Have you ever had a feeling of being stuck? I’ve had a few weeks where I have experienced more ‘stuckness’ than I usually do. It’s almost like it crept up on me and then the next thing I knew I felt stuck in many ways. It’s not pleasant and this feeling of inertia can take many forms including:
- Emotional – finding it hard to feel different and shift moods
- Mental – ruminating and running repetitive thought patterns
- Spiritual – a sense of isolation and disconnection from the world around
- Physical – extreme tension and lack of movement at a macro or micro level.
It’s interesting how in these contexts, to be stuck, to not be able to move has negative connotations. If we consider the Huna perspective, a fundamental assumption is that movement is a constant factor and that movement is important and natural to our state of being and that of the world around us. So let’s briefly explore this.
Movement for health
Movement is vital to healthy living. Our physical bodies are designed to move. The Hawaiian word for health and well-being is ola and it is also the word for life. Among other definitions are ‘living,’ ‘to heal’, ‘survive,’ and ‘thrive,’ all of which have connotations of movement as does life itself.
In contrast, the Hawaiian word for illness is ma’i’. This translates to a ‘state of tension’. In its wonderful simplicity, Huna posits that tension that can cause stuckness is equated with illness. Tension interferes with health, and this can be at a physical, emotional, mental or spiritual level or a combination of all four. Therefore, an aim of healing is to reduce tension and create movement and flow in whatever way is appropriate for any particular situation.
If we take the physical level as an example, physical healing techniques are concerned with creating movement. Body work including massage has the function of stimulating movement in the body and releasing physical blocks. Pikopiko or ‘travelling breath’ is a breath-based technique for well-being and centering and involves movement of focus.
Of course, there are more ways to create movement than just physically. Mentally there are techniques to provoke movement in our own or others’ thinking. We can also work at the level of dreams – both waking and sleeping, to change symbols to shift stuck states. We can work at a spiritual level to create movement by connecting to the world around us.
Everything is moving
To some degree everything is moving. In Huna, we consider that everything is aware, alive and responsive. This includes things that many do not see as alive and moving, for example rocks and sheets of metal. In modern terms a rock, like anything else, is comprised of atoms and electrons all of which are constantly in a state of flux. Using Huna techniques such as grokking, we can learn to slow down and alter our perception to notice the movement in things in the word around us.
Movement is a natural part of life
Energy is movement and we are energy. Just as a wave is in a perpetual state of ebb and flow (hu and na) so it is with our lives. Everything naturally moves and that movement is towards harmony. This involves a natural tension and release. When that process is blocked, for example, when there is too much tension and not enough release, things can become stuck and illness can result. Taken to the extreme, without any movement life disappears.
So, the first stage of overcoming stuckness is awareness – to notice you are stuck. Then it is a case of being flexible and discovering how you can create some movement, physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually. Even if at first it is just a tiny bit of movement, this can be enough to build on and get you back into the adventure – into riding the wave of life – just as it is meant to be.
Pete Dalton ©2021. This article first appeared on Aloha International