Franis (dialoguers) wrote,

Removing Assumptions of Thinking

Rather than replacing a "bad" conditioning with a "good" one, practicing Alexander Technique on oneself removes conditioning. This requires learning or cultivating a willingness to tolerate and utilize unknown or unexplained results. It also involves how to apply discretion and judgment while selecting for results that will help you. Other than selling effortlessness as a means, goals are usually left to the student.

It has similar benefits to uncovering assumptions of thought which is a goal while in Dialogue. Only with Alexander Technique, you're also studying the ways how you carry out intentions, as well as how you respond and react to what comes at you.

Everyone has built up kinesthetic assumptions about how they should move to direct their actions to answer an intention. These assumptions, expressed in moving, are often quite unnecessarily heavy-handed or outdated. If you train yourself well, habit become innate. This means habits disappear and run automatically without you even noticing. If you has gotten used to being heavy-handed while training yourself - or you forgot what you already are doing, you can be habituated to
simultaneously moving in opposing directions. That's why people feel tense.

New discoveries can be applied selectively, in theory. But sometimes in the dismantling process, you can disorient even your self-image or balance. Or you may feel as if you cannot speak or move. What you are getting is weird feelings about experiencing too much freedom. Some people decide this is alarming; all their self-preservation convictions freak out, so the teacher or situation must reassure them that nothing dangerous is happening - when really, the unfamiliar is exceptionally dangerous. The AT teacher knows ways to make it quite safe so that anyone can feel just a little weird - and their habit is always available for retreat. To want to experiment takes some daring and fearlessness, which some people lack, so often that must be trained. But that would be training a new skill of dealing with feeling unfamilarity, rather than returning to a former state that was more essential. Being able to dare to speak or move easier anyway, despite not feeling like yourself, is a new skill that can be "conditioned."

The sensation of effortlessness and weirdness is the signal you're heading into new territory. If it has a characteristic of more freedom, you might be able to make a discovery - but that's a challenge because the state often doesn't have words to formulate the new information. You
cannot decide beforehand what the unknown will be "like." Each time you're heading out into new territory.

In my case, my earlier form of conditioning concerning ways concerning the way I learned to walk as a toddler was not "more cohererent." But for most people the way they learned to walk as toddlers was an excellent use of energy. Another common comment would be that more freedom feels like "coming home." So this person would agree with you - they're uncovering a more essential state of coordination that was cultivated and conditioning as a child.

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