The Vertical Axis
Tuesday, August 25, 2020
Eckhart Tolle, a well known meditation teacher, instructs about the deep, quiet, inner spaciousness that is within each one of us. The formless part of ourselves that is is pure vibration, pure sensation. It is the home of our wisdom, our essence. It is our deep inner knowing. In yoga we talk about the midline, a gold thread running through the centre of our body. We connect with that space in every pose. The idea is that the deeper you go in yourself, the quieter you get. Caroline Myss, a medical intuitive, author and International speaker, talks about the vertical and horizontal axis in our bodies. The horizontal axis is the “text” and the stories of our lives. “My kids… this job… your health…she said this.…I am mad about…..this pandemic….”. We all have a horizontal axis that is loud at times, quiet at others. The vertical axis is the deep centre, in us, where our values, wisdom, ethics, inner knowing lives. It is the home of our spirit, our soul. Caroline suggests that we need a deep connection to a strong vertical axis so that we can respond to the “text”, the stories, the horizontal axis with wisdom. Caroline suggests that we need to take the time on a regular basis to find the practices or rituals that connect us to the vertical axis and to keep it strong. Practices like yoga, meditation and prayer work for some. A retreat at a cottage works for others. I suspect gardening works for my husband. I recently spent 5 nights on a sea kayaking trip on Georgian Bay with a group of women for five nights. Within half a day of being on the bay, I remembered that the simplicity of camping and paddling and being outside 24 hours a day strengthens my spirit, my soul, my vertical axis. My whole system settles, relaxes and what is important and what I value most of all becomes crystal clear. Sitting out on a rock under the vast evening sky reminds me how I am part of the whole. Doing yoga with the sun rising reminds me how beauty inspires me. Having everything I need stuffed into the kayak reminds me that I don’t need a lot of things to be happy. Food always tastes better after a day of kayaking and swimming and I remember that I am happiest when I am active. They are simple lessons but important ones. We are all different and there are thousands of ways to fill your soul, you just need to know what works for you. As we head into the fall there are many unknowns about how the pandemic will affect us. We don’t know for certain how school will unfold, what will happen with our businesses and how our social lives will unfold. There is a lot of “text” for all of us. It is important that we each do the work that keeps our vertical axis strong. Do the things that strengthens your soul, and your spirit and that is not only going to help you, but will benefit everyone that you come in contact with. We will move forward and we will keep responding with wisdom, grace and compassion as our lives unfold. Our families, our community and the planet needs us to be strong!