Wednesday, February 27, 2008

neck massage: God heals

As I already wrote, a chiropractor yanked my neck and seriously injured it. It was so painful, I was scared. I am still dealing with it.

First I tried having someone fix it. Tough luck... The last chiropractor I went to was proclaimed the best in Honolulu and I went for 6 sessions and paid 240$ and nothing. He helped ZERO. The only good thing is that in his office I found the newspaper with the belly dance class article and went to the class and had a great time - and am blossoming ever since, I found what I like to do. So, I do believe the chiropractor has good intentions and is a healer on some level. He just doesn't know how to fix my neck.

Recently I gave up on others and started doing work on my own, going through each muscle and making sure it is free of trigger points. I found so many.... and am feeling better.

I really would like to find professional help of someone who can help me with this. The back is hard to reach on my own.

Tonight I found a trigger point in scalenes and it was soooooo ouchy, I was in a daze, and that's when I heard the Hawaiian voices, they were giving me instructions, in Hawaiian. My cat came to look to see what was happening. Someone was there.

I don't speak Hawaiian yet but seems like I will have to :)

As I was sitting on the beach, I did the sufi zihkrs - for those of you who know what it is - it is a movement of the neck, doing a rotation across the chest and then looking up and down - and chanting the words. What I chanted was the arabic phrase that means something like this in loose translation:

GOD IS EVERYWHERE

GOD IS EVERYTHING

THERE IS NOTHING BUT GOD.

And I felt better afterwards. There is something very profound when we contemplate what this sentence means.

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parents, relationships, health

Tonight I was watching the sunset on the beach when an older man walked by, with a teenage girl and a small girl in a tow. The man was probably their father or some kind of close relative, the way it felt. He was gray-haired and walked totally self-absorbed, looking down, definitely closed off and VERY remote, he never turned around or said anything to the girls, and the two girls just tagged at his back, with solemn, quiet, sulky faces. Teenage girl held the hand of the small girl, and they just walked, like in a procession.

The man did notice *me* and perked up. Sure - an attractive woman sitting on the beach. That would give HIM some attention and some amusement. But he wasn't giving any attention to the girls who walked behind him.

I saw them sit down further down the beach, again, the man sat looking at the ocean and never said a word or turned to his girls. As if they didn't exist!!!!! wow. But he did notice me, so obviously he was perfectly capable of noticing. Ah what a jerk... so little girls are not worthy of his attention, but an attractive woman is? I was going to give a different message to the girls. I was thinking: what to say? If I scold him, the girls might not like that. I need to somehow say hi to the girls and acknowledge them. It's kinda rough having a lomi therapist on the beach .... :) We tend to think about healing all the time. God only Knows for sure. We just do what we are asked to. I was asked to send some message to the girls and tell them that they exist and are worthy of attention.

On the way back, at least the small girl was happy and chattering and even had a flower in her hair, but she still didn't run or play although she was cheerfully talking about running. When they were passing by, I smiled and said to her: let's see how fast you can run!!! And she just LOOKED at me with total surprise. The teenage girl forced herself to keep on looking at the sand. The man didn't even hear me, he was already far in the front.

When the little girl turned to me in surprise, I saw her face - pale face with big black bags under her eyes. Not the rosy complexion of smiley, happy, healthy, robust little girl.
The teenage girl also looked pale and sad, and had a feeling about her of ... being fed up, quietly.

So, you want healthy kids? You want to be healthy? GIVE THEM ATTENTION. Give quality attention to yourself. Treat yourself well. Take yourself for the hand and a walk on the beach, and talk to yourself nicely. Run on the sand. Touch the Ocean. Love. Connect. Have fun.

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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The way to health is to be Open

There is someone whom my mom dubbed "teenage star" and rightfully so. Although the person is over 40, they hang out with 20 yr olds, do late teenage kinds of things like parties and concerts, and dress and behave as if they just that age when they are old enough to drive and go out at night and they DO!

So, anyways, I had a brief feeling that the teenage star was after me. It is very difficult to figure out when a teenager is after you, because they don't talk. They kinda hang around you, coming closer physically, but never talk to you. If I smile, they come closer. If I frown, they go away further. I suppose they are not really skilled in talking, and are very skilled in physical attraction.

