Here in England we have been in our version of COVID-19 lockdown for two weeks. For two weeks we have been told to stay inside and only go out to do essential shopping, essential work and exercise once a day. We have been told to retreat at the start of Spring when naturally we want to do the opposite; go outside, feel the sun on our skin and taste the newness that’s in the air.
S a p i e n ・ D o m e s t i c a t i o n
This photo above was taken in Tallinn, Estonia. I took this photo because it symbolised how I felt at the time; alone, unknowing, contracted and as if the walls of life were closing in around me. I didn’t know it at the time, but this would be the last trip me and my most recent significant other would take together. It was our start of unravelling in to something new, it was the beginning of intense contraction that was necessary for the inevitable expansion to take place.
I know this photo represents how many of us feel right now; you’ve shared, I’ve heard. All of our lives are on pause. We are in a liminal space where we have no idea how the world will look and feel on the ‘other side’ of Corona Virus. We have questions, fear and anxiety. The walls of our homes that for many of us are our safe spaces are closing in on us, constricting our physicality, leaving us feeling suffocated. I’ve been feeling the same way, missing the freedoms that I always took for granted. This is our collective sapien domestication – enclosed, tamed, trapped.
If this resonates with how you feel then you must take action. Don’t allow the walls to suffocate you and drain your blood from your soul.
I n t o ・ S p a c e . . .
Throughout this I’ve kept reminding myself that I have felt this before and have tools I can use to feel space once again, to reclaim the rooms the walls were trying to steal. Here’s one of them:
Sit. Find a space where you can be alone. Any space…a corner of a room, a shed, a wardrobe. It doesn’t need to be fancy, just somewhere you can be alone and have some privacy. Put some music on or not. Sit in a comfortable position, lie down, it doesn’t matter. It may seem like I am being blasé about the details, but sometimes we become so engrossed in them that we erect barriers that disconnect us from where we are trying to head.
Here’s the magic…get lost…get lost in the vastness of your mind…into space! Don’t count your breath, don’t repeat a chant, just dedicate some time to being alone with the spaciousness of your mind. This isn’t a doing thing, this is a being thing. With being comes happiness, messiness, being uncomfortable, wanting to laugh and or cry. You allow room for it all. Hear the story, watch the drama, reclaim the space.
Some people call this meditation, others visualisation. I call it pausing, because that’s what I do. I sit, I listen, I watch, I make space, I press pause on life. This isn’t a practice to ‘tick off’.
So sit, pause, do nothing. When we pause is this way we notice that within us is the spacious of our minds. It’s a curiosity thing…try it.