Sunday, December 31, 2006


color and Christmas

Today is the end of the year.

Tomorrow is the beginning of a new year.

This is bogus and this is wonderful, a chance to remember how amazing a day can be, how amazing it is to be alive, how wonderful is the miracle of always, always, always being able to come to the present.

In the present we can begin anew.

A new year, a new day, a new moment: when we are now, we are alive. Sometimes we are stuck in our habits of what to do next, so: do nothing. Or stay present and move slowly, think slowly, feel slowly, allow the newness of now to inspire you to discovering a new way to move, a new way to feel, a new way to think.

Each moment is a gift.

Each moment is a present.

What a nice day, today, to move slowly and ponder and wonder and feel and smile in and about all the possibilities of a full and wonder-ful and aware and love filled and happy life.




(Note. The essays are rotating through the three blogs, more or less one per day.
So you might want to check:
WakeUp Feldenkrais®
Life on Earth ::: Slow Sonoma
for the last two essays.)

Monday, December 25, 2006


Me: Hey, Jesus, what do you think of this Christmas thing?

Jesus: This is a trick question, right? I'm supposed to say it's too commercial and ridiculous and way off from the simple, "give all your worldly goods to the poor and follow me," kind of thing I'm purported to have said.

Me: Well, what did you say?

Jesus: Love your brethren. Love your neighbors. Love your enemies. Love God.

Me: Some people get into a loving spirit at Christmas time.

Jesus: Well, I was kind of hoping for an all life commitment. As in loving your neighbors on Christmas day and on the Fourth of July, whatever that is about, and in traffic jams, whatever they are all about. What is this world all about, anyway?

Me: Making money and looking good in someone else's eyes. I think that's kind of what turns the wheels. And being comfortable, if you are in one of the rich nations.

Jesus: We didn't have so many nations back then. We had the Romans, kind of the Big Guys and everyone else, in that part of the world, didn't count for much. Seems like your country is kind of like the Romans, eh?

Me: So. Our country should give everything away to the poor?

Jesus: You know. Back in those days, I knew everything, but it was just some villages and Pharisees who didn't understand the true meaning of love and living a God-ly life. Now, you guys have created such an amazing mess.

Me: But are you all powerful and whatnot.

Jesus: Doesn't look like it, does it?

Me: But God is supposed to be omnipotent.

Jesus: Well, there's the whole: let them have free will and make as big a mess as possible and maybe they'll turn to God and find a way out. But, you know, the Osama Bin Laden people kind of think the same thing: destroy the modern world because it has strayed from God. Which it has. But the solution isn't God and destruction, it's love.

Me: Don't you go for that I am the Way thing anymore?

Jesus: I'm the Way of love and healing and accepting all classes and women and poor and lepers and prostitutes, and worst of all, tax collectors, and that's the way. It's not about getting on the Jesus team.

Me: You mean Buddhists might get into heaven?

Jesus: They go for rebirth, don’t' they? So they really don't need heaven.

Me: Where do all the extra people come from if there's rebirth.

Jesus: I'm not a Buddhist. Ask them.

Me: So do good people go to heaven?

Jesus: The whole eternal life promise. That's the big lure, isn't it?

Me: It's not what you offer?

Jesus: Well: it's not working very well to get people to love the guy next door and to stop blowing up the people in some other country. This after you die, heaven is going to be your reward thing, gets people out of the now.

Me: The now's my thing.

Jesus: The Kingdom of Heaven is within. When you get there, you are so Now, there's nothing left.

Me: So, do you have a message for people on this Christmas Day of 2006?

Jesus: Don't drink and drive. Listen more than you talk. Be quiet for awhile every night and morning. Think about the vastness of the world and the miracle of life. See if you can make a difference. And… love yourself and your neighbor and your doggone enemy. And God.

Me: What is God?

Jesus: God is the waking up to now and to love and the way you are when you are so easy with yourself and kind to other people you don't have a care in the world, and you feel great to be alive.

(Note. The essays are rotating through the three blogs, more or less one per day.
So you might want to check:
WakeUp Feldenkrais®
Life on Earth ::: Slow Sonoma
for the last two essays.)

Friday, December 22, 2006


Self-attack, self-love, curiosity.

These mean that I have options. Options mean I am free, I'm a real human being, I'm not stuck, I can learn and change and enjoy my life even if I'm not perfect or things around me aren't perfect.

Now to the eating thing.

One of the weird and wonderful parts about eating a raw/ living foods way, is that you can eat tons and tons of food and never gain weight, and never be sick. One of the downsides, though, is that you can eat and eat and get a very full stomach that aches and pains you in the middle of the night.

That's what I had last night, my yummy-too-much-to-eat-at-night, too full and aching stomach complaining bitterly of my abuse of it.

I could have gone into the "I should not have eaten so much story," which seems true enough on the surface, but after you've done the Byron Katie work for awhile you realize that these "shoulds" always carry an undercurrent of implication: you are wrong. There is something wrong with you. The should is a shaming word, as are all the should nots.

So, what am I to do?

Love what I am in the ache. Sense myself deeply and love and appreciate who and what I am right then. Just to do that is to begin to relax and the pain then has a better chance of healing away, since my poor overstuffed body now isn't constricted and can use its energy digesting.

Love that I have a chance to be curious about what to do with this "eating too much at night" habit. What variations can I try on it? Eating with more attention at night would help, since lunch is the meal Marlie and I sit down together and pay happy attention to food, and night is kind of a get this and that a enjoy while reading a book or watching a video.

Hmm. That would be a nice shift. And I can chant before I eat.

Or eat standing.

Or ( and this is great, if, if, if I remember) sense myself, taste each bite and follow my breathing as I eat.

Or do yoga after I eat so I will want to be light in order to do the yoga.

Or do the Byron Katie work before I eat, in case I'm filling up some sort of emotional holes.

Lots to be curious about and explore.

Which is a way of loving myself.

So these are the choices:
1) To go into a war: Thou Shalt Not Eat This Way any More. This is dreary and it doesn't work.

2) To invoke curiosity and self-love, slowing down, shifting habits and upping awareness. This seems like a good strategy to me.

Happy solstice, Christmas, Hanukkah and all the rest.

( Note: I'm back on a one a day essay/ thought/ contemplation/ posting per day,
am rotating them through (roughly in this order),
then wakeup-feldenkrais,
then taichiyoghealthweightloss,
if that interests you.)

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


What a concept, eh?

Is it really possible? The boys come in with mud on their feet and wreck the floor you spent hours cleaning, and you still have to love them?

Your wife talks all night on the phone, making jokes about how fat and stupid you have become, and you still have to love her?

The guy runs off with the twenty year younger secretary. Love anyone?

The borrower blithely purchases luxuries you would never grant yourself, and then just as blithely, "forgets" to repay, and then acts shocked when you ask for your money back. What a good excuse to not exactly love this one, eh?

Well, that's that lot of it. We're a bunch of selfish and thoughtless and oftentimes mean scoundrels.

Hard to love.

Hard as hell to love.

And how hard is hell to love? I don't know, but there are a lot of places on earth right now that could give that phrase a go for its money, and just to realize how great it is not to be living in Sudan or Iraq or some slum in Brazil/Africa/ Chicago/ Mexico City/ anywhere, is to begin to see that maybe things aren't so bad when the hubbie runs off with the hottie.

But to love him, the scoundrel? Love her, the bitch? Love them, the selfish and thoughtless one? Love It, the Mean Thing?

Well, well, well. A deep subject, as a former friend of mine used to say, a friend who won't speak to me and whom I love. From a distance of necessity. And joy. Loving her while she's still got a bug up her ass is a lot of fun.

That's a weird concept , but try it out.

All these people that fill the shadow edges of our phone books, who we don't really want to talk to, who we can't feel good inside when we think about them, what if they were a source of joy rather than the kind of undercurrent grind of dissatisfaction that they are?

