Meet Cynthia LaRoche
MEET THE MUSE: Cynthia LaRoche – friend, wife, teacher, learner and our very own mindful muse.
What two words best describe you?
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Alignment with your soul.
What is the trait you are most grateful for in yourself?
The desire to be organized.
What is the trait you most cherish in others?
What breaks your heart?
What is your current state of mind?
If you could inspire one change in yourself, what would it be?
To be softer.
If you could inspire one change in the world, what would it be?
To be softer.
Where do you look for inspiration in your daily life?
Everywhere – music, pop culture, yoga philosophy, nature, interactions with others.
What do you want to be remembered for?
That I loved too much.
Tell us about your work.
I teach meditation and yoga.
What/who inspired your work?
All of the teachers who have tread the path before me and the students who show up every day.
What are the challenges you face with your work?
Personally I’m searching for where my work will make the most difference, what comes next beyond the classroom setting.
What do you love most about your work?
Watching the philosophy being expressed through the body.
How can we support your work?
Thanks for asking me to write a meditation.
Because this is our “Back to School” Issue:
Who are your greatest teachers?
There are so many but Rolf Gates and Jerome Smith from the Himalayan Institute have had a profound effect on the teacher I am today.
What has been your most difficult lesson?
Being OK with not knowing.
What are you learning right now?
How to be softer with myself, love bigger, allowing my sweetness.
Would you please share a meditation with us?
We tend to think of the act of sitting/being still/or meditation, whatever you choose to call it, to be so daunting, so out of reach, so beyond our capabilities. Despite the benefits we know we will reap from it, the news articles that tell us it is good for our brain and the fact that we actually crave the idea of it, we still don’t seem to find the time to fit it in. But if not now, then when? These are the days of our lives, today is the only day that really matters and just as we celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and vacations why not celebrate the gift of this day? I find it helpful to begin by finding a space in your house that you can dedicate to your meditation practice. Whether it’s a section of your bedroom, a corner of your living room, a favorite chair that allows you to sit upright or a favorite spot in your garden, dedicate it as your spot to experience peace and stillness. Place some items on a tiny table or on a rug in your new sanctuary, candles, photos, quotes can be hung on the wall, anything that makes you feel content, grateful, inspired and at ease. You may choose to have a meditation outfit, a sweater you love or socks that are cozy and warm, the piece, that when it’s worn, signifies that it is your special time to be still. Having this area or these items helps create a ritual around your time to sit. It becomes special and unique rather than another thing to check off your to do list.
You’ve got on your favorite scarf, the candles are lit, now what? The most profound breakthrough I had on the meditation cushion was the time I decided to show up exactly as I was in the moment without expectation or agenda. Being someone that likes to “get it right” meditation can be an incredibly frustrating thing, my mind wanders and I think “I’m are doing it wrong”, the noise in the next room distracts me and I get annoyed, my to do list is wringing in my head and I think “I don’t have time for this”. So I chose one day to just show up. I set my timer for the desired amount of time, I sat, and I let that be enough. It was permission to be who I was, it was an invitation into my mind; sometimes scary, often funny, but mostly sweet and soft. I simply sat and watched my breath, some days I held my coffee in my hand and stared at the sunrise, there’s not a meditation book around that will give you that advice but it was ok, it was my time for me, however brief, to simply sit. I invite you to do the same. To set a timer and sit. Watch your breath, watch your mind, watch the sunrise. But
become curious about the person who is doing the watching. Know without hesitation or debate that housed in this physical body (watch it be comfortable or resistant), beyond the thoughts (watch them come and go), amongst the personality (know it without attachment or control), full of emotions (let them all come up and feel where they live in the body), that you are a sweet soul, a beautiful spirit, a loving light; give her permission to sit imperfectly, to enjoy her time of stillness.
Thank you for the inspiration and the meditation. xo, muse.
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