March, 2019

Our Physical and Subtle Anatomy: Part One

physical bodies are a wonderful and grand vessel of complex and
varied capabilities. Most of the functions that sustain our life are
transparent in their process and automatic in their function. We
breathe, our heart beats, we move in coordinated and purposeful
mechanics, we feel, we think, we react. All of these physiological
components are used as vehicles of anchoring in the refinement of our
spiritual and subtle nature. We are humans in corporeal state and as
such our level of response to spiritual and energetic action is
through the vehicle of physical being. Even those experiences that we
cannot articulate or are unaware of their potency and impact move
through the state of our physical being and often become the eventual
place of manifestation.

posting will focus on the physical anatomy and in its briefest form
will offer some basic information to get us started. I am using the
elements as some additional correspondence to the form of energies I
associate with these physiological systems. There are many overlays
that can be used and some may find other attributes more relevant in
description or assignment. Formulate your own opinions and see the
analogies in whatever way you resonate most soundly with. As you work
with and through these systems over time, everything you thought you
knew about their function will change in perception and new
perspectives about how they work in collaboration with a strong
personal practice, magickal working and spiritual growth will evolve.

I am neither a healthcare professional nor a
professional scientist. The information I have pulled together is the
result of my personal experiences as both a professional dancer and
practitioner of Eastern and Western Hermetic protocols. I have read
and filled in what was needed of the basics of physiological anatomy
to gain a deeper understanding of how to make better use of the
energetic protocols and results and strongly encourage those who wish
to become more effective in their workings to do some research and
formulate their own foundation of understanding about the inner
workings of the greatest tool we have in our own spiritual
development- our physical state of being!

Flesh and Bones

Our skin, the largest organ in our body, acts as the interface between what surrounds us and how we respond at a tactile level to those surroundings. The sense of touch evokes emotional and mental reaction and the sensitivity of our skin to multiple layers of stimuli is often one of the first points of engagement we have with our world.

bones form the structure that holds in place and protects the bodies
we inhabit as corporeal and physical beings. Our bones connect us the
most deeply to the earth and the mineral life that is composite in
the formation of the planet itself. Our bones serve as the upholders
of our physical action and are the scaffolding of what is our outer
appearance and make-up.

Muscular system

muscles are responsible for movement of the bones and work in
conjunction with the brain, nerves and sensory systems. There are
three types of muscle:

Skeletal Muscles-
sheath the bones connected via tendons and are
responsible for reflex actions and giving shape and form to the

Muscles- these are found in the organs and work automatically to
ensure the continued function of their specific organ. These are
controlled by the autonomic nervous system and regulate such things
as digestion, elimination and breathing.

constantly works pumping the blood in and out of the
heart and is stimulated by the electrical impulse generated within
our body. This muscle is directly responsible for the function of the
circulatory system.


Neurological System

The nervous system is the master communicator, receiving and distributing the information received throughout our bodies and is the most complex of the physiological systems. The Central Nervous System includes the Brain and spinal cord and the Peripheral Nervous System acts to initiate changes inside and outside of the body. This information gathered is sent to the CNS and reacted upon.

is through the nerve endings in the skin that the sensorial feed-back
is transmitted to the brain. These neural networks of fibers are
often interconnected to tissue and blood vessels. Additionally, it is
through this system of communication that the development of
language, motor and thinking processes is set into motion.


Endocrine System

The endocrine system is similar to the nervous system in that it relays information and acts as a signal system. The nervous system uses blood as the conductor of the electrical impulses and the endocrine systems uses the blood vessels as the channels of transport.

The endocrine glands release specific hormones that regulate the body’s growth, metabolism, development and more. These secretions are released directly into the bloodstream, carried by the blood vessels and act upon the specific organs and their functions. These hormones are vital for the body to function optimally and grow in a productive healthy way. In spiritual practice the endocrine system is one that can be attuned to enlivening and reforming the physical body’s responses. The seven master glands act one upon the other stimulating and opening the subtle spiritual centers.


Circulatory System

Our circulatory system uses the electrical current of fire and the flow of water to maintain our life’s spark. The pumping of blood through our bodies and its transformation within the chambers of the heart and then ultimate release back into circulation throughout our bodies is a statement of efficiency in use and flow. The heart is the central core responsible for multiple functions and the related by products that keep us healthy and alive. Mind and heart have long been the components of spiritual growth and deeper understanding. The scientific parameters of the heart have shown that the heart ‘s electromagnetic field is 60 times greater than that of the brain and that it is capable of performing some brain-like functions because of the continual energetic flow between heart and brain in an exchange of cellular information.

spiritual term “Intelligence of the Heart” takes on new meaning
when we have this scientific knowledge and provokes a new way of
thinking about how our emotional and mental interactions may better
serve one another.


Respiratory System

The intake of breath is the sustainer of life. The air that moves in and through us serves to oxygenate and maintain the life force that runs as current throughout our physical form. The lungs become the great bellows expanding and contraction; response and reaction to the flow of air that is taken in and then released.

The next post will continue to move through the systems and take a look at the correlates of function of our energetic anatomy.


Emmet B. Keefe, Introduction to Know Your Body: The Atlas of Anatomy (Berkley, CA;Ulysses Press, 1999)
Cyndi Dale, The Subtle Body:An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy (Boulder, CO:Sounds True Inc., 2009)


the Author:

Fennelly is a Wiccan High Priestess, teacher, poet and author.

is the author of (click on book titles for more information):

Inner Chamber Volume One on Amazon

Written in the Stars


Inner Chamber, Vol. Two

of the Spheres (Volume 2) on Amazon


Inner Chamber, Vol. Three

the Paths on Amazon


Year With Gaia on Amazon

Eternal Cord

of the Sun and Moon on Amazon


Magickal Pen Volume One (Volume 1) on Amazon

Collection of Esoteric Writings

Elemental Year on Amazon

the Parts of SELF

Enchanted Gate on Amazon

on the Magick of the Natural World

with the Goddess on Amazon

of Devotion

Weekly Reflection on Amazon

for the Year

books are available on Amazon
on this website
her Blogs
be found at

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