Pent up- featured image

Pent up

Pent Up cover image

Moshe Feldenkrais repeatedly challenged the commonly held hydraulic model of emotions by asking us why there was no such a thing as pent-up joy. He asked us to consider how anger could create pressure building up to an eventual explosion if this was not the case with other feelings.

Recasting feeling and perceiving as occurrences rather than objects, he suggested that we have the option to react independently of our personal history and habit. Feldenkrais’ neurophysical framework opens the door to transforming our ingrained attitudes by changing how we move and hold ourselves. 

Instead of thinking of psychosomatic problems, this offers the possibility of a somatopsychological solution. If emotions are, as he defined them, anchored in patterns of muscle contraction, rather than needing to re-experience traumatic events and have a cathartic release, you can modify your affective state by interrupting and undoing unconscious, compulsive embodied reactions. 

Altering how you feel can begin by experiencing a change in how you embody the moment and live in your skin. Think of how you know when someone has genuinely changed: you recognize the tangible difference in how someone carries themselves. 

Why not start there?

I used a photo found on as the basis for the image at the top of today’s blog.

Your thoughts?
Please let us know your perspective! Add your comments, reactions, suggestions, ideas, etc., by first logging in to your Mind in Motion account and then clicking here.

Commenting is only available to the Mind in Motion Online community.

Join in by getting your free account, which gives you access to the e-book edition of Articulating Changes (Larry's now-classic Master's thesis), ATM® lessons, and more — all at no charge whatsoever.

To find out more and sign up, please click here.

Please share this blog post

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

This blog may contain one or more affiliate links. When you click on a link and then make a purchase, Mind in Motion receives a payment. Please note that we only link to products we believe in and services that we support. You can learn more about how affiliate links work and why we use them here