Empathy and compassion are natural states for most human beings, and fortunately so. For in feeling empathy towards another we have dissolved the boundaries—even if temporarily—that frequently are imagined to exist between one another.When we are compassionate, we help each [...]
What shapes our being? (If there is even a shape to be ascribed). What shapes the mind and heart? What is the shape our future, our actions, words and silence? Many things shape us, from our genes, parents, culture and [...]
Whether we need support over the holidays, post election, or just plain in general – learning how to titrate is one of the most powerful and skillful ways to self regulate, re-find balance and stay in the present moment when [...]
Recently, I’ve been thinking about the potential for self-harm or self-care and the sometimes subtle differences between the two when it comes to questions we hold inside and things we don’t say out loud.
In contemplative traditions there has always been an emphasis on non – harming. In the Buddhist and yogic traditions it is referred to as Ahimsa, which means to refrain from harming, or taking the life of any living being. It is one of the 5 precepts that lay people take as gifts that bring freedom and guidelines to intentionally living an ethical and thoughtful life.
Part of a mindfulness practice is noticing our thoughts and feelings as they occur. We train our mind to be more ‘on the point’ of the present moment so to speak, so that whatever thoughts we have we notice them, and if we are feeling something we notice that too. This developed quality of noticing is what builds into knowing ourselves deeply.
Like a willowy tree with heavy, low hanging fruit – I was hooked up and laden with tubes in a hospital bed just a mere few weeks ago. Every drip and every bag contained something that my body needed and facilitated the repair and support for the surgery I had just had. I was tethered and wilted and grateful for the care!
We’ve all been broken and somehow repaired at least a few times in our lives, psychically split and sewn back together. The longer we live, the more there are emotional, mental and physical bumps and bruises, parts that break down and parts that break open. Rather than think of these fractures as flaws or weaknesses...
To witness or to be with, not as a separate entity or self is one of our most potent and powerful tools for transformation and healing (in it's many iterations). To witness is to embrace our experiences individually and collectively. To bear witness is to be with, without the normal layer of judgment, or as importantly to notice the judgment as it arises and actually feel the pain and separation it creates so that it can be let go of.
Life can sometimes seem long, long enough or not very long. I remember thinking it was long in my 20's, long enough in my 30's, not very long now that I'm in my 50's and probably really short as I (hopefully) get much older.