Day #8 :: Compassion :: 31 Days of Devotion

Welcome to your practice for Day 8. 
Today kicks off our theme for week 2 :: Compassion. 
And in particular, Self Compassion. 

Let's get real with each other for a moment.
Practicing our best intentions for ourselves -- moment by moment -- is hard. 

If you have a perfectionist streak like me, you might be finding that mediation practice is just another opportunity to judge yourself, or that setting intentions and goals brings up a tendency to "rate" how you're doing at life. 
Perhaps the New Year conjures the desire to "fix" ourselves, or "get better" or be totally different. 

Phooey, I say. And yet, so so easy to do. As I share in today's video, being critical of myself has basically been my default mode in life. So if you have that tendency too, I totally feel you. 


It's also why we're taking a turn towards loving ourselves up for the next seven days-- and practicing resting with how we are --and who we are-- Right. Now. And without judgement.

All the messy bits and mangey emotions.
Not easy. Yet so worth it.
This is how a trustworthy friendship with ourselves is formed.

We'll be joined by a fantastic roster of contributing teachers this week, including Sydney Faith Rose + Ralph De La Rosa 

Just grab a comfortable seat, and perhaps a pen + paper to capture your own insights after meditation, and click the video below. 

Welcome to 31 Days of Devotion. You're doing Great. 

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Day #9 :: Compassion :: 31 Days of Devotion

When I hear the words "Holding Container" my mind immediately travels to the subway platform waiting for the N train.  
Or the line at the bank. Or the tiny jail cell that smelled like feet down at Queens County Central Booking that weekend in 2007.

But thanks to today's contributing teacher-- and all around wonderful human-- Ralph De La Rosa, I have a new and sweeter image that springs to mind when I hear those words: A safe place of genuine caring and healthy boundaries that a parent places a child in. 
And a space that we can create for ourselves during meditation. 

For today's practice, Ralph draws on the work of pediatrician and psychoanalyst D. Winnicott to instruct us on how to work with whatever comes up during meditation (and beyond), and place it in a loving container.

I've often heard "self compassion" spoken about as learning how to be the person that we needed when we were younger, and this practice puts that notion sweetly into play.

If you're curious to find out more about Ralph's work as a meditation teacher and therapist, you can visit his website, HERE. He has all sorts of great resources on his site. 

Practice begins at the 3 minute and 20 second mark. 

Just grab a comfortable seat, and perhaps a pen + paper to capture your own insights after meditation, and click the video above.  See you on the cushion! 

Day #10 :: Compassion :: 31 Days of Devotion

Welcome to your practice for Day #10.

Today we're joined by the wise + wonderful Ariel Dobshinsky, as we continue headlong into our theme of practicing compassion-- with a special emphasis on self-compassion... or as Ariel puts it, "befriending who we already are".  

In today's practice, Ariel leads us through a contemplation for moving beyond the four chambers of our own hearts, and slowly, thoroughly, inviting the world in.

Along the way she shares a bit about "the catch" of LovingKindness practice, and offers us an alternative to the pesky urge we have to want to fix, change, and adjust things -- ad infinitum. 

Just grab a comfortable seat, and perhaps a pen + paper to capture your own insights after meditation, and click the video above. Practice begins at the 5 minute 20 second mark.

One thing that I can tell you about Ariel is that she's a Pisces. Everything else you might want to know about this glorious human can be found at her website HERE.

See you on the cushion! 

Day #11 :: Compassion :: 31 Days of Devotion

Welcome to Day #11, and a continuation of our theme for Week #2 : Compassion. 

If you had the opportunity to practice with us yesterday, you know that we're on a mini-streak of working the heart open, beginning with ourselves and ending with the world. 

Today we're joined by Lodro Rinzler, who is the author of 10,000 books on meditation and Buddhism, (just kidding-- only 6 books) including How to Love Yourself and Sometimes Other People, and the very recent release Love Hurts.  

He talks to us a bit about love -- beyond the romantic variety, and the armor or 'cocoons' we use to shield ourselves from it. Just grab a comfortable seat, and perhaps a pen + paper to capture your own insights after meditation, and click the video below. 

See you on the cushion! 

 

Day #12 :: Compassion :: 31 Days of Devotion

After a string of wonderful guest teachers, I'm excited to be back with you as the host for today's practice which carries on with our theme for Week #2 : (Self) Compassion. 

A few years ago I encountered a poem by Sufi poet Rumi, which begins 

"This being Human is a guest house. Each morning a new arrival. 
A joy, a depression a meanness... Welcome and entertain them all." 

It's called "The Guest House" and you can read the poem in it's entirety HERE.

I've always liked this poem because it paints such a vivid picture of our emotional states as "guests" or "visitors" that we are all libel to host on occasion (even if they're messy or mean or walked in uninvited with mud on their shoes).

It's also on par for our practice today -- which takes a note from the Portuguese language -- and encourages us to welcome the totality of our experience in for a visit, as a practice of cultivating self compassion. 

If you want to skip my introduction and get right into meditation, you can forward the video to the 4 minute and 42 second mark. 

Just grab a comfortable seat, and perhaps a pen + paper to capture your own insights after meditation, and click the video.  See you on the cushion. 

Day #13 :: Compassion :: 31 Days of Devotion

Welcome to your Practice for Day #13 as we move into the penultimate practice for our week of Compassion practice. 

(I just like using the word "Penultimate". It makes "second to last" sound all regal and dignified. PENULTIMATE!) 

We're graced again by Ms. Sydney Rose as our contributing teacher, and once again she's offering us an extended 30 minute meditation following her words of wisdom. 

Today Sydney waxes poetic on Self Love through the lens of a fortune cookie, the Buddhist Pali Cannon, and the words of late + great poet/author/activist Maya Angelou, who once said"

"I don't trust people who tell me they love me, and don't love themselves."

Daaaaaang.  *Mic Drop.*

If you enjoy Sydney's teachings, you can keep up with her HERE.  (Her fresh new website + resources are launching in February. ) 

If you're itching to skip to the practice, you can forward over to the 7 minute and 6 second mark. 

Just grab a comfortable seat, and perhaps a pen + paper to capture your own insights after meditation, and click the video below. 

Because no one deserves your love more than you do. 

CLICK HERE TO COMMENT + JOIN THE CONVERSATION

Day #14 :: Compassion :: 31 Days of Devotion

Today I'm here to host our final Compassion meditation for Week #2, but first, I wanted to open up a dialogue with you all about my favorite 5 Letter word. 
Pizza. 
Just Kidding.
That's my second favorite. 

Trust. Trust is my favorite 5 letter word. A tiny little assembly of letters that means "the firm belief in the reliability, truth, strength and ability of someone (or something)."

It's the cornerstone of all healthy relationships, and this means our relationship to ourselves, as well. 

As I was writing this sentence, my coaching mind flipped on and pondered the question--
"How might I show up in the world, or what might I do, if I firmly believed in my own strength, ability and reliability?
Aka: Trusted myself?
Perhaps we should all take a moment to ponder that question. 

Today's topic is brief, but centered around Trust, which is at the soft and tender core of what we're practicing when we practice Compassion towards ourselves. Our whole self. Without censorship or judgement-- in the safe container of meditation.
If you want to skip to it, meditation begins at the 3 minute and 30 second mark. 

Just grab a comfortable seat, and perhaps a pen + paper to capture your own insights after meditation, and click the video above. 

May you be Happy. 
May you feel safe. 
May you feel at home in your body.
And may you Trust in your own inherent worth.