“I live in the body, not in Mauritius, London, India or South Africa” BKS Iyengar
Most of us spend our lives in our heads – not noticing the body, our faithful servant trying to catch up with whatever our minds decide is needed. It is only when we completely exhaust our bodies and they give up in protest (called flu, eczema, back pains) we start to pay attention to its messages.
We now know that bodies have their own intelligence – patients with transplanted organs report changes in their tastes or reaction for some time after the operation, suggesting that the organ carries the traits of character of the donor. Trauma specialists agree that memories of the traumatic experience are stored by our bodies, and recovery from trauma and PTSD includes releasing those from the body.
Mindfulness teaches us to be aware of our physical presence, to notice how our physical and emotional states are interrelated and interdependent, and ultimately to keep our bodies healthy.