For the Love of Practice, A Big Mess + The Embodiment Lab is Open Today!

A note from Carl: 

Hello friends!

I wanted to begin this morning with this piece from Fred Lamotte, who is such a beautiful embodiment of a contemporary mystic poet. This poem has been rocking my world all week:
“May all beings be happy, and know the cause of happiness.”
~Sutra on the Four Immeasurables

What is the cause of happiness? What is the cause of suffering?

My life is a mess. I believe I must strive for a state called “everything is OK.” This is suffering.

My life is a mess, and it’s OK, because a mess is all there is. This is the end of suffering.

From a mess I came. To a mess I will return. The world is a mess. The cosmos is a hot mess, cooling down. Because a mess is all there is, it is incomparably pure.

We were angels. We longed to be born in this mess.
Why? Because only when we collapse into unconditional vulnerability is love possible.

Now be a mess, and be happy.”

-Fred Lamotte (from his FB post)

 

I think Now be a mess, and be happy is one of the more potent, practical instructions I’ve received.

We are surely in a big, beautiful, urgent, hot mess in this world. I remember when we had our Embodiment Matters Podcast conversation with our friend, Diane Hamilton, we were reflecting on these times and she said, There has never been a time when our practices and intentions were more important.” Yes. I agree.

I am so damn grateful for practice in my life.

Practice is a passion that Erin and I have shared from our very first conversation 24 years ago standing next to the coffee roaster at Oasis Cafe here in Salt Lake, when we realized how lit up we both were by our practices and that we were both practicing meditation in the same Tibetan Buddhist lineage, both practicing tai chi and yoga, both practicing writing. Practice was woven into the fabric of our years of friendship, then our courting years (we did some good flirting through practice), and now practice continues to be an essential ingredient of our marriage, our parenting, our work, and our lifestyle.

When it comes to practice, it feels similar to the saying around the best timing for planting a tree: The best time to do it is twenty years ago, and the second-best time is right now.”  

We are thrilled to be opening registration this week for our online Embodiment Lab which begins October 1st.

One of the primary motivators for this lab, which we have been envisioning for years, is to support people in practice –  in growing a practice or deepening a practice –  and to have the opportunity through this interconnected web, to practice together.

The first theme we will be exploring is “Inner Authority, Bodily Sovereignty, and Your Inner Teacher.”

You can read more about the lab below, and I invite you to watch Erin’s video describing our vision. We are so excited to open the doors today!

Please feel free to pass it along to anyone who might be interested or share the link on social media. It will be excellent! We look forward to pouring our passion for embodied practice into every month of the lab. We can hardly wait to begin. We hope you’ll consider joining us.

For our local community, there is still room left in Erin’s powerful in-person fall course: The Great Turning: Introducing Evolutionary Embodiment. Read more about that below too.

Friends, we are thrilled to share an invitation for you to join us in the Embodiment Lab!

For years we’ve been teaching this incredible, life-changing work in beautiful studios in Salt Lake City, Utah.

We usually teach to two dozen people (at the most) at a time. While we love the intimacy of that size for a live gathering, and while we utterly cherish our local live community, we’ve realized that in a sense the room has become too small. Many many more than 2 dozen people at a time really need this work.

So we’ve created an online learning lab where you can join us in this life-giving education from anywhere in the world – and all at your own convenience.

Can we get a WOOOOOHOOOOOO!?!?!

JOIN US TODAY

Erin made a little video to tell you about it.

By enrolling in this course, you’ll enjoy:

  • Four unique 30 minute-long instructional course videos plus an audio-only version of the lesson. (We intend to provide transcripts for each lesson as well… there will likely be a week turnaround time from video release until the transcript is posted.) Each lesson will contain a talk, a guided practice, and invitations to work/play/explore on your own. The first lesson is released on the 1st of the month, then weekly thereafter. You can access them at any time – they are prerecorded and posted just for you.

 

  • Four unique and accessible Embodied Movement Lessons provided as downloadable or streamable audio recordings.

 

  • Two live 60-minute group conferences via Zoom with Erin & Carl. (Recordings will be available if you miss the live calls, and you’re most welcome to send your questions in via email.) Wednesday, October 30 at 6pm Mountain & Sunday, October 20th at 9am mountain. Calculate your time zone here.

 

  • A wealth of additional resources including:
      • movement quickies,
      • amazing articles,
      • inspirations,
      • gorgeous poetry,
      • guided meditations,
      • bonus somatic practices,
      • bonus short videos,
      • experiential anatomy teachings,
      • embodied mindfulness practices,
      • and potent embodied inquiries.
      • Oh, it’s going to be so rrrrrich.
  • Optional opportunities to engage with other learners in the private Embodiment Lab online conversations. One of our great blessings is the incredible communities who gather around this work. You will meet some truly incredible, wise, kind, real, and authentic people who share so much wisdom. Conversations will happen inside the online classroom, so you don’t even need to get on social media if that’s not your jam. (Though if it is, join us in our new Facebook Group, Embodiment Matters!)

