- Today’s questions: Can you feel the tenderness and gift of your yearning? Are you ready to hold it, gently, and present it to the world?
- Today's suggested practice: Day 20 of this month's practice, to prepare to receive it all.
- My practice: 6:30AM: 45 minutes: Yoga, then a series of mantra meditations, ending with Gayatri meditation…
- My vulnerability practice: Remember all the tenderness of the milonga, the many hearts and desires I felt, and allow my own to shine as my vulnerability, my beauty.
★ This fall: A series of conversations about men and divorce, what one men’s work leader has called “the second-most traumatic event we can go through.” As a subscriber to these chapters, there is no charge to these conversations. Please let me know if you or a friend are interested. In the meantime, see what’s coming up at sacredbodies.ca/events
Hans Peter Meyer
Tango. Love. Life. She is always here for me. But what anxieties will I torture myself with, to know this truth, in this body, in this dance with life?
I went to milonga last night, here in Vancouver. It was the first time in a very, very long time.
This morning I am remembering how that was as I listen to ”tango radio” on the internet. I am also remembering how every cab of the many, many cabs I climbed into in Buenos Aires (again, so many years ago) was filled with cabbies listening to tango music. It is a beautiful sound, this music of heartbreak and yearning. A beautiful music to dance to.
I am a dancer. Apparently since early days. Afraid in my teens, but always longing. To move. To move with a woman. To move with the great She, the divine feminine presence that flows through me and around me as life, beauty, love? Tal vez… perhaps.
I went to milonga last night. I had “all the feelings.” Joy. Wonder. Awe. But most of all, the feeling of anxious anticipation: studying the room, surveying the dancers, wondering: Who do I desire to dance with? Who are these bodies? How do they wish to move, to be moved? What do they yearn for?
Yoga is —or can be, if approached with reverence and seriousness— nervous system training. It is a practicing of paying attention. Noticing the default and habituated settings of this body. Noticing the choices I am making. To open. To close. To react. To, perhaps, just notice this time, and only then to respond. I aspire to this appreciation of the moment of my choosing.
Tango too: a nervous system training, when I approach it with reverence and seriousness. A practice to notice. A practice to deepen my awareness of Her —this person I hold in my arms, close to my heart or with a pregnant space between our hearts: Who are they? Man or —more likely for me, but not always— woman, what is the electricity that flows between us as we stand? Or is there none? Because that too is something to experience, the absence of the charge. And what to do with that?
And, either way, what then? How to begin this dance? Anxious. Afraid. I feel it in their body, and my own. But this I know: Here —and absolutely here and now!— there is no room for doubt or equivocation. Here in this moment as the music moves me there is only the crossing of the threshold into leadership, the very step (or stillness, because that too is a decision and a crossing over…) towards the threshold is itself an assertion of leadership.
And then, what?
I went to milonga last night and felt the anxiety and the isolation and loneliness (and, of course, the freedom!), to be the new face in the familiar crowd. Every first embrace a welcoming, however tentative. If nothing else, the milonga can be experienced as the heart finding itself in those warm, welcoming first embraces of the dance, before any step has been taken. Savour these, I have to remind myself —and I remind you, my students: savour the first embraces, so full of hope and possibility, so willingly inviting intimacy and vulnerability. Enjoy! And, revere. You and I will never experience that particular yearning embodied again. Deeper things, perhaps. More guarded things, definitely. Tended carefully, they may blossom into that unimaginable knowing and unknowing that I so often go on about. So, enjoy! Devote yourself to this opening, and become a cultivator (and cultivar!) of opening. Here the promise of tango —and life, and especially of love— is born.
What do I remember after all of these years of dancing and all these years of this apprenticeship to love? At least this: Our hearts all yearn to be held. And this: I have the capacity to hold Her heart, the heart of life and love (and yes, tango too, perhaps). I may —and often do! And especially last night in milonga!— stumble as I step forward with this heart of mine, this heart of hers, the heart of my beloved. But for the moment, and for the moment after dancing through the stumbling, I am, as one of my teachers urged us to become, “He who must be trusted.” Not as a command, but as a feeling, that surrender is the only desirable response to this masculine presence. A trustworthiness embodied. So trustworthy that She —as life, as love, as the woman in my arms, and especially as the beloved of my heart—feels only the surrender and the blossoming.
Last night I went to milonga. It wasn’t all pretty, or deep (but on the other hand, perhaps it was all deep, but not always in the way I seek or prefer depth!— another lesson to remember!). It was a reminder, of many things. Perhaps this most all, and again: every heart yearns to be held, safe against the loneliness of the night, the blinding brightness of the day, the aching to be seen, know, allowed to be who we are.
To remember this, and to trust myself as he who must be trusted. He whose awareness and confidence allows Her to give me everything. Yes, and tenderly.
I am this strong: I can hold these tenderest of blessings.
🌀"If it happens to you, it happens through you." The light of existence passes through you, then out into the surrounding space, and back to your perception.
Our prayer is that you are paying close attention. (Guru Singh and Guruperkarma Kaur)
🌀I’m beginning to trust “without expectations.” (My beloved, my Oracle & Siren)
🌀The Conscious Warrior cultivates impeccability in his presence, his environment, his way of being, and his way in the world. (John Wineland, Precept 2)
TODAY'S SUGGESTED PRACTICE
Day 20 of this month's practice:
Please read through first, then ...
- Today, set two alarms, one for the early part of your day, one for mid-late afternoon when you may be feeling low energy.
- When the alarm sounds, wherever and however you are, take less than three minutes to do this short practice:
- Stand or sit, with a beautiful and straight spine, feeling your feet or your sit bones heavy and connected to the earth;
- Close your eyes;
- Inhale deeply into your belly, letting it become soft and round;
- Exhale by gently and slowly, much more slowly than your inhale, pressing your navel to your spine;
Repeat three times, letting the front of your body become softer and more open to receive as your shoulders relax and your spine remains firm.
When you’re done, stand for another minute and breathe gently, slowly filling and emptying your belly. Here, as you breathe into your fullness, ask yourself, Can I feel the tenderness and gift of my yearning? Am I ready to hold it, gently, and present it to the world?
Notice if your body-mind feels somehow changed. And whether you notice a change or not, be content with yourself, exactly as you are in this moment.
Continue with your day until the next alarm sounds, and repeat.