Saturday, March 14, 2015

The ever provocative path of intimacy yoga



In close relationships there may always be ruptures which arise in the field of lovers and friends. For when we enter into the mandala of vulnerability with another, each and every undigested emotion, feeling, and sensation will be there to greet us at the gates, yearning to be met, awaiting our alive presence, and longing for metabolization in our ripe bodies, hearts, and nervous systems. Once inside, the call of the beloved arrives in a thundering silence: come closer. Undress. And come closer. Set aside the clothing of the conceptual and let us meet here in the burning here and now. 

Along the provocative path of intimacy yoga, it may appear as if our friend is doing something *to* us, but often all they're really doing is just being themselves. Yet somehow this is enough to unleash an avalanche of rage, fear, feelings of abandonment and dependency, a tidal wave of unresolved attachment, and an urgent, desperate longing to be seen as we are. In the dance with the beloved, the bad news is that there is absolutely nowhere to hide. Ironically, this is the good news as well.

Without warning, we find ourselves back in that very familiar place where it's... just... not... safe. We long for secure ground and reference point from which we can organize our lives, but the beloved loves us too much to offer this. He or she will remain close, open, and empathic – but will never protect us from the unfolding of our own hearts. 

As the very vivid display continues to be illuminated, the superego remains nearby, eagerly ready to remind us: these sorts of feelings aren't very 'spiritual,' are they? Really, anger? Jealousy? Dependency? Terror? Attachment? I thought you had 'transcended' all this? What about your 'awakening?' You were enlightened, in bliss, in such peace and sooooo in love when you were on your own… weren’t you? You were so incredibly safe then. Perhaps this isn't for you after all.

In the wake of these inevitable ruptures – which are none other than the beloved's wild activity in disguise – love has appeared, yet again, as the ultimate curative and repair, bursting through the cracks in your heart, erupting out of your cellular tissue, and emerging in full force out of the strands of your DNA. You are being reminded of the actual role of the beloved in your life – creativity, destruction, and the rewiring the entire known world. Each rupture that appears comes pleading with you to behold the portal it is opening inside you: Come closer. Undress. And come closer. Set aside the clothing of the conceptual and let us meet here in the burning here and now. Though it may not always 'feel' safe, you are always safe. You are always, already safe. 

An invitation has arrived, but it has not come from any human source; it has fallen out of the stars and emerged up out of the gooey muddy earth. The beloved is at it again, using whatever form he must, to find you, to unclothe you, and to reveal the majesty and splendor that you are. She will never, ever stop looking for you, using whatever skillful means she must to reach you and reveal to you just how loved you truly are. 

Please don’t miss this opportunity. But if you do, don’t worry, love will come again, and again, and again, until your heart has turned to dust. As always, the greatest gift you can give yourself and others on the excruciating path of intimacy yoga is an unrelenting kindness. This path will ask everything of you – and even much more – yet comes bearing fruit from the unseen. In this way, your vulnerability is the doorway into aliveness. Unlock the door with kindness.


Art by my friend Alice Mason

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