As simple and profound as OM NAMAH SHIVAYA
The spaces in between.
The creation balanced with destruction.
To have is to let go.
Many years ago, after another long sojourn to India I returned with three marks still across my forehead, throat, heart and wrists. They had been dusted onto me by the fingers of a Brahminical priest as I entered the inner sanctum of a Shiva temple. These dustings marked where our thoughts occur, our speech emanates, our hearts beat and hands push and pull have been used for so many lifetimes.
I landed home in San Francisco with the smell of the temple still upon me, still feeling the stones below me from my prostrations, the sounds of India still in my ears and the faint marking still on my “gates” reminding me of the birth, sustenance, death cycle.
The cyclical nature of life.
To this day, I still feel these marking upon me and each time I return to India or attend a puja they burn more brightly as a reminder to stay present to this cycle.
Not long after that trip, I spoke to a Brahminical friend of mine and asked if he thought it would be okay to place these markings on items that I wear—not as an outward show but as an inward reminder. He thought it was a fine idea and so it unfolded. We came together, along with a dear artist, and created items with the simple reminder of the humble journey from birth to death and the great power bestowed upon me by this very breath.
We can spend so much of our precious life energy in self doubt, shame, fear, greed, and chasing old stale thought patterns.
This simple reminder brings me back to this cycle of beginning (inhale), middle (replete with breath), and ending (exhale) and roots me into the ground of the present moment.