Marion Rosen In Her Own Words
by Marion Rosen, February 15, 1989
Often I ask myself: What is it in our work that touches people, that makes it different from other ways of working with a human being? Yesterday I was talking to a very sophisticated group of people. From their initial position of reserved friendliness, I could see in their faces a glow starting - to me it looked like their eyes were precious stones starting to glow and the glow was slowly spreading over their whole body. They were becoming beautiful. Lines in their faces were disappearing, backs and shoulders straightening, and from their sharing, I found they had gotten what it was that I was trying to talk to them about. What was it that came out of me that they understood? Not only that, but something touched them in a way that transformed the way they were. They showed themselves to me - and to each other. By the time we were supposed to leave, everyone was engaged in a lively discussion with someone else, people not wanting to let go of the moment and not wanting to let go of each other.
The topic of the talk was: Give hints to psychiatrists and psychologists what to do about their professional hazards of back and neck pains.
What I then talked about was what brought about the occurrence of these pains: to trace what happened in their lives that set up the condition of holding in their musculature, their unconsciousness about what happened and the condition of stiffness and pain that resulted from this unconscious action.
The process, as I see it, is as follows: In the process of growing up, there are many occurrences in our lives that are painful and we have a hard time to handle them. If our environment is understanding and accepting (parents, teachers, friends, relatives) we can show our pain, talk about it, cry, get angry, get fearful, whatever it is we are feeling and as we put out (bring forth) what is going on with us, our pains diminish, we do not have to hold them back, put into our unconscious. In our language, the incident is handled.
If the friendly understanding environment is not forthcoming, we have to suppress all we are feeling: our sadness, anger, fear, and often with it our love. We do it and do it, until we forget what happened and we think we are the person that appears suppressing all their feelings.
When you work on people, they remind me of flowers that have not yet gotten into bloom. A flower bush looks very different before the first buds appear. So it is in the body that is closed and does not reveal anything of its life and beauty. The tension presents a picture of lifelessness and as we put our hands on those lifeless parts the body slowly starts to open. Like the bud that opens into a blossom of color and beauty, the human being emerges from the nondescript mass, before us. As the breath starts moving through the body, it's outlines change into something alive, it's opening has the same effect as the flowering bud. The person becomes the beautiful being that was hidden away under a stern outside. This process never fails to touch me, the body worker, in my deepest being, so I open up towards the being under my hands. The contact thus created is one of deepest connection and trust and seems to open our channels of love on both sides. That is, I believe, the reason why we often do not know afterwards who was the one that gave the treatment and who received it.
You cannot hurry a flowering bud to open to its full bloom. It opens when it is ready to open. The same with our treatments. We may suspect the beautiful being under our hands, but all we can do is patiently wait while we put our hands on the held muscles, on the often lifeless form before us. Our joy is to witness this process, slowly bring it into the awareness of the person we are working with. What we see first may be pain, sadness, fear and anger and as they are allowed to be without judgment they give way to all the other emotions that had been buried along with them.