Page 29 - oct11_en

This is a SEO version of oct11_en. Click here to view full version

« Previous Page Table of Contents Next Page »
When we look at an emotional state from
the Taoist angle, the typical functional
characteristics can be associated with a
specifc emotional state attributed to one
of the fve elements or states of change.
The result is a better understanding of
the impact that an emotional state can
have on such a complex system like the
human being and how this affects our
skeletal muscles as well as our spine. 
Everyone experiences anxiety
in some form. Anxiety is
absolutely necessary for survival,
for humans as well as animals.
Maybe you think that anxiety
is the dark side of a life full of
pleasure. Maybe you think that
anxiety is a disorder of the mind
or an accident of creation which
has to be eliminated. However,
you have to accept that anxiety
is an emotion. 
According to Sigmund Freud (1856-
1939) anxiety originates when there is
a state of increased excitement which
leads to congestion and is the biological
background to the experience of anxiety.
Psychoanalysis tells us that each state of
panic grows out of the primary trauma of
birth. This explains anxiety as a learned
reaction in the sense of a classical
conditioning. The philosopher Martin
Heidegger (1889-1976) adds that the
whole range of anxiety reaches from the
cradle to the grave. 
A new view on the nature of anxiety was
confrmed by the experiments done by
Schachter &Singer. Drugs increasing
activity and drugs lessening activity
were administered to subjects. During
a period of waiting for the experiment
to begin (an experiment which never
really took place) the researchers staged
accidental incidents on subjects with
the aim of bringing them into a either
a cheerful or an angry mood. What they
tried to create was an emotional state
within the subjects but what actually
happened was something else. It turned
out that without increased activity
produced by pharmaceuticals as a
trigger, no emotions were aroused at all.
And when this happened the intensity
of emotion depended on the level of
activity created through medication.
This result can be interpreted in the
following way: that anxiety like any
other emotion is an activity without
specifc content. This means anxiety is
an abstract notion. Besides plain anxiety
there is the concept of fear which is
an innate reaction to awkward or life
threatening situations. Plain anxiety is
seen as the peak of psychic abstraction. 
Anxiety exists within the deepest layer
of our souls as a state of permanent
tension which keeps us alert against
everything and nothing. This is a basic
requirement in order to enable us to
survive in an environment of ‘eat or be
eaten’. Wherever you go, anxiety will
be with you. It will always be with you
as it is probably the most important
requirement to get anywhere at all.
Anxiety makes us cautious, sharpens
our senses and improves our intellect.
Our physical strengths are constantly
on alert because of anxiety and that
enables us to react either explosively or
to endure seemingly endless situations.
All in all anxiety is an essential
manifestation of Life Energy.  Dangerous
situation. But when this condition
is permanent or chronic it becomes
destructive and will lead to a state of
muscular torpor. 
The etymological meaning of anxiety
is narrowing or tightness. This is easily
comprehensible because when we
are anxious we become tense and our
throats narrow. Chinese Taoists, ancient
Egyptians and Native Americans all
say anxiety is a specifc manifestation
of Life energy on an emotional level. To
trace the cosmic principle underlying
anxiety we need to take a closer look at
its main characteristic. What is anxiety
doing? It is narrowing and increasing
tension. These are typical contracting
characteristics. When we apply this idea
to our skeletal muscles, we discover
that permanent anxiety creates a state
of permanent contraction within our
muscular system. This is an advantage
a long as we beneft from an increased
readiness to react to a 
How does an emotion become the origin
for serious spine problems? A constant
state of anxiety is a common source of
lower back problems. To tremble with
anxiety is similar to trembling with
cold. Both, the feeling of anxiety and
the sensation of cold, cause contraction
of the skeletal muscles. But there is a
difference between feeling cold and
anxiety Feeling cold is a very strong
and immediate stimulus whereas
the physical effects of anxiety are a
subtle build up over a longer period
time. The result is a loss of fexibility
which restricts our ability to move.
Restriction of movement, which often
goes unrecognized for a long time,
interrupts the Life energy fow along the
spine, resulting in the degeneration of
intervertebral discs. This may ultimately
cause a prolapsed disc, the origins of
which had been hidden in an obvious
emotional pattern. 
When anxiety begins to build up in the
life of a human being for an extended
period of time, either on a conscious or a
subconscious level, the delicate balance
between the emotional and physical
body is upset. The imbalance will be
expressed by the physical body in some
kind of dysfunction which causes pain
in the end. 
If we explore
closely the term
anger it has
its roots in the
meanings of
distress
and grief.
The origins
can also be
traced in
the German
language
where
“enghe”
literally
means
narrowing.
The same is
also found in the
Indo European
word “angh “,
which not only
means tight but
also painfully
constricted.
We can see a
relationship to
anxiety as both
words contain
the meaning of
narrowness. 
Sep/Oct 2011 29