trusting gravity

highway_5_blossoms.jpg
pink blossoms on Highway 5,Canon Digital Rebel

As I sat in a meditation pose yesterday at the beginning of yoga class, I imagined I was sitting at the edge of a cliff, a big sky in front of me, lots of green mountains and a deep valley. In my vision, I peeked over the edge of the cliff and I got that strange vertigo feeling, you know the one where you look over the railing on the top of a building and you are afraid you might jump? I got that woozy feeling in my belly, as I looked over the cliff in my vision. What if I jump or fall?

And then a voice inside me said, “Just trust gravity.”

I sat there trying to understand that, and in my body I got it. I am here, I am sitting down, I am safe. Gravity is holding me here. There is no reason why I would ever jump or even fall. Gravity is my friend.

And then I saw the extent to which I live in a state of anxiety all the time. Whatever this metaphorical gravity is, I am not accustomed to trusting it.

…….

There is a teaching in buddhism that I have always been enamored with and it says, “There is never anything wrong in the moment.” I love that teaching so much that I test it out on myself all the time. I stop whatever I’m doing, get really present and ask, “Is there anything wrong here?” And really, there never is. There is just a moment. Me and a moment.

And maybe that’s the gravity I am talking about. That inevitable pull back to the moment, back to the core of myself, back to what I know is true. Back to what is. Not my fear, but what is.

Back to the place where there is nothing wrong.

Follow on Facebook Follow on Instagram Follow on Twitter Follow on Pinterest

Hi, I’m Andrea

On this blog you’ll be learning with me how to use our voices, share our creative superpowers and live life in full color.

As an artist, photographer, life coach + mentor, I’m redefining what it means to be a SUPERHERO — ‘cause in my world, it’s got nothing to do with capes, spandex or sidekicks and everything to do with tenderness, intuition & baby steps of bravery.

LEARN MORE ABOUT ME >

35 Comments

  1. Christine

    Andrea,
    Thank you so much for your wisdom and insight, and for helping me see that whatever happens is the way it should be. I’m glad I’m not the only one who looks over a railing and gets the cazy feeling that if I don’t hold back I might just do it and jump. Keep writing and inspiring!
    Christine

  2. liz elayne

    These momemnts in the quiet that have so much to teach us. Thank you for sharing yours here.
    This Buddhist teaching…”is there anything wrong here?” Oh this is huge. What a wonderful practice. Pulling you back to who you are. Beautiful.

  3. bohemiangirl

    hmmm…this is good, really good.
    i thought deeper about the word “wrong” after reading this. that word suggests that there is a “right” way to be or say or act…but who determines these right ways? what constitutes something as wrong?
    i like thinking that nothing is wrong…it just is. it’s a moment.
    this makes it more quiet. less threatening. a bit refreshing and releasing…doesn’t it?
    thank you for being you. love you, sister.

  4. Tongue in Cheek Antiques

    it reminds me of another quote I read today
    Trust joy.
    Why are we fearful to believe life is good and calls us to enjoy?

  5. Leonie

    thank you for sharing this deep insight.
    and i have a feeling about your vision being significant.

  6. Alison

    A Buddhist Monk, Thich Nhat Hanh teach of “Present Moment, Wonderful Moment.” Here’s a verse from his book of the same title.
    Waking Up
    Waking up this morning, I smile.
    Twenty-four brand new hours are before me.
    I vow to live fully in each moment
    and look at all beings with eyes of compassion.

  7. snowdrop

    but what happens if you sit in the moment and it is still wrong? what if your stomach flips over even when you try to lean back into the present?

  8. Felicity

    I love this post, too. I’m a lazy zen practitioner and my favorite reference is Monkey Mind…I’m glad to have something else to think about, at least for the moment!
    Love you.

  9. soren

    my phrase for this, which i repeat over and over when I am feeling unsafe, is “it is already ok”.
    the things you said are like 75% of my therapist’s advice… always focus on being in the present moment. if it’s hard, do it through your senses – what are you hearing, seeing, feeling… the practice of mindfulness.
    but your writing of it is beautiful. thank you.

