"Regardless of the underlying explanation, it works!"
I'd like to look into the underlying mindset from which we, as Hanna somatic educators, may operate.
It's a functional mindset. It's one that proceeds on the basis of understanding, not empirically, like Western pharmaceutical use or western medicine, but with an understanding of functional events (The pharmaceutical perspective can trace chemical events, but cannot bring the person as a living system to a healthy, self-regulating equilibrium. It lacks that essential understanding for restoring health.). One may generate understanding by means of The Great 4: Attention, Intention, Imagination, and Memory; in terms of actions carried out by oneself upon oneself and upon what self considers to be other-than-self acting upon oneself. Got that?
Seeing these aspects of somatic existence -- Attention, Intention, Imagination and Memory -- operating at every moment of our life, we have a framework for understanding the experience of our functionality and the process of our functionality changing.
How do we, as somas, change? We change spontaneously, where spontaneity is the somatic imperative, and therefore an exercise of all these: attention, intention, imagination, and memory. Spontaneity may be heavily influenced by memory, but when that happens, there is a time lag in the response as the memory surfaces and then makes influence. Not so spontaneous; a bit slow.
So, now, I've suggested how to recognize spontaneity, which is to say, freedom in one sense that Thomas Hanna meant it: an aspect of fairness -- to be "unbefouled" by memory cloaked in Attentional-Intentional Amnesia (S-M-A).
Change is a matter of action, of new action, and therefore of new perceptions, altered intentions, new interpretations of experience, new emergent creativity, and the lasting trace of all that, memory. Also known as, self.
It's a perspective.
Tom Hanna made much of the rationality and sensibility of hiw work, of how his work had a coherent and rational theoretical explanation for what it was doing and of what was being acted upon -- and what was being acted upon is The Big 4.
My point (thank God) being:
It does make a difference what's happening in a person from one course or another of action, therapeutic or educational.
As somatic educators, we may, as a perceptual exercise, view the world and our inner life as different aspects of a somatic process, "The two sides of the Looking Glass". We recognize that "subjecting" and "objective" are relative terms on a single continuum; there is no "all subjective" or "all objective". But the effects of The Big 4 do land in different domains -- in the case of The Epley maneuver, a mechanistic perspective leads to a mechanistic explanation for why it works -- the person has successfully moved the rocks in his or her head into a new location.
The same maneuver, viewed somatically, looks at what's happening in the person as a somatic experience, as (s)he does it. That other perspective leads to another, not-mechanistic explanation.
Understanding is a question of perspective -- and of understanding somatic experience as the integration of (at minimum) The Big 4. (There are more pairs than The Big 4, but The Big 4 are the minimum.)
Having had the experience of clients with vertigo have the vertigo diminish in minutes as I teach them to control their scalene muscles / neck movements suggests that "something is doing the same thing as The Epley Maneuver does -- but without the Epley Maneuver. Hmmm. What gives?"
That's my point.
One of the most consistent comments I hear from readers or from people I talk to is, "That makes sense."
Of course, another most common comment is, "I feel like I could take a nap."
( -the sounds of snoring in the auditorium- )