Wild Geese - Mary Oliver
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk for miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees, the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again.
Whoever you are, not matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting- over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
Chant: Om Bhagawan
Om Bhagawan, Sri Bhagawan
Om Bhagawan, Sri Bhagawan
Bhagawan = Holy or Blessed One
Sat = Existence
Chit = Pure Consciousness
Ananda = Bliss
Self-Observation Without Judgement.
One Soul: More poems from the heart of yoga - Danna Faulds.
Release the harsh and pointed inner voice.
It's just a throwback to the past,
and holds no truth about this moment.
Let go of self-judgment, the old,
learned ways of beating yourself up
for each imagined inadequacy.
Allow the dialogue within the mind
to grow friendlier, and quiet.
Shift out of inner criticism and life
suddenly looks very different.
I can say this is only because I make
the choice a hundred times a day
to release the voice that refuses to
acknowledge the real me.
What's needed here isn't more
prodding toward perfection,
but intimacy - seeing clearly,
and embracing what I see.
Love, not judgment, sows the
seeds of tranquility and change.
Photo courtesy of Robert Jackson, partner of Claire Heywood- SunYoga Founder.
A beautiful misty morning in Tassie.
Self Nurturing Suggestions:
- Epsom salts and aromatherapy bath. This is one of my favourite things to do when I actually allow myself the time to do it. I always have a more restful sleep and generally feel more centered.
- Embrace the Sunshine! When ever possible sit out in the sun; for a cuppa or some reading and enjoy some sun on your face. Maybe in a window - my dogs do this all the time on cold days when there is a sunny spot on the carpet. Even 5-10 mins can help your spirits lift.
- Foot soak. Epsom salts and some essential oils here too. Read a book while your feet are resting and then a little self massage with oils. Coconut oil with a couple of drops of peppermint is my fave. Mmmm.
- Get enough sleep. In ancient wisdom traditions, our circadian rhythms play a huge role in our overall wellness. The hours between 10pm-2am are the most valued and considered to be the most regenerative hours.
- Doing a restorative yoga pose. Legs up the wall (Viparita Karani), Savasana, or a forward fold like childs pose over a bolster or some pillows. Or maybe 3-6 mins of Ujjayi breathing. (ocean breath).
- Relaxation or deep tissue massage. I try to see my massage therapist every other month. I feel that it is an essential rather than a luxury. Massage can help with circulation, relaxation and reduce muscle tightness.
- Time in nature. Yes I know it's cold, but rug up and take a brisk walk, appreciate some nature, sunsets, sunrises, or simply your own garden, no matter how small.
- Practice gratitude. This can be such a simple yet profound practice. Thinking of something that brings gratitude into your life each morning and night. I placed some flowers beside my bed as a reminder. Usually flowers, when in the house which is not all the time, are in the living area where everyone can admire them, but these ones were just for me. (And I'm sure my partner enjoyed them too!) I took some photos as they blossomed.
And as well known restorative yoga teacher Lizzie Lassiter says:
"With self care, it is not in the "doing" that is hard, it's in the remembering. Going for a walk, doing a restorative pose, taking a bath- these things aren't hard in and of themselves. What can be difficult is the shift in our state of consciousness away from the high-strung distractions of our daily lives."