Here is a gift. I discovered it in Martha Beck's book, Finding your Way in a Wild New World, which I love.
Hand-Sensing Exercise by Eckart Tolle, from his book A New Earth.
Close your eyes and hold out your hand.
Allow yourself to feel your hand.
Ask yourself how – without touching anything, without moving your hand and without looking at your hand – you can know that your hand is still there.
Your mind might say it knows it's there, because it was just there a minute ago.
But there is another way of knowing. You can feel the inside of your hand, a subtle sense of warmth or tingling.
This is the subtle sense of aliveness.
If your mind wanders, just return your attention to feel the sensations in your hand.
This hand sensing exercise brings your awareness to the present moment. Do this exercise whenever you can to get in touch with your inner sense of aliveness.
This inner sense of aliveness is your own conscious presence, your being-ness, the you that you really are, beneath your thinking and beyond your story.
The quality of my life has improved greatly since I began this practice a few months ago. I hope you can try it!
Handmade with recycled sterling silver.
Soon in my online shop.
The past few years were hard for me. Like a game of Tetris, the foundation of my identity came tumbling down when my dad became ill and we thought we’d lose him. I had little contact with the outside world, and spent lots of time alone. I needed to process grief, uncertainty, and unhealthy beliefs and behaviors from my past.
Grief became depression. I was unable to form a sense of who I was and of how I understood the world. I had turned to a scientific and logical view for answers, but it felt arid soulless. Depression turned into hopelessness. In my lack of connection to myself and others I lost all footing, and soon it became hard to face each day. I sought help in therapy, but it took me deeper into the unresolved pain of my childhood.
I separated from my partner, and spent the next few months alone trying to reconnect with myself. I found new forms of therapy that strengthened my body awareness rather than my thoughts. I reunited with friends and family and shared a more vulnerable side of myself. Little by little I regained joy. I cut off my hair and gave away many of my belongings. I stopped trying to understand everything and instead let my senses lead the way.
The day the earth shook I felt that my journey into the depths of my psyche was ending. I had faced it bravely and my wound had healed. When the earth shook I ran out of my apartment. The lobby floor undulated and I fell across the hallway on my knees. For the first time in years I knew I had to get out. Life was waiting for me.
Handmade with recycled sterling silver.
Soon in my online shop.
Last night, my dear friends at Fábrica Social celebrated their 10 year anniversary at Espacio Horizontal, in the Colonia Roma.
Dulce Martínez and Daniela Gremion empower 148 women artisans from indigenous communities across Mexico with fair access to market, and design workshops that allow them to explore their creativity and continue to create their beautiful textiles.
It was a treat to see samples from Fábrica's current and past collections, next to the raw materials, natural dyes, and weaving techniques the women use to create them. The best part was meeting the artists in person. Some travelled to Mexico City from Chiapas, Hidalgo and Oaxaca for the first time.
I am a huge fan of this project and I love every piece I own. I hope you get to see their work in person one day, they have two gorgeous shops in Mexico City. In the meantime, check out their Etsy shop and fall in love with their work on Instagram and Facebook.
I try to go out once a week with my dad. He is slowly gaining strength and cannot walk yet, but he appreciates short visits to quiet places, and he lives near the National University's Cultural Center, home to the Museum of Contemporary Art.
We wheeled through the Ives Klein exhibit in contemplative silence, my father looking like a rockstar with the sunglasses he wears to shade his eyes from the light.
This is the english translation of the interview:
My name is Jennifer Musi and I am a jeweler.
It has has been 9 years this month since I began to make jewelry. I took a class in a government-run trade school, where I learnt the technical aspects of the trade: how to cut, solder, and learn all the basic skills you need to make jewelry with a few tools and a simple method.
I began to create from an early age. My mother is an artist, and when my sister and I were little, she showed us how to make things so that we would let her work in peace. She taught us every new medium she learnt. We learnt to make punch rugs, sew, knit, dye fabric and paint. So ever since I was young, making things with my hands has been natural to me.
I love Art Clay because I was first a painter and a ceramist, and my work as a jeweler is very graphic. Art Clay allows me to draw on a maleable substance and turn it into a piece that is hardened by fire. With my background as a visual artist, it is the perfect medium for me to make jewelry.
Art Clay registers every mark I make when I draw on a soft rubber mold. It is the best way to faithfully reproduce something. I love that I get to keep every mark I make during the building process: it registers fingerprints or crooked lines, and both can be part of the finished silver piece. I think that those details or “accidents” give life to a handmade object. It’s like when children draw, it’s their looseness and freedom which gives their art such energy and vitality.
For this show, I made 15 small amulets. Some will later become pendants or rings, but for this exhibition I decided to leave them as small frames. Every piece has a figure; there are animals, objects and people. I like that every one is a symbol: the hand represents peace or protection, animals are the beast within, they are all a part of us. I wanted to create a playful inner world.
I have a new home. The earthquake kicked me out of the colonia Roma, and now I live in the south of the city, in a colorful borough named Coyoacán (Place of Coyotes, in Nahuatl).
Colonia del Carmen, where my apartment is located, has been home to the poet Octavio Paz, the actors Dolores del Río and Mario Moreno Cantinflas, exiled Leon Trotsky, and of course, Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, among many other creative beings.
Here, I feel the ancient roots of Mexico. The old hacienda homes, the carved churches, the amber fragrance of copal incence, the abundant food and craft market. Nature is present on every block, and my heart soars when I pass flowering cacti on the sidewalks, or walk under the shade of magnificent jacaranda trees.
The national university is nearby, so there are students enjoying themselves in every park bench and fountain; some read, others converse, exited to be alive. I feel the same way.
I am grateful that the adventure continues. After the ground shook me, I became more present. I no longer seek to understand the great mystery of life, I just let myself feel it.
Welcome to my home!
My Etsy shop will be closed until October 2.
Mexico was hit by two major earthquakes. The first (on September 7) hit the southern states, and the second (on September 19) hit the central areas of the country.
My family and loved ones are safe, but many parts of Mexico are still in chaos. Many buildings fell, others were severely damaged, and thousands of people lost everything. If you can help, here's a list of reliable relief efforts that take online donations.
I began this painting a few weeks ago.
Then I went to see a healer.
She told me to use bigger brushes, to seek expression, and let my sexual energy do the painting. She said the cathartic process would heal me.
Here's the result.
Acrylic on wood panel.
39" by 55" (1 m by 1.40 cm).