Recently, the reflection of life that continues to weave through my days is the guidance to anchor MORE, to root, to ground the attention and to truly experience the sense of drawing the light down into the body, into this earth walk….through slowing down and embracing the mundane, through receiving the teachings of life and somehow making the “vision” or the high moments of understanding and inspiration concrete, in simple ways…lived, manifested, expressed through the NOW.
So much of our spiritual seeking is “out there” somewhere…looking for god in the heights, in the peak of experience, in the joy of being in the zone or in love or in some sort of expression of ecstasy or expansion. Those spiritual experiences of course have their teaching….in fact they guide us to widen the container and to expand the capacity to hold the fullness of life, allowing us to see and feel more deeply how wide and vast we truly are. And yet, expansion and the width and depth that is met through powerful moments of growth and experience is one side of the spectrum of the fullness of our reality.
Today in my yoga practice I touched the other side of the spectrum deeply…the simplicity of the softening presence of the exhale, and the power of creating space for integration…simply through slowing down…feeling, breathing, and listening.
There was a buzz inside of me…a subtle vibration of edginess and tiredness…a slight feeling of nervousness to meet the fullness of the moment. And the simple and nourishing softening presence of the exhale guided me (again!)…back into the space of gentleness within, open-ness, softness…observing how the tension in the physical body dropped away…layer by layer revealing a deeper connection with the textures of sounds, the quality of resting on the earth, and the feeling inside my own form. Over time, or spontaneously this practice of resting into simplicity and presence may reveal a very tangible sense of embodiment, of essence…simply through the act of receiving the moment and NOURISHING PEACE.
Can we bring more attention to the spaces between thought and within the UN-DOING and truly celebrate the opening into restfulness? Into spaciousness? Into Integration?
I am constantly amazed by how the most simple tools such as conscious breath, observing the sensations in the body, and simply witnessing and listening to the layers of sound can reveal such a vast connection to the inner space. The rich layers of the inner experience are revealed through the willingness to BREATHE with presence and to track the sensations of tightness and control within the body and the mind. This awareness slowly melts away the tension, on a very visceral level. We must be vigilant with continually calling the attention back to NOW, and yet these moments of letting go create a potent field of integration…where our being can finally rest and say, “thank you! i’ve been holding onto so much!”
In a time of so much distraction and intensity, these points of integration and simplicity may be crucial to our health, vitality and sense of peace within. As dynamic beings we are bombarded by our own patterns of mind, the collective busyness and the call to achieve, do and become. The mind/body system is mostly functioning from a space of overload…just trying to cope with the overwhelm of being human in this very complex and rich expression of life.
As we create space for simple and gentle moments of integration, whether it happens on the yoga mat, or while sitting on the earth, or drinking a cup of tea, (or where-ever) we slowly widen this vessel of the body to truly receive and make sense of the peaks and the valleys that we cross through as human beings. Through moments of integration, we may finally allow the high spiritual experiences or the very grounded daily insights to become more fully anchored within the cells of the body and thereby affecting our capacity to weave those understandings into the energy that we express through our life. And maybe this is how we can enhance the possibility of truly living the wisdom of the soul light within this earth walk…with more clarity, more intention, more alignment, more integrity.
If the spiritual openings we have remain “out there” somewhere as a memory or vision they may somehow become dormant within us, and yet when there is space to feel…to drop in…to observe and integrate all that we are passing through maybe these teachings of life can truly begin to be lived through our actions, our words, our thoughts, our relationship with others and ourselves.
After all, when glimpses of clarity or expansion, understanding or healing descend upon us it is a kiss of grace…a gift, a blessing….
So on a regular basis why not give those glimpses more space to land deeper within us, by breathing with awareness, feeling our body and listening. Allowing all that we receive to become a part of the sacred tapestry that are the actions of our lives….
Art Credit – Jaimie Cahlil