Hello and welcome! This is my – John McInroy, Bodhi, Sipho, whatever you know me by – new digital home!

And here is my first blog post! I’d love to share some insights and stories with you from 2018. Thank you for all your support along the way.

Umuntu Ngumuntu Ngabantu: I am because you are.

reflection

I’m writing this from New York City. I never would have imagined being here let alone finding “stillness” after an intense year of feeling like being constantly on the move. I’m here for 6 months doing a full time advanced Jivamukti yoga teaching apprenticeship with a special teacher and human being in Jersey City. This was one morning as the sun came up over Central Park. 

being barefoot

In Byron Bay being barefoot is part of the uniform!! In fact you are more likely to be asked why you are wearing shoes than not wearing them! However I did get asked a lot of questions, have many conversations and get many funny looks all over the world.
I love this saying:
“Wearing shoes to the feet is like being blindfolded to the eyes.” Anon
And I’ve been reading the Eckhart Tolle book, New Earth;

Body awareness not only anchors you in the present moment, it is the doorway out of the prison of the ego. It also strengthens the immune system and the body’s ability to heal itself.”

Best is to experience this for yourself, don’t take mine or anyone’s word for it! All I will say is try being anywhere else but in the present moment whilst being barefoot. Especially in cities! The photo is of me and my ma together in London on the tube!

chill out

A dear friend of mine asked me for some advice as she is navigating some major changes in her life and integrating them into her life in particular regarding the people she loves who know her to be in a different way. I said be like this dude!
My sister and I spotted him chilling in the front lawn of someone’s home in the town of Woolgooga, NSW, Australia, only a few hundred meters from the main line of shops.

julie and the ocean

I am not a strong swimmer at all. Julie took me swimming in the ocean at Byron Bay. 
“Just relax and keep breathing. Be present and alert. It’s all you can do. The rest is out of your control anyway. When you do the ocean will support you”.
 It was an AHA moment realizing how we keep “waves that have passed” active and heavy in our lives way after they have gone by thinking about them and in doing so find it hard to relax and breathe, and allow the universe to support us.

 

family

“If you think you’re enlightened go spend a week with your family” Ram Dass
I’m feeling so grateful that I got the opportunity to surprise my mom and dad (with a bit of help from my sister!) so that me, my sis and my parents could all be together for the first time in 10 years.
I truly believe that acceptance of each other and just quietly being (the change) is the most effective way to change the world and our family will most definitely provide the mirror for us to see how we are doing!
Thank you mom, dad and Kath for accepting me as I am. I certainly hope I can be as accepting to you all as you are to me. I apologize for all the times I have fallen short of this with you. I love you!

the jesper effect

A Swedish man asked me if he and his two kids could sit on the same bench as me at an outside cafe along the water in Stockholm. He was very hesitant at first. I was using my phone and decided to put it down. I said “of course!”. The two kids went straight onto their phones. The man, who I discovered was called Jesper, and I started to talk and ended up sharing a great deal of intimacy and are in touch to this day. Somehow this moment was a meaningful spark for me to let go of as many things that is practical that take me away from being here and magical moments like this.
In the spirit of barefootbeing and direct experiences I wish to let go of social media and try exist more here and less somewhere else!
Since I started my book tour in February I worked out I have spent on average 5 hours per day on instagram trying to promote, connect and often fighting loneliness late at night in an unfamiliar place. Over 6 months this is about 900 hours. Imagine what this equates to over a year, a lifetime? Malcolm Gladwell famously created the 10,000 hour principle and it often seems like there isn’t enough time to be able to dedicate 10,000 hours to anything. I’m pretty confident most of us have broken the 10,000 hour mark on social media since it came into being. I certainly have. (If you have an iPhone, go to settings, screen time and you can see how much time you spend on each app! I’m sure other phones also have something similar! It’s scary!!) Imagine how many Jesper’s I may have missed or they missed me? In a moment of clarity, I couldn’t help feeling that I should invest in one Jesper a day (invest in being present) vs 100s or even 1000s of digital likes and connections. It’s almost like in today’s world we are programmed to be alert and always striving for what is not important, what is outside of ourself whilst becoming inattentive to the experiences that really matter. Experience itself. I believe it’s harder to get to know what you really want, what you feel and to make choices that oppose the status quo when you constantly have subliminal and often times very direct messages trying to guide and manipulate your actions.
Most people don’t inhabit a living reality, but a conceptualized mindmade one.”
Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth
My intentions on social media were really good and it wasn’t all bad (it is an amazing tool!) but I want to experiment by using these hours to sing, to play harmonium, to learn a new language, for yoga, to laugh, to cry, to share intimacy with a loved one, with a stranger, to rest, to breathe, to be. As much as it seems I can’t do without it (how will I ever find people to come to a retreat with me, a yoga class etc etc all the usual fears which I am not immune from!) it feels like the real magic for me is here and the vibrations of practicing being here will travel the furthest. You ever get the feeling that the more you try to be heard, the less people hear? And the less valuable you feel?
I am going to deactivate ALL my social media accounts for one year from 1 Dec 2018 to 1 December 2019 and experience how it is without it!

