Thittato

My meditation journal

237 posts in this topic

On 4/20/2019 at 4:16 AM, Karla said:

For real? You can do this?! 😯

Yes! Actually not really that hard. When one has gained stability in basic headstand it is just to wriggle ones feet into full lotus, but that seems impossible as long as basic headstand feels shaky :-)

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Posted (edited)

Upgrade of yoga and Chess goals

So my yoga-practice is going really well, I'm doing it daily and I feel really inspired to continue, so I'm going to upgrade one of the three poses I have as a goal to master from simple wheel pose to one legged wheel pose. I think that is my absolute favorite yoga-pose. Looks like a bow to me, with the leg in the air being a arrow aiming at eternity. Interesting the types of spaces one can get into by bringing the body into a certain pose. For instance with the warrior poses I feel that my warrior attitude is really experienced, and some poses can bring a deep sense of surrender, for instance seated forward fold. Here is a picture of one legged wheel pose that I googled.

Also today my next Chess-goal came to me. I'm going to reach 1200 in rating at Chess.com in Blitz-games before I'm satisfied with my Chess-studies. Cool to take it from just being a maniacally enthusiastic beginner to actually becoming a more serious intermediate player. So my goal is to reach intermediate level player at 1200. Feels like this thing has already gotten a lot more grounded and integrated, so I'm not afraid of this interest anymore. Having some yoga-goals keeps my nerdy side in balance. Anyways, so this is a little Chess-sculpture me and a friend made after we smoked a joint after we had played in a tournament together. He successfully beat one of this towns best poker players twice in Chess. Even though this poker player is also a beginner in Chess, it was a huge kick for both of us, because he has some psychological tricks that makes him a dangerous opponent (he always beats me even though my rating is much higher than his. Anyways, this friend of mine, I was able to teach him everything I know about Chess and open his eyes to this same passion that I have for this game in a very short time, so it was a huge kick to share this enthusiasm with a friend, so we went home and smoked a joint and got pretty manic about Chess from all kinds of directions, making sculptures, seeing youtube videos on Astrology in Chess and lots of esoteric stuff haha. We even made a hiphop song devoted to our Chess-mentor. Haha...... It was pretty trippy. So here is our cute little sculpture, and I choose to make it into a symbol for my goal of reaching 1200.

Kind of interesting to be obsessed with both yoga and Chess these days. Not sure what the common ground is, but at least they are both from India, which, I guess, is a huge common ground. Yoga for my body, emotions and for my spirituality, and Chess as an exercise for my logical thinking.

By the way, I've said before here that weed is no friend of mine, and it still isn't because it is usually waaaay toooo intense for me. Never understood all those people that says it makes them chill. Never been my experience. But anyways, a few times it can be interesting to use it for the sake of creativity, but I'm usually really glad when I wake up the next day and I'm back to normal intensity of life, instead of the super-intensity from being high. So to me I think smoking weed is like a psychedelic trip I can do a few times when I feel like it, but it will never be recreational. It has always been super-intense work to me.

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Edited by Thittato

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Went for a walk in nature and kept thinking about this connection between yoga and chess, what could that possible be, and of course the connection is ----- martial arts!

Chess is martial arts for the mind - a battle between you and your opponent's armies.

I like to think that I have this little personal ninja training going on. That somehow all these things I'm interested in are compiling up to a broad set of ninja skills.

Perhaps I should add a little bit of martial arts to my yoga practice to really bridge this gap between yoga and chess.

Found a cool youtube video: Yoga Meets Martial Arts Practice: Silky Force.

"This Yogea practice fuses Martial Arts, Yoga and Qi-Gong as it provides a sense of grounding, a general awakening of the joints, and spaciousness in the mind."

Haven't seen it yet, but sounds awesome.

And as a social worker in a psychiatric hospital we can have some really violent situations going on sometimes, so some martial arts training would really help with my sense of safety in those situations. Of course we carry alarms, and we are always lots of people in those situations, but martial arts would certainly increase my self-esteem and sense of safety, and contribution with safety to everybody involved when we're dealing with aggression.

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First time today I did a program that where I worked on all the three peak poses I'm aiming to master. Half of the program was from a guided youtube session on how to prepare for the splits, and the rest of it I improvised on my own. These youtube videos is a really great support, but I like the fact that I'm starting to improvise more and more on my own.

