I'm intrigued by the idea of reserving space in my home to meditate, perform rituals, pray, journal, maybe take the accidental nap here and there 👀...I have a comfy little spot now, but I'm always on the lookout for design ideas.
I've got a favorite spot in Chicago that is a beautiful tea house in this gorgeous Japanese Garden. It feels so private and secluded, but it's in the middle of a huge metropolis!
As much as I love me some tea houses, it's not exactly my design aesthetic so I set out to search for modern interpretations of these personal sacred spaces. I am drawn to cozy and bohemian, but was surprised at the way some of the modern spaces (the all glass and lucite box in Kyoto?!) made me swoon, too. Here are a few of my faves:
The spiritual journey, for me, can sometimes feel like a 1000-piece puzzle with missing corner pieces. Any scroll of Instagram is chock full of memes suggesting I need to "Let It Go" or articles about the importance of "releasing your old stories". In theory, I understand, but sometimes I just feel like I need more. As a relative newbie on this journey I often find myself wonderingWHAT exactly do I let go of, how exactly do I release a story? Is there a Spiritual Journey for Dummies book out there, because I'm GREAT at following steps?! I can feel like I am lugging around 40 years of stories, and I'm afraid I'm gonna drop the wrong one. I can just picture the Universe rolling it's eyes at me,
"No, girl. I didn't mean that one. Don't let THAT one go, you need that one...duh!"
That said, I think the biggest lesson I take from this adventure is that there can't be a Dummies book FOR A REASON. Life isn't something you get to sail through like a Math test: cram the night before and then pass the test. The Universe will keep sending me lessons, and I find the answer through the experience of the lesson. The experience IS the answer, the puzzle was never meant to have corners--that is just my old fashioned brain still holding onto old patterns.
To give an example, something happened today that felt like a personal shift-something I could share that might help someone else. Some days, these lessons just CLICK and I feel like I am actually making headway. (Side note: This is something I need to constantly remind myself-- I can be a good person and still have faults. I can be kind and still have things in my past i'm not proud of. I'm not going to change everything about myself overnight, and my goal isn't perfection-- it's authenticity. So, I celebrate the tiny victories.)
So, here is my real life experience with letting go:
I have always been an emotional, sensitive human (Cancer sun and moon 😩 ). As a little girl, the family joke was that if my parents just gave me a look I would burst into tears. I was very shy and had a very tender heart. As the little sister to a tough as nails Leo, I eventually decided that I had to "show no weakness" to survive intact. When the familiar lump in my throat (signifying sadness, hurt) would start to form, I found ways to fight back and turn that into anger. Anger was strong, emotion was vulnerable--that's what I thought and that's the pattern I started to repeat. I smushed my sensitive nature down so far, that my go-to response to stimuli became one of defense, nearly all the time. Not a fun way to live.
So, here's the shift moment: I had an experience today where I was given something by my landlady that made me start to slip into my old pattern: DEFENSE. "What does THIS mean" and "what exactly is she trying to say?!" I immediately slipped into my triggered pattern. Back went up. Started to climb into my shell and warm up my pinchers.
But then, I stopped. New brain fired up. This item was completely innocuous. She hadn't said anything negative and MOST LIKELY was actually trying to be sweet. And furthermore, who am I to decide her intention? I am free to assign any meaning I want to an item, so why would I choose a negative one? I don't want to. Whatever past story I have in my head about what she meant in giving me this is MY baggage. So, I let that go. I choose to see the item as a kind gesture, a thoughtful gift...and let my old story slip away. I sent a thank you text to her, and meant it. It felt really freeing to use that practice of changing perception...The memes are right, I really needed to let it go.
[Update: My landlady stopped by for a visit later, and I shared what happened. She had NO idea I would take it the wrong way. She had two of something and wanted to share, plain and simple. The next day, she text ME that sharing the practice of checking the meaning I assign to things was helpful to HER as she had started implementing it into her day!!! Magical]
i am beckee.
Lover, Writer, Artist, Curser, Creator, Moonchild, LA Dweller, and Star Gazer on a Quest to Find the Beauty and Love in Everything