What does your body mean to you? What do you use your body for? Do you deny it? Do you care what it feels like? Do you pay attention to the sensations in your body? We know that our bodies are temples, we know this because the enlightened ones tell us that. We know also that our bodies are sacred, again because the enlightened ones tell us that. But what does your body mean to you. Do you have the courage to sit with the pain that exists somewhere. To ask it, why, then to know?
I got kicked in the ribs in a rehearsal two weeks ago (it was an accident). It was surprising, but initially it didn't hurt and I kept dancing. I was actually kind of excited to have been kicked (I know that sounds weird) but it was something so out of my regular experience, something new, and on a new moon solar eclipse, so I knew there was a bigger message hidden within the event. I got kicked in the ribs. The pain increased over the next three days, it began to affect my ability to laugh, to cough, to sneeze - all of these things actually became quite painful. My ability to lay down or sit up was entirely compromised. It hurt to bend to the side, to pick things up, to move.
I am not one who takes well to not being able to move, because I use my body to calm my mind. So, I did some yoga. I basically tripled the pain I was in before. What on earth was my body saying to me. Yes, it was an external force that impacted my internal reality, but regardless of the cause of the pain, there is pain in my body, there is a lot of pain in my body. What do I do with this? What I want to do is yoga, I want to go for a run, I want to do sit ups, I want to dance, I want to use my body physically because that is how I deal with my discomforts. I find reprieve in moving my body from the pace and anxieties of my mind and the challenges that surround my daily life. But what is the message? what is being communicated to me through this pain in my body, it is literally stoping me from moving.
I need to find a new way. My old habits and patterns and ways of being and moving through my anxiety are no longer working, they are not enough.
s... l... o... w... d... o... w... n...
What has happened in my slowing, the anxieties got louder - the discomfort has temporarily grown.
My body needs to heal, my mind needs to discover itself discovering my heart. So today I sit, I have been still for hours. I have meditated, I have had a skype session, I have fallen asleep - I have read poems, I have thought about my future, I have thought about the people I love and when I get to see them next. I have slowed down. It feels weird. It feels weird to accept that for the next three weeks (according to google) I will not be able to exercise. It is uncomfortable not to be able to rely on my regular routine, it is uncomfortable to have to find a new way to breathe.
Ultimately it is about balance, once I have recovered I will be able to balance my exercise with my new found mindfulness and meditation practice, thus having created an evolved practice to calm my mind and to be present.
Listening to our bodies is not easy, because it means we might have to be willing to change. To change our lifestyle, to change the way with think - which ultimately can change our friends, our environment and our whole world. But if you have pain in your body, it is a result of a tension within you that needs to be released. Something you need to pay attention to. Find a way to connect to that pain, to hear that pain, to accept the pain to release it, so that you can grow.