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Beginnings :: Katherine Ferrier

photo by katherine ferrier

Before we look at beginnings, let us look to the moment before we begin.

Before we begin, we stand in one of my very favorite moments.

You know the one?

Right before the crossing?

Right before you enter the space?

Right before you make the first move?

Before we begin, before we set the many wheels in motion, we stand in that vast and sacred territory of the yet-to-be.

I love that moment for its spacious wingspan, its wide-openness, its atom-thin closeness to the feeling of infinite possibility. In this sweet space of about to become, if we can remember not to rush, if we can call ourselves fully in to ourselves, we have the opportunity to touch the edge of what we know, to beckon what hovers in the emerging into the here. Tuning in to the moment before the beginning is a powerful part of my practice, a readily available reminder to tap into the power of what is possible, and remember that what is possible is much wider than I'm usually able to perceive. As Pam is so good at reminding us, "We are capable of so much more than we know."

Often, when The Architects teach, we nod to John Cage, who famously offered his wise and compassionate begin anywhere. I say compassionate, because if you've ever stood in that moment, just before the beginning of something (and if you're reading this now, you most certainly have, countless times) you know that it doesn't always feel exhilarating, with its wild blue yonder full of possibilities. Indeed, often it is those very wide open possibilities that can give rise to a panic like no other: the paralysis of where do I even begin?! It is in those times of panic that compassion is a useful companion, because it can soften you enough to reconnect to the moment, and to your sensation, which is all you need in order to begin with intention.

To practice beginning anywhere is to decolonize your habits of perception, to reach openly towards all you can perceive and attend to, and acknowledge, by your very willingness to consider it, that ALL of it is equally worthy of your attention. Not just the grand gesture, the known schtick, the familiar way in – but the awkward, the tiny, the quiet movement or sound that rarely gets noticed, let alone given space to develop into fullness or complexity.

To begin anywhere is to say yes to whatever happens (which is not ever the same as "doing whatever," but that's a topic for another post) and honor its particular is-ness by pouring your attention into it, by making room in your body and your curiosity for it to grow.

And grow, it will. Because that is the nature of emerging forms.

Ok, let's take it from the top:

Feel the moment before you begin.

Open up the apertures of perception.

Begin anywhere...

Allow that beginning be the poetic blueprint for how you might continue.

TRUST that something will happen, and that you are more capable than you know of partnering that something into its being.

And then? Keep going, you brave and beautiful being! Keep going!

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