A Place You’ve Never Been Before

 

15 Years Later

After the occasion of January’s Super, Wolf, Blood total eclipsing moon last Sunday, I noticed with enthusiasm a number of people, commenting that watching the event was transformative, even mystical. That – seeing our galactic lunar companion, go from a luminous flat disk to a deep red, three dimensional, sphere, shifted, not just the night sky, but them. I felt that too.

Some described the experience as ‘spiritual’ or “out-of-this-world”. Clearly there was something to be said for being with the moon and the many, for this dynamic, interactive experience.

Major collective events of the Natural world affect us all on a deep level, especially if we are personally involved or paying attention. They remind us, of the magnitude and wonder of this great universe that we are all a part of, as well as how small and vulnerable our own little concept of ‘the world’ might be.

Experiences that cause a significant physical change often create a paradigm shift in one’s perceptions and established beliefs, and may provoke a wholesale shift in reality. Shifts can also be tectonic, occurring over time, moving along a incremental but accumulative trajectory. Either way – they happen. But what really interests me and I think it might you too, is: what is shifting and how can this be met for the best possible outcome?

Change can be unsettling, challenging the comfort of the status quo, which will either be met with resistance or curiosity. If the event happens in our personal lives – if we are suddenly or consistently catapulted out of our familiar, to a dramatically different state, it may be transformative, but it will likely not be enjoyable initially.

This process articulates the Spiritual journey, the evolutionary thrust of life – when we move from one level of awareness and consciousness to something much deeper and greater. To a place we’ve never been before – exciting

Spirit however is characterized with challenging attributes: paradigm shifts, changeable, creative, invisible, mutable, unpredictable, cataclysmic, evolutionary, curious, mysterious, paradoxical, mystical, indescribable, otherworldly. All of the things our linear minds have trouble with, even though we all want to be on the winning team, the one with the most ‘spirit’

My fall 15 years ago today, Jan 25 brought me to my knees metaphorically, where on the precipice of the ‘unseen’ and the ‘seen’ worlds, I had to navigate a decision with Spirit, to meet with curiosity rather than fear, my new paralyzed state.

Humbled by the magnitude of my situation I chose to forego my resistance. That surrender was mostly practical, like a wounded bird, but also intuitive, I knew from other ‘shift’s’ there was no better option. This is process is somewhat inexpressible in words because in that moment your consciousness expands, then your bigger questions of life take on a whole new perspective, that allows your understanding to deepen-where you see the intricate connections and without question feel faith in your understanding of the BIG picture. You may not be able to articulate that Big picture, but you sense it, know it – like a baby its mother. You will then notice yourself experiencing the Infinite of the whole within yourself, which illuminates and diminishes the difficult personal and societal challenges of our human life.

The opinion that these states are questionable or ’unreal’ without creedence, speaks to the difficulty we have with our understanding of the spiritual, or the unseen world. This chasm has been going on for centuries and interferes with our capacity to fully perceive ourselves and the cosmos. That our understanding of Spirit is limited, is only because it is not immune from our human necessity to dissect things into small parts and name them. Thankfully no religious dogma or science has succeeded in doing so.

What animates all of life is an extraordinary, evolutionary consciousness that seeks to continually evolve and experience itself in more and more expansive and expressive ways. Our own personal journey is a unique piece of that puzzle. In fact we are co-creating our reality with the universal consciousness every moment. When we can really grok the magnitude of that relationship we are on our way to personal peace, harmony and fulfilment, realizing the limitlessness of our very own Nature.

Ways to Connect with your Spirit Nature:

1. Accept that not all things real, or of value are physical. Use your breath and your imagination to tap into your non-physical resources.

2. Take time every day to tune in and cultivate a relationship with your intuition, your instinct and your imagination. Notice insights, coincidence & joy.

3. Develop a daily conversation that offers gratitude, respect and recognition for all of the unseen & seen ways that the Spirited universe supports your life.

4. Practice non-judgement. Although useful for measure, judging leads to a stale state of mind, eventual deadening. See non-duality.

5. Rejuvenate yourself frequently in Nature, cultivate perception and presence.

6. Make time everyday to be in Silence or the ‘immeasurable’. Be awestruck!

Blessings,

Mary-Jo

www.mary-jo.com

www.trinityyoga.net

Memory Re-Member Remembrance

I recall fondly my first Remembrance Day ceremony with my dad and all of the veterans looking sharp and commanding in their regalia. The cold November air stung my four year old lungs and made me feel older as I blew out clouds of smoke-like breath. My dad’s solid stature by my side, held my mittened hand while his booming voice recited Flanders Field for the crowd, It is a day for ‘remembering’ particularly those, who gave their lives for our freedom, for democracy.

