Category Archives: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers

27
February

“The Wee Folk” Elementals ~ A Magical Way to Play With Your Chakras

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers, Newsletter
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If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson: There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system. Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body. Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine. Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there. Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus. In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

 

“The Wee Folk” Elementals ~ A Magical Way to Play With Your Chakras

 

In honor of St. Patrick’s day in this month of March, I started this newsletter (for the “full newsletter” click here) with the story of my magical, childhood book on Fairies and Elves finding its way back to me (with  the help of Amazon). In this “Chakrascope” section, let’s touch upon the “Wee Folk” one more time! My regular readers know I believe in the magic and encourage others to be open to it. It’s all energy—Albert Einstein would agree.

Where magic is concerned, there is always an initial decision, an initial willingness to let it enter your life. If that is not there neither is magic. ~ Neil Gaiman

Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it. ~ Roald Dahl

That’s the thing with magic. You’ve got to know it’s still here, all around us, or it just stays invisible for you. ~ Charles de Lint

“If you do not believe in magic, your life will not be magical.  Magic, like the power of Stonehenge, is part of the unknowable—that which you cannot describe, but which exists and makes your life extraordinary.” –The Power Deck, The Cards of Wisdom, by Lynn V. Andrews.

When our ancestors encountered or experienced magical energies, they gave it their own “name” as an identifier. In Yoga, the Chakras are energy centers in the body storing life force / prana / chi / energy.  Re-read the opening paragraphs to this section for more details. I repeat this section every newsletter as a touch-base reminder reference.

Your energy centers / chakras have a corresponding element in nature, as do your Ayurvedic Doshas. In the Vedic sciences, Jyotish (astrology) is given special importance. This science also corresponds to the elements. Sometimes Archangels take on this role:  for instance Michael, Archangel of the Sun, is linked with Fire, and Gabriel, the Archangel of the Moon, with Water. Each direction has a corresponding element. One system connects the North with Earth, East with Air, South with Fire and West with Water. Feng Shui also uses the elements. The list goes on. The elements are considered to be the building blocks of life. Throughout history we have continually referenced the elements as a way to make sense of our world.

Did you know that the elements correspond to the faerie realm? In Ireland, the “Wee Folk” are part of their historical heritage:

“The Irish Folklore Commission (Coimisiún Béaloideasa Éireann in Irish) was set up in 1935 by the Irish Government to study and collect information on the folklore and traditions of Ireland.

Originally founded and directed by James Hamilton Delargy, it eventually finished in 1971. Its roles were superseded by the Department of Irish Folklore in University College, Dublin which has since served as a repository of the data collected, including the Irish Folklore Collection.”

It is said those that can see the “Wee Ones” are those that stay “close to the elements” of nature—who relate to the landscape. Perhaps if we all made it a point to connect with nature on a daily basis, like our bodies are meant to, understanding the energies of the elements would not be such a foreign subject.

Can you open yourself up to the possibility that when our ancestors encountered the “Wee Folk”, they were experiencing energy? Your crystal watch runs on the energy of that crystal. You don’t consider that woo-woo, do you? Your microwave uses energy to heat your food. It’s scientifically proven that everything is energy. Nothing is really solid. Some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies.

The elements of nature are considered the building force of the Universe. Now there’s some energy! The elements also make their appearance in the world of the “Little People” as “Elementals”: There’s an elemental spirit of the Earth, Air, Fire, and Water.

“Rather than being creatures with a permanent form, the elementals are the forces or energies that in nature and magic give shape to living things and bring thoughts and desires into actuality, for example seeds into flowers and trees…They take on a particular form for a particular task…The elemental beings, as manifestations of these forces, are believed to occupy a kingdom between the material and spiritual plane and so act as a bridge between the two dimensions. The four elements can be regarded as one of the focused energy sources that for centuries were believed to be the building blocks of life.” A Complete Guide to Faeires & Magical Beings, by Cassandra Eason.

I’ve offered many ways to “work with” your chakras in this Chakascope section. How about “playing with” your chakras instead? Maybe channeling your inner child / playful side will manifest the energy you’re looking for? It’s worth a try. Don’t you think? Just let it be fun! Remember fun?  Just for today, try summoning the energy of the Little People / Wee Folk / Faerie to awaken your chakras.

First chakra—earth element—Gnomes are considered to be the spirit of the earth, as well as leprechauns, dwarves and the sidhe. I have a friend who collects gnomes and likes to imagine them coming to life in the evening much like the movie, Gnomeo and Juliet. Point being—get outside and connect with nature, plant a garden and decorate it with gnomes. If you’re feeling more playful, meditate near your gnome collection outside, or perhaps near your favorite tree envisioning the roots below (tree roots are often considered home to the earth elementals) to connect to earth energy.

Second chakra—water element—Mermaids, undines, selkies, among others, are considered the spirit of water. Mermaids and water fairies appear across several cultures. Why is that? They can’t all be wrong! Do you like the ocean? Do you love to swim? Do you consider the “energy” of the water to be magical? Then play in your magic. Swim, go boating, run through the sprinklers, drink lots and lots of water. Go with the flow of life and let go of your worries. Hey, it’s Easter soon—celebrate Dyngus day! This is Easter Monday and in the Polish tradition (have you checked my last name?), this is the day to sprinkle each other with water—use squirt guns, buckets—whatever inspires you. In my hometown of South Bend, IN, Dyngus Day is celebrated much like a Polish St. Patrick’s day.

Third chakra—fire element—salamanders and fire sprites are considered fire element “Wee Folk”. This is the element of heat and light. Energetically this connects you to your desire in life. What is your passion? Take one small step toward it. What’s holding you back? Build a fire, write what’s “blocking you” on a piece of paper, and burn it. Not sure what your passion is? Stare into a flame and dwell on the question. Your answer is within.

Four chakra—air element—Sylphs and flying sprites are known as the spirit of air / wind. They may appear as butterflies or dragonflies (but those of us in the know know better, don’t we?). Notice them in your environment and connect to them mentally. They are associated with transformation. What is your transformation plan? This is your breath of life chakra, your heart chakra. It’s spring! How can you transform yourself into the butterfly of your choice? Move through your world in a new way—drive a new way to work, use your non-dominant hand once a day, notice which foot you lead with and switch, shake it up! Practice deep breaths. There are many breathwork practices you can try. (If breathwork interests you, please see the meditation/breathwork class I offer.)

Fifth chakra—ether or space element—some say “mineral” element as well. Since historically there is no element in the world of the “Wee Folk” associated with “ether, space, or mineral”, connect to your fifth / throat chakra by expression. The “Little People” love joyful dance and song. They understand the importance of celebration! Sing and dance daily! Use your throat chakra to sing as you dance to your favorite tunes. An uplifted spirit attracts the “Little People’s” energy.

Sixth chakra—nature element. The “elementals” are all about nature! Go outside! Enliven your body by connecting to nature! Embrace the outside! This is your “third eye” chakra. Using your intuition uses all of your senses and zones you into what feels right. Our circadian rhythms are balanced when you spend time outside. What feels right when you feel balanced? Everything!

Seventh chakra—spirit element—“Spirit is the energy that connects all the elements. Everything in this and other worlds has a spirit that makes it magical. As a result, spirit is often considered the fifth element or the union of all the other elements. This union forms the divine quintessence. Within fairy ritual, spirit is a key component and dwells in the center of the circle, symbolizing its role as the connector of all things.” The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Elves and Fairies by Sirona Knight.

In the chakra system, the seventh chakra is considered “enlightenment”—connection to the Universe / Spirit / God. I can think of no better way than to work with all of the elementals, oh so briefly described above, to connect to your Universe. Enlighten yourself through daily ritual with the “Little People”.

This was a brief, playful list of suggestions. Use your imagination!

March 2012 Elf tree Gooseberry with picasso quote

The following Irish blessing incorporates the elements and is one of my absolute favorite blessings. If I weren’t Polish, I’d want to be Irish. Enjoy!

May the road rise up to meet you, May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
And the rains fall soft upon your fields.
And, until we meet again
may God hold you in the palm of His hand. ~ Traditional Gaelic blessing.

 

23
September

Chakras outside the body / Transpersonal and Subpersonal Chakras / Soul Star Chakra, Incarnator and Earth Star chakras

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
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If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson: There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body. Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine. Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there. Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus. In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Image Credit:  http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/14/7_Chakras.JPG

I love synchronicity, don’t you? As I started to write this newsletter on ancestral healing, my “wall” on Facebook contained this message: “You are not responsible for your ancestors not completing their mission on earth. You have your own mission(s). Call on Archangel Mariel to help remove this link/pattern in your soul star chakra.” This post linked to another one which talked about ancestral healing. I’ve learned to go where the messages in my life lead me. Chakras are a passion of mine (as you can probably tell from my newsletters), so this post really caught my attention since it hit upon a subject I had just started writing about. The Universe is in constant conversation with you. Believe it!

While I knew there were more than the “usual” seven chakras/energy centers in the body, I never really drilled down on the names and their purpose. The “soul star chakra” is a transpersonal chakra located above the crown chakra and is associated with spiritual connection between individuals, and as mentioned in the Facebook post that brought this chakra to my attention front and center, it speaks to the completion of your ancestor’s mission on earth.

Researching transpersonal chakras took me to subpersonal chakras which are five chakras located below the feet. Two subpersonal chakras caught my attention in regards to ancestral healing and the hip issues I was having five years ago (mentioned in the opening section) when I visited my ancestral homeland for the first time: The incarnator chakra and the earth star chakra.

The incarnator chakra—about 40 cm below the feet—contains the energy connecting us to our ancestry, our tribe/clan.
The earth star chakra anchors the body to Mother Earth and the physical realm. It holds the grounding cord and is the source of Life energy. It holds the current incarnation’s ancestry and race history, the issues of its generation, past life and family issues, karmic issues and family diseases. All family history, unprocessed issues, secrets and cycles are past along through the earth star. The issues in your life could be caused from past life experience or trauma suffered from an ancestor!”

One of my favorite chakra experts, Cyndi Dale, confirms the concept of additional energy centers/chakras located outside the body. She believes you can create more change working with energy centers located outside the body because you are tuned to more powerful energies than what is contained within the physical body. There’s a reason Mayan’s refer to chakras as “power centers”! Positioned above and below the physical body, they connect you to the spiritual realm and earth energy.

She refers to a 10th chakra located about a foot and a half under the ground which corresponds to the incarnator chakra mentioned early. The incarnator chakra “opens to your genetic patterns, to your legacy in terms of family history, to the history of the earth in general, and links you into the environment and nature.”

As I’ve mentioned in previous Chakrascopes, each chakra vibrates to a different light/color spectrum. The bottom half of the body vibrates at denser, lower vibrations/colors and the upper half of the body vibrates at higher frequencies/colors. The 10th chakra/incarnator “underneath the feet is working with a lot of infrared energy, which is very powerful for energizing and healing the physical body. For instance, if someone is dealing with a genetic abnormality, I work with the 10th chakra. That energy center actually helps to program our DNA, and we can work with it to help with hereditary issues.” ~ Cyndi Dale.

Ancestral healing deals with the “DNA” of our ancestors memories—we inherit these memories and we embody there hereditary issues. Working with and finding ways to strengthen the incarnator/10th chakra is essential ancestral healing. As Cyndi explains further, there is more than one road:

“There are two chakras that are found above the head. The 8th chakra is an inch or so over the crown. It opens to the outer worlds and the Akashic records (a recording of everything you’ve ever done, thought, or said). But also up here you access parallel present realities and potential futures. This is the place of the shaman and the mystic. It’s up here that you can open your perceptions to different universes, time periods, dimensions. 8th chakra practices are incredibly effective for gathering information, working with spirits, and bringing in healing properties and healing energies from the shamanic realms.

Positioned above it is the 9th chakra, which is a beautiful energy center. It contains the seat of our soul. So whereas the 10th, which is underneath the ground, has our physical genetics, on the opposite side is the energy center that contains our “soul genetics”—encoded information about your higher purpose and spiritual destiny. (The approximate location and description of the 9th chakra corresponds with the soul star chakra mentioned earlier.) We can perceive this information as numerical symbols, geometric patterns, or our own unique archetypal codes. If we’re not getting any benefit working on the physical plane, that may mean it’s time to go up and work with the soul patterns through the 9th chakra.”

The relationship between the incarnator (10th) and the soul star (9th) chakras speaks to your ancestor’s history manifesting in your physical body and how clearing the patterns in one may enable you to strengthen the other. They’re like book-end partners that “have each other’s back” so to speak. Clearing a block in either may enable you to manifest your life’s purpose, your destiny.

As I’ve highlighted in many newsletters, the “well-known” seven chakras relate to the endocrine centers of the body. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system. The chakras outside the body also relate to the body via the endocrine system. The incarnator (or tenth chakra as Cyndi Dale calls it) works with the bones, bone marrow, and any disease related to the bones. Remember it also contains the energy connecting us to our ancestory, our tribe/clan. As I addressed in the opening section, more than one person suspected the hips issues I experienced on my first trip to my ancestral homeland had to do with ancestral healing needed.

“People sometimes say that’s (bone issues) not an endocrine gland, but there’s research that’s now proving that the bones and bone marrow produce hormones. The 9th chakra above the head interfaces with the diaphragm. This is why so many yoga and spiritual practices emphasize breath work: the breath brings oxygen to the body and is a vessel for spirit.” Cyndi Dale.

I’ve always said my “go-to” chakra when I’m feeling out of sorts is the root chakra—the grounding chakra. I need to work on grounding regularly to feel whole again. Well it makes sense that the incarnator chakra being below the root chakra which is weaker for me also needed some tweaking.

I love the idea of the incarnator chakra and the soul star chakra being book-ends, or different possible avenues to work through your personal issues. So if you’re stronger or weaker in either the physical (lower) or spiritual (higher) chakras, you can use your stronger power centers to help balance the weaker ones—Yin and Yang—as above so below. When I meditate and use breathwork, everything feels better. My weaker root chakra benefits from a stronger spiritual chakra meditation practice.

How about you? What is your “chakra personality”? Which bookend is stronger for you personally? Maybe you’re stronger in the lower chakras—so do something physical to spur your creative solutions. Maybe you’re stronger in the upper chakras, so try breathwork, meditation, and other mind/body activities like yoga, meditation, tai chi, and pilates, among others. Work with your strengths to balance your body. Do more yoga.

Breathwork and Visualization: 

Ho’oponopono means to “make right” and is the Hawaiian word for forgiveness. A big part of Ho’oponopono is that “peace begins with me”. Since my cousin’s daughter found us on Facebook in 2009, we have been in touch constantly. Her family’s connection with us and her visit here last year started the healing process of our extended families. Our visit back to Poland this year continued to “make right” the broken family relations. This Ho’oponopono practice believes when a person becomes ill, the illness was caused by anger or lack of forgiveness in the family. They believe that healing could only come with complete forgiveness of the whole family.

I can’t really say why my hip did what it did five years ago (see opening section), but perhaps it was an indicator or messenger of the need for healing in my ancestral line. My Polish family has given me a sense of security, of roots, of history and heritage. “Family tree” has a whole new meaning to me now.  If my “coming home” to Poland to reconnect with family aided my ancestors further down the line (and up the line for that matter), I consider myself truly blessed.

Using the Ho’oponopono ritual for your ancestral healing:  Sitting in easy-seated pose (highlighted in this month’s yoga pose section), begin to take deep belly breaths. Exhale whatever you’re done with, letting it go energetically. Visualize with great detail the good you’d like to see in your life and inhale that into the cells of your body. Let each inhalation nourish you physically as you breathe in fresh, pure oxygen. Silently repeat the mantra phrases associated with Ho’oponopono to yourself: “I Love you, I’m sorry, Please forgive me, and Thank you.” Breathe in your intention. Breathe out forgiveness.

“The apology is an acknowledgement that we are sorry for whatever it is that we (or our ancestors before us) have done to cause the adverse circumstance to take place…We ask for forgiveness with the absolute certainty that it has already been granted…Your “thank you” is the acknowledgement that your petition has been heard and acted upon–that is all.”

Affirmations

  •  “I Love you, I’m sorry, Please forgive me, and Thank you.” (Ho’oponopono ritual for ancestral healing)
  • I am at one with all life. *
  • I live in the awareness that we are one people, one planet. *
  • I open myself to experience the depths of my being. *
  • I am one with the forces of life. *
  • I am at peace knowing that I am protected and guided at all times. *
  • I connect with the highest, clearest vibrations of love in the universe. *
  • My path is made gentle and easy as I lift my spirit to the highest levels of awareness. *
  • I release my limited view of myself and attune to the oneness of all life. *
  • There is no separation between my love and the love in the universe; we are one. *
  • I connect with the energy of my ancestors and am strengthened by their spirit. Their roots are intertwined with mine. Together we are a single energetic force healing each other past, present, and future.
  • I am aware of my life’s lessons; I can overcome my patterns**

 

Source:

Diet and the incarnator/10th Chakra:

The incarnator (or tenth chakra, as Cyndi Dale calls it)works with the bones, bone marrow, and any disease related to the bones. So a diet rich in calcium and Vitamin D are good incarnator chakra foods.

Diet and the soul star /9th Chakra:

The 9th chakra above the head interfaces with the diaphragm. This is why so many yoga and spiritual practices emphasize breath work: the breath brings oxygen to the body and is a vessel for spirit.” Cyndi Dale.

The right mix of nutrients in your diet can help you breathe easier. No single food will supply all the nutrients you need. A healthy diet has lots of variety.

Good sources of protein help maintain strong respiratory muscles. The best sources of protein are milk, eggs, cheese, meat, fish, poultry, nuts, and dried beans or peas.”

Timing of Meals:

Eating several small meals a day instead of two or three large ones can help you eat well and not feel uncomfortable. Here’s why: Your organs aren’t packed tightly inside your body. A muscular membrane, the diaphragm, is in the space between the lungs and the stomach. The diaphragm moves down and up as you breathe in and out. A full stomach presses up into the space below the diaphragm. This keeps the diaphragm from moving as far down as it should when you breathe in and your lungs don’t fill completely.

Try dividing your day’s food into 4 to 6 small meals. You can eat a small breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Then get the rest of your nutritional needs for the day by eating two or three between-meal snacks.”

Source: http://www.lung.org/lung-disease/copd/living-with-copd/nutrition.html

Diet and the earth star chakra:

The earth star chakra grounds us to Mother Nature. Grounding foods, such as those for the root chakra, include:
Root vegetables: carrots, potatoes, parsnips, radishes, beets, onions, garlic, etc.
Protein-rich foods: eggs, meats, beans, tofu, soy products, peanut butter
Spices: horseradish, hot paprika, chives, cayenne, pepper

Aromatherapy and the incarnator/10th Chakra:

  Lemongrass essential oil is rejuvenating to the bones—among others.

Aromatherapy and the soul star /9th Chakra:

 Eucalyptus oil as well as peppermint, myrtle, and copaiba oils that support respiratory health.

Aromatherapy and the earth star Chakra:

 Root chakra oils apply here: Sandalwood, Patchouli, Grounding,Cedarwood, Ylang Ylang, among others..

Young Living Essential Oils™ for the Root Chakra :
Root Chakra (Gonads) / “I KNOW” /
Element: EARTH
Security, survival, trust, relationships with money, home, and job. Essential oils to open and balance this chakra are Sandalwood, Patchouli, Grounding, Cedarwood, Ylang Ylang.  Rub one drop on base of spine and then rub hands together and inhale 3x.

~ Bottoms of Feet ~ Since the incarnator chakra is below the ground, I’m adding the Young Living Oil recommendation for oils on the bottom of the feet:
Always ground yourself before any type of meditation or spiritual  reflection/meditation. Essential oils that assist with this are Grounding and Valor. Take one drop per foot; rub on bottom of foot  and on big toes.  Inhale!

 

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Crown and Root Chakra:

 

Since the incarnator & soul star chakras are closest to the crown chakra, and earth star chakra is closest to the root chakra, I’m highlighting gems associated with the well-known chakras below.

Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras. For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy. Nothing is really solid. Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”. As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Recently, I found this great write-up on the subject of crystal therapy at Ashley Leavy’s Love & Light Crystal Therapies website:

Since both crystals and the human body have an inherent energetic blueprint, it is thought that the energies of the body can be balanced and healed by introducing the energetic vibration of a crystal into the body’s energy field. Their perfect forms are a metaphor for the balance and perfection that humans search for in their own lives.  Using crystals in this way can actually help to repair energetic imbalances within the ethereal body. Through entrainment, the human body will begin to mimic the perfectly stable, balanced energy of the crystal.  For this reason, crystal healing can be performed on anything that possesses an energy field, be it a person, a plant, an animal, or the environment.  The stable energetic vibrations from the crystals can be used to re-align and direct the flow of energy within the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual bodies, returning them to a state of health and wholeness. Listen to her amazing video on Crystals and the Human Energy Field here.

*Crystal Healing is not meant to replace conventional medicine, but rather to complement and enhance it. The information within this site is purely metaphysical in nature and is by no means medical. Crystal Healing should only be used with the understanding that it is not an independent therapy, but one that is a part of a holistic healing approach.

Some Root Chakra gems are:

Hematite—offers stress resistance; works as a protective shield (much like the knots!). Smoky Quartz—brings present focus, dissolves emotional blocks. Black Tourmaline—protects, calms and expels fear, best set in silver. Garnet—counters illusions; acts against depression, beats insecurity.

Some Crown Chakra gems are:

 Activates the Crown Chakra: Celestite & Blue Sapphire. Calms the Crown Chakra: Charoite, Sugilite, Luvulite. Balances the Crown Chakra: Clear Quartz, Amethyst. Source: The Chakra Bible by Patricia Mercier.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com. I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products (and her)!

Yoga poses for the Root Chakra:

All yoga poses essentially activate the chakras. Yoga without the connection of breath awareness is simply a stretching practice. So a consistent yoga practice stimulates all the chakras, as does the many breathwork practices outlined in the current and past newsletters.

Using a block between the thighs a couple of inches above the knees in various poses such as chair, or even throughout a sun salutation (hopping into plank and mountain vs. stepping is required) helps to activate the root chakra.

Some yoga poses to stimulate the Muladhara chakra and “draw up earth energy” include: Downward facing dog,  Chair pose (especially with the block mentioned in the previous paragraph), Cobbler’s pose (or as I like to refer to it: Butterfly pose), Mountain pose (add a mountain scene meditation—I like to remind my students that in life we often climb the infamous “mountain”—work, work, work, sweat, sweat, sweat—and you finally reach the top. Most of us don’t take the time to enjoy the view up here. We only see the next mountain looming, challenging, calling your name. Take time to enjoy this moment, this mountain you just climbed, and remember you are on top of the world. (Derived from my wonderful “I Hope You Dance” journal by Mark D. Sanders & Tia Sillers.)

Also, while in mountain pose, the act of pushing the “imaginary floor boards away with your feet” or “try to tear your yoga mat apart with your feet” activates the root chakra. Similarly adding foot lock in this pose stimulates the root chakra: (Lift the toes, spread them wide, plop them down. Feel the outer edges of your feet cup the mat.)

Tree pose (add a root visualization with roots coming out the soles of your feet to increase the root chakra energy, and Child’s pose (add a relaxing forehead roll from left to right: Rolling over the third-eye activates the pineal gland, releasing melatonin, and promotes a relaxed nervous system. Rolling over the forehead points activates the reflexology points for worrying.)

Yoga poses for the Crown Chakra:

As mentioned in the highlighted pose, yoga postures and breathwork are intended as preparation for meditation. They stimulate both the third-eye and crown chakras.

Yoga without the connection of breath awareness is simply a stretching practice. So a consistent yoga practice stimulates all the chakras, as does the many breathwork practices outlined in the current and past newsletters.

Although not necessarily yoga, “dancing connects us with the higher realms of the divine.” And “Meditation can help you connect with your inner self.” The Book of Chakras, Ambika Walters. Hare pose, Half Shoulderstand as well as Headstand—if they are in your practice, are also stimulating to the crown chakra. Dolphin Pose, is also considered a headstand prep and stimulates both the crown and third eye chakras.

Yoga Nidra is also an excellent way to induce a meditative state and calm your crown chakra.

The highlighted pose, easy seated pose, connects you to both the root chakra through the base of the spine, and the crown chakra when used as a meditation pose.

 

27
March

The Crown Chakra / (Sanskrit term: Sahasrara chakra)

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
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If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Image Credit: Anodea Judith and the website: www.SacredCenters.com

My opening section was about being aware of your constant connection to the sacred in your life—whether it’s during your yoga practice or while doing the dishes. It is through the energy of the crown chakra that we fully connect with our Source. It is through this connection that we become whole.

Experiencing the sacred in every aspect of your life reminds you that there is no place where God isn’t. I think we all innately believe that but we forget to look for it. We forget to communicate with our Source. We forget. But your Source never gives up on you! God is communicating with you all the time. You just forget to notice.

All you have to do to strengthen the connection is ask, and if you forget to ask, the Universe just might remind you to do just that! When you increase your conversation with Spirit, you activate your Crown Chakra.

Do you forget you are loved and cared about and the Universe wants to hear from you? There is nothing new with the concept of asking the Universe for a sign or message and expecting to receive an answer, but how many of you, I wonder, really expect to receive an actual answer? I think experience makes us all believers, don’t you? How about believing you’ll hear back at the get-go because you have faith in the unseen?

Blessed are those who believe and have not seen. ~ Jesus

I’ve often used the famous quote “You’ll see it when you believe it.” Do you think, perhaps, the biblical quote above refers to the blessings of then seeing what you believe because you believed?

I’m not sure when I started to receive messages “between sleep and awake”—the magical ‘tween time, but I’ve come to treasure the messages when they do come. My regular readers know this is how I came to call my business “Better Day Yoga” . Sometimes I go for months without a “message”, or so I think. Perhaps I’m not listening. I mean, why would the Universe, or anyone, take time to talk to you if you’re not paying attention, right? Are you “on alert” to the signs and messages your Source is sending you every day?

Maybe it was my lack of “being on alert” that caused the Universe to lose patience with me. It knows I sit up and take notice when a message comes in threes—so it delivered the message to ask for a message—three times.

The power of three

How many of you believe “things happens in threes”?  Three is a very auspicious number. Trinities appear in many of the world’s religions and cultures—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva; Mother, Maiden, Crone. The lucky “cat with nine lives” derives from the auspiciousness of three. Nine is composed of three trinities (9 = 3 x 3); and is considered to be “sacred three times”—the highest expression of sacred.

When asked for a lucky number, most pick either three or seven. We view and judge our world based upon threes—good, better, best; this, that, and the other; too warm, too cold, just right, etc. A trinity of sevens—777—is considered very lucky!

I, for one, sit up and take notice when something comes to me three times. Being intimately connected with all that I am and all that I do, my Creator knows this of me. I’ve often said that the Universe will communicate with you in the way most likely to be heard and accepted by you. We are each different and unique individuals with our own history and our own beliefs. Something meaningful to my history may not even make it on your radar.

The first message came to me through my usual inspirational, random readings from one of my favorite books:  Oracle Within by Dick Sutphen. This particular reading suggested that right before you go to sleep ask for dreams that will assist you in understanding what is holding you back. And here’s the part I like—it suggests asking that the dreams be received literally, not symbolically. (I remembered thinking, “I can ask that?! Why didn’t I think of that?! Well why wouldn’t you be able to ask for a clear answer? The Universe is, after all, an aspect of your Higher Self.)  Ask that you remember them immediately upon awakening and keep a pen and paper by the bedside for recording.

So that’s what I did. I asked what was holding me back. And, yes—right between sleep and awake the message came—and please know I don’t share this lightly. It said “Omit, not good enough.” Okay, okay. I’ll give you that. Most days I can be my own worst enemy. Hmmm. Do you think that might be holding me back? D’oh!

The second “message to ask for a message” came to me when curiosity got the better of me—as it often does—and I decided to click on a link I saw in the margin of one of my many newsletters. Yes—I do consider these moments a message as well. Why do you sometimes want to click the link and other times pass it by? Nothing is coincidence. I linked to what I considered a magical meditation practice. meant to connect your third eye chakra to your crown chakra allowing you to “connect to and communicate with your spiritual self.” (See the “Breathwork and Visualization below.) This became two Facebook posts on my Better Day Yoga page since the same web page had another suggestion in the column about asking for an answer:

1. Drink a small glass of water before going to sleep at night.
2. While sipping, close your eyes and focus on your Third Eye, the space between your eyebrows.
3. Think to yourself, “this is all I need to do to find the solution to the problem that I have in mind.”
4. Then finish the water.
5. When you wake up in the morning, repeat the process.

~

The synchronicity of similar messages hadn’t hit me yet—until it happened a third time. This time I wanted to find a reading to share during final relaxation/Savasana for my next yoga class. I turned to a new favorite book by one of my favorite chakra authors—Anodea Judith. She co-authored her new book, Creating on Purpose / The Spiritual Technology of Manifesting Through the Chakras with Lion Goodman:

“Deepak Chopra says that the Universe forms itself around your questions. It’s as if your question is a tagline typed into a cosmic search engine that then calls up all the appropriate sites where your question might be answered. It draws information to you.” Isn’t that a cool thought? And isn’t it exactly how it is?! Once you start expecting answers, they appear everywhere because you are aware. The authors suggest you craft your question during meditation, your shower, your drive to work, etc.; and send it out to the Universe. Then prepare yourself to receive it whenever and however it comes.

The “thump on the head” realization came to me as I was sharing this last reading with my students. It finally hit me—the Universe was reminding me, again, that it is in the asking that the messages increase.

So how about getting busy and doing some more asking? Okay? Got it! You don’t need to ration your conversations with the Universe. Treat Source like the old friend that it is. Invite a deeper awareness into your life. Deepak suggests you ponder a question each day. Start a conversation with your Guides—daily. Look and listen every day.

Trust that the Universe will deliver messages to you in ways that you personally will notice—just like you’d expect a good friend to do. Your connection and conversation with Source will grow exponentially once you become aware that everything is a message. Remember your connection. Your crown chakra will fill you with the energy of the Divine. Acknowledge your Divine Source and you will find your Guru within.

Breathwork and Visualization: 

Find a quiet spot and take a few moments to relax your body and mind with your breath. Inhale through the nose and exhale through the mouth—big, long, luscious complete breaths. Feel your shoulders relax with each exhale. You might even add the “Jnana mudra”: Connect index and thumb and extend the last three fingers of your hand with palms facing up. The author of this meditation, Ken Keicher, suggests this mudra closes your energy loop. Ken then asks you to “position your hands as if you are holding a ball of energy between your palms.”

Continue your breathwork for the entire session, allowing the rhythm of your breath to bring you to a meditative state. As you exhale, “visualize a stream of energy exiting through your Third Eye Chakra. The Chakra is, in effect, a ball of energy itself, with a channel through the center of it that allows energy transfer. Visualize this energy stream as being white. Repeat this process a few times.

When this has become comfortable, during your inhale, visualize drawing energy into your Higher Self through your Crown Chakra. Remember that your Crown Chakra is violet. Now you have established an inner energy loop, with energy coming in through your Crown Chakra and going out through your Third Eye Chakra. Continue this cycle for as long as you can focus, or if you are on a timed schedule, until you reach your time limit.

This particular meditation session is designed to allow you to connect to and communicate with your spiritual self. Through consistent and continuous daily practice, this increases your awareness, which, in turn, increases your energy frequency. When this channel of communication is open, your intuition and psychic abilities also increase.” Source: Ken Keicher. See some of Ken’s books on Kindle!

 

Affirmations

  • I live in the realm of cosmic consciousness.*
  • I am at one with all life. *
  • I live in the awareness that we are one people, one planet. *
  • I open myself to experience the depths of my being. *
  • I am one with the forces of life. *
  • I am at peace knowing that I am protected and guided at all times. *
  • I tune my will to that of infinite intelligence. *
  • I connect with the highest, clearest vibrations of love in the universe. *
  • My path is made gentle and easy as I lift my spirit to the highest levels of awareness. *
  • I release my limited view of myself and attune to the oneness of all life. *
  • There is no separation between my love and the love in the universe; we are one. *
  • Full of thankfulness, I receive the good that awaits me.**

Source:

  • *Chakras and Their Archetypes, Uniting Energy Awareness and Spiritual Growth, by Ambika Wauters.
  • ** Mudras , Yoga in your Hands by Gertrud Hirschi’s.

Diet and Crown Chakra: 

Since this Chakra about connecting to Source, developing awareness and a meditative state, a pure, light vegetarian diet is recommended. Detoxifying foods are also helpful for keeping lightness in the body.

