Pamela Frost is a Reiki Master, Certified Yoga Instructor, Author and Artist. She is fun loving. She is serious. She is an activist. She is a seeker. I had the pleasure to chat with her about a Still Point Retreat she attended in Asheville, North Carolina this past weekend. As a yoga meditation practitioner myself, I had so many questions, so many things I wanted to know.
What is Still Point Meditation? Why does it interest you?
Still Point Meditation is just one form of meditation. In Yoga it is referred to as the place between the breaths. That point where the in becomes the out. It is a focal point for meditation. Our instructor Dale Allen Hoffman told us to visualize a wheel and the breath moving that wheel. In his method we were breathing more rapidly than I usually do in meditation and I think this helped me shift my focus totally onto the breath. The goal was to keep up a regular rhythm and pace of breath. Like most people I find it impossible to shut down my monkey mind. Emptying my mind of all thought is nearly impossible. I have been searching for the peace and clarity of that moment when all thought ceases for a long time.
What is your spiritual background?
I was raised Methodist/Baptist. Early in my 20’s I called myself an agnostic. The biblical teachings of the church made no sense to me. The church itself and its obsession with tithing and telling me how to think made me doubt any higher power being at work in that circle of people. I think the Holier than Thou attitude was the most repellent aspect of the churches I attended. Their insistence that their way was the only way. Since then I’ve done extensive reading on world religions and I kind-of cobbled together my own view of God and the Universe. In a nutshell for me it’s all about energy and balance.
I know you do yoga, do you also meditate on a regular basis?
Meditation is a large part of yoga. I start my series of poses with a body scan mediation. It helps me shift gears and know what stretches my body needs. Yoga is a moving meditation. Focusing on breath and movement, trying to stop the mind chatter. At the end of my movements I lie flat and focus on breath. Sometimes I’ll play a CD for a guided meditation. So yes, I do yoga and meditate on a regular basis.
Has your experience with Still Point Meditation changed your life?
Wow. Now there’s a loaded question. Experiencing that moment of stillness has been a goal of mine for years. Not only have I studied religious texts but also shamanic authors like Carlos Castaneda in my quest for that bliss. I’d only been able to achieve that sensation of being out of body once before, 40 or so years ago. So to do it twice in one weekend was a high unlike any other. I could become a Still Point junkie. I did it twice and the first time was about letting go of toxic thinking. I cried as I released the issues I’ve been working on. The next time I was out longer and it was about receiving. The bliss washed over me both times. It’s taken days to process all I received in those few minutes. I’m trained as a Reiki Healer and one message I received was that the Light workers were around me always helping me even when I was not concentrating on them. Healing is always taking place. I had a sensation like bubbles popping in areas of my body where I’ve had injuries.
Did you fast during the weekend?
No. my diet was about my usual.
What were your days like at the retreat?
Being in the Mountains near Asheville NC at the rustic Mountain Light Sanctuary was the perfect setting for this spiritual retreat. No cell phone service, no computers for three days. We stayed in a cabin by the stream with no electric and a night-time chamber pot. It was like camping except I didn’t have to sleep on the ground. We took a couple of days before for leisurely travel to the retreat which helped set the mood.
I came to Mountain Light Sanctuary and Dale Allen Hoffman’s Aramaic Shekina Breath of Fire Intensive Retreat having no idea what to expect. I had listened to his teaching about the more literal translations of the bible from the original Aramaic texts and was fascinated by his message. It felt true. I wanted more. I needed some time to clear my mind and decide what was to be next in my life. Having just finished Not Your Mother’s Book on Home Improvement I was hoping to get inspiration for my next project. Twenty or so like-minded individuals hung on Dale’s every word in his classes.
We started the weekend with a river baptism, not to wash away our sins as the Christians believe, but as a still point, full immersion in a cold mountain stream stops the breath, creating a still point. Then through breath we created a still point. Everyone brings to this meditation all that they are so the experience is very different from person to person. A person deeply rooted in Christian dogma may feel unity with Jesus at the still point. For me, that time in still point seemed to last a long time and a longer time to process all that happened. I was hyper aware of all around me. I felt the presence of all, of the entire universe all joined. I let go of poisonous beliefs; I blew them out on the breath. I took in pure energy. At still point I was conscious of the fact that I was not breathing and didn’t want to or need to. I wanted to hang onto the feeling of bliss for as long as possible. Toward the end my heart pounded in my chest. and I knew I had to breathe, but I only took little sips of air not wanting to loose the feeling. I wanted to hold on to it forever.
For more information about the Mountain Light Sanctuary go to: http://www.mtnlightsanctuary.com/directory.htm
For information about Pamela’s novel Houses of Cards go to: