week 1/7: Creative Campfire Community

hqdefaultby Suzanne L. Beenackers

A few weeks ago, I wrote about our wonderful city Nijmegen as Rivendell on Waal: an almost secret community where the relatively low real estate prices are evidence that nobody seems to realize we’ve got a piece of Middle Earth right here. And despite blazing temperatures last week, we haven’t seen those two hobbits trying to cast a ring within our city borders, so we’re not on the bad side of it.

Last weekend I visited de Kaaij: a free food and music festival. It’s an annual event that has gone from a few weeks, to being open all summer this year! Right under the Waal bridge, at the river beach. This year I was met with a gigantic fence that said: Dangerous tides. Swim at own risk. Later I read in the local newspaper it was supposed to include/ or supposedly included a total ban on swimming, and to keep people off the beach, but I didn’t see that.
I was actually quite happy the beach finally had explicit warnings about how dangerous the river is. Just last week a man died in the Waal, trying to save his grown son.

Click to go Lou's community

Click to go to Lou’s community

Since the fence didn’t lock the beach (as it was supposed to, apparently), I just walked around it, and sat in the sand drinking white wine, eating my stone oven pizza, and watching little children drown.
Just kidding.
But it could have happened….
Despite the warning, there were still about 10-15 children swimming there with merely one adult visibly on high alert on the beach, watching them like a hawk.
Then I read that some parties are angry about the fence, “because the fence creates a false sense of safety” (How??!) and they suggest a Waalwatch. It doesn’t say if Waalwatch would get legal power to prohibit people from swimming, or if they are there to see to it that people are saved when the Waal starts taking lives.

Although I think it’s completely admirable that De Kaaij is recruiting a team for Waalwatch, the easiest way to create a false sense of safety would probably be to have amateurs dress up as lifeguards alongside the shore. Even I would risk a dip there, if I know there’s back-up, right?

So on the peak of the heat wave, I was getting all worked up about all those dog owners and other caretakers who thought a sign SWIM AT OWN RISK, and DANGEROUS TIDES meant
“please walk around the fence and release any creatures trusted to your care into the water”.
I definitely needed more wine, to deal with so much stupidity.

Meanwhile the new yoga season had started, and after 21 weeks of “Find what feels good” Yoga with Adriene, I was now switching to Shiva Rea for 7 weeks. Shiva records her dvds in beautiful sceneries: Goa, Greece, the Maldives. In these sequences she refers to nature profusely:
the fire of transformation
the flow of water
the stable base of the earth
And all I kept thinking was: *curse* “If people do anymore “finding what feels good” and “going with the flow”, they’re going to end up drowned and dead.”
So what was I going to teach?

One of my favorite spiritual teachers is Lou Niestadt: she shares her Art Journals and the art of Journaling through her newsletter, and books, and she is now working on an online course.
And the first part, membership of the Creative Campfire Community, is completely free!
She has a pop-up at the top / above the header to join the Creative Campfire Community.
It immediately appealed to me…. a campfire. That’s manageable. And you can do the course at 289your own pace, like a little summer project (remember those creative holiday books?). look into your soul. Contemplate. Study the Self, instead of the other.
So that’s what I ll be teaching: to go within.
Attend to your inner fire.
Listen to your river of thoughts.
Find your stable base.
And if all else fails: to order more wine.

week 1 – Yoga with Shiva

For seven weeks I m teaching from two dvd’s of Shiva Rea. This is our first week, where I have derived three basic flows from the dvd Yoga Shakti
Basic Flow – Standing poses and Sun Salutations
Basic Flow – Seated Poses
Basic Flow – Lying Poses
These pdf’s are a stand alone tool – since not everybody will have the dvd, and because the practices on You Tube are often taken down.
If you want to check if they are currently available you can check these search links:
Standing Poses & Classical Sun Salutations
Seated Poses
Lying Poses: Supine Poses and Inversions

I’m using music from Abel Korzeniowski from W.E. and A Single Man.
You can check this month’s Playlist on Spotify 

Would you like to join my yoga classes in Nijmegen? Email me for your first class!
You can find all info here.  


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