Updated: Feb 5, 2018
When facing new challenges, one can sometimes encounter a wall. This wall is not to be skirted or else we become 'walled' in by all the different challenges awaiting us.
January 27, 2018
Encouraged by a slogan on a yoga mat, I decided to "Keep Going" with the transformational breath and float therapy. I was invited to a third Breath class Friday evening and I was excited to get the call. "Of course," I said. The past breath class was somewhat troubling due to an intense cramping that left me wondering what the heck happened to my body. It was much different than the first experience. As the facilitator explained though, each time it will be different.
The past breath class was somewhat troubling due to an intense cramping that left me wondering what the heck happened to my body.
In my line of work, I've encountered cramping and its almost always due to a diver being dehydrated. The last encounter I had with this was during one of my first days as the new dive boat captain. After the first dive, a diver began to complain of being light headed and body numbness. Shortly after this, he had labored breathing, body pains and unable to stand. The crew put him onto emergency oxygen and I thankfully had all my divers up, so I was able to rush him in to meet paramedics.
New Dive Boat Captain..
After docking, I looked over the side of the boat at the diver being lifted onto a stretcher. His hands were cramped into a position I would later come to know as lobster hands. The paramedics were continuing with the oxygen and instructing him to take deep breaths to alleviate the cramps. Later that day, the diver stopped by snacking on an apple to let us know he was feeling much better. The hospital deemed it was stress and dehydration giving him an IV, a snack and sent him on his way.
During my second Breath class I encountered intense cramping, beginning with my hands transforming into these fabled lobster pinchers that become impossible to open. The tingling, numbness spread throughout my entire body. Not what I would call a good feeling and it caused more stress. I asked about it and they said its energy moving. The pinched hands will diminish over time. Okay! Either way, there was the diver that had that similar experience and so I thought maybe I too was dehydrated.
The day of the class, I did not stop drinking water for the entirety of the day. I drank liters of coconut water intermittently between. I ate well. I was certain I would prevent the cramping. But as it turns out, I was destined for more lobster activity.
Energy Migrations, Connectivity, Bliss..
The facilitator described the different phases of the Breath class and the first is a highly intensive movement of energy. This is when I get the cramping. My mind is unable to comprehend what is going on, but while my body is in this state, its evident something is taking place. If its surely not dehydration, then I would believe it to be something to the likes of energy migrations. The facilitator suggested I pound my fists or rabbit punch the air when I get stuck there, but for me its painful. The numbness is very strong and the entire body is unwilling to relinquish. It could be my mind unwilling to relinquish, so I have decided to not give up hope.
The next phase is a state of connectivity. From the energy release, pathways are opened and the higher self is then able to communicate directly with us. It's a back and forth of the mind and the higher self assuming control, but when the pathways are clear, a stream of messages can come in. Not always in a communicable form, but the body is also able to listen and I think sometimes it just downloads the information without our mind having to have the explanation of what's being done.
The last phase is that of bliss. It's beautiful, serene and comforting. It's your higher self saying, "Hey, look at you man! You ARE divine. You ARE perfect. You are ALIVE!"
This is where people seem to get a lot of colorful, tessellating patterns, star explosions and fractal imagery. Which I believe to be a simple, but effective method in which the Universe converses with its subjects. It's certainly attention getting and hard to forget. It's not easy to communicate the intensities and intricacies back to people, but I've seen different artists able to depict the visuals and there are trends between them.
I left the class feeling rather frustrated. It ended well. I made it through to all of the stages, but that cramping is so darn uncomfortable! I dont question motives much, but paying money to cause this state seems ridiculous. I tell myself there is work being done and its a matter of being new to it. As I shared my experience, other people in the room were mimicing the lobster hands sensation, confirming this was a to be expected sensation. I took advantage of scheduling a float while I was there and the following morning, there I was.. ready again to enter into the unknown!
Very quickly I slipped into suspended breathes where I would shudder and come back to my body.
Just like the Breath class, you really shouldn't come to the tank with any expectations of it occurring similar to a previous float. I like to record and remember these moments, but I feel they're only there to learn from and hang up with the other sets of tools. The main tool I have and continually use is the one that allows me to be open to new experiences. I feel I get the most out of adventures with that mindset.
The float went well. I was encountering heavy chatter for the first half, which I wasn't too upset about. I gave it its space and calmly said, "I did not come here to plan my day." Which seemed to make it grow quiet. I hopped out to rinse off my face and dry it again. Sort of like hitting a reset button. When I got back in I was much more relaxed after 45 minutes of battling the relentless, conscious mind. Very quickly I slipped into suspended breathes where I would shudder and come back to my body. It happened about 3 or 4 times rapidly. I knew I was in a good state to travel now. Feeling the dense, slimy solution, I felt it too pushing back against me. Alive and aware of my presence. I felt myself rising, as if floating atop a rapidly filling tide pool. I wondered if I would hit the top of the tank. I knew I wouldn't. I started to spin, which is always a neat sensation to have in the tank. I knew I couldn't spin, but time spent in a sensory reduction tank has the effect of overriding what the rational mind dictates.
Into the Heart Space..
And then, I was met with a new sensation. One I've heard of, but not encountered myself. The feeling of being vertical in the tank. I was no longer looking up, but forward. There was a set of stairs in front of me and I walked down them as if I was entering a basement right below where I had been floating.
It lead me into a chamber. I looked around in this new space. It was dark, warm. The walls were red with flesh, but it was juxtaposed with the likes of a rusty tool shed. There were out-dated tools hanging, like hand saws and big chains. It looked a bit too much like a horror movie, but this space was very personal to me. I came to the conclusion I was inside myself.
This chamber, was that of my heart. It wasn't being attended to. It's tools were worn out. I picked up a few tools and was unsure how to even use them, despite their simplicity. I looked around for awhile, touching all the things as I went. After familiarizing myself with the space, I returned up the stairs and came back into the confines of the float tank. The tank itself still feeling very much like the heart chamber I had just entered. I relished in the comfort and opportunity the tank provided. I didnt ask any questions, just floated admiring the experience. If I had asked for an experience, would I have ever gotten this? It's so important for me to just surrender and embrace whatever comes next. Keep going!