“Gravity is the therapist”: A Contemplation on Adversity and Actualization

“Practitioners of Structural Integration do not feel themselves to be therapists. The gravitational field is the therapist. What we do is prepare the body to receive the support from the gravitational field which gives a greater sense of well-being.”

—Ida Rolf

Gravity seems antithetical to life: dry leaves fall and only dead fish go with the flow. How can gravity be the therapist at the same time? “Sweet are the uses of adversity,” as Shakespeare observed (As You Like It). Perhaps the dichotomy is not an opposition but a polarity. Without gravitational resistance to organize its structure against, the tree could not have grown in the first place. Similarly, there could be no current to speak of except for the pull of gravity so no manner to differentiate dead fishes from living ones. Stagnation rather than gravity, therefore, is the last enemy.

How can gravity be a therapist? Gravity is a fact; an element of macrocosmic reality. And in the final measure, all healing is the process of attuning our inner music to the Music of the Spheres (musica universalis). Gravity pulls our structure into alignment with physics just like it takes hold of the seed and nestles it to the earth while it establishes its foundations. The shoot emerges from the soil, the flower from the shoot. Physiology grows in the medium of physics. Psyche blooms from the soil of physiology. The self is the bee that alights on the blossom as its splendor and its crown.

 

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