(PART III) APPLICATION OF THE ELEMENTALS IN PERFORMANCE: BECOMING CONSCIOUS OF THE ELEMENTALS IN THE BODY
Becoming Conscious of the Elementals in the Body
The most obvious point of connection with the Earth element is your physical body. After all, you aren’t just a mind standing on stage in a room of minds! The Earth element represents the nature of structure, and can be used to adjust imbalances that may be present within the body. Earth in many respects is created by the interactions of Air, Water, and Fire in a given Space. It absorbs the relative heat of Fire from the nervous system, and contains the Water element (the blood in the body). These elements are sustained and directed through the body by Air from the breath. The Earth element (the body on the Physical plane) provides the various channels and avenues for Air, Water, and Fire to move through the body. Physical awareness can help you to become more grounded in all of the Elementals, particularly in high stress situations. This awareness can be a great way to counter balance a number of issues that performers experience. One of the primary ailments that performers have is nervousness. Nervousness can be counter balanced by an awareness of how the elements are grounding within your body, and then taking the time to relax them. First and foremost, you must become aware of your spine. Spinal awareness immediately pulls you into the body for a variety of reasons. Your entire nervous system is wired through your spine to connect all the various actions of the body. Spinal awareness can nearly immediately bring a sensation of relaxation to the mind and body. You can achieve this through a simple visualization such as taking a breath, and imagining a white light filling the tube of your spine like a straw. Upon exhalation, imagine the nervousness as a black smoke leaving your body, as if you have just filtered out the toxicity. Once you are centered in your spine, begin to move downward through the body, passing through the ribs, and then down into the bowl of the hips. From there, extend your awareness through your legs, and into your feet, extending out through the tips of the toes. Inhale back up through the body from the toes to the neck, and then extend out through the arms to the hands and fingertips. This simple exercise can be done in a matter of 10-30 seconds (2-3 breaths). One of the primary benefits is that it will get you out of your head, and will help you to circulate energy through your body.
Another component of nervousness is that the blood vibrates erratically, causing discomfort. This is an imbalance between your Fire Element (nervous system) and your Water Element (blood). Become aware that the Fire element is the nervous system, operating in the body via the brain and spine. Calm the Fire by directing the breath through the spine as before. The primary source of your Water element is the blood. Water is receptive and connective in nature, thus if your thought process is out of balance it will immediately effect the state of the vibration of your blood. Use the breath as a means of relaxing the blood. As you inhale, feel the air moving through the blood and clearing out the nervousness. Exhale out the erratic feeling that has been caused. Again, see the inhalation as being a pure white light cleansing the impurities, and then exhale the black residue that has been pulled out. This is often related closely to tension in the Solar plexus, particularly involving secretion of the Adrenal gland (fight or flight instinct). This causes the breath to become shallow, starting and stopping at the throat. Breathing into the spine as before will help move the breath deeper into the body. Once the nervous system (Fire) is calmed and the blood (water) is in balance, you can then feel the space around you open up, rather than being contracted, and completely terrified in your thought stream. This relaxation will then help you to engage the music and the audience more thoroughly. It will allow you to enter into the play of the Elements on a deeper level, and give your performance a deeper attention through which you can move the collective consciousness throughout the night.
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