 

 

  • Invitations and reflections to help you step off the self-improvement treadmill. This work is not about fixing yourself. It’s more about freeing yourself and becoming yourself. As Paul Hawken says, “You are brilliant and Earth is hiring!” Sense how your own embodied learning can help bring forth the best not just in you, but in this world. When we contextualize our learning beyond just ourselves, we find so much meaning, energy, and inspiration.

 

  • You’ll have ongoing access to all the course materials via our easy to use online platform on Ruzuku. You may also download all the lessons to your own device.

 

 

  • For us, it’s a given, but we’ll make it explicit: We promise to treat you with the utmost respect and kindness.  We’ll never be bossy or shaming. You’re a grown-ass adult after all, so how you use the practices is up to you. We’re honored to share potent, gentle, invitational guidance to support you as you reclaim your birthright: your own incarnation and your own organic learning process. We do our best to make it as down to earth, fun, engaging, and beauty-filled as possible.

Cost is only $50 USD for each month of the Embodiment Lab!

While the price will change in the future, you will have access to as many future months as you like at the monthly price at which you first signed up for the Lab. So if you join us now,  your cost will continue to be just $50 a month to participate in the monthly courses. We’re starting with the price super low to encourage you to jump in and join us because it’s going to be sooooooo excellent and we really hope to see you there!

You can stay with us in the lab over months or years or you can also opt to cancel at any time. We’re creating this vibrant learning space so we can share so much of what we love about embodied learning and practices and perspectives that we wish everyone had access to. We’ve got at least 5 years worth of materials at the ready. So let’s get started!!!!

We also have 3 scholarship spots we’ll be donating per month:

Please contact us if you’re interested in the work yet unable to afford the $50 cost without hardship. Once you contact us, we’ll add you to the list of potential scholarship recipients for that month. Please include in your email how you think this course will be of benefit in your life and anything you’d like to say about why the cost is a hardship at this time. We’ll be delighted to choose 3 recipients each month to join us for that edition of the Embodiment Lab at a pay-what-you-can rate.

If you would like to assist us in keeping this work accessible or if you have been gifted financial assistance previously and now wish to extend this generosity to others, please contact us to make a donation to our scholarship fund.

 

You may also contact us if you’d like to gift membership to the Embodiment Lab to someone you love. You may gift any number of months you’d like!

 

OF COURSE, THE EXPLORATION OF INNER AUTHORITY, BODILY SOVEREIGNTY, AND YOUR INNER TEACHER IS WHERE WE MUST BEGIN THE EMBODIMENT LAB ADVENTURE BECAUSE THIS WAY OF LEARNING IS FOUNDATIONAL FOR EVERYTHING ELSE. IT CAN UTTERLY CHANGE HOW YOU INTERACT WITH EVERY OTHER SITUATION IN YOUR LIFE IN SUCH POTENT AND HEALING WAYS.

This perspective invites us to hold a kind of paradox:

How do we open to inspiration, blessings, feedback, guidance, new possibilities from teachers, situations, pain, pleasure, our real lives – while at the same time, not surrendering our own capacity to sense and live from our inner compass, our bullshit detector, our non-verbal truth resonators, our body’s continuous and ongoing feedback of so many kinds??

How can we be an adult, autonomous learner, tuned to our own inner compass, in any situation?

Is some old message you received from who-knows-where influencing the way you’re walking, the way you’re holding your legs when you sit, the way you’re exhausting yourself by sucking in your belly or pushing yourself too hard?

Is there some old voice in your body-mind holding you back from your truer, more authentic, more free life?

Might it be nice to be free of that old shit?

I mean, RIGHT??!!

We work with this at such a profound, deep level when we include movement, embodiment, somatic habits and our physical way of being our self and doing our life, and not just our thoughts and concepts. Our movement is who and how we are at a level that’s deeper than language.  It’s deep. It’s potent. And it’s so worth exploring.

A powerful pointing from Moshe Feldenkrais is this:

“The mature human being is one who has re-appropriated inner authority.”

In fact, a central intention of the Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement lessons is to support people in doing just that – removing outer authority from our inner lives. This is deep and infinitely rewarding work. And the improvement of aches and pains happens to be a wonderful side effect.

It can be so easy to simply accept the perspective of someone deemed an authority: a doctor, a teacher, an internet article, a self-proclaimed expert on ___, or fill in your own blank. We often take this at face value and honor it over and above the truth of our own direct, bodily experience, our own unique way of looking at and feeling our lives.

As Parker Palmer says:

“Our deepest calling is to grow into our own authentic self-hood, whether or not it conforms to some image of who we ought to be. As we do so, we will not only find the joy that every human being seeks–we will also find our path of authentic service in the world.”

Let’s explore embodying Inner Authority, Bodily Sovereignty, and Your Inner Teacher!

We hope you’ll consider joining us in October in the Embodiment Lab!

Wishing you an unshakable connection with your own inner guidance,

Carl & Erin

 

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Erin

By training and profession, I am a somatic educator. Over the past 25+ years I have trained in and taught modern dance, tai chi, Indian and Tibetan yoga, yoga therapy (specializing in back pain). I completed a 4-year professional Feldenkrais training in 2007 and a 3-year Embodied Life training in 2014. I also study and work with somatic meditation and the profound practice of embodied inner listening known as Focusing.