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June 2024 Flying Needle News


June bursts forth blooming:

Mimosa and magnolia!

Summer scents abound.



Hello Friends of Flying Needle!


Happy Grain Ripens!


- third summer solar node -


Hope this finds you well during these interesting times!



Seasonal Musings & Reflections


Grain Ripens, or Grain in Ear, begins on June 5th.


Here in the North Carolina Piedmont, the cicadas stopped singing last week. Much gratitude for the glorious droning! Mulberries are ripening. Blue and strawberries are filling Farmer's markets. Butterfly weed, magnolias, mimosas, mountain laurel, mullein, passionflower, and tall yellow clover bloom. Box turtles are laying eggs. Many nesting birds are tending their second broods.


How is the lifeland where you are? Who is blooming-birthing-singing?




One of the great loves of my life is practice.


A common verbal definition of practice is cultivating a habit, and/or skill through repetition. In its nominative form, practice is often defined as: action as opposed to thoughts/idea; and work done by people who have spent long periods of time acquiring a high level of skill.


In this case, I am defining practice as: daily iterative engagement and inquiry with and within a process of discovery in relationship to a particular form. Ideally, this is both rigorous and playful.


How do we organize the body in gravity?


How do we move within space?


How do we orient attention and intention?


These are some of the delicious questions that practice orients us towards, and invites us to explore.


Simply engaging with these questions can deepen our experience of living in powerfully generative and nourishing ways. Practice is an opportunity to cultivate curiosity.


Curiosity and fear share neural architecture in such a way that some neurologists and philosophers maintain it's not possible to occupy both states simultaneously. If I can get curious about my experience, whatever it is, I have the opportunity to engage from a spaciousness and calm, rather than fear, anxiety, and contraction.


This is not to suggest that there is not a place for fear – it is an ally that has the capacity to keep us alive and safe. At the same time, we often feel fear and anxiety based on theory (what we think is happening, or will happen) rather than practice (what is happening).


The knowledge of self that is the fruit of practice helps us to navigate experience with curiosity. From this orientation we have the opportunity to enter into a clearer relationship with what is happening rather than our ideas and stories about what is happening.


And this is all independent of the unique insights, qualities, and skills that are the specific fruits of a particular practice.


My primary practice relationships are breathing, stillness, and movement. The main practice forms that I explore them through are sitting and standing meditation, internal martial arts, Chinese medicine in the clinic, and parenting.


How do you practice?



May your Summer days be filled with beauty, mystery, and friendship! 


May you and your kin feel both rooted and free!


May we walk in gratitude with our Ancestors!


May all being and becoming receive nourishment!



Curiosity

Beckons us deeper into

Playful inquiry.


It is my sincere hope that you have found something of use in these words.


If you know folks who you feel would enjoy this newsletter, please forward it their way! Thank you!


Wishing you and all your relations wellbeing and good medicine!


With gratitude,

Taran

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