This is the hoot of unconditional love: you don't have to wait around for the impossible, for the liar to be honest, for the scoundrel to be straight, for the rat to be unselfish. You can just love and enjoy your loving while they are still waltzing around in their lives of small minded slop. Or worse. Large minded larceny. Whatever. They are the mean and the selfish and the unfaithful, and that's their job in life.


This isn't about suffering. Suffering is not unconditional love. Love is really digging and appreciating them as they are, in a way that feels good inside us. We feel good.

Now, another thing here, and this is the rathole down which many people send their minds to avoid this brave new world of unconditional love. This other thing is that unconditional love does not mean condoning something you wish to stop. If someone is abusing a child, you can love this person, and separate them from the child. Call the police. Talk to them firmly. Wrap your arms around the child.

And love this person.


Well. So be it. Hate the person, and how do you feel inside and what good does that do anyone? Perhaps it shows the child it's okay to hate, which gets tricky, since it's fine to be angry, if you are a child and you are being pushed around unfairly. Or if you are an adult being pushed around unfairly.

It's just not fair to your own life to allow that circumstance, as an adult, get you pushed out of your happiness. Change the circumstance. Leave. Say no. Call the police. Put up your voice and strength to stop something that needs to be stopped.

And still: keep loving.


Well, that's a Byron Katie essay, which this isn't, and here's the good news: you don't keep loving by Trying to love, or by Being Good, or Being Full of Love. You keep loving by doing the Work and discovering : this is who and how I am when I hold to my thoughts of condemnation, and this is who I am when I see and love What Is, for being What Is?

Is that still complicated?

Yes. It is.

This is one of the most complicated and wonderful things in life, this chance, which comes from the work of Byron Katie, or the work of being purely present, or the work of not grasping and not avoiding (sometimes called Buddhism) or the work of loving your enemies (sometimes called Christianity), this chance to not fall into misery, sorrow, resentment, angry, victimhood or hatred, just because someone else has decided to play out the not so wonderful side of human nature.

For now though, this: this is about making choices, not about being good. It's about feeling good for the love of ourselves and the love of life and the love of feeling love, and not letting other people set up the conditions for when and how we can shine and glow and be free from within.

This is about freedom and the glory of being alive and having awareness and making choices.


And it's about now.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Full Spectrum Lighting

For health and happiness and keeping up the winter spirits and reconnecting
what we really need as human beings,
it may be very important to feed our eyes and minds
real light.


Pathway in garden I designed in Sonoma. See bottom of sidebar for longer story.
Photo: R. Dale

If you are feeling a little blue this time of year, part of it could be the sugar overload
of "the season,"
and the last essay in here will help break that habit.

Part of it is all the expectations to do all sorts of things that other people
think you should be doing,
and that requires some
sweet and delightful work of the Byron Katie sort.
Either see, or
do a search of my other sites for Byron Katie for numerous essays.

And, it may be a light deprivation, too much time indoors and that indoor time your mind and self being fed by artificial light that is a big offshoot from the real light with which the human species evolved for millions of years.

Worst of all, living your days under fluorescent lights, and you know, at least at some level what that is doing to your mood. Guess what? It's also undermining your health.

I'll give you some web addresses, including one that right away starts to give you lots of information.

And that's it for now. Just think about it. Remember when you were a child and how free and happy you felt when you got to get outside into the real light. That child may well be starving now.

Go outside more.

Get yourself full spectrum lights.


Here are a few sites. You can google all the more that you wish.

natural lighting

full spectrum solutions

Mercola reports
. Starts off telling about this and that, as per below, and then has lots more::::

• Improved mood
• Enhanced mental awareness, concentration and productivity ...
• Superior visual clarity and color perception ...
• Better sleep ...
• Super-charged immune system ...
• More energy ...
• Reduced eye strain and fatigue with a glare-free and comfortable reading environment ...
• Greater learning ability and intelligence ...

Sunlight Starvation Starts in Your Brain

To begin with, when light enters your eyes, it not only goes to your visual centers enabling you to see; it also goes to your brain's hypothalamus.

The hypothalamus is so important to the body's functioning that it is known as the brain's brain. This means that it controls the part of the nervous system regulating automatic and metabolic processes in the body. The hypothalamus controls body temperature, hunger and thirst, water balance and blood pressure. It links the nervous system to the endocrine system.

Read more at: Mercola reports

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

If you want to be healthy, you need to eat healthy, to exercise and to get outdoors. And to be happy.


Let's just start with eating healthy.

The first step to eating healthy is to substitute things that are good for you for things that are not. We'll start with this: get rid of all artificial sweeteners and sugar.


Yeah, yeah, and this is about becoming a new person, transformation, and that means: see if you can find a way to get excited about coming undone from stuckness in habits.

So, the sugar thing. Well, hell: people like the sweet taste. Fine, give yourself the sweet taste: apples, bananas, sweet potatoes, carrots, dates, mangos, pears, apricots and so on. If that isn't enough, use some raw honey, or raw agave syrup, or maple syrup.

Go sweet that is raw and natural.

But what about ice cream and cakes and all that food that people eat on their ways to cancer and heart attacks and obesity?

Skip it all.

But it taste good.

Sure. Think, look, figure it out: why does it taste good?


Okay. So let's make two lists, all of raw ingredients. You mix and match and make yourself something, either in a blender, or a bowl, or right together ( the tahini spread over the date, the almond and the raisin put into your mouth at the same time) to give yourself fat plus sweet = health.

Here goes:

Apple ........ Pecans
Banana ........ Walnuts
Figs ........ Tahini
Apricot ........ Sunflower seeds (soaked overnight)
Cherry ........ Pumpkin seeds (soaked overnight)
Tomato ........ Avocado
Date/ Raisin ........ Cashews (soaked overnight)
Grapes ........ Filberts (soaked overnight)
Persimmon ........ Flax seeds (soaked overnight)
Peaches ........ Coconut "Oil"
Berries ........ Almonds (soaked overnight)
Any fruit ........ Any nut or seed (soaked overnight)
Maple syrup ........ Raw nut butters (expensive )
Raw honey ........ Brazil nuts
Raw agave syrup ........ Macadamia nuts

It's straightforward. Mix and match from the left and right columns. Think of classic candy bars with almonds and chocolate (which you can add to any of the above mixes, using raw organic cacao nibs). Keep it raw. Since we are not only getting off of all the damage sugar creates, but moving toward all the health that raw promotes, go raw in the new habit.

Think of another classic, the Waldorf salad: celery, apples and walnuts, and think about doing that with your blends: adding some green to the fat and sweet to make it a salad, so some lettuce or spinach and some soaked seeds or almonds and some raspberries, say.

Your taste buds will love this and your body will too.

Why all the soaking? Seeds have natural enzyme inhibitors to keep the seeds from starting to grow until the seed is nice and wet. So a batch of sunflower seeds on a counter won't sprout. But they won't digest that well either. Soak them and the enzyme inhibitor will dissolve and you'll get one of the things you eat raw for: the enzymes.

The other reasons are flavor, simplicity and connectedness to nature and yourself. And immense benefits for health.

So, throw out everything with sugar in it. And start to mix and match and delight in your own raw and organic and wonderful fat and sweet combos.

Sunday, December 10, 2006


Food is good, food is God if you are hungry, really hungry and want to stay alive. Food is the fuel that keeps us moving, so we can move around and grow or harvest or hunt more food. And moving so we can touch each other and make love and make more of the species, which, at this point in the human / Earth dance seems not so necessary.

But, hey, skip the babies 'n make love, or make love and make (not many) babies, moving is good, moving is God, food is good, food is God.

What the hell is this chapter about?

Connecting to the present is one sort of food, the food of awareness. If we connect to our breathing as a way of connecting to the present, we are connecting to air, to the food of the middle of our beings. And when we eat food, especially healthy food, we are feeding the body part of our Selves.

Awareness for the mind, breathing for the lungs, food for the body. Or is it awareness for the Self, thinking/ learning for the brain, breathing for the middle and food for the body?

