Meditation Stories: Jirod Webb
“May I be free from suffering. May I be at peace.” These are the words that Jirod Webb, a Certified Yoga Instructor, repeats throughout his guided meditation classes. He teaches in multiple locations throughout the Tampa Bay area, including Metropolitan Ministries and juvenile detention centers, as he finds it imperative to spread love and peace to these demographics. His meditation journey began in the Dominican Republic in 2016. During this time, he found a deep sense of inner peace once he realized that being kind to one’s self is not a behavior that is typically ingrained in men. Jirod preaches that the practice of positive self-talk during loving-kindness meditation translates to kindness to those around us. This practice allows loving-kindness to seep into our subconscious, allowing us to be more patient with ourselves and others.
Loving-kindness meditation involves sending goodwill, benevolence, and positive intentions towards yourself and others in combination with the breath. Although many meditation teachers emphasize the importance of sitting upright during the practice due to energy flow in the body, Jirod preaches that it is okay to lay down. Jirod states, “breath supersedes that alignment.” He also says that the breath can calm the nervous system and create other therapeutic sensations in the body. In his classes, he begins by giving his students the permission to lay down, which prioritizes breathwork. Then, he invites students to come to a seated position once the connection to the breath is more controlled.
Once participants tap into the breath, Jirod repeats the aforementioned statement “may I be free from suffering. May I be at peace.” Borrowed from a guided meditation book, the phrases open up a deeper conversation with ourselves. Participants start by letting go of the negative. People hopefully can admit that there is something that we can improve in their lives and know “to let go of something. What are [people] making room for? Peace.” Jirod explained how yogic philosophy teaches that all of us have suffered (or are suffering) from something that we have caused ourselves.This suffering comes from unnecessary expectations and the comparisons we create in our lives. By accepting this truth, we are able to admit that we need more peace in our lives.
Jirod entertains all of these elements throughout his guided meditation classes. Beginning with the breath, he encourages the connection of the mind to the body. Jirod repeated the loving-kindness phrases slowly and continuously throughout his classes, encouraging a connection of the words to the breath and to a unique meaning to each individual. Throughout the classes, Jirod will play singing bowls to stimulate the vagus nerve (the longest nerve in the body that releases serotonin and dopamine). Jirod also discussed his connection to African history and descent. Sound healing was used in Egyptian times, taking advantage of the water vibrations within the human body. He hopes to spread this love and hope and feels it is his duty to teach principles of yoga and meditation to people who have lost their way. In addition to the studios and locations mentioned above, Jirod will start teaching in a local jail soon.
Follow Jirod Webb on Instagram here @passportwebb
If you’re in Tampa, FL, schedule a class with Jirod here https://bellaprana.com/