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Not too long ago I invested $30 in an updated version of the I Ching. If you are a regular reader, you would know that I occasionally check in with this divination tool to see what currents are presently passing through and around me. Fortunately I use one of the best interpretations (at least for psychotherapists, bodyworkers, somatic practitioners, yoga practitioners, and meditators), an interpretation by Julie Henderson, PhD.
Also not too long ago, I asked the I Ching what would be a good practice to rest down / relax in the midst of everything. I was having a difficult time in Florida at that point, unable to find a job I wanted, not sure what was next. And believe it or not, it said, “Relax your teeth.”
Now you may not see this as being very profound. But as someone who has some challenging aspects in my astrology chart, especially involving my kidneys (Saturn opposite Mars, 2nd / 8th house) and other nefarious type aspects, I pay attention whenever the I Ching mentions body parts. Because it is usually right on.
In the past, I used to wear a mouth guard because of grinding my teeth, and I still do it from time to time. Basically I can tell when I have been doing it for a number of reasons, but there is usually some type of stress which causes it – whether within or without. My dentist keeps trying to get me in a mouth guard, but I tried one of his hard (static, plastic) mouth guards and it did not allow my teeth to move and shift at all (even tiny micro-movements are vital), so I woke up with a rocking headache. Then the dentist mentioned that if I continue to grind away at my teeth, I may lose some of them prematurely… Not good. Long story short, my teeth are pretty important to me.
Luckily I had a day off. I relaxed down into the bed, trying to relax each body part consciously. Then I moved awareness and attention into my oral areas. I felt into my maxilla and mandible – the upper and lower jaw bones. Likewise I slowly moved awareness around and between each tooth – molars, pre-molars, etc. Each tooth I swept my attention through and around, inside surface, outer surface. Then I hummed into each tooth, into the roots.
This process may have taken at least half an hour, possibly closer to an hour. But you know what? It was a very profound experience. In the past, I have sort of neglected some of my body’s messages about self care and its limits. By analyzing and sweeping all my teeth with awareness, I discovered something helpful.
I have had my wisdom teeth removed, to that means I have 28 teeth remaining. Of those, 8 are molars. That means I should have four chewing surfaces between those eight teeth. But guess what? Two of my molars grew in different directions, meaning the upper tooth lands outside of the inner tooth. So that means I only have 3 chewing surfaces! And one of those molars has had extensive cavaties…
Basically I realized I cannot mess around with my teeth. I can’t think, “Oh you know, I have many teeth, I can afford to lose one.” No! The body is interconnected. If there is stress in the torso, the teeth may be affected. Like the myriad connections between emotions and body parts, I believe the body parts themselves cannot be taken as independent entities. The liver may need something specific, but maybe it is lacking in support from another organ.
These are just some random thoughts I have. From here on out however, I am practicing better self care, realizing the dentist’s words may prove to be true if I don’t take care of my body (and mind). Therefore, I plan to retreat from anything which causes harm or which does not move me along on my spiritual or life path.
Sometimes we come to these conclusions in unusual ways.
Thank you for reading!