ferdinand

The fighting bull who refused to fight. The status quo said that the bull had to fight. There was simply no other way. Ferdinand refused to believe that and found a way through non-resistance and non-violence. It’s such a beautiful, inspiring film! Perhaps non-resistance, non-violence is the most effective way to inspire fundamental change towards a more peaceful world? Perhaps it is the only way?
 
We have to stop fighting for love. We have to stop fighting. We just have to love. I am so grateful for this lesson and realizing that violence whether it be through actions, words or thoughts is still violence and is more likely to perpetuate rather than resolve the matter you wish to change.
I would love to hear from you!
Take care!

HUGE love!

barefootbeing

Author barefootbeing

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Join the discussion 14 Comments

  • Marty Poole says:

    Molo.

  • Nadja Nathan says:

    Hi John, such a wonderful moment to read about you and your life. Let’s meet somewhere, fellow traveller. From Holy Arunachala , Tiruvanammalai I send you love

    Nadja

  • Eugenie Halkema says:

    Hi John,

    Eug here.

    Nice to read your words again. There is such a realness to them. You’ve done a lot of soul searching these past few months, have’nt you?

    Eckhart Tolle ‘s teachings are awesome. They changed my life. Have retrieved it from the bookshelf to reread. My son is 15 months old now, it’s amazing to see how he lives totally from one moment to the next. If he falls, he cries for a moment, but a second later totally forgets, and is back in a state of pure bliss. I learn so much from him everyday. Funny how life and ‘growing up’ knocks that out of a person. I hope I can show him differently.

    Have you heard about Wim Hof? I feel like you two should meet 🙂

    You’ve inspired me to come off social media, one year, im doing it!!!

    Love Eug

  • Rick Salmon says:

    Bodhi my brother: Congratulations on creating Barefootbeing; a digital footprint of your lovely presence. I look forward to reading more about your adventures here. Keep your feet and your heart bare. – RICK

  • Christina says:

    Huge love returning to you Bodhi, sincerely from Berlin…bouncing joy and breathing with you into this life and (y)our stories. love the care in how you share.
    rippling more smiles : ) sssss

  • Steve Williams says:

    Hi John, we met on a flight from South Africa. The yoga course sounds amazing. Your influence is felt in my Tai Chi class. I always quote you at the start: “breathe more, think less”.
    Have a great time in New York!
    Steve

  • Dzvinka Kachur says:

    Looking forward to seeing you back in south africa 😉

  • Karl says:

    Great Post John
    What a wonderful story
    Will definitely be following your posts and your journey
    Looking forward to more

  • Thamar says:

    Well said Bodhi! What a beautiful and fitting website too! I can feel it’s gentleness. Good luck with no social media thing as a former addict (okay maybe recovering addict ) I can only imagine how hard it will be but I’m sure I’m time you’ll simply thrive without it! You’ve inspired me to at least try stay off my phone in public and make connections or smile at strangers instead! Baby steps! – Love Tham

  • Jane says:

    Beautiful. Present and grounded. Love is in all of us if we let it be.
    Ferdinand the bull – he is a beautiful being😊

  • Langa Khanyile says:

    I absolutely love the man you have and are becoming Maccers, it is inspiring to see the love of transformation and the transformation of love into higher realities.

  • Dina says:

    Love the flow of the writing, and the cute pictures with your parents!

  • Amir Jaan - Ol says:

    Love You Man 🦁♥️ Looking forward to sharing more time together 2019 my brother

  • Tasia says:

    Sipho,

    What a pleasure it was meeting you this morning, your energy has stayed with me. Looking forward to reading more <3

    Sli

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