  10. penelope

    Love this. 🙂

  11. Kerstin

    Andrea,
    You never strike me as someone who lives in anxiety all the time; I have visions of you leading this creative, balanced and peaceful life where anxieties are rare.
    I think I know the feeling where your body and/or mind “gets something”, it is quite powerful, isn’t it? Sadly I seem to lose it again after a few days, in a strange way it is so much easier to stick with my anxieties, they have been a steady and reliable companion for so long, there is an odd sense of safety staying within their realm. However, that doesn’t make me feel safe in the world and I know that I have to learn to accept that this is not a safe world to begin with and that any sense of peace and calm must come from within me. Easier said than done.
    Take care, Kerstin

  12. Laura

    Oooh, I am also in a state of anxiety all the time. It makes me worry about having children, will it get worse, will I be able to take it, will I be able to stand it? I don’t know. It worries me. I do know that I’m going to try your visualization for myself and see what it says to me. Mindfulness is a good word to draw out and put someplace prominent.

  13. españa

    Thank-you! I just finished reeading “The River Why” by David James Duncan. In it, there is a long-haired candle maker named Steve. Whenever something happens, be it upsetting or only minorly so, he says “How it is” and keeps going along. That prase stuck with me, and then made the book “The Way It Is” by Ajahn Sumedho jump out at me in the library yesterday. He writes, “Everything that arises passes away.” How it is.

  14. jennifer

    I just want to add that your last two photos–the big sweeps of sky–are so meltingly beautiful–I would love to have them large on my wall!

  15. Kat

    Hi, Andrea. Thanks for this. I can relate to your experience 100%. I love my yoga practice so much it has saved my sanity many times. With 3 kids running, chatting, laughing, fighting all over and around, above and below me almost all day long, it is truly a life-saver. Anxiety, tell me about it! A long time fan, Kat

  16. Feisty

    Thank you so much for this, Andrea. I needed this, especially your favorite buddhist teaching, SO much.

  17. chrissy

    everything that happens is good luck.
    this is what i heard marianne williamson say once, to say this as amantra in your head. take every single thing that happens as a sign of good things to come, as an oment that good things are happening and working out. i say it to myself often…everything that happens is good luck.
    e v e r y t h i n g
    t h a t
    h a p p e n s
    i s
    g o o d
    l u c k.

  18. melanie

    not only do i find your words so thought-provoking and inspirational, but i also enjoy the comments of others here. so much greatness here!

  19. Rachel Carrales

    I’m so often riddled with anxieties, but they’re almost always about the future. When I get a PhD (in six years) will I get a job? If I get a job, will I get tenure? Will I be overworked, and will my life be under-lived?
    My anxieties go on and on. I guess I have to focus on the future, and all the terrible things that could happen because the “right now” is always pretty okay. You are an angel, Andrea! Thank you for your insights.
    –Rachel

  20. Alessandra

    Oh! Andrea! You’re such a sweet deep inspiring woman leading such specials kindred spirits here. I’m learning so much from you and from the comments posted in your blog. Your words are as recharging as taking a deep breath. Thank you for creating this place of wisdom and calm.
    Alex

  21. Debbie

    Andrea,
    My friend introduced me to your blog (hello blog) and I just wanted to share with you how touched and moved I am by so many of your posts. It is encouraging and comforting to know that across thousand of miles and multiple states there is someone who views life in a similar way, cares about being kind, loves to play, embraces all the precious gifts life has to offer and sees in every moment of every day the beauty and wonder that surrounds us. My gratitude and appreciation also goes out to those wonderful souls who post on your blog … it makes my heart smile to know you all exist.
    With love and gratitude.

  22. blackbird

    I know that gravity-feeling moment…
    but I did not know the buddhist teaching about the moment, and today, I really needed that information.
    thank you.
    thank you for reminding me that there is never anything wrong in the moment.

  23. angela

    oh these words. i’m holding them close with their own gravity right now.
    and oh this photograph.
    i can hardly wait to see the rest of these.
    at the moment, this series looks like it could be the start of a beautiful new photographic exhibit.
    loves to you andrea.

