There’s no denying it, being a human isn’t always fun. We have this incredible dichotomy in this existence, and in our very beings. We’re primal and ferocious with an amazing capacity to express and experience love and compassion. Millions of intangible thoughts happening within a wondrous vessel. A vessel capable of experiencing multiple sensations at once.
Until my Nia practice began, I was completely unaware of how much time I spent in thought – writing virtual to do lists, questioning past decisions, reliving conversations and stressing about tomorrow. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still in my head quite a bit, but there is more awareness of when I am and how it feels in my body. For a long time I had this odd relationship with my body – like it was my little slave to punish as I saw fit, never really thinking about how my body was responding to the thoughts running around in my head or how much of the present I was missing.
In movement, there is a harmonization of the body and mind. A real opportunity to kick aside all thoughts, worries and stresses and really notice and feel the sensation of what it is to be in your body. To really be in wonderful and in awe of our bodies and senses.
Today’s work involved a lot of “doing” as well as worrying. Worrying about the unknown. Finally, I forced my mind to listen to my aching body that sat hunched over a computer all day and step away from this hamster wheel by practicing Nia. The dancing, moving, flowing, vocalizing, striking, kicking, all of these things helped release the build-up of pressure of the day. But, it wasn’t until I stepped outside into the dusky evening that I felt the angst completely melt. Through my amazing body and senses, I was able to to shift into pure wonder and appreciation of the moment. My evening stroll with RakSi, the wonder dog, began by an envelopment of warmth and moisture, bird music permeating the air, light reflecting upon massive puddles. On I walked, up the hill, sensing the strength in my legs, the softness of the leather leash in my hand. Ah yes, this is what it is to be present, I remember now. What a gift this life is. A “now”, bursting with green and amazing little bugs illuminating unexpected spaces. On and on, images, sounds, textures. Then one of my favorite senses was indulged. My nose shamelessly burrowed, drinking deeply from the pure ecstasy of a gardenia. As I began to head back home, and my mind started doing it’s “thang”, when a breeze brought me back one more time to the here and now with a beautiful embrace of coolness, filled with the glorious scent of fresh lavender. Quite seduced, I stroked the compact and fuzzy buds bringing fingers to nose and inhaling to my pinky toes. Yes this is now. This is what it is to be fully alive and enjoy the moment. Thank you. Thank you for this. Thank you for the reminder that there are still opportunities for bliss even in the times of fear and suffering.
As you find yourself a slave to your thoughts, caught up in “getting somewhere”, I invite you to take just a moment to notice how this feels in your body. When you are ready for a shift in your thoughts and emotions, consider indulging your senses in a new way. There is great wisdom in the saying, take time to stop and smell the roses. This summer allow your senses to be utterly and shamelessly seduced. Consider that you always have a lover, whether there’s one lying in your bed or not. Gardenias, dragonflies, lightning bugs, peonies, birds, trees they are my lovers. They remind me that I am beautiful just by simply being.