Staying rooted in the memory and feeling of the specific situation, we respond to six prompts to capture our stressful thoughts in short, simple sentences.
1. We identify the emotion we feel, with whom, and why. For example, "I am angry with Paul because he lied to me."
2. We identify how we want the person to change and what we want them to do. For example, "I want Paul to see that he is wrong. I want him to stop lying to me."
3. We write down our advice for the person. For example, "Paul shouldn't frighten me with his behavior. He should take a deep breath."
4. We write down what we need in order to feel better about the situation. For example, "I need Paul to stop talking over me. I need him to listen."
5. We list our complaints about the person or the situation. For example, "Paul is a liar, arrogant, loud, dishonest, and unaware."
6. We write down what it is about the person or situation that we don't ever want to experience again. For example, "I don't ever want Paul to lie to me again. I don't ever want to be disrespected again."
As we express our feelings in writing, we should allow ourselves to be as petty, judgemental, or childish as we may feel without censorship; this is our opportunity to discover our true emotions from that moment.
Turn It Around:
Finally, we practice turning around each of our statements to find multiple opposing statements and consider whether they may be as true as or truer than our original thoughts. A statement often can be turned around to the self, the other, the opposite, and written in contrasting language. Each statement will be different--some have one or two opposites, some have four or more--don't force any that don't make sense. Sometimes to find a good turnaround, we can replace the subject with "my thinking." For example instead of, "My body should be more flexible," we can say, "My thinking should be more flexible." For turnarounds to the sixth prompt about what we never want to experience again, turnarounds can begin with "I welcome..." or "I look forward to..."
For the above example, "Paul lied to me," we may find the following four turnarounds, "I lied to me. I lied to Paul. Paul didn't lie to me. Paul told me the truth." As we consider the truth and validity of the opposing statements, we should stretch ourselves to identify any examples or evidence that could support them. In this example we can explore how the deception was really our own wanting to believe, our own self-deception. We can explore how clear and honest we were with Paul in the situation. We can explore Paul's understanding and intentions, and his own truth in his lived experience.
The Work of Byron Katie binds Satya, Santosha, Svadhyaya, and Brahmacharya as we examine the validity of our beliefs and look for other possibilities (Satya), we exercise mental inversions and create space for opposing viewpoints (Santosha), we recognize the possible differences and disparities between our interpretation of an event and how it may have been experienced by another (Svadhyaya), and we engage with The Work as an active practice in our aim to approach unity consciousness (Brahmacharya.) While The Work is challenging, this contemplative yoga bears beautiful fruits, and I encourage you to apply the practice once or twice a week, and to notice how your beliefs and experiences transform and evolve. Start with whatever experience is most prominent in your awareness, whatever has you most upset in this moment, whatever is most energetically charged, as there you will find the most helpful results. As we continue with the practice and work through different memories and situations, we may then begin to apply the practice to specific Anti-Racism work, checking in with our beliefs about what we're hearing in the news and how we interpret "the facts" of any given situation.
Enjoy the practice, and please let me know how it goes. Namaste ~ Teagan
Richard Claxton Gregory
October 12, 1932
in St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.
August 19, 2017 (aged 84) in Washington, D.C., U.S.
Lillian Smith (m. 1959)
Active Years of Activism
Real & Current WIkipedia Activism ABstract
Richard Claxton Gregory (October 12, 1932 – August 19, 2017) was an American comedian, civil rights and vegetarian activist, and conspiracy theorist. He spent the last decade of his life speaking regularly about numerous conspiracy theories. His writings were best sellers. Gregory became popular among the African-American communities in the southern United States with his "no-holds-barred" sets, poking fun at the bigotry and racism in the United States. In 1961 he became a staple in the comedy clubs, even appearing on television, and officially releasing comedy record albums.
Gregory was at the forefront of political activism in the 1960s, when he protested the Vietnam War and racial injustice. He was arrested multiple times and went on many hunger strikes. He later became a speaker and author, primarily promoting spirituality.
Gregory died of heart failure at a Washington, D.C., hospital at age 84 in August 2017.
For the Canadian football player, see Dick Gregory (Canadian football).
Virtual YogA Assignment
& Contemplative Practice
LISTEN TO DICK GREGORY'S SPEECH
AT THE START OF THE ABOVE VIDEO
AND CONSIDER THE LOGIC
AROUND WHAT IS SAID.
