When we say we’re “bone tired”, what does that really mean?
It means tired to our core, not just sleepy. It refers to a feeling of depletion – that we’ve drawn upon our vital stores of energy, which are now in need of replenishment.
In Chinese medicine and philosophy, the energy that flows through the bones is called “ancestral chi”. It is not the energy we make through life actions such as eating, digesting, being productive, interacting socially. Ancestral chi is the life force that all living beings receive. You can imagine each living thing sharing this ancestral chi – we are all arrayed on the genetic tree of life. The living blade of grass is as alive as I am. Humans, of course, have the unique capacity to consciously realize what an incredible gift it is to be alive.
We’ve all heard of and experienced muscle fatigue and the restorative powers of massage therapy to address it. What about the even more critical level of deep fatigue? When we are bone-tired, we have depleted our ancestral chi; we have made excessive withdrawals from our core energy stores. When we’re bone tired, we say we are “spent”.
Zero Balancing is the unique manual therapy that addresses, among other things, this fundamental level of health, health at the level of bone structure and energy.
As massage therapists we are taught to work with the musculo-skeletal system. However, the skeletal side of that equation usually receives surprisingly little attention! Zero Balancing addresses this imbalance and this healing need by emphasizing the skeletal side of the musculo-skeletal equation. In doing so, it is, surprisingly, the only therapy that aims at dramatic revitalization through the skeletal system!
In the Bible, the Book of Ezekiel talks about dry bones being brought back to life. What does this, the Bible says, is “ruah”. “Ruah” means both breath and spirit – “the divine animating force without which no life is possible.” In Ezekiel the prophet is dramatically told to call upon the winds to come from the four corners of the earth and give these bones life.
Let us remind ourselves of the fundamental roles living bone plays in our health.
· Support – Bones provide a framework for the attachment of muscles.
· Protection – Bones such as the cranium, pelvis, and rib cage protect internal organs from injury.
· Posture – Bones support us in the gravitational field through their tensile strength.
· Movement – Bones enable body movement by acting as levers within the musculo-skeletal system.
· Mineral storage – Bones serve as reservoirs for calcium and phosphorus, essential minerals for cellular activities throughout the body. Bones contain 99% of your body’s calcium supply!
· Blood cell production – The production of blood cells occurs in the red marrow found within the cavities of certain bones.
· Energy storage – Fats stored in adipose cells of the yellow marrow serve as an important energy reservoir.
How does Zero Balancing revitalize these living bones and through them other key functions in our body, mind and spirit? And what is the energy anatomy and physiology of bone and ancestral chi?
Stay tuned for my next blog entry for more on Zero Balancing and the role of bone and ancestral chi in our lives…
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There are just a few places left in the 25-hour training Zero Balancing I on January 27-30 at TLC. For David Lauterstein’s article on Zero Balancing from the Massage Therapy Journal click here.