Get ready, because we are poised to FINALLY get moving on the changes we have internalized over the last couple of months. I'm Ready, you say? Frustrating that we are wanting to get going but not just yet. For instance, I am singing late 80's R&B songs instead of working on my materials for Saturday! Can't sing and work at the same time (i.e., Baby Come To Me by Regina Belle - great song)! lol. Some steps forward have been taken, but we are not in the full "walk".The clock is ticking off the minutes that are taking weeks to actually happen. This week, another "click" forward which usually begins with a stall. I will be covering what is happening in each of our lives at my workshop on Saturday (9/21/19), but let's just say we are about to take another slow step forward, as a petal of Self begins to drop. In the meantime, deep breaths and do what you can -or just sing ;) . Love to you! xo
We desire change. We pray for change. We inquire with others about impending change. We want to see into the future so we know for sure, there will be change.
However, we usually want it to go a particular way. Yet when it comes...
When it begins to show up, talk with us, reveal to us, poke us, implore us to change, what is our response? I know for me, although I actually have a need to experience continued "growth", I first put on the brakes. I dig in my heels. I clench my tummy. I hold onto the present with both hands. I find reasons to negotiate with change. I ask many questions to maker sure it is in line with my integrity. I take a out a microscope and focus and refocus to make sure I am seeing as much as possible. I ruminate about it. I talk with others about it. All in an effort to stave it off!
As if I have any control. :0
Change stands stock still in front of me. Change continues poking around and moving things, people, ideas, and opportunities. Change packs up the boxes of my life. Change keeps moving forward no matter my fear, sadness, anxiety, excitement, or curiosity.
In the end, all I can do is say "yes." There is no other response. The quicker I can actually BE a yes, the less pain involved. The less deterioration I have to sit in. The less suffocated I will feel as the oxygen of what was, is no longer. It has moved on. It is breathing life into Change.
I’ve learned so much about rabbits in my nearly four years as a volunteer for the Long Island Rabbit Rescue… but I’ve learned even more about people.
I’ve observed volunteers of all ages and walks of life care for rabbits that we’ve saved from brutal neglect situations with inspiring love, yet neglect their own selves—“burning out” from taking on too much or simply not feeding and caring for themselves the way they do our foster and sanctuary rabbits. These women and men would never let a rabbit go hungry or feed a rabbit a less than balanced, nutritious diet, but they don’t take the time to nurture themselves. They make sure every foster and sanctuary rabbit gets daily exercise time to run, hop and play—but they don’t seem to prioritize themselves. As dedicated volunteers, we recognize how much these gentle creatures need us. If only we remembered that we are gentle creatures too. Sometimes we need a little treat or a softer rug to rest our paws too. For my fellow volunteers, I wish you would “cover a shift” in caring for yourself. I am so blessed to work with each of you. Please take care of you, too.
That said, I’ve learned so much in these four years of giving to the abandoned and neglected rabbits of Long Island. From these fragile creatures, I’ve learned that I need space, too. Sometimes there’s nothing more blissful than tossing the task at hand to this side (for me, returning some emails, for the bunnies, a woven grass toy or cardboard tube) and flopping out for a nap.
Read more of Denise Bee's blogs at Believe in Bunnies
"Yoohoo! Where are you? I've been looking for you, but you are nowhere to be found! Why is that?"
As we live our lives, every once in a while, we need to take a look-see to make sure we are not contracting a part of our self-expression that is in hiding out of fear, needing to go from where you are or simply, missing through unawareness. Sometimes, a part of our body gives us notice that we have contracted an important part of our self-expression. Maybe you neck begins to hurt, or your shoulders are aching. Could be that your stomach has developed all kinds of problems, migraines have come to roost, ear aches flare up out of nowhere or your chest is tight, twisted.
Sometimes, our relationships give us notice. We are "not there" most of the time. We don't share as much of our time, emotions, thoughts. Maybe the other is exhibiting this behavior or demanding that we tuck ourselves inside and to be always allowing them to fill the space. Contraction can be painful or numbing and we may actually agree to do it because we think it's the only way.
How about your job? How much of you exists in that space? Do you wrap up most of your self-expression and contain it inside, while you go about your "duties," rushing to get home and finally be yourself? Smacking the alarm as it goes off in the morning, dragging yourself into work, trying to find any reason not to be there.
