Tuesday, July 7, 2015

I found my Tribe

We search,

Sometimes all of our lives we search.  Looking for ourselves, looking for love and understanding.  This search goes so much deeper than someone to sleep next to at night.  It remains locked in the fabric of our souls where many of us have lost the thread of our tribe.  I have begun to look in the corners, around the shut doors and into the past of my family to better understand myself.

During my last workshop at Kripalu Yoga center while deep in meditation I received a message to look further into my family history.  To understand my past so I can better know myself.  This journey is exciting and scary...tracing back names thru marriages and deaths to find the source of my purpose sewn into the places of my history.  Cananda. Abenaki. Vermont.  People of the East.

Aha.  There I am. Now I see.  There is a purpose resting and waiting within each of us.  To understand ourselves better so we can do the work we are meant to in the world.  The Gathering Ceremonies of my tribe ring so powerfully true with me that I could collapse in tears of understanding.  The drum is the heartbeat of the people...is this why I feel I understand Jamaica so well.  Another tribe nonetheless, where Pow Wows are called Reasonings, where Native Americans are called Rastafarians, where still the drum is the heart beat of the people.



Thursday, May 7, 2015

My bearings....an Inner Compass

I used to think my bearings were in my feet, the roots that would never grab a hold.  Then for awhile while giving Thai Massages, well of course in my hands and my ability to feel and heal.  Now I know, my bearings are in my heart.

Trust me I am not trying to get all emotional as I attempt to put words to this feeling I have.  It wasn't until I realized I was trying to hurt myself that this even came to the surface.  By hurt I do not mean cutting or any sort of physical pain.  It was emotional.

Holding onto the past isn't something I am known for, however I do hold onto people.  It's like I cannot let go of the impact they made on me and by removing them out of my life I fear that the person I have become will not be.  Like removing ingredients from a perfect baked good that is left tasting of baking powder and salt.  But I have to start letting THEM go.

You see in this photograph here....my heels are lifted, I am elevating and yet my hands seem to grasp.  In reality it is my heart facing down and pulling me back into a state of perpetual memory.  I know that when resting in memory I cannot awaken to presence.  So wake the fuck up already.

I have my bearings and I am still fighting against it as I dig to find words of pain, photographs and videos that seem to pierce me to the core.  The truth is they aren't even mine.  They don't belong to me they never will.  So I stop grasping.  I peel myself up and I sit still.  The compass within my heart spins, North, South, East, West....just spins until my breath calms....then nothing.  The needle breaks off and I am just here.

Photograph by Susan Currie

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Yoga is my gateway drug to Peace



This morning I felt such heavy energy as a nation mourning the cultural loss of Robin Williams, yesterday morning I felt the heavy energy watching the turmoil and sadness of the situation in Israel, Palestine, Iraq and news of the shooting of Michael Brown.  When I begin my day with the news I can feel the darkness creeping up within me, like an oil spill over my heart.  Thick, dark and heavy the weight of it spills out of my eyes and tears flow as the oil turns to a salty cleansing release.

For me the tears are not enough.  The emotional release feels good. However, my body is still thick and heavy with this dark oily weight deep within.  I step onto my mat and root thru the depth of the earth as I join my teacher Shiva Rea in our Sringara Rasa Sadhana.

Yoga is my gateway drug to peace.

When I escape I go deep within myself, closing my eyes and swimming thru the dark waters of my mind aware how every ripple of breath offers a shimmer of light.  As though I could touch this glistening translucent place within myself.  I leave an imprint of each moment, each breath, each flowing asana I observe the simmer beginning to glisten, then glow...I am igniting the darkness within myself.

Only in Sahaja (free flowing movement) I create a deep release of darkness and sadness.  When I open the gateways of my body I open the walls around my heart.  When I flow with the freedom around me I notice the light within myself.  No matter what your movement alchemy is (running, swimming, dancing, love making....) go there, be there...let that be your gateway to inner peace, light and flowing bliss.

Namaste

If you are interested in joining this movement alchemy please link Samudra Global Community 

Photo by Susan Currie

Monday, June 23, 2014

Wanderlust without a mat!


This year was my 4th year at Wanderlust Stratton Vermont!  I decided for the first time ever to enjoy the festival without my mat.  The first two years I ran around attending every class I could, squeezing every bit of energy out of my body and loving it.  Last year I taught at the festival and had the opportunity to share a different experience thru the lens of a presenter.  This year I decided to experience the festival without practicing on my mat. I LOVED IT.

Wanderlust is truly an experience for EVERYONE.

