The Fight – Part 2 (continued)

My last post left the audience gasping as I told of a silent meditation I had entered into having asked the question, ‘What enemy is it that I must slay?’

For the full post you can visit here:

The Fight Part 2 – You’d Never Guess

In any case it ended like this,

As I sat quietly, breathing deeply and evenly, my mind began to feel spacious and I started to drift off.

I was relaxed and open.

Suddenly, out of nowhere, one word pierced the gentle ambience of my still and peaceful mind, sending shockwaves through my body.

One word!

My eyes crashed open with incredible force and my lower jaw began free falling towards the concrete floor beneath me.

One word…

‘YOGA!’

How could that be I thought. I was shocked and shaken. How could something I love so dearly be the target of my sword?

Slay yoga?

Me?

No way!

But then I thought about it. The yoga I love and the yoga I live by is not the yoga I witness today through social media and the relentless marketing campaigns of ‘yogalebrities’.

I realised a practice I believe capable of bestowing simplicity and integrity upon a world which has lost its way has been swept up and exploited in the very marketplace I felt it needed to dismantle.

But that is our world today. Anything that is beautiful and sacred and provides us with a little bit of heaven on earth is going to be exploited and violated – be it geographical, material or philosophical.

Let’s not pretend this isn’t true – no matter how well meaning our intentions.

In fact, I am reminded of a few fortunate moments I was able to spend with an experienced surfer outside an extremely popular surf destination in Australia known as Byron Bay.

His words, ‘When someone describes a place or thing as paradise it is the beginning of the end. It is paradise lost’.

He spoke these words to me 18 years ago and I have never forgotten them. Even now it feels like yesterday.

And yoga has not been spared this assault. Well, not in my opinion anyway.

So I have quite a dilemma. You see, I am a yoga teacher. Well, whatever that means these days I am not even sure.

Can a yoga teacher be a yoga teacher if the way they are living or their actions are contradictory to the philosophy itself?

These days I guess so! It would seem so anyway.

I guess how you perceive yoga and how you approach it comes down to how you define yoga. For me it is the pursuit of the truth of who we are. A path to bringing more ‘Godness’ into my behaviour.  For others it is a fitness class.

If you ‘do’ yoga once or twice per week you’re doing the fitness class. And this will make you feel good, awesome even, and is a very legitimate approach to fitness and wellbeing. Like most exercise options it will have great benefits for your overall health. You will also get to hang out with all the cool kids.

However, the yoga I practice has no beginning and it has no end.

Perhaps the following quote taken from an upcoming meditations book of mine might help –

‘Yoga, as a fitness class, cuts away fat and builds muscle. Yoga as the pursuit of truth cuts away ego and builds integrity.’ ~ Tim Guthrie

For me the fact we have ‘yogalebrities’ and ‘yoga rock stars’ is a strong indication of how effective yoga has been in eliminating ego from the world.

In fact, I reckon yoga in the developed world – if I can refer to it that way – has currently taken on the feel of a crowded shopping mall. It tries to look pretty, puts business before tradition and truth, and most of the people there have forgotten what the real purpose is behind their visit.

Now, it’s fair to say yoga’s popularity is off the scales. And everyone has the right to choose what their relationship is with ‘yoga’, that is should they want one at all, but I believe that the yoga the world needs so desperately is not the yoga we see on social media today.

I am adamant about this.

So I guess rather than fight ‘against’ an approach to yoga I do not feel aligned to or resonate with at all I have decided to fight ‘for’ an approach to yoga I believe in and love, one that I believe can bring out the best in me and the best in the world.

That is why I created Phusion Living Yoga – an extension of conditional expressionism or the action of merging the philosophies of yoga with human action outside the studio.

Let me close with another quote from my upcoming book –

There is no right or wrong, but the biggest challenge facing those who attend yoga classes is deciding whether your aim is to simply look and feel good or fully understand the truth of who you are. One is a fitness class and the other is yoga. ~  Tim Guthrie

Over to you.

I guess the only thing we all really need to worry about is that we try hard to practice what we preach. Or quit preaching and do whatever the hell we want. I think that’s called selfishness though.

Your call!

You can follow Rusty Guthrie on twitter – @RealasRusty – hope you can join him. He’s just getting started.

https://timguthrie.co/phusion-fitness/

 

 

The Fight Part 2 – You’d Never Guess

Now this may come as a surprise to those who know me from a distance but not to those who are close to me.

It certainly came as a surprise to me and I can still remember the exact moment I realised this and the feeling of wide-eyed shock I felt when it became clear.

To give this moment context, I had been spending some time at a beautiful location using it to get some clarity around the direction I was going to take my work.

I was preparing to meditate, something I have done for around 20 years, and had asked, ‘What is my fight? What is it I am meant to slay? What is my duty?’

It sounds extreme when I write those questions now but, truth be told (and that’s how Rusty rolls), I was in a hardcore place at the time when it came to philosophy. To be honest, I actually believe that sometimes an intense attitude can be quite helpful when your aim is to trim away any crap and gain clarity on an issue or situation.

Anyway, I asked those questions and positioned myself in the traditional cross-legged meditation seat, closed my eyes and began to breathe.

Very quickly, an angel appeared.

Did I get you!

Actually, no angel appeared. It was just dark. As it usually is when you close your eyes.

Back to the story.

When I went in to the meditation I had not expected any answers to come – some clues perhaps but not answers. I had committed to going through a process of discovery and was not in any rush at all.

I had time.

As I sat quietly, breathing deeply and evenly, my mind began to feel spacious and I started to drift off.

I was relaxed and open.

Suddenly, out of nowhere, one word pierced the gentle ambience of my still and peaceful mind, sending shockwaves through my body.

One word!

My eyes crashed open with incredible force and my lower jaw began free falling towards the concrete floor beneath me.

One word…

Which will be revealed tomorrow.

Got to go!

Have a great night everyone!

Love Rusty

Clare from the Ainslie Footy Club showing us some zen. Meditation when used to create space to think may have your answer.

 

 

 

The Fight Part 1 – Divine Mother Earth

When I first laid eyes on the object in the above photo I saw a polar bear, a recurring symbol in my life in recent years, and it appeared to be holding something small and black in its hands.

I wrote the following words not long after.

‘And the polar bear screams, 

an anguished howl of despair.

Her dead black baby in her hands’

Over the next few days I will be sharing some of the things I stand for in my life. For greater context you might like to read my most recent post at www.timguthrie.co

First – the planet.

I love her. She is our provider, she is our foundation and she is the giver of great beauty and unequalled wisdom. Sometimes when I sit and watch her, and listen to her I become overwhelmed and tears appear. Sometimes tears of joy. Sometimes tears of sadness.

I can’t help it.

And the polar bear? To me, she is a symbol of softness and strength. Two qualities demanded of the practitioner of conditional expression. She has also become symbolic of the destruction and devastation we are inflicting on the earth.

In the words above we see a mother. She represents all polar bears and all threatened creatures on the planet. In her hands she holds a dead black baby which represents the possible future faced by these creatures – dark and hopeless.

Unless we do something about it.

Something drastic.

Now, I am not just making noise here and writing words. Screaming ‘Save the Planet’, holding protests and pointing the finger at mining companies, in and of themselves, achieves nothing.

It is action that is important.

And it really does start with us as individuals.

I have made quite a few adjustments to my daily life – such as the 2-minute shower (less if I can manage it) and as I write this I am wearing a beanie and have a blanket over my lap. These commitments are no mean feat if you knew how cold Canberra is right now. It’s freezing!

But then again, I live alone and don’t have a family to keep healthy and warm, so I am free to live a little more simply. I’m sure there will be some changes in the future should I be blessed with a Mrs G and a couple of Rusty juniors.

At the end of the day I would like to see the planet survive and thrive.

I think the world is perfectly placed right now. The future of the planet is on the line and all of us alive today have been blessed with this opportunity to show how much we really love her.

Blaming Donald Trump won’t make a difference. What a cop out! Having someone to blame in no way diminishes the responsibility we all have to take care of our planet.

The difference will come with the quiet and humble personal commitment of more and more people to use only what they need. Whatever that may be.

I do not sit in judgement of anyone. But I am suggesting that we might all live a little differently and a little more simply in order to make a big difference. I would like the earth to to feel the same peace and harmony that we all strive to feel as humans. Currently we are both missing out on this.

So because this is a desire of mine, it brings with it responsibility. I am simply accepting that, acting on it as best as I can given the context of my life.

I sat atop a mountain recently and had a quiet conversation with the earth. I told her I would defend her and she smiled. She was very happy to have me on her side.

I guess at the end of the day, the blood I spill helping her out will be nothing compared to that spilled by her should we continue to rip her apart.

Personally, I believe the time has come for action to take precedence over preaching and blaming.

I’m trying to respect the planet! I am doing what I believe to be right!

After all, we need her and she needs us – I just reckon we could look after her a little better.

Love Rusty

Rusty hard at work live as we speak!

 

Dreams

Rachel, a friend of mine, invited me to the legendary Phoenix Bar in Civic, in Canberra, to watch a friend-of-a-friend’s band play a set of music at a multi-band gig.

Wow. Was that as hard to read and understand as it was to write?

Anyway, the person in the photo above with me is not that friend-of-a-friend.

It’s Harry Paradice.

I taught Harry when he was 12-years-old. He is 18 now and when I look at the photo I feel as though we could be brothers.

I wish.

Anyway, jokes and wishful thinking aside, Harry and I had a great chat. He reminded me that I used to teach him to play Nirvana songs during breaks at school. In terms of teaching I always thought the breaks were one of the most effective times to build powerful relationships with students.

Ah, breaks!

Once the harbinger of meaningful staff relationships and a deepening of the student-teacher connection, now the time for teachers to swallow their morning tea whole and to slam down their cup of too-hot-instant coffee, so they can crunch data and complete essential administrative tasks before the kids come screaming back in.

That’s the life!

During his band’s performance Harry put a shout out to me. I was proud and flattered, as Harry said I had encouraged him to pursue his dreams and here he was fulfilling them on stage with his friends.

Now you probably haven’t heard of Neon Highways but hearing Harry speak of dreams was quite a profound moment for me.

You see the dream is to play music. And Harry was doing it. Actually, he was doing it damn well!

Not to be famous, not to be a rock star, not to be adored and certainly not to be perfect. Although any one or all of these may result from the full expression of a musician.

In fact, I believe, it is often the hope of achieving these things or an attachment them that ends the dream in the first place. Or, perhaps it just destroys the soul that was doing the dreaming in the first place.

Harry was playing just to play and was feeling blessed to do so with his friends.

Dream of being a musician?

Play, and share it, and see what happens.

Dream of being an artist?

Paint, and share it, and see where it leads.

Dream of being anything?

Do it, share it and see what happens!

You can fulfil your dream of being something simply by doing it.

Or is it actually the adoration of others you are after and not the pure and beautiful joy felt by engaging in the activity without judgment or expectation. If that’s the case a conversation might be required between you and your ego.

Harry, I had began to attach measurements and visions of grandeur to many of my dreams. Thank you for bringing me back down to earth and reconnecting me with the true meaning of dreaming.

To anyone reading this I would ask you what your dreams are and, if you’re not pursuing them, is it because you feel the ‘size’ of the vision is out of reach?

Or do you actually have a legitimate reason?

For the record, Harry isn’t posing in that photo. The band are playing, Harry is playing, he was just down on the dance floor with his guitar rocking out with the punters. What a guy!

I expect we will all see a lot more of Neon Highways as they continue to live out the dream.

The dream of playing music.

Damn measurements and damn attachments. Always spoiling what should be the purest joy available to a human being – fulfilling our dreams.

Dream on everyone!

Love Rusty G

PS – If you are offended by the sweeping generalisation about education I apologise. I was just trying to allude to the fact that for many teachers there is more administrative tasks than they can manage without stress, anxiety and overwhelm and that this has an impact on their capacity to form meaningful relationships with colleagues and students.

Why Rusty?

The pic above is Rusty.

Sure, it’s a little blurred but it was taken back in the day.

Rusty was a spaniel and my first experience of the pet concept.

He belonged to my grandfather, Rueben Richard Walsh – or Pa as we knew him.

So Rusty is a symbol of connection. Connection to my past, connection to my future and connection to my family and ancestors.

He also represents a connection to my childhood, reminding me to celebrate that aspect of who I am as well, and to all the creatures who have ever walked, crawled, flown or swum on the earth – or will.

So the name Rusty becomes quite significant in my life when examined in this manner. And I also think Rusty is just an awesome name.

Oh yeah, and it also happens to be one of the three colours in my hair and beard. The others being brown and grey.

Real!

Now my grandfather was a good man and a legend. A hardworking man, he showed us a love of the country and a love of the simple life. He loved a quiet beer with his mates and loved a little punt. Always the top weight in the second last at Melbourne.

He also played the harmonica with passion and tipped his tea into the saucer to cool it down.

What a man!

Thanks to my incredible mother I feel very connected to my past and it has helped me make sense of my own past, present, and now, my future.

How could it be anything but Rusty?

Well, that said, it could be Dusty. Private joke there. Sorry!

Anyway, there you have it.

The story behind the legend of Rusty Guthrie.

 

 

It’s Time!

My name is Tim Guthrie and I am responsible for sharing a philosophy of integrated and loving expression at www.timguthrie.co

I think it is just what the world needs right now – perhaps because it was designed to do exactly that – meet the needs of the world as I saw them, mind you, for all of us as individuals and as a global community of shared custodians of the planet.

Might be worthing mentioning that I see the needs of the world as being very different from the wants or desires of individuals.

Anyway, my world as a teacher – of  the spiritual kind nowadays – has me working in schools (with staff members and students alike), with athletes, in yoga studios and with all sorts of people in all sorts of ways.

This is all done under the Phusion Living banner, the nickname given to a philosophy of integrated and conditional expression. I refuse to say business, because a business it is not.

But something has been missing.

Even though I am proud of my work through Phusion Living by throwing all of my eggs into that particular basket I had neglected my own expression.

It’s time to address this.

Enter Rusty Guthrie.

This space will now be the home of my personal expression. Rusty G will be the home of all of my creative pursuits and the home of the spiritual wisdom I am blessed, and quite often overwhelmed, to have had thrust upon me.

It will take the form of almost daily diary entries (you never know what might happen), some visual, some written and some auditory.

But there will be no holding back, not anymore, because it’s time things got real. If you agree with this you just might enjoy this space. If not you might find yourself coming face to face with some pretty uncomfortable questions.

All for the greater good!

See you tomorrow for a quick spiel on ‘Why Rusty’.