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What is your Axis Mundi?

July 27, 2021

I am starting some yoga... well, that might be exaggerated! I am learning to focus on breathing and slow movements. During the exercise Matt teaches about Axis Mundi... the center line that becomes our anchor and focus point. The line that connects heaven and earth. There is so much good to learn from Eastern Cultures, it seems that many times they are so much more in tune with their bodies, their minds and their souls. Our Western world often focuses on the external and creates a business that is hard to step out of.

I am by nature an activist, I love to engage, make the world a better place and create collaborations and partnerships and initiate new things. Sitting still, finding my Axis Mundi, started out with difficulty ....... my mind wanders, my body does not cooperate, my to do list gets longer....... it is just difficult to center. As time goes on I am learning to become still, at least for the few moments in my life.

I am exploring contemplative Christian practices too (like silence, prolonged times of prayer, quiet walking etc), to stay centered in these difficult times. This helps my heart to quiet down, my mind resets and I realize that I do not have to do, but also can just be.

All this still does not come easy, but I am learning. I am in a small group and we are starting tonight a Walter Brueggeman's book called "Sabbath as Resistance – saying No to the culture of now ". I am looking forward to learning more about setting aside time to really slow down and reflect.

Why am I sharing all this? Because you need to know that I can easily work myself to death. I have a tendency of not knowing naturally when to stop, or when enough is good enough. I am not good at taking care of my body and soul. How do I know when I have reached my limits? I watch stupid videos (like how fast people can build something or unimportant things like that). I know down time is good, but I know when I do it because my soul is tired.....

We live in a divided world, a world that seems to think that what we see is all that there is to life, that the bigger, better and stronger things in life are the solution to our broken hearts and souls. We live in a world where things don't stop, you can go shopping 24 hours, there are more sport activities for kids and adults then we could even partake in. We work harder hoping that some day that pays off and we can retire. We live in a world where the news cycle is 24 hours and we have to sort through what is news and what is propaganda. We live in a world that does not take our soul and our mind into consideration.

Maybe that is one reason why millions are on anti depression medication, many people use drugs to quiet their minds, and others work incredible hours to not stop and think.

COVID kind of forced a little break into our lives, we were home and many realized that they like the slower pace of life. We've had to slow down to breathe a bit, help us to find our center again (even if only for a short time).

How do we find our Axis Mundi in the crazy world we live in? In the Orthodox tradition they often talk about "thin spaces" - where heaven and earth come close together and we get to see some of the divine in the ordinary of life. I want to look for those thin spaces, celebrate when I see them, and that can only happen for me when I am centered, when I have my Axis Mundi.

How do you do selfcare? How do you stay centered? What will you do to see the divine in the ordinary every day?

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