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Archive for June 25th, 2011

Laughter Yoga

Laughter yoga

 Recently I attended a “Laughter Yoga” workshop at a local hospital. I was curious what it was all about. For those of you who’ve never attended, the instructor first gave a talk about the mental and physical benefits of laughter and then proceeded to lead us through a series of steps to get us interacting with one another through eye contact and what she called “unconditional” laughter; laughing for the sheer joy of it. Each exercise seemed funnier than the one before but, the highlight of the evening for me was the connection I made with a young lady who came in a wheelchair. She clearly had multiple physical challenges. I wondered if she had mental ones as well.

 Before we even began the laughter exercises, I sensed a great deal of joy in this young woman. Her eyes were already laughing. I wanted to approach her but found myself nervous and unsure of how to talk with her. I didn’t know what her level of understanding was because she hadn’t spoken a word all evening. I found myself seated next to her for the final exercise and decided to choose her for my partner. As directed, we placed the palms of our hands together and laughingly shared positive affirmations about our dreams coming true. She had some difficulty saying the words but I didn’t let that deter me. I decided to tell her how much joy I was receiving from her. When her huge smile got even wider, I asked permission to give her a hug. There was SO MUCH JOY in her hug that I was completely overwhelmed. I thanked her through my own tears of joy.

 This remarkable young woman may have had difficulty speaking but it didn’t matter because I have a sneaking suspicion that she already knew what the rest of us were trying to learn.

 Pure joy is simply beyond words.

 Wishing you pure joy,
Paula

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