Wednesday, 26 September 2012

the heart and art of being a human being xxx

''it's all a sukha dukha rollercoaster!!''

i love that phrase, courtesy of one of my darling yogini friends, it basically means, a ride of both the uplifting sweetly delightful (sukha) up moments as well as the unpleasant suffering (dukha) down moments too!...

this last weekend, as the seasons shift of the cyclical year marked the autumn equinox, i attended a weekend long dance workshop lead by the softly souled andrew holmes, which was all about the landscape of the heart...we were exploring this realm of feelings, namely, fear, anger, sadness, joy and know, just the usual human range of emotions :-)

the rollercoaster analogy served me well as the dance opened the doorways to delve deep into the hues and timbre of each of these feelings and their corresponding presence in the texture of my much was learned, felt, uncovered and discovered and like the proverbial accordion, time will open out and reveal further insights

however i was struck by something that permeated through the weekends diving...the echo of which whispers its way through the weave of all my beloved practices, whether yoga, meditation, art making, writing or dance...and it's this: 

that everything we experience, all that we feel, is simply a colour and pattern of energy that momentarily wishes to move through us...if we allow it to, it shifts and changes into something else; if we resist it or deny it, or get soo fixated upon it, then it gets stuck, cant move for love nor toffee, its presence overstaying its welcome and creating a possible distortion of the pathways within us...a bit like a traffic jam (is it just me that is fascinated by how traffic jams begin?? is it really the fault of one slow rolling vehicle that a few miles trailing creates a startling out of proportional backlog of barely moving traffic???!! does anyone actually even care???!!!!)...anyways i digress!

so...the point seems to be, whatever we feel, requires us to meet it with a sense of curiousity, acknowledgement and kindness...if we soften into it, breathe into its offerings, treating it like a welcome guest, then we allow it to almost use our body as a stage...a space for it to express itself, perhaps wordlessly, with its own innate choreographer, showing us the greatest performance of soul with us as front seat ticket holders!! in giving what we feel space, and allowing this space to grow from the core of the feeling, out to our fingers and toes, and ultimately beyond our very physicality into the world around us, we become a host, a body almost possessed by the pure spirit of the particular is through the expression of this energy, that nothing can get stuck, or outstay its welcome!

this is what always amazes me post yoga practice..when once more connected and engaged i feel the vitality of my being right at the edges of my self...its when i feel that those edges have expanded even further, that i am not simply this blessed physical corpus, but that my essence expands further and beyond the realms of my edges...holding onto feelings, through shame, guilt, self consciousness or other tricky demons of doubt, denies our very humanness, and in a way stops us from offering ourselves, all of ourselves, to life!

i was struck at the weekend, when having the gracious priviledge of witnessing others dance and express each of these emotions, how we all show these human feelings of the heart in such different ways, and how mesmerizingly beautiful and touching that was to my lovelies...dont hide away how you feel, dont stop showing others your hearts silent murmurs and cave deep you offer yourself, you become art, a vessel of spirit, and in that raw vulnerable place of saying 'this is me', we get to wow in wonder at the beauty of your soul



Wednesday, 5 September 2012

...gotta have faith ffaith ffaith! (tell em george!!)

welcome to the time of the year for letting go dear ones...the first harvesting, the time for re-assessment, and the brave acknowledgment of where, just maybe, we are getting in the way of it all goddamit!!!...a leap into the unknown, dropping the old mind, the old ways, and shaking things loose, all clears us ready to be filled anew for the journey towards the dark of the year :-)

the following quote, by the ever wise, ever inspiring pema chodron, has captured my attention this week and has been resonating and vibrating its wisdom through my bones...

''By not knowing, not hoping to know and not acting like we know what's happening, we begin to access our inner strength''

hmmm...not knowing hey?!...interesting as i have found that over the last few months a certain thought has been playing on repeat like a scratched vinyl record in my mind...''how do i do it!!''..or sometimes its cousin chimes in...''i dont know how to do it!!''...the key being the word 'how', and the belief that somehow it's 'i' that needs to, well, 'do it!' (whatever it is..lets say for arguements sake we will call 'it', 'life itself'), armed ready and willing to step deeper into the dance of life i feel like i stall at the first see, as many of you might relate, i am one of those folk that, you might say, has the tiniest issue with being in control...i mean ever so slightly of course, needing everything and everyone to fit into my vision of how it should be!...i seem to hold this cherished idea of how life should be, what happens next, how you must behave, and woe betide if plans dont match mine!!...dont get me wrong, im no tyrant (at least i dont think i am and i am pretty sure that someone might have sat me down and pointed that out if so), but my need to control all aspects of my life means i need to 'know', when, why, what fact the whole damn gamut!! see the more i am in control, the more, i have always believed, i am 'safe' and secure from the uncertainties of life..those ghastly uncertainties that can truly mess up a chica's best made clipboard holding plans!!...gulp!

what i realise recently, and this came to me quite starkly in a recent meditation, is that by needing to know and control pretty much every aspect of my life doesnt leave any space for the magic, mystery and manifestation to appear..none...nada...zilch...gulp again!!...and in fact, its exactly these uncertainties that hold the key to life's mystery, magic and...erm...manifestations!, all those years of holding on tightly and putting everything into a box marked 'this is how it should be', has meant narrowing the tunnel of life's flow, just letting a trickle through, when a whole goddamn ocean of myriad delights has been passing me by!...bummer!!

not knowing hey?...shit thats scary!

you see, my old way had its reasoning folk...if i knew exactly how it was going to be then i could 'protect' myself...i could support myself and ensure that the troublesome experience of an unpredictable life couldnt hurt me, or disappoint me...and yet though this may be true i was in fact living in a separate little bubble...disconnected and certainly not deeply in relationship to life (which ironically i have been seeking and yearning for for many years) see, its this relationship to life, when we get outta the way of 'knowing' how it should be, tho filled with uncertainty, hurt, disappointment and chaos, also holds deep joy, love, connection, and the richness of human vulnerable engagement...its a whole spectrum of colours!

which brings me to the key 'friend' here...that as we drop a little more, putting down the clipboard, the plans, the 'how to's' and 'know hows', emptying our hands, unburdening our shoulders, hearts and mind, and offering ourselves into the spacious chasm of the gateway marked '??'...reach out your hand and ask for all the old false foundations of 'safety' come falling down, hold her hand tight and feel her support...we wont crumble and disappear...we cant lose ourselves if we feel our feet n bellies n heart...and we cant get lost if we ask her to guide and hold is our friend and the hand to rest into as we head out far far beyond the gateway marked 'unknown' xxx

as mister george michael said in one of his 80's moments
'i gotta have faith...!'
Finally I leave you with the words of rumi…a reminder of how to respond to life from a place of faith and not knowing xxx
‘sell your cleverness, and buy bewilderment’
Ho! x