Aromatherapy and the Crown Chakra:

The crown chakra enjoys frankincense, lavender, rosewood, and ylang ylang among others.

Young Living Essential Oils™ for the Crown Chakra :

Crown Chakra (Pineal Gland) / “I KNOW” /
Element: THOUGHT
Frankincense works immediately (as in, it begins working when you
open the cap) on opening the Pineal Gland, which many believe is the
connection that opens one to Spirit communication and communion with
your Higher Power.  Prayerfully anoint your crown with one drop neat
(direct application), put one drop on hands, activate the oil’s
frequency by “stirring” with fingertips clockwise 3x, cup hands over
nose/mouth; inhale 3x. (There’s the power of three again!)

http://www.younglivingsuccess.com/2010/05/-chakras-and-therapeutic-essential-oils.html

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Crown Chakra:

Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras. For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy. Nothing is really solid. Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”. As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Recently, I found this great write-up on the subject of crystal therapy at Ashley Leavy’s Love & Light Crystal Therapies website:

Since both crystals and the human body have an inherent energetic blueprint, it is thought that the energies of the body can be balanced and healed by introducing the energetic vibration of a crystal into the body’s energy field. Their perfect forms are a metaphor for the balance and perfection that humans search for in their own lives.  Using crystals in this way can actually help to repair energetic imbalances within the ethereal body. Through entrainment, the human body will begin to mimic the perfectly stable, balanced energy of the crystal.  For this reason, crystal healing can be performed on anything that possesses an energy field, be it a person, a plant, an animal, or the environment.  The stable energetic vibrations from the crystals can be used to re-align and direct the flow of energy within the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual bodies, returning them to a state of health and wholeness. Listen to her amazing video on Crystals and the Human Energy Field here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSZVyrGpy8g&feature=player_embedded

*Crystal Healing is not meant to replace conventional medicine, but rather to complement and enhance it. The information within this site is purely metaphysical in nature and is by no means medical. Crystal Healing should only be used with the understanding that it is not an independent therapy, but one that is a part of a holistic healing approach.

Some Crown Chakra gems are:  Activates the Crown Chakra: Celestite & Blue Sapphire. Calms the Crown Chakra: Charoite, Sugilite, Luvulite. Balances the Crown Chakra: Clear Quartz, Amethyst. Source: The Chakra Bible by Patricia Mercier.

For some of these and other great crown chakra stones, (Indigo Gabbro, Selenite, Amethyst, Lilac Lepidolite, Apophyllite) check out http://www.crystallinelightshop.com/collections/crystals-crown-chakra or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com. I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products (and her)! I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products (and her)!

Yoga poses for the Crown Chakra:

All yoga poses essentially activate the chakras. Yoga postures and breathwork are intended as preparation for meditation—stimulating both the third-eye and crown chakras.

Yoga without the connection of breath awareness is simply a stretching practice. So a consistent yoga practice stimulates all the chakras, as does the many breathwork practices outlined in the current and past newsletters.

Although not necessarily yoga, “dancing connects us with the higher realms of the divine.” And “Meditation can help you connect with your inner self.” The Book of Chakras, Ambika Walters. Hare pose, Half Shoulderstand as well as Headstand—if they are in your practice, are also stimulating to the crown chakra. This month’s highlighted pose, Dolphin Pose, is also considered a headstand prep and stimulates both the crown and third eye chakras.

Yoga Nidra is also an excellent way to induce a meditative state and calm your crown chakra. See the “Healthy News” section for more on the benefits of Yoga Nidra.

25
January

Root Chakra / (Sanskrit term: Muladhara Chakra) and the first granthi/knot: (Sanskrit term: Brahma Granthi)

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
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If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Image Credit:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Muladhara.png

I’ve been writing about the chakras since my premiere newsletter back in November 2009! Since the opening section talked about the knots/granthis, I thought I’d write a bit more about the knots and, in particular, the first knot which is located in the root chakra/muladhara chakra.

As mentioned in the opening section, Knots are considered “thresholds” where the energy gets stuck. When energy is stuck at the various thresholds, it develops a physical “pathology” specific to that area of the body. When the knots clear, we become “aligned with the truth of our nature, and the symptoms disappear.” (Source: Kundalini Rising. Exploring the energy of awakening by Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa, Andrew Newberg, Sivananda Rhada, Ken Wilber, and John Selby.)

The energy that is getting stuck is referred to as Kundalini energy. I wrote about Kundalini energy in my August 2011 newsletter. Here’s an excerpt from that newsletter:

“In Sanskrit, Kundalini means ‘life energy’. Known as the serpent energy in Hinduism, the first culture known to have labeled this mysterious force, kundalini is the natural divine energy inside of you. Your kundalini is the life force of your body that, when fully activated, leads to living as an enlightened sage.

If you were able to fully draw on your kundalini, the life force that lies within, what might you do? Well, you could lasso the stars and pull them to earth, plant your dreams in the soil and grow love, laugh in the wind, and heal the world. You could write your name in the water, author your life, and sing with the Divine.

At some level, kundalini has already been accomplishing all this and more for you. You’ve already been exercising its enchantment to become the great person you are. As mysterious as its name and as magical as its origin, kundalini has been pulsing in your body since you were conceived, performing tasks as basic as igniting the electricity in your cells and as elusive as attracting others to you.

Kundalini is a god energy, and as such, it nourishes your uniqueness and upholds your sacred vocation. Since it originates from the Divine Source, it also interconnects you with all living beings, as well as with the Divine itself. Because of these connections, to tap into your kundalini is to open the channel to your intuition, to begin to hear the messages in the wind, to receive revelations colored with inspiration, and to know the unknowable. In short, kundalini allows you to be you—and encourages others to be themselves.  Kundalini Divine Energy & Divine Life by Cyndi Dale.

How many of you want more of that?!  “When kundalini wakes up, it primarily travels upward through our various energy bodies and channels, parts of the energetic anatomy that create and sustain our physical body. Energy is information that vibrates, and guess what kundalini does? It shakes up the energy of our body, mind, and soul.

The kundalini first rises through energy channels along our spine. These energy channels are called the nadis, and as the kundalini climbs through them, it activates the seven chakra energy centers also positioned along our spine, our center axis, and connecting our spiritual and physical selves.” Kundalini Divine Energy & Divine Life by Cyndi Dale.

I’ve read that the knots are there has a protective shield—a circuit breaker, if you will. Each knot will only open up to let the energy release if you are able to handle it energetically—mentally, physically and spiritually. I equate it to a divine “high five”. As you become more and more connected with your true spiritual nature, and as you take care of your energy body, your knots are free to release their potential energy. It reminds me of the quote on the following picture.

 “If God Brings You To It, He Will Bring You Through It.”


Image Credit:  http://images.firstcovers.com/covers/userquotes/i/if_god_brings_you_to-5576.jpg

Or “God will never give you anything you can’t handle”. You life is a series of stepping stones leading you to the next best thing. You can’t skip a lesson because you need to have the knowledge and stability of the previous lesson to be able to fully digest, understand, and accept the next one. The knots are here to make sure the energetic way is clear and that you’re ready to take it on.

“Following the path toward fulfilling my spirit…all other journeys can wait.” ~ Author unknown

I remember my first “energy work” class over twenty years ago. The instructor cued the students to close their eyes and “run” their energy in figure eights up and down their energy bodies pulling energy up from the earth. While she had just described what she wanted us to do, I was in the “what the heck?” stage. I remember closing my eyes along with all the others, and then peaking out ever so slightly to “see” if I could sense what the others were doing. Little did I know at the time, the “running of my eights” exercise would become a staple in all of my visualization/mediation/centering exercises. I needed to experience it as a lesson, work with it, learn it, and practice being it before I could embody it without effort. Just like riding a bike! Once I believed in it, I could easily feel it.

“You’ll see it when you believe it.” ~ Dr. Wayne W. Dyer (Book by the same title is an excellent book!)

Likewise, if someone had told me ten years ago that I would quit my full-time corporate job 3 ½ years ago and teach yoga, facial exercise/acupressure/self-massage, and meditation classes full time, and write regularly for my own and other websites, I wouldn’t have believed them. Yet here I am; and I am able to walk this path, with all of its wonderful, synchronistic twists and turns, because I took the steps in between to “try this life on” and to believe in living on purpose.

“Follow your bliss and don’t be afraid and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.” ~ Joseph Campbell.

I won’t say it was a piece of cake. At first my self-esteem dropped tremendously. I was too attached  to equating who I was with my old job title—with what I “did”. That’s attaching to the physical, the material. I cried a lot in those first few months. It wasn’t until I fully believed in myself and my gifts that I started to detach from having a “career” and align myself more with having a “life purpose” and living “on purpose”.

You can have both, to be sure, but for me a “life purpose” is what we should all be striving for behind the “career”. THAT will make your life’s work pop with magic and energize you because then and only then does the Universe conspire for your full expression!

Don’t worry about what the world wants from you, worry about what makes you come more alive. Because what the world really needs are people who are more alive. Your real job is to increase the color and zest of your life. ~ Lawrence Leshan

As mentioned in the opening section, this first knot, located in the root chakra, is “Known as the knot of names and forms, the world of ambitions and desires..” The Chakra Bible by Patricia Mercier.

The root chakra is about being centered, grounded, safe and secure—which is what I was pining after once I quit my corporate job. Yet modern lifestyles, by their nature, can pull you off center—whether you just quit your job or not. The crazier your world becomes, the more you gravitate toward safety and security. You might even tend toward reaching for safety and security over venturing out and putting yourself out there in the world as I admitted to in the opening section.

Well if the first knot is about ambitions and desires and it’s located in the safety and security chakra, can you see the possible conflict to overcome? Remember, the first knot remains shut until you have overcome your attachment to stability, inertia and identification with the physical alone. When you can experience your life force moving forward in the direction of your ambitions and desires, yet remain detached from the physical trappings of what you equate those desires to, you’re on the right track!

Remember it’s a focus on the bigger picture vs. the details. Bigger picture is end result—love and joy and expressing that. Expressing that is your purpose. Details are: “How do I get there? What do I do to achieve that?” “What’s in it for me?” When you do things with love, people are attracted to it and come back for more. Surround all of your endeavors with love and joy—simple but not easy, as stated earlier.

“Love responds to your invitation, love responds to imagination.” ~ Rush, Chain Lightning

“Eventually you will come to understand that love heals everything, and love is all there is.” ~Gary Zukav


Image Credit:http://sphotos-e.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/486817_10151329068103768_629099290_n.jpg

You’ll never really have all the answers, but as you realize you need nothing “out there” to feel grateful, life becomes filled with constant joy. You begin to recognize your life as beautiful in every way and in every moment because you decided it is. Safety, security, and survival are a given in this frame of mind!

You no longer “need” anything in the physical realm other than what you already have. As a matter of fact, simpler is better.

“Observe for yourself how much of the time you measure how well you are doing in regard to your destination while ignoring how you really feel in the moment. Where are all the actual minutes, hours, and days of your life? Do they wait for you at some destination, or are they rapidly passing right now? Ask yourself, would you rather have a feeling of happiness in the moment-to-moment experience of your life, or in a few big bang-up episodes upon reaching various goals? You know the final destination of the physical body is decay and death, so why would you choose to measure your life by endings when all the experience, the felt sense of being alive, is in the journey?” ~ Buddhist teacher Phillip Moffitt

You’ll never have enough of something that doesn’t feed your soul. Having more “stuff” won’t fill you up because more stuff doesn’t really fill you, does it? All you need lies within—literally. True wealth has nothing to do with how much money you have. It is your gifts within that you are finally brave enough to share with others—because you finallybelieve in yourself enough to share them—that create true wealth. As you find the courage to share your gifts with others, you align with your own true nature; and as you align with your own true nature, in my humble opinion, that is the path toward releasing the first knot in your energy body.

Your work is to discover your work and then, with all your heart to give yourself to it.
~ Buddha

It starts in your mind. You decide. Decide you are enough. That’s a very empowering statement. I started to write it just now as “I am good enough, smart enough, etc.”, and then I shortened it to I am enough, and then to “I am.”

Be still and know that I am

Be still and know

Be still

~ Psalm 46:10

 

The Secret by Rhonda Byrnes, pointed out that “I am” are the two most powerful words in the English language. I think their power is in knowing you have all you need within. Affirm who you are constantly until it becomes who you are. Believe you deserve. Believe something wonderful is about to happen, because the Universe will always fill that void. Magic Happens!

Breathwork and Visualization: 

When Buddha rose from under the Bodhi tree, it is said a monk approached him in utter amazement at his luminosity and asked, “O Holy One, what are you? You must be a God.”

Buddha, not thinking of himself as anything but present, answered, “No…not a God,” and kept walking.

But the dazzled monk persisted. “Then you must be a Deva,” and Buddha stopped and said, “No…not a Deva,” and kept walking.

Still the monk pursued him, “Then you must be Brahma himself!”

At this point, Buddha simply uttered, “No.”

The monk, confused, implored, “Then what are you—Tell me, please—what are you?!”

Buddha could not repress his joy and replied, “I am awake.”

Can it be that our purpose, no matter whom we run into, no matter what we are told, is simply to be awake?

Sit quietly and meditate on the things that have come to define you.

Feel what you do with your days and say, “I am more than my job.”

Feel where you sleep your nights and say, “I am more than where I live.”

Feel who you love and say, “I am more than my relationships.”

Feel all you have suffered and say, “I am more than my history.”

Feel your very name and say, “I am more than my name.”

Feel your breath enter and leave your heart and say without history or name,
“I am the flame of life living in this body.”

Source:  The Book of Awakening. Having the Life You Want by Being Present in the Life You Have by Mark Nepo.

Affirmations

  • I am willing to see my magnificence*
  • I am on an endless journey through eternity*
  • Whatever is happening out there is only a mirror of my own limited thinking.*
  • I trust the intelligence within me.*
  • I am open to possibilities.***
  • I am a reflection of joy.***
  • I am committed to helping others.***
  • I am believing in myself and my gifts.***
  • I am capable of continued excellence. I keep going for what feels astounding, remarkable and life giving. Then all areas of my life will sparkle with new light.****
  • I am grounded and calm**
  • I am rooted to the earth**
  • I am welcome, wanted, and completely supported by the Universe.**
  • My life is part of the natural plan, and my presence on earth is welcome, wanted and essential to the Divine Plan.**
  • I am now totally centered in the love and joy of being alive.*
  • I flow with life.*
  • Peace of mind is mine.*
  • I am enough
  • I am
  • I am neither too little nor too much, and I do not have to prove myself to anyone.*
  • I am okay as I am.*
  • I am filled with the unlimited abundance of the universe and manifest all that I need.*****


Sources:

  • *Louise L. Hay Wisdom Cards, her book, You can heal your life, and her 2013 affirmation calendar.
  • **Sonia Choquette chakra affirmation cards
  • ***Intentional Serenity “Open to Possibilities” Card
  • ****Yoga Path Cards by Susan Woldman
  • *****Coventry Creations’ Prosperity Candle affirmation

Diet and Muladhara Chakra:

Protein (especially animal protein), root vegetables, edible and medicinal mushrooms, red-colored foods (apples, pomegranates, etc). And since February is known as American Heart Month and the “ultimate red month”, here’s a great link to an article about 5 Red Foods to Eat for Your Heart.

Do you crave salt like I do? Read on!

Salt relates closely to the root chakra. “The key emotional quality of this chakra is security, without which smooth social interaction and other vital activities fail. .. A similar proposition in Chinese physiology states that the kidneys rule the emotions fear and insecurity. Our desire for salt may reflect an internal wish for a more emotionally safe foundation, particularly in a modern society characterized by tremendous change and uncertainty. The anchor of security provided by salt is something to be highly valued. However, too much of an extreme substance such as salt causes it’s properties to reverse—kidney damage, fear, rigid legs and pelvis are all symptoms of a poor emotional and physical foundation resulting from excess salt.”

This wonderful, intriguing book goes on to say that “Salt has the unique ability to produce a quick mentally centering effect to counter the scattered consciousness caused by toxins, as well as to aid in general detoxification. According to the doctrine of signatures, an ancient principle still used in herbology and other forms of biologic medicine, a plant or substance will sometimes have a visual appearance which suggests its use. Salt has a crystalline structure which suggests definition and clarity. From our observation, salt promotes a lucid, grounded centered experience. The Inner Classic supports this view, telling us that salt in moderation strengthens the heart and mind.”

One last amazing thing: “Salt, on the other hand, alkalizes and thus is craved by those whose systems are overly acidic. This property of salt is one reason people heavily salt their meat, since meat strongly acidifies the human body. Similarly, adding a touch of salt to the cooking water of grains restores balance to these acid-forming foods.”  The author goes on to warn that “despite the positive aspects of salt—it’s clarifying, alkalizing, purifying, and centering qualities—there is still great potential for its misuse.”

“Salt…is a grounding crystal that takes us down into the body/mind where well-centered concentration of matter attracts a clear perception of its opposite: Spirit (non-matter).” ~ Jacques De Langre, in Seasalt & Your Life.

Source: Healing with Whole Foods. Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition by Paul Pitchford.

Aromatherapy and Muladhara Chakra:

Young Living Essential Oils™ for the Muladhara/Root Chakra :

Root Chakra (Gonads) / “I KNOW” /
Element: EARTH
Security, survival, trust, relationships with money, home, and job.   Essential oils to open and balance this chakra are Sandalwood,  Patchouly, Grounding, Cedarwood, Ylang Ylang.  Rub one drop on
base of spine and then rub hands together and inhale 3x.

~ Bottoms of Feet ~
Always ground yourself before any type of meditation or spiritual
reflection/meditation. Essential oils that assist with this are
Grounding and Valor. Take one drop per foot; rub on bottom of foot
and on big toes.  Inhale!

Also try: Vetiver, Ginger, Thyme, Basil, and Clary Sage.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

 

Gem therapy and the Muladhara Chakra:

Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Muladhara Chakra gems are:  Hematite—offers stress resistance; works as a protective shield (much like the knots!). Smoky Quartz—brings present focus, dissolves emotional blocks. Black Tourmaline—protects, calms and expels fear, best set in silver. Garnet—counters illusions; acts against depression, beats insecurity.

For some of these and other great root chakra stones, (Boji stones, Black Moonstone, Black Obsidian, Shiva Eye Agate, Shungite, Moqui (aka Shaman Stones), Onyx with Pyrite, and Snowflake Obsidian) check out http://www.crystallinelightshop.com/collections/crystals-root-chakra or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com. I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products (and her)!

 

Yoga poses for the Muladhara Chakra:

All yoga poses essentially activate the chakras. The Charkascope section focuses on the mula bandha, or root lift/lock, which activates the root chakra. Also, using a block between the thighs a couple of inches above the knees in various poses such as chair, or even throughout a sun salutation (hopping into plank and mountain vs. stepping is required) helps to activate the root chakra.

Some yoga poses to stimulate the Muladhara chakra and “draw up earth energy” include (Please note all the links, except for the root visualization, go to my old website for information on the linked page only. All other pages are not current!):
Downward facing dog
,

Chair pose (especially with the block mentioned in the previous paragraph), Cobbler’s pose (or as I like to refer to it: Butterfly pose),

Mountain pose (add a mountain scene meditation—I like to remind my students that in life we often climb the infamous “mountain”—work, work, work, sweat, sweat, sweat—and you finally reach the top. Most of us don’t take the time to enjoy the view up here. We only see the next mountain looming, challenging, calling your name. Take time to enjoy this moment, this mountain you just climbed, and remember you are on top of the world. (Derived from my wonderful “I Hope You Dance” journal by Mark D. Sanders & Tia Sillers.). Also, the act of pushing the “imaginary floor boards away with your feet” or “try to tear your yoga mat apart with your feet” activates the root chakra. Similarly adding foot lock in this pose stimulates the root chakra: (Lift the toes, spread them wide, plop them down. Feel the outer edges of your feet cup the mat.)

Tree pose  (add a root visualization with roots coming out the soles of your feet to increase the root chakra energy ), and

Child’s pose  (add a relaxing forehead roll from left to right: Rolling over the third-eye activates the pineal gland, releasing melatonin, and promotes a relaxed nervous system. Rolling over the forehead points activates the reflexology points for worrying.)

09
October

Third/Solar Plexus Chakra: (Sanskrit term: Manipura)

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Third/Solar Plexus Chakra: (Sanskrit term: Manipura) Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.


Image Credit:  http://gloriagypsy.deviantart.com/gallery/25522112#/d2rhgiq

Manipura means “Lustrous gem” in Sanskrit. That’s YOU and it extends the sentiments expressed in the opening section. Inside of you is a gem—be open to life and let it out. This chakra is about transformation—meaningful change—which ties into the opening yoga quote from
Special K ™.

This chakra is the home of your willpower and is connected to your right to act. It is related to the fire element. Do you believe you have the right to act? If you don’t then your inner fire needs stoking! Take the time right now to do something—anything—physical.

Just getting your lungs filled with fresh air will do wonders to creating space in your third chakra/solar plexus area. When you take deep breaths, filling the belly, then the middle ribs, then the upper chest, you are spreading the intercostals muscles between the ribs. This creates more space in the whole rib cage and increases your ability to take in more quality, fresh, rich, oxygen-filled prana. Prana is your life force energy. This chakra holds your life force. Using breathwork to harness the power of your breath gives you tremendous power at your solar plexus.

Whenever you are standing or sitting, remember to use good posture to give your solar plexus area more space for your inner fire to grow. Sitting up, standing tall, aligning your joints—shoulders over hips, ears over shoulders—are all ways to keep not only your spine healthy, but your solar plexus chakra healthy too. Don’t fall prey to “Text Neck”:

‘Text Neck’ is a world-wide health concern, affecting millions of all ages and from all walks of life. Widespread overuse of handheld mobile technology is resulting in a harmful and dangerous physical condition on the human body, which is known as Text Neck. Dr. Dean Fishman is a Chiropractor in Plantation Florida, and a leading health care provider for technology induced injuries. Dr. Fishman originated the phrase ‘Text Neck’  to explain the repeated stress injury to the body caused by excessive texting and overuse of all handheld electronic devices. The term, and the health condition, is derived from the onset of cervical spinal degeneration resulting from the repeated stress of frequent forward head flexion while looking down at the screens of mobile devices and ‘texting’ for long periods of time. While ‘Text Neck’ is certainly a new medical term, the condition is impacting millions and is a growing critical global concern.” http://text-neck.com/

The solar plexus area is where your “gut instinct” resides. Your gut will tell you what actions feel good, and what actions do not feel good. Do you listen to your gut? If you don’t believe you have the right to act, you are probably shutting off your gut instinct. When you don’t act upon the messages your inner awareness is communicating to you, you are basically stopping the messages from being sent. It is when you listen and do something with the messages that creates more where that came from.

If you aren’t listening and receiving your inner messages, and then acting upon what your inner knowing is telling you—you won’t know your purpose. You won’t know who you are because who you are lies within those messages. Turn them off and you’ve essentially turned yourself off. It then becomes a domino effect—when you turn yourself off you lose your self esteem. Don’t let your inner fire go out! Keep the fire burning.

Become aware of the voice inside telling you it’s time to act. Believe in your right to act, listen to your inner wisdom’s directions, and then follow your path. Your inner strength—your willpower/third chakra—provides support and guidance. You stoke your inner strength throughout your life. This power is like a muscle. Use it or lose it! It is the steadfastness of your willpower (your third chakra energy), the clarity of your intention, and the quality of your attitude that determines the nature of your passage.

Your willpower creates your transformations. You are the cause of your own reflection in the mirror. Do you feel empowered by that thought? You should be! Take some risks to develop your power. Even one small, intrepid step outside of your comfort zone will exhilarate you to do more. Keep on listening to your gut. You’ll know the next step to take, and the next, and the next.


Image Credit: http://catchingfireflies.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/2007/04/25/cur04.jpg

Other ways to stimulate the fire element would be to surround yourself with the colors of fire:  yellows, reds, and orange. What a perfect season to do that with! Just peak outside your window for the bounty of autumn’s colors and let them sink in. You can also enjoy surrounding yourself with lighted candles, lanterns, tea lights, fireplaces, or wood stoves. Increase the light in your life to stimulate more light. Open the blinds!

Since the third chakra houses your digestive system. Being aware of what you are consuming is a must. Mindful eating is, in itself, a meditation. (Scroll down to the Meditation on the go section) Using spices, such as ginger, to aid digestion is an excellent addition to a healthy diet. Here are some other ayurvedic suggestions for enhancing digestive power from an excellent article I found on Yogi Times by Aparna Khanolkar:

“Follow these simple suggestions and you should enjoy good digestion.

1. Avoid drinking cold beverages with your meal. Stick to sipping small amounts of hot water with meals. This breaks down the oils and fats and keeps your agni well-lit.

2. Eat slowly. Digestion begins in your mouth. Chewing your food is important in breaking down the food that will be digested in the stomach later.

3. Sit down and eat. That does not mean in the car while driving. Sit peacefully and enjoy the meal in silence or with pleasant conversations. After you finish your meal, don’t rush to wash dishes. Sit and enjoy the feeling of a full belly.

4. If you have sluggish digestion, eat a thin sliver of fresh ginger with a pinch of salt. Do this just before a meal. This will get your digestive acids going.

5. Eat animal protein only during the day when your fire is stronger. For dinner have soup, steamed vegetables and herbal tea.

6. A small amount of ghee is good for your agni as well. Add a teaspoon of ghee on your rice or quinoa and enjoy its sweet taste and rich flavor.

7. Eat fruit alone. Avoid the standard breakfast of eggs, potatoes and a fruit cup. Take it home and eat it 2-3 hours later. Fruit digests very quickly and if you eat it with regular foods, it will fester in the stomach and cause digestive problems.

8. Stop snacking. Each meal takes at least three hours to digest. Eating in between meals will disrupt the digestive process of the previous meal.

9. Do not mix dairy with savory foods. Milk, cheese and other dairy products also digest differently than say vegetables and pasta.

10. Eat only when you are hungry. Do not eat when you are not hungry. This means find other ways to satiate yourself when life offers challenges. Food is for self-nurturance not a way to distract ourselves from what life offers us in the way of lessons.

The body has a magnificent mechanism for processing what we eat into energy. We can support this system with self-discipline and respect for this in-built bodily function. Eating is a great pleasure. Cooking is an act of self-nurturance. Remember the Ayurvedic wisdom: Without proper digestion, nectar can turn into poison. With proper digestion, poison can turn into nectar.”
Excerpt from Agni–enhancing digestive power article by Aparna Khanolkar.

If, on the other hand, you have too much fire in your system, you need to soothe your third chakra energy. Meditation, deep relaxing breaths extending the exhale, and learning to be still are all in order.

Only you know if you need to turn the heat up or down in your life. Listening to your inner wisdom is where it all starts. When you are in-tune with your third chakra, you use the power of your will to attain the results you want. Claim your power! Claim your right to act!

“The Cleansing Affirmation

I release with strength and will,

Anything that isn’t forwarding me…

Toward my highest place of joy.

I welcome warmly into my heart,

And passionately embrace

All the goodness,

That is meant for me in this life.

I am a valued member of this universe.

It is my right to thrive, prosper and rejoice,

It is my right to enjoy the result of my work,

It is my right to stand for success.

I am exactly who I want to be,

Starting right now.”

Source: The Healing Handbook, A Beginner’s Guide to Meditation ~ Jodi Levy

 “Your solar-plexus energy centre is the source of your imagination, your vision of the future and your desire for action.” ~ Swami Saradananda

 

Breathwork:

Uddiyana Bandha
is an important practice for the Manipura chakra. The belly lock held throughout class is different than the practice of Uddhyana Bandha described here: Stand with your feet a little more than hip-width apart. Bend your knees slightly and rest your hands on your thighs. Inhale deeply through your nose and exhale forcefully through your mouth. When your lungs are completely empty, draw your diaphragm up toward your throat while holding your breath. Hold for as long as you feel comfortable and take a deep breath.

Contraindications for breath hold: hypertension, glaucoma, sinus/head infection, pregnancy, asthma, cardiac/circulatory, and anxiety disorders.


Affirmations
:

  • I use the power of my will to receive the results I want
  • I can succeed. All that is available to anyone is available to me. I am successful. I do succeed. Because I am full of the power of success.
  • I am the cause of this reflection. I am in control of what I see. The world is a reflection of what is inside of me. I create my reality.
  • I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious, and happy!
  • I deeply love and approve of who I am.
  • I am worthy of my own-self-love.
  • I love and respect myself at all times.
  • I trust in love.
  • I trust my worthiness.
  • I am worth my weight in gold.
  • There are no failures. I learn from everything I do.
  • I believe that everything is for my highest good and greatest joy.
  • I love life.
  • I listen to and trust my deepest insights.
  • I am worthy of the very best in life.

 

Sources:

Diet and Manipura Chakra: 

In addition to using ginger for digestion, as recommended earlier, turmeric, cumin, fennel, black pepper, cayenne, cloves and peppermint are also excellent to add to your arsenal. Whole grains such as quinoa and millet are excellent, gluten-free choices with a low glycemic index.

  • Whole Grains. Whole grains are minimally processed grains that are closer to their natural form than processed grains, and therefore have a low glycemic index (GI), a ranking of carbohydrate foods on the basis of how rapidly they affect blood sugar (glucose). This is important because eating a lot of foods that are high on the GI will produce spikes in blood sugar that can lead, over time, to insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is associated with obesity, high blood pressure, elevated blood fats, an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, and other chronic diseases. Barley, quinoa, millet, wheat berries and kasha are good choices, as they provide important nutrients, including protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and, especially, carbohydrates that are low on the GI.
  • Spices. Turmeric and ginger are two winners for brain health as you age: Research suggests that turmeric, the major ingredient in American mustard and Indian curry, can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. This may help explain the unusually low incidence of Alzheimer’s in India, where people consume significant amounts of turmeric every day. Use this culinary spice to give a healthy sharp flavor to your favorite eastern cuisine. Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory agent that has also been linked to a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s. You can add ginger to your diet by eating crystallized ginger or the pickled ginger that comes with sushi, and use ginger when cooking.” http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/TIP04591/7-Foods-for-Aging-Gracefully.html

 

Aromatherapy and Manipura Chakra:

Young Living Essential Oils™ for the Manipura Chakra : Solar Plexus Chakra (Spleen) / “I CAN” /
Element: FIRE

As this chakra has to do with your gut instinct, power and control,
oils that will help to balance and open this chakra are Juniper,
Surrender, Release, Sacred Mountain, and Dream Catcher.  Rub one drop
in clockwise direction on stomach (upper abdomen), rub hands together
and inhale 3x.

Also try: chamomile, bergamot, fennel, and peppermint.

http://www.younglivingsuccess.com/2010/05/-chakras-and-therapeutic-essential-oils.html

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Manipura Chakra: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Manipura Chakra gems are:  Aventurine Quartz, Yellow Citrine, Amber, Gold Topaz, Fire Opal. Green Jade, among others.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com. I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products (and her)!

Yoga poses for the Manipura Chakra: All yoga poses essentially activate the chakras. Some yoga poses to stimulate the Manipura chakra include: rotated triangle, spinal twists, plant pose, locust pose (highlighted above), and belly rolls, Uddhyana Bandha, among others.

21
July

Sacral (Sanskrit term: Swadhishthana)

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Sacral (Sanskrit term: Swadhishthana) Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Image Credit:http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/4b/Swadhisthana.png

The sacral chakra is located in the lower abdominal area between the navel and the pubic bone. It is associated with the energy of the moon and the emotions of the body. (“Crescent Moon” pose was the highlighted feature this month!)

My opening section dwelled on going with the flow and detaching from the outcome.  Learning to go with the flow and detach from the outcome is the hallmark of the sacral chakra. It is this very detachment that allows the Universe to do its thing—to create something greater for your life than you could ever imagine. The sacral chakra is also your creativity center. This chakra’s message is to quit holding on—detach and go with the flow so you can create the life of your dreams.

The point of detachment is just that—don’t direct how your dream will manifest because the Universe has plans bigger than your imagination. So why would you want to limit that? Detach! Aren’t you even a tad bit curious what the Universe will conjure up if it knew no bounds?

As you learn that you are simply along for the ride—one that works better without your struggling—you get out of your own way. As the opening section pointed out, when the Universe is given free reign, it will deliver. I am still in amazement at the explicit way it pointed me to my new studio location.

The Sacral chakra is associated with the element of water. I’m reminded of a reference to the childhood song “Row, row, row your boat” and a humorous analogy to ending the struggle that is pointed out in the song, as presented by Wayne Dyer. He pointed out that the song reminds you to row, row, row your boat—not someone else’s boat, but your boat. Focusing on your life and your plans will aide in flowing gently down the stream. The emphasis is on “gently” floating without struggle, and floating down the stream vs. against the current. Let the water take you where it may and your life will proceed “merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily” into your dream life—“Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily…life is but a dream!”—THAT is the sacral chakra at work, and you were given explicit instructions on activating this energy as a child.