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This morning I only did 10 sun salutations, and then I started working directly on all the three poses I'm trying to master. I can already see improvement in all three of them, and that is really motivating. Now I have the choice of alternating between more general programs and self-composed programs where I work directly on these three poses, and that gives me some nice variation. Nice to aim directly for something, and then to add some variation to that and do more general stuff where I work on my general strength and flexibility. Some poses I want to go deeper with, and then to dance around these poses with more general stuff. I'm starting to get a sense of how I can keep this going for a long time.

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Interesting how I first started writing here around October right after an ayahuasca ceremony I did. I felt a huge pull towards journaling about music again since ayahusca is a very musical psychedelic. There is always a lot of musicians in the ceremonies I've been part of. So my first journal was about me trying to go deeper with my guitar and my djembe. And then, as I cycle through these various interests that I have I went over to drawing again and my journaling became about that. Eventually enough was enough which is another part of my cycles when I understand that I need to re-affirm my commitment to meditation again and stop flying around out there in all kinds of various interests. So for a while I journaled about meditation, which is why this new thread was created for that purpose. And then for a long while I had a parallel process going on with Chess (which is still going on). I am somehow always searching for my path. What is going to be my vehicle here in this world? I think it was good to hide out for a while in the Chess-world, because I've just been so shattered to pieces by the emotional difficulties I've had lately. The difficult emotional processes I go through are triggered by this difficult therapeutic process I'm going through as part of my therapist education (I will only finish this 2nd year now and then quit, altogether the education is 4 years but I need a serious break). So anyways I've been so totally shattered to pieces, and all my old strategies for having a life and a purpose, they have all been dissolved, so I've tried desperately to go back to stuff I used to do before for periods - the art world, psychedelics, guitar, etc etc, but none of it gave me that sense of purpose I had before when I was really going for it with any of these things - I couldn't really build that identity around any of these things as I used to before. So now as this 2nd year is getting close to its end I think I have actually managed to get through this difficult emotional process, at least much of it, and seems like I'm much more on fire again with vitality and spiritual strength. So it was very interesting that yoga was the thing that I was eventually going to land on as part of this journaling as the vehicle to pull me through all this (of course having a wonderful therapist also helped). My main focus for the last 10 years (at least) for my spiritual practice has been vipassana meditation, but now it is time to have something else as my main focus for a while, and I'm planning on spending at least half a year doing yoga as my main spiritual practice. Perhaps I go back to vipassana meditation after a while, but for now it is certainly a good timing to spend more time on yoga. Yoga was originally only meant as a preparation for meditation as I understand it, but I certainly find it to be a good meditation on its own right.

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Holy moly! I was already ALMOST able to get down into full split. Like waaaay closer than I could possibly imagine. Only when I had the left leg out in front, though. Somehow I was much more flexible that way than with the right leg out in front. It is usually like that - one side is more flexible than the other. And then I was also able to go much deeper into the wheel than ever before. Like when I do the wheel it doesn't really look like the wheel because my lower back hasn't been flexible enough to lift me fully into it, but this time I think it is seriously starting to look like something - and it has gotten a lot more stronger so it is much easier to lift myself up into it, and also the balance feels much better. Perhaps now I can just continue to work directly on these three poses I'm aiming at, every day, as long as my body doesn't give me any signals to cool down. Of course I will also continue to do more generalized programs, so I will find ways to put these three poses into those programs. This really helps me creating that flow where more generalized warm up sequences just naturally lead into the peak poses. The peak poses are sort of the arrow-head in the sequence, but they need a much larger supporting structure to have any power or validity.

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Posted (edited)

Hurrah! Did that same program today. It is clear that now I have a foundation in all these three poses. It is not like I get fully into them, but at least now I get pretty far into them, and it doesn't feel like some clumsy weak attempt where I struggle to keep the balance, but it feels like I have a strong foundation and that I'm familiar with using my body that way. Also it seems like my body can handle it, and so far it has only gotten stronger by practicing this way. Now that all these three poses are starting to feel strong and balanced and that my body can handle it, I don't see anything standing in the way of me mastering them. I will just continue to surrender deeper into them day by day.

