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And Andy (who is @acdolph on Twitter) asked a very useful question.
I had been saying something about how, as a shivanaut, you can apply Shiva Nata principles to everything you do. To anything you’re working on.
Andy, very sensibly, asked what those principles were.
And I was all, Huh?
That’s because I suffer from eternal Too Much Information syndrome.
Being way too close to this stuff, it hadn’t occurred to me that many of you might not be familiar with the basic Shiva Nata principles.
But of course you wouldn’t (though you might already feel them or have a sense of them) because, well, why would you? It isn’t really something I’ve talked about explicitly here.
Silly me! So then — after I stopped stuttering — I talked about some of those principles and how they work. And it might be useful to talk about them here too.
Anyway, here are some of the basic Dance of Shiva principles (and accompanying superpowers). In no particular order.
Things are constantly in flux.
Everything is moving. Go with it.
In Shiva Nata, we’re invariably going to be lost most of the time. When we’re not messing up, it’s not working.
So the rules are constantly changing. The formulae get increasingly complex. Each sequence takes apart what you’ve just learned. Each algorithm is crazier than the last.
And we just deal with it. We adapt. And we laugh at how ridiculously terrible we are at adapting.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Agility, Flexibility and Balance. Also the superpower of “Oh, things are like this now? Okay!”
2. Find the openings.
There is always an opening.
Always a gap.
Patterns are made of elements and the gaps between them. Use the gaps.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Curiosity, Play, Courage, Delight
3. It’s all patterns.
Pattern recognition is what we do.
Everything is a pattern and any pattern can be changed.
Shiva Nata helps you identify and recognize what the patterns are, without thinking that they’re good or bad (because that’s a pattern too).
It shows you what’s going on for you in any given moment.
Eventually you just start to notice patterns everywhere. And to play with them.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Awareness, Clarity, Flow
We approach things with a methodical scientific mindset of exploration and discovery.
You don’t just make connections and cross the midline to challenge the brain.
You make every possible connection between X number of points. You cross hemispheres using sequential patterns.
And each new pattern reconfigures the elements of the old pattern.
Same thing when you work on personal patterns (mental, emotional, physical, energy, spiritual, whatever you’re working on).
You establish a hypothesis. You play with one element at a time. You document the process.
Pattern-mapping and pattern-deconstructing. Testing things. Taking notes! That’s the approach.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Order, Structure, Form, Curiosity, Play, Inquisitiveness, Investigation, Potentiality.
5. Own your space.
We do a lot of work with spatial awareness in Shiva Nata, both physically and energetically. And symbolically.
We use force fields. We build buffers. We work on getting to know our internal and immediately-external space.
And we work on maintaining our sense of where our space begins and ends. We learn about our right to take up space. To claim it unapologetically.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Sovereignty, Spaciousness, Containment, Safety, Support, Grounding, Stability, Trust.
This is related to experimentation.
We mess around with things. We are big believers in Try Stuff.
We use words, colors, numbers, directions, anything we can think of.
We approach the practice with joy and with glee when we can.
And with an experimental “I wonder what this will be like” when we can’t.
There’s a reason my center is called The Playground. We play there.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Creativity, Experimentation, Joy, Delight, Wonder, Healing.
7. Release attachment.
This is related to adaptation.
Don’t get married to any particular pattern. It’s temporary.
When you practice Shiva Nata, it will feel so good whenever you have the sense that you’re “getting it right”. But getting it wrong is where the magic is.
So we have to let go of things. Lovingly. With compassion.
It’s hard stuff. It’s the advanced practice. And Shiva Nata teaches us how to do this.
Also, you gotta be okay with paradox. Everything in Shiva Nata has a corollary, an exception, a caveat. Baby, that’s how it is.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Trust, Release, Courage, Strength, Love.
8. There is no learning without challenge.
This is an Andrey-ism and it is your reminder to always make it harder!
Seriously. Always make it harder.
But! We challenge patterns with love.
We don’t crush our patterns. We play with them. And we don’t challenge ourselves out of meanness, we challenge with compassion.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Grace, Power, Sovereignty, Harmony.
9. Do it wrong!
Flail disastrously! Mess up. Be awful at this. That’s the point.
Plus, it’s good for you.
Get it wrong. Get it wronger! Screw it up even more.
Shiva Nata is a giant permission slip (and a tiny one on a popsicle stick) to be terrible at something. And for that to be really, truly okay. Not just okay, but desirable.
There is no such thing as being good at this. No one ever has been and no one ever will be.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Permission, Flow, Forgiveness, .
10. Choose Freedom.
Andrey says that the purpose of Shiva Nata is the liberation of your consciousness. Big words. And scary sometimes.
But yes, stick with the practice and you will feel it. At first in glimpses and hidden moments. And then more regularly. Freedom.
Shiva Nata teaches you how to be free (while still taking responsibility for your choices and your actions).
Freedom from having to do things the way you’ve always done them. Freedom to rewrite the patterns.
RELATED SUPERPOWERS: Congruence, Sovereignty, Permission, Possibility. And some other things that don’t really have words.
Shiva Nata is endless. Both infinite and infinitely complex. So these are by now means all of them. Luckily, they’re all connected anyway.
If none of this makes sense to you, no worries. Keep practicing. Keep flailing!
If this stuff that I’m talking about here is really appealing to you, take it to the practice. Ask to be shown more about the principle that speaks to you.
And if you’re coming to the September Training — aka the Shivanautical Academy of Hilarity and Play — you’ll leave with a much deeper sense of how to use these principles and apply them to real life.
Hope this was helpful! Was it?
p.s. Tiny popsicle stick reminder! Twelve days left in the the September Training early registration period.