It is when you were a child that you were detached from outcomes the most. As a child you are in the present moment by nature. As an adult, it seems you need to relearn how to be in the present moment. Your creativity was also the most unencumbered as a child. Ask a group of kindergartners how many of them can draw and they will not understand how ANY of them can not! So become like a child again, and row, row, row your boat gently down the stream…merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily—your life will be a dream!

New International Version (© 1984)
And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”

Be like a child and create your own kingdom of heaven here on earth—your joy, your happiness, here on earth.

There are several sacral chakra ways to be like a child:

  • Let yourself laugh out loud with excitement whenever you can. The owner at my new studio, Awana Brewington, has an infectious giggle—she makes me smile from ear to ear whenever I hear her laugh, and that is often! It makes me happy just to be around her! Make others want to be around you too! That’s sacral chakra energy at work…that’s being your own larger than life, beautiful sensual, creative self!
  • Be curious about everything! Curiosity helps you learn and grow. Not having an interest in things makes you stagnant.
  • Have unbridled faith that everything is as it should be—read that to mean—quite worrying!

One of my favorite affirmations (because I needed it so much!) is:

              The idea that something is wrong is easily lifted from me.

How many of you always feel like something is wrong? How’s that working for you? Not so much for me either!

  • Trust first. Trust that you’ve done all you can when you’ve done your best. Trust that effort yields results every time. Trust that everything happens for a reason—even the lessons. Trust yourself, your instincts, your goals. Don’t let skepticism steal the juice from your life. Have faith, mentioned earlier, and trust in the bigger picture.
  • Believe you are a creative being.  Know that your creation is no less awe-inspiring or deserving than any other—even the well-known artist. Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder—and your eyes should be on your  side.

You are in serious need of stimulating this chakra when you take yourself too seriously, and can’t let that infectious laugh out to play!  When you don’t have an interest in what is going on around you, or have a decrease in your creativity—this chakra is under-activated!  When you can’t detach or let go of the past, call on the sacral chakra for a regroup! You need some orange!

The sacral chakra vibrates to the color orange. Want to add some childlike exuberance to your life? Add orange!

I’ve read that in times of stress or after a shock or surprise, wearing orange can help your body to return to a state of balance. (Source: Healing with crystals and chakra energies, by Sue and Simon Lilly.)

My husband and I have an orange wall in our living room—long story. It was supposed to be a “rag on” paint that was to result in looking rustic like a red/orange cave—Southwestern style. The vibrant orange wall that resulted was not exactly what I was looking for, but we stayed with it for these past few years; and I’ve come to appreciate the therapeutic value of orange. Coupled with prayerful Native American prints from Father John Giuliani of Christ in Ascension as well as John the Baptist, I find the orange backdrop to be very soothing to end my day with.

Orange will enable you to get out of the head—your “way too analytical” side—and flow with life. It seems counter-intuitive that to find balance, you let go, doesn’t it? But that’s exactly what happens because when you let go and go with the flow—wherever this water element chakra chooses to take you—you quit the struggle and you quit the effort. Let go of trying to control and be like water, pooling where you find easy comfortable space. Try adding the orange energy of the sacral chakra to your environment and see if you find your inner child, your creativity, your exuberance, your balanced life.

Breathwork and Visualization: 

This breathwork can be done seated with straight spine, or lying down if that’s more comfortable. Begin breathing deep breaths way down into your belly. Feel yourself relaxing with each breath, releasing stress as your shoulders drop down with each exhale, relaxing your body into the surface it is resting upon. Do this for several breaths until you feel completely relaxed.

Begin to focus on your sacral chakra located in the lower abdominal area between the navel and the pubic bone. Bring your breath to this area, visualizing the color orange building in the sacral chakra into an orange energy ball.

Bring to mind a memory of when you were a child or when you witnessed a child filled with wonder and excitement. Connect to that magic. Feel the magic and sense of childlike wonder, faith, and enthusiasm that is found in the sacral chakra area. Let that feeling build into a big ball of exuberant, orange energy. Go on, it’s easy! No one is watching you! Just let go and know that you still have the spontaneous child within you!  You will always be that young child. Don’t let an old person into your body!

Stay with this feeling for as long as you desire, adding a smile to your face.

Affirmations

  • I will always be that young girl / guy
  • It is safe to have life easy and pleasurable.
  • I allow pleasure, sweetness, and sensuality into my life.
  • I allow abundance and prosperity into my life.
  • I am enough. What I do is enough. What I have is enough. Who I am and
  • I trust the Universe to give me everything I need for my growth
    and development.
  • I am enough. What I do is enough. What I have is enough. Who I am and what I do is enough.
  • I open myself to the beauty, joy, and harmony of the Universe and I enjoy it.
  • I trust the process of life.
  • I love myself exactly as I am right now.
  • I rest in the knowing that I am guided in all that I do and all that I experience.
  • I greet this day in joy, knowing that I am being guided to experience only the highest and best.
  • I live my life joyfully today, knowing that all is indeed well. Life is good.

Sources:
http://www.1lovespirit.com/affirmations-chakras.html

Science of Mind May 2012 personal affirmations

Diet and Sacral Chakra: 

Just as an under-active sacral chakra affects your exuberance and creativity in life, it also affects your joints making them stiff. Orange foods create flow in your body—releasing toxins and stress and adding lubrication to your stiff joints. Orange fruits:  Oranges, peaches, apricots. Orange vegetables: Pumpkins, peppers, carrots. Other orange foods: Seafood such as shellfish, salmon. We can be attracted to orange foods when we need to release significant stress or toxicity. Make sure you drink enough liquids!

Source:  Healing with crystals and chakra energies by Sue and Simon Lilly

Aromatherapy and Sacral Chakra:

Young Living Essential Oils™ for the Sacral Chakra: Forgiveness, Inner Child, SARA (if working through any type of abuse), Frankincense, 3 Wise Men ­ Any of these oils will help balance and  support this chakra, which deals with issues of our inner child and
relationship issues.

Also try: Sandalwood, bitter orange, myrrh, and vanilla.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Sacral Chakra: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Sacral Chakra gems are:  Carnelian, Orange coral, Amber, Gold Topaz, and Fire Opal.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com. I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products (and her)!

Yoga poses for the Sacral Chakra: All yoga poses essentially activate the chakras. Some yoga poses to stimulate the sacral chakra include: Crescent lunge (Highlighted pose above), Butterfly pose, Pelvic tilts, and Goddess Squat, among others.

21
May

Chakra: Solar Plexus (Sanskrit term: Manipura)

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers, Newsletter
Comments Off on Chakra: Solar Plexus (Sanskrit term: Manipura) Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Image Credit:  http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/aa/Manipura.png

 

The theme of this newsletter has been on being your own hero—being your own power. Since the third chakra is known as your power base, it’s the focus here. (The “Healthy News” section below also highlights the importance of a strong third chakra for overcoming eating disorders.)

Your solar plexus energy center is where you house the power of your will. One of my favorite affirmations for the third chakra is:  “I use the power of my will to obtain the results I want”. Your solar plexus chakra contains your sense of self and who you define yourself to be.

The opening section introduced you to the idea that your imagination is your sacred creative space. Since the solar plexus chakra holds the energy of who you imagine yourself to be, it is also the source of your imagination. Since the solar plexus chakra is where you will your life into being, it holds your future and it holds your desires for what you want your future to look like.

The opening section also reminded you of the power of the words “I am” and the descriptors that follow when you describe yourself. The solar plexus chakra “is forged with the energies: ‘This is who I am. This is who I want to be. This is how I want to be seen.’ Energy Medicine by Donna Eden.

Donna Eden’s book points out the organs housed within the solar plexus chakra and the emotions attributed to each:  Emotions such as fear and caution go to the kidneys which detect toxins in your bloodstream, self-protective anger goes to the liver which breaks down whatever is harmful to your system, panic responses mobilizing you in a crisis are the adrenals domain, and assimilation of what you can embrace belong to the pancreas. The diaphragm is the final organ described as being the prototype for grief and finding closure with whatever is passing out of your life—since it sends stale air out from the body.  The following chart is also a great pictorial on emotions and how they manifest in the body. It came to me via a friend on Facebook:

Image Credit:  http://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/546763_382909931729513_201564283197413_1251854_1990063845_n.jpg

 

Donna Eden adds that while all of these emotions shape our identity, we can’t forget about our family and culture. Outside influences—our parents, our friends, our acquaintances and social expectations—impact our identity as well. Here is where we can put into use Wayne Dyer’s suggestion to put a “Do Not Distrub” sign in our imagination (housed in our solar plexus chakra) and guard it as sacred ground. Re-read the bolded emotions in the above paragraph and determine that you need to put a “Do Not Disturb” sign over your solar plexus chakra.

The solar plexus lies at our gut—our center. So any offending emotions and influences hit us “where we live,” so to speak. The healthy news section below reminds us of the importance of a strong solar plexus chakra in overcoming eating disorders—social expectations hit us where we live. Again—”Do Not Disturb” becomes the appropriate mantra. “I AM” followed by strong, independent, healthy adjectives and descriptors becomes your antidote to societal and family expectations. Rhonda Byrne’s “The Secret” reminds of the “all purpose” mantra using the powerful words “I AM” as the opener:  “I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving harmonious, and happy!” Use it!

Another new perspective on the third chakra introduced to me in Donna Eden’s Energy Medicine book is that of a “belt flow” which separates the second and third chakras:  “The energy of the second chakra can be cut off from that of the third chakra, as well as the others above it. There is an energy between the second and third chakras called the belt flow… The belt flow, which goes around the waist, can become like a huge wall above the second chakra that cuts off the second chakra’s spontaneity, trust, and faith. When this happens, as it frequently does in Western cultures, the person may be tormented by merciless self-hatred, a desecration that often originates in the third chakra’s attempt to shape an identity that differs vastly from the natural child of the second chakra. Once the connection between the second and third chakra is opened, energy rises, knowledge about a truer, gentler self can filter up, and self-condemnation and self-hatred begin to dissolve in that knowledge.”

The “belt flow” reminds me of the granthis—in particular the brahma granthi. I’ve read that some texts locate this granthi or “lock” at the navel—or the solar plexus chakra. There are three granthis or “knots”. They are locks within the body that bind energy. The brahma granthi is the first knot we must unlock if we are to free the energies stored there and achieve all that we are meant to be. “Known as the knot of names and forms, the world of ambitions and desires..” The Chakra Bible by Patricia Mercier. This lock sounds like the third chakra gone awry, or perhaps the belt flow, doesn’t it?

The Chakra Bible referenced above, suggests withdrawing from the world of senses and practicing visualization and meditation, along with right living (practicing the Yamas and Niyamas https://betterdayyoga.com/tag/july-2011 ) as a way to begin to undo this knot. Again this speaks to the importance of our imagination as mentioned earlier. Visualizing while meditating strikes me as a great way to describe active use of our imagination to will our desired destiny into being, don’t you think?

The solar plexus chakra is associated with the element of fire. Fire represents the power of transformation. Free the energies stopping you from being all that you can be by realizing your inner radiance, your inner hero, your inner fire. Claiming your inner fire, your power, can be scary. There are no guarantees in life—risk is part of taking your power. All the lights won’t be green on your journey. Develop your inner power by taking appropriate risks in honor of your inner hero.

Image Credit: 

http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/381020_10150414605262781_147904157780_8508656_1956783013_n.jpg

Fire energy can burn out of control, however, and I think Donna Eden’s caution to not forget the “creative innocence and natural child” of our second chakra is an important one. An imbalanced solar plexus chakra expresses a competitive, egotistical, stubborn, controlling nature. Keep your ego under wraps with appreciation of the hero within vs. the villain within. Let the “kinder, gentler self filter up”. Since the solar plexus chakra is associated with the fire element, you can add the water element to soften any out of control fires. Breathwork practices (like the ones I highlight below and in all of my newsletters) are a great place to start. Taking some time off to be still, whether it’s an extended vacation, or a few minutes each hour, will go a long way toward soothing too much fire energy. Of course, a meditation practice is always a great idea. Check out some of my “Meditation On the Go” sections for some ideas on how to add meditative practices to your life, or perhaps consider signing up for one of my meditation workshops.

This is one of my favorite affirmations for the third chakra taken from The Prosperity Bible: The Greatest Writings of All Time On The Secrets to Wealth And Prosperity:  “I can succeed. All that is available to anyone is available to me. I am successful. I do succeed because I am full of the power of success.”  Bring all that you desire to be into fruition using the solar plexus energies of fire, will, and imagination.

Breathwork and Visualization from Donna Eden’s Energy Medicine book: 

“Holding and Cradling a Chakra:

Feeling thankful is good for your health. Having gratitude lifts your energy, and you can single out any or all chakras for channeling in your gratitude and thanksgiving. For instance, hold your hands over your third chakra, bring your elbows to the sides of your body, and hug and cradle the third chakra like a baby. Bring your mind’s eye into the chakra and breathe deeply. Send thanksgiving and gratitude. Your body responds when you treat it like the holy vessel that it is. Be open to whatever you experience. The solar plexus chakra is so overactive in our culture that it is a good chakra to use in learning this technique. Especially when you are feeling tormented by an inner voice scolding you about what you should do, or did wrong, cradle your solar plexus, rocking it like a baby as if rocking it to sleep. I make a “Shhh” sound as if to calm the baby. The forces that cause you to judge yourself, or another, helped you survive, and you can sincerely feel gratitude toward your third chakra. This makes the chakra less reactive, helping it evolve and support you in feeling more centered and confident. You can cradle and express gratitude toward any chakra in this way and it will respond.”

Source:  Energy Medicine: Balancing Your Body’s Energies for Optimal Health, Joy, and Vitality by Donna Eden with David Feinstien, Ph.D.

Another quick breathwork: “Breathing in” sunlight is an excellent way to activate the Solar Plexus Chakra. (The Chakra Bible by Patricia Mercier.)

Affirmations

  • I can succeed. All that is available to anyone is available to me. I am successful. I do succeed because I am full of the power of success.
  • I use the power of my will to obtain the results I want.
  • I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious, and happy!
  • I know humor can take on anything.
  • I deeply love and approve of who I am.
  • I am worthy of my own-self-love.
  • I love and respect myself at all times.
  • I trust in love.
  • I trust my worthiness.
  • I am worth my weight in gold.
  • There are no failures. I learn from everything I do.
  • I believe that everything is for my highest good and greatest joy.
  • I love life.
  • I listen to and trust my deepest insights.
  • I am worthy of the very best in life.
  • I release judgment and let my life flow.
  • I am my own hero!

(Also see the Favorite Yoga Music section below for the link to the PDF of affirmations from Steve Halpern’s Self Esteem CD.)

 Sources:

http://www.usatoday.com/life/comics/story/2012-04-09/brad-meltzer-heroes-charity-shirts/54118546/1

The Prosperity Bible: The Greatest Writings of All Time On The Secrets to Wealth And Prosperity

The Secret by Rhonda Byrne

http://www.1lovespirit.com/affirmations-chakras.html

Diet and Solar Plexus Chakra: 

  • Granola and Grains: pastas, breads, cereal, rices, flax seed, sunflower seeds, etc.
  • Dairy: milk, cheeses, yogurt
  • Spices: ginger, mints (peppermint, spearmint, etc.), melissa, chamomile, turmeric, cumin, fennel

Source:  http://healing.about.com/od/spiritualdiets/a/chakrafoods.htm

Aromatherapy and Solar Plexus Chakra:

Juniper, Clary Sage, Geranium

Young Living Essential Oils™ for the Solar Plexus Chakra :

Solar Plexus Chakra (Spleen) / “I CAN” /
Element: FIRE
As this chakra has to do with your gut instinct, power and control,
oils that will help to balance and open this chakra are Juniper,
Surrender, Release, Sacred Mountain, and Dream Catcher.  Rub one drop
in clockwise direction on stomach (upper abdomen), rub hands together
and inhale 3x.

http://www.younglivingsuccess.com/2010/05/-chakras-and-therapeutic-essential-oils.html

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Solar Plexus Chakra: 

Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Solar Plexus Chakra gems are:  topaz, yellow tourmaline, citrine

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products (and her)!

Yoga poses for the Solar Plexus Chakra:

All yoga poses essentially activate the chakras. Some yoga poses to stimulate the solar plexus chakra include: hero’s pose—as highlighted above, plank pose, stomach crunches, belly rolls, revolved abdominal curl, cow pose, spinal twists, and camel pose, among others.

25
February

Chakra: Brow / Third Eye Chakra (Sanskrit term: Ajna Chakra)

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Chakra: Brow / Third Eye Chakra (Sanskrit term: Ajna Chakra) Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Image Credit: http://gloriagypsy.deviantart.com/art/Third-Eye-Chakra-167096317

Working with the brow chakra opens the mind to the divine and the spiritual—sounds like a magic portal to me, doesn’t it to you? Since magic portals have been the theme for this newsletter, the third eye chakra is where it’s at!

As a matter of fact, the suggestion to be out in nature to connect to the magical realm is also recommended to open the brow chakra—another indicator it’s the chakra to lead the way to your own inner magic portal. And if you are short on time for a full fledged trip outdoors, remember you can always try a yoga nidra or other meditation CD that has nature sounds mixed in to find your peace and solitude for working with this chakra. (See the Featured CD, “Meditation On The Go”, and Healthy News sections for more on yoga nidra!)

Final relaxation / Savasana and yoga nidra were both indicated as being good times to introduce positive affirmations and guided visualizations to introduce healthy changes and attitudes into your life. As you work on balancing the brow chakra, your ability to change the way you view your life and your purpose are strengthened as well. So there’s a great place to start work on your third eye chakra! Create an affirmation! 

Remember, affirmations are positive statements written in the present tense. They help you to focus on various goals and intentions of your choosing. You can repeat them aloud or silently within, write them down, or record them and listen to them. Try several ways! “When a mantra is spoken out loud, it primarily benefits the physical body.  When it’s whispered, it benefits our mental/emotional nature.  Our spiritual nature benefits from silent repetition.” ~ Julie Lusk at http://wholesomeresources.com/1849/how-to-do-the-sa-ta-na-ma-meditation-to-improve-memory/

 “Make Your Own Mantra
Positive thinking exercises, like affirmative self-talk, suppresses the release of cortisol from the adrenal glands. And that can help you feel calm and peaceful. So when negative thoughts crop up, imagine a big stop sign in your head, and tell yourself, “Stop!” Then, replace the downer thought with a positive, soothing message. Think of what it is you wish were true, and then state it over and over, as if it were true. Here are some examples of positive thinking that can help you feel empowered and ready to face the day:

  • When you exercise and feel tired, think, ‘I am strong.’
  • When you pass by a mirror, think, ‘I am the perfect weight for me.’
  • When you set to work on a hard task, think, ‘I can accomplish anything.’

When you feel overwhelmed, think, ‘I trust in the process of life.’”
http://www.realage.com/health-tips/reduce-stress-through-the-power-of-positive-thinking?cbr=singall3_hg&eid=1010660660&memberid=5734411

Speaking of magical portals—if I could share with you a magical time to create and write your affirmations to give them more energy, would you be “in”? I knew you would be! Write them during the new moon each month. (http://www.timeanddate.com/calendar/moonphases.html) Now don’t roll your eyes here! Your agriculturally minded ancestors have planted during the new moon for “many moons”—pun intended! They have come to know this as a time for new beginnings, so get on board! This book gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “moontime”!

I learned of this magic moment each month from a great book filled with affirmations, among other things, by Jan SpillerNEW MOON ASTROLOGY: Using New Moon Power Days To Change and Revitalize Your Life: 

“The Moon’s influence on human destiny has been recognized since ancient times, but its potential for generating positive outcomes has often been ignored – until now. In this breakthrough book, astrologer Jan Spiller reveals the secrets of harnessing the Moon’s astonishing power to make your goals a reality!

Not just another astrology book, New Moon Astrology provides practical, step-by-step instructions, based on ancient rites and philosophy as well as Jan Spiller’s own vast astrological experience, in framing your wishes in any area- love, career, family, or health.

On New Moon Power Days, your desires become incantations with amazing focus and strength. Using the special Moon chart included here, you’ll be able to express your wishes during a “magic” moment – a personal power period in the astrological cycle – setting forces in motion that transform your desires into reality. To have your Granddaddy Power Period calculated for you, free of charge, click here.”  https://www.janspiller.com/books.php (You can also go to the site to purchase the book.)

This chakra is considered the chakra of intuition—your third eye. Do you feel intuitive? If not, why not? Similar to being open to the magic so that it feels welcome, you need to feel open to your intuition for it to develop within. We are all intuitive! But like the proverbial child’s gift—some assembly is required! Namely—accepting your intuition. Know that you know what you know. This chakra is about distilling the wisdom you’ve acquired and accepting it.

My opening section on magical portals referenced the influence of fairy tales to promote magical moments—and intelligence (remember the quote from Einstein!). The third chakra is stimulated by letting your imagination soar. So “Read fairy tales and mythology, try to visualize crazy things, or, better yet, write a short story of your own. Everything that promotes your fantasy life also awakens your forehead chakra.” A Handbook of Chakra Healing, Spiritual Practice for Health, Harmony and Inner Peace by Kalashatra Govinda.

Again, time alone spent in yoga nidra, meditation, and—of course, yoga—will foster a healthy environment for your intuition to flourish. I can only tell you from experience that when I have been following a regimen of consistent meditative time, my intuition doesn’t hesitate to make its presence known! We are all intuitive, regardless—but why not help things along by destressing, relaxing, and adding meditative moments?

I have to share an example here. A few months ago as I was working on one of my newsletters, I was looking for one of my stray reference books to quote. As is the case many times, I couldn’t remember where I’d last placed the book. I scoured my yoga bookshelves to no avail—yes I have specific shelves for my prized possessions—there’s shelves in another room for health & nutrition, intuition, self-help, Reiki….need I go on?

Today I was in a bit of a hurry and getting frustrated, so I sent out a request to the Universe to please let me find it sooner rather than later. Suddenly as I was stooped down looking, a flash came across my mind that it was next to our Amish rocking chair by the fireplace, on the floor, in the pile that inevitably forms there. I kid you not! Guess where I found it? Too cool! You may think that I simply “remembered” it, but trust me—this was after several attempts to “remember” and directly after my sending out the request. This “request technique” works the best for me when I’ve been meditating regularly. It’s one of the awesome side benefits of meditating—you make friends with your third eye chakra!

Unfortunately, in today’s day and age, we barely take the time to read a full sentence, let alone take time to be still for any length. Note to self—wouldn’t you like to make an ally of your third-eye chakra, with your intuition? Sudden and sometimes profound insights and moments of inspiration should be the norm, not the anomaly. Your intuition is like a muscle—if you don’t use it, you’ll lose it!

I had recommended a “coincidence journal” in the opening section for ways to show recognition of your magical moments, thus inviting more of them to make themselves known. Recognition of these moments invariably makes them multiply! The same goes for your intuition. You may be relegating your intuitive moments to “coincidence”. When you start writing them down, you’ll realize how consistent they can be with a little attention. http://stress.about.com/od/journaling/a/coincidence.htm.

Another suggestion would be to keep a dream journal. Write down your dreams just after waking up. My regular readers know I’ve referenced the “magical time” between sleep and awake often! This is how I came to name my business “Better Day Yoga”.  Similar to the coincidence journal, and my advice to start noticing your magical moments, the more you ponder your dreams, the more clear and intense they become.

One of my favorite authors and quotable scholars in my yoga classes is Donna Eden. In her excellent book called Energy Medicine, she recommends the following exercise to work with your third eye:

 Very simple exercise to begin opening your third eye

Place your middle finger at the bridge of the nose and push up a couple of inches, breathing deeply and imagining that you are opening the eye lid. Light moves up, from your root chakra, through the second, third, fourth, and fifth chakras, and if you are open, it bends at the sixth chakra and shoots straight out of your third eye. Some people experience it literally as a light or a laser beam. Others experience it more as a feeling. Even if you simply pretend to sense this light, imagine it moving up your spine from the root chakra to your sixth chakra (the third-eye chakra), and feel the light bend and shoot out like a laser from your third eye.

I’m excited to find this exercise as I’ve been doing her “Hook-Up” exercise as part of my “daily energy routine”, and it involves a similar move with the third eye. The sensation I feel with the “Hook-up” is more explained by the sensation she describes above. Cool!

Now I can’t give you a teaser like the above paragraph and not explain the “Hook-Up” exercise, can I? Don’t worry! Here’s an excerpt from her awesome book:

 “The Hook-Up” is “great to do anytime your energies are feeling a bit ‘off’:

1. The Hook-Up creates a connection between your central meridian (which sends energy up the front of your body) and the governing meridian (which sends energy up your spine), bridging the energies between the front and back of your body and between your head and torso.

2. It strengthens your aura.

3. It increases your coordination.

The Hook-Up is one of the most powerful tools I know for quickly centering myself. It has immediate neurological consequences. Several of my students have reported using it with someone who has started to seizure and seen the seizure stop within 15 to 20 seconds.

To do the Hook-up, breath in deeply through your nose and out through your mouth (time—15 to 20 seconds):

1. Place the middle finger of one hand on your third eye (between your eye-brows above the bridge of your nose).

2. Place the middle finger of the other hand on your navel.

3. Gently press each finger into your skin, pull it upward, and hold for 15 to 20 seconds. Often a spontaneous sigh or deep breath signals the energies have been hooked up.”

See the breathwork and visualization below for another experiment she suggests to work with your third eye chakra. This is an awesome lady!

The third eye chakra vibrates to the color indigo. Indigo is one of my absolute favorite colors. The indigo pigment was derived from two of my favorite crystals—azurite and lapis lazuli. Indigo elevates your awareness to the spiritual—think midnight sky. “Contemplation and deep meditation come easier in the indigo depths of night. Night-time is often when inspirations and solutions to problems naturally arise.” ~ Healing with crystals and chakra energies, by Sue and Simon Lilly. Meditation helps develop your third-eye chakra—try meditation under the stars!

I talked about thinking outside the norm to allow for the possibility of magic in my opening section on magical portals. Indigo facilitates that movement from normal to magical. “Those using a lot of indigo energy are able to step away from how the world is usually seen and come up with new and startling ways of thinking.” ~ Healing with crystals and chakra energies, by Sue and Simon Lilly. Perhaps the use of indigo energy is where the phrase “out of the blue” comes from—kind of like my flash of intuitive insight for finding the book earlier.

So another way to stimulate the third-eye / brow chakra is to use put indigo in your life. Indigo will help you “develop sensitivity to the inner senses and intuition”. ~ Healing with crystals and chakra energies, by Sue and Simon Lilly.

My musings on the third eye chakra got me to thinking about magical night skies, “blue (indigo)”, and “moon (writing affirmations during the new moon)” which led me to wonder about the phrase “once in a blue moon”. “Modern interpretation of the term relates to absurdities and impossibilities; the phrase “once in a blue moon” refers to an event that will take place only at incredibly rare occasions”. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_moon. It is considered an “especially magic time”.

We’ve spent this newsletter immersed in the impossible becoming possible—magical portals. Use your third eye chakra to manifest magical moments that become your “norm” and multiply your “once in a blue moon” moments exponentially!

blue-moon

Image Credit: http://architecture.desktopnexus.com/wallpaper/286615/

“If you do not believe in magic, your life will not be magical.  Magic, like the power of Stonehenge, is part of the unknowable—that which you cannot describe, but which exists and makes your life extraordinary.” –The Power Deck, The Cards of Wisdom, by Lynn V. Andrews.

Breathwork and Visualization: 

The following is a continuation of the wisdom of Donna Eden from her Energy Medicine book:

“With your breath calm and deep, direct a question from your sixth chakra down to your root chakra. Let the question settle into the energy of your root chakra. Then call up the light so it moves back up to your sixth chakra, and be open for the answer to reveal itself as you pull up on your eyelid. (Refer to the Very simple exercise to begin opening your third eye explained in the Chakrascope section above.)

I’ve watched dozens of people be amazed when they have suddenly seen, known, or vividly felt an answer appear in front of them. While extended courses are offered in psychic development, experiment with this simple exercise from time to time and remain alert for what you see.”

Source:  Energy Medicine by Donna Eden

Affirmations

  • I allow stillness and silence into my life
  • I allow my divine inner self to guide me
  • My inner wisdom guides me to my true path
  • I am in touch with my inner light
  • I let my fantasy run free
  • I listen to my inner voice
  • I look inward and recognize what is essential
  • I open myself to new energy, new people, places, and experiences
  • I am wise, intuitive, and aligned with my highest good.
  • I open my imagination to see the best in people and things. I also see the best in myself
  • I am the source of truth and love in my life.
  • As I tap into my inner wisdom, I know that all is well in my world.

Sources: The Chakra Energy Plan, The practical 7-step program to balance and revitalize, by Anna Selby.

The Book of Chakras, Discover the Hidden Forces Within You, by Ambika Wauters.

Diet and the Brow / Third Eye Chakra:  Feeding Your Brow Chakra

Awakening Third Eye Senses

  • Dark bluish colored fruits: blueberries, red grapes, black berries, raspberries, etc.
  • Liquids: red wines and grape juice
  • Spices: lavender, poppy seed, mugwort

Source:  http://healing.about.com/od/spiritualdiets/a/chakrafoods.htm

Aromatherapy and the Brow / Third Eye Chakra:  One of my favorite all time scents is a good one to stimulate this chakra—rose geranium! Others include: violet, lemongrass, sandalwood, cedarwood, and cajeput among others. “3 Wise Men” is a Young Living Essential Oil™ that also works to open the third eye.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Brow / Third Eye Chakra:  Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Brow / Third Eye Chakra gems are:  Blue Sapphire—my birthstone—azurite, lapis lazuli, sodalite, kyanite, opal, amethyst, and blue tourmaline, among others. Listen to your inner voice when making your purchase! Placing your gemstones directly in the center of your forehead is a great way to heal this chakra.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products (and her)!

Yoga poses for the Brow / Third Eye Chakra: All yoga poses essentially activate the chakras. Some yoga poses to stimulate the third eye chakra include: If headstand is in your practice, this yoga pose stimulates the third eye chakra. You could also try half headstand.

Since I don’t cue headstand in my class, and due to a neck injury, refrain from practicing headstand, I’ve been using the nifty prop from Gaiam®: Yogacise Body Lift!  It works great!  http://www.gaiam.com/product/yogacise+body+lift.do

Yoga asanas and breathwork are practices to aid you in developing a meditation practice—which, as mentioned many times, stimulates the third chakra!  Stilling the body enables you to journey to your inner magical realm.

 

27
December

Chakra: Heart Chakra (Sanskrit term: Anahata Chakra)

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
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If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season. In 2017 I’m adding doshas (or Ayurvedic body types) to the Chakrascope to deepen our understanding of

green_chakra
The Heart Chakra

The yoga pose I highlighted when this section first appeared in my January 2012 newsletter was on bridge pose which stimulates the heart chakra. January is a time of new beginnings as we listen to our heart. February focuses on Valentines day with a different “heart” focus. We look at the past year and asses where we’ve been and decide where we want to go. Our “resolutions” may or may not get us there, but it’s in our effort to shine our best selves forward that we create “new paths for energy to flow”. Shining our best selves forward is heart chakra territory.

Bridge the wisdom gained from past experience with an openness to learn something new.  Moments of effort accumulate, creating new paths for energy to flow.”  Setu Bandha Sarvangasana / Bridge Pose card from Yoga Path Cards by Susan Woldman.

The Institute of HeartMath tell us that the heart affects mental clarity, creativity, emotional balance, and personal effectiveness. (See their homepage for free resources!)

When you “put your heart into it”, and head and heart are aligned, nothing can stop you. A strong heart chakra will fuel your success. Whether you are reassessing your resolutions, or better still, your intentions, your heart knows what you need. Connecting to your “heart’s desire” becomes more important as we journey through life. If you aren’t taking time to shine, you are merely existing.

“It is better to be happy for a moment and be burned up with beauty than to live a long time and be bored all the while.” ~ Archy and Mehitabel, by Don Marquis.  

A strong heart chakra means we are able to freely give and receive love. The more heart-to-heart connections you have, the brighter your world!

ASCII

What makes your heart sing? Love yourself enough to find out what that is. The world is waiting for it. If you already know, great! Do more of that!  If you can’t right now, for whatever reason, use your heart’s desire to support you until you can. Set a date and time when you will dedicate yourself to your heart’s desire, even if it’s only for a few minutes. Then look forward to it whenever you can. Looking forward to something—anything—that makes you smile will bring joy to all of your moments.

