I love mutts.
I’m referring to the comic strip by Patrick O’donnell – not the dogs. Although I’m a fan of them too.
His comics tend to be so simple and yet so profound. One of my favourite combo’s.
Here is some inspiration for those difficult days. Those days where we have to dig deep to find enough strength to pick ourselves up and change the world.
Sometimes our resilience isn’t as out of reach as it seems.
I call this painting “Teenage Angst.”
I posted it on my Facebook wall the other day and received comments and emails to the likes of “That was so me in high school,” and “Wow, I dated that girl,” and “That’s a spitting image of my own teenager…”
Everyone knows Teenage Angst – many of us carry it right into adulthood.
However, as we become older and wiser, we have opportunities to become more skilled in learning how to navigate angst. Ultimately, the best way to work with it, is to stay with it.
Learning how “be” with our pain is essential to compassionate awakening. But it’s a case of the hardest thing being the best thing.
Our instinct is to run—to be anywhere but here—but “here” is where truth and freedom live.
Pema says it best:
“To stay with that shakiness—to stay with a broken heart, with a rumbling stomach, with the feeling of hopelessness and wanting to get revenge—that is the path of true awakening. Sticking with that uncertainty, getting the knack of relaxing in the midst of chaos, learning not to panic—this is the spiritual path.” ~ Pema Chodron
Learning to stay with emotion is tricky business. But with practice, it gets easier.
For me, breaking my habitual patterns has been excruciatingly difficult. But with patience and practice, it’s often possible. Here I share some of the tools that have been most helpful for me in attaining a bit of Prajna; a clear seeing of what is really happening, which is the most crucial piece when looking to break patterns.
With a focus on how to get unstuck from our shempas, and bring awareness to our habitual reactions, I also share a 4-step technique Pema Chodron has offered called the 4 R’s.
Exciting News! Begin Within has Received Sponsorship from Kobo!
I’m so pleased to announce that Kobo has offered to support Begin Within by aligning and offering sponsorship. An ebook is in the works courtesy of the Canadian built company, which will be available fall 2013.
I’m a sucker for cute yoga teachers, But this one’s by far the cutest I’ve seen.
Ok, he’s 2. But he teaches a mean class. I dare you not to fall in love.
In my most recent video blog, I discuss the challenges and importance of working towards forgiveness. I share tools and techniques that have aided in my own forgiveness practice along with resources to hopefully support your own.
Tamara Levitt discusses her perspective of repression in meditation practice. (Feel free to interchange the word, “Mindfulness” with “Meditation” for a talk that is relevant to non-meditators.)
It’s the first of the Begin Within Video Series! It’s short, sweet, and discusses the inspiration behind Begin Within. Enjoy!
Tamara Levitt visited the Kids’ section of Indigo Bay/Bloor for a story-time event on Saturday August 3 at 11:30 am. She read from her newly launched book Happiness Doesn’t Come from Headstands.
Penny Lockwood interviews Tamara on “One Writers Journey”, where she discusses her recently published book, and personal writing process.
Tell me a little about your book.
Happiness Doesn’t Come from Headstands is a picture book about a girl named leela who dreams of doing headstands. However, no matter how hard she tries, she’s unable to achieve her goal. She’s devastated by this as we usually are when faced with defeat, but through discovering that having a failure doesn’t mean that “she” is failure, she is ultimately able to find happiness.
This story offers an alternative to the “little engine that could” message that practice makes perfect and that if we just keep trying, we eventually reach a goal. The reality is, no matter how hard we try, we’re sometimes still unable to succeed in life. This book encourages cultivating self-acceptance, compassion and resilience in order to accept, learn and grow from defeat.
What gave you the idea for this particular story?
The story was in part inspired by my own struggle with perfectionism, which I’ve had since childhood and lead to a lack of self-acceptance or self-compassion. These were qualities I’ve had to learn as an adult and continue to practice as best as I can.
The beliefs we learn as children become our core beliefs as adults, so my intention through the work I create is to inspire healthy and empowering belief systems in children from the start, to help them become high functioning, happy, adults.