The power of enhancing the body-mind connection

‘The Buddha said that ‘mindfulness centred on the body leads to a happy life here and now, and to the culmination of wisdom and end of suffering.’

Julian Daizan Skinner – Practical Zen for Health, Wealth and Mindfulness

Decluttering unearths not only just how much crap has accumulated in my house, and my life, but also if I’m lucky, finds that hidden treasure I’ve been searching for. I came across this quote from my teacher, Daizan Roshi and realised with that sudden ‘aha!’ that this is what changed for me, this pivotal foundation of practising not just mindfulness and mediation, but body-centred mindfulness.

I arrived at my yoga teacher training with an injury. I’d injured my wrist trying to make my body stronger and more flexible, trying to change my body into how I felt it ought to be if I was to teach yoga. Daizan kindly informed me that we would be doing a practise that involved listening to the body, and that I could ask my wrist what it needed.

I went with this woo-woo notion because when you make the decision to train to be a Zen Yoga Teacher with a Zen Master, you’ve got to arrive open-minded, or you’ll spend too much time open-mouthed.

This learning to tune into my body and listen, with kindness and curiosity, has quite literally changed my life. I have been able to move out of the cycle of stress, overwhelm and exhaustion, frustrated at being unable to live my life fully, to make the most of my time here – and create, connect, experience, love, dance, laugh and do something meaningful, something that helps heal the world in my own unique way, offer my contribution to the conversation.

So, thank you Daizan. Thank you for everything you do. You make such a difference.

Curious? Come along to a Zen Yoga class or workshop, take an online course.

Read ‘Practical Zen‘ by Julia Daizan Skinner or check out Zenways for retreats and the opportunities to practise at the Dojo in London.