Well, more mature people - like myself :) - I am not giving away my age though :) are into talking. That is what makes a relationship interesting and meaningful - sharing, talking things over, and growing together. Yes of course the physical is there too, but it's not THE most important thing. It is the spice in the soup, makes the dish tasty. The spiritual connection is the dish. That's the basis. The spices need the main dish, we cannot eat just the spices alone.... The dish has to be there first.

Talking is necessary because that is a way to share and grow. Especially when problems and issues arise. That's where "marriage is the hardest form of yoga". To hang in there and be honest and be gentle and communicate with another from the open heart is NOT exactly the easiest thing in the world, and yet, it is necessary. Our partners are there so that we can Work on ourselves.

Recently I was fortunate to be in a relationship like that and it was very nice. It builds trust and a very deep connection, and then it is extremely productive for self growth. The subjects we talked about and issues we have resolved made us grow and blossom very quickly. There was no fear of saying "I love you" and actually living that. That's a mature partner, an adult man. (well until it got to truly difficult questions :) and he bailed out in a jiffy. I am very good at asking difficult questions :)

A while ago there was a young male who ( misjudged my age - I look kinda young) and went after me, and that was educational. He was baiting me strictly on his physical attributes, and the only way to respond would be in kind. Well, what happens when that kind of flair is gone? Poooof! The whole relationship is gone. I'd say, it would last about .... a month or two? and that's it....

Then there are older people who are young inside and bait you silently but then it is too subtle and can be easily just ignored. If they don't talk to you, then .... of course they are not giving themselves away and wont' lose anything, but on the other hand, they won't gain even a friend or a positive experience of getting to know someone whom they liked.

And maybe they are afraid to risk and have the object of admiration make fun of them and reject them. I suppose most people will do that. I _try not to. It is humiliating, so I try to be very kind and extra respectful to those who are brave enough to state they like me. Maybe it doesn't look that way to those who are interested, though.

On the other hand, when they do become a friend, like it happened to me once, then they might have higher inspirations although it is not possible to carry it through. And then they might feel hurt at the end no matter what.

Hm, this is not easy.... The only way to proceed is with extreme respect and kindness. And a lot of forgiveness.

Where I see this at play in my practice is that this comes through bodies I work on. A person who is tight emotionally will have a tight body. The heart is closed so the chest is tight, the blood sugar levels are not working perfect, the adrenals are exausted, .... People who are really scared will have even worse problems, like drugs or drinking, etc..

Fortunately or unfortunately, the only way to truly be healthy is to be OPEN on all levels, to have integrity and courage, and to be genuinely ourselves.

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Monday, February 25, 2008

being me

PS- of course I should know very well what it means to be genuine beyond just what our parents and environment tell us to be.

In my case, my parents would NEVER let me be a masseuse and a healer, or dance African or belly dance, or play drums, or do martial arts, or go out in wilderness tracking, or meditate and have a guru from India... To this day, they think I am a weirdo, and in (at least one) sect. When I said to my mom that I joined the belly dancing class, she just sighed in disbelief. The Buddha in my room got her feeling iffy because "he kept on looking at her", as well as Yogananda, who also "kept staring at her and bugging her" as she said. I said great, I am glad you met them.

I am such an oddball, the only way for me to prosper was to move away from all of my physical family. Which I did. But they should have known all this ahead of time - my father loves to hike and explore nature, my mom loves middle eastern music, my grandpas loved to play and dance, my great grandfathers were all fighters, my mom is an official psychoterapist to everyone, and my grandmas were good with herbs and foods. ,... The only unknown is the spiritual part. At least one of them must have had some seed of really being chummy with God. Hm... My father stands up and prays in whispers every night. And my mom prays to Divine Mother silently. And think of it, my grandma had little Jesus in her room and sent it to me before she died.

"We stand up on the box of our childhood and then kick it from below our feet."

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what does it mean to be genuinely me?

I have an older male client, old school, who cracks me up with his machoisms.
Today we talked about who we really are. I was really shooting for answers beyond physical identifications with our roles in life, our likes and dislikes, etc. He mused about the question, gave some answers related to his roles in life, and then said: "I am definitely male, that's why I like to drink, chase women, race cars, drive motorcycles, etc." His father was like that.

