Retirement as a Spiritual Practice

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My Tenets for Retirement as a Spiritual Practice

  • Live Only for Love
  • Live Life for the Love of Life
  • Be Grateful for All That I Have AND
  • Know That All That I Have is Enough
  •  My Body Was Born To Die
    • Every Breath is a Gift from Life
    • Be Grateful, Be Happy
    • Feel Joyful, Feel Loved
  • Give Only Love and Receive Only Love
    • Love IS the Flow that Moves Through Me
    • Love IS the Energy that Heals
    • Love is the Truth, All Else is the Illusion
    • Everything that isn’t Love Dies
    • Love Can Never Die
    • Love is the Creative Force of Life.                            

My words point my reader toward an embodied experience which can only be understood when it is felt. The mind will have many arguments about these tenets…they are not for the mind. Hold these concepts in your body and feel them with your heart. Only then, will you understand how they can be true. Your experiences are welcome if you would share them.

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Into the Stillness

voidMy yoga class began with meditation. As we sat, I spoke words to facilitate awareness of  body sensations. Leading the class with an invitation to simply notice what they felt, I had the sensory experience of my sitting bones resting on the meditation cushion, by feet and legs against the floor. I felt my spine lifting out of my pelvis and felt the relaxation of my shoulders down my back. I dropped my awareness into my chest and noticed my breath. Feeling the rise and fall of my chest and the expansion and contraction of my belly and back, my breath deepened. I felt my throat soften and widen.
As I stayed present to my breath, I began to notice my exhalation getting longer and as I reached the end of the exhale, I saw the portal. There, at the end of my breath, was a small sphere of light. I “stepped” into it and my breathing stopped. For an endless moment, I was in absolute stillness, a void that I have no other words to describe. The feeling was weightlessness, my body suspended in the experience. I heard my inhale as breath flowed effortlessly into my lungs for what seemed like many moments. I followed the breath in and at the end was the portal, and again I “stepped” into it, and as my breathing stopped I was back in the stillness.
It came to my mind that the stillness and the void are one and the same. The stillness contains the breath and I can remain in the stillness even though my breathing resumes. The point between the end of an exhale and the beginning of the next inhale is the portal into the void. Being in stillness is the experience of noticing the container instead of the contents.
The thought that appeared next was like an instruction to “practice staying in the stillness even though you continue to breathe.” So I did.
What followed was a series of instructions: “Once you are able to stay in the stillness even though you are breathing, practice staying in the stillness when you move.” I moved from the cushion, sliding to my back and drawing my knees into my chest all the while remaining in the experience of the void.
“Practice staying in the stillness when you open your eyes and allow the sensory experience of seeing the external world.” So I did… and the room was before me and I was still in the void. For two hours time disappeared and I taught the class effortlessly remaining conscious of being in the stillness.
“Practice being in the stillness, regardless of external circumstances and conditions.” I am here, writing these words, and the stillness is here.
The stillness is always here. It holds all the sensory experiences of my body within it…all that I see, hear, smell, taste and touch is within It. All of my thoughts are within It.
Although I am functioning in a normal way, my experience feels very soft and gentle. My body is relaxed and comfortable. My thoughts are succinct. In between each thought, my mind notices nothing but the stillness. I am experiencing the container, which is holding the contents.
In this moment, my life is a walking meditation. I feel a tremendous sense of gratitude for this life I have been given.
Namaste’

Let it Come to Me

moon on waterI rest back in the solitude
I feel the support of my spine
My unseen support is here holding me
Letting me know that I am not alone
No matter what my mind may say
About the complications
About the difficulties
That lie on the path ahead
I know that the truth is
This moment is all there is
In this moment I have nothing to fear
In this moment I am safe and warm and loved
In this moment all is well

There is so much magnificence
In this morning
I gaze out my window and see the clear blue of the sky
bird in fountainThe trees sway in the gentle breeze
The birds splash in the fountain and enjoy the safety of our habitat
The kittens play hide and seek in their box
I sip my tea and listen to the moving strains of heartfelt music.

 

What right does my mind have to try and disturb my reverie?
What cause can be so pressing that I should leave my stillness?
What if I stop leaving and simply stay here?
What if I rest back in my body, keeping all my energy tucked in
And wait for the world to come to me?
What if when the world comes knocking
I greet it with a knowing smile.
What if I say to the world,
“I am here for you
…But only on my terms.
You cannot take from me my serenity
For it is my birthright.
You cannot steal my peace of mind.
You cannot seize my joy.
You cannot have one precious moment
For this is the life I’ve been given!”

I am a safe, loved and loving child of the Universe
This life is mine!
Every thought I embrace is mine to think
Every word I speak is mine to say
Every action I take is mine to make
I am a Free Spirit
Who chooses to inhabit this body
And live out this life.

So today I remember
To surrender to the Universe that is holding me
There is no where for me to go
There is no thing for me to do
There is no thing for me to think about
I am safe and it is alright to relax completely.
Innocent and vulnerable, I surrender to what is.
I trust that the Universe is planning for me
The film is in the can.
So I can simply rest back and
Breath
Ground
Integrate
Surrender and
Smile.yoga 2

Oh, Holy Breath

Breath Deep (275 x 389)Sweet breath of life
I sing your praises.

You are my anchor.

You bring me back to my body
when Mind steals me away.

No matter how far into the past or future I wander,
in a holy instant, awareness of you brings me home.

You are my ocean upon whose waves prana surfs,
washing through me with life-giving energy.

With every breath I am born again;
filled with the promise of life…

each exhalation, an opportunity to release
all that I am holding that no longer serves me.

With a single conscious breath
I am filled with nurturing, nourishing Life-Force Energy.

Coming up from the Earth,
I breathe the breath of the Divine Mother
into every cell.

Oh, Holy Breath,
because of you,
my body wakes to the joy of another living day.

breath rock