chapter  5
HEAD, HEART AND HARA The dynamic morphology of the body
Pages 13

Following the account in the last two chapters of embryonic and early post-natal development, we can begin to look at how the embryological history is expressed in the form of the adult body. In this chapter the emphasis is therefore on the understanding of some of the aspects of the design of the body and the relationship between the embryological layers and the regional development of the body. We move from formative processes to structures; from the history of life in the womb to the morphology of the body.The three embryonic realms become differentiated into three primary regions of the body. All the main ectodermal organs, except the skin, are concentrated inside the head: the eyes, the ears, the nose, the tongue, the brain. The organising centre for the major muscles of the body and for the bony structure of the skeleton is the spine, with its extensions into the arms and legs and head - this latter’s external structure can also be used as a fifth limb, as in the yoga head-stand or in the descent down the birth canal. The spine and these limbs are the main executive organs of the mesoderm. The internal organs of the trunk, the lungs and the abdominal organs, can be thought of as the main reservoir of energy from the endoderm.We can look at the morphology of the body in terms of the way these three regions of the head, spine and gut are linked together.1 The three major junctions in the body link the three regions. The head is joined to the spine at the base of the neck.

If the neck is tensed the flow of connection between the ectoderm and the mesoderm is interrupted. Thinking and action become dissociated. If more energy is trapped above the neck block than below, we have a tendency to be over­identified with thinking at the expense of movement. In extremis, this creates a compulsive or obsessional pattern of behaviour. The obsessional person spends an inordinate amount of time planning activities but the free energy for moving himself into activity is tied up in the head. The manner of thinking becomes thought-blocking. The loosen­ing of neck tension typically allows activity to flow down the spine as a flow of expressive movement. Many headaches are created by neck tension, and may be relieved as the energy redistributes following the flow into expressive movement.If the energy is trapped below the neck block, there may be a pattern of over-activity with a lack of forethought; a typically impulsive pattern of movement. The body may be over­charged and the head under-charged. The person is in flight from thought. The loosening of neck tension allows energy to flow up the body to the face, the eyes, the voice and the brain, bringing about more possibilities of reflection and communica­tion.The junction between the head and the gut is in the throat. Here the ectodermal region of the head joins the endodermal region of the gut. Thinking and feeling are integrated through the expressive function of the voice. If the voice is mechanical, language remains explanatory. Explanation means to flatten out. Head-talk is cut off from feeling. Exploration means to flow out: exploratory language integrates thinking and feeling.When a child learns to swallow feelings, the throat block acts to keep feelings down. The emotional energy gets trapped in the trunk and has no outlet to the face. Such a person feels the pressure of strong emotions but feels he will lose face if he shows them. The face remains impassive - feelingless in contrast to the emotional pressure within. The opposite pattern is where much emotion is expressed through the face