Book: Stalking Wild Psoas, Embodying Your Core Intelligence
Author: Liz Koch, North Atlantic Books, Berkeley, California, 2019
Dutch Version: Psoas de spier van de ziel. Symbool voor de verbinding tussen lichaam en ziel, Liz Koch, AnkhHermes, Utrecht, 2012
Book review by Willie van Boven, Core Energetics Therapist and translator of the Dutch version of Stalking Wild Psoas.
Liz Koch, who has been observing kinesthetic intelligence and somatic awareness for more than forty years, gathered in this book 9 essays in which she shares her knowledge about psoas. Psoas, this intriguing muscle that connects the upper body with the lower body.
Liz starts by pleading for a new language: as long as we continue to compare ourselves to machines, we consider ourselves merely as death objects, instead of always changing parts of life.
With her essays, Liz takes the reader with her on a holistic journey: she combines knowledge from different fields of science, and makes us feel into ourselves, in our bodies. By focusing on psoas, which she considers to be the ‘core messenger’, she brings awareness to our core. Liz came to understand psoas to be a special kind of muscle: not just a kind of cable that can be contracted or released, but rather an organ of perception that offers much more. Like the tongue is a special muscle that enables us to taste and to sense, or the heart that is that very special muscle that is not just pumping blood around but also is a junction of energies flowing through us, psoas is special too. It is considered to be the muscle of our soul. It plays a huge part in sensing danger, and in storing the remnant of past events. Psoas helps us to run or fight in case of big danger. When we survived the danger, psoas operates as the voice of our soul. If we dare to listen, psoas helps us to become aware of what is important to us. It may give the message of unfinished business, it may give us information about a longing, a desire, it may talk to us about never dissolved grief.
The essays are a mixture of indepth knowledge about life as an integrated whole and very accessible examples of human beings listening to their psoas. Each chapter comes with many notes, that in themselves are already a beautiful source of information.
In her earlier books – Core Awareness and The Psoas book – Liz gives more practical information: exploration that can be done, so the psoas is invited to express itself. In this book, Liz inspires her readers by combining all she observed and giving beautiful poetical reports of that.
For us as Core Therapist, the exercises and the unfolding of energy are familiar. What will inspire us is the humbleness towards the innate wisdom of the body. Liz shows us how our body will always tell us where to pay attention to, in it’s own time, in it’s own pace.
I recommend it to anyone who wants to deepen his or her understanding of the innate wisdom we all have, to anyone who wants to be inspired again and again to listen to our deepest core. Just as we as Core Therapists know that we can never leave ourselves out of the meeting with a client, Liz encourages us to explore together, to be willing to dive into the unknown, to help the client listen to the voice of their own soul by listening to the voice of our souls, speaking through psoas. The book is a call to stop our striving, to stop bettering ourselves or our clients, and to continue to unfold organically, and let our clients unfold organically. Core Energetics and Liz’ Core Intelligence share the reciprocal importance of consciousness, awareness and energy. The more we learn to listen to our body and mirror that to our clients, the more we thrive.