You give it more Rumi. Rumi is a 12th century, Sufi poet. For example…
Do you know what you are?
You are a manuscript oƒ a divine letter.
You are a mirror reflecting a noble face.
This universe is not outside of you.
Look inside yourself; everything that you want, you are already that.
– Rumi, Hush, Don’t Say Anything to God: Passionate Poems of Rumi
We all need more space. More space to pause, reflect, notice what’s right in front of us. More space in time for friends, family, cookouts, reading (poetry, written or experienced!), dancing, walking slowly by the river, watching clouds… We’re a busy culture here in the DC area. No time to waste watching clouds. But what if your life depended on it? Like it does for water? What if a slow walk by the river was absolutely necessary for your survival?
One of my favorite teachers, Jon Kabat-Zinn, believes and teaches that our lives do depend on living a more awakened existence, being more aware of what’s happening right now. It’s called mindfulness: “paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally to whatever is arising inwardly and outwardly.”
If you are paying attention to what is happening right now, around you, within your eyesight and in your body, you can’t also be worrying about what’s supposed to happen tomorrow or the next day or be fretting about yesterday. When all your senses are focused on this moment, there’s no space for anything else. A wonderful meal for example… the aromas, the presentation, the taste, the person who’s company you’re sharing. Isn’t that enough for one moment? Don’t we spend enough time speading ourselves so thin, doing so many things at once that we hardly have time to catch our breath? How many times have you gotten to the end of a page only to ask yourself what you just read? or catch yourself seeing someone’s lips moving but you have no idea what they said because your mind is elsewhere? Or you go into the other room and completely forget why.
Have you met anyone lately that doesn’t mention how busy, crazy-busy or stressed they are? Wouldn’t you feel better (less stressed) if you could dial things back a bit? Perhaps the slow walk next to the river makes a little more sense now. Although at this point, I would add, that the quality of our lives depends on it.
Stress shows up everywhere now. It’s in our heads, our face, neck, shoulders and back. It’s in our (upset, knotted up, stopped up) stomach. Could it be in our reproductive organs too? I don’t know why not. It’s in our bed (insomnia). It’s in our relationships.
Our lives do depend on becoming more aware, more engaged, more focused and less stressed. Your body needs it. Your mind needs it. You might not even have to eliminate the things that you do, but rather, do them with a greater quality of attention, with all your senses.
There are lots of ways to be mindful, to create space in our lives. That’s what we learn here at Heal from Within. We practice greater attention to our inner life. Come to Fertility Road or the Fertile Mind-Fertile Body Workshop. Learn, practice, live a more peaceful existence, even in the midst of chaos.