The back is made up of many muscles, but when we speak of back pain, we usually speak about the spine. The spinal column is a stacking of 33 vertebrae, distributed as follows: cervical, dorsal, lumbar and sacral. The following description of back pain covers the areas dorsal, lumbar and sacral. Refer to COCCYX and NECK problems elsewhere in this book.


Pain or disability in the lower back (sacral region) at the base of the spine indicates fear of losing your freedom when others need your help. Your freedom is "sacred." Often enough, you fear for your own survival.

Pain and discomfort from the fifth lumbar vertebra (the lower back) to the eleventh DORSAL vertebra (waist) denotes fear of material loss. The back provides the greatest support for the physical body; therefore, any back problem indicates that you don't feel enough support. The lower back is connected to the having in your life (having a home, money, a spouse, children, a good job, a diploma, etc.). You believe you must have it all in order to feel supported, but you don't want to admit this to yourself or others. You want to do everything by yourself. You also tend to be very active because you think that it is the best way to have things.

Upper back pain (from the tenth dorsal vertebra (the waist) to the cervical, or neck area) represents emotional insecurity. Doing is very important to you. It's your way of showing and giving love to others. If someone does something for you, you feel loved and secure. However, your back pain might provide you the perfect excuse not to do everything for others, as you may fear that by doing too much, others won't help you anymore.

You expect a lot from others and when your expectations are not met you may feel you have a lot on your back. You have difficulty asking for help or support from others. When you do finally decide to do so and don't receive the help, you feel ‘stuck' and your back worsens.

Upper back pain could also mean that you feel somebody is watching you, that they're on your back all the time.


Pain in the lower back: stop believing that by helping others you will lose your freedom. Acknowledge your limitations and express them to others. Remember, you reap what you sow; if you want to reap help, you have to have sown it in the past. You may begin to realize that you are afraid that others will not be there for you or that they might take advantage of you as before. These fears keep you from giving, which consequently prevent you from receiving. If you feel your survival is at stake, realize that it is simply your emotional dependence that generates this fear and keeps you from believing that you can't survive alone. You have all the tools to take care of yourself.

Pain in the lumbar region indicates a need to accept that it is all right to need and love material things or whatever it takes to feel secure and supported. You have to allow yourself these things if you one day want to feel secure without them.

Instead of feeling that no one cares about what you want, I suggest you start voicing your requests - knowing, however, that others are under no obligation to acquiesce. They might not understand your needs the way you do. What is important to you may be of no importance to them. If you give yourself the right to need certain things, it will be easier for you to explain these needs to others.

To relieve pain in your upper back and neck, stop believing that you need to expend your energies to ensure others' happiness. When you want to give to others, give purely for the pleasure of giving. You don't need to be the emotional support for anyone.

Realize, also, that others don't have to do everything in order for you to be happy. It's not that they don't care about you they are merely focusing on what is important to them. Voice your needs by telling them that you realize you still need them to do things for you in order for you to feel their love but that one day you won't need that kind of love anymore because you will love yourself enough.

Learn to be happy

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