On Health and Spirituality

Good morning,

I began the day like any other. I awoke, did the normal routines, grabbed a banana and went on the way to teach yoga class. My Wednesday night class has switched to a Saturday morning spot as I am leaving Florida for Texas to attend school for integrative medicine. That will be an integrative approach to promote health and wellness in the same ways that healed me.

Yoga was a spiritual experience. I never know exactly what will happen or which poses I will teach. There is a pool of poses to pick from, but a strict plan is never set up. Speaking with friend/teacher Alyssa, she has a similar style with her QiGong classes. We never know what is next, but the rhythm is established, free-flowing, and fully trusted with open hearts.

There were two people in my class: Oscar, a handsome middle-aged businessman, and my mother. I believe that the right people are in the right class at the right time. I feel like this was the case today. Taking a break from the hard rush of the week, we used our hour to stretch deeply and slowly. Concentration was on the breath and ankles flexed toward the floor in a moving meditation. We ended with smiles and a namaste: simply meaning the Light in me sees and recognizes the Light in you.

Yoga is a movement of respect, compassion and non-harm. It is non-denominational and, although it is associated with spirituality because of the zen-like peace it can bring, yoga is not a religion. It is open to all.

After class, I returned home. My mother used her day to go to Orlando and take care of her chores with ease. My weekends are dedicated to returning to a grounded nature and establishing in the Self. I love to read, create art, meditate, eat fruit in the hammock, and soak up the sun like a sponge.

Today I was dong just those things, in order.I can only describe what happened next as a brush with faith. I felt a calling to go to the river which flowed a few feet from the hammock. Dipping my toes, I began to pray. I prayed about what to do with school, which direction my life would take, for the health of my family, and for love in all hearts.

A few minutes went by like this as two dolphin dove by. Ten feet to my right, a pair of blow-holes spouted fresh water into the air. They sunk deep in their waved motion, and bobbed up again in a stretch of calmness. With their pass, I felt a deep appreciation and connectedness to all life.

After seeing the dolphins, I began to cry. I sunk my body toward itself and let out all my fears, desires, worries with cleansing tears. “Put your body in the water, submerge over the head,” I felt.

Knowing this feeling was ripe, I trusted. I placed my feet down the crusted steps into the river. My feet clung to the final step. The water was a thick emerald: I could not see what was below. What separated me from what was below? My feet hung to the steps as my hands clasped above, dipping my bottom in. Feeling fear, I cast it aside and dropped in.

Alive! A surge, submerged my head. Popping up again into the world like a birth, I reached for the stairs. My knees cried with fresh blood dripping down my leg from the thick barnacles. It burned and released years of pain.

I arose and went down again. This time not into the water but into the wood of the dock. I opened my heart to the sun and deeply drank in new air. More tears came down my face. The cuts stung like wasps, but I knew it would pass. “This too shall pass.”

And there, in the sun I began to sing.

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