It has been a while since I’ve been able to write a post, but I found this scrap in my journal and it opened something about chaotic, uncertain inner periods.
“In creative process, there is the inland sea and there is the book or dance or symphony—masterpieces, competencies, mediocrities—that litter the beach to be seen, to be turned over, to be heard. Art is the jetsam of the great submergence.” Read more
I sit alone in the middle of the night in the living room of my parents’ house that is also the house where I grew up. I did my homework here, watched snow fall here, I ate meals, took baths, danced, and slept here. This house still smells of childhood, of woods fires and sea air. My parents will never come back to this house. I sit in my mother’s blue chair as if I might absorb a lingering presence of her body, but she is not here. She has been increasingly restless in her blue chair for the past two years as her dementia confused her, then sad and frenzied after Dad’s stroke.
Last week she sat in her chair and waited for him to come sit in his even though she knew, then forgot over and over, that he couldn’t ever sit there again. Read more
It is a quiet thing, learning from wilderness, becoming less tame, and less inclined to tame every little moment and every little action, to let time roam freely in me, my hair to tangle, my ears to grow as big as jackrabbit ears. ‘Wild’, as I am coming to know it, is learning a different way of being, and discovering, once the old veneer of self has chipped off, the original wood of self, Read more
Days of hammering nails into the porch frame of the barn transform me. I’ve gotten good at swinging the hammer, letting the tool do the work, the nail going straight in, but I have to focus on each strike. I breathe and strike. Breathe and strike. Then I stand and gaze at the march of 2X4s thinking of the time when the boards will all be screwed down and people will sit here, chatting, or quietly watching Hermit’s Peak. This thought makes it easier to bend forward and begin striking again. Breathe and strike. This is mantra work. This is breath work. Read more
The dervish’s turban has four wraps.
The first is renunciation of this world.
The second is renunciation of the Other World.
The third is renunciation of the self.
The fourth is renunciation of renunciation.
Not a lot of words here, but an elegant, succinct map for a pursuit which could occupy the better part of a lifetime to undertake and understand. Read more
When we cultivate our spiritual life, our daily life increasingly becomes the face of the Divine.
This came to me as we chanted Ya Muhyi (The Enlivener) in the recent Baton Rouge weekend workshop. I saw daily life as surface, like the earth’s crust, floating above a timeless unitive Communion. We have families and jobs, responsibilities and identities. This is our surface. If, inside, a spark flutters then flames into a blaze of spiritual life, we find, Read more
At the recent Kripalu Intensive, on the last day, Loretta read this stunningly beautiful poem to all of us. It captured our state but took us beyond as well. She has kindly let me share it here.
Under Shiva’s Gaze
Shiva graces our Dancing
As we enter the Great Temple of the Body.
Here is a wonderful string from a Facebook conversation amongst Dancemeditation™ practitioners. Our goal with this conversation is to inspire and support a daily practice or teaching of Dancemeditation. Each month we work on a suggested topic.
November 1 Dunya McPherson, Principal Teacher
Please describe in excruciating detail exactly where and when you do your daily practice. Where is the space? What time of day? What do you wear? What do you sit on? What music have you been using? How long have your practice sessions been? How many each week for the past two weeks?
November 1 Jessica Iscah Tkach Paquin
In the last two week I have practices 2-3x a week. I have a dance/meditation room. It has teal walls and big bright windows. Read more
I sit in the Pine Grove a bit shocked by all the small purple flowers, tufts of long, tender grass, and feathery, ferny stems springing up from what was a dense, brittle carpet of pine needles when I departed. I am wading in shin-deep greenery! The ground is vaguely springy. The rainy-season has also brought along other not-so-pleasant shifts—mosquitos. Surprise! There were never any mosquitos in all my prior years in New Mexico. I’m trying to wrack my brain for what good there might be in a mosquito…Now I have to put in screens or forfeit entirely the cool night breeze. Read more
The Dharma-Karma Thing is what I call the sense of two divergent, often dissonant, but equally substantial streams of purpose running through my time on earth. Karma—the world, family, business, stuff, stuff—feels a bit heavy. Dharma feels like the forward unfolding of spiritual Path, my reason for being born. Both carry responsibilities and both bring satisfaction or misery, but one is laden with the past and the other is the freedom of becoming True.