Transcript: Greetings. Let’s begin with a little body scan. But first, let’s see if we can actually experience some of the energy that’s always present in this very body, and all the circles around us actually connecting to the energy – the energy of life, we might say. Some call it the divine energy, aliveness that we are.
So, take your hands and just start rubbing them together. Both hands, just rub them really fast for just a little while. Notice what you’re feeling as you rub them together, notice if there’s any change in sensation.
Just keep breathing and relaxing and noticing your hands as you rub them together, perhaps it’s warming.
And now, stop and separate your hands just a few inches, and just feel. Feel whatever you notice around your hands, between your hands. Just notice, and feel. And now, let each hand relax.
As your feet are relaxing on the floor, your hands relaxing on your lap, perhaps your sides, your knees. Just notice your right hand. See if you can just feel where the palm is, the fingers. Just experience the sensation of aliveness, of presence. Maybe there’s warmth, maybe there’s coolness, maybe tingling. Just be with that to the best of your ability, just right now.
Now move your awareness over to the left hand, resting on your lap or your knee, your leg, and see if you can be aware of sensation there, where the hand meets the rest of the body. Perhaps the boundary isn’t that clear. A rising and passing energy, life force, right here in this moment.
And now bring your awareness to both hands at the same time. Just feel them connecting to the rest of you. And the energy still, the sensation, the feeling emanating, perhaps moving beyond the boundaries of this body, moving into the room. Just allow yourself to feel, to be aware.
And now let’s allow ourselves to feel our feet resting on the floor. So your right foot, just notice the right foot relaxing. Toes, perhaps you can feel, or maybe not. If you can’t, that’s fine. Wherever there’s numbness or nothing, that’s what it is. Perhaps you can notice the pad of the foot, the toe mound. Perhaps the heel. Again, energy, life force, resting on the Earth.
And moving into the left side. And perhaps you’re even noticing energy moving up the body and into the legs. But just see if you can be with the foot, sensation of the foot relaxing on the Earth.
“Where are my feet? Where are my hands?” Just feeling them, knowing I’m right here, bringing awareness to this present moment of sensation, of awareness, of non-separation. Just present.
“Where are my hands? Where are my feet?” Now you might want to feel your hands, both feet and both hands at the same time. Maybe thoughts are distracting you. That’s okay, whatever it is it’s totally fine. Or maybe you can actually feel two hands, two feet, at the same time.
Coming into this moment, grounding presence: “Where are my hands? Where are my feet?” Anytime I’m lost in the mind or in confusion, it’s a very nice question to ask: “Where are my feet? Where are my hands?”
Rabbi Sheila Peltz Weinberg, Spiritual Coach, served as a congregational rabbi for seventeen years. She has also worked in the fields of Jewish community relations, Jewish education and Hillel. She has published widely on such topics as feminism, spiritual direction, parenting, social justice and mindfulness from a Jewish perspective, including in her books God Loves the Stranger: Stories Poems and Prayers and Surprisingly Happy: An Atypical Religious Memoir, and has contributed commentaries to Kol HaNeshama, the Reconstructionist prayer book. Rabbi Weinberg has taught mindfulness meditation and yoga to rabbis, Jewish professionals and lay people in the context of the Institute for Jewish Spirituality. She serves as a spiritual director to a variety of Jewish clergy including students and faculty at HUC-JIR in New York. She is creator and co-leader of the Jewish Mindfulness Teacher Training Program. She is married to Maynard Seider and they have three married children and six grandchildren.