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Tracy Courtney


Everywhere we look we are bombarded with words & phrases that refer to feeling & sensing. The words feeling & sensing have become synonymous with the word emotion. We have come to perceive these as being related & having the same meanings, but do they? There are many common phrases that point to this, such as "I'm feeling emotional", but do we really feel emotional? Where does this feeling arise? When we feel emotional, do we feel it in our hand, our finger or our foot? Likewise, when we feel pain in the body, is this also feeling emotional? What labels can we give this emotion in relation to the pain being experienced in the body? When we feel the wind on our face, what emotion is this?

Emotions are a function of the mind, directly connected to the mind & disconnected from the body. This is the reason the emotions settle down when the mind quiets down, it's an obvious & repeatable byproduct. This is why Parameters is so effective, because we go directly to quieting the mind, which will automatically quiet the emotions & this in turn will automatically quiet the physical agitation that is directly linked to the mind. This is what I refer to as working from the inside-out, as opposed to working through the body to eventually reach the mind. This is also why I always say that all of the unwanted behaviour disappears all by itself, just like magic! We are so entrenched in functioning from the mind & mind triggered emotions, that we can't conceive of any other way of being. It seems so normal & natural to us that this is why we force our pets to contract their normally expanded awareness into a limited mindset, just like us. If it's good for us, then it must be good for everything else, right?

Quieting the mind, body & emotions are not enough. For those who have experience with meditation, what you will have found is that the mind & corresponding emotions will resurface eventually at full velocity & repeatedly because the mind is still running the show, from a more subtle angle. Emotions are created by the mind & they trigger habitual tendencies that result in irrational & reactionary events. How many of us have overreacted due to mental & emotional stimulation & had regrets for our words & actions? If we dissect these occurrences, there was no feeling, sensing or caring in these moments. The mind keeps us wrapped up in a swirling bubble of "I, me & mine". It always revolves around how WE feel, what WE think & what WE want, with no concern for others in these moments. The mind will tell us we're acting with good intentions in some cases, but later dissection will reveal a deeper truth.

We have come to believe that we are feeling & sensing the world around us, but we can't feel from the mind. We can feel through the senses of the body & this is in direct contrast or opposition to what we think we're feeling through the mind & emotions. Quieting the mind to create a domino effect of quieting the emotions & body is only the first step. This creates the relaxation & letting go which is necessary for optimal learning & retention, however we & our pets are still functioning from the mind space, although it's less turbulent for now. The awareness is still contracted & limited to the headspace & after relaxation is achieved, we must begin to expand the awareness back into the body & down to the feet.

I have come to understand that this is where fear responses will be triggered In animals & humans. Although it won't take long for the animals to adjust because they can recall experiencing through expanded awareness previously, it will be a new & frightening experience for humans because they have not functioned this way since early childhood & they can't remember what it was like. Because we have become to believe so intrinsically that we have always functioned through deep feeling & densing, we have no comparison of what it's really like to function, feel or sense through the body. 

This is brand new territory & we have all been conditioned to respond to the unknown through fear & avoidance. Does this sound familiar in relation to our pets? Using the example from the previous article, where there was a new sensation described through the body in regard to the presence of the hawk, this was a new physical sense of feeling & not an emotional one. Although the mind & emotions tried to link to the sensation & dictate how I should react to the feeling, I chose to ignore them & go with the flow of this moment. I may not fully understand what this was about yet, other than a new physical sensation that led to some interesting new insights, but in no way did I feel frightened or worried about it. The answers will come through introspection.

There are many, where if it were them in this situation, would have perceived the experience through a fearful emotional response. The habitual tendencies of the mind would have told them to be afraid because they had no context for this new experience & many would have vacated out of fear. Living in the mind tells us to run. hide, fear & react with violence to anything unknown. It triggers an emotional response as opposed to curiosity & exploration. How many of us would have made the decision that this particular area was bad? How many would have refused to return to the area? How many would return with smudge sticks, salt & any other number of gadgets in an attempt to ward off the negativity or evil that was associated to this strange, heavy feeling in the air?

Beginning to move our awareness into our body to truly feel & sense the world around us is brand new territory for most of us. It will inevitably carry many unknowns as we're learning to navigate what we're actually feeling for the first time & not what we think we're feeling. I have come to surmise that this is the true meaning of what spirituality calls "grounding" & Buddhist's call "mindfulness". It's about moving out of the imagination of the mind space & moving into the feeling & connectedness of the physical space. Functioning through the limited mind space creates a feeling of superiority which inevitably leads to conflict. It creates needless variability, complexity & forces us to move away from simplicity & harmony. Words are a product of the mind & we are exceptional in creating limitless complex words to describe simple, single meanings. We spend our lives quarreling over the complexity we have created over simple words. For those who have made the choice to step out of their limited boxes of belief & explore so much more that’s available to you, I will leave you with a question to ponder. Is gravity an unknown force that keeps us weighed down & prevents us from floating away, or is it possible that gravity is a result of the weight of the mind & emotional baggage we all carry, that keeps us weighed down?