{chin up} love

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

In this scene we find our heroine standing forlornly in front of heavy steel doors. The doors have been painted a deep blue, a shade that is neither cheerful nor foreboding. We can see the paint has been chipped away and scuffed in many places, indicating they are well used, but for what? We see our heroine shiver, is it apprehension or just the unusual chill that hangs in the air that spring morning? We see that, despite her best efforts, her fringe is still a bit askew and there is ketchup smeared on her cheek. Her face is a mask of calm confidence over a sea of nerves and anxiety. After several more moments, our heroine draws in one last deep, shuddering breath. As she does so, the camera pulls back from the scene and we see, for the first time, that she is not alone. No, she is accompanied by two small, beautiful children. The children, full of vim and vigor, are clearly unaware of their mumma's uneasiness. As she slowly releases that last sweet breath she blinks back a hint of tears and then, clutching tightly to the small hands of her children, leans her shoulder into those heavy doors to open them. As they open she draws deep on her very last ounce of strength and courage to announce to those inside...

"I am here...to register my son for kindergarten."

Ok, so maybe I'm being a wee bit dramatic. But not much!

It was, honestly, the craziest thing.

How, HOW, is my baby old enough to be starting real, regulated school this fall?

Seriously.

And, registering him? Surreal.

The women in the office had me fill in a form and photocopied his birth certificate.

Aaaaand, that. was. it.

I don't know what I expected, but this, for me, was monumental.

Actually, I do know what I expected...I expected them to open their arms to me and hug me tight while telling me how incredible their school is and that they will love P and provide him with the very best while he is there, just as I would.

And then I expected there to be a flashing "Congratulations" sign (to congratulate me for being so brave, obviously) once I finished filling in the form and maybe some balloons and streamers falling from the ceiling. Oh, and maybe those cute kids from Glee could have magically appeared and performed a musical number where P, B and I got swept along in their routine? Pageant smiles and jazz hands?

Instead, I stood at an office counter, filled in a form, thanked the ladies for the information package they provided and went back out the same doors that, only ten minutes earlier, had seemed so symbolic.

The moment we were all loaded safely back into the truck, I phoned my mom on her cell phone. A little background; my mom is a teacher and we only ever phone her cell during the day in case of extreme emergency, so she always answers with a very hesitant "Hello?", partly, I think, because she is bracing herself for bad news and partly because, well, she is answering her phone in front of her class of curious sixth graders.

This call was no different than any other emergency call I've had to make to her...her cautious "Hello?", me on the other end of the line fighting back tears and trying to keep my voice steady. Only, this time it really wasn't an emergency. Still, bless her big heart, my mom took five minutes away from her class to sympathize with me and even get a bit teary herself.

And there you have it folks. My little man, my "Captain Independence", really is growing up.

Below is the picture that I used for P's birth announcement...he was only eleven days old.


{seventh spiritual law} love

Friday, April 6, 2012

Huzzah!

We've made it to the end of the week, the long weekend and our seventh, and final, spiritual law!

So on Saturday's we practice the Law of Dharma.

Dharma is HUGE. It is huge in it's importance and huge in it's scope.

Very basically, it states that every being has a unique fit in our world's order. And when we match our unique abilities and talents to the world's needs, our purpose, or dharma, is realized.

The three major components of the Law of Dharma are:

1) Our ultimate purpose is to discover our higher Self, connect to our Spirit.

2) We must cultivate an awareness and expression of our unique abilities. Take the time to make a list of the things that you absolutely love to do, things that bring joy to yourself and those around you when you are doing them...this is connecting to our dharma.

3) Serve others.

Along with awareness of the above components, we can practice the Law of Dharma by:

1) Losing track of time. When we are fully engaged and in love with our actions time seems to fly by; seek this.

2) Ask yourself "If I had all the money and time in the world, what would I do?". More often than not you will be surprised that you in fact don't need all the money and time in the world to actually do what it is that your heart deeply desires.

