Welcome to Alaya Retreat Centre

Interview with our Chiro masseur, Hernan

It was a Tuesday evening when I met Hernan. The first time I met him was at his therapy space in Alaya Retreat Centre for a massage and afterwards he agreed to allow me to interview him. When he greeted me at the door I burst open with excitement. His eyes dazzled and he wore a light blue crystal around his neck that invited me in to embrace him.

“Hi. Welcome.” He cheered. He was incredibly warm and I instantly felt grounded in his presence. He offered me a cup of tea, invited me to relax in the space and then talked to me for a little while.

I left all my own questions until after the massage. In fact, it was while I was towards the end of the massage that all my questions came flooding in. I couldn’t imagine how this young man held such quality in the way he delivered his massage. I felt as if an ancient masseus was working deeply through the exact layers that needed working.

Thankfully at the end of the massage I was quickly revived and spritely brought back to the room. It was then that he placed some crystals on my body to bring me back.

“That was amazing. How did you get into massage in the first place?” I asked as I propped myself into a chair.

“It runs in my family and I’ve been giving and receiving massage for as long as I can remember. Now I´m 32 but I’ve always felt the need to touch. I’m very sensitive and sometimes feel words are too short to use to communicate. Sometimes I don’t know what to say to people but I get a feeling that I want to share and connect with them. Massage gives me a beautiful way to communicate.”

I felt Hernan a very wise and conscious man. He was also very open and continued to tell me about this lifelong journey with massage.

“Although I started knowing about massage as a child, for a long time, it was a part of myself that I kept hidden. I was actually an engineering consultant for most of my professional life and was very logical. I had a good job, was travelling and making money but always felt something was missing. Eventually I found myself in a healing community in Chile and had the opportunity to check in with myself and discovered that I wanted to express myself more in other ways. I wanted to write and dance and sing and touch. I decided that’s what I’d do so went around giving my friends and family massages. That’s really where I reconnected to the masseus part of myself.” He told me.

“So you just started doing massage to make you happy?” I asked, awe inspired by the way his journey began.

“More or less that’s how it started. I was just sharing my happiness with people but I realised that that happiness went full circle and that people loved to be touched. They always gave such special feedback. Some people would tell me they felt wonderful after the massage. Others would say they felt renewed the day after the massage and then more esoteric people would tell me that I had a special gift with my hands.” He told me.

“When did you decide to take this gift more seriously?” I probed.

“It was a couple of years ago when I decided to take some time out from the office. I went through my life and decided it was time to start pondering the different ideas I had to gain a better quality of life by connecting more to myself and others. I made a list of all the possible options. Ironically massage was not on the list. Then one day, I woke up and decided that I would do a course in Chiro Massage.” He told me and laughed.

“So do you think it’s a sort of calling, what with all these interesting ways massage talks to you?” I asked sincerely.

“I don’t know if it’s a calling but I do remember having moments of sadness while I was in my other professional career for not giving anything special to the world. I now feel I’ve fixed that by giving massages. I think I had to get through some layers of my ego that blocked me going deeper into this journey. For example judgements and stories I told myself about massage. But massage is definitely my path. It’s where I am and where I’m going. I’m open to practicing new techniques but the biggest part of this journey is to try new things, follow my instinct and know that there’s something good in this and to let it grow.” He added, humbly yet admirably.

“How does this massage differ from others?” I asked

“We use chiro massage to manipulate the body’s nervous system, especially the spine and bones. It helps correct a misalignment so that the nerves can better send signals to and from the brain and organs. I use three types of massage. One that is very soft and relaxing and works to reduce stress. The other is more therapeutic where we use our elbows to go deeper into the massage. This helps to break fibers so the energy of the body can help it heal. Then there’s a very deep massage which is used for sports injuries.” He added.

“Do you ever give yourself a massage?” I asked, enviable of his self-healing abilities.

“Always. In our bodies we have trigger points. Most of them are between the ligaments and the bone and it’s where we hold emotions. I love to massage myself and release all these emotions.” Hernan added.

“What do you like the most about being a masseur?” I finished.

“I found that by doing something for others, you’re doing it for you. I like the concept of unlimited and free energy. I actually feel energised by giving massages and realised that it supports the idea of oneness. If we give to others we give to ourselves. I don’t believe in a selfish universe.” He said with a glowing smile.

I liked Hernan and his chiro massages. They made me feel healthier and happier so I suppose he was onto a good thing with what he tells us about service.

If you’d like to connect to Hernan yourself, you can find him here at Alaya Retreat Centre. Just ask at reception.

With love

Anneka Lott

(on behalf of Alaya Retreat centre)

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