A moment of confession...

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..in that bethel of sound

I aroused my dark thoughts into silent invocation.

A small utterance of protest,

Against the darkening pall of wasteful words.

A thrown mass that held a storm

in its gravid deliverance.

The moist air heavy,  

abounding with consequence.

I held my breath,

and dove beneath the weight of sound,

to enter a deep sea of silence.

What do you have to say?

Will it improve on silence?

I have realised of late, that I use chatter like a bridge between meaningful conversation. To all of you that know me well, I can hear you having a chortle-"Well, um yeah, the girl loves a chat." It's true.

Ever since I was a child, I've talked too much. Every teacher said it, some debating whether or not I have anything worth banging on about. I use words to connect, to soothe, to scold, to lift, to lighten, to laugh, to protest, to ponder and to question.

Some days I never stop with the endless drudge of bloody words until I fall exhausted into bed, heaving big old sighs of wiped-out-sick-of-the-sound-of-my-own-voice.

Lately I've become more aware of the sheer volume of waste that pours forth from my muzzle. Just loose cannon blah-blah stuff that interrupts the quiet, it's made me question-

"Do I have anything to say that will improve on silence?"

I've begun to daydream about transforming into the strong silent type. Or at the very least, just the sometimes quiet one.

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The truth is I love silence. The three am quiet that descends on the house. Hallways filled with soft breathing and stillness, a dog far-off. All is far away in that moment. Putting on my coat and stepping outside, black trees against an indigo sky, the gentle light of the moon, the grass seems laid out smooth.

In this soft, languid quiet it's hard to fathom anything other than a peaceful world.

I am reminded of my time as a painter. It took me many years to arrive at a balance point in my work. It's experience and a good dose of confidence that prompts you to leave space in a painting. A place to rest- it's like visual silence.

Why not apply the same principal to speech? "Will it improve on silence?" Or music, television, media. So much noise and distraction and entertainment. We have arrived at some strange place of fear- that silence might hold some uncomfortable truth at it's centre.

But what if all that it held was a profound state of peaceful awareness? Nothing more or less than that. I'm so desperate for a little space to rest...

Quiet.

Shelter from the storm.

IMG_2315It's rare that one is offered the opportunity to learn from not doing. I realised today that I learn more from not doing when it comes to my meditation practice. The lesson speaks loud and clear when I don't attend to stillness.

When I tell myself to 'have a holiday', 'sleep in' or whatever excuse I care to use.

I always take my kids away in January, prior to that Christmas spins through my life and the weeks flap by in it's wake. I drop my bundle for a month or so and the inevitable consequence is a post holiday storm in the teacup that is my mind.

 Chakras, whirling wheels of prana- I am reminded that our energy spirals.

Without my morning meditation I step into the spin of life. I allow myself to bounce around in fear and insecurity. Old habits surface, I become less patient, less certain and my world is quite literally louder. I am a whirlwind, I was born that way. I've ran with the wind in my face for most of my life. Torn up, turned on, trouble for a good part of it. I've brought the lightning and the thunder through more sunny days than I care to remember. I friend of mine once said I could turn the weather with a stick (whatever that meant!).

Meditation allows me to step into the centre of myself. It's my shelter and my sure bet and when I don't do, I experience the storm.

I'm not very good at it.

I'm never sure if I'm doing it right.

But then I don't do for a month....and this is how I learn.

I see the change in me and I know I need to turn in. I sit quietly and do the practice of not doing.

After one twenty minute session I am reminded. I am back and the sun is warming my face. I hear birds and crickets and the trickling water from last nights rain. I breathe into that warm dark place between my eyebrows and I see myself without the tempest and the tumbling. I am infinite energy, love, part of a whole that isn't bordered by my brain or my body.

I am back.

The power of Positive

IMG_1876 Call me crazy but I still believe we can achieve a peaceful world.

I believe in grace and goodness and humanity. I believe we can heal with energy and intention. You might be fooled into thinking I'm a new ager but the truth is far more ordinary with a distinct lack of cheesecloth.

