The Distracted Centipede is about awakening to the unified sense of your whole being body, mind, spirit through the practice of Yoga and Mindfulness. It is about listening and tuning in to your body, gradually realising that wholeness can only be retrieved by identifying and letting go of unnecessary holding on. If you can stop straining you might discover that inside that tense, unbalanced body there is a 'sensible body' which can be effortlessly at ease, with the energy flowing freely and the mind becoming calm. In the midst of the mental storm there is stillness where we can experience our presence.
Who is this book for?
It is for everybody, regardless of age, physical condition, sex, or religious beliefs. It is based on the common sense that our mental, physical and spiritual health depends on our being able to take on the management of our inner world . . . by entering the journey of becoming aware, letting go of our restrictive conditioning and opening our heart to love. It is never too early and never too late to start and continue!
Dr Leon Redler MD writes: "There are many books on Yoga available today which address our desire for health and fitness, lower s’ress levels, feeling well and looking good. This book delivers all that . . . and more. Moreover, it does so in a way that is fresh and timely, while faithful to the source roots of ancient practice.
It is profoundly relevant to how we live our ordinary, everyday lives, and opens the possibility of transforming and uplifting the ordinary to the extraordinary without special techniques and without jumping on the bandwagon of yet another and latest healing fad, regimen or guru.
There's an implicit assertion here, namely, that the ordinary is truly extraordinary and would be realised as such if only we, in the form of our habitual, distracted selves, could keep out of the way of that realisation. 'The Distracted Centipede' shows a way to find all that is needed just as we are, acknowledging our relationship to the forces at play through and around us . . . and, in the course of that, being on course for relationships of greater ease, authenticity and responsibility with others."
Igor Charkowsky - Russian water birth pioneer - writes:
"This book will have a very important influence." "It is different from other books on the subject where Yoga postures are practised with a physical emphasis and without creating space for feeling the deep, subtle mechanisms that lie behind the postures and movements."
Andrew Feldmár, R. Psych., writes: When Mina sent me the manuscript of her book 'The Distracted Centipede' I was reminded that I've known the authorless ditty, from which she borrowed, for many years, but until now I didn't realise its essential message:
The centipede was happy quite
Until a toad in fun
Said, 'Pray, which leg comes after which?'
This raised her mind to such a pitch
She lay distracted in a ditch
Considering how to run.
Every midwife, obstetrician, birth coach, all the experts who want to help women to give birth might do well to meditate upon these few lines of wise poetry. The martial arts, yoga, meditation, music, dance, and singing - all teach, transmit the same wisdom: GET OUT OF THE WAY!
Life knows how to bring new life into this world. Life knows how to protect itself. Life lives us. We are not surviving because of our cleverness and heroic efforts; we survive in spite of them. Faith is surrender to that which lives us. Life knows how to walk the centipede; the self-conscious centipede doesn't. Toad's question became a debilitating distraction.
Andrew Feldmár, R. Psych., is a psychologist practising psychotherapy in Vancouver, Canada, for the past 35 years now. He studied and worked with R. D. Laing from 1974 until Laing's death in 1989. He writes and teaches internationally.
Mina Semyon writes:
This book is about how I got to 'here' from 'there'. 'Here' is where I got smart figured out that the present moment is the only place where guilt and blame, pride and shame, fear and hate have no breeding ground. 'There' is where I lay, 'Distracted in a ditch, considering how to live', in the grip of early painful memories - from which there seemed to be no escape.
A word of warning: Practice of Yoga and mindfulness might open your heart to spontaneous joy and compassion and put a smile on your face.