SIMPLY BEING | SIMPLE BEING

Category: This-That (page 1 of 232)

Sticky Fear

Perhaps you have encountered this in Hatha Yoga practice, or martial arts practice, or any other kind of art/sport practice, maybe. There is a particular pose or sequence that doesn’t appear to favor you much, and you, in turn decide that you don’t care for it either. But there is no avoiding it, and if you encounter fear (or suffering) while doing said pose/sequence, it becomes a bit of a sticky affair… because that negative experience sticks to you, hard. Actually, it isn’t the one sticking to you—you are the one holding on to it because it has now become part of your story.

A skilled teacher may allow you to carry that story for a while but one day, they will come up to you and tell you, DROP THE DAMN THING. Now, you may get terribly peeved at them. They don’t understand you, obviously. They don’t know how awful that experience was, how real and concrete that sensation of fear. How you could feel your legs trembling, breath quivering… and there they are telling you to drop it. As if it were that easy… BAH.

It takes a brave teacher to come say this to their student because it takes only a millisecond for that person to go from a beloved instructor to one “who just doesn’t understand me.” Or, one who is “pushing me.”

Hmmm, I was (maybe) that student but I am now seeing the teacher in a new light.

DROP THE DAMN THING is a concession, really. One day you are able to see that there is no “thing” to be dropped, and in reality, there is “nothing” carried over from your earlier experience of Shoulder Stand to the present one. Such a relief, no?

a choice illusion

For the longest time I have been fascinated by the idea (illusion?) of choice. There have been more than a few “big events” in my life that came through very effortlessly. Meaning, no thinking required, no decision making skills exercised. Truth be told, I am kinda uncomfortable with having to “make a choice”—I am happier trusting in the larger flow of events.

This phenomenon (is it “choiceless awareness?”) has played out in my life experience so many times, and yet it so happens that ever so often I suffer from forgetfulness, and get into a tortuous bind, trying to “choose.” I forget that in truth, there are endless options, and my limited mind can comprehend only a few of them. And that there is not a real reason to “choose,” because the road is veering on its own, anyway… and one needs to turn the steering wheel very little, one way or another, for a smooth ride. One needs only to align with the larger curve, and there is minimal driving effort required.

For me this is about trusting, again and again. It’s about placing faith in the moment, allowing myself to be led. Perhaps it’s also about going in “blind,” refusing to give in to that little need “to know,” to be on top of things, to be in charge? Honestly, I am only too happy not to be in charge!

(There is a part of me that envisions all of this very differently. Perhaps all the mental gymnastics play out on a plane that exists wholly separate from the field of real action, so to speak. So, while we may spend endless hours deliberating on Choice#1 v/s Choice#2, the truth is that those considerations have zero bearing on what manifests.)

“Brahma”

If the wild bowler thinks he bowls,
Or if the batsman thinks he’s bowled,
They know not, poor misguided souls,
They too shall perish unconsoled.
I am the batsman and the bat,
I am the bowler and the ball,
The umpire, the pavilion cat,
The roller, pitch, and stumps, and all.

— Andrew Lang

Body balloon apparition

Ours is a family of skinny people, and over the last many months, we have gotten skinnier.

This is a matter of concern to some of us, and as we strive to add pounds to our frames, the topic of intermittent fasting comes up for consideration. I, for one, don’t think that skipping dinner is necessarily contributing to reduced weight, just as I don’t think that eating many meals a day should necessarily result in extra pounds.

I wonder if sustainable weight gain (or loss) may have little to do with the food we consume or the meals we skip. Indeed, I won’t be surprised if the figure on my scale starts to inch upward even as dinners continue to be skipped. (That certainly has been the case with my husband.)

I spent a year in Cairo, ’02-’03, and when I returned to India, I thought I resembled a South Indian film heroine. My frame, that is… It was a year of bad sleep, fatty food, zero exercise, emotional drama, et al. Small surprise that the pounds piled on, maybe? Anyway, I came home, enrolled in a gym, and the weight came off easily. And it remained steady for years until it began to drop. I consulted my Ayurvedic physician who saw no reason to worry. “It’s probably all the ama (toxins) that are gone,” she surmised.

And now, once again, the weight has reduced.

You know the typical questions a doctor asks a parent that’s worried about their child’s health… Does he sleep well? Does she poop on time? Is he active, energetic, enthusiastic? Does she look happy? Perhaps these are the same questions one should review as an adult, too. And if you come up with “yes” on all counts, then there is little cause for worry, I think?

The human body is so remarkable… and I am not even talking about its internal mechanisms and functioning. I am hinting at its physical appearance. When I look at my husband’s face, it occurs to me that he looks a lot older than he did a few years ago BUT he looks a lot younger, also. And I feel similarly about myself as well. My hair is “a fountain of grey,” (the husband’s description) but my face looks younger. The frame is smaller but it feels more solid. The wrists are skinny but they are stronger.

And then I wonder, is this body a mere apparition? Is it a simple projection of “my mind” in space? Is it the shape and form of my wishes and desires? Is it a balloon? 😄

tone of voice

There are compliments, and there is this.

“I just wanted to say that I really like your approach/way of giving feedback during design reviews.

The way you present your thoughts and the tone of voice you use to do so really puts me in a state of mind where I see things and new ideas come up 🙂

Somehow it feels very collaborative.”

“Tone of voice” is an interesting thing. What our voice actually conveys to others is a mystery, no? Because it has little to do with the content of our speech and everything to do with the sound of it.

I was ruminating some weeks earlier about our “voiceprint” and its uniqueness, and how we respond to “voiceprints” at a subconscious level. I have an acquaintance whose voice feels rather loud (even at a low decibel level), and it sets off an “Ohhhh” response in me. Then there are friends whose voices are pure warmth and honey—so relaxing and comforting even when they are speaking of mundane matters. There are some people whose voices make me feel that they are on the verge of tears all the time.

I don’t always know how I sound unless I record myself, of course… and I don’t do that a lot. Over the years my voice has changed, maybe? I am not sure. I used to think I sound like an excited teenager but these days I think I sound like an enthusiastic young woman.

All very interesting and mysterious, I think. (For Human Design enthusiasts, I have an undefined throat.)

And if you are wondering how I sound, there are a bunch of videos on this site under the Videos tab.