Using Your Breath to Unlock the Story Your Body Holds Vital

This story may be unconsciously blocking your vitality.

Tao Minister and mind-body strength expert Tammy Wise explains the psyche-muscular system, how our organs hold emotions, and what we can do to keep ourselves in the greatest balance. Where do we start? Just breathe.

By Tammy WiseThe Eastern understanding that a balanced body supports a balanced mind and vice-versa is now a widespread, shared belief in the West. However, we Westerners are just learning how to implement this understanding into our lives. All Tao healing arts refer to mind-body relationships held within the muscles–organs and bowels–in order to understand the nature of disease. This holistic understanding of wellbeing offers you psychological insight regarding your health and agency over your own self-care.To have the sensitivity to recognize these mind-body expressions you need to work from a place of neutrality–internal space. This inner space offers objectivity, by decompressing the habitual ways you hold yourself together and surrendering the deep-rooted defenses that keep you compressed. This inner space is known in the East as the Pregnant Void and comes from exchanging tension with breath. In traditional Tao practices, breathing into each organ with the intent to free emotions into your sensory nervous system were used in order to acknowledge, consider, release or share unresolved emotions.

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  • Heart: Joy
  • Spleen / Pancreas: Worry
  • Lungs: Sadness / Grief
  • Kidneys: Fear
  • Liver: Anger

Inspired by this, and using the principles of Tao, I have recognized the influence and analogous characteristics that emotions have on skeletal muscles and created a systematic approach to mind-body strength called BodyLogos. Every muscle group corresponds to an aspect of the self and performs specific duties in regard to your survival. When isolated in a strength-training workout, that isolated emotion is stimulated. The BodyLogos Psyche-Muscular Blueprint separates this understanding into Psyche-Muscular components. What follows are simple meditations that will unite your mind and body on a common goal as you workout, creating the alignment needed for your Spirit to awaken.


  • Abdominal Muscles: Spirit Self. As your muscular center of Gravity, challenging the abdominals is a time to focus inward on what is essentially you—to appreciate who you are now and who you are becoming.
  • Chest Muscles: Smile of Truth. Because they blanket the physical seat of your emotions, as you experience the strength of your chest, experience your heart expanding and your dreams emerging.
  • Back Muscles: Protection. As your body’s shield, back muscles give you a sense of safekeeping and courage, as well as support for gentler heartfelt expression.
  • Shoulder Muscles: Moral Values. Shoulders frame your posture. Shoulder challenges frame the values presently being affected in your life, to bring about clarity and authentic right action.
  • Biceps Muscles: Pulling Desirables Inward. Biceps’ pulling action is an occasion to ask what you need mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually to create the life you envision.
  • Triceps Muscles: Pushing Undesirables Away. While working triceps’ pushing action, integrate what you need to clear out of your life with a sense of personal responsibility and self-love.
  • Buttock Muscles: Comfort. Because of the buttocks’ strength and padding, keep the intention of buttock challenges connected to feeling comfortable with what’s “within” and accepting what’s “without.”
  • Quadriceps Muscles: Movement Forward. Motivate forward propelling quadriceps’ activity by visualizing a goal, aim, or life purpose. Feel what motivates you.
  • Hamstring Muscles: Movement Backward. Consciously use backward propelling hamstring movement as a time to reflect back on your past. Experience the past neutrally, bringing more compassion into your present and future life.
  • Inner Thigh Muscles: Movement Inward. Utilize the inward movement of your inner thighs to connect you to your center. As you move in any direction, experience their constant inward commitment to stay aligned and connected with what is authentically you.
  • Calf & Shin Muscles: Grounding & Determination. While challenging the spring-like levers of your lower legs, feel the grounded determination it takes to be your authentic self. Experience your tenacity.
  • Iliopsoas: Control. When iliopsoas muscles (hip fold) are felt, they are generally being overused in a desperate attempt to control movement (and life). Let their voice lead you back to your central support and direct the flow of strength back to your primary supporting muscles (abdominals, inner thighs, buttocks).

When isolating each muscle group, concentrate on the essence of its emotion. Allow the meditation to empower your physical abilities, while the physical action gives your mind focus. Moreover, just as in Nature, everything in your body is interconnected and every isolated action has consequences. By observing the response your entire physical body has to an isolated physical challenge, you will realize the response your entire being has to a specific emotional challenge. This is the process of uncovering unconscious muscular holding patterns.Your body is a psyche-muscular blueprint of your life story!Tammy Wise is a Tao Minister, mind-body strength expert, and founder of the BodyLogos holistic fitness method. Her writing and methodology has been widely featured in media including New York, TimeOut New York, Fitness, Shape, and Natural Health magazines. She is currently writing and producing a BodyLogos book and 3-D video system for online. Learn more about her training, holistic treatments, and products at, or follow her on Twitter at @BodyLogos.