Compassion – for ourselves and others
As cocooning, self isolation, social distancing and our lives are being lived to a different rhythm continues many many of us are experiencing different emotions. I know for myself I am sometimes astonished at my resilience , other times surprised by a moment of noticing beauty such as the picture of the rose above, sometimes moved to tears when I see what frontline workers are going through, or deep sadness when think of all the families touched by sickness or bereavement and deep uncertainty and sometimes fear when I wonder about what’s next, and amazingly sometimes boredom and inertia with the sameness of my days, or other times excitement when I hear talk of the inevitable ‘light at the end of the tunnel’
I have been learning over the past couple of weeks to be kind to myself – to lean in and allow whatever I am feeling knowing that everything passes. So I am bit by bit, as best I can removing should’s an oughts and self judgements and making more space for noticing, allowing and accepting whatever is present. I know that all the wisdom traditions East an West teach us that the route to finding peace is sitting and being, not fighting against whatever is our experienced but rather allowing and accepting and finding beneath it the ever present peace that is ours.
‘Freedom from fear of every kind and realization of peace within is the first step towards a peaceful world’ Satish Kumar
I am so appreciative of the online mindfulness practises being offered which gives me a regular place to sit in the company of others. The one that I am participating in are offered by Mindfulness Teachers of Ireland ( mtai.ie) every ay at 9 am and 9pm, and the Sanctuary ( sansanctuary.ie) three days a week.
I offer my own mindfulness practise space via Zoom every Sunday evening @7pm. It is an open invitation for anyone to drop in any Sunday for some guided practise together. To join , download the app zoom and use the link zoom.us/j/643674866.
Though I am actually very busy with a new piece of work that at present requires me to do many hours of reading I am also spending time in the garden . I have been re reading a very favourite book called ‘Soil.Soul.Society – a new trinity for our time by Satish Kumar above. For him peace comes through right relationship with soil first, then nourishment for the soul and then compassion through our sense of interconnectedness with all beings. In a nutshell, he proposes that caring for the natural environment (Soil) , maintaining personal wellbeing (Soul) , and upholding human values ( Society) are the moral imperatives of our time. ‘ There is no one as patient, resilient, forgiving and generous as the soil ‘ Satish Kumar. I am lucky I have a large garden always in need of work and attention but I think it is also possible to nurture this relationship with the soil through admiring the wonder of a blade of grass, a magnificent tree or a carrot that was grown in soil.
Einstein wrote ‘ A human being is a part of the whole, called by us “Universe” , a part limited in time and space. H/he experiences herself, her thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest – a kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us ,restricting us to our personal desires and to affection to a few persons nearest to us.Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole nature in its beauty. Nobody is able to achieve this completely, but the striving for such achievement is in itself a part of the liberation, and a foundation for inner security‘ ( as quote in Full Catastrophe Living by Jon Kabat – Zinn.
‘I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.‘ Satish Kumar
Satish invites me to remember that all beings are interrelated and bound together through common evolution and a common origin. All people share a common humanity. I think I was reminded of his book because the Corona 19 virus seems to be brings us also to this sharp realisation that we are all interconnected and interdependent, and so my compassion which starts with myself so that no matter what the outer circumstances of my life I connect with the deep peace that is within me this same compassion naturally flows out then to include the whole world. And so this is what I ( and I am bold enough to suggest all of us) am called to now – being mindful of others, aware of the struggles of others, sending loving kindness and offering service and support when we can.
Deep Peace – a Celtic blessing
Deep peace of the running wave to you
Deep peace of the flowing air to you
Deep peace of the quiet air to you
Deep peace of the shining stars to you
Deep peace of the gentle night to you
Moon and starts pour their healing light on you
Deep, deep peace.
Upcoming events – TRUAMA SENSITIVE MINDFULNESS EVENTS DURING COVID19
Free Sunday Mindfulness Practise CircleA weekly time for mindfulness practise and to support each other.
Every Sunday beginning Sunday March 22nd from 7 to 7.45pm
Join URL: https://zoom.us/j/643674866
Feel free to join any Sunday and the same link can be used every week.
Saturday May 30th
Online Mindfulness Practise Workshop
I am delighted to offer a three hour online Mindfulness Practise workshop on on Sat May 30th . I have participated in this workshop online myself, and I am happy that it is a really resourceful, grounding experience. We work from 10 am to 1pm with a 30 minute coffee break. For more information and to book your place please visit https://www.mindfulfacilitation.com/workshops-retreats/
From Tues June 2nd
Online Mindfulness and Compassion Course
Beginning on Tuesday June 2nd from 7pm to 8.30pm and continuing for eight Tuesday evenings until Tuesday July 28th. The full day of practise which will also be online will take place on Saturday July 11th from 9.50am to 3pm. For more information and to book your place please visit https://www.mindfulfacilitation.com/workshops-retreats/