Some words on the experiences and support found through Mirka’s teleconference program from and old friend and student, Scott Hodgman, who has been with us on the Gift of Awareness teleconference, is currently taking the Healing Art of Pranayama, and plans to join the entire, year-long teleconference program in 2015.
We move through space and time, through our homes and cities, through daily routines and to-do lists. Every now and then, maybe, we checkout to reconnect with God, our source, highest self, Person, nature, Cosmos, our sustenance, name it how you will. Its there always waiting for us.
Recently I went on retreat with the American Viniyoga Institute. The Heart Mind Retreat remains a regular hope and longing within my own calendar to relink to the tradition and renew my spiritual discipline. (Thats seems oxymoronic, no…? Can I really discipline my spirit? Maybe as it exists in this embodied-life, the two inextricable and mysteriously interwoven. But then again, being Catholic and a scholar-practitioner of Yoga, most of that statement radiates with my personal faith commitments and not necessarily any universal ideas. Thankfully, as a father of two precocious children, I am constantly challenged to keep it real and meaningful. As I write this, my son is sliding is hand under the door to my office, beckoning me to come and build legos with him.) Okay, that was one long aside.
Prior to the retreat, I participated in the Gift of Awareness teleconference (virtual-sangha might be more apt). I found that the meditative-visualizations used in the teleconference turned my mind towards that space retreats often create. Preparation for going on retreat it seems, for my attention and its play in the field of awareness was turning inward towards the Blessed Simplicity that awaited in the Heart Mind Retreat. Now I’m back from Austin. Once again, I’ve entered into virtual-snagha (Healing Art of Pranayama teleconference). So too pranayama returns me I’ve discovered, really my nervous system, to that retreat space and its Blessed Simplicity.
Slowly, these practices – entering the virtual-snagha, meditation, pranayama – provide moments, opportunities of psycho-somatic relinking with the Heart-Mind experience.
In the Heart-Mind experience opens the possibility for a turning inward. In the contemplative experience, deeply attentive to the Mirror of my Soul, lies the possibility for my Heart’s desire to shine forth – istadevata – filling my awareness.
The practices relink us body-soul to the Heart-Mind, in the Heart-Mind experience there is an inward turning, and upon the wondrous landscape of our interiority a Mystery awaits. Not to be solved, but immersed. Maybe there’s a rhythm to this, a cadence of entering that Blessed Simplicity, leaving it only to relink with it through awakening a psycho-somatic memory – smrti. Knowing escapes me, but I have a desire to find out; find out not with the grasping mind but the sweetness of child’s beckoning call to come play!
In Peace and Love,
—Scott Hodgman comes to us from Berkeley, California where he studied theology at the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley. Prior to that Scott studied at Georgia State University where he completed his Master’s degree in Religious Studies focusing on Christian Hindu Inter-religious Dialogue. The author of Striving for Authentic Identity and a number of essays on the Christian Life, Scott is active at the Monastery of the Holy Spirit in Conyers where he leads retreats on Christian spirituality and contemplation. Blessed with two beautiful children since moving to Georgia in 2009, Scott and his wife Jessica, Cecilia and Sebastian have made Atlanta, Georgia their home.