Saturday, December 18, 2010

That Makes Me Feel so Peaceful!

One morning I sat two of my more quirky students down at the desk in front of me. Both are artsy little kids, who struggle to stay focused and tuned into daily math or reading lessons; they'd much prefer wander around their creative and very engaging fantasy lives. As I moved things around on my desk, getting ready to work with these two delightful little kids I lifted up my new set of Tibetian chimes (tingsha); they gently tapped together. Melody blurted out, "That makes me feel so peaceful!" No kidding I thought to myself. I heard the yoga teacher in me say, "Well, why don't we close our eyes, take a deep and slow breathe in and out. Let's breathe two more times only through our noses.....slow, deep breathes." And, then, when these two squirmy little kids looked completely relaxed and focused, I purposefully tapped the chimes again. When I looked up, Jackson, the creative and energetic little boy was sitting with his head held high, his eyes closed, his arms out and fingers touching in true meditation pose, with the most sublime look on his face. "Follow the sound," I heard myself repeating what my meditation teacher tells me when he rings the huge singing bowl in the meditation room of my meditation class. The singing bowl functions much the same way as the Tibetian chimes. Next to Jackson, Melody sat in peace, completely still, also in perfect meditation pose, a quiet and happy smile on her face. I was amazed and delighted.

My loving husband had just purchased these tingsha for me at a Buddhist center where we take meditation classes. Tibetian chimes or tingshas, also called Tibetian bells or Tibetian cymbals, are made of a bronze alloy, forged in Tibet in a way that captures a particular resonance, a harmonic set of tones, that is, simply, soulful. It's a clear and pure vibration that lasts for quite some time (one of my meditation students counted to 15 while she was listening the chimes). When I "follow the sound" it reminds me of how I feel when I smell anything made of essential oils; as I inhale, I smell deep down in my bones (strange, I know!). The Tibetian cymbals vibrate, in a similar way, so that I feel the vibration and harmonic tones deep down to my toes...I almost want to reach out and take a bite or grab it in the air.

Maybe next time these two wonderful students can't focus or sit still during long and, to them, boring school lessons, I should just walk up to their classroom, stand in the doorway and ring my Tibetian chimes............

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