In one way, as I see it, I have already gotten to where I wanted to be with my yoga. Something that felt a bit weak and fragile now feels like a strong foundation for launching my practice into the next level. When I have these three poses down I think they will open the door for doing all kinds of cool stuff :-)

(I'm not lifting one of my legs off the ground yet in wheel pose, btw, so it is not one legged wheel pose, only normal wheel pose so far.)

Edited by Thittato

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Posted (edited)

Microdosing on mushrooms

What a day!

So I worked night-shift tonight, woke up a bit earlier than expected, did a really awesome yoga-session and figured "hey, I'm not working until tomorrow evening again so lets microdose on shrooms!"

So I did a little ceremony while ingesting the shrooms and went immediately to the local bathhouse to sink into the warm water and the sauna while waiting for the effect. Microdosing is like a hidden treasure I've found out, because usually people (I certainly was!) is a bit greedy for more of a psychedelic adventure and microdosing takes you to this in-between state where you are neither tripping nor quite in your normal state and you're kind of longing for a more pronounced effect and it can be a bit confusing to not feeling that it quites takes of, but this sort of tension is exactly the hidden door into something quite wonderful. First of all staying with that tension and letting it grind through your whole system in a sort of loving and accepting meditative way is very therapeutic, and once that tension has been worked through one gets to a place of feeling very released and then it is actually like one is walking around in ones normal state just with a little extra spark of inspiration, energy and a very mild euphoric trippy feeling. It is like getting some extra super-powers without loosing touch with just normal everyday state.

It was amazing working with this tension while I sat in the sauna. I was really letting the heat just knead into me. At some point I was feeling extremely lonely and oh my god how eventually I embraced this feeling and let it work through me. Felt so released afterwards and went for the ice water bath to sharpen up again when I was ready to step out of the vulnerability and into my strength again. It is important not to do this too early because then one escapes that possibility of a full release but I think my timing was just right.

After that I've been hanging out this whole evening with a really awesome buddy, we've done yoga together, walked around in town, and pretty much talked about everything between heaven and earth. He started exploring sadomasochism half a year ago and we've talked alot about the relationship between sadomasochism and tantra. I'm not particularly into neither sadism nor masochism, and if I even have sides like that they must be buried somewhere deep in my subconsciousness, but it was very interesting to see how much it has done to him and how much more of his being he is able to own. I never seen his spark so strongly before, and it seems like he is very grounded at the same time. Me myself I very much love tantra by the way, and me and one of my ex-girlfriends was very much into it together. In Tantra they have  this saying - "Rise by that which makes you fall." The way I see it is that if can own and approach our dark sides with consciousness and acceptance they become strengths instead of strong energies that are locked down by shame that probably in many ways keeps lots of your potential locked down. We concluded that sadomasochism is probably a very extreme way of making these suppressed forces in our psyches conscious again. He showed me a lot of the tools that they use, and I tried one of his whips, just to swing it around in the air and make that snap sound and it made me wonder if I had a side like that myself, I felt quite some power rising in me while I did it, but I don't feel particularly drawn to go there, not quite yet at least ;) Anyways, the day was just totally over the top amazing in a very grounded chill microdosing kind of way.

So now I came home, and I just did a few games of Chess, and I reached a new record of 1098 in rating in Blitz-games. I've never been over 1100 before, and I'm always so nervous when I get close to a new milestone again that I can hardly play. If I win my next game I will be over 1100 for the first time, so perhaps before that game I will really warm up properly and make sure my concentration is really at its best. It is kind of a nut to crack the recipe for what will make me play at my best? Sometimes an attitude of carelessness can be really beneficial as well. But in the end it seems like for each new milestone I reach I have tightened up my game being much less sloppy and just basically much more "economical" about my game not giving away anything for free - like really giving a clear signal to my opponent that this will be a really tight game and I'm just waiting like a hawk for him to make a weak move.

