I found more wisdom from walking again this month….
Often, at the beginning of a group walk, we first of all take part in 3 ten minutes exercises to bring us into the mindset of awareness. As a facilitator for this type of walk, I don’t always take part in the full walk, but I do always take part in the exercises. Part of what brings us together as a group is the collective participation I believe.
One of the exercises we do is to walk alone for 10 minutes, noticing patterns. These can be any patterns – visual, audible, patterns in colours, numbers, sounds, occurrences, anything in fact which strikes us as a pattern.
I took part in this exercise yesterday, but found that I couldn’t see, hear, or otherwise put my finger on any patterns. Even after a few minutes, and the two previous exercises, a pattern didn’t come to my awareness. I started to search. My eyes were darting around. I was eagerly looking for anything which I could call a “pattern” so I could tick my box of “yeah I got it too!”
I remembered something I was taught more than 10 years ago whilst I was training as a shiatsu practitioner. It was at a part of my training when we had become familiar with the theory of Traditional Chinese Medicine, the meridian pathways and the musculo skeletal system, and were starting to hone our skills into looking for the quality of the qi.
One day I was treating a channel of one of my fellow students… in much the same way as I was walking yesterday….. I was looking for patterns, looking for where the qi was at its most noticeable, looking for confirmation that I could feel the quality of the associated organ and element, then searching when I couldn’t sense those values.
My teacher knelt beside me and whispered… “don’t worry too much about looking for where the qi is my dear. Look for where it is not…. Look for the spaces. Notice the spaces and sit with them. This is where you will find the deficiency and where you will find the need. This is where you will find the connection. When you find the space, when you make the connection, the healing will happen, your work will be done”
So there I was, back in the shiatsu college, learning all over again about the beauty of just being… being there for myself, being there as a conduit for the universe to work the magick, allowing that which is to just be.
The patterns didn’t really matter anymore, because they would be there when I needed to see them. I could go back to the group at the end of our walk, and report that I hadn’t seen any patterns, and that I hadn’t walked with a question in mind, but my message from the Streets today was a reminder of the value of spaces, and that the value is not always in what we see, hear and touch, but in that which we can’t. The value is in the complete confidence that the universe has messages for us when we need to hear them….. and that isn’t every day. The value is in being able to say “I didn’t get it today….. but tomorrow I will”
“The music is not in the notes, but in the silence between” – Mozart
“Thirty spokes share the hub of a wheel;
yet it is its center that makes it useful.
You can mould clay into a vessel;
yet, it is its emptiness that makes it useful.
Cut doors and windows from the walls of a house;
but the ultimate use of the house
will depend on that part where nothing exists.
Therefore, something is shaped into what is;
but its usefulness comes from what is not.”
Translation from Tao Te Ching
Not everything can or should be measured. Not every day is a day to achieve. There is as much to be gained in giving recognition to that which you cannot do as giving impetus to that which you can. Peace comes from being OK with who you are instead of striving to emulate the other.