When we are aware of what our bodies, minds and emotions are telling us, we can actively contract the parts of ourselves that no longer fit with the desire to now expand into a way that makes room for self-expression of who we are now and how we want to live. We connect to our spiritual self to become aware of what/how we need to change. We consciously begin to contract the part of ourselves that no longer fits and find the better space or we expand that part and see how much our present can hold.
The reward, though, is like finally having the space to take a deep breath. The compression from contraction gone. The tension from holding back, released. As our spirit unleashes within, it becomes a magnet, drawing to it all that it needs to experience itself. It becomes a bright white light, revealing the way ahead. It becomes a lantern, lighting the way for others.
What part of you is missing from your life? Allow, expand, breathe life into it.
A Force of Nature
by Pete Kellerman
I am a morning person. The dawn is my quiet time, my personal time when I can revel in solitude.
I take my seat in the dark and await the light of a new day as it gently arrives like an incoming tide – barely noticeable at first. Soon, the darkness is displaced & there is no turning back.
My windows to the world from my perch sit to my right in the adjoining dining room. Orchids line the sills, trees beyond. The play of light morphs with the seasons and evokes feelings that herald first the departure, then the arrival of the quarterly response to the earth's dance with the sun. At this time of year, a warm, melancholy feeling sets in as light dissipates. A sense of loss that will yield to longing.
As I gaze out the window this morning, my memory recalls the vision of falling snow that charmed me so frequently this time last year. Snowfall is a an amazing event. A drop of water forms a crystalline jewel around a speck of dust and survives an incredible free-fall. Whether snow presents itself lightly, feather-like, gentle glide or a heavy rush that can be 'heard,' it is pure magic.
That magic, in my opinion, is perpetuated by its color. Snowflakes are not inherently white. But the spectrum of light that illuminates these wonderful crystals creates a beautiful contrast to the dark of winter, manifested in clouds, a naked landscape and a reclusive sun. Cloaked in a blanket of brilliant white snowfall, the winter dark is mercifully bearable thanks to the accumulation of countless, delicate crystals, like so many grains of sand.
It is a gift to behold a snowfall. Snow speaks without saying a word. The impact on our vision evokes a feeling of calm. The world around us often comes to a halt and we are challenged to be still. To let go of our drive to stay busy and sacrifice the need to let life sink in, be present to its message, to its gift, to the answers to prayers.
Contemplating a spiritual view of this sparkling jewel, a snowflake is easily analogous to the journey of our soul. A gift 'from above,' we are completely unique. As no two snowflakes are alike, so it is with our soul. We are challenged to bridge the paradox of celebrating the gift of our individuality, while standing united with the whole of humanity, where completeness mirrors the sublime beauty of freshly fallen snow. The darkness of winter provides the perfect canvas for the light we yearn for.
The extraordinary warm weather has delayed the onset of winter. I will wait patiently for the snowfall that accentuates the solitude of my morning ritual and ponder the lesson of its absence. A lesson that reminds me how subtly nature comforts my soul. A lesson that inspires a quiet awe - that a delicate, gentle crystal, is such a powerful force of nature.
Yin yoga is finally gaining some recognition in the yoga world. Why? Because of the many extraordinary benefits to your health and yoga practice! What exactly is yin yoga? It is a practice in which we hold the poses for 3-5 minutes. The intention is to safely and appropriately stress the connective tissue (ligaments, fascia and sometimes tendons) in the body rather than the muscles and cardiovascular system (Yang Yoga). In effect, we are placing demands on the tissue, effectively easing bone away from bone so that the tissue that binds them is gently tugged on. The miraculous healing power of the body will make the tissue adapt to lengthening and become more flexible. As we get older, we become more yin like: rigid, tight ,unmoving and less fluid This practice not only enhances our regular yang practice by creating a flexible strength as we move into poses, it keeps the body supple and well protected.
Yin also creates an opportunity for us to manage uncomfortable situations. By sitting in these poses for 3-5 minutes , we take the poses to a position where we feel sensation (not pain), settle in and breathe. You need to let go allowing the body and mind to relax, thereby allowing us to move into a more comfortable state. It reminds us that if we just give ourselves time to breath in any situation, we will ease into managing ourselves and the situation in a healthy way. In my classes I like to incorporate yin in the beginning, stretching and opening the body as we move to our yang practice. This allows for a well rounded class.
As some of you know, I recently had a full knee replacement. The physical therapists were astounded at how quickly I regained my flexibility, breaking up scar tissue and rejuvenating the tissue, tendons and fascia around the knee, as well as the muscles of the leg. This is Yin benefits at its best!