Doesn't matter.

We have many ways of feeding ourselves, and maybe these words will feed something in you, strike some chords, stimulate something that you already knew, and were close to knowing, or forgot and now remember: this life is precious, and to feed ourselves in an aware and healthy matter is a means of worship in a way.

And what is healthy food?




Organic and grown with love and good soil, soil that has been treated like God, like the creator that it is, like the miracle that it is. Soil that has been loved and feed is the soil we want our food from.

Food that we grow ourselves this way and wild food, that has to be the best for us. Fresh as in we pick it today and eat it today, if we can pull that off.

And if we can't have lots of fresh homegrown by ourselves food, we can perhaps have at least some flats of wheatgrass growing in a section of our kitchen or yard, and be perking up the soil of our wheatgrass with kelp and minerals from oyster shells and our own compost.

Food is good, food is god, food is fun, food is work, but this is work to create the fuel to live. Living is good and eating is good when we take in with love and pleasure what we need to have a healthy and wonderful life.

This is going in circles. Fine. So is life a circle. Eat, love, live, smile.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Offerings, Classes and Fees:
Wonderful to be alive.
Wonderful to be now.
Wonderful to return to love.
Wonderful to connect with earth, and body, and others and breath and now.

Coming up:
Saturday, January 13: 10 AM to 1 PM
Communication and enhancement of relationship
Parents and teenagers
Parents and children of any ages
See: For more details.Parent and Teenager Communication
Cost : $100, one parent and one child. $50 for each additional parent or child.

Feb. 10: Saturday, Feb. 10
10 AM- 1 PM, 3- 6 PM
Radically improving the Couples’ Thing.
Fair to good, good to great, great to amazing
Communications, sensuality, happiness, return to now
Change and wonders
Tasting the impossible: unconditional love
$160 per couple.
Family and Couples' Communication

Saturday, February 24 and Sunday, February 25
2 PM to 5 PM

Hands on Elbows

( Learning How to Learn.) Photo by Rosalie O'Conner.

Move with joy
Move with ease
Move with awareness
Move with learning.
$100 for both days. $75 for one.

See, if you wish,
What is the Feldenkrais Method®?



Functional Integration®: Amazing and Transformative (and feels great, too!)


Children with special needs

Back, Neck, Shoulder Pain

(Many, many more Possibilies.
Such as recover faster from surgery and stroke, improve mood, tennis, skiing, golf, yoga.

Functional Integration®:
Amazing and transformative
(and feels great, too!)
One to one individual lessons:

Anat Baniel demonstating

Anat Baniel demonstrating the hands on transformative work.
Photo: Josie Davenport,

In these lessons, you lie, fully clothed, on a comfortable and firm low table while you are moved with extreme gentleness and precision.

Classmate doing the work

Classmate doing the work.
Photo: Josie Davenport,

This not only feels great, but provides opportunities for your mind/ brain/ body system (i.e. you) to learn new
sweeter ways of functioning.

These new ways not only
begin to undo and transform stress
and our old habits of tensing and contracting and limiting ourselves,
you begin to function in better ways
in other areas of your mind/ body
and your life.

This work is transformational,
and almost miraculous.
You deserve this, I believe.

My training consists of the "normal" 160 days
to become a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner
an additional 115 days of training
including 38 with Anat Baniel
years of training in Gestalt, meditation,
nature centered healing, hypnosis, and more.

The initial commitment will be for at least 4 lessons.
If, after the initial four sessions, you aren't experiencing
2 to 10 times the improvement
any four sessons in any other system
has brought you,
I will cheerfully refund all your money.

The rate is $80-160 per lesson. $50-130 per lesson if on consecutive days.
Thursday morning is a low income, low fee clinic, lessons are $30-50.

Give yourself the gift of improvement,
from fair to good
good to great.

Call for an appointment 707-996-1437

Or Email me

Thanks, and I hope this is a beginning of a wonderful transformation in your life.



Byron Katie / Happiness Work

SEE: Learning by Healing, and Healing by Learning: Deep Tutoring for Real People

SEE: Enhancing Excellence, Learning Acceleration and Opening to Now

Sunday, November 26, 2006

The Benefits of the "Wake-Up" Feldenkrais Method®

Improve awareness
Improve mobility
More flexible brain

Transforming back pain, neck pain, shoulder pain, wrist pain and so on
Transforming and undoing "getting older" creakiness
Transforming accident, injuries, recovery and over-all vitality

Undo stress
Improve focus
More flexible "body" / life

Learn how to go about "problems" as glorious opportunities
Increase and enhance yoga, Pilates, martial arts

Reverse inflexibility and narrowing down of so-called "aging"
Transforming cerebral palsy, autism, MS, other neurological challenges
Recovery from stroke
Increase sports abilities
Encouraging a sense that "Anything's possible"
Younger brain
Smarter brain
Learning how to learn

Feel better
Feel taller
Improve awareness
Feel younger
Feel lighter
Move, think and breathe better
Better posture
Better acture (ability to move gracefully
in any direction)
Move, think and breathe better

Expanded horizons and
abilities to embrace change
in life

Transform unhappiness and depression
Avoid Surgery

Heal Much, Much more rapidly
from Surgery

Improve/ transform anyone's back.

Move better than you ever have before

Increase creativity
Increase skills in teaching yoga, tennis, golf, any sport, music, singing and so on

Learn quicker and more enjoyably in golf lessons, tennis lessons, music lessons, equestrian lessons

Improve inner connection
Improve/ transform "tennis elbow."
Improve/ transform " tai chi" knee.
Improve/ transform musician's elbow, hands, back.
Improve/ transform gardener's back.

Deepen abilities to "relax," release and de-stress
Transform and cure insomnia
Increase abilities to be present
Deeper connection to yourself
Clarity of thinking

Better walk, limp transformation.
Better circulation, lymph transformation.

Walk better, run better, sit better, sleep better
Transform dance, running, balance
Increase studying and learning abilities in children and adults
Decrease depression, anxiety, confusion

Better sex

Increase life clarity
Transformation of dyslexia, reading abilities improved, math abilities, too
Undoing stress
Natural Vision Improvement

Transforming injury
Reverse carpal tunnel, repetitive strain
Learn to work at computers without wrecking ourselves
Improve scoliosis

Return to youthfulness
Increase Learning
Improve breathing
Improve health
Improve balance
Increase confidence and curiosity

Become more Present

Copyright, Chris Elms, 2006

Contact, Phone: 707-996-1437

Email Chris Elms, M.A.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Some Steps Toward Healthy and Wondeful Eating

There are many ways to eat healthy and many ways to eat a crappy diet. Look around you and see all the crappy ways and we can skip that discussion for now, let's keep our attention on some wonderful aspects of life.

Here are some ways to eat wonderfully on this wonderful planet of ours:
  • Eat lots of stuff full of water. Which is to say: fruits and vegetables.

  • Eat lots of organic stuff, that is in season and comes from nearby. Sure, every once in a while have bananas, but to eat most healthy, eat local strawberries only when the summer is beginning and eat apples in the end of summer and the fall and eat tomatoes all summer and lots of greens in the spring. There are lots of books about this, but the Three Season Diet is pretty good.

  • If your meal isn't all raw food, eat fruit by itself, or half an hour before the meal.

  • Make your biggest meal in the middle of the day, or somewhere up until 3 or 4 in the afternoon. I know, I know, schedules, other people, habits, blah, blah, and still: this is good for your health.

  • Don't eat much at night, again, the habits here are strong, I know personally, and boy do I feel better the next morning when I don't eat a bunch at night.

  • Eat lots of wild things, if you can figure out how to do that, and lots of stuff from your own garden and trees.

  • See if you can have at least one raw foods only meal a day.

This is enough for a start. Food is fun, life is fun, there are always amazing things to eat and it doesn't have to be fancy and it doesn't even need to be cooked.

