Caroline Casey often says, create ritual or live melodrama. I'm sure she says it in relation to some planetary influence but I don't remember which or why. It's just always made sense to me. I've had rituals in my life connected to spiritual practice and I've found then comforting. Usually at some point they become rote and start to feel restrictive. But there is something about performing small acts of reverence that feels like ceremony. And ceremony feels like drama is a (somewhat) controlled sense.
With that in mind I wanted to create a daily ritual once I'd settled into the nest. Seemed like a simple thing to do. I wanted to find a way to formalize my gratitude and also do yoga. But I am rarely simple.
It felt like I should start the day with my new ritual but I have to eat pretty much first thing. If I don't I get wicked stomach aches, don't want to eat and then at some point in the afternoon become insatiable. Protein works best. I eat eggs pretty much every day. In San Francisco I walked from the bed to the computer, also turned on the radio, stopped long enough to make breakfast and take it back to the computer. There were days when I didn't get dressed until noon. Now I live on a main street with a wall of floor to ceiling windows. If the light is shining a certain way and if you happen to look up it's like I live in a diorama. People really don't seem to look. And my pajamas aren't particularly revealing. I'm not overly worried about being seen. I could keep the blinds drawn if I were. But Monday through Friday I get up, take a shower and get dressed before I make breakfast. On the weekends there are some news shows on radio and television that I like so my shower comes later. I also wanted to get away from being in front of the screen all day every day. Now I eat at my table or on my butcher block and delay getting to the desk.
To be honest.
I check email and Facebook on my phone first thing every day.
And I still turn the radio on first thing with rare exception.
TV on the weekends.
These tiny little shifts in behavior are fun but they are not a formal, reverent, ritual. But OK. I get through all that and then ... a ritual. Right?
I have always wanted an I Ching. I specifically wanted someone to give me one. I took advantage of a gift certificate from Kristina to get one a few months ago. The Ching is not easy for me. It took me awhile to decide to use pennies instead of looking for special Ching coins. I had to read how to do the casting and I'm not at all sure I'm doing it correctly. Then there was Mom's visit and my trip to North Carolina and wanting to recover from all that by burying myself in a Sims coma. And finally this morning, a Monday morning, the start of a new week morning I decided to try to do my ritual.
First I shower, poach some eggs, feed Benedict, turn on the computer.
And then I toss the coins. My hexagram? Shing: Pushing Upward.
Further reading talked about success with effort. By then I was having an energy crash that I sometimes have in the late morning and I needed to lay down and close my eyes, which I find hysterical.
I had a battle with my elevator door awhile back and I lost. I ended up on the cement floor of the parking garage. I pulled myself up a few steps. The whole thing hurt my shoulders in some muscle straining way. Even small movements can be painful. This too will pass but no yoga for now.
The hexagram talks about heaping up small things and bringing small offerings. All very encouraging.Lots of "no blame." And so I will not count this morning as the beginning of a new ritual but as a small offering toward that idea.
I'll keep pushing upward but verrrrry slowly.