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Andrew Lang - The Wednesday 1-2-3

We have more than 5 senses: The Wednesday 1-2-3

Published 2 months ago • 2 min read

Happy Wednesday Reader!

I'm trying a little experiment for the next few weeks and including a Community Question for you at the bottom of this email. Check it out and hit "reply" if it brings anything up in you!

Here's 1 teaching, 2 questions, and 3 resources to explore this week:


1. Teaching

The idea that we have five senses – sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch – dates back over 2,000 years to Aristotle.

And every year in schools, more and more children are taught about these senses. Teachers lead five-sense scavenger hunts, sensory walks, fun smelling and taste-based activities, and the always-joyful popcorn experiment (basically just a bunch of kids happily eating popcorn and talking about it.)

These are all great – but there’s a problem: we usually never teach kids about their other senses, which leads to adults who don’t even know they exist. (Which means, to be fair to my colleagues in education, that our teachers probably don’t know they exist either.)

"To experience embodied awareness, take notice of the underlying sensations that actually inform you about how you feel."
– Dr. Peter A. Levine

While neuroscientists are all over the place with the exact number (I've seen as many as 56!) we know one thing for certain: we have more than five. In addition to the ones we all know, here are a couple more to practice getting acquainted with (and some will take practice!):

  • Balance: How we experience our body's position and movement in relation to gravity.
  • Internal Pain: How we experience pain within our bodies.
  • Proprioception: How we experience joint and body position, movement, and orientation in space.
  • Temperature: How we experience hot and cold sensations.
  • Blood Pressure: How we experience changes in blood pressure within our bodies.
  • Lung Inflation: How we experience the expansion and contraction of our lungs during breathing.

This week, try tuning into these senses within your body and how recognizing them might help you live with more intentionality and awareness.

2. Questions

  1. What is your relationship with your senses? Do you ever take time to check-in with them and feel for what signals they're picking up?
  2. Take 5 minutes and play with these "additional senses." (You can do this by altering your balance, intentionally moving your joints, holding an ice pack close to your skin, and so on.) What did you notice about the quality of your awareness?

3. Resources


⏪ If you missed last week's email:

I shared a teaching from Gabes Torres about oscillation in the face of injustice.


Hope all is well-enough with you,

Andrew

IG: @andrewglang

🧩 Community Question

(As an invitation into storytelling, I'll be sharing a community question each week for the next month or so. If an answer or short story pops up for you in response, please share by hitting "reply!")

Who has been a wisdom teacher in your life?

This might be an Elder, a friend, an author, a teacher, someone you know personally or someone you don't, someone alive or someone now an ancestor: another person whose wisdom has supported you and modeled for you what it means to live into the fullness of your humanity.

Andrew Lang - The Wednesday 1-2-3

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