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Clearing to make space

Sometimes you have to clear something to invite in something new. This happened to me in a powerful way this week. I want to share the process, but also the results of my decision since it may impact some new yoga friends who have been at yoga for recent pop-up events.

A few events culminated over this week resulting in shift in plan that will impact my business. To make space for a call back to sewing practice and a call to join the Meditation course with Andrea on the last day of sign up, Belly Hazen Apothecary will take a Pop-up sabbatical for the remaining half of 2021. I will stock shelves and still provide products by request, but I’ll respond to those through the website, calls or by e-mail. I’ll still gratefully use the studio adrop-off point, arranging for pick-up or delivery on an individual basis. Belly Hazen will still have a variety of ferments (cabbages are almost ready for picking), ghee, spice mixes and drinks. Announcement about anything else I make in bulk (such as garden and herbal pestos or healthy sweet treats) will be posted on FaceBook and updated on the website under Products. You’d be wise to follow me in both places to stay connected. From there, you’ll know what will be found in the studio or to make purchase requests. Regular customers can assume we’ll just continue as we had, and of course anyone wanting to become regular can make that arrangement with me.

You might be interested in this chain of events:

Monday, my actual birthday, I had a conversation with Andrea and learned more about her meditation program. Invited to lay on the grass as a gift to myself on the busy day, I listened to her talk about the meditation program. As always I was drawn, because I don’t want to miss the opportunity to grow open alongside her. I listened to myself share what restricted me from participating in the meditation program and the hopes that the shorter Chakra program would serve my needs. I watched my limited Mind and articulated some of it… ‘I have my meditation path’ ‘I know how to still my mind and start every day doing so’ and ‘My schedule is already overly full leaving no room to participate fully and juggling one more thing might be the straw that breaks the camel’s back’. Looking up at the passing clouds where I often find Taihaku I remember a dream I’d had a couple nights prior to this moment on the phone with Andrea. My dream was of me in relationship with Andrea as my main teacher. It was a dream that seemed to come not out of any need for a new search for a new dharma teacher or pondering any particular decision about the course, but perhaps just an acknowledgment of the power of her gifts that helped lead me to wholeness and healing over the past 9 years. There, on my back, in front of my house, we ended our call with an expression of our deep respect and trust and somewhat of an open end to my decision.

Thursday, after the end of a 49 day silent period honoring my Zen teacher after her sudden passing, I met with the Acting-Abbott to discuss what’s ahead in my role as sewing teacher. During the pandemic, Shao Shan Temple stepped up programs over Zoom and practice deepened for many old and new participants. After the death of the temple’s founder and Abbott, the sangha’s connection grew, each person found their way to stepping in to support stronger practice and the temple’s increased needs after such a loss. Three individuals decided to take their vows (comparable to the Yamas and Niyamas in Yoga) and they will sew their small robes (Rakasu) with me this fall. Also Kenzan will need a special robe as he steps into the new role as Abbott. Without even thinking about it I offered to make this for him as an extension of my sewing practice. Both of these undertakings would involve many hours, which I don’t have in my schedule as it is set up right now. The question did arise — how will I make the space? I didn’t have the answer, just realized the question was there.

Friday morning - monthly pop-up day, the culmination of a week of preparation for a small event where I decided to share my gifts with the Heartspace Yoga Community. The circle of giving feels complete when another receives and benefits so I wanted to make July a celebration, of our-selves and our shared movement toward health and wellness — especially when it might include a healthy chocolate treat! In addition to sharing what I love, the pop-ups are an opportunity for creativity and an extra dose of delight. But still, the prep week always creates some level of stress. My Mind already had expanded to include the heightened garden tasking and an up-leveled food-focused life style. At pop-up week , Mind and body have to make space for MORE… decisions, creating even more food, posting, packaging, labeling, packing up and getting out the door. Once I get to class I sigh and let go. On this day I again felt full and in alignment. I delight in the connections with this other Sangha — the Kula/circle.

Saturday, driving home from morning practice (on-site practice again at the temple). I awaken to a clarity that I hadn’t been felt over the past months of the quarter. I’d been following a structure that was working, but also barely holding together at times. I hadn’t been able to see what could be eliminated to create space and a little more ease. I wasn’t directly looking for decisive action. It was a beautiful morning and everything had dropped away in the moment. Instead was just BEING. Like clouds opening in an overcast sky, A WAY opened and this business decision arrived in my Mind with the sharpness of an arrow. Clearing this one aspect of Belly Hazen might free me to take a deeper dive into meditation under Andrea’s guidance. And this fluid and potentially more playful meditative path help me incorporate meditation through the day that will serve me in discerning what needs to go and what needs to stay for the remainder of the year to hold a new focus. Andrea’s mediation of the past always guided me inward, and I trust and am curious to know what’s newly been created for us to shine as she does.

Sunday I commit, and I share that commitment. I imagine each of you have examples of a similar synchronicity of life events that impacted an important decision and I thank you for learning more about mine. I hope to still serve you with healing food, drink, celebration and inspiration and perhaps I will be joining you for weeks ahead of something possibly Mind-blowing and ground-breaking as we discover the potential of our Minds.

Please share whatever is your intention or on your mind personally by e-mail, by phone or in person and link up with me so you see what the rest of 2021 brings for Belly Hazen, you and me.




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