I'm a mum and a partner and dare I say house wife. I'm middle-class, middle-of-the-road, vanilla. The most 'out there' thing about me is that I believe in my ability to make a difference. I believe you can too. We make a difference in our words, our parenting and our purpose. We can spend our thoughts on the size of our backside or healing the pain of humanity.

Too big? Not really. Too simple? Says who?

See a news story that hurts your heart? Send the victims loving kindness and a prayer for their pain. Hear a sad story of a friend's friend? Spare a second to wish them well on their way and the sincere hope that their fortune might change.

Doesn't make a difference? .....or it might.

I'm not a religious person but I do believe in 'prayer'. I believe in a moment spent connecting with the divine. Om Shanti. We send a small energetic wave of peace into the universe. Better that than wishing for a small butt people! Teach your children that their thoughts are powerful tools for progress. Teach them to tidy their thoughts in the same way they tidy their rooms. Find grace in the privilege of parenthood.

I've started to use a mala in my meditation. I found a wonderfully ethical producer of beautiful 108 bead malas. Maha Mala believe in their unique contribution to this process of 'sending out' and it's reflected in their craft. Their work is made with care and a conscience, you can check out the range here. If anyone would prefer to purchase a mala in Australia (and therefore reduce the cost of postage) message me and I will pass on the details of an Australian distributer. It will be in your healing hands in a few days! :)

Join me in sending out a prayer for peace. Most days I perform 'Japa' . I start at the guru bead and pass each of the stones through my index finger and thumb while chanting a mantra for each bead. When I arrive at the lotus pendant I send a prayer for my family. By using a mala in your practice, you imbue the semiprecious stones with the energy of your intention.

In this way your mala becomes a energetic vessel, a holder of your highest vibration and a conduit for healing.

.....and no, as usual, I don't get paid to say nice things about this company. I just believe in sharing the love Folks. :)

 

Why Yoga???

35fba-img_1202 I love yoga. Like most people my experience with yoga began in a local hall on a few feet of recycled rubber. In recent times however, the practice of yoga has carried me off the mat and through to becoming...

Healthy.

Happy.

Whole.

There are of course benefits that are really obvious. I sleep better, I eat more intuitively, I  live more intuitively. I'm stronger, both mentally and physically, wonderful perks that come from regular asana practice.

All of which I was talking to a non yogi  friend of mine about the other day. Her response was to probe a little deeper. "Yeah that's great, but why yoga??"

Umm.....

It took me a little while to gather my thoughts on this very broad question, but here goes my top five reasons.

Yoga has taught me that I am not my labels...

I am not the daughter, sister, mother, artist, writer, partner, funny girl, emotional one, hormonal female, foodie, friend or hot chick. Ok, I may have made that last one up but you get the idea. For most of my life I have walked around believing I was all of this and more. Yoga has taught me that I am none of these things. I am in fact infinite and expansive, a divine manifestation of love in a transient body.

Yoga has taught me to honour my body....

Like many women, my relationship with this bag of bones has been fraught with negativity. I have never in my life treated any other human being as poorly as I have treated my own body. I've endured eating disorders, horrible harming behaviours, ridiculous diets and loathsome dialogue. Yoga has made me appreciate the extraordinary functionality of my greatest claim to humanity...the skin I am in. It's a miraculous, supportive and creative experience of being me. I no longer hate my sturdy thighs because I know they will carry me through warrior poses. I am less concerned with how my body looks and far more focused on how it works.

Yoga has taught me not to impose on others....

Not my children, or my partner. Not my beliefs or my bullshit. I'm so busy with the business of my own 5ft of evolution that I don't have the time to live other people's life for them. That doesn't mean that I'm self-absorbed and unavailable to be a parent, but I don't assume that I know how anyone else should live. Including my immediate family. I actually think my children have been sent to me to teach me a thing or two.

Yoga has taught me to breathe first and ______ later.

Fill in the blank any way you wish.

Yoga has taught me about love.

It has taught me the art of being present with another human being. About the destructive force of small thoughts in a powerful mind. It's taught me to pause when I face conflict and pause when I am at peace. Or laughing. Or doing my five year olds homework. Every day I make a decision to enter a state of loving, in this way I become a manifestation of Love and Light in the world.

Nameste

Michelle xx