I decided to be a true Vermonter and spend as much of the festival enjoying the beautiful mountains.  I loved stand up paddleboard (although my board hit a rock and I ended up falling in the lake and entertaining a group of golfers ;).  Meeting new friends at the farm to table dinner next to the mountain before amazing music and dancing the night away to DJ Drez was the perfect first day.  Saturday/Solstice started with a hike/gondola ride and exploring the mountain before a playful AcroYoga class that made me feel connected without the stresses of where to put my mat down.  Renting bikes and going riding around the Sunbowl was amazing and enjoying the rush flying down the Stratton Access road was a highlight. Wrapping up the perfect day with wine tasting and more amazing music and entertainment.  Sunday wrapped up the weekend with vendor visits and shopping while getting the chance to see old and new friends as we all head off on our own true north until next year.  

This year was by far my favorite.  Sharing an amazing house with friends from all over the world each with their own experience to be had yet enjoying the festival together at different times.  As I prepare to make my move to Jamaica and get ready for my upcoming retreat at Jamaica Inn Hotel in September.  I will be sure to add some Stand UP Paddleboard Yoga to the itinerary and keep the Wanderlust Vibe going as I'll always come back to Wanderlust Stratton Vermont.

Thank you. Namaste.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Where Root2Rise began







Root2Rise Where my Journey began

Up until recently I always thought that my roots meant where I came from.  My home I grew up in, family I grew up with and place I am from.  However, whenever I went there or spent time with my ‘roots’ I wasn’t rooted.  This place no longer resonated with my energy and my family although I love them deeply didn’t ground me. 

My roots are where I am when I am still.  My roots are a place of peace, of presence with myself, my home within myself.

There are geographical locations I have felt extremely rooted.  These are spaces where I tap into meditation naturally, where I find myself singing as I walk and chanting as I sit.  One of these places is in the mountains of Jamaica.  I know that many of you think beach when you think of this island but coming from Vermont I found a great connection in these Blue Mountains.

One particular night shines brightly in my reflection of this sensation of rootedness.  I woke up at around 5 a.m. and knew going back to sleep wouldn’t serve me although I could use the rest.  I was leading a retreat at Bromley called Soul Rebel and instead or prepping for the morning class  I decided to walk the hill to a meditation platform.  I remember when this platform was first built and myself and owners (Alex and Johnathan) sat there with wine and snacks to watch the sunset. Such profound moments in the simplicity of nature.

I walked up slowly, with my flashlight and the three dogs following me and sat on the platform.  The stars were still glowing brilliantly and the sounds of the night hadn’t yet shifted to morning birds calling.  I took out a mala made by my dear friend Kristie and began to chant out loud. “Aum Namah Shivaya” It started calm like an earthy whisper, then louder as a purposeful offering, then I began to sob…. a levee broke and I continued until that giant wave washed thru me and left me continuing until I reached the end of the mala….108 I felt healed, rooted, awake and so vibrantly alive I began to sing.  The stars turned to clouds and the sun began to slowly show her pale pink  blanket over the mountains as I stood and rose with her.  This is being rooted.  This is where my journey Root2Rise began.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

My Journey to Kripalu



Virgo moon, evacuation and my journey to Kripalu

Tomorrow we shift into Virgo the moon of humility and surrendering to a power greater than ourselves so that we can let go of control and be more trusting.  This is why I am leading a restorative Yoga workshop, complete surrender in the body helps the mind and emotions.  A time of trust and effortless enjoyment in the journey, even if it throws you surprises that challenge your very essence....below I share a reflection from the most challenging experience of my life where I had to surrender.

My evacuation from Peace Corps Bangladesh was this month 8 years ago, and I am still deeply moved by my time there...this is from a piece I wrote after being evacuated:
The process of reflection is bittersweet like a piece of fruit picked too ripe that puckers up your face then after time becomes sweet like a perfect dessert. I am still in the bitter stage. Feeling bewildered…I am saddened by the things that I put off because I had ‘time’. I always told myself I have two years, I have time, there’s no rush.  But there was no time in the end when the end came, the time was taken away. My feelings about Bangladesh played through the speakers in my home last night as the words of Tracy Chapman floated through the air. 

I’ve seen spirits
I’ve met angels
I’ve touched creations beautiful and wondrous
I’ve been places where I question all I think I know
But I believe
I believe this could be heaven…….
If we have faith in humankind
And respect for what is earthly
And an unfaltering belief in peace and love and understanding
This could be heaven on earth

If you want to read more this will link you to my 1st blog

 

Kripalu...While living in Bangladesh it was a tumultuous time for the country and what helped to get me thru the hartal (strikes) when we had to stay indoors for days was two Yoga DVD's Shiva Rea and Ashtanga. When I was evacuated I took my first trip to Kripalu Center for Yoga to train with Shiva, it was life changing.  I went back years later to live there and volunteer and now I am blessed to be returning to teach and lead a workshop, what an amazing circle.  Joined with dear friend and a lover for service and living Yoga Nadine McNeil we hope you will join us for this powerful experience.

Remember....put nothing in your life off for later.  Live this day fully.