From times immemorial, our tribal ancestors have used various gestures, prayers, rhythms and rituals to expand their mind beyond the realm of ordinary reality. Ecstatic practices were used and are still used today by natives and shamans from around the world as a portal to connect the seen with the unseen. They are used to heal, to unify, and to ask for spiritual guidance. Before our logical thinking mind evolved to become dominant, the world of dreams, creativity and intuition played an important role in maintaining harmony between individuals and their environment. You can see representations of such ritualistic postures and rituals painted in ancient caves, carved in rock or on totem poles, and shaped in terracotta figures.
Some of these vestiges fell into the hands of the late Hungarian- born linguist and anthropologist Dr. Felicitas D. Goodman, whose specialty was religious trance and ancient tongues in the Pentecostal congregation of Mexico. She founded in 1978 the Cuyamungue Institute in New Mexico, where she continued her research on ecstatic body postures and on altered states of consciousness. For about 30 years, Felicitas revived ancient tradition through experiential and scientific exploration in order to reawaken in the modern world the connection humans can have with the spirit world and with their true radiant self through the medium of ritualistic body postures.
Ecstatic body posture involves five fundamental steps to facilitate the journey into ecstatic trance:
- Preparing oneself spiritually, mentally and physically.
- Establishing a sacred space with intention and respect.
- Quieting the mind through meditation and breathing practices.
- Stimulating the nervous system with a repetitive rhythm on the rattle or a drum.
- Undertaking a ritual through the use of ecstatic postures.
For more information on Ecstatic Body Posture visit: www.cuyamungueinstitute.com