Sunday, February 21, 2010

Barefoot Earth Drumming....Addendum....

Part 1 of "Barefoot Earth Drumming" created quite a stir!
And it also got my wheels of thought turning too....

A few things that I didn't mention in Part 1:

Soft Walking
I have noticed when I am walking barefoot (which is mot of the time!) I walk more softly. You can't be slamming your feet with wanton abandon into the pavement, and so you tread more lightly upon this earth...and what better metaphor for a life of conservation and charity could there be!
So many concepts are framed in words and then the real context of those words is quickly forgotten. The feeling that we have in the 'pit of our stomach' is really in the pit of our stomach! Being grounded really does mean being in contact (and connection) with our mother Earth...and walking softly is something that we do physically and philosophically, and just as mind and body cannot be separated neither can the morphology of words with society, culture and action...

Mindful Walking
In Chapter 4 of Choosing You! I mention several 'active' mindfulness meditations. One of which is mindful walking, an ancient practice. Walking barefoot to my mind is that much more mindful! You are aware of the sensation of your feet carrying you forward and of the texture and the tiny undulations of the Earth. You become immersed in walking, often to the point that Cliff ceases to exist and there is simply the 'flow of walking'!

As well as becoming more mindful of the act of walking, and the feelings and sensations associated with that, in walking barefoot we are also forced to be more aware of our surroundings. We pick a path more appropriately, avoiding sharp objects and pitfalls. I have noticed that in a very real and primal way this 'wakes me up' and allows a sense of calm attention and focus which so often in our world of alternating sensory deprivation and overstimulation is lacking...

I was stopped by a man yesterday who was taken aback by the fact that I was walking barefoot and was fascinated by my explanation of the potential total health benefits of it. He had obviously never thought of doing this as a physical practice and even less as a spiritual one. He left me with the parting words "Well good luck to you young man - perhaps this will catch on..."
To which I replied "You know what? I hope it will!"

What do you think?
Will it catch on?
Do you think that you might be prepared to beat the Earth drum?
Let me know your comments, concerns and feel free to share your experiences!

I'm sure there will be more to come....

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