The week leading up to our two-day retreat felt like I was crawling out of my skin, as a snake does. Thoughts raced through my mind of past events that settled somatically in my heart and throat space. Something about that experience was different this time though - I didn't attribute the racing thoughts to anxiety and I didn't try to give my sadness meaning. I chose to practice gentle embodied equanimity.
2021 is the old, gnarled skin left on the path behind me. There were many solid points during 2021 that as I look back are sprouted seeds I had cultivated for eons, but I also see my deep fear looming beside them - I don't know how to handle these fragile seedlings yet. Imagine me sitting in front of them in the landscape of my sambhogakaya, wide eyed like a brand new parent who was just handed the baby. I'm not ready to move just yet, but I know my practice is working because the equanimity continues to push me to move.
Hearing Khandro-la's voice on the first day of the retreat was the reminder of the courage inside me. Maybe those moments of 2021 that sprouted into elicited survival mode were to remind me that I have done this before, that I will do this all again, and oh, because I'm here now means I was successful before too. I found that courage inside me when Khandro-la took us through meditation from empty shell to a shell filled with light shining in all ten directions. I didn't realize I was blocking the sun of my seedlings as I sat over them in fear.
Khandro-la reminded me too of the devotion I have to my yidam deity and of the faith I have in myself through the two days we all gathered together. To end the retreat was the celebration of Dakini Day with a Vajrayogini Cho Tsok, which allowed the last part of the light of purification to reach the edges of the hidden shadows within me. Since the retreat and in these last few days after, I've felt a paradigm shift of who and what I am, and what that road of discovery looks and feels like.
I found Dakini's Whisper in mid-2021 and that has profoundly changed this lifetime for me. I move forward into 2022 with confidence and courage. Many thanks to Khandro-la for her heartfelt love and devotion towards us practitioners as she walks with us down this path.