Considering the Duress of the Heatwave and Our Practice Outdoors . . .

Hi Dear Folks;  This summer there will be Mindfulness-Based Yoga sessions shared in local parks on Monday evenings as well as some Sunday morning Mindfulness-Based Contemplative practices also in local parks.

The past week there has been unusual heat for such sessions though we have met and shared practice.  There was no air-conditioning or thermostats to adjust.  We simply made space and were able to offer an attentive, open presence and navigated our way with interest and curiosity.  Practice showed up without the burden of ‘too hot.’

Monday evening the 21st was our first session of the term and it was going to be above 90 degrees according to the forecast.  A number of folks chose to stay home which is of course prudent, especially with illness or physical difficulties.

However, as folks arrived and settled in beneath the Giant Sequoias and Lovely Big Leaf Maples and on the moist lawn of Bagely Park heat ceased to be a concern.  We just practiced each in our own appropriate and nourishing way.  All seemed to sense the value of this simple practice regardless of the concerns about heat that might have been before arriving.

Likewise, on Sunday morning we met for our Contemplative Session at Rood Bridge Park.  It was already very warm.  We sauntered to lovely Woodland Pond and the sweet, babbling creek that meanders in and out of the pond.  It was cool, moist and still for our sitting practice and kind, open conversation for the hour together.

Consider the possibility that meeting the duress of heat, cold, unlikely yoga postures, being still for long periods, and other challenges may evoke our natural, inherent capacities for meeting life’s challenges with robust vitality.  Not through pushing, controlling, ambition, or manipulating.  With openness, interest, patience, and curiosity.  We might be surprised.

Of course, of course there are extremes like this evening the 28th of June at well over 110 degrees where it is best for most of us to care for ourselves and stay inside.  Our session this evening is canceled appropriately.

Consider Dr. Rhonda Patrick’s scientific talk about the physiologic benefits of the duress of extreme heat and cold in Finnish saunas and cold water immersion.  Definite duress yet profound, well-documented and researched benefits: Use of Sauna and Cold to Increase Net Resilience, Mitochondrial Biogenesis, Mood and Longevity

I hope all this inspires and encourages you in the face of life’s challenges to be curious, interested, kind, and creative about how to meet what shows up.

Kindest Regards. —  Brant