Don’t worry if you are still discovering what makes your heart sing! That’s life! It’s all about discovering “your sense of personal significance”!

“Vision emerges from goals, and these goals change, especially if you are in the midst of a transition. The clearer you can be about what you want, even if it changes a million times, and the less you leave to stumbling along with chance, the more fulfilled you are likely to become. Your brain likes it better that way and cooperates much more.

The bottom line is simply this. You are made to know a sense of personal significance that emerges from the way you make meaning in your life, all of your life. There is always vision for you if you will cooperate with life and not give up living it fully, high in the UpSpiral.

From “Totally Unique Thoughts from the Universe”:

“You don’t even have to know what you want. I’ll take care of that.

Just enjoy that you received another day, and the 10,000 miracles within it.

It’s on me,
    The Universe”

“Your goal is to LIVE YOUR DAY 5 TIMES AS POSITIVE AS IT IS NEGATIVE. That unleashes the genius in you and you begin to discover the zone of the ‘super you’. You dream of it. Why not do it?

Find your good and increase it by putting your energy there. Spend as little time as possible correcting weaknesses. They’ll self-correct as you increase your good.” Applied Neuroscience Institute

Now there’s a thought. “Spend as little time as possible correcting weaknesses.” Isn’t that a relief?! What if we all quit focusing on our weaknesses, and only focused on what makes us happy—on our good? I think we are all way to good at beating ourselves up, aren’t we? Let’s stop the madness! Our heart chakra grows with self-love.

“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and appreciation.” ~ Buddha

Worried that your “heart’s desire” isn’t grand enough? You are the only one who knows what makes you smile. So don’t negate the small things, like reading a book, hugging a loved one, taking a nap, or enjoying a few minutes with your favorite hot chocolate drink. Our heart’s desire doesn’t have to be defined by someone else’s definition of grandeur. It’s while you are enjoying the small things, that you discover other joys. It is in your happiest moments that you let life in. Let life in through small joys, and those small joys will multiply. It’s in the accumulation of small joys that life becomes a joy. Remember? Live your days five times as positive as it is negative! What you focus on expands. Energy follows thought. Make it heart-felt energy.

What do you believe you can’t do?  Have others done it?  “Realize that you have it in you to be as great as they.  Realize that all that they did, all that they learned, all the skilled they acquired is stored safely away in Universal Mind and that through your subconscious mind you already have access to it.”  Secret of the Ages, by Robert Collier.

 

Breathwork and Visualization: 

Inner-Ease™ Technique

A quick and easy-to-learn way to add ease to your life is by practicing the Inner-Ease™ Technique. It takes only a short amount of time.

  1. If you are stressed, acknowledge your feelings as soon as you sense that you are out of sync or engaged in common stressors such as feelings of frustration, impatience, anxiety, overload, anger, being judgmental, mental gridlock, etc.
  2. Take a short time-out and do Heart-Focused Breathing:
  • Breathe a little slower than you normally would.
  • Imagine you are breathing through your heart or chest area.

This has been shown to help create coherent wave patterns in your heart rhythm and help establish balance and calm in your mental and emotional nature while activating the affirming power of your heart.

  1. During Heart-Focused Breathing, imagine with each breath that you are drawing in a feeling of inner ease and infusing your mental and emotional nature with balance and self-care from your heart.
  2. When stressful feelings have calmed, affirm with a heartfelt commitment that you want to anchor and maintain a state of ease as you re-engage in your projects, challenges or daily interactions.

From The State of Ease, by Doc Childre.

Affirmations

  • I love and approve of myself.
  • I am loved, loving, and loveable.
  • I am adequate at all times to do that which is required of me.
  • I love who I am.
  • I am willing to love everything about myself.
  • I trust in love.
  • I open my heart to love.
  • I forgive myself.
  • I forgive those who need forgiving for not being what I wanted them to be.
  • I acknowledge my own loveliness.
  • I am pure, good, and innocent.
  • Love is the purpose of my life.
  • Love is everywhere.
  • I open myself to the healing powers of love.
  • I follow the path of the heart.

Diet and the Heart Chakra: 

  • Leafy vegetables: spinach, kale, dandelion greens, etc.
  • Air vegetables (the heart chakra is associated with the “air” element): broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, celery, squash, etc.
  • Liquids: green teas
  • Spices: basil, sage, thyme, cilantro, parsley

Source:  http://healing.about.com/od/spiritualdiets/a/chakrafoods.htm

 
Aromatherapy and the Heart Chakra
:

Geranium, Jasmine, Lavender, Orange, Rose, Sandalwood, Tangerine, Ylang Ylang, among others.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Heart Chakra: 

Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Heart Chakra gems are: 

Green aventurine, Bloodstone, Verdelite, Jade, Emerald, Moss Agate, Rose Quartz, Watermelon Tourmaline, Pink Tourmaline, Pink Calcite, Rhodochrosite, among others.

If gem therapy interests you, I highly recommend www.crystallinelight.com!

Yoga poses for the Heart Chakra:

All yoga poses essentially activate the chakras. Some yoga poses to stimulate the heart chakra include: Bridge pose (highlighted above), passive backbends as when we arch gently over a bolster, yoga mudra arms, fish pose, camel pose, among others.

The following section did not appear in this Chakrascope when it was first published. I’m expanding upon my past Charkascopes as well as creating new ones going forward!

Your dosha (constitution/body type) and the Heart Chakra:
~

What is a Dosha?

The term “dosha” comes from the sister science to yoga, Ayurveda. Ayurveda means the science of life. Some say the science of self-healing.

Your dosha, or Ayurvedic body type, is associated with the elements—air, ether, fire, water, earth. Those elements combine to create three different doshas/body types. We all are made up of varying quantities of these three doshas. Most of us have a dominant dosha with another one that’s secondary and a bit of the third. The three doshas are Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. From either and air comes Vata, from fire and water comes Pitta, and from water and earth comes Kapha.

Vata is associated with characteristics such as “dry, cold, rough, light, mobile/moving, irregular, sensitive, imaginative, spontaneous, resilient, talkative, and expansive/infectiously happy.”  Pitta is associated with “hot, sharp, intense, impatient, intellectual, confident, outspoken/brave, ambitious, combative, jealous, spreading/fluid. Kapha is associated with “calm, wet, heavy, slow, dull, static, enduring, sympathetic, relaxed, forgiving, loving, stable, dense”.

Knowing your particular body type/constitution empowers you to know literally “what you’re made of”—what makes you tick. You know your dominant characteristics. Getting curious about what’s going on inside your body is my main theme in my yoga classes. Why not make it the main theme in your whole life? Once you know your dominant constitution, you can make choices in your lifestyle to stay in balance, to become whole. Wholeness means healing. Becoming whole means you are giving your body what it needs. You’ll know immediately what throws you off and what centers you. You can use this knowledge to get to know yourself better, to get to know yourself deeper. Looking at the characteristics associated with each dosha, keep in mind that your personal “rain barrel” is already filled with those characteristics so adding more of the same into your life will take you off balance. Your rain barrel will overflow. Adding the opposite characteristics into your daily regimen will keep you centered.

So if you’re a Vata, like me, you know that warmth, moisture and ritual/routine in all forms (be it food, clothing, or environment) will be soothing to this cold, dry, mobile body. Get the idea?

Getting back to the heart chakra

In yoga, as in Ayurveda, the heart is considered the energetic hub of the body. The heart chakra is the bridge between the bottom, more physical chakras, and the upper, more spiritual chakras. As mentioned earlier, the heart chakra element is air. The area where our heart chakra is located contains our lungs and breathing muscle, the diaphragm. Knowing that Vata is associated with the air element makes the heart chakra associated with Vata. (Vata is also associated with the throat chakra.)

Just as the heart chakra deals with compassion, the sensitive Vata responds well to compassionate natures. Surround yourself with friends who leave you feeling better vs. drained and activities that correspond to your heart’s desire as we talked about earlier.

Vata governs all movement in our bodies such as blood flow and circulation, another deep connection to the heart. As mentioned earlier, Vatas respond well to warm, moist foods and as well as ritual and routine. So planning is helpful! Routines and rituals help to ease stress. Probably Vata’s most important function is that it governs the nervous system. We all know what stress can do the heart. One of the signs of an imbalanced Vata is anxiety which can be caused by too much chaos, too much movement. Instilling slow, grounding rituals like yoga, breath practices (like the one above) and meditation will go a long way toward soothing Vata and balancing your heart chakra.

Want more of this? Stay-tuned for my next Chakrascope! Want to know YOUR dosha and start to use the power of your dosha to gain health and vitality? Check out my YogaLean 12-Week Transformation Workshop! We reference the doshas throughout the 12 weeks and empower you to create wholeness by befriending your body. Here are some links to various quizzes to determine your own body type: The Chopra Center, Dr. Oz, the Ayurvedic Institute, and Banyan Botanicals are just a few that are on the web. Enjoy!

 

27
October

The Sacral Chakra and the Circle

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on The Sacral Chakra and the Circle Tagged with

 

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.


Image Credit:  http://howtoopenchakras.com/sacral-chakra/

In the opening section, I noted that the circle was associated with the sacral chakra. Since this month’s section is dedicated to the circle, let’s explore the sacral chakra! In the Meditation on the Go section I introduced mandalas and yantras as forms of meditation. The image above is a yantra for the sacral chakra. Each chakra has a yantra associated with it. So if you are considering using mandalas or yantras as a form of meditation, and want to work on a particular chakra, find the yantra that is associated with the chakra you are focusing on to meditate upon.

The sacral chakra is located near the “sacrum”, genital and kidney area of the body. In a woman, it is associated with the womb. Given that the circle is considered the creative center or “womb” for geometric shapes and patterns, as mentioned in my opener, you can understand the connection to the sacral chakra.

The element of the sacral chakra is water, going with the flow—going with the flow in the circle of life. Wherever we are in the circle of life, life is meant to be enjoyed and savored. This chakra is about enjoying the sweetness of life which corresponds to the sense of taste. It is the home of your emotions, creativity, and sensuality.

The Sanskrit term for this chakra translates to “the sacred home of the self” and “the sweet place”, among others. It’s location near the sacrum also has significance. “Sacrum” comes from the Latin word meaning “holy” or “sacred’, echoing the elements of the “sacred” circle outlined earlier. Remember the circle was considered the womb of sacred geometry, and geometric patterns and shapes represented the Universe, our Source, our Gods and Goddesses. These definitions remind us that enjoying the sweetness of life is a sacred act empowering us to create the life our Creator meant for us to live.

As we dive into this holiday season, many of us attempt to create sweetness and enjoyment for our loved ones while forgetting our own happiness. This chakra reminds us that you can only give what you already contain inside. Perhaps if you viewed your own happiness and enjoyment as a prerequisite to being able to provide it for others, you’d feel less guilty. Guilt is another element associated with this chakra.

Sometimes guilt is appropriate, and sometimes it’s not. When you feel guilty for experiencing enjoyment and pleasure, you are denying your right to feel. We each have a basic right to feel. You can’t cut off your emotions and expect to live a passion, joy-filled life just as you can’t expect to create joy for another without first feeling it for yourself. So let joy in! Be open to it!

Allow this season to bubble up with joy inside of you—even in the mundane tasks. Commit to choosing joy. Here are some of the ways I “call out” the joy waiting to be experienced:

  • Snow can create worry and stress over the need to shovel it, leave early for your destination to allow for driving in it, and dress in layers to stay warm in it. Remember how much you loved snow as a child? A couple of years ago I decided to bring back the play time that came with snow. I commit to making a snow angel whenever I’m outside in the snow. Last year I think I got to the upper teens—clearly room for improvement!
    (Side bonus compliments of Prevention magazine’s December issue:  “Getting outside during a cold snap can do your body good:  There’s evidence that the temporary physical stress of being cold—whether it’s the result of being outside on a freezing day or taking a cold shower—may strengthen the immune system. In fact, athletes use a form of cold treatment known as cryotherapy to recover from hard training. Best of all, the cold bite of a winter day may even help burn body fat, according to a study from the New England Journal of Medicine.)
  • My husband and I have had a Christmas party each year since we’ve been married. The decorating can be overwhelming and takes quite a bit of time. When I noticed that “dread” was replacing the joy of the season the decorations were meant to bring out, I started decorating earlier to allow for a more leisurely pace. I also play seasonal music, hum or sing along, and have mulled wine while decorating the tree. One of the main purposes of the sacral chakra is to promote movement. So dance to the music that surrounds you! Make each moment a dance!
  • Playing seasonal music, or any music that brings you joy, also helps when I’m in the car on the long snowy drives, as does humming or singing along! Try it! See my January 2011 newsletter for more on the benefits of humming:   https://betterdayyoga.com/tag/january-2011.
    Music makes each of us feel something. By acting as a gateway to emotional stimulation, music can motivate and inspire, life and build; it can also depress, anger and intensify. What is it that makes us so sensitive to music’s sound waves?As Christi Bonds-Garret, MD, taught during a profound lecture during Young Living’s 2011 Convention in Orlando, Florida, it is because we are composed mostly of water that we are easily influenced by the positivity and negativity produced by sound waves and their frequencies.’We are water. Newborns are 90 percent water and adults are 70 percent water,’ states Dr. Bonds-Garrett. ‘It’s easy to see how we are so easily affected.'” The Essential Edge News by Young Living Essential Oils, Volume 1, Issue 7). Also see my November 2010 newsletter’s “Featured Deck” section for more on the effects of words and music on our body:  https://betterdayyoga.com/tag/november-2010
  • Wear something festive every day, even if it’s only placing a pin on your coat for the season. Decorate your work area if it’s appropriate. Pull out a seasonal mug or plate and use it throughout the season. Every time you see or use these items, you are announcing to yourself that it’s time to enjoy and celebrate life!
  • Participate in your favorite rituals of the season. Mine include lighting candles, opening the days on an advent calendar, and caroling at our annual party. Let’s not forget the mulled wine on tree decorating day! Lighting a candle invites spirit into your day and takes only a moment.
  • Be someone’s secret Santa. The idea behind this one is to do something unexpectedly nice for someone else. It might be paying the toll for the car behind you as you travel to see relatives, buying someone’s meal anonymously when you’re shopping at the mall and see a deserving family or Vet, or shoveling your neighbor’s drive. Giving when it’s unexpected is not the same as giving out of obligation. The joy will well up inside of you. Try it—you’ll see!
  • Create your own special evening alone or with a loved one. It can include a hot bath with candles, watching a favorite movie, giving yourself or a loved one a foot massage, sitting in front of a fire, and reading your favorite book.
  • Make it a point to kiss or hug a loved one every time you see them and perhaps shout “We have fun, don’t we?!” Calling out the moments allows them to be enjoyed.
  • Make it a point to smile as big as you can to everyone you see. At first this may seem uncomfortable if you’re not used to it, but after awhile, you’ll start to feel unusual when you aren’t smiling! My husband and I do this regularly—we lovingly refer to it as “monkey face” since it resembles a gregarious monkey smiling from ear to ear. We always add a tip back of the head as though we are shining the smile out with all of our might. It brings joy to the “smile-er” and the “smile-ee”.

I know you can come up with some ideas of your own! What brings you joy? What can you do right now to increase the pleasure you allow into your life? Embrace what makes your life worth living and if you don’t know what that is; make it your goal to find out!

This chakra reminds you that your pleasure is yours to create! Find your passion! Decide that now is the time to do something, anything that makes you smile! Remember that sometimes it takes effort to smile, and then the smile becomes real. You have a right to feel. What do you want to feel right now? Create it!

Breathwork and Visualization: 

“Before you start, choose a leisurely and relaxed time to meditate. Create an atmosphere with oils, candles, or incense. Tape the words if you like. Dots indicate a pause.

1. As you lie motionless, become aware of change and movement that continues in your body…your heartbeat…blood flow around your body….cellular activity that invisibly rejuvenates your whole being. Your every breath celebrates life…nourishing you with everything you need for a healthy, enjoyable life.

2. Focus on the gentle movement of your abdomen as you breathe. Imagine it filled with a warm, orange glow, representing joy and vitality, both of which are available to you in abundance…

3. Bring to mind a pleasurable experience…Recollect all the senses that will bring that moment back to life for you now…Remember how you felt…the colors around you…textures…shapes…sounds…smells…tastes.

4. Shift that image to your abdomen so that the warm, orange glow suffuses it, magnifying the experience and making it even more satisfying and joyous… Surrender your body to the pleasures of that moment…something you deserve to experience every day of your life, and can have again every time you put your mind to it…

5. Know that your life can be a succession of wonderful, beneficial experiences if you choose it to be so…Determine to look for the opportunities, the love, the joy, and the fun in all you do today. You deserve it.”

Source:  The Book of Chakra Healing by Liz Simpson

Second meditation compliments of Cyndi Dale’s new book, Energetic Boundaries:  “A circle promotes relationships, harmony, and connection. A circle envisioned between two or more people (or living beings) invites an exchange of energy. Check the energy. If it’s bright and loving, the swap is positive. If it’s negative, the exchange is hurting you and creating a syndrome.

Establishing a circle around ourselves, through any or all of the energetic boundaries, will emphasize wholeness and send an energy of love to others. It will also create a ‘sacred circle,’ a protected space that only love can enter. You can also psychically draw a circle around a part of you, such as an inner child or an idea, and keep it secure.

If you constantly pick up energy from others or the environment, go a step further and imagine a circle (a silver one is best) drawn under your feet and moving everywhere you move. This circle will cleanse the ground you walk on and shimmer upward through your entire field, deflecting negative energies.”

Affirmations

  • I am moving toward a time when I am totally happy and fulfilled.
  • Life offers me everything I need for that journey.
  • I am worthy of love and pleasure.
  • I have a right to express my desires to myself and others.
  • Who I am is good enough.
  • Life is unfolding as it should be.
  • I love my life.
  • I honor my body and treat myself respectfully.
  • I feel the power of healing moving in and through me as I affirm my worth and honor my body.
  • I trust my feelings and give them ample room for expression.
  • I lighten my body each time I feel well in myself.
  • I am a creature of light, open to my highest joy.
  • I am grateful for the joy of being me.
  • I receive pleasure and abundance with every breath I take.
  • Goodness, beauty and joy resonate with my soul.
  • I am entitled to happiness, health and joy in my life.
  • Healing occurs each time I rest, relax and enjoy myself.
  • My body responds to thoughts of pure love and goodness.
  • I know my body always seeks balance and regeneration.
  • I get stronger every time I affirm my worth and honor my choices for love.
  • There is nothing to change about the way I am.
  • Nobody needs to fix or heal me. I reclaim my power to look after myself.
  • I unconditionally love who I am, exactly as I am.
  • I give others the space that they need and love them just as they are.
  • As I love and respect myself, healing happens naturally.

Sources: The Book of Chakra Healing by Liz Simpson
http://inspirationsatsang.blogspot.com/2010/06/sixth-chakra-affirmations.html

 

Diet and the Sacral Chakra:

Since the sacral chakra’s element is water, adding more liquid into your diet is essential. Water is the liquid of choice! Soup, hot tea, and fresh juices are all good! The sacral chakra vibrates to the color orange so add orange colored foods to your diet such as carrots, mangoes, tangerines and oranges.


Aromatherapy and the Sacral Chakra
:

Jasmine, Rose, Sandalwood.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.


Gem therapy and the Sacral Chakra
: 

Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Sacral Chakra gems are:  Citrine, Carnelian, Golden topaz

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!


Yoga poses for the Sacral Chakra:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras. Some yoga poses to stimulate the sacral chakra include: Supine butterfly pose, pelvic tilts while in bridge pose, goddess squat pose, and fish pose.

27
September

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

I chose the third eye chakra this month because it is the center of the true self.  “Your true self will attract unlimited resources, power, and compassion to realize your destiny.”  www.AlohaBay.com Ajna (Third eye chakra) candle for abundance.

This month I focus on creating your own empowerment and magic.  This chakra is also often associated with the color purple/violet—the color of my feathers in the wreath headdress—or indigo blue, the hints of which are in the crow feathers—my magical yoga pose this month.

Creating your own enchanted life by dropping the barriers to your real/ideal/higher self is what the third eye chakra energy teaches us. A healthy third eye chakra means you are the master of yourself.  You show the real you to the world.  You rely on your own energy to manifest your life.  You need no one else’s approval or energy.

As I searched for the image for the third-eye chakra, this one jumped out at me for several synchronistic reasons. The energy of feathers encompasses the throat/communication chakra, as outlined earlier with my purple feather wreath. (Goose feather quills were the first writing elements.)  The yoga poses for the month also activate the communication chakra, and Thoth (the central character in this image) is associated with writing—a form of communication. He is credited with being the inventor of writing in ancient Egypt.

Along with Thoth, appears the symbol for the Goddess Isis (the protective eagle wings at the top of the image). There are those feathers again!  Both Isis and Thoth are Egyptian religious figures and both are associated with magic—this month’s theme.

The Eye of Horus (a powerful symbol of healing and protection in ancient Egypt) completes the image at the bottom—often associated with the “third eye”. The Eye of Horus is also known as the Eye of Ra.  Isis, the mother of Horus, convinced Ra to share his “secret name” which entitled her to receive a complete understanding of high magic.

Meditation activates the third eye chakra. It was during my morning meditation today that I had the insight to incorporate Isis in my newsletter this month, but I wasn’t sure how and dismissed the idea. Then this image for the third-eye chakra popped up in my search.  I knew it was meant to be. I’ve learned to accept these insights I receive as inclinations for which path to follow.  I’ve learned this through my third eye/intuition chakra.

Why Isis?  Along with the Blessed Virgin Mary (my mantra in my morning meditation is the “Hail Mary”/ “Ave Maria” salutation), I believe Quan Yin, Tara, Athena, White Buffalo Woman, Lakshmi, and yes Isis, among others, all embody the “Divine Mother”—the loving, nurturing, magical healing energy. I believe they are different representations of the same energy and embody different forms so they’ll appear in the correct form for you to accept.  We are only open to that which we believe in—yes?  So why wouldn’t “Divine Mother” energy embody many forms for all the world to appreciate?

Knowing that Isis is also known as the “Lady of Magic” was my first thought on how to include her in this month’s newsletter—this newsletter has a magical theme after all.  Then all the other connections came out as I wrote.  It was kismet.  You don’t have to believe me when I say that sometimes I feel the newsletter is dictated to me.

I really had no idea when I woke this morning as to which chakra I would highlight this month.  I wasn’t even sure when I had the inclination to use Isis in the newsletter. I didn’t associate Isis with the third eye chakra. It was the image for the third-eye chakra that tied it all together.

I always burn a candle when I write my newsletters.  Lighting a candle  invites spirit in. I always knew this “intuitively” and have been lighting candles to create a meditative moment for years. I chose the Ajna candle this morning because the quote on it, referenced earlier, echoed the theme in my opener to find your true self by finding what makes you feel magical and empowered. It is a purple candle—the color of my magical feather wreath.  I wondered then if it was a sign to highlight this chakra this month.

Again, I didn’t associate Isis with the third eye chakra.  It was the image for the third eye chakra that tied it all together.  I am still in wonder of it all.

By explaining how I chose this month’s chakra, I’ve explained how to follow your intuition, your third eye.  Being open to receive guidance is the first step.  Learn to honor and respect the flashes of insight you receive.  Don’t discount them as imaginings. Remember sometimes the Universe talks in subtleties.  If you aren’t looking for them, they won’t “land” in you.  They’ll go by unnoticed.  Let me remind you of the Yoga Quote appearing at the top of the newsletter:

“That’s the thing with magic. You’ve got to know it’s still here, all around us, or it just stays invisible for you.” ~ Charles de Lint

Your intuition is magic.  Your third eye chakra contains magic!  And it’s all within you!

 —Breathwork and Visualization: 

“Picture Isis standing behind you with her eagle wings extended, as if you have wings yourself.  As you breathe, feel her powers infused within you.  Notice the loving and graceful energy of her strength. Be aware of the blissful feelings of peace as you say:

“Beautiful Isis, goddess of peaceful power, please infuse me with your graceful strength and your loving confidence. Help me be like you:  refined, poised, confident, and loving.  Help me soar like an eagle in all ways.  Inspiring and helping others as I fly high.  Thank you.”

Source:  Archangels and Ascended Masters.  A Guide to Working and Healing with Divinities and Deities, by Doreen Virtue, PhD.

Affirmations

  • I believe I am unlimited in my capacity for joy, healing and happiness.
  • The abundance of the universe is always available to me.
  • I open myself to new energy, new people, places and experiences.
  • I live in the light of my truth and I accept what I know.
  • I know I am full of grace, light and love.
  • I create clarity of mind and unlimited vision for myself.
  • I trust that my life is unfolding exactly as it should.
  • I am wise, intuitive and aligned with my highest good.
  • Every situation is an opportunity for growth and healing.
  • I live in the light of my higher mind and allow it to illuminate my life.
  • I seek wisdom and guidance in all situations.
  • I am the source of truth and love in my life.

Sources:  http://inspirationsatsang.blogspot.com/2010/06/sixth-chakra-affirmations.html

Diet and the Third-eye Chakra: 
Since meditation is the best way to access the sixth chakra, there are some that say the best diet would be less food, or fasting if it’s appropriate for your health. Never fast to lose weight.  (Always check with a doctor before any diet, and especially if you are going to try any type of fasting.)  Other ways of bringing it into balance include eating intentionally, focusing on your food while you are eating, talking about the food you are eating with those you share meals with, etc.

Foods that nourish the sixth chakra include:  Spices such as caraway, coriander, cumin, fenugreek, ginger, nutmeg, turmeric, and many others.  Dark blue/purple foods containing antioxidants which destroy free radicals in the body include eggplant, purple kale, blueberries, figs, plums, purple grapes, raisins, among others.  Black currants (in addition to blueberries already mentioned) are known to benefit the eyes.

Caffeine, chocolate and alcohol can overly stimulate the sixth chakra when consumed to excess.  I know, I know.  I love dark chocolate covered almonds, but there’s something to be said for stopping after a few.

Aromatherapy and the Third-eye Chakra:  Frankincense, Basil (surprisingly relaxing), Holy Basil, lemon, juniper, sandalwood, rosemary, rose geranium, and lavender

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Third-Eye Chakra:  Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Third-Eye Chakra gems are:  Lapis lazuli azurite, sodalite, quartz crystal, diamond, emerald, sapphire, azurite, larimar, amethyst, cat’s eye or tiger’s eye.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for the Third Eye Chakra:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.  The yoga pose of the month, crow/crane pose—as do all balancing poses—activates the third eye chakra.  They prepare you for meditation. Meditation, visualization, and breathwork/pranayama also activate the third eye chakra.  Other Yoga poses that stimulate the sixth chakra include, headstand prep/dolphin pose, downward facing dog, child’s pose; and if headstand is in your practice, headstand pose.

Image Source:  http://www.algonet.se/~anki-p/anubis-eyes.jpg

27
August

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.  If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

This month I’m resolving a question about the heart chakra that I have dwelled on for a few years.  In my May 2011 newsletter, I mentioned that I was told once by Cyndi Dale, a local but internationally known chakra energy expert, that in matters of my heart chakra, if I could figure out how to add pink and gold to the green color there, it would help.  She prefaced it with, “I know this may not make sense right now, but..”  This was said during a 15-minute break in a presentation at a class she was presenting and I was in a long line of those waiting to ask her a question.  So I didn’t push for more.  I didn’t want to abuse her time.  After all, I’d paid for a class presentation and not a one-on-one!  No, I didn’t schedule that one-on-one for various reasons, but I’ve dwelled on what she told me many times. I had been familiar with pink being another color for the heart chakra besides green, but I wasn’t aware of a different interpretation for the meaning of that color in the heart chakra.  I also had not heard of gold being a heart chakra color.

I used The Secret Language of your Body, by Inna Segal to uncover the meaning of the colors pink and gold in that newsletter. It wasn’t until I “consulted” an old deck of cards I hadn’t worked with in awhile that I really felt a click that answered, for me, what Cyndi might have been referring to.

See my “Featured Deck” section below.  I am a bit of a collector of decks of cards to connect with the messages the Universe might be trying to tell me.  This month’s “Featured Deck” is The Harmony Angel Cards deck by Angela McGerr, and has been in my possession since before we moved to Minneapolis over 16 years ago.  I own a couple of her books as well.  Excellent author!  The Breathwork/Visualization chosen below is from the book by her of the same name.  What a beautiful book!  The illustrations alone are worth the price of the book!

Too bad I hadn’t been consulting that deck more often because one card brought home the message Cyndi Dale gave to me during her presentation.  “The Sacred Lotus Flower” (featured in full below) is “The card of innermost healing and love:  The Heart Chakra.”  It was an “aha” moment when I read with awe the concept of two heart chakras—a green chakra and a “magenta” chakra.  I immediately remembered Cyndi Dale referring to adding pink to my heart chakra.  Magenta is sometimes referred to as “ultra pink”, “shocking pink”, or “fuchsia pink”. I also found another card in the deck (also highlighted below) referring to the second heart chakra as pink and then “magenta”.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Variations_of_magenta

“The green chakra represents love of a personal nature, i.e. of partner, friends, and family.  Perhaps this has been closed or damaged by rejection or loss.  The angels help you resolve pain with forgiveness, reopening and healing the green chakra, enabling you to move to the magenta chakra.  This encompasses pure, universal love, which has no self-interest but merely seeks to serve all life.  When you can feel universal love, you ignite your heart’s ember into a magenta flame, which soars heavenward to reconnect you with the golden (Maitreya) ray of divine love.  This love flows back to your heart, into your innermost consciousness, opening the gateway to Higher self and filling you with joy and bliss beyond imagining.” The Harmony Angel Cards deck by Angela McGerr.

I always personally, perhaps intuitively, interpreted Cyndi Dale’s suggestion to mean exactly the above.  I’ve visualized pink and gold in my chakra energy work as I say the affirmation/mantra “People’s lives are made better by my efforts” since it is my goal to do so with the work I do.  This was a great confirmation for me.

Further research into magenta came up with equal meaning: 

“Magenta is important in Goethe’s colour theory and in the printing trade. Stimulates the flow of energy. This colour is heaven on earth and the need for it. Because magenta has the hidden colours of red (which is the earth colour) and violet (which is the heavenly colour) within, it can convey the same healing qualities of those colours. Magenta uplifts a person emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Inspires creativity to serve another without requiring acceptance of others. Acting for the cause.http://www.onehealsone.com/13chakras.php?cid=13

“Magenta Ray of energy … which touches your heart chakra. The magenta ray of unconditional love creates a blanket of comforting and nurturing energy within and around your heart chakra, reaffirming to you, your inner child, and adolescent selves that it is completely safe for you to let go of the conditionings that have manifested as limitation, pain or suffering. This magenta ray will continue to affirm that you are truly ready to embrace unconditional love and trust the new system you are creating which represents and reflects all aspects of abundant living.” http://martamachabeli.blogspot.com/2009/01/magenta-phase.html

One site says the magenta chakra is connected to the crown chakra and allows a connection to your personal guides and your Higher self.  http://www.eaglespiritministry.com/pd/sdc/sdc3.htm.  While yet another says the magenta chakra is the crown chakra—The Magenta chakra is your spiritual connection. This chakra links you to the cosmos so you can reach your higher potential. It is the energy of knowingness and enlightenment.  http://www.reiki-healinghands.co.uk/pages/what-do-you-know-about-your-chakra-system.php.  It’s interesting that some consider the crown chakra to be gold.  There’s that connection between magenta and gold again!  I love synchronicity!

This last website suggests ways to incorporate “magenta energy” into your life.  I think it’s worth highlighting a couple. Here’s my take on two:

  1. Allowing the Universe to work through you gives you more creative energy.  Believing that it’s all up to you depletes you. Believing that you have access to all the energy you’ll need when you have the best interests of others at heart—that’s using your magenta energy.

Notice I used the term “at heart”?  I believe the magenta heart chakra really is an extension of the crown chakra.  The crown chakra is about being one with the world.  How better to do that than to serve the world—“to serve all life” as the angel card described the magenta heart chakra?  When you have the best interests of others at heart—this is the “pure, universal love, which has no self interest but merely seeks to serve all life”.  You can shine as bright as you want when your shining brightens others.  The Universe will support your every effort when your goal is to benefit all of life.  This is one of the Universal Laws.  It can be no other way.

  1. Quiet contemplation, meditation and yoga are ways to incorporate magenta energy into your life—a continuing theme from my opening section. I don’t have to tell you that yoga and meditation are very important parts of my life.  I spoke about the benefits of meditation in my opening section, and my newsletter is dedicated to the benefits of yoga.  Do more yoga.

