Just last week I decided the word Unfolding would be my guide. Throughout the next 12 months or so I figured I would discover some wisdom looking through this lens, but I didn’t expect to find so much so soon.
Being & Doing
If you read the clock post (Hurry Up & Rest), you know I’ve been wrestling time and working with control, productivity, and rest for as long as I’ve been a mother (17 years). My perspective began turning a corner by noticing ease and feeling what it feels like to allow. Adding this third practice has given me new eyes.
Ease was something I did, and allowing was something I decided, which also has that sense of doing. But unfolding? This is like allowing times TEN. This isn’t me doing anything. It’s me being undone. And not in a bad, scary way, but in a fascinating, journeying kind of way.
It’s almost like waiting. I’m peeling off the layers of doing and kinda hangin’ back, watching what’s moving where, and who’s doing what, and how things are shaking out. And myself, too; I’m watching how I respond to what’s being revealed, or sometimes what’s being lived in front of me. It is a great work in balancing the being & the doing, the participating & the observing.
So what’s next? Maybe a lot less forcing and a bit more receiving? I don’t know. I’m sort of ready for the moment to come to me rather than always moving into the moment. I’m often saying, Hello, moment. Here I am. I wonder what would happen if I didn’t speak. What would all the moments say to me?
My beautiful and kind teacher often asks us, “How does it feel to be you, right now, in this moment?” I remember the first time I received this inquiry. It was in an iRest Yoga Nidra class, and I was totally snuggled in and supported with bolsters and blankets beneath, beside, and around me. I was so surprised I smiled out loud (not just in my mind) feeling my face move into happiness. What is this sweet thing? Who in the world is asking me what it feels like to be me?
Of course I knew who was guiding our meditation, but this question felt like it was coming from the deep, from somewhere beyond us ~ what does it feel like to be me? Perhaps it’s the moment that is asking me this question, inviting me to see and be seen. Maybe when I’m silent, and allow the moment to speak to me, this is what it offers – an opportunity to see and be seen, which is really to love and be loved.
There is much to explore here. Choose one of the suggestions below that seems interesting or supportive and try it out. Or, make up your own experiment and let me know how it goes.
- Unfolding – what does it feel like to allow a moment to unfold in front of you? During simple daily interactions or activities, notice any impulse to intervene, lead, follow, speak, or act. Pause to notice if the impulse fades, and watch what’s happening around you. Decide to act on the impulse, adjust it, or let it pass. Continue to notice what’s happening around you, as well as what sensations are present within you.
- Feeling You – How does it feel to be you, right now in this moment? Take a few minutes to settle into stillness, breathe deeply, and feel sensations in your body. Instead of thinking about how you feel, experiment with feeling how you feel. Journal or sketch your discoveries.
- Being & Doing – Choose a block of time (an hour, a half day, a full day, a week) and notice how often you sense that you are engaged in doing, and how often you are engaged in being. Both of these ways of living are necessary and one is not valued over the other. We have to do things in order to live, such as plan, gather food, cook, study, work, and so on. These aren’t only necessary, but can be good and fun! What’s interesting to notice might be how much time we spend being alive, rather than doing life. Being alive might feel like rest or being “in the zone” or “in the flow.” “Being” doesn’t mean you are sitting still on a meditation cushion, though that is certainly one of the choices. In fact, you might not realize you are/were engaged in being until you are not.
Remember there’s no wrong or right way to explore these practices. I encourage you to make it fun. 🙂
The Universal Yogi