Preparing to enter the second full week of September we come near to the end of the summer season. The temperature is fluctuating between days in the high 90’s and nights in the low 60’s and our awareness is on the shift towards Autumn. The evening falls sooner, the nights are starting to bring in a chill and those of us who wake up early are noticing less and less light accompanying us as we begin our day. School has started for those who are in education and even for those who are not the point in the cycle in which we return to structure has arrived.
The tasks of Autumn can be daunting when looked at from the perspective of summer which is wild, disorganized and passionate. So one role of practice for us is to begin to shift our state of mind to one that is able to see step by step, stage by stage and maintain focus on the immediate challenges ahead. Part of clarifying those steps is also to establish a sense of destination so that a map can be drawn.
In our lives outside of practice there are many potential destinations. Earning a certain amount of money, developing relationships, manifesting a living situation, taking care of unfinished business and the list goes on. One one level, the techniques to accomplish these types of tasks are required by the specifics tasks themselves. On another level however there is a fundamental motivation, patience and focus required of us if we wish to step forward.
It is those fundamental qualities that we can begin to elicit in our practice this week. We will transition towards more progressions in repetition, foundational strength and in so doing develop a clear sense of where work needs to be put. Whether we are incredibly strong in the lower body yet have not yet developed facility bringing weight into the hands, incredibly mobile yet have not found control or are connected to a strong source of energy that we are not yet able to channel, the necessary work ahead will reveal itself.
Our movement practice will consist of repetition of basic patterns that emphasize efficiency, balance and one pointed focus. We will maintain these repetitions until it has become clear that they have been integrated and are like a second nature. At that point it will become possible to investigate more complex patterns that challenge our spatial awareness, coordination and ability to integrate physical effort with mobility and balance.
Our meditation practice will mirror the movement practice in that we will emphasize the fundamental action of returning to presence. The supports of the physical posture, the breath and the energetic midline will become more accessible as we reconnect to them again and again. Once that connection has become fortified it will allow us, from the vantage point of clear presence, to observe the patterns of the mind.
I look forward to walking with you along this path.