a note from Erin:
Today, I’m writing from my perch on the couch where I’m keeping company with my sore throat and neck thick with swollen lymph nodes. I have strep! And thankfully, with the help of the first antibiotics I’ve taken since I was a teen, I’m on the mend and far less delirious and feverish than I was yesterday. :)
I want to share a paragraph with you that is lighting me up today, even through my current fog.
From Michael Meade’s excellent new book, The Genius Myth:
“The world is churning all around us, overheating with climate change and intensifying conflicts, but also awash with profound problems and rising seas. We live in critical times, amidst a worldwide shaking up and breaking down, surrounded by radical changes that severely affect both nature and culture. Given the size, scope, and complexity of the problems that currently threaten the world, there can be no single idea, specific political movement, or patented belief system that can save us. All kinds of ingenious solutions are needed; all types of inspiration, invention, and originality are now required. The idea of a genius self already present and trying to awaken within each of us may serve us better than more common notions of a heroic solution. The question becomes not whether or not you are a genius, but in what way does genius appear in you and how might it contribute to your own wellbeing and benefit the world around you.”
I love a certain framing of a question that takes the pressure off “finding your purpose” or even this sense of finding your genius. It’s simple.
What is calling me now?
Not in some big-deal grand scheme life-purpose way, but in this simple moment in your life. What inspiration is trying to emerge now? What is calling you? A strange notion that you want to keep bees? An emergent intention to host a dinner with friends to talk about racial bias, even though you’ve never done anything like that before? A knowing that you need to write that book you’ve always dreamed of writing? A wish to spend time mentoring kids? As Meade says, “All types of inspiration, invention, and originality are now required.” What are the whispers of inspiration calling you?
Months ago I was listening to a recorded conversation between writing teachers and champions of everyday creativity, Natalie Goldberg and Julia Cameron. I don’t even recall which one shared this line, but it moved me and I wrote it down. “What do you love with your whole heart? What brings you to your knees? In the intersection of those two questions, you will find your voice.” Maybe in addition to finding our voice, that’s a place our genius might emerge.
As I close this brief note today, I’m inspired to say with some passion – “Please don’t ignore those whispers of whatever inspiration is calling you now. The world needs your genius.” We really do.
(Please don’t imagine your genius has to be a fully-formed perfect thing. It’s often more like following those whispers through a dark hall, not knowing where it might lead, but trusting it all the same.) As described in this favorite poem from Octavio Paz.
“No one behind. No one ahead.
The path the ancients cleared has closed.
And the other path, everyone’s path,
easy and wide, goes nowhere.
I am alone and find my way.”
– Octavio Paz
We are alone, together, finding our way.
With love, and a deep bow to your genius,
1.) Registration is now open for our Fall Feldenkrais Immersion Retreat: Mindful Spontaneity,Oct 1-2. (See below)
2. Next week we will open public registration for our Fall Course “Embodied Presence and the Art of Befriending” which will be held on Monday nights at Vitalize. While we both love our winter classes, and teaching our own Women Embodied and Embodying The Masculine, we also deeply value the opportunity to teach together and have both men and women in the room. Details on the fall class will come next week. We’re opening registration to past participants soon, and to the public next Thursday. It usually fills quickly, so watch your inbox if you’d like to join!
3. Would you like to join Erin and Nan Seymour in Santa Fe for an amazing Embodied Life Retreat this fall? The theme is Walk In Beauty, and will feature brilliant Feldenkrais lessons to support walking with grace and pleasure, morning meditation (sitting and walking), powerful Embodied Life practices, and afternoon River Writing sessions, along with plenty of free time to stroll the gorgeous and inspiring streets of Santa Fe? Spaces are filling! We have a wonderful group of people gathering for this one-of-a-kind Embodied Life retreat in Santa Fe. The discounted room block at our boutique hotel in Santa Fe is available– so please sign up and book your room very soon! We’d love to have you join us. Men and women are warmly welcomed. It is going to be aaahhhmazing! We can hardly wait! We have TWO SPOTS left.
4. Erin is thrilled to offer a new workshop: REPLENISH! It will include an afternoon of Restorative Yoga and nourishing inspiration on Saturday, July 30th. I’ve been practicing and teaching Restorative Yoga for almost 2 decades, and I am more in love with it than ever. If you’d like to join me for a cool and refreshing summer afternoon of deep replenishment, read on below and sign up soon! I am so looking forward to this mini-retreat. Spaces are still available.
4. Please check our updated “Mark your calendar” section at the bottom of this email. We’ve got lots of great new stuff coming up!
5. You’re warmly welcome to join us for Thursday morning meditation from 7-8am at our home studio. Email me for location and details. 2 25-minute sits punctuated by a short embodied movement practice between. Come for the first sit only or stay for it all. Come as you are. You are enough.
Lastly – Thank you for reading!! We are so grateful for you.