Bondage and ignorance and limitation!
Look at me!
Look at me!
Look at me NOW!
It is fun to have fun
But you have to know how.
The enlightened sage, Dr. Seuss, in the revered text The Cat and The Hat, teaches us how to tune into our Highest Self, listen to our small, limited, fears and even invite them out to play with each other. My intention and desire is for us to value and understand this text in the highest spiritual sense. May this process lead us to a higher capacity for insight, for revelation, for learning at a deeper level, so clarity about our playful selves become possible.
Cat in the Hat begins on a cold and wet day at the house of two sad children stuck inside with nothing to do, until the Cat in a Hat shows up, transforming the dull day into an adventure. As he steps in on the mat, we can relate the action metaphorically to Yoga Sutra 1.1. Now, the teachings of yoga. As he begins to express his philosophy to the children, their pet fish begins to express his hesitation and fears. The Cat reassures him with a simple "Now! Now!" That answer is an important teaching in the whole text, because it teaches us to let go of our old social order, and enter the present, which is new. "Now" in Sanskrit is "atha", signaling the value of what you are about to dive into. "Atha" is also the first spoken word of Yoga Sutra 1.1, its entirety being~
1.1 Ātha Yogānuśāsanam The teachings of yoga, have been presented. You don't need to wait until the sun comes out, an authority figure is watching, or your fear is gone. All that it (Yoga) requires of you is a YES. In essence, then, The Cat in the Hat, just like Patanjali, tells his students to get ready to receive the knowledge on the subject of "yoga".
The fish in the tiny bowl represents our limited, concealed self known as karma mala. He is fear, limiting our ability to act. The cat is a wise trickster. He questions authority, encourages enthusiasm, seeks new experiences, while destroying our old way of thinking. He is our Big-Picture Play of Consciousness. He is our Highest Self. Highest Self is Consciousness. Highest Self is the real complete you.
Shiva Sutra 1-1 Chaitanyam ātmā. Consciousness is the self.
The children were still able to recognize, the fish's concern. Fear is natural; it's an adaptive instinct. Don't try to squelch it down or ignore it. Without fear, we wouldn't have courage. Without courage we wouldn't be brave. The Cat in the Hat was able to listen to the fish, listen to his fears, and playfully act upon them.
"Have no fear!" said the cat
"I will not let you fall
I will hold you up high..."
Introducing three Tricks to greet your Higher Consciousness (HC)...ie Cat in the Hat and Small Fish (SF) i.e Karma Mala, Fear.
Close your eyes. Breathe in through your heart and out through your third eye. Continue to follow your breath. Listen to your heart. Sometimes HC sounds like the whisper of a wise old man. Sometimes HC sounds like a voice you recognize that is playful, friendly, and compassionate.
The voice of your SF is usually scared or angry. It's probably much louder.
Invite HC to sit with you and have a conversation. Notice what HC looks like. The Cat in the Hat? Ask questions. When the answers sound wiser or more knowledgeable than usual, you're probably talking to your HC. Just keep talking to this image of your higher self until you've received the answers you need. Invite SF to the table as well. What do you see? Where in your body do you feel them? Draw your work.
The cat in the hat starts at your spine and goes up to the crown of your head and beyond! Feel your cat getting wider with each breath in and taller with each breath out.
Root your left sitting bone to your left heel and your right sitting bone to your right heel. Thing 1 begins in the lowest part of your left belly. Thing 2 resides in the lowest part of your right belly. Lift Thing 1 and Thing 2, both lowest bellies, straight up like a kite. How high can you lift these things? Can you feel the silly blue hair? Can your left and right side smile like Thing 1 and Thing 2? Most of our actions conspire to drop our things( lowest abs). The trick is to keep lifting thing one and thing two and root sitting bones to heels at the same time. The game is to not spill your energy,it must be a conscious effort to get a good thing(s) going!
A Thing is defined as some entity, object, or creature that is not or cannot be specifically designated or precisely described: anything that is or may become an object of thought: things of the spirit. (abdominal muscles and organs and bones oh my!)
things, matters; affairs: a fact, circumstance..so the trick is to LIFT Your Things! Lift your entity, being, matter, act, deed, event, material object, while keeping your sitting bones rooted to your heels. Try this in different shapes~standing, forward folds, backbends, twists, supine..Notice the difference.
Reponses received from our Grounded Kids...
"Thing 1 and Thing 2 teach me I can do it!" Ella, age 7
"My little baby tiny weeny self is in my head. My Huge, humungous ,, big giant Self is in my heart and body." Claire, age 9
"My High Cat knows I can do big things" Madeline, age 5
"My Highest Self stands up for the world. My small Fish gets angry at myself and others." Lauren, age 6
"My High Self is beautiful and colorful." Emily, age 6
"My Highest Self tells me my gift is seeing the future in my sleep." Hunter, age 7
"My Fear is in my foot. My Highest Self is upside down now. It's telling me to pay attention." Dodge, age 9
"Higher Self is standing up for myself. My Little Self is always looking around at others." Amelia, age 8
"My Fear is sliding down a pole. I see that picture (of the pole) any time I get scared." Sarah, age 9
Once you've tuned in to your HC, you'll be able to get some key information about why you're here and where you should go, and who you should go with. Your HC is watching over you and helping to steer you in the highest direction. This playful practice is for each one of us to embody the deep empowerment, the authenticity, and the fullness of who we are.
Please share how it goes. Now~ You've got to have fun, but you have to know HOW!
Tags: Dr. Seuss, Breathing, Kids Yoga, Rhyme Yoga, Sutra
In celebrating Dr. Seuss' birthday we learned how to work our feet and our hands. Just as Suess' Mr. Brown Can Moo!, Mrs. Cat can MEOW! In "Mrs. Cat Can Meow! Can You?" A Poem of Wacky, Wonderful Noises - While Clawing the Mat we allowed our inner animal out on the mat while paying close attention to our hands and feet. Are they wacky? Are they flat? Are they clawing the mat? When practicing this wacky flow while making Suesserrific noises you too will learn the importance of clawing the mat. In playing "Stop Foot, Go" (a zany spin on the all time favorite game, Musical Chairs) and studying the 4 corners of our feet we checked on our left foot and our right foot making sure they were fuzzy fur feet. While "Roaring", "split - splatting" and "meowing" along with Mrs. Cat we learned that when our four paws are aligned we feel more steady, more grounded, and in balance with the universe.Tags: No Table Yes, Do The Twist, Cat Scratch Fever, poetry, yoga flow, Dr. Seuss, Claw The Mat, Noises, Yoga with Sounds, Animals, Yoga Animals, I Am What I Am, Baby Got Back, Down Dog, Pride Plank
Often people tend to pull us into their drama. Our awareness can get overwhelmed. What if we allow them time for self-correction? What if we don't always comment about what we are critical of? What if we focus in a positive way and offer love with enthusiasm?
I invite you to practice the zip mantra (influenced by the brilliant Paul Muller-Ortega ) on your mat space as well as in your life space. Do tell us how it goes!Tags: Oompa Loompa, Mantra, Awareness, Drama, Dr. Seuss
Dr. Suess’s “The FOOT Book” is a delightful tribute to the diverse and multifaceted world of feet. In honor of his fun and quirky rhymes, I have put my best foot forward here, in a whimsical approach to show how to work your feet. When you keep your feet in line, you will stay in line. Clearly listen to your feet and discover where they tend to go. Do they turn out or in? Are they crooked? Do you tend to have low back pain or knee pain? Often this can be traced to your feet.
When you have clarity in your feet, your life will be sweet.
As Abraham Lincoln said “Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm.”