March 29, 2017 :: YVONNE BOND

SOME INSIGHTS FROM THIS SESSION:

  • Understand two sides of fatigue and what to do with them.

  • When it's challenging to generate Feel Good / metta, it is still possible to receive it.

  • When it's challenging to have concentration and clarity, it is still possible to fall back on equanimity.

  • Masters keep returning to and honing the fundamentals.


ABOUT YVONNE

Yvonne lives in Las Vegas, New Mexico, and works as a transcriptionist. She began meditating because of illness. “I wasn’t interested in meditation at all until I suddenly became ill in February 1987.” 

This is despite being a teenager during the Beatnik era, writing poetry and creating art with like-minded people in North Beach, San Francisco. Then she headed to UC Berkeley, where she engaged in the civil rights movement, and then the anti-war movement.

I helped organize some of the really huge demonstrations, marches that went from Berkeley to Oakland. That’s when I really became aware of suffering -- how the soldiers suffered, how the Vietnamese were suffering, and we wanted to do something about it. We dropped everything, careers and school, and did that.
During the hippie time I was aware that people were pursing eastern religions but I thought, ‘well, that’s just a bunch of navel gazing.’ So I put it down…until I got really sick, years later, and a voice came to me.
I was biking on my way to my transcription job and I suddenly felt very ill. I felt like I was going to die. Then for the next six months after that, I was so sick, I could barely move. One day, I was lying there feverish, writhing around in my bed, and a voice came to my head and said ‘you need to learn how to meditate.’ So I looked through my yoga books and tried that, but it didn’t work. 
Then I found – guess who -- Shelly Young! She was giving an 8-week meditation class in Sante Fe. I was in so much pain. I would just cry a lot--until stuff was just running down my shirt from my eyes and nose. And Shelly would say: ‘Just pay attention to the body sensations.’ Or: ‘In the body, in the moment.’ Some fairly big things fell away right away, like icebergs calving. I thought, God – I see this! I see that!

Yvonne manages chronic illness and pain to this day, chiefly with mediation and without medication.

#THREELITTLEKNOWNFACTS

  • FEATURED AS CHAPTER 2 IN “VOICES OF COUNTERCULTURE IN THE SOUTHWEST” BY JACK LOEFFLER AND MEREDITH DAVIDSON (COMING APRIL 2017).

  • HELPED ORGANIZE AND MANAGE SHINZEN’S RETREATS IN NEW MEXICO IN THE EARLY 90S.

  • LOVES TO SING.


When I was very, very sick, and I could hardly get out [of the house] at all, I re-listened to Shinzen’s tapes, and he said, ‘even if you only stay in your room and do loving kindness, you will be leading a very good life.’ And I really took it to heart! I haven’t been able to do a lot of things that I would have liked to have done because of chronic illness, but I thought, I can always do that.
— Yvonne Bond
Emily BarrettComment