Tag Archives: breathing

Re-Love-ution

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Tonglen is a breathing meditation practise from the Buddhist tradition. The word means Giving and taking, and the technique is a practise of active compassion.

We’ve all seen the memes ‘Breathe in the Good, Breath out the bad’ tonglen turns that on it’s head. We Choose to breathe in pain and suffering, to acknowledge and transform it within our own hearts.

Every story on earth involves some degree of challenge, pain and difficulty, these give our lives the context and depth that is required to rise to our highest potential and create meaningful lives.  In a world can often seem overwhelming in its complexity, Tonglen offers a simple yet powerful tool to begin the process of transformation.

The power of the heart is not to be underestimated, if we want to change our lives and our worlds there is no better place to begin.

tonglen

Tonglen instruction  

“On the in-breath, you breathe in whatever particular area, group of people, country, or even one particular person… maybe it’s not this more global situation, maybe it’s breathing in the physical discomfort and mental anguish of chemotherapy; of all the people who are undergoing chemotherapy. And if you’ve undergone chemotherapy and come out the other side, it’s very real to you. Or maybe it’s the pain of those who have lost loved ones; suddenly, or recently, unexpectedly or over a long period of time, some dying. But the in-breath is… you find some place on the planet in your personal life or something you know about, and you breathe in with the wish that those human beings or those mistreated animals or whoever it is, that they could be free of that suffering, and you breathe in with the longing to remove their suffering.

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Fear-less-ness Bunnies and Breathing

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A short while ago, the cutest little white bunny turned up unexpectedly in my life – or more precisely in my front yard. Friendly enough to have been somebody’s pet at some stage, he liked company, offerings of flowers ,(dandelions!) and skritches around the ears. He didn’t much like being picked up, and even though we repeatedly invited him into our back yard he preferred as most wild creatures do, freedom and open space.

When we listen, life talks to us in many different ways. Having happened upon my furry friend, I decided to look into the spirit medicine of the rabbit; I found that they traditionally represent sensitivity, abundance, fertility, desire, creativity and anxiety. Some Native Americans refer to the rabbit as the fear caller. “Fear sends out a certain vibrational energy that may attract the very thing we fear,” writes Ina Woolcott. “Fearful thoughts reproduce (like rabbits) and manifest what we fear.”

Perhaps I need to be careful, or at least more creative about what I fear….

Much like we all do, at times I find myself falling down the rabbit hole of fear: will I have enough? Am I doing enough? Do enough people like me (or my posts on Facebook?).

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