Going into the Heart

I arise at the first light of day to sit for my morning hour of meditation, followed by espresso and a peach. I check online briefly, and catch up on what is happening in Iran...

I am amazed at the incredible solidarity of so many in the vast online community with the people in Iran, and bowled over by how social networking sites and communities are enabling us all over this planet, to connect in a much deeper way. The world is truly getting smaller...

I long to make a stop at the river to visit, and see how it is after a few more days of rain. But while I will not merge and become with it on this day, I will cross it and find spiritual nourishment on the other side of its banks...

It is a quiet morning, and I ride to the other side of the river to take an Anusara Yoga class with my friend Cheryl, who is magnificent, and who has the most contagious and joyous laughter I have ever heard.

She invites us to go into our hearts and to express a quality of the heart in our practice - to such an extent - that those around us would be able to ascertain what quality we chose to embody.

We are led through a wonderful sequence that feels delicious and empowering - and which prepares us for for inverting later in the class. We work with handstand and we are invited to embody courage as a quality of the heart, and everyone rises to the occasion.

Many beautiful spiritual gems are dispersed as blossoms here and there throughout the class - gifted to us by a teacher whose spiritual practice shines through in every aspect of her teaching, her presence, and her compassion for her students. She reminds me once again of why I love coming to Willow Street Yoga - and why I love Anusara Yoga in particular - for it is a yoga that embraces everyone - and every "body" - accepting and respecting all who come to the mat to share the practice.

She ends class by deeply honoring her students and recognizing them as her own teachers, and shares with us this exquisite poem by the yogini Danna Faulds:

With You

"Consort of clouds, beloved
of the flowers, no boundaries
confine my flight or wanderings.
Slipping through the cracks in
your armor, I am with you, calling
you to come forth and dance with
me in the downpour.

My energy spills out of you no
matter what your circumstance or
mood. Find me in joy or in the
darkness of your worst hours.
Welcome me. Throw your arms
wide and celebrate each time you
find my fragrance in the lilacs.

I am anywhere you focus your
awareness. Call on me, remembering
that you are essential to the universe,
your uniqueness no less precious than
the stars. If you forget, I'll remind you
with a whisper or a dream, or a touch
so soft you'll think a butterfly
just landed on your arm."

I go into my heart as I listen to these words, strengthened by the light of the shared inner beauty of those present in this class and my beautiful yogini friend and teacher. I listen to these words, and think of communing deeply with the Divine as I have been called of late - gently lured to sit for ever increasing lengths of time...

I think of those that I have loved well and deeply - especially those absent from my heart in some way...

I bow to my teacher this morning, a radiant being, and to my heart - as I am reminded once again, that there is truly no separation...

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