Balance… + tea + muffins

I am here. We are here. Balance and grounding…

Many of us have recently been forced to re-evaluate things. The pandemic has forced many to stop, pause, quarantine…  find our home. Recently my wife, kids and I were forced to literally ‘go home’ – after one day on the other side of the country on holiday, we returned to the ‘shire and spent the rest of our holy-day at home. Self isolating for 14 days. (hence this crazy post)

A window in Whiteparish – before isolation.

‘if one could only suspend disbelief forever’.

Once again we break routines and re-evaluate things we take for granted, and find ourselves disbelieving the things we believe in. A few years ago, after seeing a play at Leicester’s Curve, I wrote ‘if one could only suspend disbelief forever’.  We usually do this daily, we believe the stories that swirl around us. It’s when the competing stories begin to confuse our assumptions that things might start to wobble… but what are these beliefs, the everyday things we trust in?

I have written before how as a student of Art and Performance, we were taught to deconstruct. To help discover the links between the ‘object’, the ‘subject’, and its ‘meanings’. But deconstruction still leaves us with the deconstructed building blocks, the stories, the images, and assumptions.

JPR 1995
JPR Visual Art 1995

We are not these things!

I have always held on to the concept of I AM. Images, which breed assumptions, which create motives. We are these things, but today I had a sudden self-epiphany… In the meta-modern world yes, we are made up of these things, but at heart, at root, at our core, we are not these things!

In a novel recently, I read a passage describing individuals living before our culture took hold…

“It was the huge elemental forces – the open sky, one day azure blue, the next grey, lowering and savage, the ridges that swept endlessly to the horizon like a sea, the whistling breezes and the great silences – it was these things which both frightened him and comforted him as well…”

Sarum, Edward Rutherfurd

To truly deconstruct, perhaps we need to clear the ‘stuff’ off the table, wipe the slate clean and then re-embrace things. Isolation has caused many to go without the things we hold (or that seemed) important.

At our core (or heart) we are so much more than our IAM.

It’s easily said, but not so easily done.  However, it can be easily done, and it’s not so easy to say!

While ‘doing’ some Yoga with Adriene today I realised that I AM ‘here’. All I AM is here. The fact that ‘we are here’ is a big deal! Isn’t it!? 

Adriene’s yoga has many levels, but for me at the moment, it’s about an awareness of breath, posture, stance, etc – ‘personal presence’ before ego and assumptions cloud the mind. It requires constant attention to ‘notice’. In her Youtube series ‘Home’ ’30 days of yoga’, Adrienne Mishler has a clever casual personal way of repeating words and phrases around the essential principles involved in yoga asanas. 

For example, today the simple Anjali Mudra (or prayer hands). It’s a posture of composure, of returning to one’s core/heart.  As you bring your hands together at your center line, you can help activate a recognition of re-balance. It leads to a lot more than that, but it’s a good start.

Anjali Mudra

Many of our personal wobbles relate to physical, mental, emotional imbalance, dis-ease, di-stress, instability …

If we can deconstruct and free ourselves from the power of our culture’s images we might notice our presence, seek to rebalance ourselves, and accept the powerful simplicity of life’s energies… then compassionately rebuild.

Personally the theorising and deconstruction only goes so far, the real life changer is to stop,  ‘show up’, and breathe…  

  • Slow down… Breathe… Trust… Balance… 
  • Take time for yourself… embrace the moment…
  • Breathe in through the nose – inhale gratitude, compassion…
  • Breathe in through the nose – inhale gratitude, compassion…
  • Exhale out through the mouth… gratitude, compassion…
  • Stretch, press, draw in the energy…
  • Head over heart…

Adriene says “Take good care of yourself so you can take good care of others”… Thanks Adriene.

Marcel Proust wrote “Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.”

Here’s to knowing ourselves better,
so we might take care of others,
and garden a few souls if we get the chance.

Oh, yes… tea and muffins from friends help too!

By julesprichards

Anchoring in the shire, with family, friends, coffee and cheese… always looking…