Well I guess the aversion to technology is still very much with me, seeing as I didn’t manage a post last week at all! Plus there has been rather a lot going on in the inner realms, and yes for those who have been following me for any length of time you are rolling your eyes and saying, tell me something I don’t know. Well I do have something new to tell you and it is stirring things up although not quite as much as it might have before my Vipassana experience. Just as my Beloved and I have become settled and happy in our funky little flat we got the news a week ago now that we have to move out. Not because of any problems with our tenancy, our wonderful landlords need the space back and are very sorry to see us go.
The wonderful new kitchen I was so excited about!
So once again we need to create a miracle and find a place where we can have our privacy at an exceptionally cheap rate. Our little flat has also been serving as a space where we can see clients so that is also something that we need to organise and all of this at bargain basement prices. If I was feeling a little anxious I think that most people would consider me completely normal. Well there has of course been some anxiety kicking around but not as much as you might think, I am still in the space of not being reactive which was such an enormous gift from my silent retreat. We took a couple of days to process the news and then began to put the word out into the community for a new place to call home.
There are various practical things one can do out in the world when seeking to create a new beginning, but just as important is the work you can do inside yourself. Yesterday my Beloved and I did some toning together, this is where you intone the vowel sounds and create harmonics that you can feel go right through you. We were toning away when we began to go into a very deep pitch with the sounds, I became aware as we were doing this that our sounds were grounding our new home into place. This is how we can use more of our human potential, by exploring all the different ways to access the incredible treasures that every single person on the planet has inside of them. These kinds of creative processes are powerful in a very practical sense. Not only can they help to create the future you desire but in the short-term it can dissipate feelings of anxiety and fear.
So here’s to the new abode that will house the inspiring presence of “The Love Bubble Presents”! Letting go of fear and embracing trust I move into the flow of a meaningful and prosperous life, aho!
Hello Online Blog World, I have been avoiding you all week and your cousin FB for the last couple of days. Since having the break from technology at Vipassana I am very partial to having at least one day a week where I ignore the internet and phone, sometimes more! But I did make a commitment to pop in a post once a week and my over conscientious streak is still a part of me, keep it constructively channeled and it can be a great asset. That’s the thing about getting to know yourself and being kind and compassionate in that self-regard. Things that you think are making you neurotic can become helpful as you relax and actually manage to truly see your thoughts and the patterns therein. With inner clarity you can see the general patterns that don’t support your happiness, and you can also see which bits help you to remain in that happy state.
So I know which patterns I want to encourage, how hard can it be and yet people everywhere continue to make choices that re-enforce exactly that. The first thing that needs to happen is for awareness to be brought to our thoughts, our body, our whole selves as much as is possible. There are many ways of doing that, I love body-based techniques that involve meditation and movement. Of course my absolute favourite is my Relationship as a Spiritual Practice but I love variety too so it is good to shop around. Dance is particularly good fun and I am looking forward to a new class I will be experiencing in a couple of weeks which combines Feldenkrais and dance.
The informal practice of Vipassana remains excellent in terms of me bringing it to my everyday life but the formal practice has been somewhat intermittent. Not to worry, there have been many deep and fundamental shifts unfolding in the last couple of months and I can feel my forward progress quite strongly at the moment. This feels true for my Beloved also, he is making some important steps into his fullness as a man and this is such a delight for me! At the end of the day it is important to stay as centered as you can, to love well and find meaning and purpose in being alive on the planet. Accepting the choices you have made even as you flow in the direction of inspired change. Whatever you may have chosen consciously or unconsciously, there is always an option to change your mind if awareness has brought you new understanding.
Travel well my friends and be in the space of love as much as you possibly can, it is the greatest protector you could ever have. My love bubble is in it’s third year now and it has cushioned me in the tougher times, and enhanced my pleasure in sharing the great times. Love is such good medicine! Aho!
It’s been a long journey of integration since we returned from Vipassana, and I have not felt like writing much. I’ve enjoyed doing some drawing and often with my Beloved, so nice to share a flowing, creative and spontaneous process with each other. I had a day in the flow as I shopped online for a blender and handed out some flyers, and felt the butterflies in my belly as the first “Buddha Meets Your Body” class here in our home town is on tomorrow. Our Facebook event link is: https://www.facebook.com/events/676253365851284/ I went shopping for dinner and sent my hard working man off to his men’s group with a belly full of baked fish, potato and carrot mash, and a salad. Veggies all organic, feel very happy where I live, beautiful people in this community who are kind and who care and embody that quality in their lives. I felt as I ate dinner tonight as if I had truly arrived in this funky little space of ours, after a deep, deep voyage that it has taken some time to come back from.
My Beloved and I at the door to our little hobbit home! Photo by Ulli Hansen.
So I think I will try to publish a post a week but it will come when it comes, I need motivation to do things regularly and it doesn’t come from routine for me. For me creativity tends to flow with the sweet chaos of the feminine and I love to improvise and be in the moment, and in my body especially. I have been having a super interesting time watching my thoughts, I can see how there is a tendency for them to flow in a not so supportive way. The more formal practice is starting to come, the plan is to do 20 minutes a day as well as starting every morning with 5 minutes of focusing on the breath. It feels like I am developing the facility of being informed about great injustice in the current system without adding unnecessary mental anguish to the equation. Just as the mental attitude adds more pain to the experience of pain in the body, we can be in really intense emotional pain that is part circumstance or situation and part mental. What we think about our situation really has an impact on how we feel, observe the sensations and let go of the story, then see what is left. Doesn’t mean there isn’t anything to do, it is not a recipe for being passive. It’s just up to you what you do, nobody can do everything.
