Lesson 5

 

BECOMING A GROUNDED PERSON

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You may remember the newspaper comic strip B.C., by Johnny Hart. One of my favorite B.C. cartoons starts with one of the characters looking up at another character who is busy laying bricks while suspended in the air.  “What are you doing?” asks the one standing on the ground. “Building a wall,” says the other. “Why do you ask?” “Just curious. All the pros start at the bottom.”

 

Even though there is a strong emphasis on the upper energy centers in many approaches to energy work, sooner or later, you have to go the other direction. In this lesson, we will use our basic internal energy tools—feeling connection; relaxed but connected attention; neutral intention—to explore the energetics of grounding. This will mean going into areas that are often “off the radar” for a lot of us: namely, below the beltline.

 

Not Just Connection with the Earth

Grounding is about much more than a set of tactics for “earthing” yourself, though that is a vital and necessary starting point. Practices that enliven your connection with your lower body and the Earth will definitely help you feel more rooted and stable, but they are the beginning, rather than the end, of the story of grounding.

 

Behind the scenes of all the conscious work you do to ground yourself, there are other, bigger stories unfolding. One of them is your relationship to everyday life and your ability to be present in what you do. Another, the biggest of them all, has to do with the long work of settling deeply into your true identity. Ultimately, becoming a grounded person means having found yourself in the Ground of all Being, the on-going work and realization of a lifetime. Stepping in this direction involves one of the great paradoxes of spiritual life: when it comes to opening your consciousness to higher dimensions, it is often the case that down is up.

 

“Downward Mobility”

Your spiritual life will benefit greatly from work with your lower centers. This is not to say that it’s always a breeze to connect in a relaxed, feeling way with your lower body and energy centers. If you have been living most of your life in your head and upper body—and that means most of us—truly coming consciously into your lower body, even for a minute, can feel like going skinny-dipping in the unknown.

 

For any number of reasons, many of them having to do with the way we are trained during childhood in matters of sexuality, hygiene, self-image and modesty, a lot of us have a hard time bringing our awareness below our beltlines in more than an external, superficial way. When it comes to energetic movement, emotional expression and sensitivity, many of us are significantly absent from our lower bodies. When this absence is combined with ideas of spirituality that tend to glorify only transcendence and the functions of the upper centers of consciousness, it can create a disconnection from much that is vital and juicy about being alive. This disconnection comes at the expense of a conscious inner life that extends to our lower energy centers, and it can unnecessarily hinder our sense of joy, grounding, sexuality, creativity and relatedness to life.

Ten Reasons to Work with Your Lower Energy Centers (Especially if you do healing work with other people)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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And especially true for the energy healers among you . . .

 

 

Exercise 1: Head and Belly

Here is an interesting and useful pathway down into your lower body. Not only does it help you arrive at your destination in a balanced way, it also teaches you new ways of moving your awareness in your body.

 

Energy-Active Positions used in this Exercise:

  • The tip of your nose;

  • The bridge of your nose;

  • The middle of your head;

  • The middle of your belly

 

 

Exercise 2: Moving Your Awareness Below Your Beltline

When it comes to grounding, there is no single position or energy center that does it all. I think in terms of what I call a “Grounding Complex,” which is made up of many players, each with a unique role to play:

 

Energy-Active Positions used in this Exercise:

  • the downward-pointing triangle of bone at the base of your spine;

  • your “tailbone,” located below your sacrum;

  • the area between your genitals and anus;

  • Pelvis and pubic bones;

  • Your legs and feet;

  • In short, and all the energy centers located there.

 

With this in mind, let’s begin our practice with a deceptively simple practice. This simple exercise is good for increasing the aliveness in your lower body. When you have worked with this exercise for a while and get so that your lower body and energy centers really perk up, you will feel the return of your vitality and creativity, as well as the quickening of your spirituality and intuition.

 

Please note: As is the case with all energy exercises, this exercise can bring subconscious material into your awareness. If you have a history of injury in your lower body, including trauma like sexual abuse, please take it easy with this exercise. That means 1.) not trying to force your awareness to go where it doesn’t want to go; 2.) limiting the time you do this exercise to 5 minutes until you feel confident. Refer to the “Guidelines for Energy Exercises” in Lesson 1. Should symptoms of trauma persist, I advise you to seek the support of a trained trauma professional.

 

When you’re ready, I’ll walk you through this exercise:

 

      

 

 

 

 

Homework: “Myself as a Grounded Person”: A Reflection on Your Root Situation

Becoming a grounded person, as opposed to doing things to ground yourself occasionally, is a part of your life development. In terms of energy and consciousness, if your grounding function and foundation are hindered, for whatever reason, the rest of your world has to compensate.

 

The most basic aspects of your life are a commentary on what might be called your root situation. Here are some things to reflect on, perhaps in writing:

  • Whether or not you consciously inhabit your body;

  • Whether you have beliefs that keep you away from awareness of your lower body;

  • Your sense of “home,” your means of support, your sense of meaning and stability in your life;

  • The degree to which you can express who you are in your everyday life,

  • Your sense of the geographical place in which you live;

  • Your sense of place and direction in this world.

 

In our next lesson, we will take up the subject of centering. As with grounding, this is not just a matter of using a tactic or two to come into your center. As we grow and develop, our relationship grows with the center of our being, which may be another way of saying we live more and more in our hearts. Stay tuned!

(Photo by Dave Bredeson. Used with permission.)

  • The energy centers in your lower body create your grounding and your connection with the Earth and with everyday life. Spirituality without the “base note” of your lower centers of consciousness quickly becomes otherworldly and disconnected from everyday life.

  • If you want your sense of spiritual connection to perk up, work with your lower energy centers. Your lower centers of consciousness are able to ground what you draw into your consciousness via your upper centers. This means they allow you to contain and embody what comes to you from higher dimensions of consciousness.

  • Your lower centers act as a pole to which your intuition flows. Again, if you want your intuition to increase its activity, work with your lower centers of consciousness. Otherwise, insights might come, but often, without adequate grounding and containment, what comes to you tends to be a flash in the pan.

  • Your ability to express yourself depends, in part, on the health of your lower centers, especially your Sacral Center, as it is energetically related to your Throat Center. (We will go more into this in Lesson 7.)

  • Your lower energy centers are sources of great power when they are healthy. Conversely, they are sources of internal obstacles when they are repressed and unable to release their emotional charge.

  • If you sometimes find yourself “spacing out,” or having trouble staying in your body and in the present moment, it is definitely time to learn how to work with the energy centers in your lower body.

  • Your creativity is linked to your lower energy centers. Accordingly, much of what blocks your creativity will be associated with these centers, too.

  • As you work with other people, your ability to ground energy will be called on again and again. The energetic unit formed by you and your treatment partner creates an amplified need for grounding, especially when you are working with someone who is going through emotional or other kinds of releases of excess energy from their bodies.

  • Grounding again: Working with your lower centers helps you keep your feet on the ground and not get bowled over when the energy around you is intense.

  • And, again, keeping your feet on the ground: Working with your lower centers helps you to stay out of some of the traps of ego-inflation that can show up when developing healing qualities.

Click here for the "Head and Belly" Exercise:

Head to Belly ExerciseJim Gilkeson
00:00 / 17:26

Click here for the Lower Body Meditation:

Lower Body MeditationJim Gilkeson
00:00 / 12:59

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