Dogs and the Art of Being Zen

Living in the moment is not so easy for us humans. We find ourselves dwelling on the past or thinking about the future or focusing on the tasks ahead of us to complete our day.

Dogs know better. They live in the moment.

loco mugMany times I will find myself sitting cross legged, with my little Chihuahua in my lap, and we go through a guided meditation together. He lays quite still and clearly enjoys the energy that radiates through both of us as we gravitate towards a higher level together.

I tell this story as I had an interesting experience recently with Prana Yoga meditation in a group setting. As I was participating in the session, my dog was participating from many, many miles away.

The teacher, Simplicity Love, offers retreats and classes that focus on the art of self-healing through Ayurveda. In the meditation, I rested the top point of the back of my neck where it joins the skull on a rubber block and pair of rubber balls. This is the Feng Fu trigger point (GV 16 in the diagram).  I have long known that placing ice on this point is a great way to eliminate a headache caused by sinus pressure. Little did I know that minimal movements – rolling the neck ever so slightly using micro movements  over the rubber balls – would eliminate body pain and bring balance between Yin and Yang. Using this technique, along with breathing once in and out through one nostril and then the other while gently depressing the alternative nostril, brought me into balance again and set up an opportunity to release myself into a deep, meditative state of being.

So how does the story about my Zen dog fit into a story about meditation? One minute before the instructor announced to the class that it was time to “reconnect” with our bodies and come out of the meditative state of being, I saw in my mind’s eye, that my little dog had stepped out of the front door of my home and looked into the world. He was clearly looking for me. Could it be that my dog had joined me in the meditation from so many miles away and was bringing me back to the land of the living? This stunning revelation brought me great joy as I realized that my dog understood meditation far better than I. Not only had he joined me in the meditation, but he searched for me in the higher realm to bring me back.

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