Breathing and being in love with life while we eat is probably the most important thing of all. Sometimes eating in silence is wonderful. It's all an experiment. It's all potentially wonderful.


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Neurological Upgrading Sessions

single rose

In these lessons, you either sit or lie down,
fully clothed,
on a firm and comfortable
table, chair, or bench.

You are guided
to being present
with yourself
and your breathing
and your awareness.

From that being present,
in easy and gentle increments,
you are guided,
by touch
and word,
to new and better feeling
of using yourself
and being in your body.

These lessons
to beginners
appear to be "body work."

back ease
neck ease
shoulder ease
grace and joy in movement
moving as if 20 years younger
ability to "work out" without the usual masochistic nonsense
discovery of whole new movement, dance and voice possibilities
discovery of the miracle of having a "body"

new ideas
trying new things in life
sudden creative urges
letting go of old, boring patterns
rekindling love of learning

the giggles
a sense of fun
a sense of mischief
a sense of humor
a sense of delight
loving other people
and yourself

These touch guided "lessons"

(a far gentler touch
than you may have ever

cactus flower

contribute to

  • increasing everyday joy,

  • decreasing depression and anxiety,

  • and can
  • radically improve thinking
    and problem solving abilities

  • Sports can get better

  • Sports coaches can radically improve their capabilities

  • High performers
    can improve their already fine level of skill

  • Musicians can learn to tune their bodies
    and their instruments at the same time

  • Carpal tunnel and the aches of sitting around too much,
    or repetitive work can transform

  • Actors and executives can be more in touch
    with an inner clarity
    and vitality

  • Cerebral palsy
    can undergo amazing transformation

  • ordinary aches and pains can be undone

  • and your

  • whole life

  • set out on a course of

  • improvement,

  • joy

  • and
  • learning

If that's not enough
for you
check out the list at

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Raw Foods and Feldenkrais:

There are lots of reasons to eat raw foods:

  • They taste good.

  • They give your body a wonderful feeling.

  • They help you eliminate sickness and colds.

  • They help you transcend all sorts of "diseases."

  • They are fun.

  • They are fast. No faster food than apple from tree to mouth.

  • They are fresh. No fresher food than tomato from vine to mouth.

  • They are amazing.

  • They are fun.

And what might be a Feldenkrais reason?
Well, to my mind, a core idea in Feldenkrais, especially WakeUp Feldenkrais, is that we are in habits in our life, some of which are so deep and unknown to us that the Gurdjieff understanding that we are going through our lives in a state of "sleep" is not too strong a way to put it.

And one of the greatest sleeps going on is around the mouth.


We put food in, we shovel it in. We taste maybe the first bite of each forkful. We think, talk, read, worry, hurry, stress while we are eating.
We eat what we are used to eating, what everyone else eats, what we were trained like baby seals to eat, when we were babies.

So, Feldenkrais and WakeUp Feldenkrais could say this, or does, via my versions: Stop eating cooked food for a couple of weeks.

Examine your habit.

See what happens.

That's all: do it for the love of learning and change and discovery.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Learning by Healing and Healing by Learning: Deep Tutoring for Real People

Sometimes we confront a "problem" that seems "impossible." Moshe Feldenkrais had a famous saying, that his work was about

"Making the impossible possible,
the possible easy, and
the easy elegant."

He also said that his work was about flexible minds, not flexible bodies.

So if a child or high school student is struggling in math,
or an adult is struggling to learn a musical instrument,
or a "senior citizen" is attempting to learn a new language,
or to skip again,
the process at the core of the Feldenkrais way,
and the Anat Baniel Method and
WakeUp Feldenkrais and

Earth Breath Smile (another name I'm going to be calling my work by), the core process is
changing our very being,
by tuning in to how to learn.

The healing is about becoming more present.

And more able to look at things in many ways.

And more free to explore the state of not yet knowing.

And more excited to learn even what our unknowing is all about.

The healing is in turning the problem to a source of joy and self discovery and a chance to be present.

I tutor small and large children and adults in any field from remedial math to calculus, from inability to speak to fancy literature, from learning the letters and first words to creative writing of poems and essays and songs.

I am interested in moving you in ways that wake up your or your child's deep abilities to learn and change and grow and be excited by all of life.

The math problem or the reading challenge or the calculus or the speech difficulty, the "stuckness" in writing poems or essays, the stumbling blocks in performance of dance, or even social dysfunction or shyness or self-doubt, all this is part of what I work with in helping people who come for "tutoring."

This work, like all I do,
has many layers and textures. Human beings are wonderfully complex
and to fail to take advantage of this is to hinder learning
and squelch vitality and love of life.

The one to one touch guided lessons are part of this.

EFT, Emotional Freedom Technique is part of this.

My background in Byron Katie and the freedom that provides from self-dislike and limitation is part of this.

Movement lessons from the Feldenkrais body of work, and from Yoga and from Tai Chi are part of this.

Connection to nature and gardens is part of this.

Telling and enjoying jokes is part of this.

Exploring and loving the Now is part of this.

Loving oneself is part of this.

Journal keeping and dream work is part of this.

It's big work, as all my work, not about fixing but about using the stuck places and the pain as springboards for transformation of a whole life.

This is wonderful work and I welcome you and your child, both to the adventure of learning by healing and healing by learning.

I require an initial commitment to at least three
lessons over a two week period.
Better in a one week period,
but sometimes schedules don't permit.

Lessons last half an hour to forty minutes.

Lessons cost $90-140 per lesson.

for those who wish to really
deepen their experience
and feel changes at a deeper level:
$75 per LESSON,
if you sign up for six
or more in a one month period.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Healing by Learning:

What's your definition of healing? To get better? To get rid of the pain, or the sickness? To get back on track toward wholeness? To increase well-being?

It's an interesting thing to think about, especially when we've got something bothering us, and , being normal human beings, we just want the bother to go away.

Here is one of the wonders of the Feldenkrais Method®. That we don't go after "fixing" and we get better results than anyone who goes after fixing.

How can that be?

A friend who came to me to "fix" his shoulder, asked this. He was amazed at the results, how in three days his S (more on that later) and his life were amazingly improved. He asked more or less this question, the question about how could we get such fine results, when we didn't seem to be trying to get results.

We seemed to be working with his brain and his spine and his ribs and his neck and his pelvis and his fingers and his elbows, and every once in awhile, we'd move this "stuff" up at the left side edge of his torso. This "stuff" was what I called all the ribs and shoulder blade and left upper arm and left collar bone, to keep away from the S word, since he "knew" his Shoulder was a huge mess. Moving the S was impossible, but he discovered this "stuff" could be moved quite easily, especially if he initiated the moving from his back and his sternum.

Hmm. We did a little of this and a little of that and the S would get more and more free and not only did we refrain from mentioning its name, we refrained from any movement that was what he traditionally thought of as moving of the S, though he got a nice laugh when I pointed out that there really is no such thing as the "shoulder."

Anyway: we were after improving the whole self, and the understanding of all sorts of moving and almost as a byproduct of that, his S got more and more dramatically "better."

And he asked why. And what came to mind was: think about a relationship that's in trouble. And you decide to fix it by telling each of the warring couple to say, "Please," when they wanted something. Surely that would help, but there's a lot going on in a relationship.

And there's a lot going on in a human mind/body, and to improve any aspect is to improve the whole.

And to improve the whole is to improve any aspect.

Which is to say, the S not only doesn't exist that way the thumb does, but is itself a functional conglomerate. Therefore, to heal the S means to heal all sorts of areas in the body and the mind. (And even to "heal" the thumb in the Feldenkrais way, would be to connect this "part" of ourselves back to as much of us as possible, from toes to nose to brain to breath to ribs. Herein lies the "solution" to all the "carpal tunnel" stuff.)

