The church needs to rediscover the healing power of touch. For years, I have been saying that the passing of the peace is just not intimate enough to count as touch. Now, before I go on I readily admit and ask for forgiveness for the ways that powerful people in the church preyed on innocent people using touch as their weapon. I hope that we can rebuild trust allowing us to use a tool that has enormous potential for healing. One of the axioms we explored this weekend says that touch and intimacy are deep human needs.
My husband participated in a yoga class a couple of weeks ago. He knew intellectually what I had been saying about how we use touch in a yoga class to create a connection, to send loving-kindness, and to leave a person feeling completely accepted for who they are today. At the end of class, he received touch by the teacher massaging his shoulders while in corpse pose. He described the touch as intimate and powerful wrapping up the entire experience of class. I have called the healing touch the icing on the cake at the end of class.
This weekend, we practiced yoga together as a class in some very different conditions. We were outside with our eyes closed navigating the wind, waves, and balance issues. I know that in most classes I feel strong and confident, but in this class, I felt very vulnerable. Towards the end of class, we were on the ground holding a difficult pose for several minutes. I focused on my breath trying to stay connected to the experience without wanting to escape!! At about the time that I wanted to escape if not in body at least in my mind, the teacher came around and just laid her hand on my back. Her touch was firm laced with a gentle, motherly edge. Her hand lingered for just a minute and then she was gone. In that one minute, I felt a wave of emotion release from a deep place within my body. My mind fought for words to explain how a simple hand place on my back held so much power.
I would love to hear if you have experienced a time in your life where a simple touch healed you.