3) Shift the intention behind each action to one of helping and serving.

One last time...read over the Law of Dharma and it's practices first thing Saturday morning, practice all day, re-read the law at bed time and sit with the awareness that you have just completed and entire week of working to better yourself and our world.

And then, should you so desire, start right back into it again on Sunday!

Thanks again, SO MUCH, for practicing with me this week.

Have a safe and happy hoppy (ba dum dum chhh) Easter weekend!

Oh, and here's my end of the week phone/instagram purge...follow me @kaelklass if the suspense of waiting an entire week is just too much for this photographic magic!


{sixth spiritual law} love

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Two more laws to go and we have completed one full week of practice!

It's a nice way to do it, hey? One empowering focus a day, one week at a time. And, of course, come Sunday you can start the whole shebang again!

Friday's practice is the Law of Detachment.

Super important to know that detachment, as used in this law, does not mean we disengage or quit caring. It doesn't mean that we give up our intention to fulfill our dreams, but that we give up the attachment to the outcome. Thus we become process oriented as opposed to outcome oriented. Know that attachment is rooted in fear and insecurity and that attachment will most certainly create rigidity. So, we give up attachment but, holy shit, we fortify and bolster and grow our passionate intention.

Odd as it may sound, intention and detachment are the golden ticket to a flexibility that will enable us to fulfill our life goals.

Alright lovelies, let's get down to business with the practice:

1) Practice detachment...just like the law says! Practice stepping away from rigidity. Commit yourself to a life where you don't rigidly impose your ideas of how things "should" be; embrace the freedom of allowing yourself, and those in your world, to be natural. Stay engaged and passionate, but let go of control and force.

2) Give uncertainty a big old bear hug. Squeeze it in close and be comfortable, or even downright happy, with the feeling of not knowing, not controlling. You might just be surprised at how your creative and spontaneous self rises to the occasion of problem solving in the midst of perceived chaos. Think of who you were as a child; curious, innocent, unstructured, free and completely secure with not having everything mapped out and planned and solved...try and embrace that, at least a wee bit. I mean, don't quit your job and move back in with your parents, but find the pockets in your life where you can start to grow this little seed of joy in the face of the unknown.

3) Lastly, be aware of the roles we play in life; mumma, dad, sister, brother, friend, athlete, teacher, student, employee, artist, nerd, extrovert, supervisor, etc. Know that these are just the roles we play and that when they are stripped away we are actually our soul, our spirit; it is our spirit costuming up for each role. Still, we step into each role with full awareness, intention and passion and then let them go when they are no longer needed, returning home to our true Self.

As always, read the law and it's practices first thing in the morning, practice all day, read once more before bed and be aware of where your work lies.

Side note: I have found that with each law there are specific little, sometimes big, areas of my life that I will especially struggle with. Sometimes these little struggle zones stay the same for a while, sometimes they change week to week. But this law? This law, week after week, has shown me that my work with it lies in my parenting. Detachment and the wee men? SO HARD...on so many levels.

Fact: The first picture of our bird houses was taken three, THREE, days ago...the second one this morning.

Spring, you are a crazy and unpredictable thing.




{fifth spiritual law} love

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Thursday's spiritual law is the Law of Intention and Desire.

If we want, or desire, something to grow stronger in our lives we must direct more of our attention to it. On the flip side, if there is something we wish to diminish in our lives, we must withdraw our attention from it.

At the most basic level of explanation, we are what our deepest desire is. We must know exactly what that desire is; give it our full attention and intention. And, never, ever, focus on what we don't want or it will surely come our way.

Pretty simple, hey?

Focus on the good, the desires.

Be free of the negatives, the energy drains.

Tomorrow try to incorporate the following practices into your day:

1) Have absolute clarity about your intentions and desires. Write down, regularly, what your wants are; relationships, community, self evolution, knowledge, creative expression, material goods, what you want to do for the world, how you want to connect to Spirit and so on. Write it all down and then modify your list as your desires are met or transformed. Observe how your list evolves. Taking the time to write down what we most desire is kind of like putting those desires on a little super highway to fruition.

