Thursday, 30 June 2016

Silence ... Spaciousness ... Safety

I haven't written on my blog in about a year (more of that later) and I saw this draft in the draft that had been saved.  This retreat was over a year ago and I have since been to the BRC since then, on another beautiful retreat which I will share sometime soon, but I felt it was important to share this.  So from a year ago ...

I spent this past long weekend on a silent retreat with Sue Cooper at the Buddhist Retreat Centre (BRC) in Ixopo.  It was really profound. There were thirty two participants which at first threw me a bit as I found that quite a large number and I was sure it would impact the retreat as there were just too many of us.  However, I was pleasantly surprised at how it all just flowed with such ease and magnificence.

There was a lot of opportunity for meditation, from sitting meditation, to walking meditation, Chi-kung movement meditation, "mindful" tea and of course everything in silence was a like a meditation on its own.  Once a day we had what Sue terms a "talking" meditation, which in essence is circle sharing, where everyone has a turn to share where they are at and what they are experiencing.  Only Sue responds to each person.  I always find circle sharing very powerful and the more we delved into the silence and meditation and the more we opened our hearts, the more real and deep and from the heart the sharing become.  I absolutely loved it.  It takes huge courage to be vulnerable and the resistance can be huge, but the release and the power in that is amazing.

One of my my Core Desired Feelings (Daniele LaPorte's "The Desire Map") is Spaciousness and that was definitely something I fully experienced at the BRC in those beautiful surroundings among the hills in Ixopo.  Silence for four days plays a huge role in creating space in the mind and in the heart too and my whole being was moved by all this immense spaciousness.  It was beautiful.

Sue shared many things with us this weekend including this beautiful poem which really spoke to me and on reflection,  helped find a sense of safety within my own heart ...

Having loved enough and lost enough,
I am no longer searching,
just opening.
No longer trying to make sense of pain,
but trying to be a soft and sturdy home
in which real things can land.
Mark Nepo

If you can do one of Sue's silent retreats, Sue CooperI strongly urge you to gift yourself with one of these.  They are profound.