Larry Ball: F.M. Alexander & C.G. Jung
The practice of Alexander with Jung
|Address:||San Rafael, CA 94901|
THE PRACTICE OF THE ALEXANDER TECHNIQUE WITH THE PSYCHOLOGY OF C.G. JUNG
1. A description of my study, practice and teaching
2. Comments on my teaching
A description of my study, practice and teaching
C.G. Jung and F.M. Alexander believed that, by nature, we strive to manifest our full potential – our Wholeness, our Self, our Greater Personality. They each developed ways of how to approach this. Alexander approached them primarily from and through the Body; Jung primarily from and through the Psyche.
Through lessons we explore the interplay of Jung’s Psychology and Alexander’s Technique to better know and experience our wholeness. This interplay allows our wholeness to open the invisible doors of the indivisible unity of our psyche and body to our conscious ego. Experiencing psyche and body as one allows us to experience our wholeness – here and now. Our striving towards wholeness brings us joy, creativity, strength and clarity of choice and decision, and all of life’s other gifts, known and unknown.
Using my touch, words and presence, I will help you in this exploration.
Jung called the wholeness that transcends consciousness the Self”. He wrote that the goal of the individuation process is the entelechy of the Self – that which turns our potential into our reality as a whole Self. For Jung, the Self is both the individuating process and the goal towards which the individual is striving.
Alexander’s meaning of the Self is our wholeness. Alexander’s Technique is founded on the belief that we function as a whole and can only be fundamentally changed as a whole; that wholeness is our goal and changing as a whole is the means by which we seek our goal. This is another entelechy.
Our individual wholeness, Self and Greater Personality is within us, just as the butterfly is within the catepillar and the oak tree is within the acorn. Thus, we each are the entelechy of our Self. We each have the task and goal of turning our potential into our wholeness- our Self.
My own growing understanding of my wholeness, my Self, my Greater Personality, includes my life energies (divine, universal, psychic, instinctual, physical, and others unknown to me), heart, soul, spirit, sacred body, movement, feeling, psyche, self-knowledge, self-healing, values (e.g. morality, ethics, integrity, character), oneness with others (Thou Art That), nature, and God. (I use the word “God” because it satisfies me. And since the concept of wholeness is all inclusive – it includes everything in relativity with everything - there is much more of my wholeness, et al that remains unknown to me. Through study, practice, experience, and maturation this unknown becomes known.
As such, we each are our own entelechy.
Comments on my teaching
“As a student of movement for over 25 years, I have accumulated countless concepts, tips, and exercises that are meant to help me move and function better. But all of those things go out the window when working with Larry. He cuts through the fog and helps me see and experience that I already have everything I need to be free and whole right here, right now.
Matt Stevens, Linguist and Alexander Technique Teacher
“Larry was one of my teachers at the Alexander Training Institute - SF. After graduating in 2003, I went to him for continued training for two intensive periods of study. Larry offers a very unique philosophical perspective on the Alexander Technique, which I believe guides his teaching. But I didn’t go to him for philosophy; I went to him for the experience of his touch. Under his hands, I felt harmony, the mystery of my body’s own potential to heal itself, and a sense of intrinsic movement and vitality. It would be an exaggeration to say that I could feel cellular movement, but that’s the type of metaphor that rises to mind when working with Larry. His quiet touch provides deep wells of space that were particularly important to me during times of distress. Studying with Larry will not give you simple answers. You will instead experience the mystery of life in the body. As a teacher, I often reference his work.
Elyse Shafarman, Alexander Technique Teacher
“ I can’t thank Larry enough for the inspiration his lessons have given me. I have been trying to resolve the contradiction between doing and non-doing for years, ever since my earliest workshop with Marjorie Barstow more than 30 years ago. The shift of verbal emphasis Larry teaches in the words “let the universe do it” just dissolves the problem. A miracle really. And what is even more fantastic is that in lessons Larry stays with the sensitivity of touch that allows ‘it’ to do itself. Wow.”
Marion Miller, Alexander Technique Teacher
“Larry was my teacher at the San Francisco Alexander teacher's training school. Today he is my mentor. Larry's work opens a corridor of enlightenment that can only be found when one truly surrenders to the energy and balance of natural things.”
Alan Bolton, Alexander Technique Teacher
“My lessons with Larry have been deeply healing and revealing for me and I've appreciated them enormously.”
Rosie Powell. Alexander Technique Teacher
" As I write this I feel the echo of working with Larry just a few hours ago. And I feel re-opened in a new way - to my self and to my surroundings. Better not to say too much. Only to know that the direct experience is what matters and the quality of the vibration is much subtler than my ordinary materialistic experience. Right now I feel l like a buoy in calm gentle waters. This is in large part of just having worked with Larry."
David Page, Alexander Technique Teacher
I am a member of the American Society for the Alexander Technique. I graduated from the Alexander Training Institute of San Francisco in 1979. In those years the directors were Frank Ottiwell Giora Pinkus. I was one of the teachers assisting Frank Ottiwell at the school from 1981 until its closure in 2004. I also studied with Patrick McDonald and Walter and Dilys Carrington during their periodic workshops given at the San Francisco school. For 10 years I studied extensively with Marjorie Barstow in San Francisco and Lincoln, Nebraska. Marjorie and Frank are my mentors. I have been exploring, studying/writing and practicing Alexander's work since 1976. I have been teaching since 1979.
I have been a serious student of the psychology of Carl Jung since 1976. Since the beginning of my Alexander studies I have sought to understand my Jungian work as it interplays with my Alexander work and vice-versa. Monica Norcia, my wife and also an Alexander teacher and long-time student of Jung's work, and I have recently completed teaching a series of classes on this interplay at the C.G. Jung Institute of San Francisco. From experiences in these classes and feedback from participants since, we now know that there is great value in exploring this interplay. We are continuing to develop these classes and hope to teach more of this interplay in the near future. In the meantime my own teaching practice is based on this interplay.
I have certifications in Reiki I and II (2007-2008) and a certification iin Sha manic Healing Practices (2014).
For 46 years I have been a serious track runner. My track running has been a major means of my working with my wholeness and Alexander's technique.
Concurrent with my Alexander teaching, from 1981 to 2014 I practiced law as a civil rights litigator in private practice in San Francisco in the field of employment discrimination and harassment, representing employees. At the time I retired from law in 2014, I had been elected a "Super Lawyer" (top 5%) by my peers in my field in San Francisco and the Bay area for 10 straight years.
My Bachelor of Arts degree is from the University of California at Berkeley (1969). My Juris Doctor degree is from U.C. Berkeley’s School of Law (1974). In 1974-75 I worked as a Vista Volunteer lawyer (Vista was the U.S. domestic version of the Peace Corp) in the Mission District of San Francisco for the San Francisco Neighborhood Legal Assistance Foundation.
I live and teach in San Rafael.