Sunday, August 7, 2011

Listening in the Dark

What do you do in life when you are lost, when you don’t know the way? Really, what do you do? I guess I can only speak for myself. For me, I love the honesty of the first lines of Dante’s La Comedia: “In the middle of the road of my life, I awoke in a dark wood where the true way was wholly lost.” I love this because of his voice of vulnerability—he’s saying he doesn’t have the answers. But he says it with a quality that also suggests a willingness to search. While it’s hard to not know where to go, it’s also an amazing opportunity for discovery. Dante finds himself lost and unsure but willing to search and listen and try something new. I love the honesty there. After all, what other choice is there?

I suppose that when we arrive to those dark points in life, we really have no choice but to use our resources and tune into our senses. We must become very grounded and present and first allow ourselves to be exactly where we are—lost. Like I said in my letter a few weeks ago, we have to learn to be here in order to move on. Then, I would imagine that we have to listen really hard. Not just to the sounds, like the crickets chirping out my window somehow in sync with Joshua James playing softly on my stereo, but also to the way our body feels. We must learn to listen to all the things which aren’t said.

Yoga suggests that each part is connected to each other part. Sometimes my body whispers the sentences my heart can’t bear to. I love to look and listen for the symbols that seem to embellish the events of my life with irony and richness, like when I went on a run recently and decided to make a playlist on my iPod that sung to all the different emotions I’m feeling in life right now. I looked down at my heart monitor and it indicated that my heart was almost ready to break. Damn, those Garmin’s are amazing!

So whether you are in a dark place in life, a bright place, or what’s more likely somewhere in between, I invite you to join me at yoga class this week and practice listening to your heart, mind, and body. Come with some of that investigative vulnerability and see what mysterious paths open up for you.
Click here to read one of my favorite poems called Lost.

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