Friday, November 9, 2012

The Dharma Code

Gah, I am really having a hard time starting this. Wednesday's practice was so intense and beautiful. I want to be able to share that with you, but just saying "On Wednesday night, we explored a deep and beautiful yoga practice" sounds so trite.

I'm going to roughly explain to you what we did. If you feel inclined to try it for yourself, which I encourage, please do so. You may explore depths of yourself and understand your partner better than you ever have before. 

You will need a partner. ;)

But first you will need yourself, a pen, and paper. 

Imagine that you are 100 years old. You have accomplished everything that you set out to do. All of your loved ones have gathered to pay tribute to your life's accomplishments.
Select one person from this group, who will give a tribute speech to you. Now take about 10 minutes and, in their voice, write what they would say.

It was awkward at first for many of us to write tribute to ourselves, but I began to think of it as shaping my ideal self - creating who I want to be and what I want to have accomplished when I am 100.

Once you've written it all out, go through and circle the verbs - if they apply to something in particular, leave them together. If your verb is "appreciate", include what you want to appreciate. Ie: "appreciate beauty".

The consolidate everything you circled into one sentence beginning with something to the extent of, "I am here to..."

Then talk to someone about it. (hopefully they've written one too) You can help each other really pin down your sentences into their simplest forms.

What you've come up with is called your Dharma Code.

I feel like I'm in a good enough place that I can share mine.

"I am here to appreciate beauty, encourage openness, and to love"

We did a pretty long meditation on that, and then followed it up by finding our "anti-intention" before heading home for the night. Our teacher guided us through visuals and focused energies for about an hour.

To find your anti-intention, imagine that you died at 90, but despite your best intentions, you failed. Take a few minutes and write your eulogy from the perspective of someone who loves you, explaining why you were unable to achieve your goals.

Recalling the emotions that went into writing my own failings brings me back to that place. For many of us, it was difficult to write a tribute to ourselves, but our failings flowed out of us like rivers.

It weighed on me to the point that when it was finally time to share with my partner, it was difficult to get out - to admit to someone, outside of myself and my husband, what I fear for myself. I felt like I needed to preface it, like, "wow, this heavy...", but she was right there with me. It was difficult for all of us to admit these things to someone else - that most of us sometimes feel like we are not good enough to achieve our goals.

So, I left that night with a new resolve - the reassurance that I am never alone, and I can and will be the person I wrote a tribute to. 

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