The other day, I was walking in downtown. It was cold and I was hurrying. My head was down as I passed people on the busy streets. As I waited at the corner for the light to change, I saw a mom holding her son’s hand. He was about five years old. The gentle way she held his hand and regarded him was such a stark contrast to the cold weather and the harshness of the city. Instantly, I felt a warmth cascading my heart. I watched them cross the street together, side-by-side, mom gently guiding her son, not dragging him along. There was a sacred synergy between them. In this one glimpse of hand-holding and street-crossing, I could see many moments of gentleness and regard that had come before this moment.
After we crossed the street, I went my own way and I noticed that I wasn’t as cold. My head was now up, my chest expansive and open. I felt lighter, connected to the Divine. I breathed in the holiness right there in the middle of crowded streets filled with people, noises, street signs, and store fronts. This was holy ground.
When I think of sacred space, I think of holy ground – a space where we feel nourished and connected to something bigger than ourselves. There are many beautiful places in the world that we only have to see a picture of and we exhale and we feel connected. We can think that we have to “go somewhere” to find sacred space, to be on holy ground. And while there is a time for pilgrimage and traveling to these sacred places, what about the “everydayness” of our lives?
Can we cultivate sacred space wherever we are? Can anywhere be “holy ground”? Can we BE sacred space wherever we are?
I believe the answer is YES.
CREATING Sacred Space wherever we are. Sometimes in order for us to discover the sacred space within ourselves, we need to start by creating sacred space in our environments. Choose from the plethora of books out there right now about decluttering, but just start! Whatever decluttering system you choose, set the intention that this spring, you will go through your whole home. This most simple advice: surround yourself with what makes your soul smile.
- In our MBC workshop this month, we’ll talk about creating a particular space in your house that nourishes you.
FINDING holy ground in the everyday. There are moments in the ordinariness of our day that can be times of standing on holy ground. Yet we have to pause, look up and have our eyes and heart open to seeing clearly.
- In our MBC workshop this month, we’ll explore a practice for having the eyes and heart to see the holy right here in our everyday lives.
BEING sacred space. We could spend our lives focused on decluttering our homes, offices, and cars. The purpose of clearing out our living and working space is to create peaceful and nourishing spaces that inspire us to go inward – into our own hearts. WE can be sacred space. Imagine your inner landscape being sacred space. Imagine gently walking the terrain within you – slowly reverencing and honoring the landscape (all the “parts” within you – especially the shameful parts and the parts we’d rather dismiss or ignore). Imagine being sacred space for others – being a place of refuge, where someone feels their connection to their own heart and the divine. We can be that space!
- In our MBC workshop, we’ll move deeper from “decluttering our outer space” to learning to BE that sacred space.
Come join us on Wednesday, March 9 for our Mind-Body Connections workshop, Cultivating Sacred Space. We are a beautiful community of faculty and staff who have made this monthly gathering their touchstone that nourishes us and supports us going back to our work and home with a deeper sense of vitality and compassion.
This post was written by Lisa McCrohan, MA, LCSW-C, RYT, Wellness Workshop Facilitator, Psychotherapist, and Compassion Coach. You can find Lisa here.