2) Now that we've written down our intentions and desires, brought them to conscious awareness, we must surrender their outcome entirely to the universe. This is a huge leap of faith and something that will not seem at all natural or comfortable in our society's conditioned mentality of control, but just think back to Wednesday's Law of Least Effort and let. it. all. go.

3) Practice awareness in each moment in all of our actions.

Say it with me now...read and review the law and it's practices first thing in the morning, practice your heart out all day, read and review one last time before bed and then surrender to the universe and the sweet release of sleep.

*bonus exercise*
Find some quiet time and close your eyes. Think of what you want twelve months from now. Think of where you will be in terms of love, relationships, connectedness, peace, material abundance, creative flow and physical health twelve months from now. See the whole, complete picture. Next, see yourself as having already accomplished all of it. It is done. See everything that is happening around you, see yourself in that place twelve months from now; how you act, how you look, how you feel, who is there with you, what your environment is...imagine, completely, that you are already there.
Then let it all go. Surrender your vision, your intentions, your desires to the universe and know that, in time and on one path or another, they will all be realized.

Happy practicing everyone!

And thank you so much for checking in day after day...I know this week has strayed pretty far off the beaten path of my usual posts, but I've really enjoyed sharing this yoga passion of mine with you.

Oh, fact, that spring snowstorm I had alluded to in this post? That beast is here. So we didn't get up to much today and I didn't use my camera even once. I do, however, have a photo from yesterday, before our world was once more blanketed in snow.



{fourth spiritual law} love

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Congratulations! You've made it to Deepak Chopra's fourth spiritual law...the Law of Least Effort!

There are a couple of things I love about this law. Number one being that it is the Law of Least Effort, and I, being the lazy effer that I am, am completely down with that! Also, it is Wednesday's law. Hump day people, we are on the hump day law!

There's really not a lot to explain about this law so let's get right to how to practice, shall we?

1) Practice the path of least resistance; resistance is immediate feedback that something is not right. Practice acceptance; accept that how things are right now is exactly how they are meant to be. This acknowledgement that everything is in it's right place, at this moment, will help each situation evolve to a new level so much more so than struggling ever will. After you have fully accepted what is present in your life, make a dedicated commitment to making more conscious choices...what? conscious choices? why, we just practiced that all day long with Tuesday's Law of Karma!

2) Once you have fully accepted things as they are, take ownership of the responsibility for the challenge you are facing. Bear in mind that every single challenge is, in one way or another, an opportunity; transform these disguised opportunities to the greater benefit!

3) Become completely defenceless. You do not need to deplete your energy by defending your point of view or trying to convert people to your "side". Just remain open and flexible to all points of view.

The usual law abiding routine applies. Read the Law of Least Effort's practices first thing in the morning, practice all day, read once more at bed time and be aware of how it went.

And, just in case you are tuning in to my blog for the first time (welcome!), here are the first (Sunday's), second (Monday's) and third (Tuesday's) laws and their practices.

And, obvi, no post would be complete without a photo or two!

Here's B...this little man is all about the Law of Least Effort.


{third spiritual law} love

Monday, April 2, 2012

"You don't have a soul. You are a Soul.
You have a body."
- C.S. Lewis

Oh man, I want to give that quote a giant high five and then tattoo it across my heart.

And here we are, already to Tuesday's spiritual law!

So tomorrow we practice the Law of Karma. You can also think of this one as the Law of Cause and Effect.

Karma, or cause and effect, is the concept that for every single one of our actions there will be a reaction that will return to us in kind; as we sow, so we reap. If we consciously choose actions that will bring joy, love and success to others, the yield of our karma will be joy, love and success.

The biggest, most important way to understand and use the Law of Karma is to become consciously aware of every single choice we are making in every single moment. Everything about our present is a result of choices we have made in our past. Know that in every. single. moment. we have a choice; we can consciously choose our direction.

