R.E.S.T. with Rashid
"It is essential, now more than ever, that we find ways to pause, grieve, and feel the fullness of reconnecting with the ritual of resting and being aware."
Just be... and breathe...
R is for Relax your attention. Release.
E is for Exhale all striving. Empty.
S is for Sense the silence. Surrender.
T is for Tune in to awareness. Trust.
Being With Everything
By Rashid Hughes
Its ok to take a moment to pause and breathe,
gathering your awareness and accepting whatever you see.
There is no right or wrong here or a particular way to be.
Simply being aware of your experience,
being with everything.
Rashid is the co-founder of the Heart Refuge Mindfulness Community, a Mindfulness Community in Washington, DC for Black, Indigenous & People of Color.
Most recently, Rashid created a contemplative practice, R.E.S.T.: A Practice for the Tired & Weary. R.E.S.T. is made up of 4 Pillars. Each pillar is an "invitation for all people to become more familiar with being completely free of the energy of striving and becoming."
Rashid's teachings encourages us all to make time to rest, abiding effortlessly, being aware and awake to beauty of being alive.
~ Arriving home, one breath at a time ~
My Journey to Mindfulness
To be honest and upfront, my journey to mindfulness came as the answer to a silent cry for peace and happiness within my heart. For many years, I studied tons of material on religion, and I even became a Christian Minister (no shade to Christian Ministers). I was on the path of "improving myself" or "becoming a better person." However, constantly trying "become a better person" eventually became exhausting. I lacked self acceptance. The more I tried to improve myself, the more feelings of isolation, judgement and emptiness deepened within my heart.
When I was first introduced to Mindfulness Meditation, I felt a huge relief. I felt like a huge burden had been lifted from my heart. There was no belief system, neither was there aggression towards any belief system. Most surprisingly, I did not have to improve myself! I could show up as myself, without the pressures of outer expectations. There were no standards that I had to meet in order to be "good". Kindness, acceptance, and compassion towards myself were the only requests.
This was the first time that I had ever allowed myself to let go of the need to improve or fix myself. I had finally given myself the permission to simply be and breathe.
Now, I practice developing an attitude of kindness towards myself and the world.
"The freedom to finally Be and Breathe,
without the pressures of being and
breathing a certain way"
Today, we live in an extremely fast pace society and world. There is always something new happening and something else that is needing our attention and energy. And to be completely transparent, most of us are really tired and overwhelmed.
Mindfulness helps us to maintain a sense of happiness and ease, in the midst of stress and difficulty. It supports our capacity to deal with distress, unexpected experiences, and difficult emotions, without becoming burned-out or fatigued. Without Mindfulness, we are like puppets, our every decision is controlled and dictated by our thoughts, emotions, and fears.
Mindfulness is a healthy way for us to get to know ourselves deeply, while also breaking unhealthy patterns that do not serve our highest aspirations, and intentionally making choices that support our wellness.