Exercising a state of relaxation.
One of the first points to work on in practice is to exercise the state of relaxation. If the harmony of the body and mind is tense, hard, rigid, it produces a state in which it is very difficult to achieve improvement in the rest of the points to exercise. If this state is loose, separated (without a clear union), it will also be counter-productive to carry out a practice in harmony.
The ideal state of the body and mind is to be relaxed, but it should be clear that there can be many concepts of relaxation that will produce different states. The relaxation referred to in this point can be compared to embracing another person with love. In this way, the state of the body and mind in this embrace is not tense or hard but neither loose, separated or unenthusiastic.
The state in which one is in an embrace with love is the closest to the state of relaxation that is sought to explain in an exercise to practice, this simple concept encompasses a change of body state, an intention, a connection in the present moment etc. In any position that is chosen, it is sought to bring the body to an active relaxation through a specific thought "embrace with love".
This embrace is made with all parts of the body towards the central axis of this and at the same time a small upward movement is made during inhalation and a downward movement during exhalation. This movement is made so as not to exercise the state of relaxation in a static way, since there is nothing still in nature.
It is as important to have a clear concept that helps to relax as it is to review the concepts that each person has of relaxation. In many practice encounters, participants are asked what relaxation is for each one and a little is spoken about that idea.
You listen to what they say and in general the idea expressed does not necessarily lead to modifying a state. For example, it is very common to say that relaxation is being present in the moment, although living in the present can relax, many people can be tense or loose focusing on the present, to show this someone can be touched in a tense way and focusing on that present getting more and more rigid. If one wants to concentrate on the present to modify the state, we return to the question: what is that state or how can it be explained in order to change or exercise it?
Another common explanation is that relaxation is when one relaxes or releases thoughts or the body and thus we relax. Although this idea can help very stressed people, the relaxation we seek in this practice is something that is active, in motion and united. We seek to help the body and mind in a harmonious function where this state should not be loose because it would lose connection by not being well connected. Ideas such as comparing relaxation to breathing, to an activity such as walking, lying down, to a position, etc. are things that can relax but not necessarily will help us to exercise that state since most things can be done in different states. On the other hand, touching with love implies a clear state and if that state is not clear, it is only necessary to check if it is being done with love.
When performing the relaxation exercise, all people do largely what they already have as an idea of relaxation, and by talking about this and seeing if it works as an idea or not, it will help to improve the concept of relaxation and with a clear idea of this state comes a clear state. All people do what they think and what they express in their thought is seen in the state of their body. In general there are many intertwined ideas that are being built throughout life, this mix of ideas is also expressed in the body in that way. For all this, the importance of dialogue in the different practice encounters must be taken into account, which serves to see what each person thinks and does in order to then build a clear idea.
Doing things with love, embracing in this way is an unmistakable state with another, if one is tense, rigid, hard, squeezing the muscles, there is no doubt that one has to improve love. When touched without enthusiasm, in a loose, floppy, uninvolved way, we can also say that more love needs to be put in. Love is what leads us to a clear change of state, it is a concrete and undisputed idea, an idea that can be applied to everything we do in our lives. Therefore, the first point in practice is to exercise love in oneself and with the environment.