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Mind of a Child

Beginner's Mind. Ground of Being. Emptiness.  Buddha Nature. Christ Consciousness. Awakening.
Different belief systems from the East and the West have similarly expressed the experience of being fully present (in Christianity and other monotheistic religions, being connected to God)--along with teachings for cultivating this state, e.g. through mindfulness, prayer and other contemplative practices. Recognizing our thoughts and feelings (sometimes called ego), which originate from our preconceptions, as being just thoughts and feelings sets us free. This is called beginner's mind or "don't-know" mind.
While it's a simple practice, it isn't easy. As little ones we begin being taught what we're supposed to do each and every moment in order to stay alive and hopefully thrive. But over time we begin chasing frantically after an ideal of what we've come to believe life is supposed to be. We become human doings instead of human beings, and we eventually dec…
Recent posts

"Principles of Yoga Don't Discriminate" - Matthew Sanford

I had the privilege of attending an on-line yoga seminar with Matthew Sanford yesterday, thanks to Yoga Alliance (and to my teacher, Julie Rosier, who told me about him years ago). He's been practicing and teaching yoga for 30 years from a wheelchair, paralyzed from the chest down since an accident at the age of 13. He said many brilliant things that I tried to capture. One that stuck with me is this: "Principles of yoga don't discriminate. Yoga poses do." He went on to explain that everyone has a different outer body, but the inner, subtle body, where you feel yoga, where you experience being alive, does not discriminate. Thus, my job as a teacher is to guide people to experience the subtle body, not just do poses. It's what I hope I've been accomplishing these past 15 years. My trainer, Esther Myers (d. 2004), conveyed this same, powerful concept through three principals of finding the ground, feeling the breath, and elongating the spine in every pose. She…

Aging Grays-fully

I've been thinking about no longer dying my hair, which I've been doing since my early 30s. I'm almost 44, and because of genetics and hair dye I'm often assumed to be younger. I realize in the grand scheme I'm still fairly young, but if I stop coloring my hair, I definitely won't look as young. In fact, I might actually look middle-aged. Gasp!

I remember clearly that when those first grays began coming in, quite conspicuously in my part, I'd pluck them. It wasn't long before I considered that the plucking might be exacerbating the issue, but I couldn't just let them go, and so naturally (ha!) I turned to hair dye. I remember thinking that I was too young to have gray hair…in retrospect, my mind postulates, "Said who?"

I don't know whether other cultures are as fixated as we Westerners are on youthfulness, which we seem to equate with goodness. On the contrary, we consider aging to literally be bad. In reality of course aging is neith…

All the Lonely People (Myself Included)

I'm a wife, a mom, a yoga teacher and a volunteer, who has lived in the same city for 21 years and in the same state my entire life, save one summer during college. I know a lot of people, yet I often feel lonely.

I feel lonely despite having made many mama friends and acquaintances through my kids' school communities over the years.

I feel lonely despite teaching 7 different yoga classes in 4 different locations every week.

I feel lonely despite volunteering once a week at an adult day center full of smiling grand-folks.

I feel lonely despite having moved two years ago to a new neighborhood surrounded by many warm, welcoming neighbors, who actually get together throughout the year.

I feel lonely despite having many extended family members who live fairly close.

I feel lonely despite having married my childhood sweetheart, who is a true partner in our family life.

I feel lonely despite having two children I adore, who at 10 and 9 still want their mama a lot.

I feel lonely oft…

Late Bloomer, or Right OWN Time?

It's September in NC, and look who I found in my yard yesterday. May into June is bloom time for gardenias here. I always remember this because they remind me of my father-in-law's mother, and they are always in bloom between Mother's Day and Father's Day. So this lone beauty is a few months behind the typical schedule here, yet she's perfect.

Oh, how I needed this sign.

I'm homeschooling one of my children this year, and to say it's been challenging already is an understatement. But I'm not sure my kiddo is to blame. I think instead it might be that my expectations are out of whack.

After all, my child has always done things HIS WAY. He is not someone who fits into any box, but my husband and I have surely tried everything we could all these years to help him fit at school. Ultimately, we saw this bright, curious, creative, exuberant child slip further and further behind, academically and socially.

I knew I had to do something different. I guess I jus…