“You expand and then you meet your own resistance. In the human body and experience, as in nature, there is a continuous play between these forces. We reach to expand and are held back by constriction.”
—Betsy Polatin, Humanual, from Chapter One, (c) 2020
Of the various things I’ve read over the last while, this quote is one that has stayed with me. We reach to expand and then something happens next. What happens? Sometimes there is expansion. Sometimes the expansion stays for a while—maybe a long, long time—or maybe it’s briefer. And then something next happens. What happens next?
I wrote a poem this week after a monthly meeting with a group a cherished colleagues. I described the poem as a kind of collage of things. Later today (with the help of some feedback), I thought that perhaps it could be a nice poem for this longest night—this year’s winter solstice—as well as being a fine poem for any other moment. I’m sharing it here in two photographs. Read more ›
David Whyte is a poet who has offered so much richness to me through his poetry, offered me feelings of inspiration, aliveness, resonance. Re-reading some of his writing recently, these lines from the poem, What to Remember When Waking, stopped me in my tracks. Read more ›
In the book, Mindful Compassion, you will find an important sub-heading: “Mindfulness of the Chaotic Mind, Not Just the Still Mind” (see chapter five). The book is written by psychologist, Paul Gilbert, and mindfulness and compassion meditation instructor, Choden. The 10-word sub-heading is so important, containing a key concept, practice, and lesson in and of itself.Read more ›
I wrote a poem today. (More apt, I mostly jotted down words on a scrap piece of paper and called them a poem.) I decided to share the poem because to me it feels relevant to many people’s journeys toward self-acceptance and compassion, relevant also to a significant part of the work so many people do to support this journey in themselves and others.