Fire Hose Exercise
The purpose of this exercise is to bring breathe/oxygen/chi/healing energy to the lower abdominal area.
When you breathe into this area and fill it with oxygen and chi, it breaks up stuck energy. Energy moves, body memory becomes dislodged, thoughts and feelings come to the surface and the entire mind-body system moves forward towards greater health.
I often recommend this exercise when an individual feels a sense of numbness and paralysis in this area. When this area is numb, the individual will tend to have a difficult time experiencing fulfillment in their life. Interactions will feel boring. There's no juice. The individual will be stuck in the analysis of a situation without any feeling sense - and this sets them up for a lack of clarity, a lack of deep feeling about how to proceed.
This numbness in the gut/lower abdominal area is characteristic for some homeopathic remedy states - including, but not limited to: Silicea (numbing of grief and overwhelm from early childhood), Hydrastis Canadensis (golden seal) (numbing of deep emotion due to shame by the part of the psyche that is rational and shame based), Cantharis (numbing of shadow emotions due to rigid self-image, striving for spiritual perfection), Lycopodium (numbing of emotional messiness due to shame and low self-esteem, fear of disempowerment), Sulphur (denial of deeper emotions, intellectualism), Carcinosin (numbing of deep emotions with fear of burdening others, self-sacrificing), and Lachesis (numbing of shadow emotions due to shame and entrancement).
With all of these remedy states the individual is top heavy (up in their head analyzing, worrying, plotting, strategizing), and not grounded in their core. This exercise helps the individual become grounded in their core again, and can, if done effectively, move the individual out of the homeopathic remedy state. When they move out of the homeopathic remedy state, they move out of the physical and emotional symptoms associated with that state.
I should also comment here on the gut-brain connection. I've learned over the years that when the gut feels numb, the limbic system within the brain is typically locked up as well (frozen fear). The limbic system, which includes the amygdala, thalamus, hypothalamus, and hippocampus parts of the brain, maps to deep and complex emotions. The limbic system is instrumental in the blocking or compartmentalization of deep emotions because of past trauma. This ensures our survival, but also contributes to chronic physical and emotional health issues.
The fire hose exercise, or any modality that facilitates the release of numbness from the gut area (intention, homeopathy, herbs, flower essences) helps the limbic system release compartmentalization. This moves the individual towards an experience of deeper emotions (hence great fulfillment in the long run) and a resolution of chronic health problems.
It goes like this...
Imagine someone is standing in front of you holding a fire hose. They are pointing the fire hose at your lower abdominal area and shooting a stream at this area - but instead of water coming out, the hose is shooting oxygen and chi. The flow of oxygen goes through your skin and directly into your cells.
The individual moves the fire hose slowly from left to right. The flow of oxygen and chi fills the cells in your bladder. They are like balloons, filling, filling, filling with oxygen and chi.
Then the hose fills the cells in the nerves connected to your bladder, filling, filling, filling the cells. They start to expand and become fuller and fuller.
Then it fills the nerve cells surrounding your small intestines - every nerve cell is filling up, filling up, filling up.
As you are imagining this filling up process take an in-breadth - slowly through your nose and watch the fire hose fill, fill, fill your lower abdominal area. Breathe in, breathe in, breathe in through your lower abdominal area for about twenty seconds as you are visualizing this.
Also,try to feel what it would feel like if someone really were firing a hose directly at and through the skin of your lower abdominal area. Imagine a sucking feeling in this area. The cells suck in, suck in, suck in the oxygen and chi.
After twenty seconds or so, breathe out and relax. Imagine all of the cells in your lower abdominal area relaxing. Relax your nose and lungs. Take a break.
Then,after about a minute do it again. Breath in, breath in, breath in, breath in and feel your whole abdominal area filling, filling, filling with oxygen and chi.
The individual holding the hose is moving the hose from left to right, then up and down. He/she is pointing it at the cells in your small intestine for a long time, then the cells in your lower back connecting to your reproductive system and your bladder, then the cells in your reproductive system, then your bladder.
The fire hose moves from place to place as if it's watering different parts of a large lawn. It stays at a particular location until there is saturation. Try keeping the hose focused on one area for 5-6 long breaths before moving on to another area.
This can be a laborious exercise at times - but at the same time it's free and I know from experience that if you do a deep breathing exercise like this for a long time (40 minutes - 2 hours at a time) you can and most likely will experience tremendous gains. It can save you the cost of an acupuncture session or a consult with a body-work specialist or herbalist. Deep breathing really works and, again... it's free and there are no harmful side effects.
Once you become familiar and practiced with this exercise, you can do it while doing other tasks (commuting, washing dishes, watching TV, waiting in line, etc).
I sometimes recommend to my clients to do this type of breathing every night before turning out the light. (10, 20, or 30 minutes) - and also when they wake up for 10, 20 or 30 minutes at a time.
I also recommend it for people who suffer from insomnia - I tell them - if you can't sleep why not try this for a few hours. Often a night of deep breathing will so energize the mind-body system that when the individual finally does fall asleep (that last hour before they have to get up), that short amount of sleep will be so nourishing it may be the equivalent of eight hours of sleep without the deep breathing.
And, for individuals who suffer from chronic illness and can't work during the day - this is a proactive step they can take to regain their health - and they can do it anywhere, and, again, it's free.
And, in terms of the twelve stages of healing, this exercise is especially effective when an individual is in stage five of the healing process (merging with the shadow). Once someone arrives to stage eight (the calm after the storm), this exercise isn't really needed and doesn't provide the same gains.