This past week, on a trip to Cali, I’ve been deliciously checked out, unplugged, unscheduled, able to rest my bones and shake up my habits in ocean water and mountain air. I pulled myself together long enough to take a yoga class from my dear friend, Rich McLaughlin, and with his guidance, really loved leaning into the beauty of the in-between breath, the effervescence and joy after the inhale, and the contentment and rest in the pause after the exhale.
I feel that the breath is teaching me the same lesson as the sensitive and articulate writings of Alok Vaid-Menon, where they write that being labeled non-binary is too limiting, that they are beyond that, and instead, are infinite. This study of the breath and infinity nourishes my longing for the freedom of fluid thinking, flowing movement, and resilient responses to this complicated and challenging life.
In Bayo Akomolafe’s course, We Will Dance with the Mountains into the Cracks, that longing for freedom is definitely being challenged as he encourages us to look at failure, to explore failure as fugitivity; to fall into the cracks. What is more powerful than power? How do we relinquish the hope for some simple solution to coloniality, racism, sexism? One of the many things I am being asked to consider is who, or what am I listening to when I am thinking. That inquiry demands that I pause, fail, and then fall into the cracks. Only then does it begin to become clear: I am listening to my skin, to my sensations, to the trees and the wind. I am listening to the movement of my breath, and the light of the moon. I am listening to, dancing with, watching and waiting for inspiration; from you, from the more-than-human world, from my dreams.
The Heart Sutra sums it up:
Om gate gate, paragate, parasamgate, bodhi svaha. “Gone, gone, gone beyond, together we go beyond, Awakening, so be it.”
Returning this week, I’m excited by the new offerings at Sadhana in November!