At the moment it feels like I need to focus on “The Love Bubble Presents”, running classes with my Beloved is a lovely way to work in a group. I can do what I do well and leave a lot of the talking to him, I hold space and connect people to their bodies. The more we do the less nervous I may become but there is often an anticipation before stepping into a performance space which can help with the focus. And I really have had a lovely flowing day, the butterflies were simply a sensation I noted quite strongly earlier in the morning. There is a trace there now but it is just a sensation and it will pass, and that will leave the excitement at the unfolding of my Beloveds and my creative vision for a purposeful, prosperous life. The Facebook link for “The Love Bubble Presents” is:
This is me at Woodford on New Years Day 2016. Photo by the amazing Ulli Hansen.
The silence on this blog has stretched on for somewhat more than just ten days, perhaps it has provided a welcome relief to all the noble chatter that has gone on in the three years since inception.I say noble chatter with the greatest respect, it has been the most wonderful place to express my thoughts and feelings with honesty and being as open as I can be. And it will continue, this is not a preamble for a dissolution, but some things have been dissolved and so as I continue in all aspects of my life it will be interesting to see how that letting go has made a difference.
I have done long retreats but never one like this Vipassana and I am truly impressed with not only the process itself but also with the organisation that keeps it going in the world and that makes it available to all completely through donation. It does not matter how much money you have or how little, whether your status in the world is high or low. Are you prepared to renounce the life that you live for ten whole days and to live as a monk or nun might, hours of meditation and bells telling you where you are meant to be at certain times. I always felt a great attraction to this life and so when the opportunity presented itself I threw myself in at the deep end, by the time I got half way through I must have been doing between 6 and 8 hours of meditation every day.
It was not easy, especially on the physical side of things, sitting for many hours in stillness is not something my body is used to. And yet the pain was such an amazing teacher, even in the moments when I wanted to scream with the intensity of the sensation I felt gratitude to the experience. That has to be a sign of spiritual maturity surely! When you can be thankful in moments like that your eventual understanding is assured. Watching this pain over many hours I couldn’t help but notice that it wasn’t always the same, and the less importance I gave it the less intense it became. So when in the discourse the teacher spoke about adding our mental pain to the physical sensation I understood what he was saying with my body not just with my mind. When I simply observed without reacting the intensity of the sensation became so much less. I was observing the sensations in my body as they were in each moment, sounds like such a simple thing and yet it has had a profound effect upon my deeper self.
The process we went through was described to us as being like a surgeon operating very deeply into our minds, the part that is left untouched by the majority of people in this culture. So I am different as a result but what that will mean in my life is something that will unfold over the following months and even years. There will be another 10 day retreat in there at some point. and a regular sitting for my Beloved and I once a week for an hour. And the increased awareness that I now have of bodily sensations can be a part of every moment that I experience. There will be more reflection on all of this for sure but that will do for now, enough that I am happy and well and enjoying this wonderful life on Earth! Namaste.
As I searched for images for this post I found a hilarious account of a Vipassana experience, you will laugh even if you’ve never done it, if you have please check out this link, especially if you could do with a good belly laugh!
Well this is the day before I head off to a 10 day silent retreat, the one I was going to train for by meditating for at least 10 minutes a day. You probably can already guess that it didn’t quite work out that way after all. I have done some meditation though and more regular stretching so I have improved my capacity which will be very helpful. I have certainly done a lot of shedding and letting go of energies that were ready to leave, some not feeling very nice. So my training has been somewhat intuitive and for someone who loves to improvise this is probably the perfect preparation!
I am feeling a lot of fear and that makes my mind want to latch on to the few things I need to do before heading off for what will end up being close to two weeks. I am heading in to a very intense experience and I have no expectations as to what that will feel like. I know it will be challenging but in what particular form I do not know and have no desire to make any stories about it. There is fear and there is also a part of me looking forward to the break from everything, even my Beloved. Well not exactly looking forward to the last part, it will be strange for us to be apart for so long. But oh the reunion, and an exchange of our individual journeys, whatever we are able to share.
It will be really, really interesting and I am sure I will learn a lot! I’m not promising a post next week, but if I get time to rustle something up before I head off tomorrow I will schedule it in. So enjoy being in the world as I prepare to leave it for a time, aho!
There is a feeling of great satisfaction to be found in finally getting on with tasks that you have been wanting to do for ages but can’t quite seem to find the time for. It is much easier to think and be creative in a space that has some order to it and having beautiful things to gaze upon has also become incredibly important to me over the years. Our physical environment is an important reflection of how we think about ourselves, even if someone else picked it all out that very fact says a lot about you.
At night my Beloved and I love to light candles all around the room and turn the lamps off, candlelight is not only more romantic than electric it is also softer. Of course you need good light to read by but how about scheduling in times where you have the softness of candles warming the space. Quiet time with no television or computers, time where you simply sit with your thoughts and feelings and allow yourself to be rather than do. I go on about this sort of thing a lot and yet even I notice resistance in myself when contemplating time spent in this fashion.
We live in a culture where it is all about doing, not surprising when you consider the ways in which society is dominated by the masculine. As we come into balance as a civilisation it is important to learn how to value ‘being’ as much as we do action. The best way that I can do this is by embodying this principle in my own life, not just when I am with my Beloved, but when I am on my own. So I will consider how best I can achieve this, regular sitting meditation is probably a good place to start. I am booked in for a 10 day Vipassana at the end of January next year so getting into training is probably a good idea!
I will keep you posted on my progress, even as I am writing this I can feel resistance so it is going to take some focus and a strong intention. Perhaps I will actually make a statement here, to be doing at least four sessions of meditation a week by the beginning of December.