A cura di Paolo B. Casartelli, editing di Rose Najia

Questo articolo fu scritto nel 2010 come introduzione alla prima formazione in Biodinamica Craniosacrale tenuta in Cina, illustra i principi generali della Biodinamia e le intenzioni di una formazione.


Biodaynamic Craniosacral  is a comprehensive form of healing which involves subtle touch as the client relaxes on a massage table. Physically, it is very gentle. Energetically, psychologically, structurally, and spiritually it is very powerful and effective.

As the practitioner touches the client gently, the practitioner connects with two different forces. One is called Universal Forces of Health, the other is called Conditioned Forces of Experience. The Universal Forces of Health are the profound forces that organize life itself. These forces express themselves as rhythmic movements and fluctuations in nature and in all living organisms. These forces are the carriers of the universal intelligence which create and maintain life. The forces are invisible to most people, but with proper Biodynamic Craniosacral training, anyone can learn to recognize and feel them. Feeling these rhythmic movements of life energy is somewhat similar to what Chinese Medicine doctors do when they feel our pulse and learn about our whole body and history from that receptive listening and sensing. In Biodynamic Craniosacral , however, it is not the blood pulse which the practitioner is listening to and feeling, but whole body rhythms and movements.

If the rhythms of the Universal Forces of Health are unobstructed in our body/mind/spirit, we generally experience excellent health and balance. But many experiences in life create obstacles to the healthy, natural movement of those life creating, life sustaining forces. These obstructing forces are the Conditioned Forces of Experience, things like trapped energies, tensions, difficulties, beliefs, birth traumas and other emotional and physical shocks, injuries, and illnesses. As a result of these traumas and difficulties, we lose contact with the original intelligence of the Universal Forces of Health. The human body, all living organism, know what is necessary in order to heal. The body and mind are self healing. They know exactly what to do, how and when, but the Conditioned Forces of Experience can cause us to lose touch with that “intrinsic intelligence” and its “intrinsic healing plan.”

Our lives, the degree of well-being or suffering we experience, the way we function, are shaped by interaction between Universal Forces of Health and Conditioned Forces of Experience, by how these two forces interrelate. Craniosacral Biodynamics is a methodology for listening to and orienting to the relationship between these two forces. These methods allow craniosacral practitioners to work directly with the Universal Forces of Health which in turn can clear the obstacles of the Conditioned Self in safe, gentle, and profoundly effective ways. Craniosacral studies call the Universal Forces for Health “the Breath of Life.”

The Blueprint for Health

The Breath of Life is responsible for the creation and generation of the human body. It is the basic set of forces, energies, and movements which acts through the genes, the DNA and the fluids in the body. The Breath of Life is responsible for the organization of our physiology, metabolism, our emotional states, our minds and even our spiritual experience. During my Craniosacral Biodynamics presentations and training courses, I present evidence and scientific research that illustrates how this works and how effective this form of healing is. Fortunately, there is an abundance of clinical experience and documented research on the effectiveness and efficacy of Craniosacral Biodynamics. Many forms of energy treatment and alternative medicine claim to work with these life forces, but in my personal observation and experience, Craniosacral Biodynamics is the most scientific and precise.

There are many different schools and approaches to Craniosacral Biodynamics. Some approaches focus more on the physical wellbeing, some approaches focus on the mind and interpersonal relationships, while others give primary attention to spiritual aspects. Craniosacral, in all its forms, is widely used in the west. In the United States it is so widely recognized that patients’ Craniosacral treatments are at times even covered by health insurances. In England, Craniosacral Biodynamics is sometimes present in medical and health centers and many psychologists, psychoterapists and counsellors are beginning to use it in their practices as well. In Europe it is used by doctors, naturopaths, obstetricians, beauty spas, counsellors as well as other non-health professionals.

To offer a little more detail, let me explain that the specific Biodynamic Craniosacral  I am teaching today is a synthesis of traditional craniosacral methods, developed over the last hundred years, as well as cutting edge knowledge from science and medicine, in addition to my personal research and that of my staff.

Some of the most important embryology researchers today, such as Dr. Jaap van der Wal, are convinced that “natural forces” come from outside of the embryo and generate a blueprint in the fluids of the developing embryo which guides, determines, and even teaches, the embryo how to grow. I would call these “natural forces” referred to by embryologists “the Breath of Life”, which acts through the “fluid body” of the patient, to generate a matrix, a comprehensive, living system of order which contains all the information and intelligence about growing and healing in the best possible way.

The importance of Midline

This intelligence organizes around the body’s midline, the spinal column, the central energy channel which traditional Chinese Medicine has been calling for centuries “Chong Mai,” the first extraordinary channel, from which all other channels and meridians develop during embryonic and fetal life.

