Spaces Filled with Possibilities Characterize Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy Sessions

Stephanie Abramson, RCST,  visiting Wyoming.

When I enter Stephanie Abramson’s treatment room time shifts as I tuck in for a restorative session of Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy (BCST).

When I receive BCST I experience safe and compassionate touch as well as a sense of being seen completely and accepted entirely.

It is fundamentally about being open to the stillness within us where all possibility resides.

This junction of liminal space is where growth, renewal and a return to the innate essence of our being can unfold.

Typical Session – Is There One?

During the first session, a client often completes an intake form, and a few minutes of conversation may follow.

“How are you feeling today?

“And where in your body do you experience health?

When I receive BCST I experience safe and compassionate touch as well as a sense of being seen completely and accepted entirely.

With my son son, Byron.

Before getting on the massage table fully clothed, the client may also be asked if there is an intention for the session.

And she may respond:

“I want to feel better.”

“I’d like to be more connected to my body.”

Or, “I really need rest.”

Being On the Table

When I’m the one on the table I often experience a sense of dropping deeply to a secure place where I am aware of but not focused on the therapist I’m with.

And while there, I often see images — numbers, furniture, people I don’t know.

These visions, though curious and entertaining, are only sometimes informative.

Some people sense heat or cold, see colors or have flashes of light.

Yet others may feel sensations in their bodies — tingling or movements that seem to come from nowhere.

And it’s just as likely the experience will be described simply as “restful.”

In this aliveness, anything is possible.

Since there is absolutely no “should” in BCST, whatever reaction one has is exactly right for the moment.

Sessions Can’t Be Structured

Sessions have no agenda; We don’t say, “Let’s work on your lower back today.”

While this is typical of massage and other modalities, that’s not how BCST works.

The therapist’s role is to witness the unfolding of the session rather than trying to steer the ship.

We pause in the stillness until the client’s intelligence gives us direction.

Byron often finds relief from the pain of scoliosis with BCST.

Then intuition guides the session.

The therapist’s and client’s nervous systems come into sync as they balance and ground together.

And quite often that time of alignment is noted by a pronounced out breath – something like a sigh.

Sometimes it doesn’t happen the first or even first few times a client and practitioner are together as degrees of trust vary from person to person.

Other times quietude may present itself simply in anticipation of the session.

While there are lists of conditions for which BCST may be helpful, I don’t make promises.

My pledge is to be fully present as the client’s essence reveals what it wants me to see.

In Stephanie’s presence, I trust that the guidance she receives is just what I need, whether I share an awareness of it or not.

So I sink deeply and enjoy feeling fully alive.

And in that aliveness, anything is possible.

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Take Action in Celebration of International Craniosacral Week October 15-21, 2018!

• Write Ellen for a free Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy appointment on Thursday, October 18, 2018: This is in celebration of International Craniosacral Week.

•  Make an appointment with Stephanie Abramson when traveling to Washington, DC.  ‭(240) 418-5459

•  Read From My Hands and Heart:  Achieving Health and Balance with Craniosacral Therapy, by Kate’ MacKinnon.

•  Find a registered therapist near you through the Biodynamic Craniosacral Association of North America (BCTA/NA).

•  Read The Breath of Life: An Introduction to Craniosacral Biodynamics by Cherionna Menzam Sills.

•   Read the summary and conclusion to the research article, The use of CranioSacral therapy for Autism Spectrum Disorders: Benefits from the viewpoints of parents, clients, and therapists, by Kratz, Kerr and Porter, Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapist, vol21(1), 1/2017, pages 19-29.

•  Watch Helen Robbins’ annimated Introduction to Craniosacral.

•  Read the summary and conclusion  to the research article, A systematic review to evaluate the clinical benefits of craniosacral therapy,  by Jakel and Hauenschild, Complementary Therapies in Medicine, vol20(6), 12/12, pages 456-465.

•  Watch the the British Craniosacral Therapy Association’s video,  What is Craniosacral Therapy?

