Monday, May 24, 2010

Emancipation

"If it isn't an experience of newfound freedom, I don't think it is an authentic God experience." -- Richard Rohr

God doesn't make us smaller. When we are "emancipated" as Rohr mentions in his offering today, we are enlarged in our capacity to love - to be - to worship - to live. If I have to live a life of making myself smaller, then I'm not experiencing God fully. Of course, there is sacrifice and it's not about getting what I "want" all of the time. In the words of Mick Jagger - you can't always get want you want, but if you try sometime, you just might find you get what you need. But I digress...

I believe life isn't about making ourselves smaller or taking up too much space, but rather using the space we have wisely. Recently my way of using space (being) and/or doing life has shifted. Activities have been more physical than spiritual - more internal than external - more solitary than communal. I've been asking myself the question: Am I wasting time or am I expanding?

I was reminded this morning to never underestimate the power of morning pages. (Side note - I attempted journaling via 750words.com and while I love the premise, I continue to find there is more magic for me in using my fountain pen and a composition notebook.) Here is my morning response to my own question of wasting time or expanding:

I need to contract - pull back - some of the time or I'll pop like an overstretched rubber band. I need time to percolate - to practice and integrate what I'm learning, just like in yoga. You don't go from zero to perfect pose immediately. Keep returning to the restorative poses. Stretch and return. Push the edges and rest. Perhaps my mind is taking a break to integrate - I'm using my body to recuperate. Mind and body working together to find the balance and wholeness I desire. Ah, newfound freedom in this moment. That's emancipation.

Where are you being stretched? Does lying in "corpse pose" feel restorative or lifeless for you? Thoughts on balance? Emancipation?

"balance" SoulCollage card

18 comments:

Maureen said...

Finding the center and keeping a hold on it, because the center holds all you need to be.

Karen said...

Your posts are seldom easy--thought-provoking, deep, beautiful, well-written, yes--but easy, no. This is a topic I've been thinking about--and I've come to the conclusion that I have, indeed, been "living small." Not a satisfying conclusion. So what is it that makes us live small? Fear? Fear of what? For me, fear of taking too much--too much space, too many resources, too much time. Shame is in there, too...I have no solutions today, just more thinking to do...

Hope said...

I enjoyed that Rohr quote in my inbox this morning, too. It made me think about those moments when my world has gotten bigger and how scary and freeing that is.

The first time I did the corpse pose in yoga it was as if I felt connected to everything and everyone at once and I laid there and could not stop sobbing. It felt like being in a liminal space.

Jennifer said...

Where am I being stretched? In terms of Yoga my practice has integrated a deeper truth and awareness of waking the body for service. It's been a culmination of practicing first to calm myself, then for better health, now for all of Life and to utilize my body from my soul, and not to get more, but to give more...not a surprise directive I don't think.

Sometimes the only way the energy flows for me is to lay in "corpse". Such a wonderful and significant statement of surrender. I find this to be a wonderful pose for meditation too, especially visualizing bodies of water!

I have a different perspective on "balance" these days...I find that the overall "balance" comes from many moments of perceived imbalance of my time. I focus on what makes me feel strong - not my perceived strengths, and I notice when something drains me or makes me feel weak...sometimes something I once enjoyed now brings a sense of weakness and so now I might choose to lean toward something else.

I've been drawing a lot lately...an imbalance to my writing life, but it is serving a purpose - and I always come back to CENTER...which is my writing.

Morning pages - my pen and my paper are my greatest & most loyal friend.

I wholeheartedly agree that a true experience with God is liberation, anything other than that is questionable - and one's own experience would seem to unlock the chain of another, not harm or bind the other.

Thank you for your consistency in your blog - and for asking such thought provoking questions.

Tess said...

So since I first read this a few hours ago, I've been wandering around whistling Sir Mick's tune.

To take your water word of the year, isn't it like the ocean, that turns up in your soulcollage, and that Jennifer touches on? The ocean doesn't think about being overstretched, it just breathes in and out.

I have a practical question: do you use some kind of finishing glaze on your SoulCollage cards, and if so what? I've tried a couple and not been very successful, but they don't look quite finished without.

kigen said...

Lucy,
Beautiful pairing of emancipation and balance in your question, and I love this line:

"Push the edges and rest. Perhaps my mind is taking a break to integrate -"

A balance tipping back and forth and slowly coming to rest in the middle — combine the ideas of emancipation with balance and what do we get? Maybe something like perfect poise -- hold that posture for three minutes, and the world of blossoming flowers is ours!