AS YOU TAKE IN
THE REST OF THIS
BOB MARLEY & THE WAILERS
AT HARVARD STADIUM
IN BOSTON, MA, USA,
DESIGN YOUR OWN
VIRTUAL ACTIVISM PLAYING CARD
WITH BIOGRAPHICAL STATS,
A VISUAL REPRESENTATION,
NOTABLE WORKS & ROLES,
& / OR
IMAGINE YOUR OWN
WIKIPEDIA ACTIVISM ABSTRACT
DRAW A PICTURE
OF YOUR OWN LI-GER & DESCRIBE
WHAT IT'S KNOWN FOR,
AND SPECIAL SKILLS & POWERS
(SEE NAPOLEON DYNAMITE
CONSIDER, WHAT HAS BEEN MISSING
FROM HOW DICK GREGORY
CONSIDER, WHY DOES WIKIPEDIA
DOCUMENTS BOB MARLEY'S
WITHOUT IDENTIFYING HIM
AS AN ACTIVIST?
NAMASTE ~ TEAGAN
Special Skills & Powers:
Skills as a Singer, Songwriter, and Musician,
with the power to unify people across race, religion, and generation, around music and messages of peace, Jah, unity, and one love.
A VIRTUAL ACTIVISM PLAYING CARD
& WIKIPEDIA ACTIVISM ABSTRACT
Created for Bob Marley
[OR, My thought about What it MIGHT look like
iF wikipedia Were to Frame Bob Marley
MORE as an activist than a musician]
Virtual activism Playing Card
Robert Nesta Marley
6 February 1945
Nine Mile, Saint Ann Parish, British Jamaica
11 May 1981 (aged 36)
Miami, Florida, U.S.
Rita Anderson (m. after 1966)
Cindy Breakspeare (1977–1978)
Active Years of Activism
Notable Works and Roles
An IMagined Wikipedia Activism Abstract
Internationally, Marley's message continues to reverberate among various indigenous communities. For instance, the Australian Aboriginal people continue to burn a sacred flame to honour his memory in Sydney's Victoria Park, while members of the Native American Hopi and Havasupai tribes revere his work.:5 There are also many tributes to Bob Marley throughout India, including restaurants, hotels, and cultural festivals.
Marley evolved into a global symbol, which has been endlessly merchandised through a variety of mediums. In light of this, author Dave Thompson in his book Reggae and Caribbean Music, laments what he perceives to be the commercialised pacification of Marley's more militant edge, stating:
"Bob Marley ranks among both the most popular and the most misunderstood figures in modern culture ... That the machine has utterly emasculated Marley is beyond doubt. Gone from the public record is the ghetto kid who dreamed of Che Guevara and the Black Panthers, and pinned their posters up in the Wailers Soul Shack record store; who believed in freedom; and the fighting which it necessitated, and dressed the part on an early album sleeve; whose heroes were James Brown and Muhammad Ali; whose God was Ras Tafari and whose sacrament was marijuana. Instead, the Bob Marley who surveys his kingdom today is smiling benevolence, a shining sun, a waving palm tree, and a string of hits which tumble out of polite radio like candy from a gumball machine. Of course it has assured his immortality. But it has also demeaned him beyond recognition. Bob Marley was worth far more."
Several films pour spotlights on Marley and his message. For instance, a feature-length documentary about his life, Rebel Music, won various awards at the Grammys. With contributions from Rita, The Wailers, and Marley's lovers and children, it also tells much of the story in his own words. The film, Marley, was released on 20 April 2012. In 2011, ex-girlfriend and filmmaker Esther Anderson, along with Gian Godoy, made the documentary Bob Marley: The Making of a Legend, which premiered at the Edinburgh International Film Festival. In October 2015, Jamaican author Marlon James' novel A Brief History of Seven Killings, a fictional account of the attempted assassination of Marley, won the 2015 Man Booker Prize at a ceremony in London. In February 2020, the musical Get Up Stand Up!, the Bob Marley Story was announced by writer Lee Hall and director Dominic Cooke, starring Arinzé Kene as Bob Marley. It will open at London's Lyric Theatre in February 2021.