•  See how Biodynamic Craniosacral is a model of Peace as Learned and Teachable Skills.

•  Consider how nonviolence toward women impacts one’s life in Alan Turgeon, Thank You For Your Decency.

•  •  •

Ellen Synakowski (she/her/hers) lives in Laramie, Wyoming. Her website is She is a Registered Craniosacral Therapist (RCST), is on the Board of Directors of the Biodynamic Craniosacral Association of North America (BCTA/NA), and has been practicing Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy since 2013.

“Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.  — C. West

Peace as Learned and Teachable Skills: UN International Day of Peace September 21, 2018


HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein Jordan reading Article 1 of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. (click photo to be taken to her reading)

Every year the United Nations presents the International Day of Peace.

And this year is especially notable because it marks the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

But the how to of peace can be elusive.

Over time, though, I’ve found three portals to equanimity.

And for me they overlap.

All three, it seems, know that as sentient beings we yearn for and move toward emotional and physical health.

And I choose to think peace fits in there, too.

Master of the Heart and HeartMath

Through personal, social and global coherence of HeartMath® I’ve learned to regulate my emotions.

All the while I am changing my heart rate variablility (HRV).

And HRV is a predictor of longevity, health and one’s emotional state.

Surprising to many,  coherence can be attained in the midst and moments of life’s challenges.

When I achieve coherence I am deeply content with my life.

The good news is that HeartMath tools can be taught to just about anyone at any age.

And with practice these skills lead to consistent, internal peace, regardless of external conditions.

I took my first HeartMath® class in 2009 from a master of the heart, David McArther.

And over time I learned to intentionally shift my physiology.

At will I can bring into balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic branches of my nervous system.

That is peace.

The Connection Practice

“Before directing the lightening in the sky, we must first harness the storms in our own hearts.”

From The Connection Practice I know that world peace, family peace — any peace — is futile without internal peace.

It is in the motto.

“Before directing the lightening in the sky, we must first harness the storms in our own hearts.”

The Connection Practice uses elements of HeartMath and Nonviolent Communication.

And these gentle starting places inform the Practice’s life-affirming skills.

From Nonviolent Communication we offer respectful empathy to ourselves and others.

Through HeartMath we access insight.

Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy

The third part of my profession and personal practice is biodynamic craniosacral therapy.

It is described as a “. . . a gentle, sensitive form of a hands-on approach to health.”

And it is truly magical.

After completing a session I am rested and deeply peaceful.

And that is true if I am receiving or facilitating.

As a practitioner I sense the rhythms within another’s nervous system — the breathe of life.

I set out to do nothing more.

In this way the practitioner is a mirror rather than a mechanic.

.  .  .

The United Nations International Day of Peace is an idea; it’s a chance to pause.

And perhaps in that pause you’ll ask if now is the right time to experience more peace in your life.

Take Action!

•  Books I recommend:  David McArthur – Your Spiritual Heart; HeartMath – The HeartMath Solution; Nonviolent Communication – Nonviolent Communication; The Connection Practice – Completely Connected, by Rita Marie Johnson; Cherionna Menzam-Sills – The Breath of Life.

•   Learn about HeartMath research and professional training.

•  Find a HeartMath professional in your area.

•  Read about The Connection Practice.

•  Find a Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapist in your area.

Previous Posts Related to Peace

•  Connecting:  When Needs are Met in a Simple Thank You

•  Connection Amid Political Chaos:  Impossible You Say?

•  Creating a Dignified Transition: A Daughter’s Gift to Her Mother

•  •  •

Ellen Synakowski (she/her/hers) lives in Laramie, Wyoming. She is a HeartMath Certified Trainer and Coach, and certified through HeartMath to administer the Stress and Well-being Assessment tool; A Connection Practice Trainer, a Trainer’s Trainer, and Coach; and a Registered Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapist (RCST®). Her website is

“Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.  — C. West