They say that showing up is the hardest part,
especially in our “busy” world.
Today I showed up with a candle and fixed my gaze upon the gentle organic shape of the flame.
Pure, gentle beauty.
My eyes and mind transfixed on the simplicity of it all.
My inner mind whispers,
Thank you for showing up today.
I typically don’t use a candle when I meditate, but I had just received my Michigan made beeswax candle and used them last night for my full moon ceremony. It felt only right to continue to honor that flame. It was warm and inviting, which means a lot in a Michigan winter. I have been contemplating the space that fire holds, as it’s been a constant companion in my Cacao Ceremonies over the past few months. honoring the flame that transmutes, shifts energy, burning away the things that no longer serve. The fire lives with in all of us, and we live in the fire. The eternal flame of light. We are made of the elements.
Nothing to do but sit
I sat for 10 minutes this morning with no guidance, just me and the flame. The time seemed to pass by quickly and I appreciated the gentle way of waking up, just sitting and relaxing into the space of our home. I really love the morning, it is gentle, slow and the world is just barely waking up. We are in our mammalian cycle with slower brain waves, just coming from sleep. We are impressionable during this time and what we do during this part of the day really seems to stick and make a lasting impact. It all feels so loving. Instead of racing to the phone and wondering, who is paying attention to me. We learn to let go of all that. Just be ourselves. Let go of that reward center way of being and just bask in the stillness of morning.
My meditation practice has shapeshifted over the years as I come to learn more and more about my self in this time and space. In the past I mostly relied on apps like Headspace and Calm, both incredible outlets for those stepping into meditation. They are often guided and rooted in observing the thoughts. Calm often has some great under themes and a daily meditation, which I took a lot of pride in being able to “complete,” for over 100 days straight. It has been nice to let go of that gripping. Another great option is Insight Timer which is free and has a plethora of different styles and teachers.
Currently I am involved in Yoga Teacher Training with a wonderful studio in Detroit, MI (Detroit Yoga Lab) and have had the chance to be exposed to various types of meditation. It is my hope as a teacher to share these with others when the time is right. To help them feel grounded in their own body, mind, space, without judgement. To simply be. It has been really awakening to sit with the self through so many different forms of mediation. My most recent favorite was a meditation focusing on the question, ” Who am I?”
The meditation started with,
I am not my hair
I am not my eyes
I am not my emotions
I am not my body
I am not my pain
And then continued to gentle guide you through various elements of the self, what we are and what we are not. Creating rhetorical questions to contemplate without too much gripping, what we really are. It was a really lovely space to think about the pure essence that we all inhabit outside of our physical form. It felt grounding, like coming home to the real you.
So what does mediation mean?
Simply put, To sit with
Meditation is the act of consciously observing your mind, not gripping to any one thought or feeling, just simply noticing. Allowing it to be there. Headspace has a really great animation that likens observing the thoughts to watching clouds, we just simply watch them pass by. Just noticing.
I recently heard a quote from Dr. Joe Dispenza in which he stated something along the lines of, “If I show up for myself in the morning, the rest of the day is easy.” I resonated deeply with this because it really rang true for my life. When I show up for myself, I am showing up for the world. There is no greater thing we can do than cultivate space for ourselves. We are molding our own energy every time we show up and just sit. That energy is what we bring to the table when we interact with others and our world.
Let’s look at the opposite end of the spectrum, which might be quite common, this might be how you start your day…
A person wakes up, checks their phone is bombarded by news, media, dopamine rushes, emails, to do lists, etc. They instantly feel the pressure of the modern day. They quickly grab their coffee and immediately check out. Fast paced life. Running most of their day on autopilot and numbing out with constant checks of the phone, caffeine fixes, sugar etc.
Let me describe an alternate reality…
You wake up steeped in gratitude, “wow I am alive”, it’s another day to be me. Laying in bed thinking of a few things your grateful for. Taking care of your body lovingly and drinking a nourishing glass of water/water with lemon. Using some time to stretch and feel into your body, followed by some time to sit quietly and meditate for as long as you feel you have the ability to. Journaling about your experiences, maybe your dreams, something you want to work on etc. (The Artist’s way suggests The Morning Pages–writing 3 pages as soon as you wake up, so you have officially cleared the brain clutter :D) You would feel nourished. You would feel that you really truly love yourself and your experience.
I have lived both realities and I can firmly say, I am much happier in the second option.
I hope this invites you to take some time for yourself today. To sit with yourself and befriend your breath. When we show up for ourselves we raise the vibration of the planet. We choose what we think about, that is the ultimate liberation. Allowing space to be.
If you are not sure where to start, here are a few meditations you can check out