Now that you’ve brought this new healing modality known as Belly Button Healing into your awareness, you’re probably thinking to yourself, “Okay, so how do I actually do it?” In this article, we’ll cover the primary techniques of Belly Button Healing, as New York Times bestselling author Ilchi Lee teaches in his cutting-edge book, Belly Button Healing: Unlocking Your Second Brain for a Healthy Life.
The beauty of Belly Button Healing is that it’s so simple and easy to do. This is a form of healing that’s accessible to everyone. Unlike yoga and tai chi, or other forms of exercise and energetic bodywork that combine the body, the breath, and the spirit, Belly Button Healing can be done even if you’re not able to physically move your body much. If you have a condition or injury that prevents you from doing any kind of strenuous activity, if you’re confined to a hospital bed, a wheelchair, or just stuck in an airplane seat as you cross the Pacific, Belly Button Healing is perfect for you because it can be done sitting or lying down. All you need are your healing hands, an open mind, and an open heart. Oh yeah—and a belly button!
The techniques involved in Belly Button Healing are taught as a form of self-healing, as they’re incredibly easy (and even fun) to do on yourself, and also as a mode of healing others. Performing the techniques on your loved ones fosters connection and loving bonds. And of course, it’s just nice sometimes to relax and enjoy the pleasure that comes when someone else takes the time and attention to nurture and nourish you.
Before you begin, you’ll want to center yourself and bring into your consciousness these words: “The hands are enhanced with healing energy when the healer has a sincere compassion for the receiver, a desire for their quick recovery, and a sincere wish for their improved health. Even when you heal yourself, if you press and massage your body with a caring heart and with gratitude for how precious it is, your body responds to that energy of love. Love is medicine. Love makes healing hands, and love increases the body’s self-healing capacity.” (Excerpt from Belly Button Healing: Unlocking Your Second Brain for a Healthy Life,” by Ilchi Lee.)
In addition to coming from a place of love as you practice self-healing or bring your healing hands to others, you’ll want to get grounded in the firm belief that your body has the capacity to heal itself. This isn’t just mumbo jumbo stuff. For thousands of years, the ancients have known of the body’s innate ability to heal, and even now, science shows us that we do indeed have self-healing mechanisms within the body. They just need to be activated, and Belly Button Healing is one way of setting these natural healing mechanisms into motion.
The primary technique is to simply tap on your belly button with your fingers. By first placing your pointer fingers, middle fingers, and ring fingers together, you then take both hands to stimulate the navel through a repetitive pressing motion. This is the technique Ilchi Lee calls, “Belly Button Breathing.” Belly Button Breathing is the first step, and it should be done with clean hands and ideally on an empty stomach.
There’s also a specialized tool called a healing wand, which you can look into as you delve deeper into the practice. To begin, however, you just need your hands. Here’s how to do Belly Button Breathing:
Seat yourself in a chair, or lie down somewhere comfortable. Take a few moments to allow your body to relax and release tension wherever you feel it. Take a few deep breaths to relax further. Now, rub your hand around your tummy in a clockwise direction. This circling of the belly button sets the tone and eases you into the practice. Next, press down repetitively on your belly button with the three middle fingertips of both hands. If you have a Belly Button Healing Wand, you’ll use that instead. Do this in a relaxed, rhythmical, and mindful manner.
The breathing part of this pressing exercise comes in by exhaling in short breaths through your mouth or nose as you press repetitively on your navel. It’s a breath not unlike “breath of fire” for yogis or that short, sharp breath utilized in Pilates. You emphasize the exhale and the inhales come naturally.
Tap 100 to 300 times in one sequence, which takes just a couple minutes. Belly Button Healing works better when it’s done in short bursts throughout the day, rather than one long healing practice.
Upon finishing the Belly Button Breathing technique, take a few minutes to pay attention to your body while breathing comfortably. In your mind’s eye, see the life force energy coming into your center through your belly button. Sense into this energy and allow any and all sensations to arise. If there’s tingling, cold releasing, or a feeling of warmth that spreads from your core to your entire body, just be present with it. When you’re ready, open your eyes and thank yourself for the time, care and attention you’ve just given to yourself. Self-healing is a responsible act. It’s not selfish, rather, it’s one that we need more of today’s fast-paced environment.
The next step is what’s referred to as the “Self Belly Button Massage.” Yet another simple practice, this one entails the exploration of various points around the belly button that correspond to other areas of the body—a lot like acupuncture and acupressure. Again, you can do this with your hands or the healing wand.
As you did with “Belly Button Breathing, sit down or lie down and get comfortable. Take some deep breaths to release tension. Do that clockwise rubbing action that you did before, and set an intention for self-healing. Next, think of your abdomen as being divided into eight parts—like a pie chart. Take your thumb (or the thinnest tip of the healing wand), and gently press down and massage in a clockwise direction each of the eight parts. If you find points of pain, you’ll gently press with that circular motion ten times, continuing until the discomfort is released. Now simply rest and relax, paying attention to how you feel—with self-compassion and patient presence. When you’re ready, sit up and go about your day.
As you can see, the two primary Belly Button Healing techniques are accessible to anyone and everyone. To delve deeper into the practice, check out Ilchi Lee’s Belly Button Healing: Unlocking Your Second Brain for a Healthy Life.