The way he (cockily and confidently) said it made me burst laughing. I thought of my own father and the way he is.

My father smells _all the flowers on his walk home from the beach. He likes to chase the waves, swim, go for long walks exploring the beach, .... He likes to sit quietly and draw. He loves my mother and has been faithful for more than 40 yrs. The way he looks at her even today is amazing. And is definitely and positively male, and indeed so, it is a feeling that one gets, he is a bouncy, active boy.
(Unfortunately he did show violence and anger sometimes, I am not saying he was a saint :)

What I am trying to say is that different people grow up with different idea of what being male or female means. It is sad when we just imitate what we were told as kids we should be like.

What does it really mean to be the genuine, real, ME? Regardless of what my parents/environment approved of or not. Who am I?

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Saturday, February 23, 2008

Belly dance as aerobic and stretching exercise

Because my parents were here and I needed to escape somewhere to do something for ME, I ended up going to the belly dancing class by Tito Seif. Tito is very famous belly dancer from Kairo, Egypt, and stopped here only for 2 days because he came to grab one of the local dancers and take her to Las Vegas to dance with him in the shows. What a chance! We seldom get big names, UNLESS they want to come to vacation in Hawaii. Plus, I never read the newspapers and by chance I saw the article on his class just a few days before the class.

So, wow. That was an amazing class, and I noticed a definite improvement in all my dancing, including the West African dance I regularly go to. Tito was an incredible inspiration because he is so creative and has so much fun while he dances. He just smiles and dances and makes up all kinds of funky moves. It is always different.
*****A GOOD TEACHER MAKES ALL THE DIFFERENCE.****** Somehow something of his schine rubbed on me.

Also, it must be that belly dance is in my blood, my genes are from there and the dance is definitely familiar. What else can I say! I can listen to that music and it all makes sense and sounds cool. It is helping me transition to listening to pure West African music, which is definitely more ... jazzy.

West African music is pure drums and to me it is harder to just listen to it if I am not dancing or drumming. Somehow it requires more participation than just listening. It is ACTIVE music. Also, it sounds more like jazz, the syncopations and the pauses are definitely less predictable. That is what makes traditional African music so cool and so healing. It turns off the logical mind and turns on the higher mind. It requires total relaxation yet alertness. Also, there is absolutely NOTHING sad in African music. It is ALL just happiness and joy. That is definitely a gift to the world. Coming from the chronically melancholic, sad, self pitiful, whiney Eastern Europe, I SUPER highly appreciate the happy, grounded, centered tone of African music. It heals! It connects to the Earth and to one's body and Self.

I concluded that listening to music and being able to SING ALONG is a prerequisite for dancing. That's why Middle Eastern is helping me with African, because African has nothing but drums, and I needed to learn to sing along just drums. It's a learning process, definitely, for a totally white westerner like me. I grew up listening to very linear melodies (that I always found boring). Luckily, we had some middle eastern influence and there was drum music in all kinds of funky beats, like 7/9, and I always adored listening and dancing to that.

So, all this curvey, circular, wiggly, zigzag music is a fabulous exercise. It requires moving the whole body. Check out the articles on dance therapy.

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The beautiful cat

Today two clients admired my cat, and said how beautiful she is. And she IS! She is astonishingly gorgeous. The clear eyes, the schiney fluffy coat, the bouncy step, nice muscles, good size... she looks like a miniature tiger, blazing orange in the sun. That cat is truly a beautiful, vibrantly healthy, sparkley animal.

Why? Because she is fed proper love. Read about it in my articles.

The moral of the story? Love heals all. Love produces health, beauty, and harmony.

Quiet is healing

A/C drone is awful. It is draining being around all that noise.

I tried convincing neighbors to use indoors A/C, if they must. Well, "someone in Sears told them it doesn't work so well". Bologney. I have a friend who has it and it works fine.
Ok, so we they are going to use their noisy monster during day time, it is perhaps more tolerable, if I am not home :) Let's pick our battles.

I finally convinced the people downstairs to NOT use their A/C during the night. To their credit, they stick to that.

