It's a lovely Sunday morning, and I wake imagining I'll walk the kilometre to the homestead for breakfast but I don't manage to get out of bed soon enough, so I drive! As I walk in the door Ray says, "Have you lost your camera?" "Yes, I left it here on the table last night," I laughed. But Ray wasn't laughing, "Brian found it outside this morning, it looks like it's been run over."
"OH NO! Thank goodness I downloaded all the photos last night," I said, as my only reply. After all, what can I say, it's been done now? Sure enough she shows me one squashed $700 camera.
"Handling the pressure easily with meditation and relaxation" is this morning's workshop and it is open to both the men and women of Muka. Interestingly, only women turn up, including one who's driven from Kelleberrin, a 3 hr return trip. They haven't meditated before but they know about stress. Don't we all! What matters is what we do about it.
I start by explaining about meditation, as I want to ditch some of the myths about it. Meditating is a way of clearing the mind of muck. It's similar to having a shower in the morning to clean the body; meditating cleans the mind of the negative thoughts, nasty comments and stress we pick up during the day.
So many people tell me they can't meditate. Of course they can as long as they don't expect instant bliss, and they practise.
Mukinbudin has a "Life-Trail". Scattered along the walk are exercise machines – yes, in the open air. What a great idea. I don't like exercising in air-conditioned gyms but outdoors feels good! I went on the "Lower-body warm-up" machine yesterday, but are my legs now toned up? No. It takes more than one go to get fit. The mind is the same. Building up the calm in your mind needs regular practice.
We start meditating – just a short body-scan at first. People are worried about falling asleep but no-one does. They're surprised to find parts in their bodies that are tense. On to a "Peace and calm" meditation next and then a "Breath meditation". This goes for longer and that's when people often become restless – but the group is still. They are calming down nicely.
Now we're doing a walking meditation, happy that no-one is watching as we are walking up and down, up and down, focusing on our feet. "It's a great meditation when you're tired or sleepy", I tell them, "I do it often to quieten myself down if I've had a frantic day and my mind is racing".
We are finishing and one of the women exclaims, "Look how different we are, we were all so stressed when we walked in and now look at us, we're so relaxed." Time for a cup of tea, in celebration, I reckon!
I tell them about the Confident-Woman meditation CDs, "Happy not hassled" and many of them buy a copy to take home because they want to keep practising. Why wouldn't you, when it relaxes you?
As I'm saying my goodbyes we talk about my coming back in spring to see the wildflowers and possibly meditating together on the rocks. Wild! I'm already looking forward to being back.
However, next I may be coming to a town near you! At this stage my plans are to go to Busselton, WA, in July and August; Denmark, WA, in September; Northam, WA, in October; and Sydney and NSW in November. If you want me to come and talk to your town, community or organisation and can gain a grant, or get sponsorship to cover the costs, or can raise the money yourself, then please do get in contact by clicking here.
But first I am off to try and get my camera fixed! Wish me luck, it looks very sorry for itself and I'm not confident anything can be done to resuscitate it.
Let yourself shine Mukinbudin.