Is relaxation a skill?

An excerpt from Chapter VI – The Theory of Lightness: The Physical Facet – out of my book, A Glimpse of Heaven: The Philosophy of True Health…

Definitive utilization of the notion of ‘true health through true responsibility’ necessitates substantive philosophical insight into the practical application of the physical tenet of the Theory of Lightness. The theory has a distinct association with ‘true relaxation’ – an ardent appreciation and genuine enjoyment of a lightness of being within one’s body, mind, and spirit. Realization of this high level of relaxation is inclusive of a sense of physical lightness, whether one’s body is stationary or moving. It is commonly accepted in contemporary empirical research that various types of stress and anxiety have a dramatic negative effect on our mental and physical health in myriad fashions. In promoting a genuine ‘lightness of being’ based on healthful practical philosophical objective insight, we can learn to control the stressors and/or anxiety which trigger a heavy sense of being weighted-down.

Light movement, or relaxation within movement, is graceful, relaxed, fluid, connected – not unlike a therapeutic formula for treating stress and anxiety. Such movement reflects one’s ability to move as if one’s mind, and each of one’s body parts enjoy a deeply enhanced intrinsic connection, e.g., not moving in heavy, stiff, disjointed, or jerky fashions. The ability or inability to do so is a true gauge of one’s ability to control stress and anxiety. In these traditions, various relevant notions are handed-down:

~ Those who step lightly, move mindfully and fluidly, know lightness of body, mind, and spirit.

~ Relax the stepping foot – step light, soft, not assuming that the floor of the stage of this comedy and drama is true.

~ If the elbows and knees are bent, and the hands, face, shoulders, and feet are relaxed, you are relaxed, and more and more able to curtain unhealthful anxiety-provoking thought.

~ Hurriedness is a frame of mind and an addiction.

~ Flexibility is life, stiffness is death.

~ The practice of refined abdominal breathing has made many a sick person healthy and many a healthy person remain so…once one becomes able to do it naturally, not just intentionally, it is a gift to oneself whose value cannot be measured.

~ Abdominal breathing in proper timing with gross motor movement is promoting of physical and mental dexterity, genuine strength of being, and
extended youthfulness/resiliency.

~ Consumption of food is a basic need, but our desire of food should not consume us and destroy our health.

~ Poor eating habits, lack of mobility, and overt stress and anxiety, impede circulatory quality of blood, lymph, bioelectric energy, and uptake of oxygen in our bodies…the root of a significant majority of maladies. The inherited natural make-up of our bodies may promote a greater propensity toward realizing particular maladies – you this, I that. Albeit, the fashion by which we treat our bodies both agitates our natural make-up and complements it.

~ Lightning bolts do strike, but most of the time, the heavy pernicious health difficulties we experience are by our own doing…nothing is of greater import than taking genuine responsibility for our own health and wellbeing: It is the right thing for the right sake in myriad fashions.

~ Our bodies evolved moving a lot, not sitting a lot.

When our bodies are not exercised or utilized in fashions congruent with the intrinsic needs which prompted it to evolve into (or be created into) its defined physiology, such a lack of exercise or use prompts it to deteriorate, ‘fall apart.’ The human body evolved walking, running, hunting, gathering, fighting, sleeping, among other things. It did not evolve doing a lot of sitting. Symptoms of this deterioration are reflected in various types or combinations of poor health and weakness – inclusive of disease and a lack of appropriate balance, strength, and relaxed deft coordination.

While most of us obviously are not going to be hunting, gathering, and fighting, etc., we do enjoy avenues by which we can move/exercise our bodies in ways which our bodies were intended. Walking, jogging, running, dancing, stretching, are means of this. — Dr. Glen Hepker


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