This is a follow up to my last blog. Right now I am writing this newsletter from North Western Ontario, where I am busy preparing for Fall offerings, taking in the great northern energy, swimming in the most wonderful clear lakes, and supporting my family through a challenging illness. There’s nothing like cancer to bring up fear, pain, worry and stress. I know I am not the only one who has had a family member or friend go through something like this, and I am amazed by the support I have received from loving friends and comrades. But every day is hard.
Not knowing what is going to happen next. Being in the void, the mystery, trying to stay present and feel everything without pushing anything anyway. I am finding that the practice of being present and coming back to the breath is sustaining through the difficult moments.
Yoga teaches us to be Present, to lean in to a situation or experience rather than away from it. There is no way out, but through. I am forever grateful for the teachings of Yoga, both on the mat and out in the great experience of Life. Yoga reminds me to come home to the Present, through the breath, through the body, and with compassion. Within the present moment lives wisdom and clarity. This Moment is the perfect teacher.
Pema Chodron says it well…
“…feelings like disappointment, embarrassment, irritation, resentment, anger, jealousy, and fear, instead of being bad news, are actually very clear moments that teach us where it is that we’re holding back. They teach us to perk up and lean in when we feel we’d rather collapse and back away. They’re like messengers that show us, with terrifying clarity, exactly where we’re stuck. This very moment is the perfect teacher, and, lucky for us, it’s with us wherever we are.”
― Pema Chödrön
She wrote one of the recommended books for the upcoming Yoga Teacher Training, which has been an inspiration for me during this difficult time.
See my previous most recent blog post for some further musings on the deeper teachings of Yoga.
Try this: A Meditation for Feeling Into the Present with Compassion…
Lie down in a comfortable position, if possible right on the soft earth.
Allow your eyes to be softly closed and relax the face.
Give the weight of the body over to the Earth. Imagine yourself being completely accepted and held by the Earth.
Feel a wave of relaxation flow all the way from the crown of your head to the tips of your fingers and toes.
Simply notice the sensation of the breath.
From this breath, focus your awareness, and relax into the experience of just being here, as you are, opening up to whatever feelings and sensations arise, with compassion.
If your attention wanders, let the breath bring you back, again and again, and again…..