All Saints Day Devotion & Meditation

Sit in a quiet space. See to it that you feel a great amount of comfort, as guided by your intuition. You can do this meditation on a person you have lost personally or on behalf of somebody you know who is grieving. You do not have to know the person personally to be able to stand in the gap for those who have buried their family or friends. You may also think of a cultural loss – such as all of those lost in this pandemic and their family and friends who mourn them.

Ideas:

  • Mug of hot water
  • Light a candle
  • Favorite perfume or oil
  • Article of clothing that fits loosely, feels soft on the skin
  • Draw the curtains or play with the natural light
  • Place a mirror in a thoughtful position
  • Toss a blanket in the dryer for a bit
  • Dab the lips with vaseline, rub lotion onto the feet or massage the wrists

Once you are situated, have your phone or printed paper with these instructions nearby. Read a section and then sit with it for a moment. When the mind gets restless (which may be right away, that is fine) move on to the next section.

Warm Up

  • Breathe in through the nose and sigh the exhale out of an open mouth
  • In a seated pose, circle the torso forward and then back, curving the spine. Think about “knocking easy tension” off the body as your circle. Let the neck and head be a part of your movement, Get into it.
  • Your meditation while breathing in this manner and moving in this manner: “Be Near, Assurance”
  • Continue circling, breathing with this meditation until you feel a little buzz, you grow weary, you naturally stop. Pause in the stillness and continue with the meditation “Be Near, Assurance” and bring your loved one, family or friend, to mind and notice the sensation in the body.

Pose 1

  • Breathe in through the nose and sigh the exhale out of an open mouth, allowing yourself to be audible in your exhales
  • Stretch the body out on a mat, blanket or in your bed – take a full body stretch.
  • Position a cushion or firm pillow under the knees. Roll a blanket under the ankles. Allow a thin cushion under the neck. If you have an eye cushion, lay it over the eyes.
  • Your meditation while breathing in this manner, in this pose, will be “Assurance, I see you”
  • Rest in this pose for anywhere from 6 – 15 minutes. Feel free to set a timer or simply just rest. Witness the breath and bring to mind any thoughts, memories, smells or nostalgic remnants of your loved one. As you experience this pose, have the words “Assurance, I see you” accompany your feelings and the thoughts or images that arise.

Pose 2

  • Breathe in through the nose, allowing yourself to make a snoring sound. Sometimes it takes a minute to find this! But a classic “waking snore” can relieve a lot of tension and add an element of humor to your practice that burns a little stubborn ego off.
  • Lay on your right side. Position a pillow between the two legs. Ensure the head is supported. Position the body against a firm cushion, a pillow up against a wall or a bolster in order to feel a sense of support at your back. Hands to clasp or in prayer pose is ideal, but go for comfort above all else.
  • Your meditation while snoring in this pose will be, “I assure you”
  • Rest in this pose for anywhere from 6 – 15 minutes. When the snoring naturally subsides or if it becomes “work”, let it go. Notice the freedom possible in repeating “I assure you” on an inhale without having to say “who” is “you” or “what” you are assuring anybody for. Rather, the energy and compassion behind such words are what we are manifesting in the repetition.

Final Rest

  • Allow the breath to come and go as it may in your final rest
  • Lay on your back once again or with the legs up the wall, especially if you have anxiety or have had an anxious day. Support the body similar to in pose 2.
  • Your meditation while resting in this pose will be, “I am here”
  • Rest in this pose, inviting the person you have loved and lost to see you. For the spirit to draw near. For a sense of calm and peace.

I will be praying for all of those taking this practice. I pray regularly for the grieving, for the suffering. If this is you, know you are being held.

Namaste :)

The More I Sit Here @ Deck Again on a Good Hair Day – Bellingham

The only thing about the house here in Washington that is like a thing is that we are up high and can look over and down onto our neighbor’s backyard.

Gordina – a house back and over – has a lovely garden with an enviable rosemary bush raised up in the pnw sun and veggies all year round under tinted weathered prayer flags. She doesn’t live right behind us though.

A young family does.

I look over and see chairs in random spots, that their gymnasium was moved, toy miniature everything galore and actually I think like 3 slides. On nice nights when we are all living that pacific northwest life, eating outdoors or with windows open, we are within ear and eye shot of each other.

I write out here. Sit out here. Close my eyes out here. Work out here. And I have noticed lately that their baby is probably teething. Or growing. Lots of baby cries.

But the more I sit here, I am also noticing how extremely patient the mom is. Sigh.

Deep breath and smile.

I think she must be a really good mom.

She must be – I can tell by the lack of anxiety in the air that she doesn’t let the fact her neighbors can hear her child carrying on put pressure on her to “fix the child”. I think she knows deep down she simply has a baby and they – simply- are crying.

Unlike most mothers I know who hush their babies to the self detriment of their own sanity, I am pretty sure this mom is like cool with reality and knows she is not annoying me.

Additionally, I have been out on the deck a lot lately. August in Washington is like perfect satin jambinos after a salt bath soak and a face massage; so relaxing and happy stupor inducing. The more I have been here, the more I notice when they are not in their yard.

I wonder sometimes if it is nap time. Or if she is cooking.

I wonder if they went for an outing and I picture them at the bay or on a hike or at the market.

Maybe they went to Target and, if that is the case, I send prayers and helpers.

One of my favorite things about being a spiritual mom is remembering I can send helpers. A woman I studied with a couple of years ago in yoga teacher training told me I was a white witch. I thought nothing of it but then when I close my eyes and bring a person to the center of my mind (like my friend right now who is waiting to give birth) and send supreme love and guidance and comfort and help and support and strangers to offer pieces of gum or cashiers to smile in just that way – I think maybe I am magical.

Wouldn’t mind it :)

Sighhhhhh… the rental lady just left here and the papers are signed to list the house to rent. David looks handsome and is probably getting ready for me to fix dinner. I am super excited about progress on perfecting pizza dough. So we are doing greek pizza tonight. But with goat cheese and not feta. Yum. Can’t wait.

The breeze is so nice, I just want to stay in this cradle of an afternoon sun forever.

But. Kalamata olives are calling my name.

One more glance back and over the fence. Smiling. Hope she is doing good with her little ones… wherever that mama is…

An Answer to a Prayer @ one of those moments 7.19

Just when I think maybe I don’t pray enough anymore, that I’m not actively communicating to the greater good what my thoughts are and where my heart is, so maybe now this time I have to sort through on my own, God grants me a thunderstorm.

It’s near 8 o’clock, I’m in bed with my legs propped up. My tea is almost done steeping.

One of the panels of the bedroom curtain is drawn back, and I can hear and see the rain.

An evening thunderstorm rolled in and is hanging out above us with a hearty steady rumble but not with fury.

Anything white or green outside glows in the dusk while the day is washed away.

An answer to a prayer.

There’s nothing like the peace of knowing you get to try again tomorrow.