In my mind is the image of an elastic band. If we pull it beyond full capacity it eventually breaks. If it is gently yet intently and repeatedly pulled beyond its designed purpose, It may lose some of its elasticity. There is a certain range where it performs its function at its best. Where that just right amount lies in each activity and experience could be a contemplation.
I am taking a break in learning Qigong as taught by the amazing Master Mingtong Gu, while taking a class in Dragon and Tiger Qigong. Bruce Frantzis re-introduces an ancient wisdom of “70%” in Dragon and Tiger Medical Qigong. It is about practicing moderation and staying comfortable, in order to perform your best.
Staying within the comfort zone, I think, also gives way to becoming more mindful. The focus allows room to breathe and our awareness to hold space. I imagine this to benefit us in physical, emotional and spiritual levels.
Grief slowed me down. Slowing down has come naturally in the process, as a way to create the cocoon of self protection and healing. The flow of my energy has changed, or so it seems, in various ways. Including for me becoming more aware of it, when I pay attention. Slowness can be felt in the same manner, when I pay attention.
70% for me meant taking it easier and gentler on oneself, even though it is also about moderation. As part of experiencing the physical loss of my beloved life partner, a shift in energies brought me possibly to 50% in some aspects.
In addition to slowing down my body in perhaps extreme ways, as in gaining 40lbs in the last year, I now do things often in slow motion, taking breaks. Before my husband’s illness, I was confronted with a mystery fatigue. Aside from living daily life at 100+%, I was told that it may have been due to exposure to Lyme Disease. During my husband’s sudden illness of 6 weeks, keeping him company around the clock including hospital stays, my energy levels were back to normal with no symptoms. The effect of mind and psyche over our bodies and health deserves to be taken seriously.
During the last couple of months, fatigue made me stay in bed few days at a time, in between days of my encouraging myself to walk my son to school. I started taking homeopathic supplements that I had intended to before my husband became ill. This regime, along with practicing Qigong at 50-70% is my current healing modality. I focus on finding the balance in doing the right amount.
Gliding in life with ease and graceful flow, in our thoughts, actions, considerations for others, could create a harmony that may otherwise feel stolen as a result of a rushed living. This is my sense of it, even if “stealing” may sound strong. I also respect each of us leading his or her life to its fullest experience. In order to know the grace of a slow deliberate flow, perhaps we first need to experience the other ways of being, at a personal level. I would love to go back a few years, and add this grace to a life rushed at times, and enjoy it with my loved ones. Yet, we each experience what we do when we do. And there is to hold, gain and know in all of this.
While in theory we may be told what is right, we each end up with the fruits of our own experience to formulate the understanding, at the time that is right for us. In order to appreciate moderation, or embody any type of practice fully, I think we need to embrace its meaning and impact at a cellular level.
Being introduced to the “slow city” movement in Carl Honoré’s Ted Talk, I was pleased. The future may bring some of this ease and comfort, towards ourselves and others we interact with, as a way of living, being, and doing, not just in chosen moments to practice.
I look out the park across the street from our home, or the garden at my son’s school. I envision people in these green spaces, and every place in between, flowing in grace, embracing their own energy and uniqueness.
June 3, 2016