Somatic Experiencing with Tension Release Exercises. I tried my first session today, I had asked to do a class as I have had a real sense of being ready to ‘birth’ some trauma old wounds and the class was this morning. Afterwards I felt tired but great. My body continued quietly shaking for 30 mins after we finished and after about 5 mins after we finish I could feel it growing spontaneously and I asked it to be quiet. The exercises teach you how to go into the trauma in a very careful way, through the body not through the mind, to not interfere and reduce the movements that come up (we do this because of fear) and to let them be, to acknowledge them and also stay present with the pleasant experiences in the body and to be a container to both. Like Feldenkrais lessons you stop for rest at regular intervals to compare how the body feels when activated and how it feels before. The tremors cave in pulses, waves, from the legs and up the body, heat was generated and stayed fiercely and then moved on. The point is not to push away or grasp at any sensation.
Levine’s book is titled ‘Waking the Tiger’ and I could see a beautiful orange tigers huge head so clearly and I imagined running from him, I imagined running from a workshop 15 years ago when Susan Skye had talked about old pain, I imagined a woman who told me that she goes to work with Ringu Tulku and each time gives into her desire to run away, finding herself exhausted and lost on the moors behind Samye Lings. I knew the tiger wasn’t real, I didn’t feel the terror I would feel at moving from a real threat, but could imagine heroically delivering myself from the fear of my old wounds (the imagined tiger, Susan Skye and Ringu Tulku are not threats but opportunities to open up) my legs ran and ran outside of my conscious control but within my conscious awareness. I could surrender and now I feel deeply at peace with myself, a little tired, in need of some sunshine and a wander, but nothing traumatic. And my body feels like its had a pleasant workout and a massage after. Yes, I’m off to lie in the sun.