Meditation Teaching: An Intimate Reflection

Keeping meditation teaching real, bringing vulnerability and truth to the moment is so vital to keep in alignment to be of service whilst teaching an important life skill. Perfectionism will go by the wayside if we can just relax and be our authentic selves giving permission for others to do the same.

I have been contemplating what meditation is and isn’t, to me. I have had extensive training in the more esoteric background and have now come into the actual learning of different meditation techniques and gaining the qualification to teach meditation to others. What I realise I do when I guide and teach meditation is merge the two teachings together. The pearls of wisdom from my previous esoteric teachers, gathered in chaotic circumstances to uncover truth in every moment and to live from this place, with that inner connection and embodiment is gorgeous and amazing. The stillness that came with some, or most of the techniques in meditation helped me to sink roots deeper and allow higher vibrations to more consciously flow through me in the delicious, deep and patient meditation methods. So that I could really steep in my own essence, witness myself with passionate intimacy and open my mind and body into a suppleness I haven’t experienced before in my life. From studying these seemingly opposite modalities, I can see how they both are a part of a continuum of ONEness. It is creating a beautiful merging of two opposite worlds and is simply enhancing my absolute respect for both modalities.

The more feminine approach is of letting go of restrictions, of embodiment, movement, to allow chaos, flow, rawness, beauty, power, grace, and love be a part of your life. Truly embody it and allow its expression to be present.  To experience the plethora of different feminine expressions within each one of us there is a need to be willing to journey into a space of letting go of control for a period of time whilst being guided by the facilitator (at the start). This is opposite of what many western cultures, and in fact many cultures teach- which is control, balance, restrict, silence, not make a scene, don’t express the full range of emotions- truth in the moment. This is often seen as ‘uncivilised’ and archaic, as if we have evolved from this type of behaviour…. but have we really evolved?The basis of these teachings I  previously spoke about revolve around the fact that it is energetic- the feminine. It is called shakti in the yogic tradition as the energy that moves form- the masculine. But, over thousands of years traditions have opted to serve only that which could be seen- the masculine physical world. So the feelings, emotions, energy within and around was ignored.

The teachings taught in the Occult traditions kept the flame of the relationship between the feminine and masculine energy alive. Focused on Oneness, in these teachings, both the energy (feminine) and the physical (masculine) were equally worked with. It was known that if energy is suppressed it doesn’t go anywhere, it is stored in the body. Furthermore, this can cause disease and illness in the body.  The feminine practices work to release stored energy which presents itself as pain, tension, or perhaps it hasn’t become represented in the physical form yet. So the energy clearing occurs by allowing the body to simply release what it needs to release, by moving the way it needs to move could prevent the physical expression of this, and act as a preventative or a stress release of pent up energy, kind of like pressing ‘re-boot’.

Ancient Egyptian Cults played a huge role in continuing the energetic thread of this ancient wisdom. It is in the balance of these two extreme energies that we can gain balance- not from stifling them, or restricting them with how we perceive ‘awakening’ should look. Relate this to today,  even meditation teachers fall under the pressure and culture of how they themselves should be. Now that I am adorned with this mysterious piece of paper giving me the authority to actually teach meditation to others, I have felt the energetics of the need to behave calm all of the time, or be perceived to be calm all of the time. That isn’t me. In this environment? During a pandemic? In lockdown with my two children? I have my personal practices which help me better parent and handle emergencies when called upon, but I do slip from time to time. I am human. I am perceiving in some circles some ‘acting’ other than what is true in the moment. My devotion is to stay real in the moment.

