Tone .Are

– The New Man –

In Uncategorized on October 12, 2010 at 5:16 pm

Healing Circle

Reflection, 10/2/10

Tony Rivera

My first Men’s Healing Circle experience was one I will never forget.

Just the night prior, I struggled with a bit of resistance, having been asked by Rafael, on the spot, whether I might attend the following morning.  10am he informed me, “in my home in Queens”.  Or course I responded with a “well”, when before I could give him the run-around, he offered that I could stay the night so that I wouldn’t have to travel from Staten Island the following day.

Upon stretching the sleep from my body, I found myself before an alter prepared on the floor of his living room before me.  Stones, aligned particular to spiritual directions Rafael later explained, surrounded sage on a red cloth.  Before long the brothers whom would join us for the circle, arrived, light on their feet and with light in their faces.

Going into commencement I was in a state of peacefulness as I recognized, via my foreknowledge of the nature of healing circles, along with my personal relationship with the good Brothers present, that I was in a safe space.  So as we held hands for a blessing, and settled into a go-around to share where we are in our health, family, physical and spiritual, I was able to communicate clearly.  It wasn’t until we began in the more physical sharing that, as I had expected, I began to feel a more forced bolstering of my support to the circle.  My role required that I touch another man where he felt tension on his body, and the first location I was called to meet that energy, was on his face.  It was my pleasure to remain present and bring my hands to his face, however when my hands were brought to my neutral position at his knee, that’s where I felt the tension; as I struggled with the comfort of resigning until asked again to apply them, and integrity to the process, in keeping them busy, working, helping.  As the experience went on though, my level of comfort took my power over the insecurities dictating the moment.

When it was my turn to open up to the hands and voices of my comrades before me, behind me, I was totally open to what possible to come, yet cynical as to whether anything invoked might draw my emotion.  Within two and a half minutes my voice was cracking, and from there the tears; this was real!  It wasn’t as if though I was sharing some undiscovered pain, I spoke on an episode in my life which I have shared with others, which I had a perfect interpretation of (it was a dream of my Mother and Father marrying, a very short dream in which she simply drops her ring and echos a startled “oh”).  This time however, there seemed to be at the essence of the exercise: an almost intrinsic conduit for total expression of my relation to that experience, to clear me.

The Brothers’ hands inquired where my body was holding back, and as they massaged and pressed I freed up evermore to the direction their questions coached me in, towards the moment.  I was asked to visualize whom was in the room when I had this recurrent dream (something I had never considered, I’ve always been so enveloped in the actual dream), I was asked about my mother, and my father, and I allowed my thoughts to flow.  They took me to my fathers lap where he’d sit my brother and I when he drank, in order to investigate what was going on back home (they had already been separated) and to berate my Mother.  “What would you like to tell your father”, Rafael would continue.  And it was at that moment that I began to dialogue with my Father, in the moment, as if though it was just the two of us, speaking about something I had never had the power to address him with.  “Do not say those things about my Mother.  She is a good person”, “I forgive you.  I love you!”, etc.   And my Father would respond in kind: “I am sorry”, “I love you.”

The healing circle allowed me to clear the air with something that I’ve been carrying around for a long time.  It was in the space with these other Brothers sharing their own vulnerability, that we all came out stronger, in the realest sense of the word.  As Men a lot of our presumed strength enlies in this fallacy of what we are conditioned to believe strength is.  And because these “strengths’’ are really weaknesses which ultimately equate to our failure to be capable of loving, working, living to our fullest potential, we exist in the world as relics of the human experience, swinging at the world through a straight jacket, and humping through chastity belts.  Thinking we know what it is to fight, or to generate sexual pleasure; imagining that we are leaders in our lonely worlds.  Destroying ourselves and everything around us that doesn’t recognize us for the mound of stone we’ve become in the foreground of the sun on the horizon.

These are all things I have come to learn and understand from powerful Women and Men around me, and yet to experience it is a different thing.  I no longer look forward to being able to speak the language of freedom in my words, but through such essential practices as I experienced in the healing circle, to speak and listen in the language of freedom in my body; not simply on the page or some soap box, but everyday interactions with fellow Brothers, the real thing!

For reference on Healing Circles, and all things Health/Spiritual

evolve off of the work of Esperanza Martell @

  1. Wonderful! Glad to know that you have met this experience and will continue to meet and become enveloped. Purification of the soul….release of inaccurate toxicities….blocking the stairway to the heavens

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: