Loving-kindness meditation, post-moon-sequence, 11.30 am, 23rd April, 2012:

Right…crown of head…focus.  Quite quickly I feel a gentle stirring of something.  It starts to rotate, generating heat.

Loving kindness, loving kindness, or is it love-and-kindness.  Right, let’s go through the list.

1) Me – yeah yeah…go me!  Doesn’t last for long, but better than it used to be.

2) Person I love – mum, Sofia, wait…no…back to my mum. What about Ish and Eug; Anna and Tamsin; Lady McBeth?  Am I supposed to be seeing images of them?  What’s she wearing?  Pedro, Brian Cox (swirling in crown of head getting stronger and stronger…feeling a bit dizzy).  What if I just put everyone in a room?  There, that’s better.  Dan, Sarah, Dad, Sue, Chris.  Awww, Nan and Granddad.  Wonder how they’re getting on?  All their faces looking up.  Love and kindness to all of you.

3) Person I don’t know that well – Girl who works in the cafe next door.  She seems a quiet, not entirely happy sort.  Loving kindness to you, loving kindness to you.

4) Person I hate – Mr X.  YOU FUCKER!  Wait no…love and kindness, love and kindness, or love-ing kindness.  (Swirling energy dims).  No come on Laura, stay with it.  Love and kindness….grrrrr.

5) The body – right, now’s your chance to shine…deep breath… I love you hips! (Wince).  Love and kindness just to you, and the viper…just as you are!

6) The environment, everything around me, and beyond… ducks, chickens and goldfish…the rain outside.  What?  No Wales today?  I always think of Wales.

Breathing happily, chest lifting up, crown of head warming, warming, and then slowly it begins to dissipate.

AHHHHH!  I stretch out my arms above my head, smile to myself, yawn loudly, and open my eyes…Welcome to my universe!

It seems that I’m reaching the end of my writing stint.  Words are drying up, and what perfect timing that is.  Tomorrow I take the night-train back to Bangkok, and then onto Burma – the next leg of my adventure.

I know these last few blogs have all got a bit heavy.  I’ve felt pretty drained and deflated after each one.  Good – because I’ve given voice to things that I’ve been wrestling with for a long time, but also a bit unbalanced.  Yeah, it was hard work and at times gritty and uncomfortable, but it was, in its entirety, one of the best things I’ve ever done.

Looking back there are so many wonderful and ridiculous moments…

  1. The awkward silence in the shala when Denise (yoga baby) piped up with, “Matthew, what’s ejaculation?”
  2. Pedro rocking up to practice on the first day in just his pants.
  3. Sofia, describing the man she was attracted to: “he looks like Jesus Christ.”; Petra, flummoxed, “But Sofia, they ALL look like Jesus Christ!”
  4. Janni saying, in all seriousness, that Jesus was the son of Father Christmas.
  5. Matthew telling us that we are all perfect and whole, just as we are, right now, and if anybody says anything other than that…be it a teacher, a counselor, whoever – then we’re to walk away.
  6. Bam-Bu!  Basically everything about it.  The food, the shakes, the guys who work there, the weird Ewok dogs, the conversations, the amazing breeze up on the platform, the hours of perving on toned, tanned and tattooed Jesus/Elf/Water-world variations of MAN.
  7. Chess and Backgammon marathons with Pedro, and my afternoon of training with the chess master – Rafa.  I play like I live apparently – in defense.  I gotta change all that…play to win.  Take risks.  You lose, so what.  Play again.  (never did get to beat Pedro…dammit!)
  8. Chakra meditation:  all in a circle, eyes closed (I hope), fingers pressed on our perineums to engage our Chakra number ones (wrong day to wear a skirt…) and thinking, Christ – if my friends could see me now.
  9. Massage.  Ahhh…all those massages.
  10. “HUMPH”……..”UGHH”………”HUMPH”……..”UGHHHHHH!”  The ongoing Sharapova/Serena Williams tennis match between Thea and myself in practice.   Particularly prevalent in Marichyasana, Backbending, and ALL of the Lion Sequence…
  11. “Today’s the day” – Handan mouthed as she pointed me out for the handstand demonstration.  I did it!  I fucking did it!
  12. “Matthew….help….me…” the muffled voice of the comically vulnerable Serge aka “Robocop”, trapped in Supta Kurmasana.
  13. The night that we danced at Eden.  Thea, Pedro and me.  How stiffly, and so-very English, my night began.  Awkwardly shifting my weight from one foot to the other, creaking hips, embarrassed smile on my lips, practically clicking my fingers in front of me, NOT to the beat….to hair let loose, shirt tied up, sweat pouring, wooden floors shaking, feet pounding, as I jumped about, hands waving, bonding mid-air with an Arabic prince, to the wonderful energy of a tribal tune.
I could go on and on.  Serge’s witches (or “beetchis”) and other eccentricities; Jo – the Russian spy; moving in with Sofia and our midnight chats and 6 am swims; Naw and her kittenesque squeak in the lion sequence…
I felt so sad when we all said goodbye, like it was the end of something.  But Tina reminded me of something that Matthew said time and time again…this is just a hello.  Through the process of articulating this experience over the past week, I’ve had a growing sense of just that….this being the beginnings of something.  I’m not sure what just yet, and I really, genuinely don’t feel the need to think too much about it.
Prem told me at the end of my time with them in Bali, that I was on the right track and to just keep doing what I’m doing.  The difference between the me then, and the me now, is that at that time I think I needed somebody to tell me that, whereas right now, I can feel that I’m on the right path…right here, in the centre of me.
Now – it’s time to get back out there and live in the moment again.  Thank you to Matthew, from the bottom of my heart, and to everybody on the course.  What a wonderful time we had.

Namaste Mo Fo’s!

May all beings be happy.

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