One thing to keep in mind is that there is no perfection in meditation. It’s a practice. Sometimes you go deep, sometimes you don’t. Honouring what arises wherever you are at in practice or in life is the perfection in it. Meditation teachers, or in fact even esoteric facilitators can get caught up on how they ‘should’ be perceived. What I feel is more important is truth. Is to show the humanness, as well as the amazing essence and divinity of someone. I can chat and even be telling a story before a meditation in my own authentic voice and expression that is relatable and HUMAN (sometimes I get excited and swear a little)- my point is, the sense of belonging can be shared. When it’s time for teaching and guiding meditation that ‘HUMAN ME’ slowly drains away and the depth of the practice comes in and service of the divinity or light, within a person and within the room is surrendered to in the moment, based on the energy of the room and who is present, we flow into a meditation aligned with this. Then after the meditation when everyone who wishes to share has shared, then I’ll chat and laugh and tell stories again. It’s a sacred union of humanness, ego and personality WITH connecting to something more than that…. just sublime….

Show me a meditation teacher who has done the work on themselves and I will see his or her authenticity. Being OK in their own methods, and styles, with life experience to have the maturity to hold space and willingness to learn from whatever is presented when it is presented is a must to gain the trust of those who are willing to enter the unknown with you. Humble to know it is the teachings, not themselves the people gather for. Devoted to getting their own ego out of the way to serve with sincerity, and devotion something higher than themselves within the room and within each person gathered. Leading by example only to reveal the truth that meditation is a tool to aid in the path of life- essentially entering the unknown and getting to know and connect to oneself in this amazing and often difficult process. It doesn’t matter which method you choose- masculine or feminine or bridging the gap between them, all can if taught in an intentional way, take you deep into connection and knowing thyself.

There are times when this is not always the case, for example some inherited diseases and illnesses, however doing a regular practice of what feels good for the body the soul has taken unique to each person, will help to reduce the ailments of the body in this instance. It is not simply a matter of moving the body and allowing it to subconsciously take care of things for you in the feminine. At least that hasn’t been the case for me, with two children to stay present for. I feel that we have evolved the masculine parts of us in this culture for a reason. Yes, there are distortions and the creation of patriarchy which has its faults, but we have the opportunity to bring consciousness or clarity to our lives. So, doing meditation under the more masculine method of witnessing, stillness, quietness is a perfect companion to the uncontrollable sometimes wild expression of the feminine.

For me, in my own practice, I cannot do one without the other, it feels like something is missing. The masculine helps us to live in this world, to be present to ourselves, to hold space for ourselves when things get difficult, to be witness with love, to act on plans and get things done out in the world. We need a healthy dose of this. But, in my teachings, there’s a gorgeous sacred union of diving equally into both, a cohesion. What one lacks, the other provides…. and vice versa. Oh, it’s such a beautiful path to walk on.

I hope you can join me in the future some time.

All my love,
Elise

The Courage to Enter Deep Spiritual Love (poem)

Oh, touch my heart, deeper, and deeper still….

Take me to the unknown, whisper truths in my ear

Take my hand, join me intimately, be ‘here’ completely

May I have courage to enter the unknown-

From formless to form and back again,

Immersed so deeply so that I may not be able to

Detect the delectable delights of the form

From the permeating energy of the formless.

Both, balanced, simultaneously-

Poised in the moment, and the moment proceeds

For hours and days- loving, processing and being….

Beyond the mind, yet including the mind

Excluding nothing… Accepting all of me

Rebirthed into myself over and over again

The joy, the grief, the knowing, the exploration,

The passion, the pain, the bliss, the love-

The ALL.

Oh, courage do not fail me.

I’ll be there…. in the unknown,

Basking, glowing, growing, breathing, rhythmically moving

To my own song…

 

Art by Kateryna Kovarzh

Written by Elise Heyward

Sexuality Unravels Within (Poem)

 

Sweat sizzling the body, breathless poise in the afternoon sun.
Tangible desire fills me to the brim as I accept this truth in the moment…
Touching, holding, passion boiling deeply- so deeply within
Oh, recycling, breathing balancing the energy
Grounding, opening, loving self deeply-
Exploring the edges within, embodying powerful energy- letting be…
Can’t help but wonder about the lover within me
Patiently watching my fluidity dripping where the flame rises
To meet my cool water within…
Steam rises and moves through my body, exuding out of my skin
Caressing every part of me like the naked touch of a lover
Stay….. stay here in the in- between a while longer….
Study Self, learn about the hidden parts, the exposed
No more hiding from my own gaze, let me dance and writhe within it.
Build the deep, potent fragrance of truth until courage is all there is
My love affair with truth continues, no matter how bereft I am left….


