Loving Our Bodies – Loving Ourselves
(and Who Are We? btw…)
A Support Group for Women Using Self-Inquiry with Sumitra Judith Burton
Tuesday, August 1st and weekly thereafter
Many of us find it difficult to accept and love our bodies and the more subtle parts of ourselves, just as we are. We’ve struggled from early in life with images of thinner, taller, prettier, better endowed, etc. bodies that we believe are the right and best way to look and be. We are skillful at caring for others, and yet often can’t find compassion and peace for ourselves. And some of us have spent so much time caring for others, we’re hardly in touch with who we Really Are. Perhaps how we feel about ourselves is a reflection of how we meet our world in general.
How, in this moment NOW, right in the midst of our lives, can we find acceptance and even love for ourselves — embracing our bodies and everything else about us, exactly as we are? Is it possible to fully inhabit every big and little part of ourselves, with compassion and love? Can we truly meet and release old patterns of shame, depression and anxiety that often stem from earlier trauma?
Join me in an exploration of this theme, using the Living Inquiries NOW Practice and a new Trigger Worksheet (recently developed by Scott Kiloby and Dan McLintock at the Kiloby Center for Recovery). Both tools are wonderfully effective for practicing Self-Inquiry – exploring what is Here Right Now in This Moment, what it seems to mean about me and how the stuck beliefs can be relaxed and released. It can be magical to see how what arises now is hooked with the past (velcroed, as Scott says) – with thoughts, feelings and sensations.
Each week we will start with a guided resting as we come together, and then will use the NOW practice to check in and see what’s present in our current experience. We will take time to share our experiences with both the NOW practice and the Trigger Worksheet, and use other Living Inquiries tools, such as “mining,” to help discover what might be lurking beneath the triggers. In this way we can become proficient at Self-Inquiry and gradually unhook our old, stuck beliefs about the different aspects of ourselves, relaxing into a more natural state of self-acceptance and compassion.
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Getting to know you: An Embodied Monthly Gathering
With Lisa Meuser
Sunday August 19
When we don’t know ourselves we aren’t aware of thoughts we’re having, or our relationship to them. When we don’t know ourselves we aren’t aware of what triggers us, or even that we’re triggered. When we don’t know ourselves we don’t know what we need or want, or what has been missing with regards to our needs and wants. When we don’t know ourselves we don’t know what we’re feeling, or if it’s safe to feel.
When we don’t know ourselves we become at the mercy of forces outside ourselves to take care of us because we don’t know ourselves well enough to take care of ourselves. When we don’t know ourselves it’s like having a party and all the guests showing up with masks on. Can you imagine such a party? I’m guessing there would be very little intimacy or connection. How can we love ourselves, how can we have compassion for ourselves, if we’re disconnected from ourselves?
When we know ourselves we are aware of our thoughts and if they have significance for us. When we know ourselves we know our needs and wants, and how to get them met without resorting to drama or manipulation. When we know ourselves we’re familiar with sensations, and how to connect with them in a way that feels safe.
When we know ourselves we can develop a reservoir of inner resourcing, which empowers us and makes it possible for us to hold space for ourselves, love ourselves and offer compassion to ourselves. When we know ourselves we no longer feel like children caught in adult bodies, but capable human beings. When we know ourselves, we are aware- we are self-aware.
It’s easy to get to know ourselves, but it takes time, and often some guidance, as we learn how to do so. For most of us, no one has helped us to really get to know ourselves. In fact, too often we’re taught and encouraged to put all our attention outwards, and we lose our own sense of self in the process.
This monthly gathering will focus on practical and experiential exercises that are specifically designed for the development of self-awareness. There will be time for questions and optional sharing amongst group members. We will meet for 60-75 minutes on zoom. Each call will be recorded, and yours to keep.