Awakening to independence and adulthood

“To be a truly independent adult means that the playful child in you can explore and enjoy her/himself in the safe space created by your independent self. We are aiming to create a complementary polarity between the two!”

Dear Integral Meditators,

This weeks article explores adulthood as an object of mindful attention and development. The  Wisdom of Awakening series: Meditations for ‘instant awakening’ and playful wisdom classes this week, either on Tuesday or Wednesday are on the subject of the article, so if you enjoy it do feel free to come along, live or online!

In the spirit of mindful independence,

Toby

 


Awakening to independence and adulthood

This is an article on how to mindfully stand in your own independence and sense of being adult. I want to use two quotes, the first a short story from Anthony De Mello from the book ‘One Minute Wisdom’:

“ADULTHOOD”
To a disciple who was always at his prayers the Master said, “When will you stop
leaning on God and stand on your own two feet?”
The disciple was astonished. “But you are the one who taught us to look on God as
Father!”
“When will you learn that a father isn’t someone you can lean on but someone who
rids you of your tendency to lean?”

Here are a couple of mindful points following on from the story:

  1. Am I generally co-creating with other people (or God) instead of just leaning on them?
  2. Trusting in God and trying up your camel – In the story the Master encourages the disciple away from an unhealthy dependence upon God. This doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t pray at all, it’s just the psychological approach needs to be attended to. As the camel saying implies, the ‘independent adult’ part of the deal is to tie up your camel, or take responsibility for your challenges and life-path!

The second quote is from Nathaniel Branden on parenting, from his ‘Six pillars of self-esteem’:

“The proper aim of parental nurturing is to prepare a child for independent survival as an adult. An infant begins in a condition of total dependency. If his or her upbringing is successful, the young man or woman will have evolved out of that dependency into a self-respecting and self-responsible human being who is able to respond to the challenges of life competently and enthusiastically. He or she will be “Self-supporting” – not merely financially, but intellectually and psychologically.”

Some questions for contemplation here:

  • How am I encouraging my own inner child and self toward confident adult independence in my life and relationships?
  • What areas of my life do I currently tend to become overly dependent upon others?
  • When do I tend to feel child-like in the sense of unable to organize myself in the face of my challenges?

Exploring independence and adulthood somatically
The two quotes above encourage us to explore adult independence intellectually. We then need to ground that feeling of independent adulthood into a feeling, something that we can sense in our body, a way of holding ourself in the world.
Sit comfortably, and bring your attention onto your body and breathing. Once you have settled, explore images and ideas around feeling:

  • Confident and independent
  • Competent and, in a balanced way, ‘adult’

Once you have one or two powerful images and ideas in mind, simply try and bring their energy and sensibility into your body. Try and hold yourself in these ways. Notice what happens to subtle aspects of your body posture, facial expression and sense of inhabiting your own space. Breathe, relax an let your body and cellular structure get used to the experience. In your daily life you can practice holding your body in this way, speaking and acting from this space. By doing this you can quite rapidly enhance this fundamental sense of adulthood and independence.
Final point: To be a truly independent adult means that the playful child in you can explore and enjoy her/himself in the safe space created by your independent self. We are aiming to create a complementary polarity between the two!

Related article: Self-responsibility, becoming a self-determining entity

Article & content © Toby Ouvry 2021, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


In case you missed this article last week: ‘Head in the Sun’ meditation

This is a simple meditation that combines cultivating a thought-free state with environmental awareness. Specifically, we use brain-relaxation in combination with awareness of the suns light to create the desired experience.

Finding the sun – This first stage is nice to do, and enhances the experience, but is not essential. Glance outside and locate the sun, physically in the sky. Get a sense of where it is in your current landscape. If the sun has gone down already, get a sense of where it is beneath the horizon.

Sitting in landscape – Then take a seat (this can also be done standing or lying and, when your used to it, walking) Send your awareness out to the horizon line in the landscape around you. Get a feel for the curve of the earth’s surface extending around you from your feet, the sun in the sky above, and the living planet beneath you. Breath and relax with this for a short while.
Read full article


Starts Tuesday 16/Wednesday 17th November – The Wisdom of Awakening series: Meditations for ‘instant awakening’ and playful wisdom

In a sentence: Learn the art of ‘instant awakening’ and playful wisdom through integrative meditation
Overview: The Wisdom of Awakening series is an ongoing series that looks at different ways to ‘wake up’ and live your life fully and playfully through meditation. The premise of the sessions is that inner wholeness and wisdom are not something that are far away, rather they are something that we can awaken to ‘instantly’ through certain types of mindful attention. In this four class series we take instant awakening, miraculous-ness, independence and sensitivity as our doorways to awakening….read full details


 

Life-fullness – The Integral Life-Coaching Program with Toby
 

Are you looking a coach who can help you to:

  • Meet the challenges, stress and changes that you face in a more effective and mindful way
  • Become happier within yourself, in your relationships and at work
  • Be actively accountable for finding a sense of balance/well-being in your life and fulfilling your personal potential?
  • Guide you to find and operate from a deeper sense of meaning, motivation and connectivity in your life?
Read full details

All upcoming classes and workshops at IMA:

Ongoing – Weekly Tuesday, Wednesday Online class schedule

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation for stress transformation and positive energy with Toby (Bukit Timah)

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation for stress transformation and positive energy with Toby  (East Coast)

Starts Tuesday 16/Wednesday 17th November – The Wisdom of Awakening series: Meditations for ‘instant awakening’ and playful wisdom


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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