First of Nine: Tensegrity Blog

Portland, Oregon's Cancer Survivorship and Bodywork Zine by Compassion Arts PDX, LLC

Taking Care Portland at TaborSpace: Sunday, August 11th, 2013!


Born out of a Portlandia episode? Taking Care Portland is bringing group acupuncture, community bodywork and live, improvised sound therapy in the same room!

So, there’s a Portlandia skit, where a lass is receiving acupuncture. The needles are in and she is “cooking” as my acupuncture chums call it. Carrie has a guitar and Fred is in front of a keyboard, all slicked up in black. Just as the dear woman is finding a moment’s peace, they break out into a racket and jar her from her bliss. Freaking hilarious!

The Taking Care Sound Tribe brings a slightly different approach to sound therapy. The local musical community has discussions around wavelength, vibration; the physics of sound. We grok on Mitchell Gaynor, MD’s work with sound healing. He writes about the vibration of Tibetan singing bowls reaching every cell in the human body.

According to a display at OMSI, our first sounds heard in the womb are the mother’s heartbeat, rushing blood and rumbling stomach. Improvised music crackles the expressive, communicative centers of the brain. We use sound to sway the autonomic nervous system towards the parasympathetic…. Towards rest…. Towards rejuvenation.

The Taking Care Sound Tribe includes Marcia Muench, Steve Frost and Hamid Shibata Bennett, LMT, CAMT. We weave a story into the healing journey, circling through a community space filled with folks receiving massage therapy and acupuncture.

I gotta say, it’s the coolest thing to step softly towards the acupuncture needles with a Tibetan singing bowl singing and seeing those needles shimmy.

We use other instruments too, ranging from guitar and violin to shakuhachi to drum to voice to gong. A forty-five minute respite from the harried world. We’ve been receiving lovely feedback about the music. Our massage therapists and acupuncturists sure love offering their work with live music. They keep returning every quarter to share their healing gifts with the community.

We’re all volunteering our time. And, we’d like to do more. We’re making connections with cancer survivorship programs nationwide.

Locally, we’re networking with farmers and oncologists, licensed massage therapists, acupuncturists, professional musicians and more! The discussion around integrative oncology goes beyond the hospital and clinic setting and into your neighborhood.

We’ll be playing at at TaborSpace on the cozy end of southeast Belmont in Portland, Oregon. We’ve got friends in Boise and rural Oregon that would love to host us too. It costs time and money to put on these events. We ask for your donations to keep us growing! Your donations will go towards space rental, food costs and all the other expenses of putting on an event.

You are invited to Taking Care Portland, Sunday, August 11th. We have two sessions available. You can sign up for either massage therapy or acupuncture in the sound therapy room. Everyone will be guided in a rooted movement meditation facilitated by Aaron Gustafson, LMT, CAMT II.

Taking Care Portland takes a food is medicine approach to cancer survivorship. All are invited to a beautiful early supper made from local, organic, farm-direct produce, donated by Maryhill Farms. Daniel Miller will be cooking up a storm. Here’s a sneak peak at the menu: Mixed local lettuce in a grilled peach vinaigrette, sweet corn, zucchini and maitake mushroom succotash and tomato, basil poached cod filet over turmeric dusted brown rice. Proper eats!

We’ll also have Dr. Ken Weizer of Providence Cancer Center come educate us about the naturopaths role in integrative oncology. Check out Dr. Weizer’s website!

Did I mention we have a chocolatier? Missionary Chocolates will be serving up their fine confections. And, the awesome crew at WebLively will be handling the technology side of checking in practitioners and guests.

Please be our guest and join us Sunday, August 11th, 2013 at TaborSpace in Portland, Oregon! Please donate what you can afford so we can keep bringing good vibes to our community! The suggested minimum donation is $25.

To register as a guest or to learn more, please go to


The Portlandia Facebook page recently posted a new meme….Thought this was right up our alley.


The Taking Care Portland Portlandia meme!


-Hamid : )

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Compassion Arts PDX, LLC

Hamid Shibata Bennett, LMT, CAMT (OBMT #301)
Advanced massage therapy and bodywork
3810 SE Belmont ST
Portland, Oregon 97214

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