Written by Elise Heyward
Art by Angel Art Prints

The River and Her Divine Flow (poem)

The river has her banks filled to the brim
It skirts the rocks and land formations
She moves and turns….
Rises and flows…
As the banks attempt to contain her,
Holding firm as she caresses the sides,
Writhing, rising, gently massaging
Until the banks, firm and contained
Begin to crack and falter…
The foundations crumble
As the river claims her expanded form
Dancing, moving in her new found freedom
She tiptoes beyond her known contained river
And flows through the landscape…
Making love, being in sacred union
With the rocks and the deep caverns….
Life spills from her luscious flow
As the landscape surrenders to meet her…
Birthing lakes, creeks and ponds
Creating new life from this loving adventure.

Written by Elise Heyward

Art by Shelby Robbins

Saturate Me Again and Again

I am already soaked through to the bone from tending my garden,
Tending to my weeds and exploring my inner plants…
I implore you to saturate me to my core
That I may feel my pulsing energy from within
So that I may be immersed in the glorious
Connection and reunion with you…
Again and again and again
Of this I will never get tired
Saturate me so that my marrow purifies
And opens to the blinding radiance
Splaying untruths out of me…
Let me whisper only prayers from my lips
Poised in the timeless moment, surrendered
With the passion of an alive body, 
Opening, opening, opening to be saturated once more
Surround me, enter me, embrace me, love me-
For I am soaked through in the ever connecting light
Connection…. connection…. connection….. yes
Love…. deep, potent and infinite – It never left.

Featured Image by Leslie Ballweg

A Poem: From Here Let Me Live

I am awakened once more from my slumber with the Gods
It’s not the desire of the fleshly meeting, no…
Nor is it attempting to satiate the insatiable-
Which lingers as long as I shall have breath in my body,
Song in my throat, a beating heart and spirit in my eyes…
I surrender…..
I surrender…..
I surrender…..
Clean all parts of me that thinks it knows,
Replace it with the innocent curiosity of a child….
I surrender to that part of me that cannot be satiated-
That part that yearns more than anything for the most sacred union
Taking me beyond yet being within my own body more than ever
Allowing connection so deeply: Merging, infusing, creating…
Strong and true in my own being, whole within myself-
My practice, my creativity, my holding, my truth, my embodiment
Yet knowing this to be also in other-
For we are all connected, all part of the All.
I open to all that will come my way, all in the sacred unfolding
And so I continue the practice of union within Self-
Merging two opposites, surrendering, allowing and being in presence.
A deepening of love, of faith, of connection to the ALL
From here let me live….

Love Beyond: Connection and Sacred Union

Love beyond everything. Love beyond what the word means to you. Love beyond all conformity and things you think are true. Love beyond your mind and body. Love beyond the gentlest summer evening kiss….Love beyond partnership and roles and responsibilities. Love beyond your Self. Love beyond…. just beyond….And you will taste the sweetest of tastes, smell the most fragrant of flowers…Be touched by the most purest of intentions, entering and connecting the heart and infusing with the rest of the body, seeping into the depths of your being…. Loving, simply loving beyond- in whatever form it presents whether energetic or in bodily incarnated form. Do not pine for this, nor lust for it. It already exists within- like diving into a cool pool on a summer day: Let it surround you, immerse you, hold you, nourish you, provide the opposite of your potent elements within. Let it seep into your very core. And when you think you cannot bare it. When there is a moments pause to come up for air…. that is when you surrender… surrender and lay atop of the vast depths of water- letting go of all that lies beneath, letting go of thoughts, letting go of past and future…Trusting the sacredness and love of being in this very moment- so present that the heart bursts open with rays of truth…. Once touched by sacred union, no conditioned love in life will do…

Featured art: Sacred Geometry Shop

I am Here, Trusting in Love Poem

How else can I send out this message any more

than to sit and feel my heart slowly and gently beat…

Tenderness flows through my veins, my voice rhythmic and tender

How else can I serve?-

But for the request of courage to keep my soft, sensitive heart

The way it is….

