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Practice stillness amid the swirl of activity

By May 13, 2011 - 6:08pm

As I sat at my computer this morning, a Great Blue Heron flew by the window, circled and landed by the creek to hunt. The gigantic bird moved carefully and deliberately through last summer’s bent and brown grasses to the edge of the water where it stood in complete and utter stillness. Even knowing exactly where it stood, I almost lost it from vision and didn’t dare look away fearing I’d lose track of it.

We stayed transfixed this way. The bird watching the water with patience and stillness, and me watching the bird. The heron was still for seven full minutes before knifing his long beak into the creek for a fish.

As I watched, I thought about Women’s Empowerment Workshop. Patience is one of the tools we’ll be learning, especially in the nature photography sessions. Like the Blue Heron, sometimes we must practice stillness amid the swirl of activity, electronics, information overload, and allow what we need in our life to come to us.

When was the last time you stopped for ten minutes in complete, waking stillness? Try it and see what comes your way.

By June 17, 2011 - 4:22pm

I also give myself permission to mess up and that relieves the pressure so one is not sidetracked by criticizing self. I say to my self when mny mind starts chattering:
not right now thank you, going back to breath..
I klso find that if instead of letting my mind race thinking OUTSIDE of Now and this activity, I focus on breath and feeling my heart beat and the blood move it keeps me focused in the body and inner and NOW.

and yes, Susie is right - practice practice...

June 17, 2011 - 4:22pm
By June 17, 2011 - 5:28am

Not yet! But trucking on!

June 17, 2011 - 5:28am
By June 16, 2011 - 11:34pm

How are things going, Lynda? Did you find a bit of stillness?

June 16, 2011 - 11:34pm
By June 15, 2011 - 9:05pm

Thank you Susie, I will give that a try. Nothing else seems to work, hopefully this will. I'll keep you posted. :-)

June 15, 2011 - 9:05pm
By June 15, 2011 - 5:32pm

Lynda, may I offer my own experience with the spinning, whirling, unquiet mind. Two words: Practice breath. It's hard at first but the more we focus on our breath the more present we become. Pick your favorite time of day and practice counting to 5 slowly as you breathe in and to 5 as you breathe out. This will give you a balanced breath. When that is going well, add your thoughts. Breathe in relaxation to every cell in your body and breathe out all your stress and tension - don't allow your minde to focus on those stresses, just see them vanishing like your steamy breath does on a reallycold day. Practice every day and in a month you will be able to quiet your mind with your breath. How great that feels!
Good luck and now I am going outside to breath in the full moon!

June 15, 2011 - 5:32pm
By June 15, 2011 - 4:14pm

Stopping the tornado that is my mind.........hmmmm now THAT is my biggest challenge. It is the thing I struggle the hardest with. I can sit and enjoy and notice all of nature, all the while my mind will be on everything else. It becomes a true battle to push "everyday" thoughts out and try to focus on going within or just "feeling" the energy of the world all around me. I do so enjoy the sunrise and sunset though. Sitting outside greeting the world in the morning and saying goodnight in the evening. Now if only my mind would listen to me and shut up for a few minutes I could truly experience those moments as they should be experienced. :-)

June 15, 2011 - 4:14pm
By May 16, 2011 - 3:19pm

Thank you for your thoughts, Kate. I'll incorporate some of your stillness practices into mine.
Breathe. Breathe. Breathe.

May 16, 2011 - 3:19pm
By May 16, 2011 - 10:06am

Thank you Susie. I generally begin each morning with a real sitting down, coffee in hand, outside in the garden. The roses give me a new bloom each day this time of year, the dogs chase birds and shadows, the sun heats my legs. There is no radio, I am not reading.

Likewise we go out hiking alot and that always includces sitting on a rock staring out at the land or into the sky. Yesterday late afternoon the moon, almost full, hung on one hand and directly opposite was the sun. Water ran loudly over the rocks of the little Agua Fria, birds headed to their night-time trees and we sat in quiet watching/feeling the day leaving.

Patience, gratitude and breath.

May 16, 2011 - 10:06am

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Who we are and how we Be in the world, has a direct impact on how we handle our health and wellness issues. Any real experience of our health encompasses the trilogy - the physical aspects, how we think about it, and that intangible 'other' that gives us grace and gets us through. This applies to mental and physical health equally. if we can cultivate our spiritual aspect of the triad, it will be there when we most need it, as we face our own aging and illness as well as when assisting others. This group is here to share resources and avenues to connecting the three, most particularly to embracing and articulating our personal appreciation of Spirit. This group does not advocate for any particular brand of spiritual practice or religion. Simply by sharing your stories, pointing us toward books, articles, poems, art, workshops, or other expressions of Spirit and health you will contribute to each individual's personal journey.


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