Consciousness & the spine

Consciousness & the spine 

State of being and your body

spine purpleOur state of being (aka consciousness) is always informing this physical form that we call our body.  On a basic level this means that our tone/vibration/or that which we are, is showing up in manifestation through this body.  Said another way the body is a physical mirror or manifestation of our non-physical self or our consciousness.  Due to this we can learn about ourselves and our state of being by paying attention to what our body is expressing.  

We are often not conscious of ourselves so our body gives us the opportunity to see ourselves through its physical form.  In fact most people identify themselves as the physical form itself and not the consciousness that gives the form its shape and expression to begin with.  This is largely why people feel disempowered.  Identification as the form rather than the consciousness that creates the form leaves us feeling rather helpless as we are trying to manipulate the form(s) from the belief that we are the form.  When you recognize that you are not the form but instead that which makes the form come alive now infinite possibilities open up to you.  

You can liken this to clip in the movie the Matrix where the child talks to Neo about the spoon.  He says you can’t bend the spoon, that would be impossible, you can only realize there is no spoon.  In this way you are recognizing state of being rather than form and therefore any shape or configuration becomes possible because you are aware as the consciousness rather than the form.  This is also why what you think and believe to be so is so.  Your consciousness believes something to be and thus that is what it becomes and what you perceive to be.  This emphasizes why it is important to discover what you are believing to be true (rather than simply accepting the agreed upon societal delusions that you’ve been taught), as they are shaping your reality and body.   

So lets connect this to your spine.  Clearly your spine is part of this physical form that we call a body and so its subjected to the same rules I’ve stated above, namely that your state of being directly informs the tension, holding or freedom of motion patterns within your spinal cord.  Your spinal cord is that bundle of fibers that relays information between your brain and body.  It allows consciousness (you) to express through this physical form via movement and function. If your spinal cord is severed (like in the case of a significant injury) or more commonly is stretched/distorted, then the functions and ways that you can physically express yourself become limited.  Let’s take look at how the spinal cord stretches/distorts in response to your state of being.  

Consciousness & the spine

Fragmentation and the resulting spinal cord distortion patterns 

15734407 - human radiography scan made in 3dIn the Network system there are 5 primary patterns or ways that the spinal cord stretches/distorts that have been identified.  When your spinal cord is stretched in one or a combination of these patterns, then you will filter your life experiences and what you perceive to be and how you express yourself through the lens of the distortion pattern (particularly if you believe yourself to be the body).  It is how you will perceive life.  Each of these 5 patterns is connected with a state of being.  Lets run through the nuts and bolts of those patterns.  

The first pattern is connected to tension in the spinal cord at the level of the first bone in your neck, which is called C1.  When this area is pulled taut it is often in connection to the perception or state of being that there is not enough time.  Some of the manifestations of this are you feeling like you never have enough time in a day, you can’t get it all done, running up against deadlines, perhaps procrastinating, find it hard to be on time or are very rigid about your time schedule, always feel over booked, can’t trust the natural timing and rhythm of life events, etc.  The basis of this pattern is lack or scarcity of time.  

The second pattern is connected to tension in the spinal cord spanning from the fifth bone in your neck down to the 2nd bone in your thoracic spine, or C5-T2.  It is connected with the perception that you cannot trust others, self or life.  There may be a sense of betrayal, people not being there for you or not reliable, feeling unsupported by others, a tendency towards anger and aggression towards others as you react to not being able to trust them, feeling like you can’t trust yourself particularly in relationship.  This is where the fight response of the the fight/flight mechanisms occurs (the above C1 pattern being the flight response).  The basis of this pattern is lack of trust.  

The third pattern is connected to your sacrum bone in your pelvis.  Here lives your sense of identity and who you are in the world.  When there is tension at this level of the spinal cord it is connected to having to be ‘somebody’ often other than yourself, feeling pressure by what society or others think you should be, aligning your center to something other than you, feeling confused about or like you don’t know who you are, often “losing” yourself in others.  The basis of this pattern is confusion or conforming your identity to what you’ve been taught or what others think you should be.  There is a lack of knowing self.  

The fourth pattern is connected to tension in the spinal cord at C2-C3 in your upper neck area.  When this area is pulled tight it is connection to the perception that life is about doing, accomplishment and thinking.  Some of the manifestations of this are you noticing that it is hard to feel, you tend to think or talk about your emotions rather than feel them, need to be in control, there is a tendency to overdo or over-think, may feel lost in thoughts or ruminating, tendency towards numbness or using your head over your heart, rationalization is chosen over intuitive knowing, life is not about fun but about accomplishing, tends towards over-achievement, etc.  The basis of this pattern is lack of passion.  

