Thursday, 30 August 2012

Yoga Sparks Beaving, I mean BEING!

Everyday questions going through my head: What is my purpose? Why am I here? What am I supposed to be doing?  How can I share my passions? Wait, what are my passions? How can I serve others while staying true to myself?  Essentially, what is my dharma? How can I just be me?  What does being me really mean?  

Awhile back I was searching for story books and poems to theme a kids yoga class with and came across a classic poem. Over in the Meadow.  This poem blew my mind! Just like that I completely understood the concept of dharma.  In the moment that I came to the last verse of the poem, it made complete sense to me what just being me really meant.  Thank goodness for beavers.  

For anyone unfamiliar with the nursery rhyme, it’s a counting poem with ten verses each verse featuring an animal and the mother telling the baby animal how to just be themselves using an appropriate verb. Mother fish tells the little fish to swim.  Mother duck tells little duck to quack. Mother frog tell little frog to jump. And so on and so on.  All very obvious instructions, just swim and you will be a fish.  Just jump and you will be a frog.  So simple, well too simple really.  If I swim, I will not be a fish, if I jump I will not actually be a frog.  But then we get to the last verse, the mind blowing verse, (I realize I just said twice that this nursery rhyme is mind blowing, but stay with me here).  

The Beavers.  Old mother beaver and her little beavers ten.  Picture it now.  Mom beaver and ten tiny beavers staring up at mom with unblinking wide eyes asking her, “Mom? How do we be beavers?” Seriously, I’m excited just thinking about this!  She doesn’t say, “Just gnaw down trees and make dams, oh and slap your tail when you feel danger.”  No.  Being a beaver is sooo much more than that.  So what does she say?  “Just Beave.” Wha?? BEAVE? Is that even a word?  (Looking it up now...)

beave - no dictionary results

So no, it’s not actually a word. But it is a very important illustration of a concept. What the dictionary should say is, beave - the action or state of being a beaver. It’s the all encompassing verb of what being a beaver means.  It’s the beavers’ dharma! The beavers’ dharma is to BEAVE!  So now apply this to Amy.  Picture little Amy sitting in front of Old mother Ramler.  “Mom? How do I be Amy?” And she says, “Just Ame!” The Amy’s dharma is to Ame! My dharma is not to teach, not to paint, not to write, not to play, not to do yoga, not to be funny, not to floss my teeth (or not).  It’s so much more than that.  It’s to just be, and me just being me is so much more than being a teacher, than being a good friend, than being an artist.  And there really is no way to describe it but to just be. And even in those moments where life feels uncomfortable, like I don't know who I am or what my purpose is, even in those moments, that's just part of being Amy! And I'll rest in that :)

Yoga sparks me being. What does just being look like for you?  What is your personal all encompassing verb?

ame - the action or state of being Amy

Over in the meadow in the grass in the sun,
Lived an old mother Ramler and her
Little Amy one.
“Ame,” said the mother,
“I Ame,” said the one, and she
Amed all day in the grass in the sun.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Yoga Sparks Perspective

Today I finally had the courage to go back and look at what I had written for Yoga Sparks at the beginning of this past school year.  A time when I felt so connected to my purpose that when I lost that connection, a fear of never feeling connected again surfaced daily. The past year has held some of the darkest and most brilliant feelings I have ever experienced, and it is from this point that I begin again, this time without my own classroom.

As I look back at my first post Yoga Sparks Beginnings, there is a part that still makes my heart jump, expand and move in the most beautiful way.

Yoga has sparked so much in me and my corner of the universe. I truly feel that our students are searching for a new environment to express their completeness.  And it is with this feeling that I am beginning to bring my collection of skills together into a vision of a classroom that is open, caring, loving, moving, expanding and continually changing to meet each and every level of need in my classroom. August 25, 2011

The challenge for me now is to figure out what this looks like without my own classroom, without a contract within a division and for now, without a regular group of young people to create sparks with.  So, over the next few months, this blog is going to take a different angle.  An angle of exploration, searching, inquiry and investigation into how I can best serve this vision that so brilliantly makes my soul sparkle.

Ironically it is a year today that I felt the pull to start writing, and today, very spontaneously had a deep longing to start writing Yoga Sparks again. So here’s the spark, my passion for teaching is still there, my passion for inspiring others in their classrooms is still there, it just needs a new perspective, standing from a new spot and looking at it differently to allow for new possibilities to unfold.  My place in this vision might not look how I initially thought it would. Yoga Sparks this shift to look at a vision from another angle.  Is there anything in your life that you can approach from another place?  Explore an old idea with a new direction or revisit something you started and haven’t had the courage to go back to. Go back now, and let me know how it goes!

Lots of love,