About 22 years ago I had a tattoo made on my left wrist. It's the Chinese sign for water. My reason for choosing this sign was simple. I saw it as a constant reminder of not holding on to what needs to go, and to not resist and push away what is. In other words, to go with the flow of it all.
All these years later that tattoo still reminds me of just that. And it is as important to me now as it was then. But funnily enough, I just realized the other day that I haven't been going with the flow these last couple of months. I have had the opposite experience, what has felt like swimming against the stream. What I see now is that I had to do that for a while before I could trust my gut yet again, and identify the "against the stream" situation. I am referring to my attempts to teach indoors on Sunday mornings while simultaneously being on Zoom. These indoor classes did not turn out in a way it was easeful for me to offer up the best of myself as a guide and teacher. I am actually feeling relief to have made the decision to leave the studio classes behind for now. Sunday morning will be back to being only via zoom. And for those of you that choose to be on camera, I will keep an eye on you on my tv screen. I can see some things, although far from everything, and I will help you to the degree I am able. If you feel unsure about something on the mat, or you are practicing with an injury or ache that you are concerned about, please feel free to reach out to me if you want to set up a private session to address your specific situation.
Secondly I will start in-person outdoor classes again, the first one this Friday morning at 9am - 10:15 on Peter's pool deck. I will be there except if it is raining. There is mostly shade, and there will be bug spray available. You need your mat, and I will have my belt and blocks available. If it rained the night before you might want to bring a bath towel for under your mat. You will find the pool deck at 251 Maple Road in Valley Cottage. Please park on the street on the same side as the house. There is a gate at the back of the drive-way that takes you right there. It's a beautiful spot for practice!
I am considering a Yoga Nidra now and then, but will just throw out a time with a few days notice as the summer weather is making Saturday late mornings a less favorable time for most.
Lastly I will share my second poem that I wrote for my contemplative care training. It needs no introduction. It has all to do with letting go...
One single moment
There is life,
and there is breath.
But now, breath is changing.
I hear effort, like it’s getting to be work to breath.
There is a faint sound of fluid in the breath.
You are safe, I say. Close to his ear.
He turns his head towards my voice. His eyes are open, but they cannot see.
I am? he asks, with urgency.
Yes, I say. You are safe.
Breath changing again. Gets more labored, the bubbling a bit louder.
He reaches for my hand, we hold hands. Time passes.
Suddenly he squeezes my hand hard.
His breath changing yet again, falls into no struggle, no bubbling.
A series of small, gentle breaths follow. All the way on the top.
And then, no breath.
His head falls to the side. The grip of his hand softens.
There is silence.
And there is peace.
In one single moment, he slipped away.
In one single moment he went from fully alive and aware, to, I don’t know...
The moment was powerful. Ever so brief, and ever so powerful.
I feel awe, and I feel a sense of immense sacredness.
I sit in this Mystery.
And never the same.