Moumina and Agni are interviewed by Islam on their most expert subject.
People have asked us again and again about the Body Types in relationships. Are there types that tend to be more attracted to each other than others, and when they get together, what are the difficulties likely to be? And of course the ultimate question always is: And then – what to do?
To that, we always say the same thing: the only medicine is meditation…not to do anything…but simply see and embrace the issue. In the sunlight of consciousness, stale behaviour patterns start to lose their power over us.
The difficulty with that is that it isn’t always so easy to see what the real issue actually is. For example, someone who is an oral type may have a strong sense of grievance and injustice, based on not getting what they deserved when they were babies. But far from experiencing that as a problem, the person may be very proud of their sense of injustice; they may always be finding wrongs to put right and feel like a crusader in the world. Meditation on its own may be slow in revealing that the feeling of grievance towards their partner is in fact an ancient pattern.
What the Body Types training does is to give the ability to see the underlying patterns, to recognise the core issues and to feel the core emotions. The oral person would come to recognise that the sense of injustice is part of them, not the outside world; that underneath it is anger, underneath that is sadness and hollowness, under that is powerless helplessness, under that maybe a different type of ferocious rage, and underneath that … aaha! … under that is a treasure. At the core of any body type is the “lost treasure”, the essence quality which belongs just as much to each body type as the problems do. For the oral person, this is a sense of strength and peacefulness.
In our way of working with the body types, we emphasise the essence qualities just as much as the negative behaviour patterns of each type. The real problem arises if we decide to keep things in the unconscious and bury them there, not to be seen. Then we not only disconnect from the so called issue or problem. We also disconnect from the particular essence quality which is trapped or blocked by the issue. So to that extent, we are cut off from our roots.
Then, cut off from our roots, we search outside ourselves to find someone who has the qualities we lack. When we find such a person, we assume they will fill the holes in our being. And for a while, this feels great. But not for very long! Then the problems start. Let’s have a look at a few couples.
Helen (masochist) and Jeremy (schizoid)
Helen is attracted to Jeremy’s uniqueness and originality. Masochists have had to do what they are told and tend to be afraid to step outside the norm. She is thrilled by his honesty, sensitivity, eccentricity and non-conformity. Schizoid types tend to live in their own reality, often don’t see things the way others do and so can be highly original.
Jeremy is attracted to Helen’s warmth, solidity and physicality. Schizoids tend to be unconsciously afraid of living in their bodies and experience physicality as something that lives outside of themselves, yet they long for it. He finds her uncomplicated nature and nurturing qualities deeply relaxing. Schizoids have lacked a steady nurturing presence in childhood. Masochists, by contrast, had a mother who was probably very present and steady though she tied her child to herself with strings of guilt. So masochists have stored up an experience of warmth, & even though Helen doesn’t feel free inside, Jeremy senses the warmth inside her.
Helen has a strong sense of responsibility for doing what she ought to do, from being guilt tripped by her mother into ignoring her spontaneous impulses. Because Jeremy has a lot of unconscious fear, he doesn’t occupy the physical, practical world very effectively, and may not be a strong provider. After the honeymoon period is over, she starts to feels he is not there, and doubts that he can support her. She feels she has to support them both as if it were her duty and has to look after Jeremy (even when he doesn’t want it). She resents this but has difficulty saying it because she’s learned to stifle expressing her truth spontaneously.
Helen, as previously mentioned, was shamed by her mother into doing things she didn’t want to, and tends to feel that her freedom is taken away by doing what others ask her to do. So Jeremy finds that when he proposes activities to Helen that he feels would make them closer, like going to a tantra workshop or even just going to the movies, it is received by Helen resentfully, as a burden.
Also, Jeremy and Helen’s mental processes work very differently. His mind is abstract and unconventional, hers tends to be concrete and straightforward. He becomes frustrated with her very concrete, practical way of thinking and starts to become condescending. His thinking seems to come from a sometimes weird private place that she finds hard to make sense of, and she gets hurt and surprised by the sarcastic edge in his manner.
Transformation comes from not seeing the other person either as the problem or as the source of fulfilment.
By knowing Jeremy intimately Helen can discover that he has no intention to burden, shame, engulf, imprison or guilt-trip her. She assumes he has, but by really knowing him, she finds that this is just her assumption. As a result, Helen can use the relationship to discover that she already is free.
Jeremy can discover that he needn’t and indeed can’t rely on her to get a sense that the body is physically safe, but instead needs to discover the safety of his own body. Previously he has felt himself above practical realities, and seen them as as a limitation, or as tasks that take an intense effort to master. As he reconnects with his body he begins to make friends with those same practical realities and feels them as a support for himself to function in the practical physical world.
Helen was not in touch with her freedom, Jeremy was not in touch with his body. They can start to rediscover their essential qualities.
