On Rest…

REST

“…is the conversation between what we love to do and how we love to be. Rest is the essence of giving and receiving; an act of remembering, imaginatively and intellectually but also physiologically and physically. To rest is to give up on the already exhausted will as the prime motivator of endeavor, with its endless outward need to reward itself through established goals. To rest is to give up on worrying and fretting and the sense that there is something wrong with the world unless we are there to put it right; to rest is to fall back literally or figuratively from outer targets and shift the goal not to an inner static bull’s eye, an imagined state of perfect stillness, but to an inner state of natural exchange.

The template of natural exchange is the breath, the autonomic giving and receiving that forms the basis and the measure of life itself. We are rested when we are a living exchange between what lies inside and what lies outside, when we are an intriguing conversation between the potential that lies in our imagination and the possibilities for making that internal image real in the world; we are rested when we let things alone and let ourselves alone, to do what we do best, breathe as the body intended us to breathe, to walk as we were meant to walk, to live with the rhythm of a house and a home, giving and taking through cooking and cleaning.

When we give and take in an easy foundational way we are closest to the authentic self, and closest to that self when we are most rested. To rest is not self indulgent, to rest is to prepare to give the best of ourselves, and to perhaps, most importantly, arrive at a place where we are able to understand what we have already been given.

In the first state of rest is the sense of stopping, of giving up on what we have been doing or how we have been being. In the second, is the sense of slowly coming home, the physical journey into the body’s un-coerced and un-bullied self, as if trying to remember the way or even the destination itself. In the third state is a sense of healing and self-forgiveness and of arrival. In the fourth state, deep in the primal exchange of the breath, is the give and the take, the blessing and the being blessed and the ability to delight in both. The fifth stage is a sense of absolute readiness and presence, a delight in and an anticipation of the world and all its forms; a sense of being the meeting itself between inner and outer, and that receiving and responding occur in one spontaneous movement.

A deep experience of rest is the template of perfection in the human imagination, a perspective from which we are able to perceive the outer specific forms of our work and our relationships whilst being nourished by the shared foundational gift of the breath itself. From this perspective we can be rested while putting together an elaborate meal for an arriving crowd, whilst climbing the highest mountain or sitting at home surrounded by the chaos of a loving family.

Rested, we are ready for the world but not held hostage by it, rested we care again for the right things and the right people in the right way. In rest we reestablish the goals that make us more generous, more courageous, more of an invitation, someone we want to remember, and someone others would want to remember too.”

‘REST’ From

The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words.

© David Whyte & Many Rivers Press 2015

Teaching Students to Trust Themselves

A pedagogic model is about forming a strategy for teaching that is based on principles that support true education. These principles serve to act as an invisible web that gives cohesion to the learning experience. Our pedagogic model is ‘in between the lines’ of everything we say and do within the context of the Yoga studio. – Donna Farhi

One of the things I appreciate most about the teaching methodology of my teacher, Donna Farhi, is that she teaches from the inside out. She encourages us as students to befriend our self and listen to the wisdom of our own perceptions first and foremost. As a trained classroom teacher and Yoga teacher, I am always interested in different teaching methodologies and how, as a teacher of two very different subject areas, I can best support learning in my students. 

The word educate is derived from the Latin word educare, which means to bring or draw out. This may seem contradictory to many of the teaching methods we experienced in school, when education was seen as a transfer of knowledge from teacher to student rather than a drawing out of the inherent intelligence within an individual. 

Whether you are a newly trained teacher, or a teacher with decades of experience under your belt, you are undoubtedly motivated to teach Yoga in the best way you can.  

– How do you create a context for your students to gain confidence in listening to their own perceptions?

– How do you pave the way to move students from dependence to independence? 

In her article, Teaching Students to Trust Themselves, Donna Farhi outlines some of the preliminary steps that lay the foundation for teacher and student to work together towards this independence.

What are your experiences, as a teacher or student, of these different approaches to teaching? If you feel drawn to do so, leave your comments below.

 *If you found this article of benefit, you are welcome to make multiple copies of this download for your students and also to share with your colleagues.

Donna Farhi leads intensives and teacher training programs internationally. In 2016, she will be holding workshops in NZ, Australia, China, UK & Europe. Her full teaching schedule can be found here. We are delighted to have Donna returning to the Gold Coast in October for her 5-day Spinal Integration Intensive.

Donna and Assitants May 2015
Donna Farhi and assistants – Origins of Alignment workshop on the Gold Coast, May 2015
Jackie, Sue, Donna & Kirsty

 

Full Moon Ritual

 

The Full moon has arrived. Each month, the full moon shines light into our inner world, inviting us to tap into our feelings, intuition, knowing and alignment, while gently reminding us of the power of surrender and release. Below is a beautiful Full Moon Meditation Ritual from Raelene Byrne, which can be done under the full moon’s rays to cleanse, calm and clear the mind.

Full Moon Ritual

Find a quiet place to be with yourself.

Take a few deep breaths to cleanse and clear.

Scan the area you are situated in, take in all the details, and have gratitude for what you have created in your physical world.  Remembering if you can create, you can uncreate.

Close your eyes and just feel the ease of the breath as it flows in and out of your body.

Connect to the earth beneath your feet and then connect with the moon above.

Breath into your heart space a few times then connect with the moon and ‘intend’ you are bringing that moonbeam straight into your heart. Breath with this energy for a few moments.

As you intend, imagine or visualise this moon energy filling your heart space, allow it to expand with each breath, until you ‘know’ or have intended you are sitting in a huge bubble of moonlight energy. All your energy bodies are being lit up, your physical body is full of this light.

As you sit in this, surrender to it, and give permission for any and all things that no longer align or have purpose to dissolve.  Feel or see this bubble expand and constrict with each breath you take.

Patiently and lovingly, stay in this light filled bubble for a few moments. Allow the moon rays to cleanse, clear, calm your monkey mind.

If you are ready for a new start, a new direction, a new purpose, then in this time, ask your soul/spirit to help you have awareness of any other ‘unknown’ limitations still hidden, to be offered to the light of surrender, to be dissolved. You may not be shown exactly what it is, but you will feel something shift.

Once that is done, TRUST yourself, you will feel it, take a breath and imagine/intend that bubble of moon light to shrink back to your heart space. See the connection from your heart to the moon through this ray of support. Visualise that ray of light between your heart and moon for a few more breaths. Offer gratitude and thanks, then disconnect.

Keep your eyes closed for a few moments to have full awareness in your body

When you open your eyes, if you feel the need, write down whatever you want to release to this moon cycle. Burn the paper, be safe with this and cast the ashes wherever you feel is important for you. Freedom arises when we let go.

Happy full moon.

Like to know more about the full moon? Here are some great links…

The Science: How Moon Phases Work
The Spiritual: Full Moon In Virgo (22nd February, 2016)

Blessings,

Kirsty Innes x