So, this is it: REAL HEALING IS ABOUT LEARNING, not about adjusting back to some previously unsatisfying and ignored status quo. This man had forgotten how to use his ribs and his neck and his pelvis and his spine and his eyes and his awareness in ways that could make his left S experience a pleasant and efficient one. We set out to learn how to use himself in new and interesting and easy and delightful and useful ways. The more we discovered, the more options he had, and his possibilities for change and improvement increased almost exponentially each new possibility we added.

So in three days, he was "fixed" as much as a friend of his had been fixed with three months of physical therapy.

And with this difference: he is on the way to having two S's that function better than they ever have in his life since he was a young and frisky lad. The other sort of "fix," the get 'em back to normal fix, and he'd have a left S that could function at a sort of get by mediocre level that was what he had in his "good" right S.

So by slowing down and taking lots of apparent detours, we get faster "fixing," because we aren't fixing, we are learning, learning to function and learning to learn.

Cool, eh?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


Tai Chi is Good for you

How come?

  • Because you move slow.

  • And you pay attention.

  • And you are standing up and moving from foot to foot.

  • Moving foot to foot is a good movement, e.g. walking.

  • You are having to concentrate on arms and legs at the same time.

  • You are potentially aware of breathing at the same time.

  • Breathing, sensing, moving and attention: all at the same time.

  • You are connecting to Earth and gravity and intention and moving.

  • You are moving slow.

  • You are moving in a circular manner. This relates to the Universe.

  • You are keeping awarenss on Below and Above. This also relates to the Universe.

  • If you are lucky, you are doing Tai Chi outside once or twice a day. This relates to the Earth.

  • If you keep a clear mind while doing Tai Chi, you will be happy. This relates to Life.

  • You are, if you are in the grove, enjoying yourself.

  • This is good, to move slow and to enjoy yourself.

  • This can be a fine meditation, a way to take our attention off the usual.

  • This can be a fine meditation, coming back to the present.

  • This can be good for our health because we get things moving.

  • This can be great for our health because we calm and happify our being.

  • And so on.

Feldenkrais could assist this process

In traditional Tai Chi, there is always the "right" way to be in each posture, and that's fine, except that in Feldenkrais we learn about learning. And we learn by making comparisons. And so, instead of just putting one foot here and the other back so many inches and to the side so many inches, we could experiment with how it actually "feels," in the good old here and now sensation, to put our two feet in all sorts of different lengths and widths apart.

In traditional Tai Chi, there is always a "right" way to place your hands and arms in each posture. Instead of just cramming ourselves into the "right" way, we can experiment, a little higher, a little lower, to the left, to the right, what about the elbows this way and that, what about the wrists.

In traditional Tai Chi, a good teacher will spend some serious time alerting the student to the transitions between the postures. With Feldenkrais, this awareness could be amplified, by taking these transitions and even within them creating variation and distinctions and possibilities.

In other words, all the wonderful things about Tai Chi could be made more wonderful with the addition of Feldenkrais. What if the weight, supposed to be 70% front foot and 30% back foot in some poses, was 80/20 or 50/50 or 90/10 ? What if the weight was on the inside of the foot, the outside, the heel, the toes? What about on the toes of one foot and the heel of the other?

And are we following our breathing now, even as we read about this?

Tai Chi, in going slow, already opens us to the possibilities of connecting with ourselves in a deep and profound and healing way. To add the variations and playful learning aspects of the Feldenkrais Work to this, is to simple give our minds and our bodies and our mind/bodies, to say nothing of our spirits, one more chance to expand and exult in this adventure, this adventure of being alive.

Monday, November 13, 2006


Grow your own, add tons of minerals to your life.

Marlie and I have this kind of nice system you might want to imitate in one form or another.

She decided to do the wheat grass thing and pulled out this old hand grinder she'd bought at a yard sale. We started to use it and it's great: quiet, and you can run the stuff through a couple of times and you can do apples and carrots and if you want and understand how super charged with nutrition they are, various edible weeds like mallow and pigweed and dock and lamb's quarters and purslane. ( Except purslane is so yummy, that if you have it, you'll want to throw it right in your salad or your mouth).

Then we discovered in our reading up on raw foods that juicers that press like the hand ones and some very expensive mechanical ones, get the highest percentage of good stuff out of the whatever you add, and they product a juice that oxidizes far slower than either that of masticating juicer ( like Champion), which in turn, is better than the centrifugal juicers.

So, it's quiet.

Lavender at the garden, Photo: Richard Dale

We get more goodies.

The juice oxidizes (much, much) slower.

Okay, here's the cool part. Reading in Body Electronics (see link in sidebar of WakeUp Feldenkrais site), I re-discovered how important chelated minerals are, which is to say, minerals that aren't just the chemicals, but are bound in plant form.

A light bulb went off: PLANT THE WHEAT BERRIES ( we sprout our own), IN SOIL THAT'S GOOD LOTS OF MINERALS.


So, voila, we are getting gobs of chelated minerals without paying a big batch that you would to get them in a bottle.

Anyway, try this if you want. Hand juicers can be ordered via Wheat Grass Kits. Scroll down to look at four manual juicers.

See here for a Healthy Juicer Rap on How Great Wheat Grass is For Ya!


Birdhouse in the Garden Photo: R. Dale

We look up and what do we see? Rain or clouds or sky or stars or deep dark night.

This is good for the soul.

This is good for the eyes.

This is good for the person, the people, to get out into the fresh air and look at the sky and see: this is what I'm breathing. This is good.

And to feel our feet on the Earth, and know, this is what I'm standing on, this is what I'm walking on. This is good.

Between Earth and sky, betwixt Earth 'n Heaven, this is our place and a good one 'tis, indeed.

Sunday, November 12, 2006


Hollyhock FlowerPhoto: R. Dale

This work
is "work"
in the sense a baby "work"
to learn to sit up, to roll over,
to crawl,
to walk.

It is a miracle
and expansion
who we are,
and what we know of ourselves,
and what we can
in this glorious life.

This method
is of huge benefit
to those already
good at
some skill:

tai chi,
all the sports, such as
tennis, golf, skiing,
horseback riding,
baseball, basketball, football,
martial arts.

To be in the moment,
each moment that we are,
is the enlightened state,
it's the state that Phil Jackson
in his champion Chicago Bulls
Michael Jordan..

and centeredness
worked for them.

It will work
for you.

Saturday, November 11, 2006


Beauty in a garden Photo: R. Dale

When you are fit and healthy you feel good, you enjoy being alive and in your body and moving around. You like how it feels to be you and you like how it feels to move.

You rarely if ever get sick, you can walk a couple of miles and enjoy the heck out of it, you love to get outdoors, you can skip and dance and act in new and spontaneous ways. You are alive and happy to be alive.

Fitness and health require not much, but they are more or less absolute requirements:

  • To eat in a healthy and joyful way
    (Whch means lots of food,
    but nutrient and water rich food,
    and at the right times.)

  • To get healthy and happy exercise.

  • To spend time in nature.

  • To be at peace with oneself and those we live with.

  • Which includes a sense of humor, and

  • An ability, and desire, to experiment, and explore and discover
    outside of old habits and patterns

  • To practice and cultivate AWARENESS
    (See posting Weight Loss and Wake Up Feldenkrais)

  • All of this leads us:

  • To be happily engaged in life.

To change habits,
wake up to the present
and to be present while eating,
and to lose weight:

We'll include examination of habits.
The ways to eat even more and lose weight.
Patterns of exercise and making that more fun.
A commitment to being outside each day at least twice.
Drinking water.
Getting free of emotional baggage with the wonderful work of Byron Katie.
Comminicating in joy.
Maybe more, if we have time.

Change your self
Upgrade your health
Upgrade your vitality
Lose Weight:
10 week Radical Health Improvement and Weight Reduction Program.

And what are some components of eating in a "healthy way." Well, one is to trust your intuition,
so don't get too hooked on anyone's rules, including mine.

