A Vessel of Deep Receptivity

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Cuero by Saguayo

This body that lies within my soul

and this heart that connects me to the Divine

were created

to listen,

to feel,

to touch,

to hear,

to taste

to know…

to receive and respond.

A generous inhale infuses spirit into these cells.

A full exhale releases love back into the whole.

I was created to be

a vessel of deep receptivity.

::

some rights reserver under cc2.0 – by saguayo

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Body and Place

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Place.

As I’ve pondered this word (today’s blog challenge prompt is ‘The best place’), I’ve thought of many places I love:

walking in Tilden Park (I live across the street from this wild heaven)

on the dance floor on Sunday mornings at 8:30 in Sausalito with 149 other sweaty and passionate 5Rhythms’ dancers

sitting on the floor in a puppy pile with my three grandchildren, 2 great-nieces and 1 great-nephew on Thanksgiving

doing yoga in my sister’s (the one and only Molly Fox) incredibly physical, and joyously lyrical yoga class

listening intently to my clients on our coaching calls as they share the most intimate details of their ‘one wild and precious life‘ (prostrations to Mary Oliver)

sitting in meditation with the most amazing teachers Lynn Barron, Amma and Adyashanti

simply being with Jeff, the man I share my life with.

I am struck by these things:

how crazy fortunate I am to be living the life I am living

and

how integral being in my body is to the ability to ‘be’ in any place and ‘know’ how it feels to be there. My body is my doorway to place, because I experience place through my senses. I drink place in with my eyes. I touch place with my heart. I feel place through the cells of my body.

and

The ‘best place’ to ‘be’ in is in this body, this sensuous female body that feels deepy and loves completely.

Now, don’t get me wrong. It hasn’t always been the best place to be. In fact, for many years I wanted nothing to do with this place. I stayed way up in my head, or at times, was nowhere to be found even in the vicinity my body.

Now, after much ‘work’ and lots of great body practices, I know differently. This female body is divine. Not just mine. All female bodies are divine.

I remember being at and Adyashanti retreat when he was speaking about the divine nature of all of life. As I listened, I had an epiphanic experience (fancy way of saying an ephiphany, because I love the word ep⋅i⋅phan⋅ic). I suddenly knew, in the embodied way, that my female body, and all female bodies, are divine. We bring life into life in a myriad of forms. Our female bodies are gateways to this amazing thing we call life. If we are in our bodies, we feel deeply, we connect with the earth.

As this was satsang, when the time came for people to share experiences or ask questions, I raised my hand, was called upon, strode up to the mic, and said, loudly and clearly, “I just got that this body (pointing to mine) is divine”. I suddenly heard a chorus of female gasps arise around the room. I obviously wasn’t the only one who had missed this message growing up.

So in wondering about place, I now see, and taste and touch and hear and feel, that body needs to be in conscious relationship with place, any place, to know it.

As Mary Oliver writes,

Wild Geese

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting–
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

This post is part of Gwen Bell’s Best of 2009 Blog Challenge
Day 11: The best place. A coffee shop? A pub? A retreat center? A cubicle? A nook? A BODY!

Image credit: Place of Healing, by Mara on Flickr

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Truth, the Body & the Sacred Feminine

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Truth is an interesting word. It has all sorts of baggage with it. My truth, their truth, his truth, her truth, THE TRUTH. We have been taught from a young age that there is a truth, but that it lies outside of ourselves. But in the most simple way, the Truth is just what it is. As Eckhart Tolle says in his book, A New Earth, “The Truth is inseparable from who you are. Yes, you are the Truth. If you look elsewhere, you will be deceived every time.”

We are accustomed to looking outside of ourselves for the Truth. The truth of how to be, who to be, how to act, what to do, etc. etc. I have heard from many, many women the question (or one in a similar vein), how can I bring my whole self, my sensuality, my loving side and my intelligence and wisdom to everything I do? To my home, my relationships, and (the place that causes the most distress) to work.

The Truth is that you are already the Truth. The Truth of your Being is what you are. This Truth is alive within your female body. Bringing all of you to all that you do is a matter of realizing what you are and seeing the ways in which your Voice of Judgment (VOJ or ego as some call it) keeps you from expressing the Truth of the wholeness of what you are.

“What is your truth? Ask your heart, your back, your bones, and your dreams. Listen to that truth with your whole body. Understand that this truth will destroy no one and that you’re too old to be sent to your room.” John Lee from Writing from the Body

As John Lee writes, listen to the Truth of what you are with your WHOLE BODY. Learning to be in the body, to feel the aliveness that moves within it frees up this Truth and its expression. Feeling all parts of the body helps to awaken this Truth within, helps to awaken a true authenticity that is You. Then, all actions flow from within.

The stretch for women is to feel the body without judgment. We have learned, in one way or another, to judge ourselves by the way we look. But allow the body to be what it is…a sensing device for the Truth of what you are.

So, as John Lee writes, ask your whole Being, “What is my Truth?” And when you ask, Listen. Then, live it, speak it, express it. Be it. This is creativity. This is the source of true leadership. This is how we will once again discover the Truth of the Feminine.

I have found a practice to be the best way to invite investigation of my Truth through my Body. My practice is dance, specifically Five Rhythms by Gabrielle Roth. The dance has taught me well how to love my body and how to be in it without feelings of self-loathing or denial of the depth of the sacredness of my Being. The dance has re-introduced me to the Sacred Feminine that is within me and within all of Life. The dance has taught me to trust myself, to trust Life and to trust womanhood and the humanity of woman.

What practice do you have to bring your Being back into wholeness?

The Sacred Feminine World, image by JoanLovesPaper on Flickr

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