The Physiology Of The Human Spirit
Last week, in Seoul, Korea, my workshop theme was, The Physiology Of The Human Spirit.
Leonardo daVinci set out to discover the seat of the soul. No small task. He explored an area of the body known, in his time, as the sensus communis. Here, he plots the site of the sensus communis at the intersection of upright and diagonal lines seen within the tilted plane, at a point that marks the proportional centre of the skull.
Leonardo saw the sensus communis as a point of convergence, a center from which all voluntary action was controlled – everything from running, to walking, to lifting an arm, to singing a song, to the smallest details of expression like smiling, or raising an eyebrow. For daVinci, the sensus communis was the locus of the human soul. Leonardo writes, “The soul seems to reside, to be seated in that part where all the senses meet, called the sensus communis, and is not all-pervading throughout the body, as many have thought. Rather it is entirely in one part.”
The work, developed by F.M. Alexander seems, almost mysteriously, connected to Leonardo’s insights. But Alexander went a step further. He evolved a way, through touch, of helping others to experience this center in themselves.
Here, in these images, you can see people coming into contact with their sensus communis, you can see them residing in a place where the soul sits, in peace.