And then, here are some hints,
and some essays that begin to reveal these hints:

1) Involve wheat grass in your well being. Super Wheatgrass for Your Health

2) Think about raw foods as a chance to radically live non habitually for awhile: Raw Foods and Feldenkrais

3) Begin to re-evaluate the whole eating thing: Raw Foods and Feldenkrais

4) Start to think of food as God: Food is Good

5) Find a way out of the sugar thing: Beyond Sugar: Raw Fat plus Raw Sweet = Great Taste, Great Health

6) Understand getting refined flours and sugars out of your eating world: Food and Health

7) Experiment with nutrient rich, raw food meals, as in a smoothie breakfast: Start the day off right with a Super Smoothie

8) Learn food combining, and consider lunch as the main, big meal: Food Combining, Healthy Lunch, Main Meal

9) Make supper in the old meaning a time of a light "soup:" Supper to end the day, as in... making it light.

The health and weight loss program consists of 10 one on one meetings over 10 weeks. The meetings are about an hour. We deal with emotional issues, gradual shifts in eating habits, the creation of and enjoyment of a program of engagement in using yourself, which could be yoga, walking ( the BEST program for human beings), tai chi, gardening, bicycle riding.

Feldenkrais movements and one on one touch guided ( fully clothed, gentle, miraculous= Functional Integration®)lessons will be part of this,
as will the work of Byron Katie to undo all the myths we use to hold ourselves back.
Meditation and art and hypnosis all could be part of this.

Here are the possible parts to this joyful and wonderful opportunity:

  • Weight loss if you so desire.

  • Radical improvement in your diet, if you so desire.

  • A clearer path of moving.

  • A deeper and more pleasant connection to yourself.

  • Improved breathing and happiness.

  • Happier and more clear thinking, if you so desire.

  • Trying new eating habits and patterns.

  • Undoing mental and physical stress.

  • Undoing emotional stress.

  • Having fun with / embracing change.

  • Getting clear on what you are "waiting' / "weighting" for.

  • A deeper understanding of yoga and tai chi as possible everyday health friends.

  • A deeper and clearer commitment to being outside and in touch with nature.

  • The Work of Byron Katie: clear up the past, clean up relationships, get clear. (See

  • The Work of Byron Katie: stop being mean to yourself sessions,

  • Body Talk™ or EFT sessions.

  • Feldenkrais lessons.

  • WakeUp Feldenkrais lessons.

  • Setting up "exercise" that's fun. ( Walking, rolling around, sex.)

  • Ericksonian hypnosis, if you so desire.

  • Raw Foods, if you want to leave almost all, if not all, sicknesses behind.

The program is about becoming more alive and
and healthy
and clear
and spontanrous in living
and weight reduction is more or less a side benefit.

Lessons cost $60-$150 per lesson
you pick the amount

for staggering changes
start off with three times one
and then three times the next week

Lessons last thirty minutes.

Friday, November 10, 2006


grape arbor in background
(Photo Richard Dale)

A little bit of stress is what happens in learning: the world is new and different than we are used to and we have to reframe or readjust or heighten our sense of awareness and connection to rise to the occasion.

However, too much stress is bad for our health and our inner peace and our whole sense that life is good and beneficent and wonderful.

Too much stress gets in the way of how we want to be : optimistic and in love with ourselves and with life.

And how to undo this "too much stress?"

Two ways.

One: by coming into the present.
By being mindful of right now,
this present breath,
our present connection to gravity,
this present light coming in our eyes,
this present sound coming in our ears.
In this present of the present
we leave behind the worrying about the future and
the resentments and regrets about the past.

We come "home"
who we really are:
peaceful and awareness
and grateful to

We come back home
to a calm and peaceful and powerful place.

Two: by learning.
Any learning increases our connection to the wonder of life
and makes us pleased and joyful to be alive.

And the core to Feldenkrais work is learning
and discovery.

And the core to WakeUp Feldenkrais work
is awareness
and learning
and the delight of
being in the now moment
of discovery.

By combining Feldenkrais work and mindfulness work
we can undo stress sweetly and effectively.

And feel wonderful, once again,
our birthright.

This can take part of one on one sessions, or as part of the Tuesday night group (for the winter), 5:30 PM.
The group will meet for an hour each week, and will cost $44 per month. A three month commitment is required.

I also offer lessons in a one to one format called Functional Integration®.

In these lessons, you lie, fully clothed, on a comfortable and firm low table while I move you with extreme gentleness and precision.

This not only feels great, but provides opportunities for your mind/ brain/ body system (i.e. you) to learn new
sweeter ways of functioning.

These new ways not only
begin to undo and transform stress
and our old habits of tensing and contracting and limiting ourselves,
you begin to function in better ways
in other areas of your mind/ body
and your life.

This work is transformational,
and almost miraculous.
You deserve this, I believe.

The initial commitment will be for at least 4 lessons.

The rate is $80-160 per lesson. $50-130 per lesson if on consecutive days.
Thursday morning is a low income, low fee clinic, lessons are $30-50.

Call for appointment 707-996-1437

Or email me at Email me

Thanks, and I hope this is a beginning of a wonderful transformation in your life.


Thursday, November 09, 2006

Going from poor to fair,
from fair to good,
from good to great,
and great to greater.

Pain is a pain.
Beauty gardens hollyhockPhoto: Richard Dale

Pain is a signal, we aren't functioning the way we are meant to function.

the story is the same:
the brain and the body have forgotten
how to work in an easy and elegant manner,
the manner in which we evolved
as human beings,
and have lost.
We have been educated and conditioned away
from our natural ease and elegance and grace
by our sedentary and stressful and
un-nature oriented lives.

Pain is an opportunity:
to learn,
to improve,
to come to a level of moving and functioning and being
that is better than any
since we were youngsters and rolling and jumping and skipping around all the time.

The human wish, is to
"get rid"
of the pain as fast as possible.
This makes "sense,"
and in the Feldenkrais Method,
we have almost miraculous results.

But we are after something bigger,
something more profound:
an understanding of how we
can move and feel and think
and act creatively
in better
and easier
and fresher ways.

As Moshe said, this about,
"Making the impossible possible,
the possible easy
and the easy elegant."

See if you wish, an essay on a three day, three session Miracle lesson, in working with the shoulders as an examination and illumination of this. Healing by Learning.

And for a much longer examination of this, you could enjoy Anat Baniel on Pain, which has links to videos and research and related articles.

I offer individual lessons,
called Functional Integration.

This is not massage. Not physical therapy. Not chiropractic oriented.
Not body work.
This isn't about "fixing."

This is brain food, and body learning, and heart food, and soul food.
This is about transformation

This not only feels great, but provides opportunities for your mind/ brain/ body system (i.e. you) to learn new
sweeter ways of functioning.

These new ways not only
begin to undo and transform stress
and our old habits of tensing and contracting and limiting ourselves,
you begin to function in better ways
in other areas of your mind/ body
and your life.

This work is transformational,
and almost miraculous.
You deserve this, I believe.

My training consists of the "normal" 160 days
to become a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner
an additional 154 days of training
including 67 with Anat Baniel
years of training in Gestalt, meditation,
nature centered healing, hypnosis, and more.

Lessons last forty minutes.

Lessons cost $90-140 per lesson.

for those who wish to really
deepen their experience
and feel changes at a deeper level:
$75 per LESSON,
if you sign up for six
or more in a one month period.

If you combine 20 lessons
with 20 minutes of HomePlay ( not HomeWork)
a day,
You can expect to Move
and Feel

You can keep learning up to almost as many lessons as you are
years old,
depending how far you want to come on the path of
poor to fair,
fair to good,
good to great,
great to greater.

In large and small
of your
Whole Life.

Give yourself the gift of improvement,
from fair to good
good to great.

Call for an appointment 707-996-1437

Or Email me

Thanks, and I hope this is a beginning of a wonderful transformation in your life.


Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Sometimes children need help by being challenged in ways that school or homeschool or their coaches, no matter how excellent, might not come up with.


