The Present…

4 May 2022 | Mary Cunningham

Meditation and the other arms of Yoga have had a lasting effect on my life. I’m grateful for my friends, their gift, and the authenticity and pragmatism built into beanddo’s approach. 

I read and write poetry.  I have tried to express, below, the gift that is meditation.

I’ve recently celebrated a wedding of a friend and was privileged to have been invited to a Satak ceremony the day before the bride and groom married. 

The Satak ceremony is a set of morning prayers to Lord Ganesh to come and remove all obstacles from the bride and groom’s path and provide them with immense happiness. Five years ago, I was given a present from Sushma (the bride) and her twin sister (Sangita); a subscription to a yoga class. 

Work, at the time, was the most demanding it had ever been, both my parents were in the late stages of life, and I didn’t know that I had a cancer growing inside me. 

Making time for yoga and meditation for an hour and a half every week led to a growing sense of my ability to notice, to converse with my body in a way I hadn’t done since I was a child at play. I noticed enough to seek out a health check when I had no obvious symptoms; maybe I began to sense, maybe I paid closer attention to my own health. The meditation teaching also had a major impact on how I responded to my diagnosis and symptoms.  I remember a particularly vivid night when I could feel the chemotherapy drugs coursing through every part of my body. I was terrified and couldn’t sleep. 

Switch everything on!

I used meditation to calm my nervous system and teach my body to notice, observe and accept the chemotherapy doing its work.  I changed my relationship to the chemotherapy and learnt the strength of myself to engender a complete turnaround of experience.

Over time, I became increasingly able to listen to my body and mind in unison and reduce compulsive behaviour and other worldly anxieties.  I now have a toolkit to check in, to listen, to be kind to myself.

Meditation and the other arms of Yoga have had a lasting effect on my life. I’m grateful for my friends, their gift, and the authenticity and pragmatism built into beanddo’s approach. 

I read and write poetry.  I have tried to express, below, the gift that is meditation.