I told my friend that Chess is like a reality check for me. And really that is exactly what it is. There is no chance of bullshitting in Chess. Your skills are what they are, clear and pronunced and out into the open. It fucking sucks to loose. I mean, I feel so bad when I loose a game I almost won, and the winning streaks can end any time. But that's what is so great about it. No matter how enthusiastic I feel about Chess I cannot build up my own little manic world around it and move into it and define my own rules and all that stuff which on the extreme sides of things, when taken way too far, leads to psychosis. No, with Chess I'm constantly exposed to a reality check, and it is so good for me that I can't just take off with it. If I keep playing for too long then my focus will be gone and I will start to loose a lot and then it will totally suck to continue playing. I see a refinement going on. I had tendencies of both being a poor winner and a poor looser, but gradually through this pain-process I'm refined into a gentleman who has a good attitude about both winning and loosing.

It is over a month since I microdosed last time, and that time was when the fire really came back to my yoga-practice again, and I have to say that I will conclude todays journey with saying that without yoga none of this would have been possible. Yoga is a daily discipline for me now, and without it I would have felt so much more fragile and frazzled, but yoga is really really really the most important thing that I do every day. It is my foundation for everything else that I do. So glad my buddy is so into yoga himself. It was amazing to share that enthusiasm together.

I'll end this post by a quote by one of my favorite yoga teachers, Adi Shakti, from her instagram-account:

"Yoga is more than a practice. Yoga is more than a word. It is more than physicality. Yoga is art, it is science, it is a dance. It's a dance between surrendering to what was and controlling what is. It is between pushing the what will be and letting go of the what has been. Knowing when to push and when to release becomes part of your spiritual progression. This is your dance and it becomes part of the ever-evolving exploration of your being."

 

Edited by Thittato

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Hmmmm....... That last post was a bit over the top. Or the microdosing session was a bit over the top. It was a pretty strong microdose, but still within the range of a microdose, and not a mild trip. I experienced a bit of a backlash the next day. Perhaps if I continue to microdose I should make the doses even smaller. Like this last session was too ecstatic. Fun there and then, but it still took me more out of my everyday mode than what I actually desire. And I was a bit drained the next day. Guess I still did some fun explorations, and integrated properly I think it will be useful. Now for the first time since I opened up the door to psychedelics (and weed) again I think it has started again to take a larger role in my life than I like. Before I had this love/hate relationship towards psychedelics because I was like really obsessed with them but I hated the obsession. Now I think I have a better ability to just listen to my needs, so that I don't have to have this either/or attitude. And now my needs are telling me that I would like to dial down this interest a few notches until this last session has been integrated properly.

Let me say no more weed or psychedelics until at least I have finished the last weekend-seminar of this 2nd year in my gestalt-therapist education that will be held 24th and 25th of May. That will give me some space to properly integrate both my relationship towards my new-found interest in microdosing, that I have started to work full-time again, and that this 2nd year is close to its end and all what all those processes has been to be.

I'm still a bit insecure in my job as a social worker. So I have a much greater desire to really shine in this role than I have for any psychedelic explorations what-so-ever, and I think psychedelics can easily make me pre-occupied with something that seems much more exciting than just a normal job, so I better be careful not to loose my focus on the here and now in my daily life.

Ok, so integration is the key now. Glad I only have mild experiences to integrate this time, and not those hardcore psychonautish having been far far out in the kosmos kind of experiences I was so eager for before.

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Interesting how suddenly something just clicked around my yoga practice when I figured out those three peak poses that I wanted to build my yoga-practice around. The same thing just happened right now with my Chess where the four openings that I want to build my opening repertoire around suddenly became clear. I had two already, but I needed another two to have a more dynamic repertoire. The four of them are: The London System, The Black Lion System, The Italian Game and the Sicilian Defense.

Anyways, I've had a few days off from yoga, and that has been really nice. My body started to get a little worn because of all that yoga - but in a good way it seems because now that I've had few days off and my body has had a chance to really restitute it feels stronger than ever. My knees and my lower back has always felt a little bit weak - but now it seems like all that weakness is totally gone and they just feel open and strong.

Whenever I intensify either my yoga practice or my meditation practice I seem to manage to put too much strain on either, knees, lower-back or both, but this time I managed to intensify in a way that seemed to only strengthen and open up these body parts, so that was really nice and I think it is a good idea to take even a few more days off to really allow my body to fully restitute. Better just be grateful for what I have already, and balance my tendency towards striving with appreciating the joy of the simple things.

