Tell it to the rock

I was on the elliptical machine at the gym yesterday and a piece of music came up on my ipod that I hadn't heard for a while - it was Door #1 Energy from Toby Christensen's Four Doors Open.

I met Toby last April when he and Lisa Needham (of Park City Yoga) hosted a yoga retreat at our center on St. John.

Toby is a drummer - not just a drummer - a healing drummer. Toby travels the world healing people through his drumming. He makes music that penetrates all the shells and bubbles we put up around ourselves. His music goes straight to where we need healing. I know this first hand because he did a healing session with me that allowed me to let go of some fears I'd been clinging to for years. I don't understand how it worked but, it did. And I am grateful.

Listening to his CD's, while not the same as experiencing his drumming live is still a cleansing experience for me.
So what does this have to do with the rock?

Toby passed along a tradition that he'd learned from an African tribe that resonated with me. I've since shared this tradition with every yoga retreat group that I lead.
It's simple. It's powerful.
Think of a story that you tell yourself over and over again - but that is not productive (e.g. I'm fat, I'm not good enough to be a writer, I can never quite my job and become a musician, It's my fault my children have issues....) It can be profound, it can be a minor nuisance.

Find a rock (we do this ritual at Blue Cobblestone Beach on St. John, but you can do it in your driveway or a park or anywhere).

Tell the rock your story. (Optional: spit on the rock to seal it)

When you want to let go of the story, bury the rock.

I love this ritual because it is so TANGIBLE. Most meditation is all in our heads - but I find this a particularly useful tool for the big, ugly stuff that I can't seem to purge with my mind alone.

I'm sure there are much more eloquent ways to describe this ritual (I've been told it's widely used in Africa). If anyone had any more info, please share it!

Here's more about the St. John retreat with Toby and Lisa from last April, and Lenore's experience with the ritual from our May retreat.

And more about Toby Christensen.

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