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Dissertation Title:

The Embodied Experience of Rising Consciousness: The Somatics of the Energy of Desire and Practices for Expanding Self-Awareness


Susan Marie Chaney

Date, Time & Place:

January 5, 2016 at 11:00 am
Studio, Lambert Road campus


This dissertation explores how desire is a motivator for individual change and growth. The conscious presence of material desires is often a driving force of tension between the mind and body. Examining how the body communicates biologically aids in our understanding of some of the conflicts that arise in the individual psyche. By understanding the autonomic nervous system and our ability to shift from a state of trauma to relaxation through movement and conscious attention, it is possible to move past perceived blocks and expand our own potential. An examination of the types of desire are explored as well as practices that have the ability to shift material desires through conscious awareness.

As human beings we are interpreting energy information on many different levels at any given time, which affects us physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Energy information is decoded and intergraded from physical energy called gross energy to subtle energy that is not so easily measured. The subtle energy system, which is best-known as the chakra system, is a subtle energy structure that interfaces between the physical body and the subtle energies. The chakra system is the structural component through which archetypes move. Through careful examination of the chakra system, the archetypes of platonic solids, and traditional elements associated with each chakra this dissertation examines the paths to accessing conscious awareness.

Through an interdisciplinary approach that includes mythological studies, religious studies, depth psychology, neurobiology, alternative healing, and movement arts, this dissertation presents practices that integrate the mind, body, and emotions through conscious awareness and the body’s natural senses. When we are able to achieve mental, physical, and emotional well-being, vitality of life is enhanced. Personal well-being increases the vibrancy and health of communities. When we are connected to the well-being of our self, that connection exponentially enhances our relationship to others and the planet.



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Thank you for your kind consideration

  • Program/Track/Year: Mythological Studies, Track E, 2010
  • Chair: Dr. Patrick Mahaffey
  • Reader: Dr. Dana White
  • External Reader: Dr. Lydia Reineck
  • Keywords: Desire, Consciousness, Chakras, Platonic Solids, Traditional Elements, Breath, Human Energy System, Mythology