The sun came out and lit up the pasture for this afternoon’s course on Chemistry of Connection with horse whisperer RJ.
RJ demonstrated that force could not guide his horse to a task. He pushed, pulled, commanded and the horse resisted with more ire.
When RJ stepped to the side of the horse, took a secure and stable stance, and emptied his mind of aggression, when he became vulnerable, the horse and he walked together and easily fulfilled the task.
He defined vulnerability: doing something and knowing I could fail.
Fear of failure is perhaps the greatest fear, after fear of death.
It keeps us from leaving a job, following our heart, expressing love, desire, and hope. Fear of failure is felt even at our most reflective time alone with just our self. Even to fail in a way that only I will know, still I have trepidation and won’t take the risk.
Homeostasis is important. It keeps everything the same so that we move though a stable and familiar world. It is encoded into our survival. It guides our body’s disparate health systems. It governs family and community.
The desire to maintain what is familiar, and therefore safe, is so strong it’s actually an instinct for survival. Under threat, we fight for what we know.
To be vulnerable, to step naked and tremulous towards the unknown, requires courage and faith.
Where do I draw courage from? What is my safe mode?
Yoga calls it the refuge, sharanam.
Yoga is the refuge, it provides knowledge and support.
Or the Guru is the refuge; their knowledge, compassion, and universal teachings.
Or God is the refuge.
Refuge is the safe haven, the rest house for the weary, the dharmashala or shelter for the seeker.
Sri Guru Sharanam
Sri Krishna Sharanam Mama
When we played tag as children, we called out, the tree is home. And when we ran to the tree, and touched it, before we were tagged, we’d cry out “home base”. We were safe, though we were winded, though we had risked, now, we were safe.
Another type of tag, we called out our home base as we ran, we conjured it with words. So if in the moments before we were tagged, we cried, Olly Olly Oxen Free; we were safe. It was no different than touching home base, or clinging to the tree. We were safe. We were free.
Identify your safe space, your supports, and your refuge within and without.
Know what gives you inspiration, where you find compassion, and feel you are embraced.
And then run into the open with wings on your dream and a song of shelter in your heart.
Start with your dreams.