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Book: Surrendering to the flow of life. Fernando Aguiar

Book review: Surrendering to the flow of life

Subtitle: Beyond Character structures

Author: Fernando Aguiar, Brazil 2020
Translated by Tracie Shannon Houlihan, 2020

Review in Portugese and in English

Reviewer: Thaís de Queiroz e Silva
Body Therapist – Core Energetics
Master Physical Education, UnB – Brazil
Graduation Physical Education and Social Communication, UnB – Brazil


Surrendering to the Flow of Life: Beyond Character Defense Structures was first published in Brazilian Portuguese (2019). It is the result of a 5-year research by the author, Fernando Aguiar, in which he used different therapeutic and meditative practices to observe the flow of vital energy in his own body and consciousness. The author writes in the first person and clearly and objectively exposes the intimacy of his findings in relationship with the flow. He defines flow as “listening carefully to the organism, what it needs, what is moving or seeking to move”.

The book has two parts, the first one explains the main concepts, and the second describes how surrendering to the flow happens in workshops and in an in depth experiential group. The theoretical part focuses on character defense structures and how to move energy in search of flow. It uses concepts from Core Energetics, TRE – Trauma Releasing Exercises and Pathwork. Chapters 4, 5 and 6 seem to be the heart of the book, in which “beyond the character structures” is presented in a 180-degree rotation: the author discusses the stages of development not from the childhood trauma and defenses perspective, but through the lens of the free flow of Structuring Intelligences and the adaptive quality of human development. He points out that each Defense Structure has its origin in an Intelligence that is available to be integrated by the child throughout development. In adulthood, the transformation happens as we reconnect to the free expression of the Intelligences. Continue reading