How else can I reflect to you?-

My utter devotion, my reverence and my embodied efforts

How else can I say to you?-

That I am yours to do with as you please?

How else can I confirm?-

My complete surrender to the grace?

When all I have are words that fall short

Time and again

And so here it is, with a gentle prayer in my human heart

With a hopeful thought in my mind

With my body devoted and open to union….

I am here, waiting, listening, devoting, honouring, loving….

I am here, ready, practicing and preparing…

I am here. I am here. I am here.

Always the lover, filled with faith.

Use me at your will.

Featured image by Viviane Fedieu Daniel

Balancing and Merging with the Mystic Within

To be whisked away in the moment, to have a breath paused- hanging in the air-

merging with the air surrounding

Indecipherable:

Where does our breath end and the air around us begin?

All merged, all as one, connected beyond the mind

Energy flows like the breath…

One energetic hologram moves through, and over another

When there are soul contracts, one unique energetic thread

Can unlock and free another thread held back and kept dull….

All is working with the divine timing, individual spirals spinning

both individually and connected with The One huge spiral of life

Within The One spiral of life, All- everything is included.

Balancing all of the elements within Self finding the

opposite energies and seeing the absolute truth between- beyond mind.

Balancing spiritual mystical work with everyday chores and life- seeing ALL as sacred

Finding ways to practice- keeping that sacred fire burning for truth deeply within

well lit, feeling it with mindfulness, fuelling it with self wisdom, keeping us in the moment.

Practicing devotedly, with discipline to master the mind. Yet open with wild abandon to allow

the energy to flow through, like a lover, wildly ecstatic, receptive and gloriously open to the moment.

The true balance of yin and yang, masculine and feminine- both aware of their bodies.

Both longing to be merged into one, both holding the opposites and defying the brain

Both energies harboured within the body, both opposites like magnets.

Neither one more powerful than the other. One surrenders to the other over and over again.

Only in this surrender is there sacred union with the un- namable.

Each has its subtle and potent roles…. energy rules the natural physical result.

Letting go, accepting and flowing with the natural rhythm of energy

is the responsibility of ours on the sacred, sacred path of truth….

You are a science to study… a single spiral among many making up The All…

 

Elise Heyward

Connecting in Times of Uncertainty

I want to say thank you…

Thank you to the clean masculine sacredly holding right now.

Meditating, loving, holding, embracing the changing instead of bracing in the change. Defying the fear rhythm that is descending upon the world, and sitting courageously in this, holding, trusting, feeling but not moving- praying for the feminine to rise to come and meet him. Lighting a candle for her to see her way, seeing through his intuitional eye, feeling with his open- still cool body, awaiting for the change she will bring. The change she must bring. The birth she is labouring through. He hears her screams of pain, feels her anger of war cries, tastes her blood and sweat as she claws herself free. Emotions swell in him and drip down his face, still he holds and stays open….. She has been imprisoned for too long, separated from him for too long.
He hears the inner call as she settles and purifies in her juices. He feels everything she has gone through in his stillness. He recounts all of her struggles, all of her pain, and the repression. Summoning all of his courage he stays, open. Feeling his breath, following his breath as it takes him into her, deeper into her… knowing this part of himself that has been separated for so long from him, his heart is blasted open with grief and simultaneous happiness at the union. One cannot survive without the other. It is a lonely desert within the mind without the flow and magic of the feminine, and it is a long lost dream, a figure of imagination too liquid and light to be brought into the physical to exist without the masculine. But when there is space…. Sweet, sweet space within the masculine, there is hope. When there is courage to be seen within the sacred feminine there is hope. Together, a hope is birthed, unbreakable and world changing. Together we must rise, encourage and love…. Within each one of us, put to rest the battle. Lay down your protective arms and your heated anger. Surrender over your fears and terrors…. It’s time to unite. Come back home….

Featured image by sacredgeometryartshop.