Thursday, March 25, 2010


Recently, I listened to someone tell me all the reasons we couldn't do something. I heard them tell me why it is done as it is. I suggested we try something different because what we do isn't necessarily helpful to everyone. I asked point blank would they be willing. I watched as this person refuse to answer my question. I watched the conversation be deflected to other topics.

"Knowledge is what you learn from a book. Truth comes from the experience." ~ The Voice of Knowledge
This reminds me of the Peaceful Warrior where Socrates says, "Intelligence is knowing, wisdom is doing."

Truth then is the result of action. If the action I take creates limits for myself, that is my truth about my life; it has limits. This is interesting for me to ponder as I consider taking a personal step that seems like a big one. I was fascinated to watch myself use this same tactic yesterday. An obstacle has arisen in my path. My thoughts went to "well, maybe this isn't meant to be. Perhaps I should wait."

I noticed my thoughts. I saw how willingly I was believing what might be truth for someone else, not what was true for me. To achieve what I desire, may mean I need to take other steps first or perhaps in a different direction, but the potential is there... if I believe in the potential.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Clear seeing

The week is over and the voices of children calling my name, demanding my attention has come to an end. I am relishing the silence within the walls of my home. My thoughts move back over the week and see the little faces and hear their voices... Heather, Heather, Heather.... I draw them in and ask them to see I am one person watching 6 people - we need to share, we need to see what is happening, not seek for ourselves.

I recall giving assist to two little ones, only 5 years old, holding each other up, balancing. I help, ensuring one doesn't accidentally land on the other. I see the little face as he looks and me and says, "it's okay, I've got this." So much determination, so much spirit and so much desire to succeed. I laugh with pure joy.

One young lady leans into me, talks to me, stands by me as I chat with another instructor... waiting for my attention. Listening to me. Her comment, 'you ask hard questions." I want to hold her tight.

Maybe I am not the person to be teaching these little minds and bodies. Then I reflect on the adults I also try to coach and teach and I see the same look of questioning, I see the same deafness to my words and see the same distraction. I also see the same passion for meaning in their lives.

Maybe I must just focus on offering my message and leave the receiving to the students. This means letting go of the importance of me as the successful teacher. Ahhh... it feels lighter now. :)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Sword of Courage, the Strength of true friends.

While recently listening to an audio of Pema Chodron, advice she offered in times of struggle are to just begin by turning up the corners of the lips. Since my son is now away and I have recognized my need to practice present moment awareness in order to manage the negative feelings and thoughts that keep arising when he goes away. Anxiety and resentment.

Practice - I committed to Yoga with the corners of my lips turned up as per the instruction. I often practice alone - but now I chose a class in the company of friends. Immediately, with friends and the smile playing on my lips, the poses felt a little lighter. There was great physical challenge, I stayed with my breath and my will; and I kept coming back to the small smile.

As the practice came to an end, I allowed myself to fully receive the assist, the love and compassion of a friend. My heart broke through. The steel wall of resentment and anxiety that shielded my heart split in half. Underneath lay grief, sorrow and fear. Bare to my own vulnerability, I truly saw my enemy. This was not first offering of love in recent days, but the first only cracked the surface.

My heart wept with compassion. I could not fix it - I could not make a person I loved happy. With an open heart I could finally gain more acceptance that I can never fix things for anyone, only myself; and not by changing the conditions of the material world, but only by how I see them. I can offer love, support and conditions, but I cannot make anyone appreciate them. AND as others offer me their love and support, it is only I who can chose to see it, appreciate it and integrate it.
Thank you beautiful ladies.

The tears washed away the grief, the sense of failure, I was holding. Seeing it allowed me to really understand what was real in my heart and more importantly, what I needed to do. Behind the shield lay the sword of courage and freedom. I can now chose to pick it up.

Am I happy? - You betcha! But I am sure there will be more steel walls and more swords to be discovered along this path I call life. Now I have faith I will continue to look for the sword.

Monday, March 8, 2010


I can feel the anger and resentment bubbling up and interrupting me. Like a constant wind blowing in my face I feel like I am pushing back against an unmovable force. I can't hit the right keys on the keyboard, the fire won't light, the dog doesn't come when I call and one day seems to reel after the other in an never ending series of meaninglessness.

What is the point? I wonder. I can try to be the best I can be and it never lulls the wind. The world still seems full of drivers trying to go when it isn't their turn, people taking what doesn't belong to them and immeasurable suffering with far more immediacy than my pitiful feelings of loss and grief.

I try to allow this groundlessness. I try to move into the emotion and immediately my mind steps in to analyze whether the moving in is working at relieving my suffering. This only enhances it.

What's left? Practice and hopelessness. There will always be this suffering but just maybe with enough practice I will not fear it's presence. Or perhaps I will, but I will laugh at my willfulness.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Vulnerable connections

The day ahead a little structure but not much. Opportunity came in the form of time with friends , fellow Yogis. As we sat in this space where there were mats and room to move. I craved moving. I longed to suggest that we practice. I talked about wanting to practice. 

Eventually, one by one, they began to practice. I watched. I hesitated. Now it would look like I was copying them. I hesitated. Finally, I asked one person to share an experience with me - I wanted to see if I could help her fly. It eventually lead to my own flying experience. As I came though the air and eventually to my own feet, my heart raced, my head dizzy, the world seemed upside down.

I have watched these ladies do this for months. I have wanted to do this for months.
Why could I not say what I wanted months ago and that very morning? Why was I afraid to own my own desire?
This came back to me:

Once upon a time you took shelter against real or imagined storms. Eventually the tempests passed, but to hedge against future turmoil you fortified yourself, silently holding fast to the haven you built. Just like that, what was once protection becomes your ball and chain. To break your chains you’ll need to see that there was no “I” to protect and that the only real refuge is the Boundless. ~ Rod Stryker

Trying to protect the "I" from rejection and unsatisfied desire. 

Flying taught me that without out asking for what I want, I cannot receive all the love and support from the strong foundation of others. In silence, I reject the opportunity to connect with my own inner spark and theirs.

As it comes time to post -- I am questioning whether this text is good enough. Thinking about choosing silence. But it is time to emerge from the haven.