Even my previous microdose session feels more integrated already. That negative counter-reaction I had has been more processed and I feel more grateful for it, but still I'm glad that I'm going to have some more space around my psychedelic adventures before my next one. This is a good time to focus more on my job, my yoga, my Chess and finishing this 2nd year of my education. Ie. in general things that connects me with this worldly life. It is interesting how ordinary and normal I can sometimes feel. I guess I just want to become comfortable with being an ordinary dude. A passionate and conscious ordinary dude.

There is always a risk of shaking things up a bit too much with psychedelics, but the nice thing about microdosing is that things usually doesn't get shaken up too much. I'm curious about how I would react to even lower doses. Perhaps I could find the "just right" point where the experience integrates itself in the present moment because it is neither too much nor too little but just right.

But I'm glad I'm not in a rush to explore that. Something for the future.

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@Thittato It's uplifting to read your Journal. With your success and enrichment with the intense chess hobby and your yoga practice blossoming, you seem to be entering states of flow. 👍🙋‍♂️🙏


"To have a free mind is to be a universal heretic." - A.H. Almaas

"We have to bless the living crap out of everyone." - Matt Kahn

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On 5/8/2019 at 4:23 AM, Zigzag Idiot said:

@Thittato It's uplifting to read your Journal. With your success and enrichment with the intense chess hobby and your yoga practice blossoming, you seem to be entering states of flow. 👍🙋‍♂️🙏

I'm very glad to hear!  Your comments are always very helpful :-) Yes, there is certainly a lot of flow states these days. I think I've found a really cool combo with yoga and chess :-)

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Posted (edited)

Hmmmm......... Did yoga again, both yesterday and today. I'm suspecting these emotional difficulties I've experienced a lot of lately (last years!) are about to reach their end. Or at least it feels like I'm at the tail end of them. This therapist education I've been doing 2 years of (altogether 4 years) which I'm probably not going to continue - the first 2 years where supposed to be only self-process in order to get your own stuff dealt with first before starting to train to become a therapist. Seems like that was right, that two years was enough to deal with my own shit. Really took the worst of it here at the end of this 2nd year. Never felt so utterly miserable before. All that hidden shit of feeling like a looser and a complete failure that I've been escaping from by trying to look somehow successful on the outside were totally exposed. Such a pain to feel myself through those very shameful feelings, but now I feel really awesome again. I suspect there will be more cycles of this, but perhaps the worst of it is dealt with now. I feel really good about myself right now. Wish everybody could feel this way about themselves. I get tears in my eyes when I write this. Self-love is our birthright.

Of course I'm not going to declare myself done with these processes, because always when I feel good I get fooled by some notion that this time it is going to last forever, and I forget all about what suffering was..... Haha..... 

Edited by Thittato

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Did a really awesome yin-yoga session yesterday before I went to work night-shift, and had a really good flow at this shift. I'm really getting back into the groove at my job. Looking forward to be there the whole summer, because somehow I still haven't really settled into my role as a social worker, probably because my whole identity structure has always been quite unsettled with so much stuff I'm always trying to figure out about myself and always being in some sort of constant crisis, so this desire I have to really find myself in my professional role as a social worker is big. I do a really good job when I'm in the flow, but when I have to deal with these emotional difficulties I always periodically go through then I become passive and too introverted to really do my best and seems like my colleagues also gets a bit insecure about this different co-worker that they can't really figure out. Doesn't really help that I live in a small town where people are not so open either. When I worked in a psychiatric hospital in a bigger city it was so much easier to just be myself at my job, everybody was so much more open and inclusive, but in this small town being different makes it harder to integrate into the group at my job. But I'm determined to really crack this code and find flow in all parts of my job. Most important thing is just to radiate friendliness towards everybody combined with a willingness to work.

When it comes to my yoga I seem to be much less in a rush to get anywhere with it and that feels really good. I simply just have to continue to do my practice every day and then it will all sort itself out as it is meant to.

