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Space, energy and the spiritual path

space+energy fractal_framedEverything that exists in this world can be described in two basic terms: space and energy, yin and yang, form and content, shiva and shakti… The atoms in your body, the thoughts in your mind: everything is just a dance between these two fundamental elements.  Does this sound strangely abstract or theoretical?

If so, meditation and yoga can provide a means for discovering the very real space and energy inside you.  Endless space.  Pure energy. Continue reading Space, energy and the spiritual path

Breath

breathDrawing each breath in, let us practise acceptance.  Again and again, a thousand times a day.  My lungs cannot discriminate between good air, bad air — no, it is the mind which labels things ‘clean’ or ‘polluted’.  To the lungs and to the heart, it is all air, for better or for worse.  Breathe in and let it mingle with your body deep inside.
Acceptance: without it, my soul suffocates.

Giving each breath back to the world, let us practise letting go.  Again and again, a thousand times a day.  My lungs are infinitely generous — for it is only the mind which fears loss.  To the lungs and to the heart, it is all just air, not ‘yours’ and ‘mine’.  Breathe out and let it mingle deep inside another’s body, just as the breath of a million other lives mingles now in your own lungs.
Letting go: without it, I can no longer accept.

Each inhale gives birth to new life.  Each exhale dies its own little death — and brings us a little closer to our own final breath.  Let us practise this again and again, a thousand times a day.

With our first baby breath of life, with all our heart and lungs we drew the breath in.

Let us accept life for what it is, and when it is time for life to end, let us let it go with just another breath…

30 seconds to care

chihuahuaSometimes I just don’t understand people.  I was in the last kilometre of my morning run, heading back home, when I heard the most desperate scream.  Not more than 20 metres ahead of me, a woman was walking with her dog on the zebra crossing leading into the park.  A car hit the dog, and then just continued, without even stopping.  As if nothing had happened. Continue reading 30 seconds to care

Barefoot running: form and mechanics

This article is a continuation to the previous article ‘How to start running barefoot.’  It begins by examining the physical differences between running barefoot and in shoes.

1. The landing: heel striking versus the midfoot

bareefoot running asphaltThe most fundamental difference between running in shoes and running barefoot is the way your foot strikes the ground.  The vast majority of shodden runners are ‘heel strikers’ – that is, the first point of contact with the ground is the heel.  To most of us this seems only natural: how else could we possible run?  What we fail to consider, though, is that it is the design of shoes themselves which force the foot into heel striking. Continue reading Barefoot running: form and mechanics

How to start running barefoot

It’s not that hard really…

There are two ways to start out on the road to running barefoot.  One is to do it gradually, with a transition period using minimalist footgear, before taking the plunge into barefoot running proper.  The other is to go ‘cold turkey,’ and throw your shoes away from the start.  In this respect, cutting our addiction to running shoes is similar to stopping smoking.  Different things can work for different people. Continue reading How to start running barefoot

Season of love and light

the star (200x200framed5pixel)Jan. 5, 2012

Today is the twelfth day of Christmas, traditionally the last day of this season of Love and Light.  It’s more than just coincidence that so many traditions involve festivals of light this time of year.

Druids have gathered at Stonehenge for thousands of years to celebrate the rising of the Winter Solstice sun.  Of course, in simple astronomical terms this constitutes the shortest day of the year.  And as we all know, the druids had to have a practical knowledge of the stars, in order to know when to plant their crops.  But the deeper meaning of their celebration lies on a spiritual level.  Along with so many other ancient monuments, Stonehenge’s alignment with the Winter Solstice sunrise reflects a deeper alignment between outer and inner reality.  On the Winter Solstice, the sun is ‘reborn’ as the days begin to lengthen and grow again.  In the same way, each one of us has the potential to be ‘reborn’ spiritually, to recognise and know that there is more to Life than just the physical world around us.  Just as we are all born physically into this world, the first-hand experience of Spirit is itself a kind of ‘rebirth’ within this human life.  It’s no coincidence that, in celebrating spiritual rebirth, the druids chose to worship the Sun – for inner light (‘enlightenment’) and outer light perfectly reflect each other. Continue reading Season of love and light