Wow... what a relief. It is so much more pleasant to sleep. In fact, it is finally POSSIBLE to sleep. The sound of the Ocean, the crickets, the fresh aroma of the night, the sweet air...

I wake up feeling rested and rejuvenated.

Halelujah baby!

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Friday, February 15, 2008

Parents as a cause for healing

Christy asked me:
>I was amazed to read of your parents' attitude towards your work. Your are able to help >others and provide for yourself in one of the most magically beautiful--and expensive--places >on earth while doing what you love. THAT is the perfect definition of success.

It took me days to digest this. Thanks for asking. In short, my parents don't care if I am happy or not, unless it brings them something. Prestige, money, ...

The interesting thing is that my parents are not bad people, and if you ask them if they love me, they will say yes of course. And they mean it, on one level. It is a nice idea, makes them look good. On the level of actual action, there is much more to be desired. On the level of action, their interests come first. Right now they think they need me, so they are nice to me. When I was growing up and until recently, when they got old and alone at home, they hardly paid any attention to me.

This is extremely hard to digest. To realize that your own parents don't really care for you is rather harsh, cruel, difficult, to see. Another difficult thing is to realize how much I was like them, and how much of my life before was wasted being like them. The later realization came relatively recently. When I was younger, I was very angry at them. Now I cannot be. They are old and it is silly expecting them to change. There is a certain level of forgiveness, knowing that somehow everything worked out all right.

The rough past certainly led me to the healing path. Even as a child, somehow I knew - and I have no idea how, because I had no supporting evidence - that there was a better way. I just knew it, and I wowed to find out. So, here we are!


My parents left last night. I dropped them off at their airport gate. By the time I parked and came back, they already left through the gate and we didn't even say good bye! It seemed like they were interested in leaving quickly. On the other hand, I also wanted too go home soon... It was fun having them, but also challenging. They also thought that for me. So did we just get rid of each other ???

I thought and thought about this today until my brains got all confused, so I just said to God: ok, I want to awaken. That's the only way to really get out of this quigmire called Earth. It is rough here on Earth. The only way is to truly be aware of God. Then everything is clear. There is no other way. So, God, I demand, I ask, I require to Awaken.

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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Parents as a cause for healing

Christy asked me:
>I was amazed to read of your parents' attitude towards your work. Your are able to help >others and provide for yourself in one of the most magically beautiful--and expensive--places >on earth while doing what you love. THAT is the perfect definition of success.

Yes, it is. To you or me. But not to my parents. They live in a small town and being a masseuse is a sex thing there, so my parents are ashamed to talk about my work to other people. My father openly asked me if I could switch professions. My mother pretends to be supportive but she snared.

In short, what I do is not prestigious to them. So, they do not care if I love it, am talented, successful, etc. They care for their own image and "what the Jones' think."

That's kinda painful, when you realize that your parents trully cannot care for you, but only for themselves and their image.

It is even more interesting to see how they begun to approve of it when they saw that I make money and can buy them nice things. Then they become more approving ...

The healing school instructor long time ago told me I was living for their approval, not love. Some other healers told me that I was raised by self centered people and that was a chance to see what that is like and overcome it. Back then, I wasn't strong enough to actually digest this information fully. I remember when the healing teacher said that, I felt stabbed.
It is extremely cruel to realize what I was raised in and how it scarred my whole life, so far. Luckily, I am different now, after some years of intense work on myself. I did live in "their world" for many years and I was like them too. And I was trying to please them all those years; I also was doing things for the Joneses, for my parents. Once we see that about ourself, it is very painful. And again, it is how it is, that's what I learned, and that's how I was. Now is a chance to do something different. Today, I am much stronger and ready to face that. I cannot change my parents. I cannot change the past. I can change me, now. And I forgive my parents, for truly they do not know what they do. It is amazing how asleep they are. ***Without intentional work on oneself, nothing happens. People do not grow.***

So, that's what it is. I remember last week when I saw all this and was petrified to realize that I come from selfishness and was trained in that and WAS like that. I can see, based on what my parents do, why I do certain things. What amazed me is that I could not tell what was genuine me. Everything I did was their immitation. Then I thought to myself: ok, that's how it was before, I didn't know any better. Now I do. And the question came: WHO AM I? Who am I really, without all this learned stuff? This question led to some powerful, transformational, life changing, self discovery experiences.

