enable you to become far more effective in all areas of your life. You will also develop the capacity to relax and let go when needed so that you can better flow with life as it unfolds.

©Copyright 2013 Ben Oofana. All Rights Reserved. This content may be copied in full, with copyright, creation and contact information intact, without specific permission.

Ben Oofana is a healer who began his training with Horace Daukei, one of the last surviving traditional doctors among the Kiowa Indian Tribe. The individual sessions will free you of patterns of obsessive thought by facilitate healing of the deep emotional wounds. Call (913) 927-4281 to learn more or to schedule an individual session.

Replenishing the Depleted Body and Mind

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fatigue
Harlan, like so many of us nowadays, is working way too many hours. He’s built a successful business over the past ten years. He’s made lots of sacrifices and has accomplished a great deal, but his body and mind are definitely paying the price. His days consist primarily of working at the computer and spending time on the phone with customers. That becomes very depleting, literally sucking the life force out of his body. Harlan also has a tendency to live in his head and that leaves him very disconnected from his feelings and physical body. I could definitely sense the depletion as I looked into his body. Harlan’s kidneys had become so depleted that it was interfering with the quality of his sleep. He has to rely on sleeping pills to knock himself out at the end of the day.

I began the session by having Harlan breathe into the sense fatigue that he described throughout his body. After some time Harlan told me that he was experiencing bloating in his abdomen and inflammation in his joints. Unprocessed emotions and other stresses that had accumulated and the resulting impairment of his digestion were causing the bloating.

The bloating and inflammation began to subside as Harlan continued to breathe into the physical sensations within his body. He began feel the life force flowing through his body as that happened.

Harlan works very hard and yet he’s not doing much of anything to counteract the stress. He told me that he was doing much better a few months prior when was practicing Tai Chi consistently, but had since gone downhill. Harlan needs to be doing practice every day. I can always see the wear and tear that occurs within his body where there are long gaps between sessions. Harlan has tremendous difficulty sticking with healthy food choices and the daily discipline that would enable him to maintain his health. His inability to stick with the foods and practices that nourish his body and mind has a lot to do with his tendency to disconnect from his feelings. Unprocessed emotions and other stresses that accumulate within his body create internal resistance and inertia. That’s why Harlan often feels burned out and is often lacking in enthusiasm.

I have worked with a number of people like Harlan that push themselves to the point of exhaustion. Many will let months go by between sessions because of their unwillingness to make any kind of serious investment of time and energy in their health. And that’s why so many people get into serious trouble with their health. I feel concerned by the inertia or deadening that I see, especially when I can tell that it’s causing their bodies to break down. I do the best I can to recognize people’s limitations and to reach them where they’re at.

The deadening that was taking place in Harlan’s abdominal region was notable. But I could feel the presence working through me during healing session dissolving the armor by softening the abdominal organs. The internal organs become more alive and responsive whenever I work with Harlan and that brings him back to life.

The sessions revive Harlan and get his body back on track. He sleeps better afterwards, his digestion improves and his enthusiasm for life is renewed. He has said on many occasions that he feels revived as though he had slept for a long time or taken a much needed vacation. Harlan just needs to slow down enough to be present with his feelings and physical body. He needs to breathe into the feelings and sensations that he experiences within his body on a daily basis and show up for the healing sessions at least once a month.

The abdominal region is a critically important part of the foundation that enables us to be firmly rooted in our bodies. Many of us are overwhelmed by the demands of our daily lives. We may experience abdominal bloating as the physical and emotional toxins accumulate within our digestive tract. Unprocessed feelings, the stresses of daily life and physical toxins have a deadening effect upon this part of our body and our overall body-mind consciousness. The deadening of the consciousness in our midsection cuts us off from a critical source of nourishment that is needed to replenish our bodies and minds. People often get into serious trouble as that happens.

The abdominal region affects all the organs and systems of the body. The enteric nervous system, which is embedded in the lining of the gastrointestinal system, contains a hundred million neurons that produce the same neurotransmitters found within the brain. Sixty to Seventy percent our immune system is located in the gut as a vast network of lymph tissue referred to as GALT (gut associated lymphatic tissue). We need to keep this region of our body and all the organs contained therein soft, fluid and alive.

Harlan said something about finding someone to learn Chi Gong from. Chi Gong is a very powerful and effective practice for developing one’s body and mind and I do a lot of it on a daily basis. But Chi Gong practice isn’t anywhere near as effective for helping us to digest the toxic emotional residue and other stresses that get trapped within our bodies. Breathing into the feelings and sensations enables us to get deep down inside the cells and organs to digest the emotional residue and other stresses held within in a way that Chi Gong practice won’t.

Chi Gong and the practice I teach of having people breathe into the feelings and sensations present within their bodies are two very different approaches to healing and developing one’s body and mind. I encourage people to do both forms of practice. The practice of breathing into our feelings and sensations is one of the most powerful means we have available of reconnecting with our bodies. We need to make this form of meditation a part of our daily practice.

Many of us are working and commuting excessively long hours, spending way too much time on the internet and not getting enough rest. Our bodies and minds can easily become overwhelmed by the stress. The energies of fatigue or exhaustion, unprocessed emotions and the stresses of everyday life can easily get trapped in our bodies unless we make a conscientious effort to digest them. We need to make time to be fully present with our bodies by breathing into our tiredness, fatigue and exhaustion that we experience throughout our bodies.

Much of that stress accumulates within the abdomen. We also need to be breathing while focusing our attention on any fullness, deadening or congestion held in our abdomen. Breathing into our feelings and bodily sensations awakens the innate healing intelligence residing within our bodies and minds. Consistent practice will help to bring our depleted body back to life. It will also increase our life force.

Native Americans didn’t have access to the modern medical interventions that many depend upon today. They relied upon the forces of nature to effect healing within the body and mind that would not have otherwise been possible. I spent a number of years training with Horace Daukei, the last surviving traditional doctor among the Kiowa Indian tribe and have since continued with the vision quest.

The individual healing sessions have profound regenerative effects upon the body and mind. The presence working through me repairs damage within the physical and subtle bodies. Stagnant emotions and other stresses held within the body are digested. Depleted bodies literally come back to life.

©Copyright 2013 Ben Oofana. All Rights Reserved. This content may be copied in full, with copyright, creation and contact information intact, without specific permission.

Ben Oofana is a healer who began his training with Horace Daukei, one of the last surviving traditional doctors among the Kiowa Indian tribe. The practices he teaches and individual healing sessions replenish and heal depleted bodies and minds bringing them back to life. Call (913) 927-4281 to learn more or to schedule an individual session.