To define Alexander Technique is not very easy because it escapes the usual classification of .... (of what, that is the question: it heals but is not an healing method, it operates on the body but refuses to see the separation of body and mind, in fact it does not even see the need to join mind and body, since its holistic approach does not for one second consider any kind of separation between the two).
Like many "processes" which involve personal growth of some form it is very difficult to explain it to someone who has not gone through the "experience".
One might also say that each person who went through the "experience"s developed different concepts and interpretations but some aspects should be the same, or not?
I think the main concepts of Alexander Technique involve very simple and basic ideas which can be expressed in very simple words.
The difficulty in describing those basic things in simple words is that like all basic ideas and simple words, these are loaded with implicit meanings given by the culture, society and times we live in.
Anyway, however difficult it may be to do it with few words I refuse to continue answering "What is A.T.?" with something starting with "So many years ago Mr. X had this problem and ..."
Regardles of the value of the work of Mr. X (F.M. Alexander), that is not the appropriate way to answer such a question.
If we think of the known formula 4W+1H (what, who, where, when, how) answering the question "What is A.T.?" with the history of what F.M. Alexander did is equivalent to avoiding a direct reply to the "what" by feeding a lot of facts about "who, where, when, how". And in the process getting the listener so numb that he no longer knows what he asked about (as most readers by now will be...)
Please send any comments to António Guerreiro. Last updated on 14.04.2004.