Embodied Running

Ecopsychology Project

To meditate – to contemplate your being has become a culturally accessible way to stay in touch with the you within you. We have learned, from our own culture or from another, to practice meditation as a means of listening to our nature; to sit within the body and gaze at the truth. But what of our bodies? When you examine our bodies, when you look in the mirror and see a reflection of your body, you are looking at a design. It has form, it has structure, it is built a certain way. And implicit within the design of your body is how you move. And movement implies interaction with the world around you.

The word Soul comes from the word Animus; to be animate; to be in motion. Our nature is not contained within us. The only thing within us is the blueprint or code of our structural body. Our nature is found out there; in how we move, how we act, how we behave, how we respond – and this in turn shapes who we become.
By design, our bodies are incredibly well adapted for running. Not just walking, but running. This adaptation implies a relationship to our environment, and to creatures who share that environment with us. When we engage in the activities that our bodies are evolutionary shaped to do, we “tap into” the source of our soul and our ancient ancestors. As one runner once said after he and a group of comrades in the deserts of Santa Fe came to together to chase down an antelope using the power of out-enduring, “You feel like you are back….” …back in your body.
The purpose with this rhetoric is not to promote running for your health and fitness but rather to explore running just as one explores meditation: a spiritual process of connecting to who you are truly, your very nature, and to live from there, to then act and move and behave from there – continuing the evolutionary story of humankind.

 

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