Learning “good alignment” can be a helpful, liberating teaching. It can also become a cage, reinforcing neuroses and fragility.
These two seemingly opposite truths — that alignment-based work can be both liberating and enslaving — share a common root.
That root is hard to put into words, though even incremental deepening in one’s understanding of that can be quite liberating.
This “alignment conversation” happening within a person is something I’ve been investigating deeply for many years — in my own body and the bodies in my care. It’s an ongoing question for me.
This is the first video of a series, each progressively more refine, nuanced and subtle. So we’ll start here, at the most gross and overt: the meta bony relationships (which is, indeed, what most people think of when they say the word “alignment”).
The gist: When we say “alignment,” we are really referring to a body in relation to itself. This can be a change in thinking because we often use objects outside the body as reference points — i.e. stand up straight, bring your hand up to the ceiling, open your chest forward.**
Emotional flavor: humility (to back off and find what’s being glossed over), and clear seeing / feeling.
** Note: this isn’t about changing your cues per se; it’s about clear seeing. “How to teach” is another topic altogether.