Saturday, June 6, 2009

Sacred Pause

How fit to employ all the heart and the soul and the senses forever in joy!

Another fitting quote for my day--giving over all of my consciousness to deliberately experiencing joy. I think I can do this, who doesn't want joy?

This morning I am taking a break from my practice. In the Ashtanga lineage, and perhaps others as well, Saturday is a day of rest. I have begun to incorporate this 'day of rest' into my own practice path. Every weekday morning, I rise no later than 5:00 AM to practice and Sundays, I usually practice at 7:00 AM--this practice includes asanas (yoga postures), pranayama (breathwork) and meditation. But Saturdays? I rest...and to my surprise, this rest has become a very active practice.

The word rest, to me, means having a period of time to absorb the energy I have created all week through my practice. I have cultivated a strong sense of presence and fortified the still point of my mind. I have moved with intention birthed from an intimate connection to my body/mind. I have created space between thoughts, to the best of my ability, so that I move further away from being a servant to mind chatter. So this rest, is my reflection rest area--a sort of spiritual marination...letting it all soak in.

Lama Surya Das calls this a sacred pause--periods of mindfulness that we deliberately cultivate in our lives. Where we practice these sacred pauses is not as important as the fact that we do, indeed, practice them. A pause may be slipped into a seated meditation or while preparing dinner, sitting at a traffic light or interacting with our children and it becomes a reminder to 'be present', it provides an opportunity to employ all of the senses, the heart and the soul in joy.

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