This morning I'm fully in harness - preparing for the teacher training which begins tomorrow. Part of my work is that I do a lot of "hospitality facilitation" - keeping track of who is staying where and who needs rides etc. The practice of hospitality - as a Practice - is alive and well in our Coeur d'Alene Kula. Thank you Ed and Olive and Patty and Jessica and Beth and Brandi - for hosting students from out of town. "Hospitality is the sign of an outrageously generous heart" ~anon
I was reflecting this morning as I work, that something that has changed for me, over the years of teaching, is that (finally ) I stay a lot more relaxed. And I don't forsake myself. For example, this morning I did my own practice. I made kicharee and beet greens for my meal later. I did abhyanga . And I'm indulging in writing a post right this minute. In prior years I probably would have sat tensely at the computer, working with my notes. I still managed to teach well - the tension didn't choke off the flow of Grace - but it probably diminished it considerably.
The image that came to me this morning is really an "open to Grace" image for teaching. It's the image of a water spigot. Like any experienced teacher, I've gotten really good at turning on the spigot and once I do, Grace flows - currently it's flowing in the form of teacher-training-teaching and inspiration. It took me years to learn how to work the spigot, and more years to increase its capacity, and more years to trust that the spigot will always be there to turn on.
The fashioning of the spigot and the increasing of its capacity has been an important phase of my own development as a teacher and as a practitioner. The teachers that are beginning teacher training tomorrow will be working a lot on that. It's a long process that does not end. I'm still at it although it was much more involved earlier on. Much more involved. Sundari and I were talking about how we sometimes get calls from students who are "shopping" for a teacher training certificate the first question they ask is "how long will it take and how much will it cost?" I generally give a business-like answer but my wicked-wise self sometimes want to say "It will cost you everything and it will take forever". Sundari and I figured that we have spent tens of thousands of dollars on our own teacher training. More than tens of thousands. Everything. But - like I said - I generally give a business-like answer.
I am more aware than ever - that taking care of myself is taking care of the water spigot. And staying relaxed and open is allowing Grace and inspiration and intelligence to flow through me.
So - I'm off to teach Tuesday classes. Julie Rae and Cami - from Montana - are already here so I get to have them weave into Tuesday. Fun.