In Craniosacral work, we give prime importance to sensing our own midline. The midline is an organizing principle, not only physically, but also psychologically, emotionally and spiritually. Energy medicine traditions have worked with this principle for many thousand of years. In the professional training courses I offer, I explain and show how the principle of the midline has been central to the healing practices of Native Americans, Hebrews, Chinese Medicine, and others. For example you could consider that through childhood and adulthood this midline channel organizes the deep function of two other important channels known as Ren Mai (Conception Vessel) and Du Mai (Governing Vessel), these channels have been discovered by Chinese doctors a long time ago and are considered very significant in modern day Biodynamic Craniosacral as well.

The role of the Biodynamic Craniosacral practitioner is to create the setting and conditions which are ideal for these self-healing forces to act with maximum efficacy. The practitioner does not send energy to the client or modify the client’s energy. The practitioner trusts the body’s deeper intelligence and finds ways to speak with the body intelligence, to invite it to re-emerge (through the obstructions of the traumatized or conditioned self) and function more fully for the benefit of the patients’ whole life. The practitioner basically supports and follows the “intrinsic treatment plan” which the Breath of Life has already designed especially for that person.

In many therapies, the healing happens because the practitioner works from the outside towards the inside of the patient. In the Craniosacral model, we learn to listen to and align ourselves with the inside of the patient and help the body’s intelligence come forward, towards the outside, to make the self corrections necessary to heal the body, mind and spirit of person. 

The role of Stillness

Craniosacral practice utilizes also Stillness as healing principle. In all traditions of the world the experience of Stillness has been utilized as a gateway (a portal) to connect to one’s deeper self, deeper forces and intentions.

Think of meditation practices, prayer and contemplation, they are all done in relative states of Stillness. Animals in danger often stop their normal activities and go still before evaluating what to do next, in nature when animals are wounded they try to find places where they can be as still as possible while they are healing.

Stillness has to do with letting the movement come to rest. The mind is constantly moving and projecting itself in the future, it is concerned with achieving, activity and doing. Stillness allows the physiology and the mind to listen to what is present here and now, in Stillpoint one is not concerned about “doing” but rather is present to “Being”.

There are many types and levels of Stillness. In craniosacral biodynamics we work beneficially with different aspects of Stillness. It is considered a special state were healing can take place, often patients and practitioner find that, in that state of quiet, profound wisdom and information becomes available for both the body and mind. As an internal experience, it doesn’t require always sitting or lying down without movement, but it can become also a sensation of space, peace and availability to deal with life challenges and situations.

Learning to perceive, deepen and facilitate the experience of Stillness can be important for the patient as well as the practitioners’ daily life. Stillness can help you reconnect metabolically and physiologically to the Original Matrix and the intentions of the Breath of Life.

About the Training

For the trainee, a lot of attention is placed on listening to your own inner wisdom, getting in contact with the profound workings of your own body, mind and heart. So craniosacral training and work  bring deep benefits to practitioner as well as to the client.

The basic training of Craniosacral practitioner can take from 1 to 3 years and involves receiving information, developing specific abilities, as well as becoming more mature as a human being. Some of the qualities that you can expect a normal practitioner to master at the end of a training are:

  • A capacity to create a maternal holding environment for the patient.
  • An ability to generate a field of profound safety, with qualities of empathy, clarity and attention.
  • An ability to find centeredness and inner alignment while in relationship to the client. This means the practitioner can maintain a loving neutrality of mind and not be attached to outcomes.
  • A capacity to orient to deep aspects of experience and consciousness, as well the capacity to relate to the suffering or difficulty the patient is experiencing.
  • An ability to perceive and listen to all the dimensions of the various rhythms of the Breath of Life.
  • An ability to settle into deeper and deeper states of centeredness and stillness.
  • A profound understanding of the conditions necessary for healing, health and happiness to emerge, for the patient as well as the practitioner.

These abilities, together with a basic body of knowledge of anatomy, physiology and psychology give the Craniosacral Practitioner an ability to be useful in many of settings: dentist office, healing clinic, hospital, school, private studio, beauty salon, counselling office, gym, family, work environment, emergencies, just to give a few examples.

The training courses are designed to teach students that begin with no knowledge or experience in healing, meditation, anatomy and physiology. The course curriculum allows a lot of time to develop sensory awareness and exploring freely the different aspects of consciousness. Often the same lesson will be presented different times during the training from different perspectives and points of view. Our proven methodology allows for different speeds of maturation in the learning process as well as space for resolving difficulties, insecurities and the challenges which naturally come up.

I really hope that you will have a chance to experience this wonderful form of treatment and share it with the people around you to make life a healthier, happier and holier place.


Paolo B. Casartelli