The meditation mantra of the month has been the word “seva”; gift or service without expectations. In the beginning of April I thought mostly about being the giver and being able to donate money or time; which are both a pretty valuable resource in my life that I don’t give away too lightly. For probably the first half of the month I read this quote by Woodie Guthrie that I love,
It is a reminder to me that I have time & money to give not by my own doing, but because; others pay me to teach yoga, because there is a school with teachers I trust to teach & be with my kids during the day, because I have a safe, warm place to sleep so I have enough health to give of my time. My resources & independence are absolutely In Dependence of the whole community, so that just as Martin Luther King Jr. reminds us (or maybe haunts), “we are tied together in a single garment of destiny…what effects one directly effects all others indirectly.”
That single garment of destiny is in really rough shape right now. It needs some serious mending. And it seems that there has been so much tearing & fraying, that I (and maybe you too?) know I have started tuning out FEELING the connection to one another. After mass shootings there is less horror and more “I don’t even know what I’m feeling. I’m numb.” We are so used to ignoring the sensations of anxiety or fear or sadness or disappointment that we don’t even recognize how we are feeling at all. Is it just me????
There is an actual name for this…alexithemia — it is a condition in which you cannot recognize your emotions. You don’t know how you are feeling. I think we also have started to embrace a wee bit too much of this, so that we don’t have to FEEL how disconnected and hurting we are. I get it. It makes sense. It is hard stuff being a human being feeling real things these days.
But, what are we missing out on??? What is the effect of dulling our “negative” sensations on all of the rest of them….like the sensation of Relief? Forgiveness? Joy? Hope? Laughter? Do we lose touch with some of them too?
The next Daily Bread Yoga Saturday Morning Retreat is called Return to Your Senses! And we are going to try and do just that. In the safe space of community, quiet, and the practice of yoga we will let ourselves feel the feelings, smell the smells, hear the sounds, and taste it all. We need to figure out how to turn our senses back on and let ourselves feel the connection & the disconnection. So, we’ll start where we are; In Our Bodies.
The retreat is Saturday, May 5th, 9a.m.-noon at Philo Presbyterian Church. The cost is $20. Please let me know if you can be there! I hope you can.
Peace on your head, you. I hope you can feel that like a little kiss on your noggin.