Present from the top of the world
land. Tibet is the cradle of mysticism and supernatural things in the eyes of many. Perhaps it remained the guardian of ancient knowledge because of its remote, inaccessible location. Civilization and all its dark aspects always struggled to get here. People live in harmony with Nature and themselves. This wondrous land has a great gift for the stressed-out, running man of modern world. This present is the Prananadi® Massage. What can we know about this harmless, gentle and pleasant method? There are written scripts from 2,700 B.C. mentioning the blissful effects of the method. This ancient massage technique has been guarded in monasteries and can still be learnt at these holy shrines. If someone wishes to teach this massage technique,they have to pass strict tests before gaining permission to teach.
extend our lifespan with decades but it can`t help with the inflexibility of our body and the numbness of our muscles. It is an everlasting truth that, as the years pass, we become wiser. We have all right to ask, what is wisdom worth if our thoughts are barred within an achy body, and our life experience can`t be put into practice as all moves cause agony? Massage helps to keep our body fit instead of becoming a jail on our spiritual path. In our busy world, we forgot to listen to each other and ourselves. Touch, the very basic element of communication, disappeared. If someone decides to go down this path of illness prevention and healing they will be surprised to see the positive aspects that appear whilst under the therapy. It is a very pleasant experience when the healing is started off by another human being`s touch. As we know, most of our internal problems and illnesses are caused by our mind. The method builds a bridge in the communication between the mind and the body. It takes effect on a mental level as well, which starts the recovery in our illnesses caused by our mind.
There are only a few handfuls of people who don`t know the meaning of stress. This state of mind is one of our key motivations in Life. Without this, we wouldn`t feel the urge to reach our personal goals. However, if this mental state turns overwhelming, it will make our life difficult. It can cause insomnia, mental disorders, behavioral issues and internal illnesses. Massage can loosen this long-lasting tension significantly. One of the main attributes of our age is a sedentary lifestyle, which puts a lot of pressure on our muscular and skeletal system. Regular massag
e helps our muscles to retain their optimal condition and flexibility. By doing so our skeletal system remains strong and resistant. Sadly one of the negative consequences of our civilized life is building up more and more toxins in our body by eating lots of contributory materials. Massage helps to cleanse these from our systems. It activates the lymphatic system and stabilizes the blood circulation.
With all these positive effects, the healing process starts in the patient’s body without being tied to any limitations or restrictions.
An hour spent in a soothing, pleasant atmosphere will fill us up with energies and regenerates us just as much as if we’d spent days resting. One of the advantages of the method is that it can work well together with other Eastern healing techniques (i.e. acupuncture, acupressure, etc.). We have to underline that receiving massage regularly from early on can prevent serious health issues, illnesses. We have the key in our hands to our well-being; we are the ones responsible for the wholeness of our life. This massage technique can be learned from trained massage therapists so we can bring the blessing of healing and care to others through our touch. Let’s use this ancient present of Tibet so our life will not only last longer but be healthier and more meaningful than our predecessors.
Everyone needs to chill out and break free of time’s grasp. Listening to music, watching the clouds pass by on the sky, collecting stones and seashells on the seashore – all help our mind to relax, to retain the feeling of being whole in the innocence of the moment. As a child we climb trees and run around with bare feet, we are much m
ore settled and in alignment with ourselves. But as we grow we spend more time with our thoughts. It’s time to regain balance and return to our body by re-discovering the gentle art of touch. It is a universal language with which we can heal, soothe and remove pain and release stress – but first and foremost, we can express that we care. Massage is like a meadow in the middle of the forest, it gives us the extra time we can use to relax and change ourselves.
With the help of massage, we can counter-balance the relentless stress brought by our normal and household work. More than enough people live their life with getting already used to pain and bad posture and only notice how tense their muscles are and how much energy they regain when giving or receiving a massage. The massage can prove to be a journey of self-learning showing what it feels like to relax and to be in harmony with ourselves, how to experience the joy of the body breathing and moving freely.