And when it comes to my chess I have finally found a book that I will study seriously from beginning to end and do all the exercises in. So far my chess-studies have been very sporadic and without any clear structure, but if I want to reach my goal of reaching 1200 I have to do something different because I don't improve anymore just by this sporadic approach, so working through this book, bringing out my physical board and playing through all these exercises, I think that is exactly what I need, and it is also pretty nice to sit there with a small little book and a physical board and pieces because then I will not have to sit in front of my computer, and the whole things gets a more contemplative feel to it. Exactly what made me fascinated with Chess, and it will also take my focus towards something more healthy then these types of addictive dopamine-rush fast-paced internet games. I've seen people play many thousands of these fast-paced games without improving much - so some other type of more structured study is obviously needed. Probably I wouldn't need to sit down with this book more than 15-20 minutes per day either, and that is nothing compared to how much time internet-playing can gobble up. So actually sitting down with this book without being online I think will contribute both to my sense of discipline and my sense of living a yogic lifestyle. Yeah I can already feel that this unhealthy part of this thing gets scaled down quite a lot just by making into a more structured study. That whole gigantic monster inside of my mind that this thing has become suddenly just got scaled down into a cute little book and a cute little board that even gives me a good excuse not to sit in front of my computer.

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I almost regret setting this goal of reaching a rating of 1200 in Chess, because in many ways it seems like such a useless thing, and perhaps I'm loosing interest as well in this game, but it will be a nice and honorable way to round it off if it turns out I'm done with this after reaching that goal. And anyways it seems like a worthy thing to study this game for a period, so nice to push it a little bit further here at the end - just to really hammer it out. That is something I like to do with all the things I've pursued - to really hammer it out. So studying this book feels like homework - before my parents got divorced I was a very clever little boy at school - but after they got divorced I got depressed and totally lost interest in school and especially in homework, so this will be my opportunity to become friends with homework again. So here they are - my little chess board and my little study-book. I think they look pretty cute together :-)

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Striving

Damn, still so much stress around this Chess-thing. I think it is the same thing I get with anything I get fixated on, even yoga - I make it into a mental concept that I want to walk around and groove on and being pre-occupied with all day long - like something to keep me mentally busy with. It is not so easy to see with Chess because there it is tempting to fall into the trap of beliving that the more I think about it the better I will get, but with yoga it is a little bit easier to see that when I make a mental concept out of yoga that I walk around thinking about all day long, that that is not the same as what yoga is actually supposed to bring me to - a state of presence and rest. So I think generally that is what I desire the most - to spend my time much more in a state of presence than to walk aroung being mentally pre-occupied with whatever I’m fascinated by at the moment. So I guess this is just one more reminder of allowing myself to really settle down with life as it is right now instead of always chasing for something - better score in Chess, more advanced yoga poses, etc. I mean it is fine to have goals, but probably far from necessary to think so much about them as I do. Striving is the word. I’m very often in a state of striving towards something - instead of just enjoying the process. Perhaps because of bad learning habits I ended up with this habit of easily getting into striving, so I better just continue to use my yogic skills to relax when I catch myself having worked myself into a state of striving yet again. Feels relaxing just to write this. I stopped and started breathing deeper. I can do this anytime. The choice is always there. I just got to see through all the excuses my mind makes up for why it has to be caught up in something.

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3 days of doing 10 sun salutations per day.

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10 sun salutations this morning, and then I worked on the three poses I'm aiming at mastering. Could see improvement in being able to go deeper into the wheel-pose. Seems like I just need more upper-body strength and more flexibility in my lower-back to get fully into it. That pose gives a really awesome stretch for the whole front-side of my body. Feels like even my eyes and my mouth get a stretch.

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Posted (edited)

Suddenly I was invited as a guest-musician into a professional project between a drummer and a published poet who has this really cool project where the drummer makes a really cool rhythmic soundscape with his drums while the poet reads his poems. My role was to fill in with sounds from the didgeridoo. Holy moly how anxious I was, but it went really well. This is my first public performance playing didgeridoo. Now that I'm finishing up this 2nd year of this gestalttherapist education that I don't want to continue with I hope to do much more creative stuff, so this was a nice kick-off. From a meditative/therapeutic point of view it is very intense how the tension builds up in me before something like this, and then it is released. Also my meditation for that day (yesterday) was to go out in the forest and play didjeridoo by myself and just sink into a really meditative state. Perhaps that is why it felt like it took so long time to land after this because this is a very shamanistic instrument so playing it activates some really deep stuff. Yeah, I'm absolutely certain something like that was in the workings because the whole thing was a very trippy experience.

Edited by Thittato

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