Getting a Grip

Well, sometimes it’s all about letting go. Of attachment to daily practice, in this case. Ladies holiday: to practice or not to practice? I would not, if I attended a traditional shala, out of respect to the tradition of the community. But I don’t practice at a traditional shala. So inevitably I just go ahead and practice, since I’m making these decisions on my own.

Listen to my body? Ummm, that can be rather problematic. I have kind of ignored it over the years, when it didn’t want to go to the gym, or when it wanted to sleep instead of going to work or school, or when it didn’t think climbing a particular rock face was a good idea at all. I kept being suspicious that it was my mind that was complaining or being scared, and that perhaps my body was okay with everything, and that if I just take one physical step in the direction I intend to go…voila!, here I am, a couple of hundred feet up in the air, and hey, easier to climb up at this point, rather than down!

Okay, so I am attached to practicing 6 days a week. It’s well-defined and easy to remember. Sundays off. Period. But this morning I had an idea: gee, you’ve been awfully tired, the tradition says to lay off today–how about trying that out?

So I spend time reading instead of practicing and eventually find myself looking at a calendar of Moon Days, with this nice metaphorical explanation of the effects of the moon:

The full moon energy corresponds to the end of inhalation–an expansive, upward moving force that makes us feel energetic and emotional, but not well grounded. The new moon energy corresponds to the end of exhalation–a contracting, downward moving force that makes us feel calm and grounded, but dense and disinclined towards physical exertion.

Huh. Perhaps I will pay attention to how I feel around Moon Days. Which I usually also ignore. I know, I am revealing my ignorance–I should have attended to this sort of thing long ago. But here I am, making note of Moon Days in my calendar and thinking, “Whoa! If I don’t practice on Moon Days, I will actually be practicing 6 days a week one week and 5 days a week the next!” And the thought of a little extra rest, a break from my headstrong 6 days a week, sounds just delightful. Like a little present from the practice. To me, who always has to do things the hard way.


6 Responses

  1. Isn’t saturday the traditional rest day?

  2. Yes. There was some interesting speculation on the ezboard about why Saturday is the day.

  3. I used to practice right through my period, no matter what!I have finally been taking the 3 days off Ladies Holiday vacation.
    It was hard at first, but if I really listen to how I am feeling it makes sense. It’s nice to take a rest.

  4. I’m agreeing with Susan on this one, although I also used to practice through. Some days I wake up so excited to practice, and crap, ladies holiday. But I accept it, and relax, and treat myself to an extra glass of wine at night.

  5. I suspect that the corelation between the moon phases and the breath is not metaphorical at all, but actual.

    Like they are in fact the same phenomenon on a different scale.

  6. You’re probably right. I think I label concepts that are difficult for me to grasp “metaphors” until I am able to process and understand them more literally.

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