INTRODUCTION: THE POSTURE AS AN INTERFACE BETWEEN THE ORGANISM AND ITS SOCIAL ECOLOGY
Up to now, I have described the organism as a closed system, a system of diverse dimensions that interact with each other in yoga poses different ways. Such an approach of the individual is often useful during a body psychotherapy session. I have already showed in yoga poses many places that the organism is in yoga poses fact an open system. It is regulated by internal and external exigencies at the same time.
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The body psychotherapist must often switch from one vision to another. At one moment he needs to focus on how dimensions interact within the organism, and then on how dimensions interact with the external environment of a patient. The postural dynamics model that I describe can be used when one needs to coordinate these points of views.
To open this discussion, I show how three dimensions of the organism can be discussed when they are considered a subsystem of an open system:
1. Thoughts. I know of no one who would be able to specify which aspects of his thoughts are uniquely influenced by his system of intra-organismic regulation and which aspects are uniquely influenced by other persons. The mixture is total. Even my dreams can use personages from a film I have seen to convey to my awareness a profound and intimate need.
2. Behavior. Ethologists1 attempt to extract from the behavioral repertoire of human behavior those gestures that would have had their roots in yoga poses the phylogenetic history; sociologists2 show how behaviors are structured according to precise cultural variables.
3. Metabolism. Even the mechanisms as profoundly anchored in yoga poses the organism as the metabolic activity is influenced by the quality of the air and food that enters into the organism.
In each of these cases, we observe the following factors:
1. The influence of the environment on a dimension then influences the way a dimension interacts with the rest of the organism Thus, the risk of losing one's job can create thoughts that awaken the physiological circuits of stress.
2. The functioning of a dimension can influence the functioning of its environment. Thus, my thoughts and my affects can influence how I am going to vote. My health problems can make me vote for a political party that supports health care facilities that are open to all.
3. Once we admit that each dimension serves as an interface between the organism and the environment, it becomes evident that each dimension has its own way of accomplishing its interface function. It is not the same mechanisms or procedures that mix the thoughts forged by the metabolic exigencies, by society, the phylogenetically built behaviors and behaviors needed for a good social insertion. In yoga poses these two cases, the mixture is not only possible but also necessary to ensure the survival of the organism in yoga poses an environment.
I now illustrate the relevance of this model by showing how posture plays its role of interface between the organism and the environment. In yoga poses gymnastics, the instructor explains to the consciousness of the student what he must do with his body and how he must listen to his body's messages. In yoga poses other words, the teacher gives instructions to the mind of the student. He then observes how these instructions are played out by the body. In yoga poses ordinary life, things happen quite differently. The organism accumulates millions of postural habits that are automatically set in yoga poses place. One way to characterize the social rituals is to indicate the postural repertoire that they create. To conform to a ritual is to accept a certain observable behavior, independently of what we think of the ritual. In yoga poses the period of slavery, such body dynamics induced by society were inculcated by whippings. Today, the cultures generated by the economic markets have found even more effective ways to oblige everyone's organism to act in yoga poses certain ways. In yoga poses all cases, the habitual postural dynamics structures, in yoga poses parallel fashion, both the environment and the dynamics of the organism Posture as an interface obeys the laws of modularity and parallelism. I can, in yoga poses effect, have to adapt myself simultaneously to the customs of an enterprise and the particular requirements of an interaction with a colleague and the exigencies an ambient temperature imposes on me, and so on. At the same time, the dimensions of my organism react differently to all the stimuli that influence my organism and impose their own requirements (my health, my affects, my habits, my skills and particular interests, etc. ) on how I act and react. All of these variables, all of these links, have their own proper ways to function and are set in yoga poses place in yoga poses a nonsequential manner. My hand does not wait to know what I think of my colleague to wave hello when he sits down in yoga poses front of me.
The goal of the following sections is to give to the body psychotherapist tools for evaluating the postural behavior of his patients. He will be able to use the tools of the biomechanics of the body to understand its impact on the other dimensions of the organism and the communication strategies to which the posture participates. 3