“If you practice yoga once or twice a week you will change your day; three or four times a week, you will change your body; five or more times a week, you will change your life.” ~ Unknown author.

Breathwork and Visualization:

“*Haniel’s pink mirror of love:  a technique to protect good listeners

This visualization can be enormously helpful in dealing with either family quarrels or people who regard you as their problem solver.

Often in life we are at the receiving end of negativity; this is particularly relevant to those of us who are good listeners.  There are those (often relatives or close friends) who are full of strong emotions, such as anger, bitterness, or sadness, and who therefore need to unload their feelings in order to feel better.  There are others who are merely rather unhappy or unfulfilled people, who want to whine about their pessimistic lot in life to someone who will listen, and then there are people who are simply rather pessimistic by nature about anything and everything.  There are people who always see half a glass of wine as half-empty rather than half full.

Whichever of the above may apply in your case, the result can be that after you are in the company of such people for a while, they may indeed feel better after talking to you, but you feel dragged down by their negativity.  This can be very damaging to your own energy levels if allowed to continue over a long period of time, and if the person is a member of your own family, you may not be able to escape.

This exercise not only will help to prevent such damage to you but also, if practiced over a period of time, will start to engender a more positive attitude on the other party.

When you are the victim of an argument or other negative conversation, imagine a large but invisible circular mirror between yourself and the other person.  The mirror faces toward your companion, and because you create it with love, it reflects back pink light representing the power of your love.  When the dark, negative energy reaches this mirror, it will not be able to penetrate through to reach you, and at the same time it will be converted by the love you have placed inside the mirror and then reflected back as, positive energy to your companion.

Because the mirror is transforming the energy from negative back to positive, you are actually benefiting the other person, while protecting yourself from being undermined.  If the problem is with someone living with you, try to continue the visualization over three seven-day cycles.  If you do this, you can actually begin to change his or her attitude permanently, and this is certainly worth striving for.”

(*Haniel is the angel of love, compassion, & beauty.)

Source:  A harmony of ANGELS, by Angela McGerr

Affirmations

  • I can shine as bright as I want
  • The Universe is conspiring for my full expression!
  • I am a radiant being filled with light and love
  • I am here to express love
  • People’s lives are made better by my efforts
  • I am a reflection of joy
  • My life’s work is deeply fulfilling
  • I live a life filled with peace, passion, and joy!
  • Joy is my reason for living
  • I am a reflection of joy!
  • I am committed to helping others
  • I look for the joy in myself and see it in all things
  • I delight in sharing my joy
  • I am believing in myself and my gifts
  • I follow my heart’s desire for truth and goodness and love
  • Today I can climb a mountain!  I am energy uplifting my own heart—I know that my strength is limitless and will never fail!

Sources:  The Book of Chakras.  Discover the hidden forces within you, by Ambika Wauters

The Secret, by Rhonda Byrne

Julie Lyden, www.movingbeyondyourself.com

http://www.intentionalserenity.com/

The last affirmation:  An Illustrated Book of Personal Power by Colista Lich (new, awesome, powerful, whimsical author I just discovered on vacation!)

 

Diet and the Heart Chakra:  Green tea, green leafy vegetables, apples, basil, oregano, parsley, among others.

Aromatherapy and the Heart Chakra:  Lavender, Jasmine, and Magnolia.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Heart Chakra:  Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Heart Chakra gems are:  Malachite, Green Tourmaline, and Jade. Magenta stones would be Quartz Crystal, Ruby, WatermelonTourmaline, Rose Quartz, and Opal.

Other ways to incorporate magenta into your life:
Bathe in the magenta color in your clothing; breathe in color, decor, art, etc.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for the Heart Chakra:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.  Some heart chakra-specific poses would be:  Bow pose, Camel pose, Hanuman pose, among others.

27
July

In Sanskrit, Kundalini means ‘life energy’.

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on In Sanskrit, Kundalini means ‘life energy’. Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Had any of your own God-winks lately?  I had my own personal God-wink as I started to write this month’s newsletter featuring the CEO of a wonderful, resourceful, interesting, inspiring, Kundalini Yoga website, Yogamint.com.  One of my students had heard yoga referred to as creating “bad snake energy” and wondered just what that meant.  I told her to tune in to this newsletter!

So what is this “bad snake energy”?  It’s “Kundalini” and it has sometimes gotten a “bad rap”.

Since kundalini energy activates and awakens the seven chakras, I’m using kundalini as the topic for my “Chakrascope” this month.  As referenced above, the folks at Yogamint all practice Kundalini Yoga. “Kundalini-based yoga …improves asthma, diabetes, pain, and stress-related disorders, and it decreases blood pressure, heart rate, metabolism, and breathing rate. These effects in turn lead to lower anxiety and depression, healing of heart irregularities, decreased anger, treatment of insomnia, and even aid fertility.

In Sanskrit, Kundalini means ‘life energy’.  Known as the serpent energy in Hinduism, the first culture known to have labeled this mysterious force, kundalini is the natural divine energy inside of you.  Your kundalini is the life force of your body that, when fully activated, leads to living as an enlightened sage.

If you were able to fully draw on your kundalini, the life force that lies within, what might you do?  Well, you could lasso the stars and pull them to earth, plant your dreams in the soil and grow love, laugh in the wind, and heal the world.  You could write your name in the water, author your life, and sing with the Divine.

At some level, kundalini has already been accomplishing all this and more for you.  You’ve already been exercising its enchantment to become the great person you are.  As mysterious as its name and as magical as its origin, kundalini has been pulsing in your body since you were conceived, performing tasks as basic as igniting the electricity in your cells and as elusive as attracting others to you.  Kundalini is a god energy, and as such, it nourishes your uniqueness and upholds your sacred vocation.  Since it originates from the Divine Source, it also interconnects you with all living beings, as well as with the Divine itself.  Because of these connections, to tap into your kundalini is to open the channel to your intuition, to begin to hear the messages in the wind, to receive revelations colored with inspiration, and to know the unknowable.  In short, kundalini allows you to be you—and encourages others to be themselves.”  Kundalini Divine Energy & Divine Life by Cyndi Dale.

Hardly “bad snake energy” now is it?  How many of you want more of that?!  Kundalini is typically described as a serpent which lies coiled and dormant at the base of our spine until activated or awakened.  “When kundalini wakes up, it primarily travels upward through our various energy bodies and channels, parts of the energetic anatomy that create and sustain our physical body.  Energy is information that vibrates, and guess what kundalini does?  It shakes up the energy of our body, mind, and soul.

The kundalini first rises through energy channels along our spine.  These energy channels are called the nadis, and as the kundalini climbs through them, it activates the seven chakra energy centers also positioned along our spine, our center axis, and connecting our spiritual and physical selves.” Kundalini Divine Energy & Divine Life by Cyndi Dale.

Cyndi Dale explains how she’s used kundalini energy to write a five-hundred page book in three months, to chase off an attacker, and daily to keep up (almost) with her two sons, five animals, and a house that doesn’t clean itself.  She says kundalini energy has changed her life.

“Cyndi has presented seminars and workshops in Russia, England, Wales, Amsterdam, Iceland, Scotland, and has led groups across South and Central America and into Africa.

Her training has encompassed studies in shamanism and healing across the world, taking her into the Peruvian, Belizean, Hawaiian, and Costa Rica jungles, the Moroccan sands, the Venezuelan savannahs, the glaciers of Iceland, and other exciting places. She seeks to unify the world’s most vital spiritual messages, encouraging understanding and community among all peoples. On a daily basis, Cyndi works with clients and groups, serving as an intuitive coach and an energy healer. Clients are commonly referred by professionals, including psychiatrists, medical doctors, and therapists.” http://cyndidale.com/about-2.

I met Cyndi several years ago at the Learning Annex/Open U where she gave a presentation on chakras.  I believe it was entitled:  Attracting Prosperity Through the Chakras. She was concise, energetic, entertaining, and spot-on to what I wanted to get out of the class.  I would recommend her highly as both a speaker and an author.  I own several of her books.  So when she says she is in awe of kundalini energy and uses it for good, I am more than comfortable saying that kundalini is NOT “bad snake energy”.

As Cyndi Dale describes it, “It is a divine light here to shine on who you are an in all that you do.  In that it unifies all aspects of you, it links you with life everywhere.  You could say that to participate in kundalini is to sip from the communion cup of the Divine.” 

Kundalini is energy.  Can energy sometimes end up not being “good”?  Well, can an electrical surge blow your fuse?  Does that mean you don’t ever want to use electricity?  Of course not!  The key to “awakening” kundalini energy is to do it gently and slowly.  “But know this:  you can’t do kundalini wrong.  The Divine has a way of knowing what we need and offering it to us.”  Kundalini Divine Energy & Divine Life by Cyndi Dale.   

There’s a whole chapter in Cyndi’s book about the science of kundalini energy.  This chapter discusses possible theories for kundalini’s effectiveness defined through quantum physics, electrical energy, biomechanical movement of our bodies, hormonal, and the spine and central nervous system.  She emphasizes that it’s not just yoga and breathwork that will work with kundalini, but other mind/body practices such as meditation, Qigong, and tai-chi. You also don’t have to be any particular religion.

There are those, for example, that equate kundalini with the Holy Spirit. “Kundalini energy is what Christians call ‘the power of the Holy Ghost’. This power of the Holy Ghost is located in the Sacrum Bone. The Greeks called it ‘sacrum’ meaning ‘sacred’.”
http://www.adishakti.org/_/kundalini_and_christian_experience.htm.

Philip St. Romain, a practicing Catholic devoted to a life of prayer, wrote a book about his personal experience with kundalini energy:  http://www.kundaliniawakeningsystems1.com/downloads/kundalini_and_christianity.pdf.

Thus, for a Christian at least, it is essential that their energy be directed by the Holy Spirit. In Christian spirituality, the unfolding of the stages of prayer described by St. Teresa of Avila in the Interior Castle may be the fruit of the kundalini energy arising under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. http://shalomplace.com/view/kundalini.html.

Even Carl Jung, the famous psychologist, found kundalini to be an interesting topic:  “You see, the Kundalini in psychological terms is that which makes you go on the greatest adventures. …It is the quest that makes life livable, and this is Kundalini; this is the divine urge.” The Psychology of Kundalini Yoga, Carl Jung. Lecture 1, 12 October 1932, Notes of the Seminar, Princeton University Press, USA, 1996, Page 21.  http://www.austinsahajayoga.org/carl_jung.html.

Bottom line, you are responsible for your own development.  If working with kundalini energy interests you, you get to decide your own experience with your own research and open mind. I consider working with kundalini as working on my divine potential. You get to define what kundalini is or is not by your own experience.

Just as in yoga you need to experience the pose vs. read about it or watching it being practiced, you need to define for yourself what you believe.  This holds true not just for kundalini energy, but for all lessons in life—a sentiment expressed in the opening section by Yogamint CEO, Hari Bhajan.  Find out through your own experience.  It’s easy to believe what “they” say.  What do you say?  Many times I remind my readers to take what resonates with them and discard the rest.  Remember this implies you’re open to taking it all in with an open mind first.

“Almost everyone who does yoga will tell you that their “energy” feels different after they’ve practiced. This is no doubt one of the main reasons why we practice: to change our experience of how energy moves in the body. We want more energy; smoother, more even energy; or energy that is quieter and less agitated.” http://www.yogajournal.com/basics/819?print=1

In our bodies, the kundalini energy resides in the spine—the same place your chakra energy centers are.  See my opening notes at the beginning of this Chakrascope section:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.

Just as acupressure or acupuncture releases blocks in your energetic “subtle” body, yoga releases blocks along the nadis—or delivery system—in the body.  Many of my students have heard me talk about hip openers releasing the stored emotions in the body.  Emotional releases in bodywork are common occurrences for this same reason.  I had one the first time I tried Qigong a few years before I started practicing yoga.  It happened just as I was tapping the energy up and down my legs—immediate, unexplained tears.  It wasn’t even that far into the program.  It both amazed and intrigued me.

“Hip openers particularly have a knack for reaching into the depths of our emotional patterns. Occasionally in yoga teacher training programs and environments where it is safe to let go, yogis exploring the deeper dimensions of themselves may have episodes of uncontrollable crying. This is one way the body sheds trauma. People who have had this experience say the tears are not attached to a particular event or thought. The nervous system calibrates, and feelings of deep-seated peace immediately follow. Yoga is the best therapist you will ever have.”  http://www.michellemyhre.com/2010/10/yoga-hip-openers-emotional-release.html

“Yoga can help many symptoms of depression and bipolar disorder, including mood swings, fear, anxiety, tension, and lethargy. One way yoga helps is to release energetic blockages that are called granthis in Sanskrit. These are “knots” that form at the navel region, the seat of personal power; the heart center, the seat of the emotional body, and the throat, the seat of self-expression.

When we release these blockages, our physical and emotional layers open and energy flows freely. This energy, called prana, is the essential life-force of all beings. When prana flows freely through the body, we feel vital and healthy; we reconnect with others and become a part of the world.” http://www.beliefnet.com/Health/Emotional-Health/Bipolar/Yoga-for-Emotional-Balance.aspx

So to recap, yoga releases blocks along the nadis—or delivery system—in the body. There are three main nadis: The Ida, the Pingala, and the Sushumna nadi.  “Nadi” means “movement”.  They operate as a delivery system for the chakras and transport subtle energies throughout the body.  They are often compared to the Chinese meridian system since both distribute energy and interact with the chakras.  Basically the process involves using breath to guide energy through the Ida and the Pingala to the base of the spine. To recap the Beliefnet.com article above, when prana, or energy, moves freely through the body, we feel vital and healthy; we reconnect with others and become a part of the world.”

Perhaps it’s the use of Sanskrit that evokes fear or resistance among some.  Perhaps it’s the “serpents” used to describe “kundalini”.  Remember that both the snake and the butterfly represent transformation. The actual transformation occurs within you.  It’s not the snake or the butterfly within you! So no worries!  “Ida, Pingala, and Sushumna nadi?”—What the heck?  Want a visual?  Take a closer look at your local MD’s lapel. The most common illustration of the nadis is the familiar symbol of the medical practice—the caduceus.  It shows the Sushumna (or nadi central, in the spine) depicted as a straight wand with two snakes (the Ida and the Pingala) coiled around it. (Notice how the unfamiliar description of it immediately makes you, perhaps, uncomfortable when a second ago it was just the familiar medicine practice symbol?)  The Ida and the Pingala meet at nose level, the Ida from the left and the Pingala from the right.  They cross the Sushumna four times intersecting with and surrounding the chakras while activating them.  This allows for an upward path for the activated kundalini.  The breath is vital in this process.

For more details on this process and the nadis as well as an in-depth study on chakras and subtle energy, local and internationally known author, Cyndi Dale, has another excellent book called “The Subtle Body.  An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy”.  (The Subtle Body has garnered over 75 five-star reviews on Amazon.com and continually sells in the 1,000 place, leading millions of books. It has also won four internationally recognized Publisher?s Awards.)

There are several books, DVDs, and classes offering Kundalini Yoga.  I’ve mentioned only a few in this newsletter.  “The practice of Kundalini Yoga balances the glandular system, strengthens the nervous system and enables us to harness the energy of the mind and the emotions, so we can be in control of ourselves, rather than being controlled by our thoughts and feelings…It is a precious gem of sacred knowledge and power.  And you don’t have to be a pretzel. For the physical exercises, if you can breathe, and just lean in the right direction, you’ll be benefitted.”  A Simple Guide to the Yoga of Awareness, Kundalini Yoga, The Flow of Eternal Power, by Shakti Parwha Kaur Khalsa as taught by Yogi Bhajan, Ph.D.

“Kundalini yoga is considered the most comprehensive system of yoga at is combines meditation, prayer, asana (physical postures), and pranayama (breathing exercises)…The Upanishads, the sacred scriptures of Hinduism that date back to the fifth century B.C., provided a written description of Kundalini, although the oral tradition dates back even further. For thousands of years, this sacred science and technology was veiled in secrecy, passed along in the oral tradition from master to chosen disciple.

Kundalini Yoga was never taught publicly until Yogi Bhajan, Ph. D. challenged the age-old tradition of secrecy. In his compassionate wisdom, Yogi Bhajan brought Kundalini Yoga to the United States in 1969. Since then, it has spread all over the world. He wrote, I am sharing these teachings to create a science of the total self…It is the birthright of every human being to be healthy, happy and holy.” http://www.awarenesscenteryoga.org/about.html

Ready to be healthy, happy, and holy?  Explore some of the meditations, Kriyas, recipes, and songs on Yogamint.com for a start.  Here’s one of my favorite songs and I found it at Yogamint.com A_Light_Shining.  It is my wish for you.  It will mesmerize you:

“Something Beautiful”

May the Grace of God be always in your heart

May you know the truth inside you from the start

May you find the strength to know that you are a

Part of something beautiful…

And I thought that I saw, a light Shine, I thought that I saw a light shine,

Yes I thought, that I saw, a light Shine; I think I see a light shine,

now…

May the Grace of God be always in your heart

May you know the truth inside you from the start

May you find the strength to know that you are a

Part of something beautiful…

(Now that’s some good energy.)

Breathwork:  Breath of Fire

“Breath of Fire uses deep, rapid breath cycles to warm your body and increase your energy.  Traditionally the Breath of Fire is not a pranayama technique but rather a kriya, or cleansing, practice.  Many of the toxins in your body are released during your exhale, which is your focus here.

Assume the Mountain Pose, or sit comfortably in a cross-legged position.  Begin inhaling through your nose, keeping your mouth closed.  Exhale half the air out of your lungs to a point somewhere between exhale and Inhale.  Your exhale should be quick and sharp, contracting your abdominal muscles. In this exercise, exhalations are short, vigorous, and active; inhalations are light and passive.  Continue this rhythmic pattern for 20 to 25 breaths.  Repeat two to five rounds, finishing with a deep Three-part breath (filling up first the bottom of your lungs, then the middle chest area, then the upper chest and exhaling in reverse order.)

Restrictions: 

  • Avoid hyperventilating by focusing on strong, quick exhalations.
  • Check for dizziness (if dizzy, return to relaxation breathing).
  • If you have a heart or blood pressure condition, avoid this technique.

Effects

  • Energizes and activates the right side of your pranic system.
  • Stimulates your nervous system.
  • Cleanses your respiratory system.

Source:  Beth Shaw’s YOGAFIT, The program for a more powerful, flexible, and defined physique.

Fire In Your Belly

Detox with Radish and Breathing

Feeling down? You may be suffering from toxins in your blood. Eating a diet full of meat, sugar and processed foods pollutes your blood, as do pharmaceuticals, alcohol and environmental toxins. When your blood is toxic, it contributes to fatigue, depression, allergies and decreased immune function. When you want some fun in the sun, any of these conditions are unacceptable. Two simple fixes can clear out your blood and fire you up—eating radishes and doing Breath of Fire!

Breath of Fire–a powerful breathing technique–rapidly detoxifies your blood, releasing toxins from the lungs, mucus linings, blood vessels and other cells, bringing about a boost in the immune system and increasing oxygen delivery to the brain. Sit quietly with your eyes 9/10th closed and roll your gaze up to the point between your eyebrows. First, to understand Breath of Fire, open your mouth and pant like a dog. That’s what it sounds and feels like! Now, close your mouth and breathe deeply and rapidly through your nose—this is called “Breath of Fire.” Power the breath from the navel point, not the upper chest. Continue breathing through the nose, while pumping the navel, for up to three minutes.

Now…bring on the radishes. You may want to continue your blood cleansing regimen by eating some peppery radishes! Radishes stimulate the liver to expel toxins and improve elimination; they also do wonders for your kidneys, helping them to flush more efficiently. Radishes provide more oxygen to red blood cells, making you cleaner and stronger from the inside out.

The next time you feel drained and lifeless, try Breath of Fire, throw some radishes into your diet, and you’ll be back to sun worshipping and Sun Salutations in no time!

Ramdesh Kaur
Kundalini Yoga Teacher and Writer
www.noordinarylight.blogspot.com
www.spiritvoyage.com/blog
Recommended Reading: Praana Praanee Praanayam Exploring the Breath Technology of Kundalini Yoga As Taught By Yogi Bhajan and Foods for Health and Healing by Yogi Bhajan, Ph.D

Source:  http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3156960/Fire_In_Your_Belly?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2602394&ObjectID=3156960&ObjectType=35

Affirmations:  

I offer a song this month as your affirmation (from Yogamint’s website, of course!):

  • “Long Time Sun” takes its lyrics from Yogi Bhajan’s “benediction” used at the end of every Kundalini practice. Even if you don’t practice yoga, it’s nice to just say this little song for yourself and the ones you love every day:May the long time sun shine upon you
    All love surround you
    And the pure light within you guide your way on

Sources: Long_Time_Sun

Diet:

Try these tips, recipes, remedies to increase your energy, kundalini or otherwise.

http://www.yogamint.com/mints/eat

Aromatherapy:

Here’s a book I found on Yogamint.com:

The Fragrant Mind: Aromatherapy for Personality, Mind, Mood and Emotion by Valerie Ann Worwood.

As well as an article on using aromatherapy with yoga:

Attune to Intimacy

Heal Your Second Chakra

Your second chakra is home to your most intimate feelings and thoughts. Located between the sacrum and reproductive organs, this energy center supports your ability to express feelings of intimacy, self-love, passion and the physical aspect of sensual expression. Ruled by water, this chakra is most closely attuned with your emotions and also guides reproduction, enthusiasm and creativity of the soul.

While your second chakra is closely related to the throat chakra and expression, on an emotional level it deeply connects to your heart chakra. When you feel heartbreak, particularly with a loved one, you may tend to withdraw your intimacy. One of my favorite poses to balance the sacral chakra is Supta Baddha Konasana (reclined bound angle pose or Goddess Pose). This pose activates the sacrum, while opening the heart to expansion and forgiveness.

A wonderful way to balance your second chakra is to use some aromatherapy with Goddess Pose. Set out a clear glass bowl of water and add a few drops of the following essential oils: neroli for enthusiasm and intimacy, clary sage for emotional expression and sandalwood for sensual expression. Light a few candles and set them around the bowl to create a dance of light through the water.

Sitting upright on the floor with an elevated bolster or sturdy pillow behind you, lean back, bend your knees and relax them down to each side while bringing the soles of your feet together. You should feel a gentle stretch in the groin and hip area. If there is too much of a stretch, put a folded blanket under each knee. Lay your arms at your sides, palms up.

As you relax, take a deep breath, engaging your diaphragm. Open your heart and expand your breath into your shoulders. As you exhale, relax your face and shoulders as you pull your feet a little closer into your groin. Continue breathing deeply as you imagine water flowing through your body, bathing you in the divine ability to express and protect your feelings. Repeat the following: “I love all aspects of myself. I delight in the creation of all that is in my life.” Let the goddess in you be healed and uplifted!

http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3890371/Attune_to_Intimacy

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the chakras: 

Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Gem therapy book recommended on Yogamint:  This is my all-time favorite gem book!

Love is in the Earth: A Kaleidoscope of Crystals – The Reference Book Describing the Metaphysical Properties of the Mineral Kingdom, by Melody.

 

Some Articles on gems found on Yogamint—click on the links to get the free PDF download information with each article:

The Healer’s Stone

Emeralds for Compassion

Emeralds are a symbol of love and good fortune. It’s said that if a man and woman present each other with an emerald stone their love grows over time and becomes permanent. Emeralds invoke the vibration of Kwan Yin, The Goddess of Compassion, which is why many healers are naturally drawn to this powerful stone.

Emeralds are known as The Healer’s Stone, because they give the healer inspiration and wisdom from the mental plane, and open the heart to give love, compassion and wisdom to others. Emeralds are beneficial in a personal meditative practice, as well as for healing. Placing an emerald on the heart while meditating can help restore the heart to balance, lift depression and help with insomnia. Doing this as a regular practice has a penetrating effect on the heart chakra (located in the center of your chest), perhaps because it access desires that are held deep within.”

http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3736203/The_Healer%27s_Stone?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2607572&ObjectID=3736203&ObjectType=35

Royal Diamonds

Gems of Purity and Light

Since ancient times, diamonds were believed to exert favorable influence on the owner, providing strength, courage and invincibility. It was the talisman of Julius Caesar, Louis IV and Napoleon. Queens, princesses, princes and Maharajahs have adorned themselves with diamonds. Diamonds represent a highly-prized symbol of status, luxury and purity in today’s world. Couples often choose diamonds as the symbol for eternal love and commitment in marriage.

The white light of the diamond is the perfect balance of all colors, in which all the components work together to produce energy in its purest state, bringing clarity, creativity and ingenuity. A diamond allows the soul light to shine out, aiding your spiritual evolution and reminding you of your soul’s aspirations. Diamonds act like an amplifier, refracting the entire light spectrum. If the wearer has good intentions they amplify goodness; if combined with another gemstone or crystal they will amplify the energy of that gemstone or crystal.

On a physical level, diamonds purify all the body’s systems, rebalancing the metabolism, building up stamina, strength, treating allergies and chronic conditions. (For best results, have the diamond set so it touches the skin.) Wearing diamonds offers the same benefits as wearing white. Yogi Bhajan said, “Wearing white clothing triples one’s aura and widens it up to 27 feet. White clothing makes you look divine…it is good for your psyche, for your energy, and for your nervous system. Your way of dressing should be saintly and make you glow with grace.” So wear some white diamonds today!

http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3865463/Royal_Diamonds?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2607651&ObjectID=3865463&ObjectType=35

The Raj Stone

Rubies for Health & Abundance

It’s an old adage that as long as you have a bit of ruby, wealth will never leave you. When building the Taj Mahal for his beloved wife, the Fifth Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan had rubies inlaid in the marble of this magnificent palace. Rubies have been known throughout the ages as the stone of nobility and are said to bestow fame, virtue, vigor, personal warmth, and the power to command.

How does it work? Rubies balance the first and fourth chakras, located at the anus and heart respectively. When not aligned, the first chakra manifests issues relating to security and identity. Likewise, an unbalanced fourth chakra can inspire feelings of shyness, loneliness or jealousy. These two together are a potent cocktail, making for emotional aggression, a quick temper and sometimes leading to health susceptibilities such as diarrhea, constipation, asthma and bronchitis or high blood pressure. If you have Mars in your astrological chart (for example, if you were born on a Tuesday), it is particularly helpful to consider rubies, since you are especially susceptible to these issues.

Conversely, rubies help balance these areas of potential weakness. By restoring the balance of the first chakra, they create a foundation for the sense of your own Raj (regal) identity. From this platform, rubies help manifest vitality in the physical body, grounding it and bringing peace, love, and contentment through the fourth chakra.

http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_1964346/The_Raj_Stone?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2607572&ObjectID=1964346&ObjectType=35

Heaven-Sent Stone

Regal Blue Sapphire

It’s believed that Moses was given the Ten Commandments on a plate made out of sapphire, which makes this gemstone one of the most sanctified of all semi-precious and precious stones. Sapphires are revered as divine gemstones, highly desired by royalty and aristocracy as well as by high priests. The British Crown glitters with large blue sapphires, symbols of a pure and wise reign. They help to bring wealth, name and fame to the wearer.

Blue sapphires are associated with the throat chakra. When this chakra is out of balance you may feel emotional, shy or disempowered. On the physical level you might experience sore throats, TMJ or have imbalanced thyroid function, which can affect your metabolism and weight.

Blue sapphires help to open and heal the thyroid and the throat chakra, assisting in communication, expressing your truth and beliefs. This gemstone supports you to stay on the spiritual path, releasing blockages and providing strength.

http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3909126/Heaven-Sent_Stone?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2607572&ObjectID=3909126&ObjectType=35

The Eastern Diamond

The Green Energy of Jade

An old Chinese legend tells of an Ancient King who, falling deathly ill, was cured by wearing a jade stone. Many believe that jade transfers its virtues into the body. Long considered the health, wealth and longevity stone, jade is perhaps the most revered stone in the East. For the Chinese in particular, jade is thought of as “the Quintessence of Heaven and Earth,” and admiration for this stone surpasses even diamonds because of the healing properties and protective energy it instills.

Jade works by balancing the heart chakra, located at the center of the chest. If this chakra is out of balance, it essentially means you are out of touch with your heart. Emotional outbursts occur since the imbalance amplifies moodiness or depression. Over time this can lead to an obsessive or overly critical outlook and manifest some physical disorders like high blood pressure, heart disease or asthma.

Jade balances the heart chakra by tuning into its “green energy,” as the ancient yogis say. Green is the color of the light that surrounds this chakra and jade helps activate it, opening up the potential for compassion, unconditional love, joy and humility. It calms the nervous system and soothes the mind, bringing with it security, tranquility and peaceful energy.

http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_2188710/The_Eastern_Diamond?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2607651&ObjectID=2188710&ObjectType=35

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating Kundalini

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.

This month’s yoga pose section highlighted Kriyas for energetic benefits.  Find other kriyas as well as yoga moves such as
Yoga for the jet set –Fitness while flying,
http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3883485/Yoga_for_the_Jet_Set  or

Spread Your Wings—Tai Chi Workout Wisdom, http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3858524/Spread_Your_Wings

at Yogamint.com:  http://www.yogamint.com/mints/move or use their handy “Search” box to look up a favorite subject of your choice.

 

27
June

You determine your boundaries. You determine what to get rid of in your life. That is the power of the solar plexus chakra!

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on You determine your boundaries. You determine what to get rid of in your life. That is the power of the solar plexus chakra! Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

We’ve been talking about applying discipline to our lives, analyzing where our resistances come from and deciding if they’re habits we want to keep or kick to the curb.  That smacks of willpower doesn’t it?  We hold our power in our solar plexus chakra!  You get to determine what is important and meaningful in your life.  You determine your boundaries.  You determine what to get rid of in your life.  That is the power of the solar plexus chakra!  Would you like to have more of that?

I often remind my students to keep their ribs in as they hold the various poses reminding them the solar plexus area is where they hold their power.  If you let your ribs pop out you let your power spill out.  Keep your ribs in and your power stays within you.  Just practicing that in mountain pose you can feel a difference in the energy of your body.

The element of this chakra is the fire element.  Fire burns away what you don’t want.  Fire makes way for the new in your life.  The theme for this month continues!  Make way for those new habits you are forming!  Expand your horizons to facilitate the change you are looking for!  You have the power within for the growth you desire.  You just need to use it!  That’s solar plexus chakra energy at work.

Fire can evoke feelings of fear—Fear of the unknown when fire comes into your life and burns away the old.  Remember my sentiment in the opening—all change is good!  It means you are alive!  Use the power of your will to achieve the results you want.  Fear of the unknown?  What do you want?  Make it happen.  No more fear because you decide what you create in your life so no more “unknown”.  No more fear of failure.  Decide that you are the source of your reality.  And why wouldn’t you be?  Expect to succeed because you’ve decided that you won’t give up.  That’s willpower.  That’s solar plexus chakra power!  As Dale Carnegie said earlier, First ask yourself: What is the worst that can happen? Then prepare to accept it. Then proceed to improve on the worst.” ~ Dale Carnegie. 

The solar plexus chakra helps us create our world.  It helps us decide what’s important and meaningful.  This is why I suggested in the opening section the importance of analyzing your habits and your resistance to situations so that you know exactly why you have them.  If you don’t know why you are resistant or afraid or doing something out of habit, you’ve lost your power.  Figuring out why you label something “fear” may actually weaken that fear.  You may find that you’ve falsely identified something as fear.  The solar plexus chakra controls the ability to identify a problem and find the solution to it through your total understanding of it. If you don’t understand your habits, your personality traits, you lose that ability.  Your solar plexus chakra weakens.

How cool would it be to regain your power over some habitual fears?  That’s solar plexus energy at work.

Once you get to know why you do the things you do when you do them, you can then use your willpower to work with your personality traits.  I tend to be a worrier.  I know like I know like I know there is a habitual response involved here.  One of my personal affirmations is “The idea that something is wrong is easily lifted from me” because I have this tendency to always think there is something wrong!  I’ve been using that affirmation whenever I start up with the worrying.  I think about whatever it is I’ve decided I should fester upon that moment, and I say “the idea that something is wrong is easily lifted from me”.

You immediately know when you aren’t feeling optimistic.  Your body is like a meter telling you; no that’s not the right direction; no—too far in the other direction.  Ahh!  Now you’re cooking with gas! Use your internal meter to alert you to when you just took a turn in the wrong direction.  Use your willpower.  Solar plexus energy is the power to do something.  Use your solar plexus chakra!

Getting to know yourself is the realm of the solar plexus chakra.  “It is not possible to define who you are unless you can also identify who and what you are not.  When you know who you are, you can start to understand your place in the world.”  Healing with Crystals and Chakra Energies, Sue and Simon Lilly.  Developing your sense of your own self lets you shine your light brightly—finally!  Don’t you want more of that?  Determine that you are the source of your manifestations.  Determine that you are the cause of your reality.  How do you do that?—by constantly catching yourself being small.  At first your baby steps will start with noticing that you’ve caught yourself.  That’s a huge start!  We’ve all heard that defining the problem is more than half of solving the problem.  So pat yourself on the back for noticing.  The gift of yoga (and the self-study Niyama mentioned in the opening section) is that it teaches you to be the observer.  Observe first, and then take action with what you’ve observed.  All in due time—we are in no hurry to get to know the self.  It lasts your whole lifetime and isn’t that great?

Getting to know yourself will also help you find out where your talents and gifts lie so that you develop a sense of your own person.  Letting your “real self” out means you are not limiting yourself.  Know that you are worthy of the life you want. As you develop a sense of who you are, your level of inner joy increases.  Inner joy creates inner healing—physically, emotionally, and spiritually.  Let you define who you are, not the outer world.  Choose what and who you are.  “Be who you are.  Otherwise you will miss your life.” ~ Buddha.

As mentioned in the opening section, you never really know what you are capable of unless you place yourself in challenging situations.  Overcome your fear to try new things.  Overcome your habit to avoid change.  That’s using your solar plexus power.

Laughter helps the energy in the solar plexus chakra to be responsive and to flow freely—another continuing theme of trying comic relief to move through the energy of resistance. So as you work your solar plexus chakra remember not to take yourself too seriously!  Laugh more to keep your solar plexus chakra healthy!  Enjoy!  http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3187052/Cosmic_Resonance?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2488618&ObjectID=3187052&ObjectType=35 .

Breathwork and Visualization: 

Visualizing the Sun

“Use this visualization exercise to invite warmth and joy into your life.  This is a good exercise to do if you have feelings of unease or fear that you want to dispel.  Using the positive aspects and strength of the sun you will create a feeling of security and contentment.

1.      Sit or lie down comfortably.  Wrap a blanket around you if the day is cool.  Breathe in, and as you breathe out, allow yourself to relax.  Imagine this sphere of golden light beginning to form between your navel and the bottom of your ribcage.  Imagine this sphere is also giving off a comfortable warmth.  Allow the sphere to grow until it enfolds the whole of your body.

2.      Stay still for a few minutes, slowing the light and warmth to fill every part of your body. Imagine the sphere shrinking back until it is the size of a tennis ball.  Allow the small sphere to sink into your abdomen, before shrinking down to the size of a pea.  Let the imagery dissolve.  Bring your attention back to everyday awareness.”

Source:  Healing with Crystals and Chakra Energies by Sue and Simon Lilly.

Affirmations
:  

  • The idea that something is wrong is easily lifted from me
  • I embrace the habit of living large in everything I do, knowing that I am helping Spirit to more fully express Itself as me.
  • I decide what is important and meaningful
  • I am the cause of this reflection
  • I am in control of what I see
  • My world is a reflection of what is inside of me
  • I create my reality
  • I am willing to let “that” belief go
  • I am challenging a thought
  • I deserve my good
  • I have the power to cause the results I desire
  • I am worth my weight in gold
  • I am worthy of the life I say I want
  • I am worthy of the best
  • I am confident in my ability to make my life work
  • I am confident in the goodness of life itself to see me through.
  • I accept the power of my being to produce health, love and joy into my life
  • I choose the power of life
  • I choose health, healing, and happiness
  • I choose the best for myself
  • The idea that something is wrong is easily lifted from me

Sources: 

Science of Mind, July issue

Universal Laws of Conscious Creation Deck, by Solara, Da Ponte and Chapman

The Book of Chakras, Ambika Wauters.

Diet and the Solar Plexus Chakra:  Spices build your inner fire—black pepper, cayenne, cloves, and ginger.  Seeds cool excess fire—fennel, anise, cumin, flax seed, and sunflower seeds. Other foods include complex carbohydrates to aid in digestion:  rice, oats, millet, pasta, bread, muesli.

Aromatherapy and the Solar Plexus Chakra:  Clary sage, juniper, geranium (my absolute favorite!), bergamot, chamomile, peppermint, among others.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Solar Plexus Chakra:  Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Solar Plexus Chakra gems are:

Topaz, amber, yellow tourmaline, yellow citrine, aventurine quartz, among others.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Solar Plexus Chakra

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.  This month’s highlighted pose, Side-reclining lift, stimulates solar plexus chakra.  Other solar plexus chakra poses include all types of twists since this chakra influences the digestive organs, camel pose, revolved triangle pose, among others.

 

27
May

Both physically and energetically, working with your root chakra grounds you and builds inner strength—strength for YOUR hero’s journey.

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Both physically and energetically, working with your root chakra grounds you and builds inner strength—strength for YOUR hero’s journey. Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

My opening quote talked about being on a “hero’s journey” in life and, in particular, during my most recent eight month training.  So what “hero’s journey” are you on?  As mentioned in the quote from above, “Sometimes, the hero’s journey involves learning to believe in ourselves and our ability to play our part. We may even need to grow into and accept our ability to lead others, overcoming guilt or confusion.”  Any journey begins with a single step.  You can always handle the one step, can’t you?  It’s when we try to make the whole journey in our mind that we start to panic. That first step requires firm contact with the earth element—feet firmly planted on the ground.  Earth is the element of the root chakra.

I often refer to your feet as the foundation of the particular yoga pose you’re in.  When you address your foot issues—supination, pronation, bunions, ankle stability, etc., you address issues further up in your body.  Suddenly your hip and back pains are gone all because you worked on your foot pronation, or on creating space between the toes.  Keeping your foundation healthy keeps the whole body healthy.  Such is the story of the root chakra.  If you keep this chakra balanced and strong, it will serve as the foundation of stability for the rest of the chakras up the ladder. The Sanskrit word for the root chakra is Muladhara which means root support—how appropriate.

Remember my comparison of the chakra system to Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs?  You need food and shelter before you can consider being enlightened.  First things first, right?  So start with maintaining the body vehicle you are in.  Eat nutritiously, get plenty of rest, get the right doctor check-ups, etc.  Enough said.  I talked about Ayurveda in last month’s newsletter. Eating for your Ayurvedic body type will help you feel better.   http://www.kmtv.com/story/14665511/eating-for-your-body-type-helps-women-feel-better-and-lose-weight.
http://www.yogajournal.com/health/54

I immediately consider the “root chakra” when I’m feeling insecure, afraid, or anxious—as I did many times throughout the past eight months of training. The root chakra is our base chakra and is located at the base of the spine.

While researching the chakra sections for this article, I realize that the characteristics many of us might think come with a strong root/base chakra are also attributes of other chakras.  In The Complete Guide to Chakra Healing—Energy medicine for Mind, Body, and Spirit, by Philip Permutt, I found the following for unbalanced chakras describing chakras two through seven: lack of confidence, unbalanced emotions, lack of concentration, emotional confusion, feelings of unease, nervousness, and anxiety, feelings of negativity, and nervous system disorders.

I believe if we had a strong root/base chakra, many of the imbalances in the subsequent chakras up the ladder wouldn’t make themselves known.  As already mentioned, the root chakra forms the foundation for the other chakras up the ladder.

So it’s this chakra I’ve chosen to highlight this month.  Full disclosure here:  I’ve been told by more than one chakra reader that my root chakra needs some tender loving care.  Jody Tschida, a Certified Healing Touch Practitioner and a Reiki Master Teacher, told me during a chakra reading that I need to spend as much if not more time on building the energy in my root chakra as I do the higher centers.  (http://www.lighttouchspiritualhealing.com/).

How many of us feel like the childhood “Weeble™” toy?   Yes, “Weebles wobble but they don’t fall down™”….but they wobble by definition.  That’s lack of root chakra energy.  That’s lack of grounding. I’m really done with being a Weeble.  How about you?  (See the “Healthy News” section for studies showing how improved balance decreases anxiety.  Something we already figured out with a strong root chakra.)

So what can you do to work with strengthening your foundation?  I already alluded to your feet.  Just giving yourself a basic foot massage as you slather lotion or essential oils on your feet after your daily shower will go a long way toward strengthening your grounding points—your plantar chakra’s on the sole of each foot.  These are your primary grounding points and the connection between your energy and the earth’s energy.  Google™ “foot massage” and you’ll find several videos if you’re looking for instruction.  Most of us can “wing” a good food massage, though, can’t we?

The feet contain nerve endings for the entire body.  If the basic foot massage interests you, try looking into reflexology—a form of bodywork focusing primarily on the feet:

When you engage “Pada Bandha” (“Pada” means “foot” in Sanskrit, “Bandha” means lock”) in mountain pose, you are pulling the energy from the earth up into your body.  One of my favorite cues in class is to “spread the toes, lift them wide, and plop them down”.  Then feel the arches cup the mat and pull the energy from foot lock up into your body, connecting that energy to “root lock” (Mula Bandha) and “belly lock” (Uddiyana Bandha), and sending it all the way up and out through the crown of the head. Feel how this lights up the whole body along the way—and I literally mean both the physical body and the energy body.  You can engage Pada Bandha any time you’re barefoot—so do it often and feel the extra earth connection strengthening your foundation and strengthening your root chakra.

It goes without saying, but I’ll say it any way, that Root Lock is another staple for strengthening your Root chakra.  For that matter, all the “locks” or “Bandhas” are helpful.  I’ve often used the analogy of a Kegel Move—where the pelvic floor comes up and in—as the description of root lock. Others say it’s like stopping the flow of urine mid-stream.  Since guys aren’t used to Kegel moves, I’ve added the sensation of going into a cold pool or bath.

Hard core yogis know this isn’t the full story—root lock involves the front part of the perineum and the pelvic diaphragm.  It does not include the muscles of the anus or rectum.  Do you see why I don’t always go into the full description?  I was once told by another wonderful YogaFit® instructor, Stephanie Adams, that if you considered the base of the pelvic floor like a diamond, it’s the front half of the diamond (front part of your pelvic floor) that you are pulling in and up.  You want to keep the back half of the diamond (back part of your pelvic floor) out of it.

I’ve described the “belly lock” or Uddiyana Bandha as a “zipping up” of the abdominal area.  We are aiming for the transverse abdominals—the ones your hands would lay over if your hands were in your front pockets—just slightly below the navel.  Holding root and belly lock at a low level of about two on a scale of ten is not only a good yoga practice, it’s a safe way to approach movement in life, in my opinion.  Think about lifting something heavy, or leaning from your chair to pick something off the floor.  Now think of how much safer it would be to do that with the two locks I just described.

Here’s a fun exercise for those that have been doing root lock long enough to play with this experiment:  Grab a partner (don’t panic!) and one of you stand in mountain pose (feet hip distance apart) while you connect one hand’s index finger to the thumb tip of the same hand.  Hold this mountain pose without root lock (I often call it root lift).  Your partner will try to pull the index finger away from the thumb.  Your job is to not let your partner do it.  Now, engage what you know to be root lock and have your partner try to pull your fingers away from each other.  Big difference, isn’t it?  This highlights just how much strength root lock gives your whole body!  Now can you see why holding root lock increases the safety of all the poses, and why I suggest making it a habit to engage root lock throughout your day? A strong root lock builds a strong root chakra.  (The above exercise came to me compliments of YogaEarth’s free weekly videos.  I tried in vain to find the video to include here!  http://www.yogaearth.com/terraflow/free-yoga-videos-weekly-sign-up-for-terraflow/ )

Working with the earth element will also strengthen your connection to Mother Earth and strengthens your root chakra.  This is a great time of year to reconnect.  Plant flowers in your yard, start a window box garden out your apartment window, or create an herb garden in clay pots on your deck.

I’ve highlighted container gardens in past newsletters, but I have a confession: Up until recently, I had yet to get actively involved myself.  For awhile I shied away from yard work because my parents were over the top into it, and I think I considered it “their realm”.  Then, after I was married, I used the excuse that my husband loves to do yard work so I didn’t want to take that away from him.  Then we took a chakra workshop with TeriLeigh and she also reminded me that my root chakra needed strengthening while Ed’s (my husband) was pretty darn stable—which is probably part of the attraction. She suggested getting my hands into the Earth.  So when it came time to plant the flowers around our house, Ed suggested I help.  He was profusely grateful for the help, which led me to believe I should have been helping all along.  He actually enjoyed having assistance–duh. “Thump on the head” to myself for waiting so long.  Here’s some Web-sites for creating your own personal container garden:
http://erthturf.com/AllAboutContainerGardening.html

http://www.veggiegardener.com/create-a-container-herb-garden/

http://www.ehow.com/how_5051639_build-tilting-clay-pot-garden.html

http://www.flowerpotheaven.com/deck-rail-planters.htm

While we’re at it, hiking in nature is a great way to connect with the Earth Element.  Just in time for June 21st—fee free entrance day into National Parks!  http://usparks.about.com/b/2011/05/22/june-21-fee-free-entrance-in-national-parks.htm.

Food for the journey, feet securely on the ground, a deep connection to Mother Earth’s bounty, inner strength—that’s a strong root chakra. Both physically and energetically, working with your root chakra grounds you and builds inner strength—strength for YOUR hero’s journey.  Here’s to the journey, begin it now.

Breathwork and Visualization:

My November 2010 newsletter highlighted one of my favorite grounding meditations repeated here for ease of reference. An Earth Element meditation follows:

Grounding breath

Take a deep inhale with eyes closed visualizing all your scattered energies coming back to you at center, like you’re a magnet attracting back to you what was yours to begin with, and as you exhale, send your breath down your feet into the ground down into the earth like roots of a tree.

Even picture the dirt pushing away from those roots as your breath energy goes down into the Earth. Do this with a few breaths going as deep into the earth as you can, and stay there as long as you need to. If you’re new to visualizing, just know it gets easier with practice.  Sometimes I like to hold a natural river stone in the palms of my cupped hands.  Natural river stones are especially grounding.

Earth Meditation

As mentioned, the element associated with the root chakra is the earth element.  “In the yogic tradition, vibhuti, holy ash, is placed on the forehead to remind wearers that the body will return to this element”—similar to the ashes placed on your forehead on Ash Wednesday in the Catholic faith—and the Priest says the prayer:  You are dust and to dust you will return. Meditating on the Earth element will increase your groundedness and stability.

1.      Kneel in front of your altar (see the highlighted card “Creating Sacred Space” below for suggestions, or the link from the opening section on creating sacred space:  http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_1964078/Altar_Your_Space) with your knees and feet together, buttocks resting on your heels, and palms on your thighs.  If you prefer, you can sit cross-legged, or on a chair with your bare feet flat on the ground.

2.      Now place the backs of your hands on your knees or thighs and make Earth Mudra by joining your ring fingers with their respective thumbs.

3.      Close your eyes and become aware of the effects of gravity on your body.  Begin to experience a pleasant heaviness that becomes a feeling of stability and stillness.  Then think about the qualities of the element earth.  Feel as if you are rooting yourself firmly, while drawing up stability and strength from the ground beneath you.

4.      Mentally repeat an affirmation, such as:

  • My life is firm and grounded.
  • My patience is infinite.
  • I stand up for what I believe in.
  • I have my feet planted firmly on the ground.
  • My path in life reveals itself to me.
  • I am exactly where I need to be.
  • I am nurtured by the energy of the earth.

5.      Spend at least 30 minutes on the practice, then stretch your legs.

Affirmations:

  • My life is firm and grounded.
  • My patience is infinite.
  • I stand up for what I believe in.
  • I have my feet planted firmly on the ground.
  • My path in life reveals itself to me.
  • I am exactly where I need to be.
  • I am nurtured by the energy of the earth.
  • I am safe and secure at all times
  • I love my feet.  They show me the way.
  • I love my legs.  They give me support.
  • I know that I belong.  I know that I am safe.
  • I trust life supports me in fulfilling my purpose.
  • I have a right to be me just exactly as I am.
  • I trust in the process of my life to unfold for my highest good and greatest joy.
  • I am creating a healthy foundation on which creativity can flourish.

Sources: Chakra Meditation—Discover Energy, Creativity, Focus, Love, Communication, Wisdom, and Spirit by Swami Saradananda.
http://www.1lovespirit.com/affirmations-chakras.html

Diet and the Root Chakra: I already mentioned eating for your body type (Ayurveda) in the Chakrascope article above to increase health and well-being. Eating root vegetables like beets, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, turnips, yams, etc., is also very grounding. Beans, legumes, nuts, tofu and soy products are also grounding “comfort foods”,  as are seeds like pine nuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds.

Aromatherapy and the Root Chakra: The sense of smell is associated with the Root Chakra. Scents can be very grounding. I’m sure you all have your favorite scent from childhood. So that may be a good place to start. Some possible grounding scents to try: Sandalwood, patchouli, pine, cedar, balsam fir or frankincense.  Not surprisingly, these are all tree scents.  I love to visualize roots coming out of your feet into the ground, like at tree, grounding you to Mother Earth.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Root Chakra: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Root  Chakra Gems: Red Jasper, Hematite, Black Obsidian, Smokey Quartz, Snowflake Obsidian, Red Calcite, Falcon’s Eye (also known as Red Tiger’s Eye), Zircon, Mookaite (this one is just too fun to say!), Black Banded Agate, Jet, Black Opal, Petrified Wood, among others.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Root Chakra:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.  In particular, the following are noted as good for activating the root chakra: Mountain pose, chair pose, forward bends, knees to chest pose, easy-seated pose or lotus pose, seated cat/cow pose, child’s pose, and final relaxation pose, among others.

 

 

 

 

27
April

Add the pink and gold vibrations/energies to empower the whole chakra system.

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Add the pink and gold vibrations/energies to empower the whole chakra system. Tagged with

 

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

I already dwelled a bit on chakras in the opening using the dream message, “Be with air, add water—physiological weather.”  I equated air with the heart chakra and water with the sacral chakra focus.  So those are the obvious choices for my Charkascope this month.

Every good thing in your life always begins with love and expands when love is added. Abundance cannot be obtained without love. When you do anything as a service out of love for others, your actions will always be abundant.

“Be with” or “focus on” doing things as a service to others with love, then release control by surrendering to the flow of life—allow life to deliver to you in its own natural time and way.  This will create/transform into the abundance you are looking for—be it financial, spiritual, or other.  How you define abundance for yourself will be what comes to you.  How you feel about abundance is your physiological weather.

Other interpretations got to the same end message.  For example, to “be with air”—to be present with what you are, what you already have inside.  This is your gift—the gift of your heart. You can’t follow someone else’s bliss.  If it isn’t what brings you joy, it will provide you less of the abundance you are looking for.  “Add water” became a call to relax your effort and flow like water to cool the heat and fire of wanting to control and do too much.

I was told once by Cyndi Dale, another well-known chakra energy expert, that in matters of my heart chakra, if I could figure out how to add pink and gold to the green color there, it would help.  She prefaced it with, “I know this may not make sense right now, but..”  This was said during a 15-minute break in a presentation at a class she was presenting and I was in a long line of those waiting to ask her a question.  So I didn’t push for more.  I didn’t want to abuse her time.  After all, I’d paid for a class presentation and not a one-on-one!  No, I didn’t schedule that one-on-one for various reasons, but I’ve dwelled on what she told me many times.

The other day, at the request of one of my yoga students who had just broken her ankle, I was researching what the body language of ankles, etc might mean.  I went to The Secret Language of your Body, by Inna Segal.  Among a vast array of emotions to work with, it also reviews working with the healing vibrations of color.  “Color healing is brilliant:  you can do it anywhere, anytime, and it often works instantly.  Color is also a vibration that you can actually feel in your hands, and different colors have different effects on the body.”

One of the colors recommended was pink.  As I read this color’s attributes, I remembered Cyndi Dale’s words to add more pink.  I knew I needed to “add more pink”.  Here are just a few of pink’s attributes I knew I needed.  How about you?

Brings Self-acceptance:
The desire for self-acceptance came to me in my dream message as “be with what is.  Be with the gifts inside.  Be with how you are.” remember?

Brings tranquility: Who doesn’t need this in today’s world?

Helps:

  • with the manifestation of dreamsCreating abundance was a theme brought out in my dream message as well.  If abundance isn’t a manifestation of dreams, I don’t know what is.
  • those who suffer from low self-esteemI think we all find it “easier to believe the bad stuff”, to quote Pretty Woman. Believing in our special gifts is always harder.
  • let go of old patternsI know when my wheels are spinning.  Don’t you?  Old patterns?  They’ve become constant companions.  I work on severing the ties with my writing, my yoga, and my prayers.
  • release fearI am in the midst of much change ever since I decided to step out of  the corporate world and into making yoga my world. Change of any sort requires courage.” –Mary Anne Radmacher. I am reminded today by a class I’m taking from Susi Hately of Functional Synergy that just because it’s hard doesn’t mean the Universe is telling you not to do it. I don’t have to be afraid of change.
  • to heal your heart problems such as anxiety and stressthe desire for tranquility mentioned earlier would be the antidote to this.

Doing the research for student reminded me how much I enjoyed this book.  So I re-read it.

Here’s just some of what “gold” had to tell me:

Attracts abundance and increases awarenessI’ve dwelled on abundance as a goal throughout this newsletter adding that it starts with the heart.

Helps us

  • get in touch with wisdom, profound knowledge, self-confidence, inner strength, courage, and joylow self esteem and courage was mentioned in the pink section.  Self-confidence is the other side of that coin.  Work on one and you’ll work on the other. Finding joy is the same as finding abundance, and using inner strength is a reminder, again, that it’s already inside of you—be with it.
  • cut us loose from feelings of frustration, inadequacy, and futilityI mentioned fear in the pink section.  Fear of being inadequate to the challenge and the frustration of living with that fear as it holds me back has been one of those old patterns I want to let go of (also from the pink section).  So yes, cut loose from that!

Creates a sense of well-beingwe all want well-being.  We often confuse that with monetary goals; but as mentioned over and over in the opening section, what creates a feeling of abundance (well-being) for you is built into your personal DNA—your physiological weather. How you create your sense of well being will be your personal life’s mission, and once you do that—you’ll be bringing it to others.

“A powerful protective energy, gold strengthens all fields of the body and spirit, and helps you accept what is happening in your life. Use gold for clarity, decision making, and connecting to the spiritual realm.”—I’ve mentioned fearing change.  Accepting that the path I’m on is my own path and no one else’s means I look within myself for the gifts there and create what is mine to create.  I look within my heart and creatively bring forth the gift.  That’s heart chakra combined with the sacral/creative chakra.  That’s adding pink and gold to the green.

Notice the water/sacral chakra element that pink and gold empowers?—Cutting loose of inadequacy and frustration, letting go of old patterns, releasing fears.  Working on one energy center will always affect the others.  So by adding the pink and gold vibrations/energies we empower not only the heart and sacral chakras but the whole chakra system.

How about you?  Looking for a way to boost your chakra energies?  Try adding the attributes of pink and gold. Adding color to the palette always affects the other colors.  Working on one energy center will always affect the others.  Happy color blending!

Breathwork and Visualization:

White/Pink Bubble Technique:

This technique is good to use when you are feeling vulnerable.  My “meditation to go” section suggested visualizing surround yourself and others in white light. This section suggests adding pink into your life.  This technique can be used with either color!  You choose!

1.     Assuming you’re not in immediate danger, prepare yourself with deep breathing.

2.     Visualize yourself completely surrounded by a big white or pink energy bubble that extends six to twelve inches away from your body.  Feel yourself being cleansed of          negative energy and protected from any negative energy around you.

3.     You can also visualize the bubble around another person, place, or situation.

Source: Color Energy.  How Color Can Transform Your Life—Cristina Bornstein and Anthony Gill

Affirmations:

  • I totally and unconditionally love and approve of myself at all times.
  • I trust in my own perfection.
  • I am good enough to have what I want.
  • It is safe to have life easy and pleasurable.
  • I allow abundance and prosperity into my life.
  • I trust the Infinite Intelligence to give me everything I need for my growth
    and development.
  • I love who I am exactly as I am.
  • I am grateful for the joy of being me.
  • I trust the process of life.
  • I love myself exactly as I am right now.
  • I am adequate at all times to do that which is required of me.
  • I love who I am.
  • I am willing to love everything about myself.
  • I trust in love.
  • I open my heart to love.
  • I forgive myself
  • I forgive those who need forgiving for not being what I wanted them to be.
  • Love is the purpose of my life.
  • Love is everywhere.
  • I open myself to the healing powers of love.
  • I follow the path of the heart.
  • I delight in sharing my joy.
  • Joy is my reason for living.

Sources:
The Book of Chakras,
Ambika Wauters.
http://www.1lovespirit.com/affirmations-chakras.html

Diet and the Heart and Sacral Chakras: For the heart chakra add green—green tea, green leafy vegetables, green herbs like basil, coriander, marjoram, oregano, parsley.  And remember to add pink—apples come to mind. For the Sacral Chakra to balance the body’s water element add lots of water!  Also add fruits and vegetable juices.

Aromatherapy and the Heart and Sacral Chakras: For the Heart Chakra try jasmine, rose, bergamot, and lavender among others.  For the Sacral Chakra try frankincense, jasmine, clary sage, and patchouli, among others.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Heart and Sacral Chakras: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Heart Chakra gems: Rose Quartz (add pink!), Diamond, Peridot, Malachite, Green Tourmaline, Boji stone, among others.

Sacral Chakra gems: Carnelian, Tiger’s eye, Onyx, and Citrine among others.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Heart and Sacral Chakras:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.  Heart chakra poses include the Highlighted CD’s focus, Hanumanasana/monkey pose.  Also try back bends that open the heart center area like camel pose and bow pose among others. Bridge pose is also a back bend to try which also works with the sacral chakra.

This month’s highlighted pose, extended side-angle stimulates sacral chakra.  Other sacral chakra poses include fish pose, butterfly/cobbler’s pose, and pelvic tilts, among others.

27
March

 

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season. ~

This month I’m suggesting you focus on being present, on the “now”, and accessing your spiritual essence so you can have access to the small wonders in your life which give your life meaning.  The crown chakra energy gives life meaning.  When the crown chakra is balanced, you experience peace and notice the small wonders in your life.  You experience fulfillment.

The crown chakra creates that inner calm of meditative moments.  The crown chakra is on the top of your head and vibrates to the color violet.  It is the fastest vibrating chakra and brings us closer to oneness with the Universe.  It is associated with knowledge and understanding.

“..it relates to questions like ‘Why am I here?’ and statements like ‘There must be more to life than this.’  These issues may never be looked at.  On the other hand, the action of exploring them may be the beginning of a radical change of life and work.” – Healing with crystals and chakra energies by Sue and Simon Lilly.

I think that when you focus on your inner presence, you define yourself less and less by outer standards.  You experience fulfillment because you have all you need inside.  The outer standards don’t matter anymore because there is no more “outer”.  There is no longer a separation between yourself and others—all is seen as “self”.  We are all one.

Having an open mind and the ability to question the status quo is an example of a balanced seventh chakra. When our seventh chakra is balanced we experience our own limitless nature. We are connected to spirit, but not addicted to that connection.

When your crown chakra is balanced, you experience fulfillment because you bring what is in you out to the world through the energy of peace.  “Once we start living from and within the crown chakra, we start to be thankful for our lives exactly as they are.”  The Book of Chakras by Ambika Wauters.  This inner calm draws others to you allowing you to be a channel of healing energy.

Being a channel of healing energy relates back to the violet color this chakra vibrates to.  Healing is represented by the color violet—the blue giving detachment and the ability to be devoted to the flow of energy, and the red supplying motivation to be of use to others.

Violet is also associated with imagination and inspiration.  Put violet in your life when there is:

  • A need to rebalance life
  • A need to speed up the natural healing energy of the body
  • A need to use the imagination in practical ways
  • A need to integrate new skills into everyday life
  • A need to remove all sorts of obstacles in life
  • A need to calm hyperactivity, or energize lethargy and depression.”

Source:  Healing with crystals and chakra energies by Sue and Simon Lilly.  (See the gem section below for some gem therapy to help bring violet into your life.)

The grounding root chakra vibrates to the color red. Just as the violet color of the crown chakra uses both red and blue energies, staying grounded in your body helps to stabilize the crown chakra.  This can be achieved as simply as eating and drinking pure foods, getting rest and exercising the body.  The crown chakra reminds you that God is in you—so treating your body like a temple is appropriate, isn’t it?

We need rest, tranquility, and peace to contemplate the small wonders and mysteries of life. Doing regular yoga and meditative practices develops both the root chakra and the crown chakra.  Daily reflections ground you—such as noticing the small wonders that present themselves in your day.

According to A Handbook of Chakra Healing by Kalashatra Govinda, “Normally a strong, healthy crown chakra ensures a long, healthy life. Chakra work can stimulate the crown chakra, thereby protecting against chronic illnesses and promoting the body’s own natural healing processes.” She lists a weakness in the immune system as being an attribute of a weakness or block in the crown chakra. She reminds us that all the chakras work together toward a healthy body, and that the best way of enhancing the crown chakra through natural healing methods is to engage in intensive work on all the other chakras.

One of the ways our seventh chakra can get out of balance is when we become attached to results and outcomes. We then believe that it’s our striving and effort that controls the outcomes of our life.  Then we have rigid belief systems—such as believing in the body’s inability to heal as we get older, and have a closed mind to thinking anything else is possible.  When you have a balanced crown chakra, you understand that “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.”—John Lennon.  We can handle whatever happens because we’re okay with what is.

My May 2010 newsletter referenced a wonderful book on the subject of “Loving What Is” by Byron Katie.  Becoming attached to results and outcomes—a sign of an unbalanced crown chakra—can be painful when things don’t go as planned.  Byron uses something she calls “The Work”.  “The Work” consists of four questions and a “turnaround”, a way of experiencing the opposite of what you believe.  The questions are:  “Is it true?  Can you absolutely know that it’s true?  How do you react when you believe that thought? Who would you be without the thought? Byron says that “when I believed my thoughts, I suffered, but that when I didn’t believe them, I didn’t suffer, and this is true for every human being.” She says anyone can do “The Work” by visiting www.thework.com.  The Website includes free materials to download, audio and video clips, a network of Work facilitators, etc.

“The seventh chakra is about opening ourselves up to the spirit of creation living our lives through divine guidance and seeing the world with a sense of wonder, love, amazement, and unity, as we did as a small child. When you reach this ultimate balanced state, you are truly at peace with yourself and the world. You emanate love, wisdom, and compassion.” Anatomy for Yoga, Nicky Jenkins & Leigh Brandon.  “Seeing the world with a sense of wonder”—that’s what this month’s focus on “small wonders” is all about.

So while opening up the seventh chakra is associated with psychological maturity and spiritual development, I think it’s the sense of wonder and the amazement of a child as described in the previous paragraph that is so important here. “That’s the real trouble with the world, too many people grow up. They forget. They don’t remember what it’s like to be twelve years old.”— Walt Disney: Was founder of Walt Disney Productions.

What a wonderful chakra when balanced!  We cultivate the ability to be mature enough to know when it’s time to play—to do something as innate as “wonder”.  How did we forget?  It’s time to remember.

Breathwork and Visualization:

Affirmations:

  • God is in me, above me, below me, and around me at all times.
  • I seek the highest truth and the most healing ways to live my life.
  • I honor and protect my divine spirit.
  • I know that all is good despite appearances to the contrary.
  • I look within where I am safe, loved, and protected.
  • My spirit is eternal.  It loves beauty, harmony, peace, and joy.
  • I trust that my highest good and greatest joys are unfolding now.
  • I am grateful for all the good things and people in my life.
  • I accept who I am and honor the spirit within me.
  • I live in joy and gratitude for the goodness that fills my life.
  • I appreciate the beauty of Earth and will honor and protect it as well as I can.
  • I know my higher purpose is being fulfilled now.
  • I trust God to show me the next step in my process.
  • Goodness and joy are mine in all situations.
  • I am thankful for the awareness and insight I have into the profound mystery of life.
  • I honor all people, all religions and all spiritual paths.  Each leads to God.
  • Thank you for my life, for who I am and for what you have allowed me to become.
  • I am connected to and part of the Universal creative energy.

Sources:
The Book of Chakras,
Ambika Wauters.
Power Mudras, Yoga Hand Postures for Women
by Sabrina Mesko.

Diet and the Third-eye Chakra: The crown chakra enjoys a pure, light vegetarian diet.