Massage once and today
Various forms of massage or lay-on-hand healing have been used for healing and easing pain infections over the millennia. Doctors of Ancient Greece and Rome used massage as a main tool for these activities. Hippocrates, ‘father of medicine’ wrote in the 5th century BC: ‘A doctor has to be skilled in various arts of healing but first of all, in rubbing, as it can put a loose tendon back to its place or loosen a tense ligament.’ Pliny, the well-known Roman natural healer received regular massage for his asthma; Julius Caesar – who had epilepsy – was pinched from top to bottom daily to ease his torturous headaches. After the fall of Rome, when medicine evolved only slowly In Europe, the Arabs had to pick up the role of studying and improving the classic teachings in the 6th century A.D. Avicenna, an Arabic philosopher and doctor in the 11th century wrote in his grand masterpiece ‘Canon’: “…the aim of massage is to cleanse the toxins building up in the tired muscles due to the lack of movement. “ Pleasures of the body were despised in Middle Age Europe so the massage was written about rarely. However, massage was revived in the 16th century, mainly due to the work of the French doctor Ambroise Paré. Later in the 19th century, the Swede Per Henrik Ling developed the massage technique we know now as Swedish massage and what turns out to be none other than a combination of the Chinese, Egyptian, Greek and Roman training and anatomical practice. For the first time, in 1813 the University of Stockholm started to teach massage, and from this point on it was widely used in various institutes and spas throughout the continent. Nowadays massage has regained its well-deserved reputation for its therapeutic accomplishments and it becomes more and more popular with both specialists and members of the wider public.
The tradition of massage has always been valued more highly in the East than in the West, and it was practiced continuously since ancient times. The different approach of the East and the West to massage may be the result of the industrial revolution, unfolding in the West 250 years ago. Due to the new scientific approach, all the older theories, which looked at the body, mind and soul as a whole were labeled as non-scientific, and in time the human body was handled as a complex machine which could only be repaired and treated by highly qualified experts, doctors. This scientific approach only hit the East recently, but in the poor countryside, the people still follow their natural instinct of using the ancient ‘rubbing methods to rub themselves healthy’, placing their trust in the ‘barefooted’ doctors immense knowledge of the fields of Eastern medicine, resetting dislocations and using other hand techniques.
The Japanese shiatsu system is based on such traditional massage techniques and as it became more and more popular, it merged with classic acupuncture and the Western bone setting techniques that have appeared just recently in Japan. The origins of reflexology are unknown – perhaps it can be traced back to the ancient Eastern art of putting pressure on certain parts of the body. However it may be, it is certain that it was already known in Ancient Egypt as it appears in the archaeological record, on the wall paintings of a tomb of a doctor.
The language of touch
The first thing evolving from our senses is the sense of touch. As a baby, it is vital for us to sense and discover the world through touch and we also need the loving touch of our parents to grow. As long as our need for contact is fulfilled by being touched we will grow in a healthy way, but if we are hindered in any way it can affect us detrimentally. The hug and touch received as a baby helps us to build up a healthy picture from within ourselves, it nurtures the feeling of being loved and accepted. Two decades ago the American psychologist S.M. Jourard proved that the frequency of being touched directly affects our sense of self-belief.
Experiments performed on mammals prove how important it is to get in touch with the loving, caring mother and vice versa, how harmful the lack of touch can prove physically and mentally. In our society anyone banned from interacting with other human beings as a punishment is sentenced to suffer the worst kind of prison. If we are stopped from touching others or from being touched we may feel lonely and depressed easily. A recent American medical study revealed that the patients who were hindered in touching with their skin in any way suffered from immense solitude, missing the warmth of human touch. Touch is the instinctive language of showing our emotions, to share the feeling of love and gratitude with others and to let them know that we appreciate their presence. We tell the child who hurt herself, ‘I will give it a massage to ease the pain’; we touch the head and aching tummy of a child with a fever.
Emotional pain also drives us to react instantly. We reassure the suffering person of our compassion and understanding with hugging and caressing. If we are alone and it hurts we get smaller and we wrap ourselves around with our own hands, we drop our tired face in our palms and we massage our aching limbs unconsciously. But in spite of hugging each other to express friendship, love or happiness don’t we constantly repress our instinct to touch that is meant to ease the pain, sorrow or refer to sexual interest just because we are afraid of sharing our emotions via touch (even though it would soothe and bring healing)?