Garden Beauty
Photo: R. Dale
This work is superb for this, since the Feldenkrais work is based on a sublime principle...THAT THE CORE OF BEING HUMAN IS OUR ABILITY TO LEARN... and since this work likes to shake up the ongoing habit/ balance/ equilibrium to create a temporary discomfort and feeling of "I don't know," that leads to real breakthrough and understanding.


And in the Feldenkrais work and the WakeUp Feldenkrais work, that improvement is about honing our awareness and increasing our delight in discovering what is just beyond what we already know. ( This isn't about "pushing the edge," though, except with the courage to experiment and play with and enjoy the new. The struggle and effort to "improve," often makes hell for anyone and everyone).

If we aren't thrown into "I don't know," we never learn, and in the Feldenkrais work, especially WakeUp Feldenkrais with it's emphasis on being present, this state of converting the unknown to a sense of adventure and learning is paramount.

For amusement and learning, if you haven't read it, my explanations (true to the Feldenkrais Method, in about 12 different ways) of the method is quite good, and has a list of about 12 more essays on this subject. Peruse, if you wish What is..The Feldenkrais Method®?

Because core to this work is following the strategies of learning we used when we were a young genius and learned language from nothing, and crawling with no one to imitate, this work can stimulate anyone in the world to increase their abilities in either something they are already good in, or expand out and begin to establish proficiency in some totally new field.

THE CORE OF THE WORK IS LEARNING HOW TO LEARN. So for gifted children, this work can indeed be a gift.

To be certified in Feldenkrais requires 160 days of training. I have taken 111 days beyond this, including 27 in Anat Baniel's advanced Mastery Training for working with Children with Special Needs.Please read further, if you wish: Children with special needs by Anat Baniel.

If you want to bring me to a group, or your family, or your team, I can arrange amazing lessons that increase thinking, moving, understanding, co-ordination, the whole Glories of Feldenkrais thing. The lessons are $100 per hour for however many people you bring together. And you'll need to commit to at least 6 lessons.

I also offer lessons in a one to one format called Functional Integration®.

In these lessons, you lie, fully clothed, on a comfortable and firm low table while I move you with extreme gentleness and precision.

This not only feels great, but provides opportunities for your mind/ brain/ body system (i.e. you) to learn new
sweeter ways of functioning.

These new ways not only
begin to undo and transform stress
and our old habits of tensing and contracting and limiting ourselves,
you begin to function in better ways
in other areas of your mind/ body
and your life.

This work is transformational,
and almost miraculous.
You deserve this, I believe.

My training consists of the "normal" 160 days
to become a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner
an additional 127 days of training
including 49 with Anat Baniel
years of training in Gestalt, meditation,
nature centered healing, hypnosis, and more.

I require an initial commitment
of 4 lessons to 6 lessons over a two week period.

If you want guarantees,
come to 6 lessons
3 days in a row one week,
3 days in a row the next,
and if you haven't experienced
transformative changes
in this time,
I'll cheerfully refund all your money.

Lessons last half an hour to forty minutes.

Stand alone lesson (less than once a week,
only after the initial four or six): $120.

Once a week (again, only after initial four or six): $100 per lesson.
Two days in a row: $90 per lesson.
Three days in a row: $80 per lesson.
Four or five days in a row: $70 per lesson.

Give yourself the gift of improvement,
from fair to good
good to great.

Call for an appointment 707-996-1437

Or Email me

Thanks, and I hope this is a beginning of a wonderful transformation in your life.


Tuesday, November 07, 2006


One word: Learning.
Hands on Elbows
An Awareness Through Movement® lesson. Photo by Rosalie O'Conner.

Two words: Expanding horizons

Three words: Awareness through Movement

Four words: Learning how to Learn

Five words: Move, think, feel, breathe better

Six words: Expanding horizons thru Learning and Awareness

    For a List of Many
    Fantastic Benefits,
    The Glories of Feldenkrais

    If a picture is worth a thousand words,
    scroll down the page and watch a three minute
    video on the two facets of the Feldenkrais Method,
    especially as the world's most intelligent and effective
    way to transform pain.

    And now for a sequential building
    of viewpoints on the question:
    What is the Feldenkrais Method?

    One sentence:
  • This is a system of mind/body whole self learning based on how we learned when we were a genius, which is to say, how we learned to roll over and sit up and crawl and walk and talk when we were babies.

  • Two sentences:
  • This is a way of learning how to learn, based on the primacy of movement in life in general and human life in particular.

  • Our brains are set up to learn, and moving is the most primary way our brains were set into motion (literally and figuratively) to learn, and learning by moving with awareness is the quickest and sweetest way to radically improve almost anything in our lives.

  • Three sentences:
  • We are alive and amazing and have a brain that loves to learn.

  • By going slow and minimizing effort and looking to reduce unnecessary effort and concentrating on the process rather than achievement, we can radically improve the quality of our movement and our being.

  • This work, being about learning, consists of lessons and these lessons can be with verbal instruction, as Awareness Through Movement® lessons, or touch guided lessons, called Functional Integration®

  • Four sentences:
  • A man named Moshe Feldenkrais (1904-1984) had a smart and curious nature and loved sports and thinking and wrecked his knees and set about learning how to heal himself.

  • He succeeded.

  • The ways he discovered involved returning to a discovery and playfulness as well as understanding that we function as mind/body unities and that connection and relationship and inner functioning/organization were what brought about change.

  • He discovered, and created ways for others to discover, inner learnings and possibilities of transformation, for both "body" and our whole lives, that had previously been considered "impossible."

  • Five sentences:
  • Human beings, more than any other creature on this planet, are dependant on learning to become who they are in life.

  • Some of what we learn is stupendous, to walk, talk, play dodge ball, find a mate and some of what we learn is "bad habits," ways of moving and interacting and thinking and feeling that contradict our having a rich and full life.

  • A man named Moshe Feldenkrais, 1904-1984, discovered, in the course of healing his own wrecked knees, that by focusing on the learning that takes place in the brain and the brain/body, he could achieve spectacular results in people as varied as children with cerebral palsy and star professional basketball players or world class musicians.

  • Freedom from being stuck in habits and patterns that aren't working, can be achieved by learning OPTIONS in ways we move, think and go about living.

  • This system can seem "slow," because it focuses on the little places that are missing in our inner connection and awareness, and yet, because it fills in these missing areas, is much "faster" at achieving real and organic and long term improvement and transformation.

  • And here's what some others have to say. It's a big system, kind of like ( in many, many ways) answering the question:

  • Learning How to Learn copyright 1997, by Dennis Leri, my Feldenkrais Trainer. Maybe read this one first.

  • What the Feldenkrais Method Is and What Does it Do? via the Feldenkrais Guild

  • Felden What?, by Larry Goldfarb, PhD

  • Overview by MaryBeth Smith

  • Walking on Volcanoes a poetic exploration of the Feldenkrais Method by Lynette Reid

  • The Legacy of Moshe Feldenkrais by Anat Baniel
  • and
  • How Long Does is Take? by Gabrielle Pullen

  • Here's some prior, longer versions I've written over the last couple of years:

  • Who was Moshe Feldenkrais?

  • A New Way of Learning: What Is, Possibilities and Feldenkrais

  • Feldenkrais and our Big Self

  • Intro Number Four: Learning as the Core

  • Intro Number Two: The Elusive Obvious, Movement is Central to Life

  • Feldenkrais Work as Science, Judo, Learning

  • Feldenkrais and Judo and a little history

  • What is the Feldie Method, Differentiation and (always) more

  • If you do a blog search of on Feldenkrais, you
    are bound to find many more essays.

  • And the only way to really savor and enjoy and benefit
    from all these wondrous possibilities
    is to come on in
    and try it for yourself.

I offer lessons in a one to one format called Functional Integration®.

In these lessons, you lie, fully clothed, on a comfortable and firm low table while I move you with extreme gentleness and precision.

This not only feels great, but provides opportunities for your mind/ brain/ body system (i.e. you) to learn new
sweeter ways of functioning.

