vendredi 11 décembre 2015

Out Of Hopeful Green Stuff Woven

Lately, it seems, our consciousness has expanded, individually and collectively, to include many aspects and areas of the world that are deeply disturbing. (This is nothing new for some of you, I know.)

Sometimes, though, in the midst of these dark, disheartening events or situations, we can glimpse a glimmer of light and hope, through someone’s particular gesture or story; or from some inexplicable, secret source in our own heart.

To me, it is also a reminder that we are all, ultimately, connected on a deep level – beneath and beyond cultural or personal differences.

Within each of us is planted the same desire to be acknowledged and loved, to be at peace in a peaceful world. 

So these timely words from Judith Lasater, a renowned yoga teacher, truly resonated in me:

"First, we need to stop hating ourselves and start unconditionally loving ourselves.
This might take a while.
We need to give ourselves empathy. Every second.
Next, stop hating others. Stop speaking ill of others. Stop judging others.
Right here, right now, just stop hating.
Give everyone empathy all the time for their suffering, whether victims or perpetrators.
Hold the perpetrators absolutely accountable, but then refuse to do anything else when we think of them but hold them in compassion.
Not namby-pamby woo-woo “love and light" compassion, but fierce and wild and unstoppable compassion.
This work is NOT for sissies.
Become the yoga.
Unconditional love to you.”

I have come to realize that big and difficult questions involving humanity, or more personal ones, ultimately bring me to the same holy, quiet space where understanding does not take place in the form of thoughts. 

Instead, this awareness expands inwards and outwards in a more organic way, much like my breathing. 

It is not exactly a feeling; yet it potentially includes, and silently acknowledges, all of them. This understanding is linked to the centre of my own being, from which all emotions are sourced – and in which they are, hopefully, recycled.

Moreover, this intimate, yet inclusive place is also linked to everyone else’s centre – what Anna called "in your middle".

Isn’t it a beautiful paradox? 

This silent, intimate space is, at the same time, the vibrant link between my most grounded self and my higher self, and a connection to every other form of being. 

This is where all directions intersect.

And every one of these doors invites you in.

You might be meditating under a tree, or watching in awe your sleeping child.
You can open up willingly, or by the grace of a smile.
You could be immersed in prayer, or swimming in a lake...

Sometimes you are walking down a familiar street, and significant details are revealed that particular day.

You start noticing reflexions, harmonies, patterns of light and colour. A subtle language that reminds you how natural it is to open your self to beauty, in everything.

If you are truly aware of your heart as a sacred space that opens up to everything else, you are deepening and strengthening not only your own living experience, but also your positive influence in the world (no less).

My Qi Gong teacher, Lorne, remarked the other day: “The grass will remember your steps. You can look back and discover the drawing of your improvised path so far; you can walk on and discover new sceneries; you will know intuitively which way to go next.”

For me, this image works on an immediate and physical level – because I can feel the soft welcome of the grass; because I am in touch with its resilient, generous, patient spirit.

A child said What is the grass? fetching it to me with full hands;
How could I answer the child? I do not know what it is any more than he.
I guess it must be the flag of my disposition, out of hopeful green stuff woven.

Like Walt Whitman, I don’t need to explain the grass to be inspired by its gentle strength, its optimistic and forgiving nature. I simply need to listen to its voice, whispering inside me.

If I can listen to people, or think about them, in the same way – not from the outside, but from the inside – I can hopefully be in touch with the essence of their being, the same holy place within themselves that is connected to the source of love. 

It takes some practice, but the practice itself becomes very helpful. Grounding and uplifting.

Also, you might be sustained by serendipitous encounters, like Mark Nepo's book on the art of listening I came across a few days ago, as I was writing this post.

Listening helps you find the voice of everything within your own heart, where it already is.

Awe and reverence are also wonderful portals into this centre.

Patience, empathy and kindness work wonders, too   :o)


What are your favourite ways to find your own centre?

Do they help you connect with the “outside” world, as well?