Care and sensitivity, a little time, energy and capable hands – it is all that is needed to practice massage. But regardless of the method of therapy, we choose to learn there are certain aspects to keep in mind. The success of all therapies lies in our state of mind and behavior with the client. The therapist should handle each session as a new chance of gathering experience and to practice honest care, attention and respect. Before beginning the treatment one should always discuss with the client the nature of the condition and base our recommendation upon that. One should encourage the client to stop the session if s/he would feel discomfort if the pressure is too weak or too strong. But one should not encourage further conversation during the session – this brings only distraction from the communication with touch. One should never treat anyone if feeling angry or upset, as this is likely to affect the client.
Giving and receiving
Massage is a two-fold way of touch and response, a shared energy exchange. The hand – giving and receiving, and the skin, are all tools of communication. We explore the uniqueness of the client being touched with our hands, whilst the client picks up the benefit of touch, caring tenderness and movements through the skin. The words ’give’ and ’receive’ can be deceiving as any form of touch therapy is based upon shared giving. In order to receive the healing benefit of touch both participants need to be aware of their roles, both need to give and stay open-minded. The one receiving needs to trust the giver, and the giver needs to stay sharp for the needs of the receiver. On the highest possible level, the massage turns into a form of meditation where both participants share the moment and focus on the contact between them. The method below will help us to maintain focus and prevents us from giving mechanical massages.
If you are getting a massage, to benefit the most from the massage take the active part in the healing process by listening to the touch of your practitioner and stay focussed. Whenever sitting or lying down, try to feel calm. Close your eyes, listen to your breathing and the parts of the body that move with this. Try to release your worries and problems. When you feel the hand of your practitioner, allow yourself to feel the experience and focus on the touch. Let the massage therapist lift your limbs with ease and try not to actively help with this. Point it out if a stroke or a touch gave a good sensation or if you feel the pressure is too strong. Otherwise, try not to engage in conversation.
In a few words about massage
Massage is the connection via touch – the connection between the hand and the body, head or any other limbs. At the same time, the massage does not only affect the skin but gets deeper into the bones and muscles, as the caring, thorough massage fills the whole body and soul. To distinguish it from other massage therapies the one we practice is also called holistic or intuitive massage. Holistic massage treats the individual as a whole – not just the body, and its movements are generally slower and more contemplative. In the case of holistic massage, the attitude of both the massage therapist and the client is crucial from the point of efficiency. The client’s ’job’ is to relax but not to get carried away by the thoughts and listen to the touch of the massage therapist. The therapist also needs to be focussed and to maintain an open mind. The client should feel the flow of the massage while the stroking moves pass rhythmically from one body to the other.
As a beginner please do not feel overwhelmed by the vast knowledge you have yet to learn; by practicing just one step at a time you will soon realize that from the moment your hands work without any tension, the strokes will come naturally by themselves. With experience gained new moves can be introduced and unique techniques can be developed if the body under your hands wishes so. Continuity can be regarded as the ABC from which you can create your own language depending on the clients’ needs. While giving the massage please ask your client which strokes felt good, but don’t talk otherwise as this will likely distract your attention from your hand movements. The slower and more flowing your moves are the better your client will feel. While learning the massage techniques have some massage yourself to gain experience with various speeds and pressure strengths. A good massage influences the client on all levels.
From the body’s aspect, the greatest benefit of massage comes from the relaxation and loosening of the muscles, but it also helps the flow of blood, increases the level of hemoglobin, stimulates the lymphatic circulation and extends the building blocks of the connective tissue. Holistic massage affects the energy centers, the chakras of the body as well. Mentally it relieves stress and depression and it helps us to be more aware of the wholeness of our body, including the parts we can and we can’t touch. Once we find out where the energy gets blocked we can start the integration of the body and establish a more positive image of the self, allowing us to take the control of our happiness and health. Professional massage brings a feeling of comfort, trust and happiness. It also releases a lot of energy that was tied down by stress before; it can change bad habits, facial expression and posture.
A vital element of the massage is its’ emotional potential.
The extent of spiritual benefit gained from massage is hard to comprehend as it is something that at its core cannot be measured or defined. It is about the core, the ‘life force’, the whole that is more than a sum of the parts. There is one thing for certain with regards to holistic massage: whilst performing it both the therapist and the client get into a high level of consciousness, into the state of ‘being in the moment’ that is similar to meditation. Holistic massage is a complex treatment combining energetic, meridian, lymphatic, fat-burning, cleansing and refreshing elements. A full body massage includes all of these.
I hope I succeeded in raising your curiosity by briefly introducing this massage method. I wish good health to all who may read this and to all who do not.