These new ways not only
begin to undo and transform stress
and our old habits of tensing and contracting and limiting ourselves,
you begin to function in better ways
in other areas of your mind/ body
and your life.

This work is transformational,
and almost miraculous.
You deserve this, I believe.

My training consists of the "normal" 160 days
to become a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner
an additional 115 days of training
including 38 with Anat Baniel
years of training in Gestalt, meditation,
nature centered healing, hypnosis, and more.

The initial commitment will be for at least 4 lessons.

The rate is $80-150 per lesson. $50-100 per lesson if on consecutive days.
Thursday morning is a low fee clinic, lessons are $30-50.

Give yourself the gift of improvement,
from fair to good
good to great.

Call for an appointment 707-996-1437

Or Email me

Thanks, and I hope this is a beginning of a wonderful transformation in your life.



A longer, and yet still short, biography, written by Mark Reese, can be found at the Feldenkrais Guild website, Mark Reese on Feldenkrais. I never met Feldenkrais, and I have only stories from books and people who studied with and knew him, and my own concoction and possibly fabrication from those stories.

Doesn't matter
He invented a system I love to learn and to use, with my own learning and development and waking to the present and with anyone else who wishes to move easier, or heal quicker, or learn faster, or even be happier.


Yes indeed, this can result in your being happier. If you start rolling around again, the way you did when you were a kid, you'll be happier. If you start to walk with a spring in your step instead of a painful shuffle, you'll be happier. If you can discover ways of not getting into pain that used to be a constant companion, then you'll be happier. If you discover new ways of thinking and feeling than your old familiar unsuccessful ways, you'll be happier. If you start to venture out and do some of the dreams and actions you've been waiting around to do for years, you'll be happier.

None of which says much about who Moshe was, and that's fine. To hear him talk on tapes, or to read his lectures that were spoken is to appreciate the value of wandering toward the goal, discovering along the way.

This is who he was: a discoverer. A curious person who got in a jam, and when the official way out was not acceptable ( the famous 50/50 chance of walking again if his knees were operated on way back in the days when knee operations weren't a secondary fad to the hip replacement fad), decided to find his own way out of the jam.

He studied anatomy. He studied learning systems. His wife was a pediatrician. My story is that he studied and thought about childhood development a lot. He studied himself, and learned that not only did he need to reorganize himself physically to help his knees, but he needed to reorganize the way he'd been playing soccer, which was to go about winning with such ferocity, that harming himself was considered a normal price to pay. He learned that learning requires slowing down, and that it requires going about things in new and unknown ways.

This is almost the definition of learning: to be pushed into the unknown and make it at least slightly known. The core chunk to learning is noticing differences, but when those differences show us a world we didn't know before, or options we hadn't realized previously, then real, deep human learning takes place.

Moshe Feldenkrais is famous for his huge curiosity and so the study of Ericksonian hypnosis and Gurdjieff philosophy/psychology and good old fashioned Eastern acupuncture were part of his exploration, as well as all things medical and scientific about learning or movement ( there wasn't much when he was coming up with his theories and practices).

So, he lived from 1904 to 1984. He walked from Poland to Palestine with some friends when he was young. He made his living as a laborer and went to night school. He developed an interest in Judo. He went to Paris, studied with Curie. The facts you can get from Mark's article. He understood from observation and studying Gurdjieff that a, if not the, central human dilemma is a kind of sleep, or unawareness to our lives as we are living them, which led to an inability to change and hence an inability to actualize our dreams and deep wishes. His so-called bodywork, was really soul work, in this way: to free our minds from the idea that we have to always do and be what we've always done and who we've been is the underlying aim of his work.

He transformed and re-invented himself and he invites the same from us.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Well, well: blogger gives you a fair amount of room, but once I start to think of movies and books, it could go on.
So why not?
Here goes:

Kinky Boots
Worlds Fastest Indian
Good Night and Good Luck
Constant Gardener
Lost in Translation
African Queen
The Great Escape
Ladies in Lavender (tame but nice)
Napoleon Dynamite
Monsieur Ibrahim
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Lost in Translation
Winged Migration

Bend it like Beckham
Rabbit Proof Fence
Big Fat Greek Wedding
Real Women Have Curves
Italian for Beginners
Monsoon Wedding (almost great)
Tortilla Soup
Anniversary Party
High Fidelity
Say Anything
Pump up the Volume
( Most of this list came from working back on the Sebastiani Theater calendars. Ditto, the great list).

The first 3 Star Wars, were great at first,
now are good.
Rocky I, also, great slurping down to good
Most of the romance movies are good at best,
all the Meg Ryan things, French Kiss and so on
though 4 Weddings and Funeral and Green Card might stand up to time

My Bodyguard
Beauty and the Beast (cartoon version,
black and white Cocteu version is probably
well within the Great section,
though it has faded in memory)

Rebel movies:
Repo Man
Pump up the Volume
The Great Escape
Various martial arts fluff/breathless wonder
Pee Wee's Big Adventure
It's a Mad, Mad World
Young Frankenstein


Africa great movies:
Hotel Rwanda
The Gods Must be Crazy
Blood Diamond
The Constant Gardener

Akeelah and the Bee
Little Miss Sunshine
The King of Masks
Princess Bride
Cinderella Man
An Inconvenient Truth
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
Love Actually

(whole family)
Wizard of Oz
Fly Away Home
Secret Garden
Singing in the Rain

black and white ones
To Have and to Have Not ( for Bogie and Lauren Bacall)
Beauty and Beast
Last Picture Show
Streetcar Named Desire
Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
Mr. Hulot's Holiday
Charlie Chaplin movies
Buster Keaton
there must be more, remind me.....

Mad Hot Ballroom
Born into Brothels
Girl in the Cafe (Do not read back of DVD cover, just watch and be surprised)
Hotel Rwanda
Fahrenheit 911
Being John Malkovitch
American Beauty
The Station Agent
Whale Rider
Fly Away Home
The Truman Story
Mostly Martha
Rivers and Tides
Monster's Ball
Bread and Tulips
O Brother Where Art Thou?
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
And Now, Ladies and Gentlemen

The Tall Man with One Red Shoe
Mon Uncle D'Amerique

The Speed of Life

Heavy and "great" (i.e. good for you, but actually good, too)
Madame Bovary
Sound and Fury
Heart of Darkness (read for laughs, as well as great literature)
Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man

My Year of Meats
All over Creation
History of Love
In and Out of the Garbage Pail, Fritz Perls
Eva Luna
In Search of the Miraculous
Motherless Brooklyn
White Oleander
various mysteries I can't remember, say Robert Parker,
certainly Raymond Chandler, maybe one of the women detectives

Latest author binge:
Virginia Woolf: Mrs. Dalloway
Room of One's Own
The Waves

Moby Dick

WWII amazing authors:
Kurt Vonnegut: Slaughterhouse Five
Plus his others: Cat's Cradle, Breakfast of Champions and so on
Joseph Heller: Catch 22
plus : Good as Gold

The Russians:
War and Peace
Brother Karamazov
Anna Karena

All the Nasrudin books by Idries Shah
Plus: Tales of the Dervishes

The Ladies Detective Series, sweet and intelligent
One Hundred Years of Solitude
This Book will Save your Life

One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest (only book, movie great combo),
Marcovaldo (Italio Calvino)
Boyhood with Gurdjieff

A Pattern Language
Permaculture: A Designer's Manual
An Earth User's Guide to Permaculture

Moshe Feldenkrais by and about:
The Elusive Obvious
Awareness Through Movement
Awareness Heals

Aunt Julia and the Screenwriter
The Corrections
Shipping News
Cold Mountain
Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime
Motherless in Brooklyn

Most anything by Italo Covino

Animal Dreams, Barbara Kingsolver
Prodigal Summer, ditto
Dreams of My Russian Summers
Ten Little Indians, Sherman Alexie
Reservation Blues, ditto
Toughest Indian in the World, ditto