Buddhism Karuna Team

Slowing Down at Home

Erika – Karuna Digital Fundraiser

This time last year I had it in my mind as a sure thing that I’d be on the Karuna team retreat 2019. I’d have Kes, my son, weaned. He’d be sleeping separately and I’d be back to pre-baby ways of doing what I wanted in the timeframe I planned. Well a baby is for life, not just for christmas! So it was with some sadness but surprisingly with more acceptance and love than I’d expected, that I accepted I couldn’t join the team on retreat this year. Instead, I turned my mind to how I could best use this time and join you in the spirit of the retreat.

The four days gave me an opportunity to slow down. My time is incredibly structured at the moment and working fully from home – with the obvious pros – has the cons of no time nor space between home and work life. The retreat days meant I could slow down and ease into transitions more gently. I made more space for connecting with people; I went to my GFR group, had lunch with Sinhadakini from my kula and had an extended study session with Shraddhadhi. I used the phrase “I’m in no rush” more than once! 

I could have kept Kes in childcare all week so I could sit and meditate alone. However, something just didn’t feel right about that. Firstly, it was a precious chance to get flexible time with Kes. Secondly, there is such a momentum of movement and doing in my life at the moment, for the first time in my life meditation feels daunting and just another thing to do. Sitting watching the tall trees blow in the breeze in silence with Kes and a cup of tea was instead something I appreciated and found nourishing. 

A part of my practice is being with the perceived tension of ‘mine’ (my independence, my job, my wants, my vision of the world) and the need to let go to be something softer and bigger. To be in the present, to appreciate the beautiful details that are fleeting, to really allow the extraordinary to reveal itself within the ordinary. This week allowed more of that, and I entered into a difficult communication with a friend that we could easily not have made time for. From that communication, the extraordinary came forth.

I hope you all enjoyed your time at Rivendell and perhaps in 2020 I will join the team there… but no promises! 

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