25 Dec 2010

The Earth Beneath Her Feet

A nice solid friday practice, the foundation of Ashtanga.  It felt good, simple, I could concentrate and breathe deeply. 

Just finished reading Salman Rushdies novel, shook my world up a bit...love his writing, much food for thought.
Foundations.. so important. When the earth shakes it really is one of the scariest sensations.  I always took the stability of the earth beneath my feet for granted until I moved Japan, where the earth shakes a lot.

Earthquakes even shaking the foundations in the UK this week.  Death and sickness and eminient departures of close friends shaking my foundations.

After 11 years in Japan and 7 years of Ashtanga yoga, foundations take on a different meaning.  When I look back at my shaven headed image I remember the angst the worries - how I've changed, or is that just aged..

I feel that my time in Japan has in helped my appreciation of life, culture, spiritulaity in a profound way.  As Salman Rushdie said "you need to step out of the frame to see the whole picture".  So I stepped out of the UK frame into the most "foreign" culture I could think of, and then out of the frame of directionless spirituality and into the Ashtanga frame.  My view has gotten much clearer, and am looking forward to increased clarity and sharpness as I continue with this practice of awakening. 
What our lives is built on is not as stable as we think.  Take nothing for granted.  Again I am reminded of the words I read on Grimmly's blog by Zen Master Guishan.  "Some day you will die,... Practice Heroically."  But in the meantime, at this festive time of year I intend to be thankful and appreciate what I have, make the most of dear family and friends, enjoy, smile, give what I can, be merry and of course...practice. 

Love and light to all ☆


  1. this is lovely, peace and happiness to you too!

  2. I remember the earthquakes, The Japanese laughing gently at our unease when a little one would happen while teaching, but also how they would go quiet when one would go on a little too long. This was in Kansai. Even over here I catch myself looking uneasily at anything not tied down. Kino comes to mind, her first video, saying over and over and with curious intonation, "Strong legs are your foundation". Seems this practice has become mine, of my day but perhaps ontologically too and yet it seemingly relies on constant tending, on getting on the mat each morning. I sometimes wonder how long I could go without practicing before the whole thing comes tumbling down or is there a point where where the physical practice becomes less important and it's just the metaphor that crumbles. Sorry, started rambling there, hope your having a wonderful holiday and your over here too : )

  3. Yes, but rather than become your don't you become it...? A merging, a morphing....and hopefully constantly evolving. Hope your Mushroom wellington was delicious!