What will this year bring? What bumps and joys lie ahead?
This time of year, as jews- we reflect on this all. What last year brought us, taught us, showed us, handed us. And what we can do next year to be better citizens, engaged humans, thoughtful leaders and compassionate neighbors.
What does this really mean?
Looking back, I see a year of change and transition at every season and looking ahead I see mostly unknowns. I set my intention for how I think and want things to be, but there is always a bigger plan that I have no control over. Daily, I surrender to that truth. In our yoga practice we chant “OM NAMAHA” which translates, in this context to- “I give up. I surrender. I see that I am not in charge. I honor the inter-connectedness of it all.”
The only TRUTHS that I can know is that we will experience at some time in the next few months all the feelings of being human, the whole range of emotions- there will be incredibly joyful proud days and there will be moments of utter pain and suffering.
For me, this knowing that I can expect it all- is comforting. I approach the new year reflective about how much last year taught me. Closing my studio. Breaking my foot. Living in New England for the summer. I see moments of light. Memories flood my brain, feelings in my heart of being with people I love, in beautiful places. Enjoying nature, company and the sunset moments where the colors scream “NOTICE ME! I AM HERE TO SHOW YOU MY POWER. FEEL ME. INTEGRATE ME. WAKE UP!” All while remembering long, quiet days on the couch this past Spring, when I could not leave my house, when I had to be healed. When I had to stay still. When I went into the depths of my “sacred sabbatical” only to come out stronger, wiser, humble to the body that has mostly allowed me to run, dance and play whenever I want. OM NAMAHA.
And I have no clue what will arise this year. There are unknowns for us all. Upcoming political changes, racial tension, violence and if you keep looking, keep digging- you see people taking care of one another. You see people showing up with food, with hugs, with notes and acts of kindness. They, too- are everywhere if you search for them.
“Ehipassiko! Come & see for yourself.” Buddhist teaching
And now begins our exploration of the most incredible shift that can occur in your life. It’s giving the gift of attention to your life. To right now, this moment. This is all you have, truly. Attention is when we take notice of someone or something as interesting or important. There is nothing more interesting or important than your life.
We often live in our minds – in the past with thoughts and conversations that already occurred, or in the future – worrying and stressing about something that may or many not happen. But the truth is, all we have is this moment. At any moment, the phone could ring or the email could come in that changes everything. And at some point, this happens to us all.
But attention is only this right here. This breath. This day. This sensation.
Our yoga practices guide us to open our eyes, our hearts, and our minds to the fact that noticing and being curious about our life is life. It’s the purest form of love to just be present, to show your interest in your life and in others.
So, let’s start right now. Cultivate an attention practice. Commit to noticing the sights, smells, sensations, feelings, and noises around you right now, in this moment. Pay attention.”-
excerpt from Delight: Eight Principles for Living with Joy and Ease
Take a moment this week ( Jewish or not) to reflect on the past year- to meditate on the moments that flash in your mind. What stands out? What feelings did you have? What areas did you find yourself LOVING YOUR LIFE? And where was there darkness? What pain did you face? I’d love to hear from you- email me to share- firstname.lastname@example.org
With a grateful heart,