June (oral) and Dave (psychopath)
As an oral type June feels under-nourished and unconsciously looks to the outside world to satisfy and stimulate her and to provide capabilities she feels she lacks. As a psychopath Dave both feels himself to have something that other people want, and feels it is dangerous to be vulnerable to someone trying to get that; he feels that as a violation. Dave’s deepest fear is being used. To prevent this violation he has created an image of himself of someone powerful – and the person most fooled by this image is Dave himself. To prevent being used, he contrives to be on top in every interaction. At work he is in charge, socially he is a charismatic centre of attention.
June is attracted by Dave’s charisma and aura of success. She is drawn to the flashy, sparking scene he creates around himself, and wants to be part of it. She is in awe of his knowledge and the way he seems to understand her. His quality of power and competence makes her feel safe and she is charmed and impressed by his popularity among women.
Dave is charmed and touched by June’s adoration of him. He is very pleased by the way she tunes into him, tries to give him what he wants, makes him feel special (this reinforces his sense of his own specialness), proves that he is right, and needs him. He is attracted by her long legs, slim and girlish looks and her softness and vulnerability.
After some time together June finds herself getting obsessively jealous of Dave’s constant flirtations. She feels terribly hurt by the way he seems to judge and criticise her. And she begins to detect the scared person behind the facade, a person she cannot reach, a person he never shows. The things she is getting come from the bogus image and so don’t satisfy her. She tries to reach a more real part of Dave but being real brings down his image and is exactly what threatens him most. This makes her more and more desperate and hopeless.
Dave gets very irritated by June’s dependency and the way she seems to rely on him for everything. He feels she is holding him back and hanging on to him, and what seemed at first to be an attractive, surrendering, feminine woman, looks more like a constant hidden demand of attention to him. He feels triggered and gets the feeling of just being used to fulfil someone else’s need. This is Dave’s nightmare, and he fights her off by showing coldness.
When June doesn’t get what she needs she is thrown back to herself and begins to realise that she is depending on people outside of her. She sees that many things in life she has to do unsupported, and begins to discover that she has the strength to do that. With this new strength she decides to separate from Dave.
For the first time Dave meets a challenge to how he sees himself and begins to experience his vulnerability. To his surprise, though painful, the vulnerable feelings also access a depth of feeling and a relaxation that he hasn’t known before. He begins to realise that his charismatic way of relating has in fact been keeping him away from an intimacy that he hasn’t previously known existed.
Rick (phallic) and Debbie (hysteric)
Both the phallic and hysteric have different strategies to get attention and approval. The hysteric unconsciously acts in ways that make her the dramatic centre of attention; the phallic gets approval by being super-achieving. They both have an abundance of energy though the phallic keeps his tightly under control and the hysteric throws hers out incontinently in a failed attempt to love.
Rick is attracted by Debbie’s bubbly and emotional nature. He thinks she looks great and senses her juicy sexual energy.
Debbie is attracted by Rick’s aloofness and unreachable quality. It adds to his mystique. She senses the passion underneath his control and is reassured by his masculine competence, and go-ahead nature. She also likes his expensive but understated car.
Rick starts to find Debbie too emotionally demanding. He can’t make sense of her emotional outbursts and confused and contradictory speeches.
Debbie finds that Rick really is not just aloof, but unreachable. He seems to give more priority to his work and his car than to her, and she starts to feel desperate in her attempts to get through to him. Debbie’s expressions become more and more emotionally high voltage, with cloudbursts and thunderstorms which more and more drive Rick away. The more he retreats, the more Debbie ramps up the voltage.
Rick likes practical answers, and so he reads a book that suggests he simply listens to Debbie. As he listens and listens without reasoning, offering solutions or running away from the storms he is surprised to find that she relaxes because she finally feels seen and understood. Through this he discovers a quality completely new to him…non-doing; not solving, not achieving, not focussed on a goal.
When all Debbie’s energy is not going out to get his attention she relaxes into herself and experiences the fullness of her own love in a way that can make real connection rather than striving for it and driving Rick away.
Moumina Jeffs is the former Director of the Centre for Transformation at the Osho International Meditation Resort, India. She’s been leading transformative groups across Europe, South America, India and Japan for 29 years.
Agni Thalgott is a specialist in Neo-Reichian emotional release work and the Reichian Body types. She’s been leading international groups in Mystic Rose meditative therapy, Star Sapphire Energy Work, Childhood De-conditioning and Tantra for 18 years.
The two are leading a 10-day Body Types Training at Gartenhaus, Germany, 19th – 29th October 2012 – www.body-psychology.com
Interview by Islam (Andrew White) for Osho News – www.themagicofyou.co.uk
Photo credits: ‘Young Couple in Relationship Conflict’ and ‘Young Couple Sleeping’ by epSos.de on Flickr; ‘Do you want to run away now? – Day 15, Year 2’ and ‘Photocamp Leeds – Wedding Seminar by Mark Skeet’ by Purplemattfish also on Flickr.