Abbey of the Arts said...

lucy, just pausing here for a moment in the midst of a very full and expansive week. My heart is longing for some contraction and restoration very soon and so your journal words were a beautiful reflection of my own inner longings. And I love Tess' reminder of the rhythms of the sea. love to you friend, C

The Pollinatrix said...

It's funny, because my son used that exact same Stones quote with my two-year-old the same day you posted this.

I have to say I agree with you about journaling with pen and paper. Even with my blog posts, I often write them in ink first, at least the skeleton of them.

This idea of "restorative poses" really speaks to me right now, and is coming up in other quarters recently. I am being urged to work with standing meditation right now, a warrior pose. I'll let you know what my experience of that is, once I've worked with it a bit.

tinkerbell the bipolar faerie said...

Stretching provides me with a way to remind myself where my boundaries lie. I find that making the most of the space I've got is continual. I like the idea of 750 words.

SUNRISE SISTER said...

Yes ma'am - I'm with you on this yoga/rubber band journey. I've been away from blogging for about a month now and although I've missed my "pals" I think I was needing a break to lie in that "corpse" posish and do some thinking away from the keys.

This post of yours was just the thing I needed to close down for the evening and head off to a chapter of yet a new and different novel from the last three I've read in the last 3 weeks.....the reading, travel, and training has been an invigorating break - now if I can just shake this sniffy nose, I'm raring to go!

xoxo

drw@bainbridge.net said...

Thanks so much for speaking about this; I've been worrying a lot lately about these very issues -- a sense that I am pulling back into myself, that I'm shutting down a bit, not giving enough. I need to trust that it's all part of the process, and each piece is acceptable.

SUNRISE SISTER said...

I returned to this again today - such a nice post - very thought provoking as well as comforting to me:)

xo

lucy said...

wow - i'm amazed by the response to this little post. i guess when you combine yoga, soul collage and morning pages, you get a pretty cool response - especially when bringing in the idea of emancipation :-)

@maureen - nice to see you here again.

@karen - keep pondering, friend. there's plenty of space to go around, so i pray we'll each claim our own!!!

@hope - i find "scary and freeing" often go hand in hand... followed by repose.

lucy said...

@jennifer - i have read your full and rich comment several times - all the while nodding, yes, yes, yes.

the idea of balance and imbalance makes me think again of yoga. even when we are in a balance pose (like tree), there is movement and counterbalance (and in my case, often full=blown imbalance). it all works to make the pose (& me) stronger.

@tess - the whole water thing just continues to deepen for me. i made a "water" card on tuesday and it really surprised me with it's look. i need to ponder it some more and will like share it here soon.

re: your practical question - i don't use any kind of top coat. my cards are very low-tech - magazines and glue stick - i use as much glue as possible and adhere my pieces so they often look seamless (my preference).


@kige - "A balance tipping back and forth and slowly coming to rest in the middle" when i first read these words of yours, i heard in my mind "staying the middle" versus the place of "resting in the middle" which i like MUCH better!

i'm also not a fan of black and white combining to make grey in regard to living. i think life is fluid - there's my friend, water, again :-)

lucy said...

@abbeyofthearts - sending waves of restoration and receding tides your way... we certainly don't want your rubber band to snap!! xoxoxo


@ pollinatrix - your sweet son is just more proof sir mick is timeless :-)

oh, can't wait to hear what comes out of your warrior pose!!


@ tinkerbell - finding our OWN boundaries is so important. this morning during yoga, i opted to hang out in downward dog while others did plank. it became a great meditative place for me.

i tried 750 words for about a month and liked lots of its features, but found my creative flow was inhibited by the keyboard (and perhaps the count).

lucy said...

@ sunrise sister - your pals have certainly missed you!! bravo for listening to your own rhythms. i've been toying with how my two favorite restorative poses - child's & corpse - are bookends of life... i know there's a post in there somewhere. xoxoxo


@ drw - "trust" such a simple and challenging thing to accomplish. i've been reading "traveling with pomegranates" by sue monk kidd and she speaks of exactly this same challenge! methinks, it's probably universal for we creative types.

(oh, i just got a little shiver by including myself as a creative type.)

His Girl Friday said...

hmm, thoughts to ponder with this one. I feel a bit at a crossroad, and the whole freedom thing can a be scary undertaking (with regard to work....hubby is still around... ;))

ps how is the Celtic Evangelism book? looks interesting.

kigen said...

Lucy,
I enjoyed your rebuttal, and I see your point well made, about not needing to conflate black and white into grey — true. But union I was reminded recently in a beautiful and loving way also celebrates the goodness of each individual, that's what makes it a union.
Kige