Author Archives: Julia Jameson

There is a brokenness

out of which comes the unbroken,

a shatteredness

out of which blooms the unshatterable.

There is a sorrow

beyond all grief which leads to joy

and a fragility

out of whose depths emerges strength.

 

There is a hollow space

too vast for words

through which we pass with each loss,

out of whose darkness

we are sanctioned into being.

 

There is a cry deeper than all sound

whose serrated edges cut the heart

as we break open to the place inside

which is unbreakable and whole,

while learning to sing.

 

Rashani Rea

 

“Just let go.  Let go of how you thought your life should be, and embrace the life that is trying to work its way into your consciousness.”  

Caroline Myss

 

Words of inspiration

“In the end, only three things really matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.”  

Jack Kornfield

 

Journey of the Soul

In sight

Somewhere along the way,

Amidst the breaking waves,

In a fragment of time where the field of experience

Softened and expanded,

I fell back into the current of life.

The wind and my breath were one,

The sun radiated through my veins,

The earth held me with warmth and generosity.

Every cell quivered with full participation in life,

And came to rest in the deep well of stillness in my heart.

Written after my first day of practising meditation with open eyes, on retreat with John Welwood in the Hudson Valley, New York State, August 2016.

 

Words of inspiration

"Peace is this moment without judgment.

That is all. This moment in the heart-space

where everything that is is welcome.

Peace is this moment without thinking

that it should be some other way,

that you should feel some other thing,

that your life should unfold according to your plans."

Dorothy Hunt

 

Journey of the Soul

“The first thing you need to do when you’ve suffered loss or betrayal is to find a way to regain your wise heart so that you can let it hold the aching of your heart and facilitate going through your difficulties in a conscious and clear way.

The person who, already being on the way, falls upon hard times in the world, will not as a consequence turn to those friends who offered them refuge and comfort and encourage their old self to survive. Rather, they will seek out someone who will faithfully and inexorably help them to risk themselves, so they may endure the difficulty and pass courageously through it. Only to the extent that a person exposes themselves over and over again to annihilation and loss can that which is indestructible be found within them. In this daring lie dignity and the spirit of true awakening.

Sometimes suffering the losses and the unexpected betrayals and break-ups that befall each of us becomes the place where we grow deepest in our capacity to lead an authentic and free life. Often by working our way through our difficulties, our ability to love and feel compassion for ourselves and others deepens, along with the wisdom that will help us through similar problems in the future.”  

Jack Kornfield

Practice

Crossing the rainbow bridge

Anodea Judith was in London in October 2015, bringing together yoga, chanting, meditation, bioenergetics and Jungian psychology to deepen our understanding of the chakra system as a map of the human soul.  She describes the seven chakras spinning at the core of our being as a rainbow bridge, connecting spirit to matter, heaven to earth, mind to body and the masculine energy of pure consciousness, Shiva, with his eternal lover, Shakti, the primordial source of all creation.  The bridge has two way traffic; an upward current of liberation which enables us to access the transcendent and a downward current of manifestation, through which we realise our divine purpose in the physical world.  

A chakra practice for Winter

We begin at the beginning, with the Muladhara chakra, the root of life.  As time slows and the hours of darkness lengthen towards the solstice, we can light the fire, embrace the stillness that Winter offers us and take the opportunity to reflect on our place in the world.  Ironically, we initiate the long journey up by going down; down into the earth, the body, the unconscious and a primal place that is instinctually connected with the forces of nature.  Our physical body is the container through which we experience our journey across the rainbow bridge.  Informed by our early experience of surviving as a baby, the developmental task of the first chakra is to truly come into our body, claim our right to exist and engage squarely with life.

This gives us an opportunity to reflect on our relationship with our body, our sense of home and right livelihood, our financial situation and our ability to nourish ourselves physically, emotionally and spiritually.  Practices which connect us with our root chakra include opening the body through the deep poses of restorative yoga; cooking and eating wholesome foods, grown in the warmth to sustain us through the cold; long walks in nature that remind us of the earth’s rhythms; tidying and preparing the garden for the inrush of growth energy in Spring.  Anything that brings us into harmony with the here and now of the earth plane and our identity as a spiritual being in a physical body, will heal and balance the root chakra.

Words of Inspiration

Do not try to save

the whole world

or do anything grandiose.

Instead, create

a clearing

in the dense forest

of your life

and wait there

patiently,

until the song

that is your life

falls into your own cupped hands

and you recognize and greet it.

Only then will you know

how to give yourself

to this world

so worthy of rescue.

(Martha Postlewaite)

 

Practice

John Peacock, one of the teachers from Gaia House, led a workshop in London last weekend on ‘A Stillness of Mind’.  He reminded us of the importance of caring for ourselves and ensuring that we do not face the challenges of everyday life under-resourced.  The Buddha said, “Looking after oneself, one looks after others. Looking after others, one looks after oneself.”   Being able to operate from the place of stillness we touch in meditation, is a transferable skill, essential for realising balance and equanimity in every aspect of our lives.  In the words of Thomas Merton: “To allow oneself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone in everything, is to succumb to the violence of our times.”

 

Words of inspiration

You must learn one thing.

The world was made to be free in.

 

Give up all the other worlds

except the one to which you belong.

 

Sometimes it takes darkness and the sweet

confinement of your aloneness

to learn

 

anything or anyone 

that does not bring you alive

 

is too small for you.”

David Whyte, ‘Sweet Darkness’