  24. Sara

    I always lurk on your blog….love it to pieces! Great post, as they all are. I agree with someone above who said that they couldn’t imagine you having anxiety! You seem so balanced and calm! I, on the other hand, am a bundle of anxiety…always worried about loss. I am fearful every single day that something will happen to someone I love. No matter how many times I try to tell myself that God is in control–I find myself bearing the weight of the world on my shoulders. I am aware that I don’t always FULLY enjoy the moments that I should because of my anxiety. As someone mentioned above, I am also worried about having children–it’s getting about that time–and I am unsure of how I’ll be able to handle it.
    Anywho…I have rambled long enough! Thanks for sharing your lovely thoughts with all of us. I certainly enjoy your wisdom. BTW, I am a teacher of elementary kids with learning differences. I shared with all of the teachers the video clip that you linked about the utistic boy who made 6 3-pointers–it made their day! We had all heard about it but no one had seen the video..and I am no where near savvy enought to link a video!!
    Sara
    http://www.tommyandsara.blogspot.com

  25. muck

    beautiful!! i have the same issue: anxiety. whenever i feel getting all worked up, i step back and ask myself if it’s worth it. i’ve also learned not to fight against it – be with it in the moment and let it pass.
    still, i know it’s not that easy – you and i and everyone else who have the same issue are absolutely OK.
    and yes, yoga is the best medication!! i just got a new yoga dvd so i will hit the mat today.
    all the best, xo

  26. jack

    my goodness.
    this is simply wonderful, andrea.

  27. G-Man

    I always joke that it’s not so much the gravity holding me down as much as the sky is holding me back from floating up.

  28. Cassia Zoe

    I serendipitously found Superhero Journal when doing a Google image search for Chihuahuas. That brought me to March 2004 and a host of wonderful entries. Without being too verbose, I want to tell you that I love this site. I feel like I took a sort of computerized miracle walk and the miracle I found was you and your journal with your unabashed creativity and tender views. Thank you and God for bringing me to your site. There’s a quote from the Talmud that says, “Every blade of grass has an angel leaning over it whispering, ‘grow, grow.'” I heard that whisper today.

  29. Julia

    Your thoughts today are so profound. How much easier it is for me to hold on to my anxiety and feel as if I am falling, or about to fly into pieces. For anxiety is what’s been so familiar to me for such a long while. You brought me out of my worry centered state by sharing this beautiful teaching of Buddhism. I thought about what was being said here for some time, and it is so right! In this moment there IS nothing wrong!! Now if I can only keep applying this thinking to the next moment, and the next….. thanks for your inspiration.

  30. Kate

    I…needed…that. Bless you for your words.

  31. Aithbhreac

    Gorgeous photos! And just wanted to thank you for introducing me to the Weepies. GREAT music!

  32. paul merrill

    sorry, but sometimes the moment IS wrong… like when you walk in on someoone committing a crime.
    i had to fire one of my staff yesterday due to his defrauding the company. there were lots of wrong moments associated with that whole situation.

  33. DeAnna Daniels

    Everyone keeps talking about yoga videos. Can anyone recommend a few of them to me. I have several and I an not too happy with them. I would love to know which ones are your favorites.
    I love this blob, it sotra grabs me and centers me when I need it. Thanks!
    I can’t wait for my visit to San Fran this year-20 more days!

Ready for your next creative adventure?

Download the Mondo Beyondo dream generator!

Latest from the blog

Some of the best books I’ve read this year.

Some of the best books I’ve read this year.

  Some of the best books I've read this year The Language of Emotions: What Your Feelings Are Trying to Tell You by Karla McLaren This book travels through a whole vocabulary of emotions and truly celebrates them - showing you that each one (even the so-called...

read more
CSP #48: The Language of Emotions with Karla McLaren

CSP #48: The Language of Emotions with Karla McLaren

Karla McLaren, M.Ed. is an award-winning author, social science researcher, and empathy pioneer. Her lifelong work focuses on her grand unified theory of emotions, which revalues even the most “negative” emotions and opens startling new pathways into self-awareness,...

read more

Ready to add color to your life?
JOIN OVER 5,000 INSPIRED GRADUATES IN AN ECOURSE

Camp Wonder-Seeker

30 days of ease, joy and cultivating wonder

Creative prompts, stories and secret missions that will bring you help you wake up your creativity, invite you to see the world in an entirely different way + celebrate ordinary beauty and magic.

Capture the Magic

Rock your camera-phone - and discover that beauty and joy are everywhere.

The very best camera is the one that’s with you! I’ll show you how to get on your own path of joy and delight while learning photography skills along the way.

Brave Blogging

30-days of breathing life & inspiration into your blog

Blogging is still the best way to grow your audience and find your tribe, while connecting to your voice and your spirit!

VIEW MORE COURSES