Many of the brave soldiers we honour today, have ‘memories’ of war and the line of duty which they carried through their lives, some pleasant but many traumatic. At a time before the advances of neuro imaging, the now documented effects of the PTSD that many suffered went underground, undiagnosed and misunderstood. Years later addiction, abusive behaviour, body deterioration, Alzheimer’s and depression enslaved many veterans. Their memories of war are important for good reasons, the least of which to ensure we do not regress through a collective amnesia to any event similar.

How we physiologically remember is still under study, but we do know memories are processed in a small structure above the brain stem called the hippocampus. Embedded in this region is the Amygdala, where we store our emotions including trauma. Memory is a function and a composition of many brain parts, including the body. I know your thinking, the body is not the brain, but it is a nervous system network. That we also ‘physically’ remember is a complex theory gaining validity and further insight from neurobiology and neurophysiology work with trauma. If fact a significant tenant from manual physical therapists is: “the body doesn’t lie’.

The fact that I remember the armistice day celebration with my dad so clearly is because all of my sensory systems were taking in the information and processing it into memory. My felt sense created a ‘living memory’, easily retrievable due to the many ways of remembering. I remembering a time, not long ago when science finally acknowledged the brain-body relationship as more significant than ever imagined. Mindfulness, trauma informed yoga, stress management, somatic-psychology and biofeedback are a few examples of this understanding showing up in the modern lexicon. We are fortunate at this time too witness redemption of the body and particularity the body-mind relational interface.

This recent acceptance by science is a burgeoning field, with untold possibilities for medicine and healing. As we gather to honour soldiers, we can re-member the hard-won lessons: everything matters, from the micro-to-the macro we are one, everything has a vibration that is registered and possibly stored in the body and last, the-body-doesn’t lie. Our living memories captured in time physically have a lot to teach us, they are the doorways into understanding ourselves in a more complete and holistic way. As we heal ourselves using the ancient techniques of yoga, mindfulness, therapy and manual therapy, we will be synchronistically healing the whole. There could be no better use for Remembrance.

The explosion of trauma sensitive offerings for healing makes it easy to find support for what suits your needs. We at Trinity Yoga would love to help you function and feel better with the following opportunities:

Adaptive & Accessible Yoga Training – Vancouver. Jan 4 & 5 Register here

Nada Yoga – The Yoga of Sound & Vibration for Healing -Vancouver February 24

Adaptive & Accessible Yoga Training – Edmonton. April 6 & 7 Register here

How Adaptive and Accessible are You?

Hello friends. Recently I was preparing the training manual for a course on Adaptive Yoga and I got to thinking about the two terms: Adaptive & Accessible. They are becoming more prevalent lately, as our collective culture strives more and more to embrace human and biological diversity. It is a great shift. Darwin was probably the first public figure to highlight the Adaptive nature of biology, ours included. The word ‘adapt’ is defined as; “To adjust oneself to different conditions, environment, etc.: to adapt easily to all circumstances.” That sounds like smart and important qualities to have. How often have you felt stuck in a situation where, due to your unwillingness to change your perspective or Adapt, you (and possibly another) end up suffering?

The crucible of our ability to Adapt actually lies within our capacity to be Accessible. Accessibility is not just about physical features that allow a person to enter a building etc. No – rather accessibility at the fundamental level suggests an ability to be open, approachable, capable of including all. In its essence the concept further suggests a quality of effortlessness or ease. To cultivate an attitude of accessability or openness means I may adapt more easily to all circumstances. Now that sounds like an end to most causes of stress and the enviable suffering it can cause.

Why don’t you join us in Calgary at the upcoming Adaptive Yoga Training and learn how to make Yoga accessible for every-body. This is a two day course, March 10 & 11th at Mount Royal University. Space is now limited, Register now at www.trinityyoga.net.

I am also super excited to announce I will be presenting at the Toronto Accessible Yoga Conference this June 22-24th. The conference is a fabulous opportunity to meet and learn from amazing individuals who are pioneering how yoga as a healing art and science can benefit all. The other really cool thing happening that weekend will be a Guinness World Book event of The World’s largest ever Accessible Yoga Class which I will co-teach with Jivana Heyman and other AY ambassadors. This will coincide with The International Day of Yoga – WOW! Don’t miss out – If you register right now, up until February 28 you will receive 10% off Tickets on sale now! total by using “mary-jo” in the promo code. See you there!

Blessings,

Mary-Jo