BOB MARLEY'S SONG "WAR" REIMAGINED AS "ROAR"
That until there no longer first class and second class citizens of any nation, until the color of a man's skin is of no more significance than the color of his eyes, Me say "ROAR!"
That until the basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all without regard to race, dis a "ROAR!"
That until that day the dream of lasting peace, world citizenship, rule of international morality will remain in but a fleeting illusion to be pursued, but never attained, now everywhere is "ROAR!" "ROAR!"
And until the ignoble and unhappy regimes that hold our brothers in Angola, in Mozambique, South Africa, Sub-human bondage have been toppled, utterly destroyed, well, everywhere is "ROAR!" Me say "ROAR!"
"ROAR!" in the east. "ROAR!" in the west. "ROAR!" up north. "ROAR!" down south. "ROAR!" "ROAR!" Rumors of "ROAR!"
And until that day, the African continent will not know peace, we Africans will fight we find it necessary and we know we shall win as we are confident in the victory of good over evil. Good over evil, yeah, good over evil. Good over evil, yeah, good over evil.
yoga & antiracism series, PART 1 OF 8
I’d like to invite you to join me in a virtual Yoga class beginning to explore how Yoga and Social Justice intersect. As in any Yoga class, I invite you to stay connected with the breath and to commit to complete the class, meaning read to the end of this post and engage with each step whether or not you complete each suggestion. This virtual Yoga Class requires internet access and a journal or place to express your thoughts. The 8 steps are outlined below. Take each step in your own time. I will be posting to Facebook and Instagram prompts, information, and inspiration as I move through this practice myself. You can read my own reflections from the practice described here in my Statement of Personal Commitment. Thank you for joining me in practice. May this practice serve our highest good and the highest good of all beings. Namaste. ~ Teagan
Visit Michelle Johnson’s website. Read her bio and about the workshops and teacher training she offers. Read a description and reviews of her book: Skill in Action: Radicalizing Your Yoga Practice to Create a Just World. Consider joining her mailing list or following her social media account. Consider which accounts you are following currently on social media. What percentage of the accounts that you follow belong to people who look like you, or have the same race or culture as you? What percentage of the accounts that you follow belong to those with a different race or culture? What value is there in actively seeking out diverse voices and perspectives?
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu. May all beings everywhere be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life contribute in some way to that happiness and to that freedom for all. Namaste.
Yoga & Anti-Racism Series
Part 1: How Yoga & Social Justice Intersect: A Contemplative Practice
..... Part 1.1 A Personal Commitment to Social Justice Practice
Part 2: Setting the Stage for Contemplative Practice: A Personal Reflection
Part 3: Social Justice & The Purpose of Yoga: Invoking Satya & Santosha
Part 4: Karma Yoga & The Paradox of All-One: Invoking Brahmacharya & Svadhyaya
..... Part 4.1 The Work of Byron Katie: Bonding Brahmacharya & Svadhyaya with Satya & Santosha
Part 5: Dharma, Divisiveness & Sustaining Activism: Invoking Aparigraha & Tapas
..... Part 5.1 Bonding Aparigraha & Tapas with Brahmacharya & Svadhyaya
Part 6: Appropriation & Holding Space: Invoking Asteya & Saucha
..... Part 6.1 Integrity Review
Part 7: Surrender to Activism: Invoking Ahimsa & Ishwara Pranidhana
Part 8: The Yamas & Niyamas Activism Model
What’s the first obvious challenge to a home practice? Our consensus today: dogs. If you’re in Downward-Facing Dog, dogs want to play. Even if you’re shut away in your room, you’ll soon be drawn out but their little noses bopping up against the door. Dogs are the first challenge to home practice. And if it’s not dogs, maybe it’s kids, maybe it’s the ringing phone, maybe it’s one of a million other things that calls for your attention, pulling you away from your mat.
For example, if you want to form a new habit like making your bed each morning, the idea of discipline might comprise a firm decision of absolute follow-through. It’s all or nothing. You make the decision that you will form this new habit. You commit. Then every morning first thing upon waking, you make your bed. You make your bed no matter how tired or lazy you feel, no matter how late you are and rushed to get out the door, no matter if your only plan for the day is to go for a stroll, have a bite, and then get right back in bed. This form of discipline equates success with strict consistency, getting it done no matter what. It’s extremely potent; it can be highly effective.
