Ignition in the cranial system is a deep topic and will require more than one post. And if I ramble, please forgive me as I am also going to first reflect on our industry or maybe our education system in general, especially in the USA. Although I have been practicing cranial for years, the amount of hours sitting and listening to the systems of many clients is dwarfed by those giants that came before me like Doctors, Fulford, Becker, Mangoun, Jealous and others. Its humbling! Our education system and many of our massage schools as well, encourages mediocrity. Sorry if that stings, I am not singling out anyone. Just look at the claims of graduating students who offer multiple disciplines on their business cards as soon as they graduate! Now, I know that in order to keep a licensure that isn’t supported by the ruling medical system, one is supposed to do continuing education in order to be considered legitimate. Unfortunately, that is often the driving factor, and not the actual knowledge of the work itself! I know this to be a fact, because I receive lots of emails through our website. Often times they will not buy the dvds we offer because they can’t get their CEU’s in time. There is the assumption that an online course should be quick and easy. And there in lies my entire point. When I was studying at the Rolf Institute, many of my teachers were practicing cranial sacral therapy as well and visceral work in addition to the foundational work taught by Dr. Rolf. When I asked why those disciplines were not being taught alongside Dr. Rolf’s work, the answer (which didn’t make much sense at the time) was get a Rolfer’s hands for 5 years and then move on. I totally get it now after 30 years of practice. It pays to play in “the fields of a discipline” for awhile before adding yet another.
Recently, I made a decision to no longer teach 4 day cranial classes and returned to a longer format. I found that there was no point in sharing something at such a superficial level and then moving on. I recently discovered that my students were exploring the concept of ignition less then a month after I taught them the initial course of the vault holds. They were able to do that because they had my dvd course which was a compilation of my two year study and could jump around using it and two books I recommended. I don’t think there is anything sacrilegious about it, but in my two year training at Karuna Institute we weren’t introduced to the concept of Ignition until almost the end of the training because of the complexity of it, and the need to have been practicing the work for some time. I remember Dr. Jealous describing his journey with it after over two decades of practice! And here my “students” were discussing it after a month! But, here is the kicker, less than a few months later they were on to “studying” yet another discipline like a butterfly seeking nectar from another flower. I was told Dr. Becker did 65,000 sessions of craniosacral therapy in 55 years. How can one claim to be doing a discipline when one does so many others. I think it is legitimate to call yourself therapist/healer but, I am a bit perplexed by those butterflies flying from flower to flower. I have realized that all the disciplines that are practiced under a massage canopy are as valuable as each other. There isn’t one that has more value. There is only the journey and the depth of knowledge that comes with time. I think there are musicians that have shown their ability to be multi-talented with various instruments, like Prince. But, ultimately Prince shined as guitarist and the majority of his time I am sure he spent learning that pathway.
Now that I have that off my chest, let’s discuss a bit about the ignition system in this article and go into more depth in another one. Ignition in my understanding is the spark of consciousness and perception. There is a portal that one passes through to be able to ascertain the different aspects of the system and that takes time. It requires lots of it sitting on your ass like a sphinx waiting for the system to tell you its story. Ultimately the proof is in the pudding, and you will begin to have a relationship with the system after years of practice, not days or weeks. Ignition can be likened to the fire of life that heats, bakes and moves the fluids in our system. It has been called many things: Presence, The Divine Ordering Principle, The Breath of Life. It is what gives everything form, it is the great transmitter, the Spark. How does one come into relationship with this Divine Spark? I would say the first step is to sync yourself with the motion of the body you are listening to, by syncing with Primary Respiration. This concept alone is enough for the beginning student, or for that matter one who is somewhat advanced in their training. In learning this work all of us have been taught not to follow the first wave or motion that comes into you hands. Give it some time, there is no endgame here and your finished, close your book, get an A and go to the head of the class! Take you time and have no attachments to how that particular session is going to unfold. FEEL! Relax and breath as you listen to the entire field and the movement that starts from outside of the body. Its a deeper breathing. Your observation will change as you settle in and begin to know that the force of Ignition starts outside of the body. What does the system feel like, earn your ability to distinguish vitality and the scope of the fluid drive. All the living processes are ignited by this Spark with creates a movement throughout the fluids. Its the Mysterium that we come into relationship with while we discover fulcrums and lesions and observe as this force melts them and rebalances the system, transmuting it into a higher state of well-being. Coming into relationship with this Primary Spark begins not only to changes the system we are palpating, but the practitioner as the witness to the Divine as it unfolds and takes form. More to follow next week.