Practice the following tomorrow:

1) Just as I said above, recognize that in every moment of our lives we have a choice; infinite choices actually. We can make a choice rather than falling back on our patterned reflexes that are triggered by certain scenarios/people with predictable outcomes. Make every choice consciously and know that of all the choices presented to you, there will be one that is evolutionary and will bring you closer to what you seek.

2) Know that our conscious choices have a ripple effect. Work to heighten your awareness of how your choice will effect others and, obviously, strive to make choices that impact others in a positive way.

3) Pay close attention to the sensations in your body and then trust, trust, trust. "Good" choices will bring comfort to the physical body; relaxed muscles, ease of breath, lightness. "Bad" choices will bring discomfort to the physical body; tension, shortness of breath, even nausea. This is really as simple as listening to and trusting our hearts or our "gut instinct".

And, you guessed it, read over the law and it's practices first thing tomorrow morning, practice to the very best of your abilities all day, then read the Law of Karma one more time at bed and have a beautiful sleep knowing you actively chose to create a better exisence for yourself and your loved ones.

Also, this bad-ass wizardry went down in our house today!


Seriously, I came around the corner and there was B, the wizard, having this little show down with a completely free-standing broom! P and I both tried to do it and failed. Yeah, that's right, I birthed a wizard!


{second spiritual law} love

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Hello, hello.

How was the day?

How was it to work with the first spiritual law?

It's not easy work, for sure, but, really, when is the important work ever easy as pie?!?

The real gift would be if we could all just maintain our connection to our spirit the way kiddos do. For reals, I look at the wee men and am straight up jealous of how they are right here, right now. Aaaand then I am grateful to them because they are my reminder of what I am working on.

Ok, so tomorrow, Monday, we work with the second spiritual law of yoga, which is *dun dun duhhhh* the Law of Giving and Receiving!

Everything in our world operates through dynamic exchange and circulation; everything is continuously changing...our bodies, our minds, our universe. And when we try to control the circulation and change we create discomfort for ourselves and our world on varied levels. Think of our breath; if we try to hold our breath we will reach a point where we experience discomfort. We need to let go of our inhaled breaths, giving back that air with an exhale, just as we need to receive fresh air through the next inhale. The very act of breathing illustrates on the most basic level why we must be open to giving and receiving in order to keep living.

Another way of thinking of this law is that we can neither hold on to or shut out anything forever. Resistance is futile, so open yourself up to both giving and receiving!

Lastly, and very simply, the more that you give, unconditionally and from the heart, the more you open yourself up to receive.

How to practice you keenly wonder?

1) Focus on your breath. If you have some experience with yoga, this won't come as a surprise as connection to breath is kind of a big deal in the world of practicing yoga. So, just like in yoga, bring your full attention and awareness to your breath and notice how effortless the giving and receiving of it is.

2) Give gifts. These gifts can be material, compliments, your full attention to another person, kind thoughts, really listening, gratitude for a persons presence in your life and so on. These gifts we give can be almost anything, but they must be given consciously and from the heart. Through the gifts you give and the gifts you receive, make a commitment to spread love, joy, appreciation and acceptance.

3) Be absolutely grateful. Take some time to close your eyes, or even write down, all of the things and people you are grateful for. When we are acting from a place of one hundred percent gratitude there is no room for our ego. As you reflect on all that you are grateful for, keep in mind that both the good and the bad are worthy of gratitude as they both encourage growth.

And, just like yesterday's practice, read over the law and it's practices first thing in the morning, practice throughout the day, read once more at bed time and just notice where your work lies.


I'll leave all y'all with a photo series of the ridiculously determined P. Yep, he's riding off of a six inch jump that he made Kev build for him.

Oh, and yes, the photos aren't the best quality, but there was the sweetest little girl at the park who literally squealed when she saw my camera, so she was "helping" me!





 

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