Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Centering First Before Doing

Lately I've been fascinated by the skillfulness of Bill Morgan's teachings on cultivating a "holding environment" for ourselves at the beginning of each meditation: jglovas.wixsite.com/awarenessnow/single-post/2016/09/02/Holding-Environment-for-Ourselves

Joanna Macy's advice below for all of us (not just "activists") resonates strongly with our need to repeatedly center. If we are to decrease suffering & increase benefit for ourselves and others, we must remember to first return to our true home - loving awareness. Only then can we speak and act authentically, with integrity, in the world.

"The activist's inner journey appears to me like a spiral, interconnecting four successive stages or movements that feed into each other. These four are:
  1. opening to gratitude,
  2. owning our pain for the world,
  3. seeing with new eyes,
  4. going forth.
The sequence repeats itself, as the spiral circles round, but ever in new ways. The spiral is fractal in nature: it can characterize a lifetime or a project, and it can also happen in a day or several times a day. The spiral begins with gratitude, because that quiets the frantic mind and brings us back to source. It reconnects us with our empathy and personal power. It helps us to be more fully present to our world. Grounded presence provides the psychic space for acknowledging the pain we carry for our world.

In owning this pain, and daring to experience it, we learn that our capacity to suffer with is the true meaning of compassion. We begin to know the immensity of our heart-mind, and how it helps us to move beyond fear. What had isolated us in private anguish now opens outward and delivers us into wider reaches of our world as lover, world as self."

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