Live your questions now, and perhaps even without knowing it you will live along some distant day into your answers.
-Rainer Maria Rilke (Opening quote, Meditations on Intention and Being: Daily Reflections on the Path of Yoga, Mindfulness, and Compassion, Rolf Gates
Introduction – In the introduction of Meditations on Intention and Being, Rolf questions us: “How do we change? How do we live well and love well if it means responding with wisdom and compassion in moments when we have always reacted with fear and anger? How do we turn the purity of our heart’s intention into the authentic way of being?” In this book, Rolf provides an ancient set of instructions on how to live and love well today.
Rolf asserts, in the telling of his own story, that “trauma robs us of much of the brain development that should take place in childhood and addiction makes a bad situation worse.” His practice of yoga helped him address that his brain did not work well with gauging reality, but it also facilitated brain growth, teaching him how to feel “safe and settled within the uncertainty and impermanence of life.” For Rolf, “yoga combined the sacred with the physical,” and let’s face it, most people have lost both.
Today’s news is brimming with a pot full of emotionally charged, nonsensical madness. In every avenue of my life, I feel compelled to scream: “Enough!” As a teacher, I ardently try to teach self-awareness and compassion, forgiveness, differentiation between a person and their behaviors, wonder at the simple bliss of being alive and being able to learn.
This morning, I dance, I move, I stretch, I practice, I write, my solace. Perhaps it is where the answers will come from when I am old and gray. I am alone in myself and this evening will be with my fellow dancers (perhaps crossfitters, too) doing what I do love. Is it possible to be a political animal and fight for injustices in the world’s workplace and also being a creature of compassion and equanimity? Whose “god” is this that we must trust in Florida schools? Must someone else’s faith be plastered on our buildings? What sense of safety is there in this craziness?