Bearing Witness

Now, we find ourselves being mandated to shelter in place for the entire month of April, which is yet another four weeks. What about May and June? And beyond? I struggle to make sense of this shutdown, the distance, the enormity of the worldwide quarantine and the impact. How are you coping? I waffle back and forth: part of me wondering if I should just sit and watch movies with the boys, have wine and temporarily forget, and/or stress and wallow. Or, get up and move and get into nature, presence myself to what I can do, enjoy having quality time with the boys and open myself to the opportunities that are
being offered in this new situation. Zoom school starts soon for us. The entire yoga industry has gone online. Local businesses are struggling. Community members and friends are struggling for their health and others are afraid of catching the virus. I truly believe each and every one of us will be tested during this time. Whether it's our own health, our loved ones, our business or otherwise. So, how can we make it through this? In the Buddha's teachings on the Four Noble Truths, the first teaching is the truth of suffering. That life consists of pain, suffering and misery. I wonder how well we are individually and collectively at being with these aspects of life? Old age, sickness and death just to name a few. And, of course, the problem of suffering goes much deeper because life frequently fails to live up to our expectations. Like now. Many of my teachers have offered the potent medicine of simply Bearing Witness. This suggests presencing ourselves to what is, as it is happening. It is a practice of presence. How can we bear witness to feeling powerless and in the grips of uncertainty during this time? How can we be present with what is, as it's unfolding? Neither denying or rejecting or ignoring the way things are. We build our capacity to witness disaster, uncertainty and fear as well as harmony and sublime joy. So, during this strange time.....Find ways to stay strong. Stay present. Keep engaged. Do not go cold and aloof. Bear witness to your heart and bleed loving kindness and genuine care. Acknowledge your own vulnerability and the vulnerability of all we love. Garner both the resiliency and love to withstand our fate. Stronger. More present. Healthier. More connected. With love, Kelly