Yoga with Mirella Nicholson

Yoga with Mirella Nicholson

Monday, April 5, 2010

"Before enlightenment chopped wood, carried water....."

Yesterday was Easter, I was expecting a full house for dinner. I got up early to let the Easter bunny in with the baskets and then made the mistake of sitting on the sofa. The next thing I know it's almost 11am!! I can't tell you the last time I slept so much or so soundly. Apparently I needed the sleep but then I found myself behind in what I wanted to do.

While the rest of my family went to visit their Nanny I had the house to myself. Half way through my "to do list" I went out back to let my dog out and noticed what a beautiful day it was. I think about how lovely it would be to meditate outside.
So that's what I did. (That's my way of practicing staying in the present moment)

Just as I begin the mantra I notice a huge bee buzzing around me. My first reaction was to swat it away but I practice ahimsa (now harming). Then Pumpkin, my dog, started pacing (he suffers from excess vata), the birds were chirping happily. The "to do list" was swirling around in my head. Slowly, as I watched my breath and repeated the mantra the world began to settle down. The buzzing bee, the dog, the birds, the "to do list" all fell away. All that was there was my breath and the mantra.

After the 108 repetitions I sat for a while in meditation. I'm not sure how long I was there. I begin to notice the bee buzzing and dog pacing and the birds began singing again marking the end of meditation. I go back to my to do list noting that tasks don't seem so bad anymore.

While I'm washing and cutting my potatoes and I'm aware of the feel of the water on my hands, the feel of the potatoes after I washed them. I remember Padmasri, a teacher I've meet who taught us how preparing food can be a sadhana.

Meditation changes how we see things both metaphorically and literally. After meditation I feel like my vision is more clear. (Anyone else experience this? Is it just my imagination?) Metaphorically speaking everything we do is no longer a chore it's now done as a sadhana. We do what we do but with the intention of serving God.

I have these little cards that have sayings from the Buddha. One says "Before enlightenment chopped wood, carried water. After enlightenment, chopped wood, carried water." --

Do whatever you do today with the intention of doing it as a service to the Divine.

Gayatri mantra - Day 2 / take 2
When I went to bed last night I couldn't fall asleep. I start obsessing, I'm worried about a friend who's going through some troubles, I'm hoping that my teacher and new friends enjoyed the visit as much as I did, did everyone eat enough, did I spend enough time with everyone..... When I start obsessing the only thing that helps is mantra. So I fell asleep with the Gayatri mantra on my mind. I noticed whenever I woke up during the night, it was still repeating itself in my mind.

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