Happy New Year.
It's a mysterious expression - "Happy New Year" is filled with hope and wishes of blessings in the year ahead, the optimism of gaining a fresh start on life. Though measures of time are largely human constructs and somewhat arbitrary, many people choose this time to make those oft-teased "new years resolutions" which display an extraordinary range of efforts to improve oneself through dieting, reading more, drinking less and so forth.
I want to resolve something together with you: let's NOT make any new years resolutions. Save one.
I invite you to resolve to radically accept yourself *exactly* as you are in this moment, with whatever imperfections you think you may have - the projects left undone, the messy closet, the extra (or too few) pounds on your bodily frame. Accept it all, with love. This is, in all its imperfect glory, our beautiful, human life.
Such radical self-acceptance contains within it a precious gift. It's the gift of lightening up, of letting go, and of allowing ourselves in that release to become empty.
Empty? Why would I want to become empty, you may be asking? What's the "gift" in that?
While traveling recently I came across an interview in the elegant magazine Cereal. It was a conversation with designer Kenya Hara who described his creative process as working to make each of his designs "empty," pointing the observer to the essence of what the object is: toothbrush, water bottle, soap dispenser, pen. "Emptiness is richer than fullness," he said. His words have lingered in my psyche ever since.
According to Kenya Hara, emptiness suggests a receptiveness, an openness to the world, which otherwise can be obscured by the "chatter" of our surroundings or the noisy projections of our own internal dialogue. By emptying ourselves, we become quiet. We listen more deeply to what surrounds us. We open to the timeless essence of things. There is, I believe, a deep freedom available to us in that, if we allow it.
So in this brave new year, I am inviting all of us to not resolve a thing, save for that of emptying ourselves - even of resolutions themselves. Let's listen together to the whisperings of 2017 and see where they might lead.
The timing of this maiden blog post reveals an irony not lost on me. It marks the beginning of a new adventure, coinciding with the emergence of this new year. 2017 is the year the CROCU/CoreMindfulness courses will once again be made available to the world: two in online formats, and one which will take place as a live retreat in September at our farmstead in Vermont. I hope you will join us for the journey.
May this new cycle of time, this new year, be all you wish it to be, in all its humanness and essential, imperfect beauty. May you know the fullness and freedom of emptiness...which opens to reveal the luminous core spirit within you.
Yours From The Core,