The meditation leader said that asking such questions, BEING IN QUESTION, is the way to go.
The question "leads the way" and shows us the Truth.

He said we are meant to be an improvement on our parents. Also, we are meant to repair the legacy of our parents, to repair it inside ourselves, and in that, we rewrite and heal the past.

I knew this intellectually before. Now I am experiencing it.

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Monday, February 4, 2008

retail therapy

My parents are visiting. They go bananas when indoors, but are not enterpreneuring to go outside (in a nice warm Hawai'i...) and are always lookiing for something to entertain them. In short, they do not know how to entertain themselves.

So, I dropped them off at (rather fancy, well visited, famous, touristy) shopping mall called Ala Moana and came back 6 hrs later.

I was sure they would be tired. Not at all! Both of them were completely refreshed and perky. They enjoyed window shopping and people watching. Luckily the mall is mostly outdoors so they practically spent the day outdoors by the ocean.

Now they are home again and cranky and don't know what to do with themselves.

Interesting - what this modern age makes of human beings: people who don't know what to do with themselves and have to be entertained. There is no gratitide, no enjoyment of life, only grumbling that there is nothing external to keep us passively entertained.

Maybe that's how it always has been - that's why there are alcohol and drug problems all over the world. I once watched a documentary of some hut in middle of some African desert where grandma and her son and wife and kids live, and grandma brews some beer and is drunk all day. This was maybe 5x5 grass hut in the middle of nowhere. Obviously, that woman in that hut does not know what to do with her time either.

So, what does it mean to have parents and society like this? People that taught us those habits and now we are like them but feel that something is not quite right.

I was first feeling scandalized and then accepted that this is my heritage on one level. On another level, I am a child of God and that heritage is mine too, and needs to be nurtured.

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being famous; belly dance as therapy

This weekend I attended a belly dance workshop with a very famous and very good Egyptian dancer, Tito Seif. He flew in from Kairo, taught for 2 days, and performed.

Wow! First, he is a very good dancer, technically and "artistically." His dance flows and has flair. Second, Tito is very professional, keeps on the high-energy smile, and that plus the high quality dance keeps the audience totally mesmerized. No matter what is happening - cranky assistant, music stops, class that doesn't get it - Tito keeps on dancing and smiling. Third, he is a fabulous performer. The video clips on youtube cannot convey this quality. As he performs, he engages the audience, and it is apparent he is having fun. His mastery of music and dance and this playful creativity with the audience (asking people to clap, etc. in a very cheerful and charming way) makes for a very memorable performance.

This guy is famous. So, it made me think: is he famous because he is one of the few humans who can actually ENJOY HIMSELF, actually dedicated to something he loves, actually sacrificing to do that - teaching students which aren't perfect, etc. But nonetheless, doing what he loves - dancing - and enjoying it. LOVING IT.

The other thing that struck me is how therapeutic belly dance is. It adjusts the pelvis, stretches the spine, and exercises the entire body in a balanced and healthy manner.
I tell all my clients to try belly dance, hula, african dance, maybe salsa, and of course yoga and maybe tai-chi. All those exercises work the body all over in a balanced way.

Stretching the pelvis is the main thing.

Personal preferences determine what we pick. Belly dance is dramatic. For people who love flair and drama, who like to act, who are sensual, who love to play seductive, who love to show off, to deck themselves out in glitz and glitter and beauty, this is it. A safe outlet for all those tendencies. Also for people who have issues with their bodies. Belly dance is not terribly demanding physical workout, you don't need major muscles, but some muscles and a lot of flexibility.
Hula is for quieter types who enjoy more spiritual exercise with more gentleness, less emphasis on showing off, and more team work. Hula is not terribly physically demanding, but is a great workout that works.
African dance is for very athletic, muscular, sturdy types who need a heavy, relatively acrobatic (jumping, swirling, running) workout in a community setting.
Yoga is for really instrospective types. Tai chi wu or yang style as well.

Enjoy!!!!

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