The Sea Creature Movement Meditation is a gentle somatic movement exercise that draws upon imagination, interoception (the internal body sense), and proprioception (the sense of one’s body in space). The evocation of movement through water is also meant to support muscle relaxation and gentle fascial unwinding. It can be done in a stationary, seated position, standing up in one spot, or as a movement exercise that uses an entire room. I use this somatic practice with all groups of people, of all ages, and it has quickly become a favorite.
Somatic movement and movement meditations have a vast range of benefits, but in particular, activities like this one can provide low-barrier access to introspection and embodiment. Often, adult forays into embodiment are high-intensity, high discipline practices. We are told we have to sit still without moving, staring at a wall, for an hour straight; or else we have to bend ourselves into 20 convoluted yoga poses in succession. Such disciplined practices are powerful and important, but they can also jar the nervous system and trigger traumatic memories that are stored in the soma (the bodymind). But movement and meditation are human birthrights, and we can cultivate them with fun, whimsy, and pleasure as well. The addition of imaginative play and free yet guided movement can additionally provide a container that supports us to explore our internal and external landscapes without diving deep into potentially traumatic territory.
This free Sea Creature meditation is my gift to you: as you shapeshift from shellfish to coral to sea anemone to jellyfish and more, can you use this practice to find ease and/or delight in your body? Is there a change in your breathing before and after the practice? Was there an ocean animal that you most enjoyed becoming, and are there ways you can bring the feeling of being that animal into your everyday life? How can embodiment support you in becoming more loving: first toward yourself, and then toward others?