Richard Strozzi-Heckler - Anatomy of Change. PDF

PDF Ooh, I love this one! I bought it for a class a million years ago, before I was ready to read it. Actually, let me tell you that story, too.

I was only twenty, and I had just "run away from home" or whatever it is that you do when you leave without notice, when you are an adult. ("Pulling a geographic" is another way to put it.) So, I came back to the city (i.e., Oakland), and I started auditing this really amazing class in Somatics at the now-defunct New College in SF. And I was a right mess, in those days, but I was growing the best that I could in the circumstances. This class was totally transformational, too; I could feel that, even if I couldn't show up for it. And I literally could not show up for it.

I bought this book for the class, and then, when I ran back to the farm, I put the book far away. Years ago. And forgot about it. Until last winter, when my brother was cleaning out the barn behind his place and found all of my old things, including many many exciting books, of which this was one.

So, now, five and 3/4 years sober, I am ready for it, as I am moving into the body I've been living in for 30 years. This book explores the physicality of having a body. There is no good way to really describe it, which makes the feat of this book all the more impressive. The books has explanations and exercises, and it moves things into the world of "now-what" which I appreciate.

Two things keeping it from 5-star rating: 1) it feels a little scattered, like at the end, it kind of peters out, for some reason; 2) it is from the 90s and it hasn't exactly aged gracefully. It is interesting to see what I think/feel has changed over the last 10-15 years. I don't know how to put it exactly, but there is something in the way he writes about violence— oh, I know, the rhetoric of violence has shifted a great deal since 9/11/01. In the nineties, I think people were still talking about one-on-one violence as the big threat, whereas now, "terrorism" is the focus. I think it would be interesting to get an update, in the light of the 5+ year (illegal) war America is waging in Iraq, with a particular emphasis on our use of torture "as an interrogation technique."

Man, it just got heavy in here. I guess I'll end on the note that this book made me want to read more by Strozzi Heckler, and also to take aikido classes.

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