By Kristine Kaoverii Weber | January 23, 2021
I regularly practice a version of Bhūtaśuddhi meditation, and for a part of it, you imagine yourself floating away from the earth and experiencing the vastness of the universe. And although I’ve been practicing this for several decades, I’ve always had a hard time with it. A long silver tether comes into my mind, connecting me back to the earth and as much as I try to sever it, I usually can’t. Don’t get me wrong, I love floating out in space, but something is always there calling me and keeping me grounded.
Maybe I’m a bad yogi.
Or maybe I’d prefer to stay grounded.
I moved to Christchurch, New Zealand on Monday (read more about my journey here ) and interestingly, now when I sit to pracitice Bhūtaśuddhi the tether is gone and I’m falling as free as Tom Petty.
This morning at 3 am, seemed to be an excellent time to do a thorough bed review of the things I need to do and figure out in order to have a life in this new country – the metric system for starters, it will be about 24 today. That is a relatively useless piece of information for my Fahrenheit habituated brain. Then there’s driving on the left side of the road (for which I have one word…terrifying), and also getting used to people saying things to me like “Yes, lovely” without blushing.
Despite the miracles of technology – I’m feeling galaxies away.
Some days this week I felt way too ungrounded to approach my mat – even though I knew it would make me feel much better.
When practice fails, my default is relationship – I text my sister in California and we gush about how much we love The OA on Netflix (Brit Marling is a genius!), my son massages my shoulders, my husband takes me for a hike. Then I can breathe. Also, the trees, rocks and dust all seem to conspire to bring me back down.
People I love + nature is a good combo – then I can get back to my mat and let the alchemy of practice do its thing.
Mindfulness is proving to be key. Sometimes I have extreme and uncomfortable emotions. But, ultimately, they are not me, they are emotions I’m having. I watch myself have them. I wouldn’t be human without them. My job is applying patience and tolerance and ask them to guide me to what I need in the moment.
Moving is a stressful experience, moving to another country is like stress on steroids. So, I am finding my way – navigating through with the support of relationships, nature and practice (plus self-care, humor, optimism, and gratitude). It’s kinda simple – and I have lived with myself long enough to know that it works for me.
I hope this doesn’t come across as complaining, or asking for pity, advice, or encouragement – god knows that the situation in the states is so challenging and so many people are suffering terribly. My intention isn’t to compare, it’s to describe the rawness of an inner landscape and the practices that help me find peace.
When I look down from my vista, down on what I have left and where I am now, I am awed, sad, homesick, thrilled, happy, and grateful. I know that the silver tether will always coil me back down to earth – but somehow, the wind has blown me a little further away.
Join me online February 20-21 – Pranayama and Asanas to Thrive during Challenging Times – check it out here!
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