04 November 2006


I am in chiropractic rehab therapy. Nine + weeks of exercises, daily adjustments, and 20 minutes of traction. It's to hopefully cure the fact that my upper spine is curved 145 degrees backwards of where it should be. A normal person's neck curves back, mine curves very nearly perfectly the other way. This causes neck and shoulder pain, headaches, carpal tunnel and hand and arm numbness, and nearly constant muscle tension across my back. It's uncomfortable and annoying, and thankfully, responding well to treatment. The exercises are, frankly, severely boring. They take around 15 minutes, every single appointment. So that's a lot of time to let your mind wander. Yesterday, my mind drifted to an exercise that I learned, of all places, at an improv workshop at the Northern California Renaissance Faire. The exercise was called Commonality. You'd stand in the center of a group of people. 10 or 15 of them. And find something in common with each one of them. Maybe you're both women. Maybe you both have blonde hair. You're both performers, you're both in this class. You're both interested in living history. You're both having trouble with this exercise. At first, it's really, really tough. You know nothing of these people. Nothing at all. Not even their names. But as you practice, as you work through the group, it is astonishing how much you have in common with a group of fairly randomly selected strangers. So that's what I did while doing my exercises. Commonality with these people. What do I have that's like you? Where's our common ground? If we were all to start talking, what would I say to you to break the ice? I'm reading a book about near death experiences (NDEs). Strange, I know, but it's written by, of all people, the man who is our boat broker, and I'm gaining all kinds of insight into him, and into his operating style. But anyway, one of the things he says in this book about NDEs, is that across all cultures and across all time, people who have them come back with an unshakeable faith in the unity, the oneness, the commonality, of all creation. It's a small exercise, really, in the face of the grandness of all creation, to muse about what the 10 or so other patients in the chiropractor's office might have in common with me. But wonderful, in its grounding. Give it a try.


At 11/04/2006 11:11:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey there, A cousin, had a near death experience after being thrown from a horse. She was fine, but it's pretty fascinating. Having lost a dear friend to a heart attack at 42, hearing what my cousin had to say has been a huge comfort to me. I like knowing that she was surrounded by love and light and welcomed on the other side. Well anyway, you and I have many things in common, but mostly I just like you. Have a great day. love, v


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