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In a world where instantaneity rules many aspects of life, two things continue to elude most people: good health and peace of mind. The latter is especially important since the state of our mind and soul often affects and influences our physical health. Although mental health should be among the top priorities, sometimes it takes a back seat due to the many responsibilities at work and home. With the coronavirus pandemic slowing down the pace of life, many are looking for ways to improve their overall quality of life. Some popular classes from Irmansyah Effendi’s health and well-being programmes at his Natural Way of Living organization are Secrets of Natural Walking® (Natural Walking), or Rahasia Berjalan Alami® (RBA) in Bahasa Indonesia, and Open Heart Meditation®.

“Close your eyes and relax, smile and touch your heart at the centre of your chest. Let the love and blessing of The Creator touch your heart and fill you with peace and calmness,” Effendi says during a virtual Open Heart Meditation session. Afterwards, he talks to us about the key to our relationship with The Creator by opening our heart. “Without opening our heart, we cannot experience The Creator’s infinite love completely. Only after opening our heart, our relationship with the Creator is no longer just our faith. We can clearly experience direct love from the Creator for us touching, enveloping, guiding and helping us at every moment.”

His universal meditation method is distinct from others since Effendi does not teach participants to focus on one particular object during meditation. “I guide people to connect to their hearts and to rely on their direct connection with the Creator instead of relying on their effort,” he says. Meanwhile, at his Secrets of Natural Walking class, practitioners are taught that walking is not only a means to get from one place to another. Walking is the most natural way to reactivate our body’s natural healing abilities. “How you walk has a tremendous effect on your body and mind. After years of observation, I found out that the way you walk affects your body shape, health, emotional well-being, and the body’s capability to heal itself.

897ed43e-bd30-41e4-8f74-b0e098e245de.jpgIrmansyah Effendi used to do many classes and events for RBA and Heart- Opening meditation; today, they are all shifting virtually

He believes that the human body can heal itself. However, most people do not use their body correctly and, instead, force and pressure their bodies. Consequently, the internal organs become prone to illnesses, and the body’s self-healing capability is suppressed. For that reason, in Effendi’s Natural Walking exercises, practitioners are taught to let their body function naturally. “In other types of exercise, you force your body to do things. Those methods have their benefits, of course, but also adverse effects,” he says. “With Natural Walking, I do not teach practitioners to control their body. Instead, I teach them

to let go of control.” There are ten thousands of Natural Walking practitioners worldwide, including those in their golden years. They have reported significant improvements and immediate relief of spinal and posture problems, joint pains and bone-related issues, and internal organ ailments.

More than 150 certified instructors lead Natural Walking workshops in small groups and at the Natural Walking Centres around the world, both virtually and in person, where practitioners meet and practice three to four times a week. Alongside his Natural Walking, he also teaches Open Heart Meditation as two separate practices that go hand in hand. “In my practice, the underlying principle that I teach is to open their heart and listen to their own body,” he says. Rani Anggraini Safitri is among those who have enjoyed the benefits of both the Natural Walking class and Open Heart Meditation.

a110d063-0b2c-4a69-a332-c3bca8586eb8.jpgArio Wibisono and Gunadi have equally witnessed the benefits of RBA and Heart-Opening meditation for themselves and others around them

The energetic mum, entrepreneur and philanthropist is an avid, life-long sports lover. “I have enjoyed many types of sports for my entire life. However, I have been reducing my workout after I fell off a bicycle. Since then, I did no heavy exercise due to pain in my knees,” Safitri says. ”Some of my friends have also experienced relatively severe pain similar to mine even though they have healthy daily regimes.” One of them is Ario Wibisono, the President Commissioner of Sarana Menara Nusantara.

Wibisono also suffered from a severe knee injury because of a falling accident; he had gone through several hospitals around Indonesia and Singapore to get medical treatment. “I was diagnosed with chondromalacia patellae, which means damaged cartilage on the back of my kneecap. The severity goes to the point where there was no cartilage left under my kneecap, so the bones rub against each other, and it was excruciating. I was in so much pain, so I had to be on painkillers all the time. The doctors I visited last in Singapore suggested that I go through kneecap surgery. But then I joined Effendi’s Natural Walking and Open Heart Meditation Classes.” The Natural Walking class introduces the most natural way of walking to induce self-healing.

Meanwhile, the Open Heart Meditation works in synergy with Natural Walking to experience complete rejuvenation and overall well-being improvement. “Not long after I joined the health workshop, I felt a significant change in my body and with my moods,” Safitri says. “My knees felt lighter, and I felt peaceful.” Wibisono then added his similar experience to hers. “I was at first confused on how to walk according to Effendi’s method,” Wibisono says. “But after joining two sessions, my physical conditions improved, and now I can walk up and down the stairs without any problem. Also, to my surprise, I feel a lot calmer even when situations are not on my side, which might happen quite often in business.” The Open Heart Meditation also helped  him realize that The Creator always walks alongside him no matter what; this insight, in return, has brought him peace of mind.

Agus Wicaksono, or often called Sonnie, has also experienced these benefits from joining the classes. He was once an investment banker for CIMB Niaga, who was so busy working until feeling burnout and physical exhaustion. “My emotions were always up and down, and I complained a lot about muscle stiffness every day—especially on weekends. After joining one meditation session, although I did not suffer from any physical injuries, my body feels lighter,” he says with a smile. “Moreover, it helped alleviate my sinus symptoms 21 days later. My self-control and patience also greatly increased, and my family was surprised with how well I handled my emotions.”

These uplifting stories have  equally empowered Gunadi, a fellow practitioner and instructor at Natural Way of Living. He had witnessed many good things happening to those who went through Open Heart and Natural Walking sessions. “I once had an acquaintance who was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a cancer of mature plasma cells in the bone marrow that can last for a lifetime and in need of chemotherapy,” he says. “After two weeks of classes, she consulted with her doctor and found that her red blood cell count had gone up. On the third week, the result of her scan revealed that the level of her blood cell is normal, and there was no need for chemotherapy.” With such positive results, those interested to try Secrets of Natural Walking classes and Open Heart Meditation are welcome to try the free introduction sessions at Natural Way of Living.

Let’s hear what Tatler CEO and Bureau Chief, Millie Lukito and our Tatler Friends say about the Natural Way of Living:

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Millie Stephanie Lukito
CEO and Bureau Chief

“Prevention is better than cure. When I heard about the Natural Walking method, I was curious to try as it enhances immune defences as well. After implementing the Natural Walking technique for a while, my body feels relaxed and energized; my backache was also alleviated."

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Magda Hutagalung
Entrepreneur

“I could implement the technique anywhere and anytime amid a busy schedule without needing a lot of space or specific tools. Thanks to Natural Walking, my body feels relaxed, and my mind is at peace while doing it with meditation."

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Rani Anggraini Safitri
Entrepreneur and philanthropist

“I have enjoyed many types of sports for my entire life. However, I have been reducing my workout after I fell off the bicycle. Since then, I did no heavy exercise due to pain in my knees. Not long after I joined Natural Walking, I felt a significant change in my body and with my moods. My knee felt lighter, and I felt peaceful."

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Agus “Sonnie” Wicaksono
Businessman

“My emotions were always up and down, and I complained a lot about muscle stiffness every day—especially on weekends. After joining one meditation session, although I did not suffer from any physical injuries, my body feels lighter.”

This story appears in the March 2021 issue of Indonesia Tatler. For the full story, grab the copy at your nearest newsstand, or click here to read our online magazine.