By Jenny Smith
My life is so quiet these days that I can often hear the sound of my own heartbeat. I never imagined I would be so grateful to be that still.
I have always had an incredible amount of energy running through my body. I have spent most of my life trying to figure out how to dispel it and get rid of the anxiety it produced. I did power Yoga and fast-paced exercise, and jumped into musical theatre, where I projected my energy outward by singing, dancing and acting. I thought that if I maintained a life of “go, go, go” I would be able to outrun the feeling that I could never sit still.
When I came to Hale Pule to farm on Durga Farms, it was the first time in my life that I have ever been asked to just be with my energy without distractions. People are not glued to their phones here, and we don’t use them until after morning practices are complete. When we work on the farm, we are asked to be present with the plants by not listening to whatever distraction can come from our headphones. These guidelines have forced me to meet myself in a way nothing else ever has. And that meeting has made me realize that all my movement did not release the built up energy; it only created disconnection from it.
By focusing my attention inward and not away, I am finally beginning to feel that the body I am in is my home.
Learning Ayurvedic treatments
I had always been interested in training in massage or bodywork, but I felt great anxiety about sitting still for long enough to study. My time on Durga Farms calmed me and I began to see that when I work with the energy in my body in the right way, it is a gift, not a burden. I attended Hale Pule’s Ayurvedic treatment training last August and have continued to apprentice by doing treatments for Hale Pule guests and students.
The training taught us much more than the techniques of Ayurvedic treatments. We learned that the most important thing we can do while working with a client is to manage our own energy. We practiced powerful techniques to do this, and I’ve since used them in treatments and my daily life. I see the results with every client. When I am grounded and neutral, I can create a space for transformational healing.
It’s beautiful to see the physical changes in clients after a treatment, and even more so knowing that it goes much deeper than that. I feel so grateful that I have learned to properly direct the energy that is naturally within me to be of service to another’s healing.
Letting go to grow
We all hold on to things that we think keep us safe. In the Ayurvedic treatment training, I was asked to go deep and honestly find out if these things are making me happy. And when I let go, I expand into a version of me I didn’t know was available. That expansion can be frightening at first, but I’d much rather go there than hang on to the things that created all the anxiety that used to be part of my daily life.
Discomfort came up during this process of letting go, but the Intuitive Energy Practice tools we were taught and the Ayurvedic lifestyle we followed during the training taught us to experience what comes and release it with neutrality. These tools have allowed me to create connection with the people on the table in a healthy way and to stop and feel what is going on inside of me at every moment. Because of this experience, I see the value of being in this body and have stopped using everything in my life to try to get out of it. I am no longer orphaned from myself and from the world around.
I have such gratitude for the people at Hale Pule who are willing to step into the unknown and share the teachings in such a pure and genuine way. Each time I feel my heart beating – a sign of that healing flow of energy that heals and is being healed – I am filled with joy to know that I am alive and that I am home.
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