Interested in experiencing Yin? Come to my Yin Yoga workshop on Friday, January 16th. Check out the calendar for registration details!
As I look out my bedroom window this time of year, I can see the trees becoming more bare by the day. After having blossomed its fruits and flowers, shined a green light though its leaves, and reflected the golden sun, they begin to let go. At first, they willingly let the leaves fall. Like a slow-motion rain, they float down and land softly on the fading grass. Once November rolls around, we have a few blustery days and the wind grabs hold of the rest. You could say it helps the trees release whatever it can't seem to let go of. Then, stripped bare of all of its apparent glory, the tree stands before you - naked. Its bark, its skin, for all to see.
I always appreciated trees at this time, for I can really see its true shape. I can see how it is grown or where it has coiled around itself. Has it expanded upward or stretched out? Is it failing and hollow? Did it get enough rain to nourish the transportation of nutrients? Was the soil properly fertilized to bring new and healthy food to the base of the tree, enhancing its strength? Did the sun shine on enough days to fuel the power of the nutritious distribution? Were other trees' branches pushing their way into it or did it push itself into other territory? Now that its outward expression has been released, all that it was able to absorb throughout the year is turned inward. This will define the tree's future.
We are like a tree, in that all that we have took part in and allowed has shaped us. Where we are planted has also shaped our potential. What we have absorbed throughout the year has either nourished us or not, allowing for future growth, stability, stagnation, or deterioration. Did you put your roots in grounding activities that fertilized your health, prosperity, sense of belonging? If not, find the kind of fertilizer you need. Did you surround yourself with supportive "rain" - emotional exchange - that allowed for a flow of wisdom or too much (drama!)? If not, seek to balance the flow. Was there adequate space for you to stretch out, or did others push you back? If not, claim your territory. Were you able to honor others' space so they could grow or did you push your ways? If not, trim unnecessary branches. They weaken your strength and others. Did you expose yourself to the sunlight of learning that brought positive thoughts, beliefs and healthy activities to create vitality in your life? If not, find the sun you need. The sun shines all year 'round.
If the place you are planted cannot support you, find the courage to uproot yourself and move. Maybe to a place with more sunshine, or people that honor your boundaries, or environments that provide opportunities for a healthy mind, body and spirit. For you are free, unlike the tree.
Stand in the center of your tree. Own it and love it with all of your might. No matter how naked you feel, no matter what you need to nourish it, love it with compassion and all the strength you possess. Yes it's there - deep, down, in the core of yourself. Dig if you have to. Move if you have to. Hold on if you have to.
Sending love and light, Lisa
We always say we are seeking peace. Peace of mind seems to be a never ending pursuit. Peace with our bodies, a daily challenge. We are either "succeeding" or "failing" that day. Yet peace in our hearts is the most stable and the only pursuit that will lead us to peace internally. Listening and allowing the heart mind to lead us, direct us, guide us, tell us the truth, is the only peace worth seeking.
Allowing our heart to direct our thought mind on what to focus on relieves us from worry and scattered thoughts, wasted ideas, and wasted time. The thought mind may want to reign supreme in your life and control what goes on, where you go, what you do, what you should think. If it will allow the heart to lead it, thought energy comes into focus to meet the heart's wisdom and becomes a laser beam directed at fulfilling the heart's pursuit.
Allowing our heart to direct our bodies will always lead us to what it is the body needs to function in that moment. The heart will tell the body the truth and if the body will give the heart the benefit of the doubt, it will begin to trust and reap the benefits. The body will then come to relax, trusting that the heart will lead it in the right direction. When the heart's wisdom is honored, the body is no longer used to reveal the pain of its unheard song. The body becomes your trusted vehicle to take you through this earthly experience with strength and groundedness.
All three aspects of self: the heart mind, thought mind and body mind, must all cooperate to lead you forward in this existence in the manner your spirit was charged with. Your heart mind was entrusted with a wisdom, a knowingness, on what that is. Ignore your heart's message and peace will elude your mind and your body.
But you know this already. In your heart is the truth of who you are. If you listen to that truth and trust the heart to lead the mind and direct the body, the intensity of that focus will lead to peace - internal. The heart will be full and whole. You will have achieved what you have been pursuing all of your life - your heart's expression.
The first thing you have to do...is listen.
This October, Lotus Blossom Journeys offers you opportunities to listen through yoga, meditation, Reiki, Archangel workshops, and private sessions. Take a chance and try something - anything -to let your heart know you are listening.
Blossom like a lotus flower - one petal at a time.
Sending you all love and light,