Picture it: One minute, you’re lying on the yoga room floor in your most comfy PJ bottoms; the next, you’re astral traveling through the sky, landing on a leaf in a mountain stream.
I spent most of the afternoon with my new Yoga Nidra Scripts book, looking for something different for my Tuesday class.
I found the above leaf visualization script and thought my students might like it.
In the course of this story, their wisdom guide appears, ready to answer questions and provide guidance.
After this auspicious meeting with their guide, they return to their sacked-out bodies right where they had left them, on the yoga room floor.
I kind of liked it.
Except for the meeting with the wisdom guide.
Whenever I tell stories with metaphysical beings in them, I worry that the story’s listener will take these beings literally.
I worry they will think these beings live in another dimension, far, far, away, and they must do special guided meditations with accompanying gong music to access them.
And granted, maybe that first encounter has to be exotic, but after that, the hope is that they will understand that the wisdom guide came pre-installed with their operating system. And not only that, but it can be accessed at any time.
And the only reason they might not have realized it before is that their cultural and social conditioning has been so loud and warped that it completely drowned out the wisdom signals coming in.
But now that the inner wisdom guide’s voice has broken through, they don’t have to do Yoga Nidra, Holotropic breath work (my entryway), or any other voodoo to access it.
They don’t have to enter a trance. They can invite it to tea and just talk.
Or pick up a pen and let it speak through morning pages.
Or take it for a solitary walk.
Or let it knead bread dough.
Or crochet a scarf.
Or dig in the dirt with a trowel.
Any activity with a conscious and significant reduction in head noise will invite the muse, the voice.
Making art, playing music, doing yoga, sitting in meditation—all these activities create space for the inner guide to be heard.
But most of the time, we’re too busy listening to the other voice, the neurotic crazy roommate in our head, who chatters non-stop, has an opinion about everything, and thinks they need to do a play-by-play of our life as we’re living it:
So, after Target, I need to head over to Home Depot and pick up those paint chips, and oh yeah, remember to get a spackle bucket.
Who’s talking here? And who’s listening?
How many of us are in here, anyway? What’s going on?
I believe the voice I hear talking to myself, narrating my life, is me.
Any wise, insightful thoughts about my life only come if I do something unusual: Yoga Nidra, Holotropic breath work, therapy, mushrooms.
But it’s not true. Who I am is neither the wise Yoda nor the crazy roommate.
Who I am is the one who listens.
Who I am is the one who notices the voices talking in the first place.
Who I am is the one who can drop back and say, “Well, look at you talking to yourself about nonsense!
Who I am is the one who can drop down below the surface chop, sink into the deep sea, and watch the storm raging on the surface, calmly and dispassionately.
Who I am is the mirror reflecting, without judgment, everything that passes before it.
The wisdom guide voice and the crazy roommate voice are just telling a story. The story of me. Filling in gaps, embellishing, helping my life make sense, and making me up as I go along.
Who I am just reads, watches, and listens.