‘I make sure I often clear my mind’

Durk (76) I have had vascular dementia since 2014. During this time I have consistently followed the advice given in this book. When I was diagnosed I was naturally not happy but I am pragmatic and asked the doctor: ‘Is there anything I can do about it?’ The bluntness of the answer shocked me: ‘There is nothing you can do about it. Just living a healthy life is the best you can do’. Fortunately, I already knew Marieke de Vrij. Her specific advice gave me hope and courage: something can be done about it and it is a meaningful process.

The name exercise

Meditating in connection with your body and your name

The exercise consists of four parts:

1. Relaxing your body
2. Planting the word ‘I’ in your body (I-resonance)
3. Inviting and establishing your name in your body (I+ name-resonance)
4. Completing the exercise

 

1. Relaxing your body

Sit quietly and close your eyes.
(…..)
(…..)
Mindfully place your feet on the floor beneath you and let them sink into it, as it were. That way your energy can flow. Let your attention move to the soles of the feet and allow them to relax.

(…..)

Straighten your back and your neck, so the crown of your head rises, without forcing anything.

(…..)

Loosely place your hand palms on your belly, under your belly button. Breathe peacefully towards your hand palms.

(…..)

Release the tip of your tongue from the roof of your mouth. Allow the tongue to relax with every breath, until it rests passively in the lower jaw. That way you let go of mental activity, and it is easier to feel your body.

(…..)

Relax the entire jaw area, your neck and shoulders.

(…..)

Slow your breathing, your in-breath and your out-breath, and fill your body with silence.

(…..)

2. I-resonance (planting the word ‘I’ in and around your body)

Let the word ‘I’ rise naturally from within. Let it resonate in silence throughout your whole body: from your toes to the crown of your head, and from the crown of your head to the soles of your feet and the palms of your hands. Take your time doing this. Repeat the word ‘I’, until you feel it resonate in all parts of your body.

(…..)

Then, radiate the word ‘I’ outwards, until it fills your aura, the energy field around your body (…..)

3. I + name-resonance (establishing the word ‘I’ and your name in and around your body)

Now let your name well up, without thinking about it, and place it after the word I. It can be your first name, your first and last name, whatever feels right. Don’t think about this, allow the names to arise naturally.

(..…)

Let the word I + your name resonate throughout your body from your toes to the crown of your head, and from the crown of your head to the hand palms and the soles of the feet. Take your time for this journey through your body. Do it until you feel your whole body, including your bones and organs are saturated with the word ‘I’ and your name.

(.…)

In that moment you are completely present in your body and strengthened in your natural beingness.

(…..)

4. Completing the exercise

Keep breathing naturally
Move your fingertips and toes
Open your eyes, and come back to the present moment, in the place where you are.

Practice this exercise regularly. You will notice how healing it is.

 

‘I wish I had known this book before’

Marleen (67) Over the last 30 years I have experienced the dementia process of a number of family members at close quarters. I have personally felt many of the insights and experiences set out in this book, without always understanding them properly, let alone finding the right words for them.

Is there life after the diagnosis of dementia? Yes there is. Marieke shines her light on the effect of the exercises on people like Durk. 

Spread the word and share the book
We would like for everyone to be able to read, learn and talk about this book and exercises. And even more important: to benefit from its insights and wisdom. That is our passionate dream. So please, feel free to share this with all who can benefit, who work in the field, family and friends of people with dementia. In a nutshell: everybody. Spread the word. Thanks!

Help us to do the work
We are very happy that we can offer you this book and exercises for free. We dream of doing more research. Check out our plans for research. If you want to support our work, feel free to make a donation! It is very much appreciated. We feel it is also important for you to know that all donations are explicitly spend on bringing new inspirations into the world, we hope to stimulate growing awareness, so you can become your full potential and serve the world. Thank you!

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