The Core

Recently, while walking on the wooded trails near my home, I came across a statuesque pine tree literally snapped at its center. The towering thick tree was no longer—splintered fibers grew up like flickering flames—sharp and dangerous. The broken half remained attached by a handful of wooden strands. Its position formed a triangle, as the top of the tree was folded, surrendered branches splayed on the earth’s floor.

It must have snapped during the storm last week, I thought to myself. But, it felt like there was more. I walked up closer and peered upward to the shocking split. Was it lightning? No, not lightning. No burnt markings… The Core. From my new vantage point I could see it, the center of the tree was rotted. Possibly disease or insects had burrowed in and created an unseen illness. The weakened tree could no longer withstand the chaos of the force winds that surrounded it.

The triangle is known to signify the trinity of many things. In my own experience, I understand it as mind, body and spirit. Three aspects of my being that I try to keep clear, full, and engaged by living a healthy life style. Seeing this tree and the disease that grew in its center, prompted me to reflect on how easy it was to allow my center to become weak. These three facets blend together to create the trinity of life. When one side is out of balance it affects the alignment of all. Each part touches the next. There is no separation.

Keeping my mind engaged is the key to my personal expansion. Information collected helps me formulate new ways of thinking about life, work, and creativity. In the process of gathering knowledge my mind becomes open and my perspective broaden. I keep my thoughts positive and optimistic because what I focus on expands. If I place energy into negative thoughts, it creates disharmony in my day. The power of intention can manifest good or bad and it is up to me to design my own life. A positive attitude has been instrumental in cultivating the momentum to take risks and step into different roles in my lifetime.

My body is the space where my soul resides. A sacred chamber I guard with great care. Nutrition, exercise, and self-love are the basis of staying strong. Tapping into how my body feels, physically and emotionally, is just as important. Breathing, slowing down, and listening is essential. Like the disease inside of the tree, we can have disease in our bodies too. Sometimes, it is a physical illness, but other times it is a dis-ease. When I am discontent or uncomfortable or carrying harmful energy around, this creates internal discord. If the dis-ease is given time and energy to build, it can become something more. It can morph into cells creating rot within. But, even at the early stages of discord, weakness is created at the center. Agitations, resentments, and fear eat away at the very fibers that make us strong.

My spiritual philosophy and practice is much like the yoga tree pose. When I am grounded, my feet are firmly rooted into my authentic self. Rising up from the earth, aligning my trunk straight and tall, I reach for the sky with my arms, or my branches. Although I am stretching upward into the air above me, I am flexible, allowing the breeze to blow through my leaves. My core is engaged and strong as I reach for the stars my fingertips touch a bigger consciousness and understanding, while I am simultaneously digging into the essence of my being. When I am using the spiritual tools of prayer and meditation, it fills my soul keeping me centered and on a path of love and compassion for self and others. I become stable and pliable enough to withstand changes in my environment with confidence and ease.

Taking good care is simple, but in a world that spins faster and faster each day, it can be a challenge to dial it back. If I am in constant motion, there is no way I am tuned into how I am feeling. What I have learned to be true—is how I feel affects my mind, body and spirit. I am learning the value of checking in through out my day to understand how I am feeling and what my needs might be at any given moment. Getting into a routine to pause, breathe and assess affords me the opportunity to make adjustments.

Practice, miss-steps, and realignment are realities when it comes to the trinity of life. I am constantly shifting, like the tree, but trusting in my ability to return to the tools that keep me strong. The journey of discovery and wholeness is a process, one of imperfection and self-forgiveness.

Define your triangle with what resonates within you. May you find stillness inside your core, allowing your roots to dive deep into the soil, and feel the freedom in your branches as you reach up into the sun lit sky.

2 thoughts on “The Core”

  1. Simply beautiful Nicole. Your words are exactly what I needed to hear today. I needed to be reminded that what I think effects my body and it is okay to take some down time to regroup. Thank you.

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