The fifth pattern has two separate manifestations to it.  The first manifestation is tension at the C5 bone simultaneous with tension in the coccyx/tailbone.  This pattern pulls through the spine in a flexion/extension direction and is one of the highest tension patterns that manifests in the spine.  When there is tension in this patterning the state of being is one of not feeling safe and/or not having enough in terms of resources.  This may manifest as feeling like you never have enough money or physical resources, not feeling safe to interact with others or the world, feeling like things have been taken away from you, or feeling violated or invaded by your environment or others.  The basis for this pattern is lack of abundance of resources.  

The second manifestation of the fifth pattern arises with tension at C2 in the neck simultaneous with tension in the sacrum.  This pattern also pulls all the way along the spine in a diagonal direction.  The manifestations of this pattern are connected with lack of abundance in relation with yourself and who you are in the world.  Often feelings of unworthiness arise, feeling like you are not enough, like you don’t matter, like there is no room for you in the world or that your presence isn’t worth taking up space, your life feels like not your own and that you don’t have anything to offer the world.  The basis for this pattern is lack of abundance of self.  

human bones radiography scan imageIt is important to remember that none of these patterns are you.  They are simply ways that your spinal cord has distorted due to the way your consciousness has interpreted events in your life.  We all have aspects of each pattern with the tendency towards stronger propensities to some.  These patterns are not stationary or permanent.  They change, even within a given day, or within a single entrainment session.  The amount of tension or distortion within these patterns also changes as you progress through care.  In fact that is part of what the levels of Network Care are all about.  As you move through the levels of care the tension within these patterns unbinds and the energy that was configured in particular distortion patterns within your physical form is released.  You become less bound or seemingly solid and more of the light of consciousness that you are can permeate and emit out through this vessel we call a human body.  

If we go back to our earlier example of the Matrix and the realization that there is no spoon but only consciousness, we can see how you becoming less solid and permeable to the light of awareness fits.  As you unbind your tension patterns you become less identified with the form and realize/experience more of self as consciousness rather than the body.  With this your consciousness views itself, and your perception, behavior/self-expression and the structure/function of this form change as well.  They literally can’t not.  So than rather than trying to change form from the belief that you are the form, your form simply responds to your awareness recognizing itself as the consciousness it is.  This is recognition of wholeness and the freedom of expression and motion is the result.  

Dr. Amanda Hessel, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

Why is your nervous system important?

Why is your nervous system  important?

Nervous system 101 

33891023 - the human nervous system on a black backgroundMost people are vaguely familiar with the term nervous system.  Your nervous system consists of your brain, spinal cord and all of the nerves that come out from your spinal cord.  Those nerves extend out and connect to all of your organs, bones, muscles, and cells in your body.  Every single thing in your body is in communication with everything else thanks to your nervous system.

Your brain and spinal cord rest inside the bones of your skull and spine.  In their healthy state they rest in a relaxed position, with just the right amount of tone or tension.  Tone-tension is a very important concept.  Many people think that less  tone-tension is better but this is not the case.  If you don’t have enough tone-tension than you don’t have enough strength and stability, you are clumsier, floppier, slower and flatter.  If you have too much tone-tension you are tight, wound up, stiff and something could snap/break at any moment.  All tissues (spinal cord, muscles, organs, etc.) must have the “right” amount of tone in order to perform their functions appropriately.

Lets relate this to your spinal cord.  In its most optimal state of tone-tension it is able to relay messages back and forth between your brain and your body so that you can both receive necessary information from your environment and also take appropriate actions.  In essence so that you can be most responsive and adaptive.  Health is a state of responsiveness and adaptability.  In the case of either too much or not enough tone in your spinal cord, your nervous system cannot relay these messages appropriately, and thus your health begins to deteriorate.  As with all things when communication is impaired the system breaks down, so too with your body.

Getting the right tone in your  spinal cord

Stress, passion & life

So what creates too much tone or not enough tone in the spinal cord?

45856619 - portrait of stressed blond woman on white backgroundToo much tone is created when you can’t handle the circumstances of your life or you try to control-manage all of the details.  This is what people call stress and it creates hyper-vigilance.  These people often feel overly sensitive to life as they are in overwhelm.  They may feel everyone’s emotions, or only be able to eat certain foods, or need to be particular about their environments.  Sometimes they appear ultra functional.  Trust is  usually challenging for these folks and they may also use substances to calm down or “check out” so that they don’t have to feel as much.

bored ladyToo little tone is created when you lack passion and desire, or feel unworthy to be your unique expression of life.  These people often feel bored, like they aren’t enough and need to seek out more stimulus so that they can feel something, which makes them feel more alive.  Its hard for these people to take action, or have breakthroughs, they may feel awkward in movement, and their posture may be more collapsed and appear less confident.

I have found that most people have a combination of low and high tone in their systems.  Network Spinal Analysis specifically addresses spinal cord tension patterns in order to help create the most optimal tone in your spinal cord and nervous system.  It does this through gentle contacts that help your brain tune into your body and more efficiently regulate the flow of information throughout your system.  The benefits of optimal tone are an increase in presence, availability, communication, and health of your body-mind-spirit being.

Dr. Amanda Hessel, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado