The gym was full. The crowds were loud. This was our son’s big wrestling season finale. Districts! Even the grandparents were here to cheer him on!

It had been a good year. Henry, who at the time was 10, was in his first year of wrestling, and was undefeated so far. He was ready to face his final match, a kid in his weight class who had been wrestling for four years already.

My husband had checked in with our kiddo, so we knew he was nervous as he anticipated the big match. Up in the stands, we chatted amongst ourselves whiling away the seemingly eternal wait.


We heard the announcement that Henry was next. I scanned the crowds looking for him…and there he was. There was my son in cross-legged position, we call it “silat”, with wrists on his knees, thumb touching middle finger, back straight. Though I wasn’t close enough to see or hear him, I knew he was breathing deeply in through his nose and out through his mouth.

Compassionate Balanced Action

Sitting in silat position (legs crossed) is one of the ways we do our meditation at Naga. The art we train, Poekoelan, is very physical. We learn to strike and hit, to defend ourselves against multiple attackers. We push our bodies and build our strength. The practice of meditation brings balance. We learn to quiet the mind and connect to spirit. This art is Compassionate Balanced Action.


When I do my daily meditation, it’s a chance for my brain to rest. I feel it relaxing and letting go with each breath. It’s as though I suddenly have more space inside my head. The world is a busy place, and to be able to find some quiet and peace in the midst of it all is a real gift.

Back at the Gym

The crowds were loud and the air was vibrating with energy! In the midst of the chaos, Henry was preparing himself for his biggest match yet in the best way he knew how, by breathing deeply, quieting his mind, and setting his intention.

I’ve taught a lot of kids over the years and I know this to be true: When we share a genuine gift with children, one that they sense is pure, honest and authentic, they know it, they feel it and they “get” it.

What a great tool to have. No matter what we are thinking and feeling, whether scary, sad, overwhelming or anything, facing challenges from a place of internal strength brings calm, connection and clarity – and that is good for all of us – even adults! 

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