By Gilad Shoham, BCPP
Pioneering Ancient Wisdom
Polarity Therapy is an opportunity to be a pioneer in working with ancient wisdom. To me, that reads as an oxymoron. However, it contains a polarized expression of the art that is Polarity Therapy.
The wisdom that Polarity draws from was closely guarded for millennia and shrouded under layers of metaphor. To access it, seekers had to go to great lengths and efforts, often joining orders and dedicating their lives. The current age of knowledge broke the traditions, creating public access.
However, the conversion of knowledge to wisdom was left wanting and the practices of embodiment were left by the wayside. Electronic media replaced story-telling by tribal elders and corporate conventions overtook the time dedicated to masonic lodges. As initiates in renewed form, we have an opportunity to renew the practices that would give the knowledge dimensionality and embody it as wisdom. In that sense, Polarity practitionership is pioneering.
My own path with Polarity Therapy led me to meeting my partner and wife. We fashioned our wedding from the key pieces of our earth cultures (Native American and Judaism) that spoke to us and resonated the joint life we wanted to invoke based on principles echoed through Polarity. We had taken the principles we use to help people in our therapeutic bodywork practices and applied them to our day to day lives, infusing our partnership and family. Then, reflecting on our values, it became clear that we strive to create community that lives an embodiment of the wisdom contained in the philosophy and healing art that brought us together. Listening to the concept “As Within – So Without”, we decided to reach out and focus on rippling our work outward.
Polarity Therapy is unique in empowering the people who seek it to step into more responsibility for their lives. Polarity practitioners are educators as an integral part of right alignment in their practice. In our practice we became educators, teaching bodywork modalities and childbirth classes.
Recently, we chose to transplant our lives from Tempe, Arizona to the Upper Galilee in Israel. We not only moved to another country across the world, we completely changed our lifestyle and moved from a major American metropolis to a rural agricultural community. This has brought us closer to the elements and cycle of the seasons. It also gave us a true sense of pioneering.
Building a Polarity Practice in Israel has been interesting. We found in Israel a handful of Polarity practitioners. To strengthen our community, we connected immediately. In building our Therapeutic Bodywork practice, we set out to translate material and use it to educate our community. That process has been enlightening. Finding words and appropriate cultural metaphors has grounded us in our practice. We now embody our teachings and infuse them into everything we do.
We also connected with other practitioners, including osteopaths, Chinese doctors, naturopaths, birth workers and more. What stood out was a yearning for community. Collaboration and empowerment is now an integral part to what we are creating. In branching out from the USA we found a global community. Connecting to other organizations has been inspiring. Just as a tree grows outward only so much as can be supported by a similar rooting into the ground, we also looked back to where we had just come from and embraced technology that helps us stay connected. We created a Facebook group where we provide education and facilitate meaningful conversations about Polarity in everyday life. We found that it spoke not only to our network of practitioners and likeminded friends, but answered a need for people seeking meaning in their lives. The more we connect with our (now) global community, the more we appreciate the resources we draw from.
We are blessed to have found fertile ground. We have been met with open arms and a thirst for what we offer. Within just three months we have created a sustaining Therapeutic Bodywork practice. The process has been so profound that we set to create an even greater community. We adjusted our mission to a global initiative for Polarity education. Through social media platforms we are connecting the web of our global community and are now creating a movement of Polarity education online.
There is a poetic element to our story. For years, my teacher encouraged me that bringing my work home is part of the learning process and told me of the potential in that reflection. Now, having brought Polarity Therapy to my home in Israel, I’m appreciating his words. I am sitting by the Jordan River, the main water source in this land for thousands of years. As I sit, I am contemplating the sages drinking from these same waters. And now I have the privilege of applying their insights in my therapeutic bodywork practice and be a pioneer in bringing their wisdom in innovative ways to a global community.
Gilad Shoham BCPP, RPE, practiced and taught Polarity at Southwest Institute of Healing Arts in Tempe, Arizona. Seeking a life of immersion in the elements he emigrated with his family and now lives in Sde Nehemia, Israel. As owners of Roots Of Life (www.RootsOfLife.co.il), Gilad and Aubrey Shoham work to educate individuals to participate in their health as a practice for an ecstatic life. Visit their Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheAlchemistFamily/