Presence in All Three Centers: Self-Observation, Compassion, and Practice

You were born with vast capacity for wisdom, creativity, power, and love. One way to unfold the full potential of that capacity is to bring greater intention and consciousness to the true nature of your Body, Heart, and Head, which the Enneagram describes as the three Centers of intelligence. Although there are a myriad of approaches to the working with the centers, three overarching principles – Self-Observation, Compassion, and Practice – can serve as guides to the ongoing cultivation of presence in each center.

Self-Observation (the Head Center)

“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and … READ MORE

Are You Ready To Open Into Your Embodiment?

In 2006, I was enrolled in a year-long yoga teacher training with Vishali Varga.

One weekend, we spent an entire day focused on observing downward-facing dog in each trainee. We discovered a range of ways that bodies can inhabit this basic yoga pose, and we learned to give different types of instructions about how to come into better alignment.

When it was my turn to be observed and coached, Vishali said:

“She has so much access to movement that she … READ MORE

Leaning Into the Fault Line: A Love Letter to Inverness

“Boundaries limit and divide.They mark where one thing ends and another begins. Boundaries are also places of dynamic change…The San Andreas Fault is such a boundary, the division between two great tectonic plates: the Pacific Plate and the North American Plate.”

From the National Park Service, describing the geological underpinnings of the Point Reyes National Seashore

the San Andreas Fault

For the second year in a row, I visited Limantour Beach on the afternoon of my last day in Inverness. Many … READ MORE

Cultivating Ground in a Time of Disorientation

adam(ah), watercolor and ink on Arches coldpress

Cultivating inner freedom is an important aim of transformational work. In 1941, social psychologist and humanistic philosopher Erich Fromm wrote about the choice that humans can make to “unite…with the world in the spontaneity of love and productive work or else to seek a kind of security by such ties with the world as destroy…freedom and the integrity of…individual self.” Difficult times create the conditions where we can consciously work to make such choices, and also have the potential to overwhelm us.

May each and all of us keep our connection to joy, freedom, … READ MORE

Receiving The Future

The Bhagavad Gita

How does the future come to be?

Do we plan for it, or is the future planning us in ways we may not always understand?

One of my favorite takes in this territory is found within a classic Indian text called the Bhagavad Gita. The story begins with Arjuna having a breakdown at the beginning of a massive battle in which he has friends and relatives on both sides. Although being a warrior is his dharma, Arjuna falls into doubt, confusion, fear, and … READ MORE

Balancing Your Practice For Strength, Resilience, Creativity, and Freedom

A fundamental skill for being present is increasing your capacity to be with the sensations of your body. One of the gifts of studying the Enneagram is the recognition that although everyone needs to develop presence, each of us is starting from a different place depending on our type, instinctual stack, and life experiences.

So what’s the best way to go about practicing to be more present? It depends.

When you know the Enneagram, you know that:

Some Enneagram types more easily gravitate toward structure and discipline while other types more easily gravitate toward movement … READ MORE