I went to a yoga class recently and the teacher chose to read a section of Sharon Salzberg’s column.
I will paraphrase it to say that we don’t have control over much, not our country, our town, our loved ones moods, we only have the 3 feet around us. A space that we get to make our own.
Isn’t that amazing! What a lovely way to put it. We only have a direct affect on the three feet around us. This to me was so AHHHHH for so many reasons:
- Its sacred space so what goes out and what comes in is also sacred
- I get to choose what goes in and out its my space
- What if everyone did this?
I can’t speak for anyone else, I know:
- you should be the change you want to see ~Gandhi
- when you let your light shine, you give others the permission to do the same ~Mandela
This concept for me was mind blowing. It completely swept me off my feet this idea of the 3 feet around me. It reminded me of a moment I had with my mom almost a year ago. I felt like I just needed a “real” hug from my mom. Real, because to me a hug is heart to heart, arms wrapped around the other person, completely presence, and only letting go when there is a sense of relaxation in the breath.
Its probably an Indian thing, but my hugs with my mom for the last 30-(Cough!) years are side hugs, or a variation of cheek to cheek touching or awkward placement of hand on shoulder or back (I can’t even put it into words because its so strange).
We were going to visit my parents that weekend and I had psyched myself up that I was going to be brave and ask for a hug, or throw myself on her and just hope for the best. So we get to my parents house, my husband and kids walk in do their thing (side note: kids always get a full frontal hug, like heart to heart, tight squeeze– yes you probably are sensing some jelly). I walk in last and everyone has dispersed through the house and its just my mom and me. 7 feet of distance between us standing in the front door/living room area., I feel like some Adele song should be playing in the background. My mom asks me, “ Do you need anything?”
DISCLAIMER: all this is said in Gujarati where there is no word for hug, sacred, space, or even communication. Seriously the language is meant for farmers. So I am doing my best to put it into understandable English (wink).
I said, “Yes, I need a hug. You hugged everyone else when they came in and not me.” She replies, “Oh is that what happened..ok. Here.” Walks in and BAM! Full frontal hug! I am proud to say I have been a member of this club for the last 9 months. Ha!
It was not easy, I know it sounds like such a silly example to some, but to me I was super nervous, I could feel the tingling throughout my entire body, my heart was in my stomach or stomach was in my heart, however that goes, the entire 2 hour drive down to them. I was rehearsing the many scenarios that could potentially occur. Sounds absolutely like I should be on some freak show. ITS A HUG!
BUT looking back, I realize I was scared for wanting my moms love to enter authentically into my sacred space. I was tired of our inauthentic expressions towards each other in moments where clearly what we are feeling and what were doing/how we were interacting are not in harmony. Someone has to change the template, otherwise where is the growth, where is the legacy you leave, where is the expression of your sacred self?
In this moment, months later, I realized most of the expressions I’ve had or others have had around me are by my choice, especially in the 3 feet. No one has entered the space if I didn’t want them to, with their negativity and blame and inauthenticity (man you better get outta here)! AND more important, I put out into the space what I want the world to see from me: love, joy, peace, CRAZY.
I’m still human, growing, learning and being is a part of the process…this has helped me greatly in seeing my truth and also in seeing others.
I wish for you, all that you want to see in your sacred space and the courage to make it happen 🙂