When people ask me about the Body Electric School, the question I often get is, “Why should I take this workshop?”
It’s not an easy question to answer. Different men have different outcomes. But I can always share what the work of the school has done for me.
Here is a video documentary that provides insight into the workshop:
Here are just five reasons why taking a Body Electric workshop may be helpful to you.
1. To begin to heal from your stresses, your pains, and your fears.
As men, we are often brought up to believe that we should be tough, strong, and emotionless. That we should always pursue, and that we must always challenge.
Those are not inherently bad lessons. However, when we take on those beliefs, we neglect the other side of ourselves. To be vulnerable. To express what we are feeling. To give in to what is.
Our bodies can store these struggles –– they remember. And these struggles manifest themselves in undesirable ways. We witness those pains when we develop health problems, when our relationships start to fail, when we embrace addictions, and when we find ourselves feeling hopeless, lost, and alone.
Through breath work, movement, healing touch, and interactive exercises, you can begin to recognize what you have held inside for so long. You can experience it fully. And, perhaps, just perhaps, you can begin to let it go.
Those of us who truly learn to integrate all aspects of ourselves, to balance the masculine and feminine energies that exist in all of us, regardless of gender, are often better prepared to live more meaningful and joyful lives. We can learn how to connect more fully with others, and most importantly, we can learn to finally, truthfully, love ourselves just as we are –– just as we were meant to be.
2. To find new ways to expand, and embody, your spiritual practice.
It is not uncommon for us to question our beliefs, to wonder about our purpose in life, to connect to a higher power.
I was raised Roman Catholic, attended mass every Sunday without fail, served in many roles, followed the Sacraments, and did everything that was expected of me.
For the most part, it was a good experience, but I lacked a true sense of self. As I became a young adult, I began to encounter some of life’s more significant challenges. I found my spiritual tradition to be too unrealistic, too unyielding, and too unforgiving. And I found myself drifting.
Through working with the school, I learned to recognize that only I am responsible for my relationship with my Higher Being. I’ve explored other traditions, and I’ve learned of many of the beautiful gifts others have received. And, in that practice, I’ve learned to recognize, and finally celebrate, my own.
I now enjoy a fully embodied, ecstatic, soulful connection to my Creator, in a practice that celebrates and appreciates all others, but that is truly my own. And I have reached a level of self-awareness with my spirituality that guides me –– each and every day.
3. To pursue more joyful life experiences.
How often do we find ourselves wallowing in regret, wondering about what “might be,” and choosing to forgo life experiences that help us to grow as human beings?
For me, choosing to take the first Body Electric workshop was an incredible challenge.
The thought of becoming completely naked, to be vulnerable, physically, and emotionally, frightened me to the core.
I was not comfortable with my body (indeed, I HATED it), I was socially awkward, and I feared that I would be challenged by my life decisions, my perspectives, and my beliefs.
What I found, instead, was beauty, connection, and acceptance.
Since my first workshop, I have learned not to limit my life experiences. I pursue each new adventure from a place of full awareness, and each experience offers an opportunity to learn more about myself, and about the beauty of the world around me.
Often, we deny ourselves joy because we are fearful. I denied myself joy because I felt I was undeserving. But no longer. For it is in those experiences that I open doors to greater awareness of others, and most importantly, of myself.
4. To finally find brotherhood in community.
I grew up surrounded by the love of family, but I could not benefit from it because I was addicted to pain. I had no identity, no real sense of self.
It is those factors that ultimately can lead us to directionless, joyless, unfulfilling lives.
I most certainly was on that path, and as a result, had very few fulfilling relationships and meaningful connection with others. And for those that I did have connection, I found myself spilling over my pain into their lives.
Since I became involved in the work of the school, I feel like I have finally “come home.” Many of the men I met in my first workshop are now some of my dearest friends. We share a connection that surpasses physical distance, that endures through time. I finally have learned to connect, to listen, to be supportive, and, most importantly, to allow myself to be supported.
And that, my friend, is true community.
5. To build a loving relationship with yourself.
Have you ever experienced true ecstatic living? Waking up in the morning, loving and appreciating everything around you, anticipating the experience that lies ahead, and wanting to make the most of every waking moment?
I can say that now I have, and I can’t get enough of that feeling.
Through my work in the school, I developed a greater understanding of myself, of my life, and of my role in the lives of others. I now recognize just how precious, just how beautiful, life is, and just how little time we have to experience it in our bodies. So I make an effort, through my daily practice, to reconnect to the ideals I have learned through the school each and every day. It takes work. It takes discipline.
But the rewards are bountiful.
Are you seeking a space to embrace your full embodied experience? The New Body Electric School offers weekend introductory workshops for men, for women, and for all genders together. Workshops are offered in multiple cities throughout the year, and scholarships are available for those in need. To learn more, click on the button below.
Photo courtesy of Eddie Hernandez.