Maybe you feel current events hitting you like a ton of bricks, the rage of injustice deeply stirred. Yet again. Maybe the news propels you into a morass of numbness. Sinking into safe folds of oblivion. Yet again. Maybe your belly contracts in anxiety, new fear heaped upon the old fear. Yet again. Some of us waft into confusion as chaos comes calling. Others put the brakes on wherever control is feasible. Yet again. Yet again. Yet again.
How much can we take? We are finding out. How are you doing? A tidbit of an answer to that question arose in practice Sunday as I investigated an imaginary line. All the way at one end? Relative ease dancing the insular space of fierce mama bear, protect-ress of everything me and mine. No matter what. At the other end of my imaginary line? My bigger self reigned, moved magnanimously with inclusivity, embracing it all. Compassion arising for all sentient beings, desire for every one of us to be safe, for all beings to live free of fear and thrive.
Then that elusive place in the center, equanimity required to hold little me and big me all at once. A place that smacks of mature wisdom. If we allow our awareness to expand, become less caught up in what magnetizes our attention…well, maybe we are all juggling this polarity right now. With varying degrees of success.
How can we possibly hold all that is coming at us with so much force and speed and urgency without retreating into insulation? Even in my relatively easy circumstances, I suffer days of battered exhaustion, barely making it through. Last week…the gift of a random respite, a privileged opportunity to completely rest three days—no news, no screens, tender companionship, good food. And, most importantly, total balm of Mother Nature: endless expanse of sky and trees and sea.
“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, ‘This is what it is to be happy.’” – Sylvia Plath
On return, I breathed into the latest horrid news cycle, let it completely sink in: déjà vu frustration of injustice, self-preservative need for calculated caution, clear tracking eye on my tendency toward numbness, judgment, confusion, control. Way too awake to be seduced by any one of these old habits. Compassion arising again and again with each barrage of information. Buoyed by my bond to the natural world, for a brief moment, I hold this middle ground, my insular needs optimally balanced by my desire to include it all. To witness, to be in right action, to offer perspective and holding, patience and trust, space for unfolding.
And Saturday morning I returned to the bounty of outdoors again, holding six of us in a yoga practice beneath a grove of redwoods. We began by burrowing fingers deep in green grass, searching for four leaf clovers. There it was again—this palpable nervous system downshift via connection with the natural world. I am so called to open us all to this resource right now. We have been cooped up, loves.
So, because we can, because the times urgently call for it, we switched things up for Wednesday Waves. This Wednesday June 3 we begin a 5 week series to renew our ability to resource the natural world. You could put headphones on and practice outdoors. But inside or out, this dance is an embodied instinct boost no matter where you are. We start an hour earlier at 5:15; sign up for the series or drop into any one.
Bones and earth; beat and fire and passion; water and blood, tears and sweat; breath, air, wind. Orienting to direction—bodies front, side, backs. Father Sky, Mother Earth, Sacred Center. Feel into your practice space. Do you know in what direction East lies? Find out now and join us Wednesday on this most natural of journeys, our animal bodies in motion….together.
And I’ll be leading practice from my backyard for this Tuesday’s Essentials…maybe you want to see if you can find an outdoor space, too. This is the new web link where you can register for all of June or enroll to drop in any one Tuesday….fostering animal bodies supple and toned.
No matter where you are today, notice the trajectory of the sun in its journey east to west. Our planet keeps spinning toward Summer Solstice, heedless of humanity in wild evolution, barely touched by our little lives in flux. I feel this star coming front and center in my life, long days shining with light, warmth and nourishment. Let’s call in the seasonal change together.
Physically distanced, spiritually & socially connected…..