The Mind-Body Connection - It’s not what you think

Article abstract

Science has turned on its head our understanding of the mind-body connection. This article is about how to change how you function to be congruent with the science. It introduces a sample practice to illustrate the approach.

There are many interpretations of the mind-body connection. The most common thread is that the mind, in one form or another, is in control of or is superior to the body. How did we become convinced that the mind is the main driver in the mind-body relationship? In the seventeenth century, philosopher Rene Descartes proposed that the body is essentially a machine that is controlled by the conscious mind. The machine body subordinate to the superior mind became a convenient way to structure society and education as we entered the industrial age. In the nineteenth century, an education system was devised for the masses based on the factory-model classroom. It was expedient to separate academic studies from physical activities. Then seventy years ago science went one step further and claimed the brain functions like a computer. The computer mind, machine body philosophy is fully entrenched in society as evidenced by how we educate, our approach to exercise, how we practice medicine, how we do business, how we learn new skills and more. 

In the last decade science, with the advent of MRI technology, has turned on its head the computer mind over machine body belief. Neuroscience, in studying how the brain works, now knows it is a complex neurological organism that rewires itself as it learns and refines skills. The brain evolved to process all information it receives through the senses: what we hear, see, smell, taste, and touch. Every sense is activated by movement. But it isn’t any movement that matters because other scientific studies show that it’s the quality of our movements that lead to optimal function in any endeavor. It has also been shown that if movements become more primitive and less well organized, our thinking becomes limited and less creative.

Science has blown cartesian philosophy out of the water so now society must transition to become congruent with the science. We now know how the brain works thanks to science, but how de we actually make the transition? 

We must reconnect with the non-conscious learning we were born with. When we learn non-consciously, then lose functionality, it is impossible to re-learn it because we don’t know how we learned it. I have spent many years working with people to re-teach lost function. I don’t show them any particular skill because they learn how to integrate five essential elements into all movements. The elements include how we evolved to move in gravity according to physics and Newton’s 3rd law of motion. To get an idea of how the approach works try the following:

  1. Sit forward in a chair with your legs hip distance apart and your feet at a 90-degree angle to your knees. Drop your knees in toward one another,  ideally letting them touch. If they don't touch don't force it. Turn to look over your shoulder. Notice what mostly turns. Is it your neck, does anything below your shoulders turn. Is your pelvis involved? Does your entire torso turn together in one piece? Do you look down? Do you lean to one side? Do your belly muscles contract? Repeat a few times so that you can feel what you do. Pause.
  2. This time lengthen the back of the neck by tucking your chin slightly down toward your collar bone. Try to align the neck with the rest of the spine. Slowly start to turn your head to look to the left, keeping the chin down. As you turn do not let the legs fall left or right. Do not lift the chest. Each time turn just your head and feel what muscles to release in your neck and shoulders.
  3. This time turn just your head and pause a moment. Release muscles you feel and continue turning the head. Can you feel the neck starting to turn as your head reaches the limits of its axis? As you continue slowly turning with the chin tucked feel what to release in the belly, legs, chest, shoulders and arms. Imagine your spine is a linked chain, and as you look around yourself the chain turns link by link. Release all muscles you feel as you slowly repeat the movement many times.

To reconnect with the learning you naturally had as a young child you must reconnect with how it feels to move, respond appropriately to what you feel, understand how your structure is optimally organized for movement, and integrate five essential elements into all movements. Changing how you move to be congruent with the way your brain works will bring ease and effortlessness to your life spiritually, emotionally, physically, and intellectually.

About the author

J.B. Mason specializes in showing people how to function the way they evolved to eliminate pain, recover from injury, improve skills and more. Her approach reconnects the mind-body to be congruent with the new scientific understanding of brain function. The five essential elements mentioned in the article are fully explained in her book More Human Than Human. It is a practical guide to help anyone transition to better functionality. For more information go to http://movetoexcel.com

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Comment by Lisa Shaw on May 2, 2017 at 9:17am

Hi, JB. Thanks for this valuable posting.   As is, it doesn't meet the OmTimes publication guidelines, but it can be revised to do so.  The magazine doesn't publish either first person articles or articles that advertise a particular product of service.  However, in the required post-article brief bio, you can mention your book.  Also, we request a brief (50 words or so) abstract that summarizes the article to follow.  Please feel free to make the adjustments, and if you have any questions, feel free to ask. Thanks.

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