My family knows me as a hugger. They explain to their friends, “she just can’t help herself” as I reach out and pull them in. Even if you are not a hugger like I am, I’m sure you can appreciate how it feels to have your arm or cheek caressed by a baby, or to have your head massaged when being shampooed before a haircut. In my nursing experience I remember the importance of cuddling of babies, as the positive effects of touch and healing are scientifically linked in numerous studies. Our human skin has four million sensory receptors. Translation— it’s highly responsive to touch.
Why not try this hugging practice from one of our long-time favorite gurus.
Thich Nhat Hanh’s Hugging Meditation
According to the practice, you have to make him or her very real in your arms, not just for the sake of appearances, patting him on the back to pretend you are there, but breathing consciously and hugging with all your body, spirit, and heart.
Hugging meditation is a practice of mindfulness. “Breathing in, I know my dear one is in my arms, alive. Breathing out, she is so precious to me.”
If you breathe deeply like that, holding the person you love, the energy of your care and appreciation will penetrate into that person and she will be nourished and bloom like a flower.
Elizabeth, Sarah, and Allie