Your Body of Light
A Day of Taoist Meditation for Emotional Balance and Spiritual Awareness
Ilkley Happiness Centre, 23 June 10-5.00
Led by Nick Hudis with Kalyani Ma Mukti
Empty yourself of everything
Let the mind rest at peace
The ten thousand things rise and fall while the self watches their return
They grow and flourish and return to the source.
Returning to the source is stillness, which is the way of nature.
The Way of nature is unchanging.
(Lao Tse: Tao Te Ching)
In these words Lao Tse the legendary father of Taoism describes the flavour of Taoist meditation. Taoism, the indigenous spirituality of China, is a beautiful mix of deep spirituality, philosophy, shamanic influences and practical life and health skills. The ultimate aim of Taoist practice is to “return to the source”: to reconnect with, embody and live from the deep unchanging core of our being. To put it another way, the Taoist seeks oneness with the Tao. But what is Tao? Tao is the infinite, unmanifest wholeness from which being and form arises. Tao is also the “way,” the natural unfolding of things as they are. Taoist practice is therefore about a deepening experience of openness, spontaneity, intimacy with ourselves and with life and attunement to the way of nature.
You do not have to be a Taoist to benefit from Taoist meditation. Who would not wish to let go of the conflicts, contradictions and tensions of life and relax into openness and spontaneity? The practices we will be working with in Your Body of Light are simple everyday tools for managing your emotional climate and your energy resources. For those who follow a spiritual path, they are also gateways to profound realisation.
I am always hearing people say “I’m no good at meditation”. For those of you who struggle sitting on a cushion counting breaths and trying to stay mindful, Taoist meditation will be a refreshing surprise. These are active meditations working with movement, breath, rhythm, sound and colour to engage the monkey mind rather than fight it. Taoism is the way of nature, so these practices draw on our natural abilities and our innate sense of pleasure and sensuality to lead us into deep awareness.
In Your Body of Light we will explore four Taoist meditation practices:
Ocean Breathing. A simple and beautiful moving meditation in which we attune our physical breath with the yin-yang pulsation of the vast ocean of qi or life breath that surrounds us. People who really believe they cannot meditate will be delighted how deep they can go with this practice.
Inner Smile Meditation. This meditation uses our innate ability to smile, to feel and respond to warmth and love in order to go deep into our heart. Through Inner smile we embrace our whole being with total self acceptance and experience the body-mind from a place of oneness and openness.
Healing Sounds. This active practice engages the different vibrational frequencies of each of the Chinese five elements (Water, Wood, Fire, Earth and Metal) , through sound, colour and movement. The aim is to release stuck emotional energy and awaken the creative power of the elements.
Zuowang. This meditation is usually translated as “sitting and forgetting” but I prefer to call it “sitting in openness and letting go”. That’s all there is to it really. there is no where to go, nothing to do, nothing to change, nothing to work on. Just sit and watch the “ten thousand things rise and fall”. I used to do this spontaneously as a child and was admonished for wasting time…. little did they know!
I really hope you will be inspired to join Kalyani and I for the Your Body of Light workshop. Please get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org or 07891579364 if you would like to book a place. your investment will be £70.
And two last things. First another quote from Lao Tse which beautifully expresses the simplicity and naturalness of Taoist meditation:
In the pursuit of learning, every day something is acquired
In the pursuit of Tao, every day something is let go of.
And last of all why the name Your Body of Light? Well that is a surprise and you will have to come to the workshop to find out.