Sometimes this discipline framework may be applied to making shifts around diet. If our motivation is clear and pressing enough, like in the case of confronting a severe health issue, then this all-or-nothing approach to revolutionize our diet may be just the ticket. However, if we’re not quite so intensely compelled to make the shifts, maybe we have only a general sense that we could make some changes to improve our health or minimize our environmental impact, then the all-or-nothing approach could be a setup for failure. If you stray too far or too often from your initial decision, all or nothing may easily default to the latter; when it’s all or nothing, nothing is the choice of least resistance. In this sort of situation, we might be more successful setting up for ourselves a specific proportional rule. For instance, as long as we follow our new diet guidelines 80% of the time, then we are being disciplined enough to make lasting change.
So how about when it comes to developing a home practice? Whether you commit, all or nothing, to a firm decision that each day upon waking you will be on your yoga mat without fail, or whether you’re less strict and decide that as long as you’re fitting practice into your schedule once or twice a week you’re good, either of these strategies can build discipline to show up on our mats with consistency. Getting to the mat is at least half the battle, but then how do we stay disciplined once we’re there?
What do we do when we start to practice and inevitably the time comes, the thought arises, we’d rather be doing something else? We’d rather be back in bed, or we’d rather be getting ahead of tasks for the day, or whatever is calling to us, maybe we just don’t feel up to it. Inevitably there will be times when we want to call it quits, when we won’t feel compelled to move through a complete practice. What do you do at these times? All or nothing, you’re finishing practice no matter what? Do you reflect on how consistent you’ve been and weigh out whether you’re meeting your proportional target? When we’re in our practice it’s not going to serve us to have to stop and weigh choices every time we are feeling challenged, so what can we do?
For myself, whether I’m flowing through Ashtanga practice, or whether I’m sitting down for meditation in stillness, I use the three-strike rule. I begin my practice, and the first time I feel like I want to stop, that’s what tells me the practice has begun. Everything before the first time I want to call it quits was the warm-up, and now I know that I’m in my practice and I keep with it. It’s interesting to notice when the first strike happens--it may be when I’m just getting going, it may be when I’m already most of the way through. On an amazing day, that first strike may not come at all. So I continue. If again the thought arises, “I’d really rather stop.” That’s strike two--that’s what tells me that I’m in the heart of my practice. I take note, because right here is where my work is. This is it. My awareness intensifies, I realign my form, and I keep going. Sometimes there’s a strike two, sometimes there’s not; it can be telling to track the patterns. Most of the time I will complete my practice with two strikes or less, but sometimes there’s a strike three, when again I think, “I’m really not feeling this today.” Three strikes and I’m out. When for a third time I feel like it’s not in me today, that’s my cue to listen. That’s when I know today I’m better served taking rest.
It’s important to know when to call it quits. It’s important to know when we are better served taking a rest. Our practice needs to serve us, and it’s important we develop awareness around our limits. For me the three strike rule has proven invaluable in practice and beyond. It can be applied with interpersonal relationships. How do we know when there’s value working things through, when moving through the challenge serves our growth and development? How do we know when it’s time to part ways? It can be applied to our goals, like working toward a degree or certification. How do we know when we’re facing common hurdles and the difficulty is an important part of the training process? How do we know when it’s time to accept that this path may not be for us, and our true dharma is waiting as soon as we’re ready to let this one go? And if we do hit three strikes, does that mean the practice is not for me? Or does that mean, not today, but you can be sure I’ll be back again tomorrow to give it another shot? It’s not an easy process, and three strikes may be an oversimplification, but then, maybe it holds true. What do you think? I’d love to hear your input. ~ Teagan
May this practice serve our highest health and wellbeing. May we be of service to all beings. Namaste.
For students new to this model, you are encouraged to interact openly, authentically, thoughtfully, and freely in the community forum spaces [i.e. the blog comments section, instagram comments, and facebook comments and within any intentional group containers.] Please discuss, debate, critique, play Devil's Advocate & God's Messiah, and monitor one another for the benefit of all.
Please honor & respect private channels. Please reserve emails & direct messages for teachers' professional colleagues and personal support systems. Be considerate of those propelled into spotlights; protect their sacred space containers, and allow their work to breath.
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