Standing in the shower where I always have my best epiphanies, I was thinking about Eloquence, and I heard something amazing inside that word.
El, I thought, hmmmm, an ancient Name for the Holy in many traditions, and cuanto, a word I hear all the time, in my San Miguel de Allende daily life: how much.
Eloquence, I thought, meaning: how much of the Divine can we have available to ourselves, and share, in our speaking, our yoga practice, our teaching, our writing, in our loving? Ah, great question!
Everything begins with yearning, with desire. In Sanskrit, Iccha, yes? We know this! Every time we experience Iccha, longing to connect in words, in our lives, in our yoga practice: we inhale the fragrance of this desire. And, we can exhale, in our efforts on the mat and in our shaped and shapely words, exactly that which brings us intimately closer to source.
Great! But how? How can we speak and write and move, holding in our hearts and minds that we really are part and partner in the cosmic re-cycling of the Divine back to the Divine?
As yogis striving to take the teachings off the mat and into our lives, I offer that we think of both speaking and writing as pranam: as a way we bow with beauty in this and the other world, and are heard both here and there. The prana we inhale as gift, returned to sender, as pranam!
As our words pass through the listening of others, we have an opportunity to reach and touch, soul to soul. Every time! The tool is right at hand: on our tongues! Praise the detail!
We can seek, as our practice, in our daily lives, the most beautiful, most clear and exact, most budded or blooming seed laden language, luscious, dappled with light and shade. Our speaking become both core and echo, both raven’s caw and our own cry, heart’s song and hearth’s hum, lucent and rich, as we passionately articulate, bone, marrow, and muscle, the story we, uniquely, each one of us, are here to unfold.
“Let your longing be the beginning of your doing.” —Gioia Timpanelli
Imagine committing ourselves to our inner Sarasvati! Knowing our limitlessness through our creativity, our eloquence, our ability to sing and dance and play! Inside our stories! Yes! We can do this! We can re-story our lives!
We can, in our speaking and writing, embrace and embody, the alive, juicy energy fields of shakti and shiva, for without that tattva, that thatness, what is our communication, our speaking, teaching and writing, except more “information” in an already over data-fied world?
A Practice of Eloquence, of praising the juicy detail, the tiny fabulous: the dragonfly’s wrinkled, earnest emergence, the fuchsia profusion of the trumpet vine, the soft nose of new calf, our children’s’ sturdy stance as seatide pulls on their saltglittered legs, our daughter’s eyes when she first-time falls in love, our lovers’ back, falling and rising in the envelope of sleep, naturally opens us to the Soul’s deepest questions:
“Who am I, really? What is my Purpose? Where is my true home?”
And answers will blow in on a swale of sweet!
We can experience right this minute that we are each of us high priestess or priest, that this body is the temple, that we were present at the beginning of this universe, and the falling away of the last. We know to build an altar of the ordinary; we teach and write, speak, move, and love, from this deep knowing.
We can come to trust, at long last or at least have glimpses that we are not separate from the mystery, and the mystery is not separate from us! There is a clue inside our very language though we feel ‘apart’—we are always, simultaneously, at that very instant, a part!
As yogis, and devotees of love, as humankind, as full-fledged menches, we are charged, hardwired, you might say, to awaken to soul: to remember our divine origins, the real jnana! The deep alignment! When we trust this, we open the gold engraved envelope we received at birth, with our name on it: and accept the cosmic invitation to the great carnival that is this life, here, and now!
A ticket to be a full participant! Go on all the rides! Wowee! And this celebration was always there, waiting, so patiently, for us to RSVP with a resounding, ecstatic, yes!
So, Bubbalahs, what are we waiting for?
We are called, actually, summoned (lucky us!) to fall madly in love with and praise this so utterly magnificent world, as ecstatic, wildly joyous, grief struck, all-hands on-deck alive ones! To build and nurture a practice of radical amazement, to seek, and find, true voice, true speaking. olly olly oxen free. We are it!
The holy hides in plain sight! Longing for us to play! Winner take all! Guess who wins!
“To Praise is the whole thing.” Rainer Maria Rilke
What if, every day, every minute, we noticed the miraculous simple clouds that build, billow and vanish, the bhakti diligence of the ant toiling under vast crumbs, the sheen on the hummingbird’s throat, the pomegranate’s bearing, somehow, astounding bud, flower and fruit all at once. We’ll go, eyes wide, seduced by luscious aromas, in a state of nearly-giddy delight, to the weekly tianguis, our Tuesday market, stalls piled to overflow with mangos, pinas, round red tomatoes that re-define ripe, strawberries succumbing to a kvell of cream, lured by vivid bouquets of yarns, begging us to make something beautiful! And we do!
We can be present, heart to heart, mano-a-mano with the fallen, the hungry, the despairing ones for they, (and now we understand this) are us, and we are them—lifting another, we lift ourselves.
When we begin, for we have only to try, even our failings count for the good in this effort to speak and write from the core, to practice the BeautySpeak of our resplendent lives, to exhale, express, what is most truly and profoundly alive, as essence, in all of us, this takes us, happily ever after, into the lap of Lakshmi!
Suddenly, with every word, we become the action, the kriya, we can take in the world, that moves all of us forward, together, (no hearts left behind), with renewed faith and joy, connected, as Lakshmi’s lotus, to the silty, silken, possibility-rich muddy bottom, that like us, opens to shine, today after today after today.
This, this is why, we end by saying, this time, and always, Thank you.
Judyth Hill… poet & provocateur? I am a stand-up poet, teacher, author, living wildly as ever, on our bougainvillea bejed ranchito, Simple Choice Farm, my FarmStay Retreat just outside San Miguel de Allende, Mexico: www.simplechoicefarm.com. I have published six poetry collections, including Hardwired for love, Presence of Angels, Men Need Space, and Black Hollyhock, First Light. innumerable magazine articles, & wrote the Poem-Heard-Round-the-World: Wage Peace (it’s right here in elephant journal!)and –woweeeee- I teach on-going poetry and writing classes internationally, and online, at www.judythhill.com. As the “Dharma Queens”, I collaborate with Anusara Yoga Master, Madhuri Martin, offering Yoga Teacher Trainings and Yoga/Poetry Dharma Workshops. I was described by the St. Helena Examiner as, “Energy with skin”, and The Denver Post as, “A tigress with a pen,” zowie!
Editor: Tanya L. Markul
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