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Sensation Science & Life Literacy

Next Generation of Trainers

Sensation Science & Life Literacy

By on November 20, 2010

Reflect on what Nia means when referring to science, and discuss how science impacts Nia's education, methods, practice and approach to sensory-based communication.

The story I had been telling myself:  "The topic of 'Science' in and of itself brings me outside of my comfort zone.  Reading and writing about science is an uncomfortably challenging stretch.  I'm in over my head."  I witness the Steiner reader set off an age-old mental tape of assumptions about the way my mind works and the way my mind does not work.  With fondness and relief, I revisit my agreement with self that I am "willing to suck" in my Nia journey. ;)  And then I find I am able to crawl underneath my habitual assumptions and recognize that one of Steiner's underlying themes resonates loud and clear:  “torn out… of his own inner life,” “lost,” “tore… loose,” “severed,” “sunders,” “divorced,” “torn away,” “desiccated and lifeless,” etc.  Steiner's descriptions of disconnect and a need for healing resonate within me, and resonate with the way I see humans around me walking through the world.  I think of the words Cultural Decapitation that I landed on years ago to describe what I see in so many bodies and behaviors around me, my own certainly included.  It is what I have been working and playing to heal in myself through my relationship with Nia, and what I invite others to heal in their own bodies and lives.  This recognition of being able to relate to one of Steiner's themes gave me the green light to approach the topic of Science.

Then, Debbie's words gave me the desire to open up and dive in.  "Reclaim yourself as a Sensation Scientist."  Debbie's invitation sparked Science within my cells.  No, my mind does not relate easily to the abstraction of Science.  But viewing my life as my laboratory, I shift from Mind-dominated Mebs being (emotionally driven, with body and spirit faded into the background) into BMES being who has been sensing her way through the evidence since first meeting Nia at age 25.  Before then, I did my best to fit into the white coat world of academics and pursue my college degree head-first, headstrong.  From a perspective of academic ability, I knew I should have been able to do it.  Yet, almost every semester, instead of a final grade in my classes, I ended up with a psychiatrist's note in hand, an appointment with a Dean, and a Medical Leave of Absense due to clinical depression and anxiety disorders.  And every time, I'd follow doctors' recommendations that I needed to change or increase or shift medications.  So I'd wait for the medications to "fix" me and gear up for the next round of classes, which inevitably turned into the next round of drugs when I once again had to admit that my mind wasn't able to push itself through the semester.  White Belt stirred within me the recognition that my pursuing a formal college education through cycles of recurring depression simply wasn't working.  Nia led me to realize that it wasn't my academic brain that was in need of an education.  It was my whole self; my ignored Body, my decapitated head holding my disconnected Mind, my maelstrom of Emotions, my lost and neglected Spirit.  So I shed the skin of expectations that I would "earn" that piece of paper telling all that I had graduated from college.  I knew that the piece of paper I truly wanted was my Black Belt certificate.  The Belt System became my University.

I took language classes through the Belt System.  I learned to speak the language of Sensation.  Sensing my body became my practice for being in relationship with Nia, with my body, with the world.  Learn the Move:  I envision my headless body coming to life.  As I became more and more fluent in hearing and speaking / Receiving and Transmitting this language, I took a class in Methodology.  Trust became my method as I taught - and continue to teach -  myself to Trust those Sensations.   Move the Move:  I envision my enlivened body holding my head a few inches above my neck, bobble heading.  Method:  Receive Sensation, process in the head, sink back down to find where Trust resides in the body.  I ping pong up and down to reconnect.  I picture synapses firing and circuitry being rewired, seeing my body as an intricate system of rivers beginning to flow in beautifully choreographed patterns across and through my body, quenching once dry terrain.  I practice Sustaining.  I practice Increasing.  I condition my nervous system to reclaim my sensory self.  The chasm between head and body is fleshed out and in, the connection reintegrated.  With my body and mind as partners engaged in sensory-based communication, I am empowered to self-direct.  I Tweak.  I Tweak towards Pleasure.  And through this education of trusting my sensations and trusting myself to Tweak, I Energize the Move.

From this place of energetic empowerment and ability to self-direct, I look back at that piece of paper I once pursued academically.  I consider the medications required to get me through to the level of junior in college.  I see the choice to Step In to Nia's laboratory as my first embodied experiment.  My Nia path has been a succession of experiments:  Can I learn my first routine by following the scientific steps outlined?  Can I teach my first class?  Can I string a thread of connection class-to-class?  Can I Sustain the Focus?  Can I integrate the many layers and levels of tools I'm collecting as I move through the Belt System?  And the experiment that brings me full-circle back to my days of doctors' notes and Leaves of Absense:  Can I find my way without the medications?  Can I trust my body instead of the doctors' warnings that I am "one of those patients who needs to be on psychiatric medications for life?"  I set up the experiment weeks before Black Belt by slowly weaning myself off of the medications.  My Nia tools of body wisdom are my independent variables.  I analyze the data of how I feel in my BMES being.  When I sense stuck, depleted, dense energy in the instrument of my body, I move.  I breathe.  I shimmy.  I vibrate, I shake, I pound, I breathe some more, I pulse, I yell, I stretch, I slither, I slide, I sweat.  These are my qualitative variables.  I synch what I am feeling with how I choose to move.  "The only way out is through."  I move through.  This is my laboratory, this is my experiment.  With agility, I work with the fluency of sensation I've developed over the years, trusting that my body knows how to move the energy that once festered into depression and anxiety through my BMES and to clear the way for vibrant health.  Over the 4 years of this experiment's run, I replicate the results over and over again.  Yes!  This is what "body literacy" feels like.  I can read my body and craft my body's movements towards desired results.  Yes!  This is what "health literacy" feels like.  I gain strength through repetition of coming from a place of empowerment to step up into responsibility for my own body and my own health.  YES!  This is what life literacy feels like, as I navigate through the energetic tools of the chakra system to craft who I am, where I go, and how I choose to imprint the world.

As a teacher of Nia's practice of sensing our bodies and method of trusting sensations of sensory-based communication and education, I aspire to professor in Nia's University.  Nia is my personal, applied, practical Science.  Now I Am a Sensation Scientist, pursuing my Ph.D. in Pleasure!