Aromatherapy and the Third-eye Chakra: The crown chakra enjoys frankincense, lavender, and rosewood, among others.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Third-eye Chakra: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Crown Chakra gems are: Amethyst, fluorite, sugilite, diamond, and Alexandrite, among others.  “Violet stones combine the vibrations of practical, down-to-earth red energy with the energy of blue—the expansive, spacious, undefined flow of peace.

Combining the two extremes allows the violet stones to bring a state of balance wherever it is required, while having a special focus on the workings of the mind.  Violet stones help the mind to become more organized and orderly.  This can aid where there is restlessness and difficulty sleeping.  Dynamic rest and effortless action are the characteristics qualities that violet stones can bring to our lives.”  – Healing with crystals and chakra energies by Sue and Simon Lilly.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Crown Chakra:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.  Yoga postures and breathwork are intended as preparation for meditation—stimulating both the third-eye and crown chakras.

Yoga without the connection of breath awareness is simply a stretching practice. So a consistent yoga practice stimulates all the chakras, as does the many breathwork practices outlined in the current and past newsletters.

Although not necessarily yoga, “dancing connects us with the higher realms of the divine.” And “Meditation can help you connect with your inner self.” The Book of Chakras, Ambika Walters. Hare pose, Half Shoulderstand as well as Headstand—if they are in your practice, are also stimulating to the crown chakra.  This month’s highlighted pose, the tortoise pose, was also chosen for its contemplative aspects.

25
February

The brow chakra is especially responsive to affirmations of our goodness and confirmations of our worth.

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on The brow chakra is especially responsive to affirmations of our goodness and confirmations of our worth. Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Hatha yoga is the branch of yoga which concentrates on physical health and mental well-being.  It is the yoga I teach.  “Hatha yoga uses bodily postures (asanas), breathing techniques (pranayama), and meditation (dyana) with the goal of bringing about a sound, healthy body and a clear, peaceful mind.”  http://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/hatha+yoga .

The word hatha is a compound of the two Sanskrit words ha and tha meaning sun and moon.  The Sun rules the visible world.  The Moon rules the invisible worlds. http://essence-of-yoga.net/sun-moon-hatha-yoga-symbolismThis came to mind for me when we discussed the five elements and their connection to magic.  Remember the connection to the Archangels Michael, Archangel of the Sun, is linked with Fire, and Gabriel, the Archangel of the Moon, with Water.  Connecting the visible world with the invisible world is what I’ve tried to do with this month’s focus on the magic of the “little people”.

The third-eye/brow chakra connects the two worlds.  When fully activated, this chakra stimulates both the right and left hemispheres of the brain.  The right controls creative thinking, the left controls rational, analytical thinking.  “Working together they create a harmonious vision of reality that incorporates grounded, logical thinking and intuitive and imaginative experience.  The brow chakra offers us energy to awaken our minds and question whether what we have been taught is true or false.”  The Book of Chakras, Discover the Hidden Forces Within You by Ambika Wauters.

This is the perfect chakra for this month’s focus on allowing magic into our lives!  The third-eye/brow chakra is located between the eyebrows and vibrates to the color indigo blue. The awakening of the third-eye chakra leads to clairvoyance or the ability to see on the non-physical planes…perhaps the ability to see magic?

If you’ve been practicing yoga and meditation regularly for a while (weekly at least, daily at best), you’re already a step ahead as this boosts your connection to self.  It boosts your spirituality and enhances your mind.  Meditation helps you move toward right brain activity which is a more relaxed state of bliss where we are all connected and one in the present moment.  Right-brain thinking uses pictures and is very kinesthetic in how we process the moment.  It’s all about energy and we are connected as “energy beings”.  This type of thinking is a huge “leg up” on being open to allowing magic into your life.

The right side of the brain is where imagination rules.  In the link below, Jill Bolte Taylor, a brain scientist, describes the morning she had a massive stroke, and watched as her brain functions — motion, speech, self-awareness — shut down one by one.

She literally speaks to witnessing her right brain hemisphere take over during some moments of her stroke, and then her left brain hemisphere would step in.  She could distinguish the feelings between the two. It took her eight years to completely recover.  Her realization of the effects of right hemisphere thinking and the idea that we all have it in us to choose to live this way motivated her to recover. She talks of “finding nirvana” when her right-brain activity took over.

To loosely quote her summary at the end:  “If I have found nirvana than everyone can and I can picture a world filled with beautiful, peaceful compassionate loving people who know they can come to this space at any time.  They can purposely choose to step into the right hemisphere side of their brain.

Who are we?  We are the life force power of the universe with manual dexterity and two cognitive minds and we have the power to choose moment by moment how we want to be in the world.  We can step into the consciousness of right hemisphere thinking where I am the light force power of the universe—the 50 trillion beautiful molecular geniuses that make up my being—at one with all that is.  Or I can choose left—where I become a single individual separate from the flow, separate from you—intellectual.

These are the “we” inside of me.  Which would you choose?  Which do you choose? And when?  I believe the more time we spend choosing to run the deep inner peace circuitry of our right hemispheres the more peace we will project into the world and the more peaceful our planet will be, and I thought that was an idea worth spreading.”

An astonishing story in her video—it’s worth the 18 minutes of listening.  It brought me to tears, and also reaffirmed my dedication to right brain hemisphere stimulating activities like yoga and meditation: jill_bolte_taylor_s_powerful_stroke_of_insight.html

Jill’s dramatic event allowed her to see the magic of relaxing the analytical left brain hemisphere thinking.  We luckily don’t have to wait for something that dramatic. We can choose to see the magic. We can choose to live at peace with the world and nature—which is one of the ways to open to the magic within it.

The third-eye chakra’s “spiritual purpose is to offer us the possibility of wisdom, discernment, imagination, intuition, and knowledge.  As we distill truth from life experience, we develop this chakra and strengthen our spirit.” The Book of Chakras, Discover the Hidden Forces Within You by Ambika Wauters.  Just as the various books and experiences of my life opened me to seeing the magic of the glowing ball in my hearth mentioned in the first “yoga quote” section, it’s the development of your third-eye chakra through your personal life experiences that will direct you to your personal truth.

If I had been open to only the analytical or logical side of my thinking, I would have completely discounted what my eyes were seeing, or perhaps I wouldn’t have seen it at all!  It is in opening to the spiritual, emotional aspects of your experience that you develop your third-eye chakra.

“Find the answers in your own words.  Ground yourself in the foundation of your own experience.  You cannot know something until you discover it for yourself.” Virasana / Hero Pose card

“Bridge the wisdom gained from past experience with an openness to learn something new.  Moments of effort accumulate, creating new paths for energy to flow.” Setu Bandha Sarvangasana / Bridge Pose card

–both from Yoga Path Cards written and illustrated by Susan Woldman (and highlighted in my February 2010 newsletter!) http://www.yogalifestyle.com/DEUSSWYogaPathCards.htm.

“Wisdom and discernment along with imagination intuition and knowledge are the qualities of this chakra.  To distill wisdom from your life experiences, both good and difficult, and to choose life health, joy and fulfillment in every aspect of your life are aspects of this chakra.”  The Book of Chakras, Discover the Hidden Forces Within You by Ambika Wauters.

Just as Jill Bolte Taylor talked about the ability to choose to project peace into the world—to choose to step into right-brain thinking, we have the ability to choose to live in and be open to the magic of this wonderful world.  That’s third-eye chakra development.

Examine your self-limited ideas that make you feel “less than”.  Strengthen your spirit through third-eye chakra stimulating activities like meditation or positive reflection/contemplation.  Affirmations come to mind—see the ones below! The brow chakra is especially responsive to affirmations of our goodness and confirmations of our worth.

Visualize the life you want. The reason visualization is so powerful is because as you create pictures in your mind of seeing yourself with what it is you want, you are generating thoughts and feelings of having it now. Visualization is simply powerfully focused thought in pictures, and it causes equally powerful feelings.”—The Secret, Rhonda Byrne. Each morning as you awake, your brain is still in a receptive dream state.  Visualizing first thing in the morning during this time is especially powerful.  Transform your brow chakra energy by working with affirmations and visualization.

I like to say in my yoga classes that “the inside you needs the outside you to take care of you.”  I’d like to say I came up with that myself, but I know I didn’t.  I constantly remind my students to listen to their bodies.  How hard are you on yourself in general?  Do you push yourself with unrealistic expectations?  Do you compare yourself incessantly to others?  That’s a sign of low self-worth and an under-developed third-eye chakra.  Taking good care of yourself allows you to take good care of others—love yourself unconditionally. It’s how you keep your inner power glowing—your inner self worth.  And it stimulates and strengthens your brow chakra!

When you’re tired, learn to be extra gentle with yourself. I used to travel a lot when I worked for Rayovac.  My territory was the west coast so my body clock was always off when I returned home.  I learned to tell myself that all thinking was off-limits in this condition because I was tired, and when I was tired, nothing looked or felt good!  Any time I’d start to go down the path of feeling sorry for myself or overanalyzing the trip, I’d simply say silently “Stop! Not allowed!”  It worked and still does when I take the time to let my mind relax.  If you can’t take a nap during times of weariness, do something extra special for yourself.  One of my favorite comfort treats is a warm steamer at the local Caribou®.

Giving your power away to others is another sign of a deficient third-eye chakra.  Learn to question anything or anyone who negates your self-worth!

Another fun way to stimulate your third-eye chakra is the dress colorfully to stimulate your seeing.  Take yourself to places that are visually stimulating, pleasing to the eye, or inspiring. Color has been shown to have tremendous healing properties.  Chakra Balancing by Anodea Judith.  Each color has a unique frequency, a specific quantity of energy, & a wavelength. When drawn to one color more than others, the energy vibration of that color is what you need, at that moment, in order to improve your emotional state. http://www.squidoo.com/healingwithcolor

And if you want to know what the brow /third eye chakra color might mean in your life—“Put indigo in your life when there is:

  • A need to focus on personal issues, beliefs and ideas
  • A need to develop sensitivity to the inner senses and intuition
  • A need to cool and quieten normal mental processes
  • A need to relieve physical and mental and emotional pain
  • Inability or difficult in assimilating and understanding new concepts or philosophies
  • A need for temporary relief and removal from everyday problems and difficult experiences in life
  • A need for space and a desire for a period of solitude

The depths of indigo may seem unfathomable and mysterious, but they can yield useful perceptions.  Indigo is related to clairvoyance, clairsentience and clairaudience (clear seeing, feeling and hearing) and other psychic skills.  The deep, directionless depths of indigo can sedate the conscious minds to a degree where more subtle, delicate perceptions can be registered.”  (Like seeing magic in your life.)  Healing with Crystals and Chakra Energies by Sue and Simon Lilly.

A healthy brow chakra encourages balance in the lower chakras which is why “many yogis begin chakra work at the brow center. It’s also the easiest chakra to rouse, often helps the other chakras to open, and once open, counteracts negative consequences of imbalance in other chakras.”Chakra Meditation by Swami Saradananda.  Sounds like a great place to start!

Breathwork and Visualization: Close your eyes and imagine the possibility of some kind of breakthrough in your life.  It may be a personal breakthrough or it may be something related to the larger world.  Imagine the effect your possibility would have on each of your chakras—feeling it in your throat, your heart, your belly, your sensations, and grounding it into the very cells of your body.  Do this on a daily basis—running it from the top down—and see what actions you engage in that will help this vision come into manifestation.  Add your deep, slow belly-breaths to the visualization to increase the energy in your body. As Rhonda Byrne of The Secret emphasized, it’s the feeling that stimulates the law of attraction, creating the life you want.

To find your personal vision you must shift your attention from what is to what could be.  Your vision of what is possible becomes the source of inspiration for your creativity and the guiding purpose for your will.  Your vision can be large or small and both are necessary. You can look for better possibilities in your work, your relationships, or your community.  It is also important to hold a positive vision for the larger world, and to weave that vision with the visions of others.  Chakra Balancing by Anodea Judith.

Affirmations:

  • I think the very best of myself in all situations, at all times.
  • I believe I am unlimited in my capacity for joy, healing, and happiness.
  • I open myself to new energy, new people, places, and experiences.
  • I live in the light of my truth and I accept what I know.
  • Every situation is an opportunity for growth and healing.
  • I am the source of truth and love in my life.
  • As I tap into my inner wisdom, I know that all is well in my world.
  • I think positive thoughts about myself and everything around me.
  • I open myself to my intuition and deepest knowing.
  • I acknowledge I am the source in creating my life the way I would like it
    to be.
  • I accept that I am an unlimited being and that I can create anything I want.
  • I focus on what I love and draw it to me.
  • I rethink all negative thoughts about myself and others and change them to
    positive energy.
  • I am open to new ideas, people, and situations which will enhance my joy
    and happiness.
  • I deepen my insight and expand my vision into the realms of timelessness.

Sources:

The Book of Chakras, Ambika Wauters.
A Handbook of Chakra Healing, Spiritual Practice for Health, Harmony and Inner Peace,
Kalashatra Govinda.
http://www.1lovespirit.com/affirmations-chakras.html

Power Mudras, Yoga Hand Postures for Women
by Sabrina Mesko.

Diet and the Third-eye Chakra: Eating intentionally is an important element of diet for the third-eye chakra, as is dark blue/purple foods containing antioxidants which destroy free radicals in the body include eggplant, purple kale, blueberries, figs, plums, purple grapes, raisins, among others.

Aromatherapy and the Third-eye Chakra: Scents that stimulate the third-eye chakra include: Hyacinth, Rose Geranium, Lemon, Vetiver, Basil (surprisingly relaxing), patchouli, rosemary, mint, and juniper, among others.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Third-eye Chakra: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Third-eye Chakra gems are: Sapphire, tanzanite, lapis lazuli, kyanite, moonstone.   As a reminder and in keeping with the “little people theme this month, elemental spirits of the Earth can be invoked through crystals, herbs, salt and bread.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Third-eye Chakra:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.  The pituitary gland is located between the eyebrows and is traditionally called the “third eye” because it is the seat of intuition and clairvoyance.  “It’s called the master gland because it secretes a hormone that specifically monitors the activities of the other glands in the body.  Its basic hormones control skeletal growth and sexual development and maturation, as well as milk secretion in women.  It has a strong influence on thyroidal and adrenal function.  It controls blood pressure and is responsible for physical and psychological growth.

When we are deeply attuned to our inner knowing, trusting our intuition and using our creative imagination, this gland works well.  Our inner state of thought has a powerful influence on our physical well-being, as research is showing, and will affect our hormones and all our ductless glands.”  The Book of Chakras, Discover the Hidden Forces Within You by Ambika Wauters.

Poses that stimulate the third-eye chakra include: headstand prep/dolphin pose; and if headstand is in your practice, headstand pose, among others, such as:

Inversions like the straddle forward fold highlighted this month!  Inversions keep the “energetic nectar in the upper chakras, with the result that the body remains youthful.”  Chakra Meditation by Swami Saradananda.

There is a minor chakra known as the soma chakra, located above the top of your palate.  “”this is the energetic center linked with the serene energy of the moon, and meditation on this chakra helps you to release tension and anxiety, cool anger and experience a peaceful, contented sense of calm.  This chakra is said to be the source of a “divine nectar” of immortality that has the power to wash away impurities.  This energetic nectar is thought to seep out of the “cave” or hollow space between the hemispheres of the brain.  Most of the time, this youth-preserving nectar flows down through the soma chakra and the other energy centers beneath it until it reaches the solar plexus, where it is unfortunately “burnt off” by the solar-plexus chakra.  Chakra Meditation by Swami Saradananda.  One of the best ways to block the downward loss of energy is to practice another great inversion, Legs up the wall pose, highlighted in my January 2011 newsletter.

Yoga postures and breathwork are intended as preparation for meditation—stimulating both the third-eye and crown chakras.

27
January

 

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras.  The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson:  There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana.  They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column.  Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system.  Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body.  Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine.  Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there.  Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus.  In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

We’re focusing on all things heart centered this month, so the heart chakra is on-deck! Do you follow your heart even when your head is telling you otherwise?  That’s a tough one.  We are often encouraged to follow our heart and not our head, but sometimes we may feel we have to defer to “logic”.  Sometimes, however, your heart is so strong; your logic has to agree with it.

As a personal example a year and a half ago, I was faced with a decision regarding my full-time employment.  Economic changes were causing the powers that be to rearrange my duties of nine plus years.  Economic times being what they were, the most logical choice would have been to stay with full time employment, but my heart would not let me choose that option.  I knew I’d be very unhappy with the new arrangement—enough so that just the thought of it was affecting my health in a myriad of ways. That’s when logic had to side with health which happily sided with the heart.

See what I mean?  The heart was so strong, logic had to agree.  “Negative emotions such as anger, frustration, and anxiety (all emotions I was feeling) disturb the heart rhythm.  Positive emotions such as appreciation, love, or compassion produce coherent or functional patterns.  Feelings, distributed throughout the body, produce chemical changes within the entire system.” The Subtle Body, An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy by Cyndi Dale.

Ever wonder how often the heart wins out over the brain and perhaps why? Did you know that the heart has its own brain? “After extensive research, one of the early pioneers in neurocardiology, Dr. J. Andrew Armour, introduced the concept of a functional “heart brain” in 1991. His work revealed that the heart has a complex intrinsic nervous system that is sufficiently sophisticated to qualify as a “little brain” in its own right. The heart’s brain is an intricate network of several types of neurons, neurotransmitters, proteins and support cells like those found in the brain proper.”
http://www.heartmath.org/research/science-of-the-heart/introduction.html.

The heart’s electromagnetic field (EMF) is also much stronger than our brains EMF which might explain the heart’s influence over the brain’s “logic”:
“The heart’s electromagnetic field (EMF) emits fifty thousand femtoteslas (a measure of EMF), in contrast to the ten generated by the brain.  Other research shows that when separated from the magnetic field, the heart’s electrical field is sixty times greater thin amplitude than the brain’s field.  Through this field, a person’s nervous system tunes in to and responds to the magnetic fields produced by the hearts of other people.”  The Subtle Body, An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy by Cyndi Dale.  (Let’s remember this when we want to speak “heart-to-heart”.)

“The heart’s electromagnetic field—by far the most powerful rhythmic field produced by the human body—not only envelops every cell of the body but also extends out in all directions into the space around us. The cardiac field can be measured several feet away from the body by sensitive devices. Research conducted at the Institute of HeartMath (IHM) Research Center suggests that the heart’s field is an important carrier of information.”  http://www.heartmath.org/research/science-of-the-heart/head-heart-interactions.html

Other “research conducted at the Institute of HeartMath (IHM) Research Center showcase the heart at a key intuitive center, responding even to information about the future.” The Subtle Body, An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy, by Cyndi Dale.

So following our heart isn’t exactly fool’s play and sounds an awful lot like intuition. The chakra of intuition and clairvoyance is the third-eye chakra, but wait a minute.  Cyndi Dale, the author of The Subtle Body, An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy, believes that each of the major chakras (she talks of twelve) house a different type of psychic ability. So while I almost added the third-eye chakra to this month’s focus, I decided to focus on the heart chakra only and its intuitive aspects.  Don’t we often refer to following our heart as following our “gut”, or intuition?  Enough said.  Isn’t your heart really telling you what you want to do—what you should do?  Sounds like intuition to me.

Clairvoyance and intuition “develop in a much wiser stronger way, naturally, along with the development of the heart chakra.  The more open one’s heart, the easier one finds it to understand others, and therefore to accept, forgive, and embrace them.  When this development is part of the evolution of the human heart, then intuitive abilities develop naturally, within a spiritual framework.”  Meditation, Path to the Deepest Self, by Michal Levin.

The heart is “an organ of communication that can potentially manage the body’s intuitive processes.  It’s organically capable of performing certain brain-like functions.  In fact, between 60 and 65 percent of its cells are neural, identical to those present in the brain.  Energy—information that vibrates—flows constantly between the heart and the brain, assisting with emotional processing, sensory experience, memory and derivation of meaning from events, and reasoning.

Under correct conditions, such as when a person consciously ‘centers’ or focuses in the heart, the heart begins to run the brain.  (Most typically, the brain runs the body.)  Entrainment or the management of the body through the heart rather than brain leads to higher functioning mental and emotional states, as well as a healthier body.  It also enables a person to screen the outer environment for ‘good messages’ instead of ‘negative messages,’ enabling a more positive relationship with the external world.”  The Subtle Body, An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy, by Cyndi Dale.

So we use our heart chakra—our heart’s energy system—to intuit the world, and by following the heart, you have a healthier body.  Just when you think your brain is running the show, research finds that the heart initiates the first response to incoming events.

So what are some ways to work with your heart chakra?  We already talked about how backbends alleviate depression in the yoga pose section.  The physical practice of yoga deepens your awareness of your body so you become more conscious of your choices.  Yoga helps its practitioners learn to trust themselves—to follow their heart. One of my overriding themes in my yoga classes is to listen to your body and honor what you find.

Yoga postures align your body in purposeful ways.  Your natural posture is an indication of your unique blend of emotions residing in your body.  Your body is a map of all that’s happened to you in your life.  Try this experiment:  Stand with your shoulders hunched down and head drooping toward the floor.  Likewise, let your gaze travel toward the ground.  Does this posture feel empowering to you?  No!  Now stand up and open up your heart center.  Focus on the love you feel for someone or something special and send that energy out your heart center.  How empowering does that feel?  Feeling sad?  Try changing your posture in a purposeful way by opening up your heart center and see the effects this has on your mood.  Now that’s using your heart center chakra for the good of the body!  My February 2010 newsletter highlighted a wonderful “Heart-Breath” exercise that explains this exercise in more detail, and is worth repeating here:

The heart chakra also influences the lungs so breathwork is another great way to work with this chakra. I found the following wonderful breathwork exercise called “Heart Breath” from one of my favorite yoga ezines: http://www.yogamint.com. The author is Siri-Gian Khalsa, Intuitive, Healer and Teacher of Soul Connection.

“Start with long deep breathing through your nose. Now, just on the exhale, feel as though the air that you are exhaling is actually coming out of your heart center. How does that feel? Do you feel movement in your heart? Do you feel your world opening, getting brighter? Are you feeling calmer and more peaceful?

Next, if you find that someone is bugging you, or even yelling at you, or if you are in a group that is not getting along, or your children are noisily unhappy, just do this fascinating Heart Breath. Consciously direct the opening, expansive space you’re feeling towards them. As you do, track the miracles of change happening before your very eyes. They happen subtly, but very naturally.

You are actually moving incredibly powerful healing energy with your breath. Don’t get uptight or try hard. That would block this beautiful healing breath. Instead, relax and calmly breathe out of your heart. This is your own essential healing breath. Use it all the time and watch your life become magic!”

Did the experiment above make you a believer that emotions reside in the body?  For those of you that can’t buy emotions residing in the tissues of the bodies, let me remind you of “the numerous reports of organ transplant recipients who later experienced changes in personality traits, tastes for food, music, activities…”  It’s in the repetition of holding an emotion within your body that embeds it into the tissues.

Paul Pearsall, MD, a psychoneuroimmunologist and author of The Heart’s Code, has researched the transference of memories through organ transplantation. After interviewing nearly 150 heart and other organ transplant recipients, Pearsall proposes the idea that cells of living tissue have the capacity to remember.”  For more examples of this, go to http://www.viewzone.com/memorytest22.html.

Louise Hay has written about this subject in several books.  Try You Can Heal Your Life for starters.  She includes a directory of ailments and emotional causes for each with a corresponding affirmation to help overcome the illness.

Another good book on the subject is Your Body Speaks Your Mind, Decoding the Emotional, Psychological, and Spiritual Messages That Underlie Illness by Deb Shapiro.  She includes a system-by-system guide to your body that reveals what it is telling you about yourself.

Other ways to work with the heart chakra include doing what we love to do. This can be as simple as a few minutes spent enjoying the sunrise or sunset and as complicated as moving to a foreign land to take a job in the field of your dreams.  Both are energizing and activate the heart chakra.  Only you know the desires that reside within your heart.  Your dreams and desires are as unique as your fingerprint.

Start small.  Pick something small that you love to do that is easy to add into your schedule regularly, and do it.  You’ll not only feel a sense of accomplishment because you’ve added something fun to your life, you’ll also feel nurtured and loved.  That’s activating your heart chakra energy.

How about just enjoying the moment? Sometimes I have to stop and remind myself that I may not be exactly where I want to be, but right here is pretty darned good.  Just having gratitude for where you are at can be very empowering and uplifting.  You can enjoy more joy in your life simply by noticing it. Let me repeat that again: You can enjoy more joy in your life simply by noticing it.  How easy is that?

“Play a game with yourself today, seeing how much delight you can extract from every situation. Find the richness within each interaction and experience that you have.  Savor the sweetness that today (and every day) brings you.”  Daily Guidance from Your Angels, 365 Angelic Messages to Soothe, Heal and Open your Heart, by Doreen Virtue, PhD.

Use the power of laughter to energize the heart.  “Laughter is sacred.  Laugh more, play more, and sing more to harmonize yourself with the natural world.  Even humming moves your vibrational chord outward to mesh with the universe and all of humanity.  (See last month’s newsletter for more on the many benefits of humming.)  Delight in the unfoldment of this great musical that you call ‘life.’ …A heart filled with gaiety, mirth, playfulness, and laughter is a heart filled with Nirvana-essence.”  –Laughing Buddha / Maitreya section in Archangels & Ascended Masters, by Doreen Virtue, PhD.  She goes on to say that when you are laughing, notice how your heart fills with warm love, peace, and utter security.

If I didn’t spend time simply being with my husband each day, I’d feel downright depleted.  There are those that say we’re joined at the hip, and they’d be right.  To some it might appear over the top, but until you’ve been there, don’t knock it; and once you’re there, you’ll feel your heart chakra expand with joy.  “And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.” –Friedrich Nietzsche.

Being with someone you love also connects your heart chakra to your root chakra as highlighted in my November 2010 newsletter:  Taking a few minutes to connect with someone you love—be it human or animal—can be very grounding. I know from experience that when I’m the most stressed, just feeling my husband’s arms around me provides the most nurturing grounding experience.  It’s immediate.

We send heart energy out whenever we hug or touch someone, but also when we hold them in our affectionate gaze. I’ve always been attracted to the eyes.  I think you can say a lot without saying a word just through the eyes.  So let your heart speak through touch—both physical and mental.  Get or give a massage, go dancing, or go for a walk with someone you care about.  Even going for a walk by yourself exposes you to the world and allows your heart to connect with others.  Remember:  to love yourself is one of the primary principles of healing.

Do something nice for yourself. Twice today in my inspirational readings I was reminded of this.  What did you immediately think of when you read the first sentence of this paragraph?  Do that.

Here’s my personal example:  I love touchstones—basically crystals, stones, or gems.  I have them everywhere.  Stones from the Earth, be they gems or river rocks, talk to me.  They each have a story, just as we do.  Their life on this earth gave them the form we now see, and this form contains the lessons of that life.   So the first thing I thought of when I read the suggestion to do something nice for myself was the beautiful natural stone necklace I saw at the magical retail store I teach at on Thursday’s in Anoka:  Krista Artista Gallery.  http://www.kristaartistagallery.com/ .  I don’t wear much jewelry now that I am teaching yoga full time, so I have not indulged myself in my passion for touchstones lately; and have a hard time justifying the spend on my new income.

Unwittingly I have been using the law of attraction wrong.  The more I focus on my income not being enough, the more “my income not being enough” I’ll attract.  Now that doesn’t mean I’ll buy the exact necklace I’m thinking about, but I am reminded that whatever you do for your inner self is always appreciated.  So allow more of what you love into your life to keep the flow going.  It doesn’t have to be expensive—just be kind to yourself.  That could mean taking care of your body through sleep, exercise, healthful foods, and protecting yourself from negativity. To have more energy, abundance, peace, purpose, and everything that you desire, nurture yourself.  You deserve it.  Making time for yourself pays big dividends.  I’ve quoted it before in my yoga classes:  the inner you needs the outer you to take care of you.  Give to yourself as much as you give of yourself.  That’s healthy heart chakra—balancing both giving AND receiving.

The ability to relate resides in our heart chakra. How well do you relate to others and they to you?  What are some ways you can work on improving those skills?  Just listening more can increase your ability to relate tremendously.  Listen with your heart.  That’s even better. Going back to laughter being the best medicine, make it a point to seek out those that aren’t smiling and go out of your way to put a smile on their face.  All that you can take with you is that which you give away.  Give a smile.

Breathwork and Visualization:

A small calm space:

“Finding a few minutes once a day to be silent in your own company will help you to see opportunities and new solutions that would improve the quality of your life.  Crystals can help to bring balance into our energy systems but it is up to us to maintain and build upon that state of balance.

Use some green stones to bring some of the qualities of nature into your home. (See the Gem therapy and the Heart Chakra section below for some heart chakra stone suggestions.)  Set a small space aside in a corner or on a table.  Keep it clear of everyday clutter, and arrange some of your favorite green stones there, together with a beautiful plant and a candle, or other items that help you feel calm and relaxed.

1.     Take two minutes a day to sit and look at the stones.  Sit comfortably in front of them, light the candle or burn some incense.

2.     Take up one or two of the stones and hold them in your hands, close your eyes and relax.  You are making a space in your mind, your emotions and your life for new things to enter.

3.     Open your eyes to look again at the stones and then close them again and think of the space you are creating in your mind.  Repeat if you wish.

4.     When you have finished, return the stones to their place.

The energy of any room in the home can be enlivened by having a small quiet space somewhere within it.

Green Breathing

This exercise easily creates a meditative state.  Using a green crystal as a focus of attention naturally calms the mind and acts as a support to the entire process.  Sit in a comfortable position and take a minute to settle yourself.  Have a green stone in front of you—the type is not important.

1.      Look at the stone, letting your eyes rest on it gently.  Keep looking at the stone and let your mind be aware of your breathing.

2.     After a few minutes, close your eyes and imagine you are breathing in the color green.  If you get distracted, open your eyes and gaze at the stone for a while longer, then close your eyes and breathe in the color green again.

3.     When you are ready, put the stone aside and relax a minute before returning to normal activity.”

Source:  Healing with Crystals and Chakra Energies by Sue and Simon Lilly.

Affirmations:

 

  • I am quiet and listen to my heat’s song.
  • I live in love
  • Love gives me wings
  • I am visible, and I matter
  • I stand in complete satisfaction
  • I embrace life in its absolute fullness
  • At this moment, I have all that I need
  • Each moment is a precious gift in BE-ing
  • I am free to enjoy every precious moment of pure love with my beloved.
  • I am love.  I am peace.  I am light.
  • I follow my heart’s desire for truth and goodness and love.
  • Joy is my reason for living.
  • I look for the joy in myself and see it in all things.
  • I delight in sharing my joy.
  • I let my heart shine.
  • I treat myself with love and respect.
  • I’m in charge of my schedule, and I’m generous with myself.
  • I deserve the same affection and care as everyone else.
  • I notice and enjoy how sweet my life is.
  • I count my blessings and am grateful for what I have.
  • I enjoy my experiences.
  • I listen to my heart.

Sources:

Goddess.com.au
The Book of Chakras, Ambika Wauters.

A Handbook of Chakra Healing, Spiritual Practice for Health, Harmony and Inner Peace, Kalashatra Govinda.

http://www.1lovespirit.com/affirmations-chakras.html

Power Thoughts, 365 Daily Affirmations, Louise L. Hay.

Power Mudras, Yoga Hand Postures for Women by Sabrina Mesko.

The Book of Chakras, by Ambika Wauters

Archangels & Ascended Masters, by Doreen Virtue, PhD.
Daily Guidance from Your Angels, 365 Angelic Messages to Soothe, Heal and Open your Heart, by Doreen Virtue, PhD.

Diet and the Heart Chakra: Green leafy vegetables help stimulate the heart chakra and are good for the heart.  I provided a couple of links to go to for juicing and soup-making in last year’s February 2010 newsletter not archived yet.  I repeat them here for ease of reference:
Try: http://www.healingdaily.com/juicing-for-health/juicing-recipes.htm, or http://dkmommyspot.com/nutrient-rich-vegetable-soup-or-how-to-make-soup-without-a-recipe/, or www.foodnetwork.com/topics/soup.  Other heart chakra nourishing foods could include green tea and green herbs such as basil and immune-boosting oregano.

Aromatherapy and theHeart Chakra : Scents associated with the heart chakra are some of my absolute favorites such as angelica, jasmine, rose, geranium, and bergamot.  There’s also lilac, lavender, orange blossom, neroli, and ylang ylang.  For the heart chakra’s influence on the lungs try eucalyptus and peppermint, among others.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.  Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Gem therapy and the Heart Chakra: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Heart Chakra gems are:  Rose quartz, malachite, green tourmaline, ruby, green emerald and aventurine, among others.

