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Heart News

Align - Love - Thrive

Our heart team proudly curates a set of teachings, practices and information each month and season to help you live a life of balance, alignment and connection: Yoga! Click through regularly to explore, learn and grow on the path. 

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May 2024: The Bravery of Vulnerability

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Beloved community,

Welcome to May! I am grateful for the connectedness and richness of learning, practicing, sharing, and feeling in this community. We practice by choosing to show up as ourselves, for each other, with a willingness to believe that we have an active role in creating our experiences. We can choose to bring a richness and quality to everyday life, just as much as we can choose to bring dullness and superficiality. How? Through space - by getting in touch with reality. In that limitless field we learn to garner our very natural connection to qualities of stability, clarity and strength. Realization - we see our place in the whole thing, remembering that we are worthy, interconnected and innately good. Such insight shows us that we have the ability to live a life by design and by way of response (in thought, speech, behavior) that is wise, generous, understanding and compassionate. The breath of life becomes palpable and therefore workable.

Just as we are guaranteed to remember (even spontaneously without effort) we will forget. So we train in remaining open, upright and willing to return. In moments of struggle and deep disconnection we can wander back to the spark of life within us. There's a knowing at our core that, despite the messiness and disconnectedness of life, we are all hardwired for good. While some theories of evolution might point more to selfishness as a factor for survival, we can see the incompleteness of this view. Other studies illuminate the core of human nature by way of our positive emotions. We have evolved with those positive emotions, not in spite of them. Our goodness is real and can be seen. When faced with horrific truths of the world, Fred Rogers' mum famously said, "Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping." There are countless examples of humans working together by observing, caring, responding and compromising skillfully. I sleep more soundly knowing that science can echo the knowing of my heart, that the goodness factor and our collective emotional intelligence is on the rise.

All that said, it's a balance or interplay of good and bad, sukha and dukkha. Looking deeply into the heart of what we call our goodness, we see that it is made of non-goodness elements; our badness of non-badness elements. It takes courage to look at the whole truth of what reality has to offer; intimately present for what is, for ourselves and for another. Practice presents us with the space to choose that intimate view of reality. Relationships present us with that choice too. When was the last time that you had a real conversation with someone, in the true sense of the word? In either case, with self or another, it takes real courage to accommodate our impulse to withdraw and turn away (maybe even to devices, drugs, alcohol, etc) instead of turning toward ourselves and to each other.

It's a tender spot that we practice allowing the world to touch. It requires a quality of bravery to hold space for that tenderness. It requires trust - giving us the courage and incentive to pursue vulnerability in the first place. When experienced in a social context, this vulnerability-bravery can help us short-circuit cultural habits of distraction and doubt and create a new culture of nowness together. In 2017 I experienced mindfulness methods called "social meditation" or "interpersonal vipassana", while studying at Gampo Abbey. I learned directly that we can empower each other to be totally comfortable to be who we really are. We can be brave and on the spot, in the immediacy of reality together. This experience continues to shape so much of Heart's mission, vision and culture today.

Over the past couple of years, I have had many incredible life experiences that continue to open my eyes to the possibilities of our humanness. Most of these consist of authentic human connection, and the choice to develop true and meaningful relationships. While I can appear outgoing, I am no stranger to withdrawing, protecting or needing to navigate safe space to explore my own comfort zones and vulnerabilities. I am tenderly and compassionately pushing myself outside of my comfort zone and allowing vulnerability to present itself in my life, in my relationships, with sangha, in my personal practice... I am realizing that the moments of discomfort are well worth the gifts on the other side. I find that when I view society through the lens of my individual, more intimate, relationships, I can realize the importance of how I conduct myself in the world. I choose to respond ethically because I know the impact of my presence. In my humanness I choose what is real, respecting the is-ness of life so that I may manifest in a way that brings wellbeing to myself, to others and the planet.

Care to join me?

 

Most openly,

Meg Lucks | Shastri Konchok Dzeden Zangmo

Past Newsies:

May 2024: Vulnerability

April 2024: The Art of Mindfulness

March 2024: The Eightfold Path

February 2024: Enlightened Society

January 2024: This Meaningful Life

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December 2023: Bodhichitta

November 2023: Prajnaparamita2

October 2023: Prajnaparamita

September 2023: Om Mani Padme Hum

August 2023: Mahamrtyunjaya

July 2023: Gayatri

June 2023: Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu

May 2023: Om Santih, Santih, Santih

April 2023: Om Gam Ganapatye Namaha

March 2023: Om Purnam Adah, Purnam Idam

February 2023: Om Namah Shivaya

January 2023: Sat Nam

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December 2022: Self-love as Dharma

November 2022: Practice is the Antidote

October 2022: Happiness is the Path

September 2022: Taking Your Seat

August 2022: A Crowded Mind Leaves no Space for a Peaceful Heart

July 2022: Yoga is the Journey of the Self...

June 2022: Practice and All is Coming

May 2022: The Altruistic Intention

April 2022: Being Mudra

March 2022: Receptive Listening

February 2022: There is No Enlightenment Outside of Daily Life

January 2022: The Source of a True Smile is an Awakened Mind

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December 2021: The Practice of Touching the Earth

November 2021: Rejuvenation: Nourish Your Entire Being

October 2021: Contemplative Interbeing

September 2021: The Nobility of Silence

August 2021: Dissolve Your Fixation with Self

July 2021: Let's Linger

June 2021: I am in the Flow of the Universe

May 2021: Lighten Up

April 2021: We Travel the Path in Good Company

March 2021: Om Mani Padme HumM

February 2021: Embodied Dharma

January 2021: "Everything can be a 'that'; everything can be a 'this' " 

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December 2020: I Am a Sanctuary

November 2020: In the One is The All

October 2020: Ready, Set, Rest

September 2020: Attract Beauty Today, Create Tomorrow 

August 2020: Refuge in One and blogging by the sangha

July 2020: Awaken Your Voice 

June 2020: The Spirit of Sangha 

May 2020: Just as You Are 

April 2020: The Next Buddha is Sangha

March 2020: You and I Are Essentially Infinite and blogging bits by Heather Kolvenbach

February 2020: Mudita: Taking Delight in the Happiness of Others and blogging bits by Amy Griebenow

January 2020: I am 

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December 2019: Give the Gift of Presence 

November 2019: We are All Royalty by Roy Grant

October 2019: Rekindle the Heart 

September 2019: Where Your Intention Goes, Energy Flows 

August 2019: Come Home & Be Anywhere 

July 2019: Paradise is Now 

June 2019: Let Peace Be Your Superpower 

May 2019: Play is our Pathway to Possibility 

April 2019: Give Yourself Room to Bloom 

March 2019: Living Your Highest Truth 

February 2019: Out of Love, Our Path Can Lead us to Serve

January 2019: True Belonging is the Spiritual Practice of believing in and belonging to yourself...

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