I have recently been enamored with the art of golfing. It all grew out of a friendship, the kind of connection that opens up something new in us. I first met Reverend Sylvia Sumter who is the head of Unity Church in Washington DC, when she was a guest on our daily radio show, America Meditating. Then she attended our retreat center, Peace Village, in the Catskills mountains of New York. But I never would have guessed that I would be meeting her more and that she would become the one chosen by destiny to introduce me to golfing. Historically, I have always thought that golfing was the most boring sport! I am learning how wrong I was. It was something Rev. Sumter said which no one has ever told me, she said, "Golfing is mystical Sister Jenna, and very spiritual!" Something struck me in those words. I said, "Really?"
One day, during a packed agenda of service, not uncommon in my world, Sylvia called me and asked, "Would you like to come golfing?" To her surprise I said, "YES!" "Really?" She replied. I said, "I am on my way." I drove happily to the course with no expectation, reflecting on her intriguing words, 'Golfing is mystical.' I was thrilled to be trying something new and I valued her, for inviting me and wishing for me to find the joy in something she loved dearly. I arrived to the golf course in the America Meditating Radio Mini Cooper, with our eight-pound service puppy, Happi. When Sylvia watched me walked toward her, wearing my white sari, with Happi by my side, and a big smile, she said "Well, you really are ready to play golf!"
As we rode in the golf cart up to the first hole, I noticed how much I was loving being out on the turf, and allowing that mystical breeze to flow through my long white sari, Happi's ever present effervescent approach towards life being a puppy. I followed Sylvia out to the where I would first know what it was to golf. I watched her in trust, and first allowed my inner world to experience the moment, the vibe, the skill, and more than anything, the newness.
Then it was my turn. I took a club, breathed, felt it, then, I swung that club and my sari blew up in the air instead of the ball! I stepped back, appreciated Sylvia not laughing at how strangely funny that scene might have been. I breathed in again, felt it, and swung, and alas, I hit it! I was so thrilled and so was Sylvia and the caddy whom I never got to know. As we approached every par I kept remembering what she said, it was a mystical experience and I love the world of mysticism. So, before I would swing, I understood how important it was to feel, breathe, then swing and know it will be fine.
A few days later, I was all caught into the golf fever! That's all I wanted to do. And, now I practice regularly outside and when I get even an hour or two, I just wish to get into the mystical vibe and then swing! I am now a PRO in the process; P for patient, R for ready, and O for optimistic. I love the turf and the practice it offers. The following is my interpretation of what it means to be a PRO, on the course and in life.
1. Primary Grip: This is so important because it represents how I the soul sit inside my skin. Holding on to the club where I check my capability in holding on to my truth and power with a little looseness, enough to move what I want as far and accurate as I want.
2. Position: Gently bent, back aligned, feet apart, balanced and ready to support the arms and swing with accuracy. This represents for me my spiritual balance. How much I serve me, the world, and God. It's suppose to feel right, easy, relaxed, aligned in your zone to allow our true selves to emerge.
3. Focus: If I do not know where I need to go or what I need to see, I will never feel my journey. To focus is not to see what everyone sees, but to see what you see. My focus represents being centered behind my eyes, knowing the soul sits there and from that place I will see how far and deep I believe in who I am or have been.
4. Breathe: Then the breath, that moment when silence meets you right before the action is about to be performed to make magic or gain an opportunity to humble you to realize I can always know more and be more. It is the steps I take every day and every moment that indeed get me there.
5. The Swing: Many of us attempt to begin here, but in reality much needs to happen before we swing, take action in our lives. Once we've done the prior work, this step is about letting go and trusting ourselves. It is about knowing that I tried my best, and in the end that is all that matters. It is in that millimeter of a second that I realize how powerful are the 86,400 seconds I have every day to make something out of me.
6. The Walk: The stroll of satisfaction to allow me to appreciate life is a beautiful journey. Smell the turf, love the people you meet along the way, know that no two days of playing are ever the same, but everyday offers so much for us to celebrate.