“Green stones strengthen the main quality of the heart chakra, which is to grow and expand in a harmonious manner in such a way as to fulfill the individual’s core needs.  Personal space and freedom to be oneself are essential for wellbeing and health.  We can use crystals to help us achieve our goals in life, both by giving us quiet in order to see things more clearly and by encouraging growth of qualities we need.

..choose crystals to encourage qualities that are needed for you to succeed.  Encourage optimism and clarity with yellow crystals. Calm with green stones, ability to learn with blue, co-ordination with violet.  A clear quartz can reinforce your intention if it is programmed….Use some green stones to bring some of the qualities of nature into your home.”  Healing with Crystals and Chakra Energies by Sue and Simon Lilly.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Heart Chakra:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding and activate the chakras.  Poses that open your heart center area poses we emphasize here.  I highlighted cobra pose in this month’s “yoga pose”.  This is a great heart opener.  Others include Fish pose, Bow pose, Camel pose, and Yoga mudra pose done while standing, among others.

10
January

Use your will power and express your excitement in 2011!

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Use your will power and express your excitement in 2011! Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras. The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson: There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system. Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body. Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine. Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there. Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus. In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

January is “Etch n Sketch” month!  Do over time!  Clean slate!  I know we are already well into January. So you’ve probably already started your New Year’s resolutions, right?  Perhaps they’ve already gone to the wayside.  If, as you read this, you are realizing what “one day at a time” really means, recognize that the present moment is the perfect time to make a change.  So maybe this late newsletter will help inspire you to get back on track!

What does January invoke in you?  For many of us, it is traditionally a time of change.
A new year means new goals right?  We all want to set goals, but historically the majority of us don’t stick to our plans to achieve them.  It’s not so much that we aren’t happy with where we are at; it’s more that we always see room for improvement. We want to make our mark upon the world—regardless of our age.

As we embark upon our own personal versions of “improvement”, remember that any type of goal, resolution, or intention brings with it change.  Change is hard sometimes—hence the historical lack of sticking with those New Year’s resolutions.  We tend to like to keep things as they are.  But if you keep doing what you’ve been doing, you’ll keep getting what you’ve been getting.  How’s that working for you? “You will not develop your power by having others take risks for you, or by making sure the outcome of a venture is guaranteed before you begin.” Chakra Balancing by Anodea Judith.  It is said that insanity is doing the same things over and over but expecting different results.

So we’re here to explore using the chakra of expression and the chakra of will power to bring about the changes/progress we desire. Increase the chances of succeeding in this year’s intentions by honing in on the end result you desire with excitement.  Use that feeling as you visualize yourself having achieved what you intend in 2011.  It’s the feeling of excitement at having already achieved your desire that manifests—the Law of Attraction at work. If you’ve been affirming something in particular, but feeling its opposite as you affirm, you will manifest the feeling. And just when you think that any type of change is hard, remember, life gets easier and more exhilarating when you are excited about it.  Use your will power and express your excitement in 2011!

While sometimes I think we are harder on ourselves than we need to be in the area of self-improvement, this is a great time to use the January energy as an impetus to create the life we love. It’s a literal “kick in the pants” energy surrounding January.  So let’s use it!

The throat chakra is about expression and the solar plexus chakra is about using our will to achieve the results we desire.  I can think of no better energy partners to call on to help us “make our mark” in 2011 and “be what we will to be”.

My March 2010 newsletter had highlighted a wonderful yoga teacher/consultant that also happens to be able to see chakras and auras, TeriLeigh Schmidt.  (Want to experience some of her expertise with chakra energy? Come to her workshop at Better Day Yoga April 8 – 10, 2011 where she is presenting her “Energetics of Yoga” weekend intensive! ) She had informed me that my throat chakra was my dominant chakra, but added it’s been a bit blocked as I grew up. Now with my own yoga instruction and the other classes that I teach, I am working on that energy. One of the things she’d recommended was to work with my throat chakra energy by using my voice.

How can you use your voice to express in 2011? That’s not as scary as it sounds.  We all can sing in the shower or the car without facing any fears of doing so in public!  If the simple practice of singing to myself can help loosen and release my throat chakra energy for better expression later, then why not?  Clear out your throat chakra energy regularly and watch your true expression come to life.

Not sure about singing in the shower?  Do you have a favorite peaceful song that makes you feel calmer when you sing or hum it?  My go-to song all year round is Silent Night.  Typically when I’m stressed as I’m driving, I start humming it rather than listen to the radio.  It calms me down in no time and helps me concentrate on the road better too.  Turns out the fact that Silent Night is a well known song actually helps with the calming effect according to the following :

“If you will hum five minutes daily neuroscientists state you will improve your physical and mental health. We have tested the power of humming with students and executives to increase long-term memory and learning skills. Discover for yourself what it means to your career.

Humming is so healthy for you that we suggest you hum while sitting at your computer. A lousy five (5) minutes daily will do the following:

a) Increase airflow to your lungs up to 38%.
b) Improve the health to your sinuses (hollow air-filled spaces in back of your nasal cavity) by reducing infection up to 32%.
c) Reduce pain, headaches and congestion from sinusitis.
d) Cause brainwave rhythms (electrical cycles per second) to change
from Beta (13-40 Hz) for alert concentration to Alpha (8-13 Hz)
for deep relaxation integrating left and right hemispheres of brain.

When you hum for a minimum of five minutes you begin to increase Nitric Oxide (NO) in your paranasal sinuses. NO is 15 to 17 times higher – than those not humming. Please read it again: 15-17x greater – compared to non-hummers.

Humming causes improved sinus ventilation (purified air) by circulating oxygenated blood into your lungs. OK, Nitric Oxide signals the smooth muscles in your body to relax. It causes vasodilation (widening) and increase blood flow.

Dr. Louis J. Ignarro (UCLA) said, “The research indicates Nitric Oxide helps prevent heart attacks and stroke.” Dr. Lungberg was quoted, “Healthy sinuses have a high concentration of NO.”

Conclusion: Humming appears to be more than just replacing the words we
forgot to that song. We know you know how to hum, but here is what we found teaching this strategy to students and executives. It takes 5-10 minutes of daily practice
humming for 21 days for the benefits to kick-in and become a habit (autopilot).

We teach this humming strategy to students and executives to increase their
learning skills, and in particular long-term memory and speed reading.

Can you remember the tune of Happy Birthday (Or Silent Night, for that matter)? Right, stick to humming Happy Birthday compared to a new song or humming random sounds. The reason is to ignore the entire process and permit it to go on automatic.

You do not have to analyze the humming rhythm of Happy Birthday; it has its own neural network in your brain through repetition since you were a little kid.

1. Sit at your computer: eyes open, now start humming.
2. Discover you can hum to Happy Birthday while reading
text and even when typing on your word processor.
3. Do one-minute of conscious humming and stop.
4. Put an intentional SMILE on your face and hum H.B. for
another one-minute. It doubles the humming effectiveness.
5. Roll in a circular pattern in your seat and hum H.B. for
just one-minute. Move left-to-right in a circular orbit.

Can you hum with your eyes closed? And chew Wrigley’s gum and walk at the same
time? Sure you can. When you hum with your eyes closed you begin to daydream and get drowsy. Is that bad?

Humming for even a couple of minutes switches your brainwave rhythms from
your left-brain activities to your right-hemisphere automatic functions. You go from
Beta to Alpha and even to Theta as you hum and daydream.

It appears that in Theta (4-7 Hz) cycles per second, your brain is better at learning,
memory and speed reading. It consolidates into long-term memory what you have
previously learned.

When Homo sapiens read they hear the words in their brain through their larynx
(voice box). We hear each and every word pronounced and it slows us down to a
snail crawling. Ready?

Humming while you read activates your Peripheral Vision and inhibits your foveal (central, narrow) vision. You visually take in more letters and words with each eye-fixation with Peripheral vs. Central vision. You can save up to two hours daily in reading time by Humming while you read articles, reports and books.

Our research with students and executives indicates humming to Happy Birthday creates peak performances of learning and analysis. Your brain goes into your zone, also called In-The-Flow. You may discover how to ace exams and produce better presentations. Oh yeah, humming is a low sound only you should hear.

Remember you do not have to concentrate or pay conscious attention to humming to the tune of Happy Birthday. H.B. is flying on autopilot and appears instantly when you think of it using your will power (volition). It is like reaching your hand out to grab an apple. Thinking alone creates the desired behavior.

Make-believe you are preparing for an interview, presentation or a test. Find a corner and take 1-2 minutes humming with a smile on your face. Our results based on graduates from our workshops is relaxation and loss of stress.

Your self-confidence expands based on homeostasis (equilibrium); the familiar tune creates mental and physical harmony. The Law of Association of the tune you hum and past experiences of joy and happiness, produces positive thinking and positive behaviors in the present.

Happy Birthday is the tune everyone carries in his or her long-term memory for instant activation. No one ever says, How does H.B. go again? You get instant replay, right? Our brain likes the familiar and routine because it feels comfortable.

Do a Mind Experiment, be your own scientist and discover the power of humming. A. Einstein recommended Mind Experiments for personal creativity. You decide.

There are so many reasons to test and discover the power of intentional conscious humming. We recommend it to all our students for improved health and learning.
You might want to invest five-minutes daily and discover it for yourself.”

For more on humming and its benefits go here.

Another fun version of humming to try was referenced earlier in my May 2010 newsletter—“Bumble-Bee Breathing”.  Since I haven’t archived all of my old newsletters onto my new Website, I’ll copy it here for ease of reference:

“Bumble-Bee breathing” is a vocal meditation that resembles the buzzing of a bee. It balances the throat chakra as well as improves your concentration, memory and confidence. It also helps banish feelings of self doubt. Practicing this breath is said to bring “indescribable joy” in your heart. (Hatha Yoga Pradipika, 2.68). It is perfect for working with both the throat and heart chakra.

This breathwork can be done in a seated position, or sitting in a kneeling position with your buttocks on your heels. Use your index fingers to plug your ears. Inhale through the nose and exhale humming softly. Repeat as many times as desired being aware of the vibration in the throat, mouth, cheeks, lips, sinus and forehead. Notice how the humming helps regulate your breath and lengthen your exhalation making the exhalation more complete. It is recommended for singers, teachers, public speaking, as well as for helping with throat problems.

Finally, you might try chanting as another alternative to releasing blockages in your throat region. Mantras are believed to contain a vibrational power.  Chanting ‘OM’ is said to have “positive effects on the nervous system, to strengthen the respiratory system and to energize every part of the body.  Chanting its three syllables (A-U-M or “Aaah, Ou, Mmmmm”) sets up rebalancing vibrations in your body while awakening latent psychic and mental powers.”  Chakra Meditation by Swami Saradananda.  See my “Healthy News” section below for the possible physiological benefits of chanting.

Other ways to “use your voice” of expression might be to practice standing up for yourself in one area of your life that has been neglected. See, it’s not just about vocal chords.  And “standing up for yourself” doesn’t have to mean a conflict with anyone.  It’s about expression.  Expression isn’t wrong. And when you add your will power (solar plexus chakra) to enabling that expression, you’ve got a winning combination!

So how can you express yourself more, if even subtly, in 2011?  Maybe you just need to carve out some time to do something special for yourself like take 15 minutes a day to do yoga, meditate, read, or breathe. I can’t remember where I read it, but I’ve quoted it in my yoga class:  “The inside you needs the outside you to take care of you.”  That is what standing up for yourself means.  Taking care of what the inner you craves is healthy—is necessary for health. “Taking care of your emotional health and well-being can make your RealAge up to 16 years younger. http://www.realage.com/

This might be a new motivation for your New Year’s “goal” or “resolution”—one that is nurturing vs. demeaning.  Perhaps choose another descriptor for your “resolution” and call it an “intention”.  Make your motivation be an intention to improve your well-being vs. a resolution to lose weight or diet. Your chances for successful change and growth can depend upon your motivation for change.

Rather than have a goal that revolves around deprivation and neglect, why not choose to approach it with self-compassion?  There’s a new book out called The Self-Compassion Diet by Jean Fain, LICSW, MSW.  Her diet focuses on kindness, not criticism:  “..when you treat yourself with self-compassion, when you treat yourself like a friend or a loved one with love and kindness, you’re more apt to eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full; rest when you’re tired and move when you feel energized; and when you do that, you lose weight naturally.” http://articles.mcall.com/2011-01-10/health/mc-weight-loss-20110110_1_weight-loss-plans-weight-loss-newest-weight-loss

Is there something you’ve always wanted to do or try but never taken the time to do it because you just aren’t on your list of priorities?  Or maybe it’s easier to view this as simply writing down three things you feel are missing from your life and commit to doing them for yourself. Perhaps that 15 minutes a day can be dedicated towards THAT. Express yourself!

This is where the throat chakra of expression and the solar plexus chakra of will power meet.  Use the power of your will to do what is yours to express. We all have time for a small 15-minute step per day.  There’s only one of you.  The world needs your expression to complete itself.

Without your expression, there’s a hole in the world, a void.  To quote Clarence on It’s a Wonderful Life: “Strange, isn’t it? Each man’s life touches so many other lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole, doesn’t he?”

When you don’t express what’s inside of you, it’s like you aren’t around. Don’t let your personal expression go unexpressed. Don’t let your song go unsung.  Let it out!  “If you do not bring forth what is inside of you, what is inside of you will destroy you.”–The Gnostic Gospel of St. Thomas.

Remember to choose something you really want to do or try.  As obvious as it sounds, if you aren’t excited about it, you already have two strikes against you. As mentioned earlier, if you’ve been affirming something in particular, but feeling its opposite as you affirm, you will manifest the feeling.

When I decided to teach yoga full time and quit my “normal” full time job, it was after many years of something inside of me wanting to get out.  It was after many years of knowing that what I was doing with my days was not what I was meant to do.  I knew that any time I practiced yoga, taught yoga, read about yoga, or even saw the word “yoga”, I got excited.  So I chose to put more yoga into my life.

Doing what you love is empowering and even health-enhancing.  Even picking something as simple as adding more time to listen to your favorite music, plant more flowers, cook more homemade meals—if that’s what trips your trigger—will make you feel loved and cared about.  (I love music in my life.  It can lift me out of a bad mood instantly.  Try this new unreleased song.  Here’s the refrain:

May the Grace of God be with you always, in your heart
May you know the truth inside you from the start
May you find the strength to know that you are a
Part of something beautiful…

 

 

Adding more time to listen to music that uplifts you—priceless.  At the very least you’ll be happier and more content, but you never know.  Putting more of what you love into your life may lead you to something bigger.  Remember the “Self-Compassion” diet book referenced above?  Your body, and therefore your life, responds kindly to acts of self-compassion—another reference to my quote from earlier—“The inside you needs the outside you to take care of you.”

“According to a new study by a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill psychologist and colleagues, people who seed their life with frequent moments of positive emotions increase their resilience against challenges….As with changing one’s diet or other lifestyle areas, it’s simpler and more effective to add what you want more of (whether it’s recognition of positive events in your life, or a diet richer in fruits and vegetables) than to focus on ‘giving up’ things that are hard to relinquish (from moods to foods).“  http://stress.about.com/b/2009/08/24/positive-emotions-and-resilience.htm?nl=1

I still have that drive to continue finding the exact expression of my life.  We all have that drive to continually adjust our course toward that which is more fulfilling—towards that which expresses us best. But it won’t be found without your voice, and it won’t be found without your will power.

Not sure what your expression should be?  Try meditating for those 15 minutes a day. Just taking time to be present, breathe, and not do another thing can let your most important dreams or callings rise to the surface.  How can the Universe speak to you if your mind is cluttered with so much else?

There’s a reason that the time between sleep and awake, when your mind is naturally unhindered by the outside world, is when your subconscious is most open insight.  This stage of sleep and meditation’s effects on your brain has something in common.  There’s a reason they tell you to “sleep on it” when facing a decision. What is an intention if not a decision to do something?

To quote my March 2010 newsletter:  Everyone has the ability to listen to their inner voice. Many cultures have considered the “between times”—the time between sleep and awake, dawn and dusk, or any time that is neither one nor the other—“times of greatest inspiration and power” when “You will find yourself more effective in all of your activities.” Animal Speak, Ted Andrews. If that doesn’t hit home for you, remember Albert Einstein developed his theory of relativity through a dream. Enough said.

There are five stages of sleep.  Stage one can be considered a transition period between wakefulness and sleep. In Stage one, the brain produces high amplitude theta waves, which are very slow brain waves. http://psychology.about.com/od/statesofconsciousness/a/SleepStages.htm

How does that relate to meditation?  “During meditation, theta waves were most abundant in the frontal and middle parts of the brain.

‘These types of waves likely originate from a relaxed attention that monitors our inner experiences. Here lies a significant difference between meditation and relaxing without any specific technique,’ emphasizes Lagopoulos.

Previous studies have shown that theta waves indicate deep relaxation and occur more frequently in highly experienced meditation practitioners.” http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100319210631.htm

As my March 2010 newsletter highlighted, you can use the time between sleep and awake to focus on your intentions and the direction you should take.  Or you can use the power of meditation to do that and so much more. Wondering if meditation can really help?  Try it.  At the very least you’ll be less stressed and able to handle the negative effects of life better.

Please refer to the archives for my past “Meditations to Go” for ideas on how to get started adding meditation into your life.  It doesn’t have to be complicated.  Just breathe. It doesn’t even have to be a sitting meditation. Nature walks can be very meditative too. (See my August 2010 newsletter for a great reference to a “Silent Walk” in nature by one of my favorite authors, Ted Andrews.)

Remember, life gets easier and more exhilarating when you are excited about it.  Use your will power and express your excitement in 2011!

Breathwork and Visualization:

You can combine both the throat chakra and the solar plexus chakra in the following Three-Part breath.  If you incorporate “Ocean breath—or Ujjaayi breath” as you breathe, you’ll be hearing the sound of your breath in your throat chakra area.  As you fill up the full capacity of your lungs breathing deep into your belly, you are filling up the solar plexus chakra area.  Visualize both chakras connecting with each breath:  As you breath in, picture a sky blue energy ball circulating in the throat chakra area and continuing down your throat, turning into a green heart chakra energy ball in your chest and then into a bright yellow solar plexus chakra energy ball as it raises your belly at the end of your inhalation.  As you exhale out, send the energy down your body into the ground like roots of a tree grounding you into the present and releasing stress along the way.

Once you feel centered, end with a visualization of yourself doing your 15-minute daily exercise toward something you’ve always wanted to do or try. Make it as vivid and real as you can.  Involve all the senses—sight, sound, taste, touch.  Notice all the details.  Put yourself into your visualization and see yourself living it.  Remember it’s the feeling that manifests.  So feel yourself living it.  Use the power of your will to express yourself in 2011.

Three-Part Breath is also known as the “complete breath”.  It is both detoxifying and energizing. Done slowly and evenly, it will center you and produce a sense of peace. We typically only use the top part of our lungs.  Three-Part Breath gets to the lower part of the lungs, using our lung’s full capacity from top to bottom—i.e., the “complete breath”.

Start by breathing deeply into the lower abdominal area, continuing to inhale filling the entire torso with breath on up to the upper collar bone area—belly to ribs to chest.  Then release the breath in reverse order—chest, ribs, belly—squeezing your abdomen to remove as much old air as possible.  This “squeezing out the old air” facilitates an even deeper inhale on the next inhalation.   It’s also a great time to visualize “letting go” of stressors on the exhale, and “welcoming in” all that life has to offer on the inhale.

Affirmations:

  • I live in my truth, I communicate my truth, I am truth.
  • I develop will each time I meet a life challenge.
  • I express my truth quietly and clearly and I am heard.
  • My willpower is aligned with my spiritual purpose in life.
  • I express my truth as creatively as possible.
  • I learn to listen to myself and trust my inner voice.
  • I express love and goodness each time I speak.
  • My Spirit rests in peace and silence.
  • I trust the whisper of angels’ voices as I sit in silence.
  • I love and respect myself at all times.
  • I am worthy because I exist.
  • I am worthy of the life I say I want.
  • I am confident in my ability to make my life work.
  • I choose the power of life.
  • I choose health, healing, and happiness.
  • I choose the best for myself.
  • There are no failures.  I learn from everything I do.
  • I believe that everything is for my highest good and greatest joy.
  • I release judgment and let my life flow.
  • It is now right for me to express the best of who I am now.

Sources:

The Book of Chakras, Ambika Wauters.

http://www.1lovespirit.com/affirmations-chakras.html

Diet and the Throat and Solar Plexus Chakras: Solar plexus chakra is related to the “fire element”. To increase this energy, think hot, spicy foods and hot teas. Avoid cold drinks.

A possible diet for the throat chakra would be light foods such as grapes, salads, herbs, and plain yogurt with a teaspoon of honey for the throat. Slippery elm in tea or lozenge form is a treat for the throat as well. “The throat chakra is associated with the thyroid gland which requires iodine, tyrosine (an amino acid), zinc, vitamin A, vitamin E, copper, selenium, and the omega-3 fatty acid and oleic acid. Adding sea vegetables to your diet can be helpful for supplying some of the ingredients listed above.”

Source:  Chakra Balancing by Anodea Judith.

Aromatherapy and the Throat and Solar Plexus Chakras:

Throat Chakra scents:Bergamot helps you to calmly express truths that arise as your heart chakra opens.  Chamomile allows you to voice truth without anger or resentment.  Eucalyptus helps if you feel ‘frozen’; aids spontaneous expression.  Sandalwood motivates your creative energies at your throat chakra, helping you to come up with fresh solutions; encourages wider vision.  Tea Tree shifts throat chakra energy; helps you to reach your potential.  Peppermint stimulates you to lead a more ethical life.”  Chakra Meditation by Swami Saradananda.

Solar Plexus scents:  “Chamomile eases expectations and tension that can build at your solar plexus as a result of frustration; promotes a “sunny” disposition.  Bergamot helps you to release stagnant energy, Juniper soothes if you feel uncomfortable or frightened, Fennel is a spiritual shield, Peppermint brings the Solar Plexus energy into balance, calms excessive pride and the inferiority it can mask, enables transition and transformation.”  Chakra Meditation by Swami Saradananda.

Notice that Chamomile, Bergamot and Peppermint are common to both chakras.  Perhaps combining them would be a fun experiment?

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.

Gem therapy and the Throat and Solar Plexus Chakras: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Throat Chakra gems are: Throat chakra stones include all the blue stones: sapphire, lapis lazuli, blue topaz, aquamarine, turquoise, chrysocolla and sodalite, among others.

Some Solar Plexus Chakra gems are: Green Jade, Blue Sapphire, Aventurine Quartz, Topaz, Yellow Citrine, and Ruby, among others.

Blue sapphire is on both lists.  Sapphire stones are thought to be able to maintain the hope needed in order that our deepest desires and dreams will be fulfilled one day.  http://www.sunnyray.org/Sapphire-properties-and-meaning.htm

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Throat and Solar Plexus Chakras: As mentioned earlier, all yoga poses work each of the seven major chakras with specific ones addressing specific chakras.

Poses to strengthen the Solar Plexus Chakra: Stomach crunches—a strong core contributes to a sense of will power and purpose—Belly rolls, Plank pose, and poses with spinal twists.

Poses to strengthen the Throat Chakra: Neck stretches, Lion Pose, Legs up the wall pose.  Also Ujjayi breath helps strengthen the throat chakra.  My favorite throat chakra pose is supported fish pose using blocks. Others would be shoulderstand, cow pose and bridge pose.

10
November

Grounding and the Root Chakra

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Grounding and the Root Chakra Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras. The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson: There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system. Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body. Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine. Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there. Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus. In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

This month, since we are headed into the holiday season and cooler weather, my favorite chakra is the first one, located at what is called the “Root Center” – the base of the spine or tailbone/coccyx. It is associated with the Coccygeal Plexus nerve bundle and with grounding. It vibrates to the color red.

We all need grounding this time of year. Instinctively I think we all know it too.  Trying to fit so much extra activity into your normal schedule takes its toll—tension, stress, lack of energy and balance.  Lack of balance is another way to say we aren’t grounded.  Too much activity and not enough stillness is a recipe for stress.  Yet, I don’t think we take the time to do what we need when we need it most because we don’t feel we have the time.  It’s a vicious cycle, isn’t it?

The more we don’t ground when we need to, the more ungrounded we feel, and the more we need to ground.  This month’s “Meditation to go” and “Hand Mudra” sections offer suggestions for grounding and creating a balance of energy. Those new to the concept of grounding may be wondering just what it is I’m talking about.

Wondering if you need to work on your Root Chakra?  Have you ever felt like you are spinning out of control, you can’t focus, or you have too much to do and not enough time to do it in?  Maybe important things fall through the cracks and you feel overwhelmed.  Maybe you are chronically tired and lacking in energy.  Or perhaps you worry about the future and meeting your obligations.  Maybe you are nervous, and can’t figure out why. This is a common one for me.  That is the opposite of grounding.  I can relate to Beyoncé’s quote:  “I get nervous when I don’t get nervous.”

Sometimes I just like to acknowledge “nervous” like an old friend—calling it “out” so to speak.  “Hi.  There you are again.  You’re baaaack!”  It’s as though by making it seem common place, I can gain a little control.  When you figure out ways to gain control of your emotions, you are on the way to being grounded—and having a strong Root Chakra.  When you take the time to start your day with a grounding exercise of your choice, your whole day will go better.

I met a wonderful life skill’s advisor, soul mentor and coach earlier this year, Julie Lyden.  I am now on her email list, http://movingbeyondyourself.com/?page_id=3.  I am always amazed at the synchronicity of the Universe.  The email from her I just received says:  “Welcome to November!!!  The month of Remembering. As I was being with what was wanted to support others in this month, I kept hearing “We do know” it just may not seem familiar!  So what I want to offer this month is experiences that will support you in remembering ‘You Do KNOW’”.

Her message is what I’m getting at.  We all know what we need to feel grounded.  We all know that when we come from a place of “groundedness”, we feel more secure, safe, centered, and at peace.  This is where it all starts.  Without feeling grounded, all the rest is just that much harder.

So while you may feel you don’t have time to add a grounding exercise to your daily routine, I would contend that you don’t have the time not to.  Time expands when you are grounded.  You know the old saying—it’s not the stressor, it’s your attitude toward the stressor that creates the stress.  When you’re grounded, things bother you less.  Going back to Julie Lyden’s comment above—you do know that.

This section contains some of my favorite ways to ground.  “You do know” your own.  Without even considering it “grounding”, I’ll bet you know what activity always makes you feel at peace, you just never labeled it as “grounding”.

Yoga is my go-to method for grounding. Yes, you’d expect me to say that wouldn’t you?  We start each Yoga class by being present in the moment.  We come to Yoga for ourselves—as a gift to ourselves.  My YogaFit® training encourages “breathing, feeling, listening to the body, letting go of judgment, competition, expectations—just being present”.  Don’t you feel more grounded just reading that affirmation?

Yoga relieves back pain, panic attacks, headaches, allergies, PMS, anxiety, arthritis, constipation, high blood pressure, stress, among other thing—as you have read in both my newsletters and my Facebook page:  http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/Minneapolis-MN/Better-Day-Yoga-LLC/495055625435.  So do more Yoga!

Even a daily ten-minute practice is a start.  Yoga Heals Your Back by Rita Trieger has several 10-minute routines you can try that end back and neck pain.  I sometimes use the “Morning Stretch” sequence as part of my warm up in class for the longer 75-minute classes I teach. And for the ultimate grounding visualization, I cue the visualization of sending roots deep down into the earth from your feet—just like the roots of a tree—while standing in Mountain Pose.  (See the “Meditation to Go” above for the grounding breath.)

Ten minutes of mindfully practiced poses at the beginning of your day can bring a day’s worth of centeredness and peace—even as simple as sending roots down into the earth as you step out of bed. Then perhaps add the “gratefulness exercise” to your walk from Rhonda Byrnes book, The Secret, by saying “Thank You” with each step you take out your bedroom door to the bathroom.

Extend your “thank you” walk outdoors and turn it into a walking meditation.  I’ve mentioned in previous newsletters that Thich Nhat Hanh’s book written along with Nguyen Anh Huong, called Walking Meditation, is an excellent resource.

No time for a walk?  Try simply touching your bare feet to the earth and feel Mother Nature’s energy.  Yes, I know us Minnesotans won’t be up for this practice in the dead of Winter…but even putting your bare hands on a snowball can be grounding; and just might add to your laughter quotient for the day when you participate in a fun toss towards your nearest loved one.

My August newsletter talked about the healing aspects of trees.  What childhood or adult memory holds your favorite tree?  Touching your bare hands to your favorite tree is another way to connect with Mother Nature and feel her energy.  It’s also very grounding.  Why not try connecting with your favorite tree and use the grounding breath tree visualization in the Meditation to Go section above—whether it’s on your next walk, or the one in your yard if you don’t have time for a walk that day.  You can give your tree an all out hug, or simply place your hands to the tree with intention.  No trees nearby?  Choose your favorite plant. Find a way to connect with Mother Nature.  Let Mother Nature nurture.

Planning for some star-gazing complete with winter coat and blanket can ward off the chills and also connect you to nature reminding you that the stars are always there for you as they were for your ancestors.  The simple act of looking up to the sky and experiencing nature’s light show will leave you feeling exhilarated—and grounded!  The next meteor showers are November 17th and December 13thhttp://stardate.org/nightsky/meteors.

I’ve recently started a more formal meditation practice complete with mantra as part of a second 200-hour yoga teacher training program I’m participating in http://www.terileigh.com/IATTschedule.html.  There’s something to be said for building the energy of a goal or practice by doing it every day. This is a basic principle of manifesting anything you want in life.  You begin to look forward to it because it becomes a ritual.  The ritual takes on a life of its own; and soon, just like Pavlov’s dog, that time of day and location of your chosen spot becomes the time and place your body naturally prepares for your activity of choice.  They say it takes 28 days to create a habit.  Why not challenge yourself to add a healthy habit to your life for 28 days?  Oh, and mantras can be your favorite prayer, word, phrase, etc.  It doesn’t have to be Sanskrit!  My November 3rd Facebook entry highlighted the mantra “blue skies”.  Try it!

I still like to read from my favorite affirmation books every morning.  Here are some books I pick and choose from depending on my mood and time available—some days it’s only a quick affirmation and I’m out the door:

365 Yoga Daily meditations by Julie Rappaport

A Year of Living Your Yoga, Daily Practices to Shape Your Life, by Judith Hanson Lasater, PhD, PT.

Yoga in Every Moment, Contemplations of a Yogi in the Midst of Life, by Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati

Meditations from the Mat, Daily Reflections on the Path of Yoga, by Rolf Gates and Kathryn Kenison

Yoga Gems, A Treasury of Practical and Spiritual Wisdom from Ancient and Modern Masters, Edited by Georg Feuerstein

Science of Mind Magazine, A Guide for Spiritual Living

Daily Guidance from Your Angels, 365 Angelic Messages to Soothe, Heal, and Open Your Heart, by Doreen Virtue, PhD

Archangels & Ascended Masters, A Guide to Working and Healing with Divinities and Deities, by Doreen Virtue, PhD

The Oracle Within, by Dick Sutphen

The Invisible Force, by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

You Can Heal Your Life, by Louise L. Hay

My books may not appeal to you. So find your own.  Believe it or not, the list above is not complete.  I love books, and have them scattered throughout the house for easy reading.

If time permits, I also do my own card reading using one of the various decks of cards I highlight in my newsletters. The random readings from the books and cards are my way of opening up to whatever message the Universe might have for me that day.  It makes me feel watched and cared for like I’m in good company, surrounded by family—Grounded.

Journaling without a purpose can empty the mind of extraneous thoughts allowing you to ground into the present moment.  Julia Cameron’s, The Artist’s Way, is an excellent resource for this type of writing to clear the mind. There’s an online site you can go to if journaling of this kind appeals to you:  http://www.theartistsway.com/tools/the-basic-tools?f90a4dac66e2ce578e9b972a5d87c8bc=10593a33f0917e66691dfbe4e8d660d0.

In my June newsletter, I mentioned how a practice from Ayurveda (sister science to Yoga) can be a very simple, but very grounding ritual.  One of the easy treatments we can do every day to de-stress is to treat yourself to a foot rub with a natural oil at the end of the day—perhaps one that balances your dosha. Try it. Tell me you don’t feel loved and cared about after giving yourself a foot massage. I’ve been making it a point to do it daily since my May Ayurveda class.  It helps me sleep better too.  Don’t know what your dosha is?  I repeat here from my June newsletter archive, for ease of reference:

Here are a few fun quizzes to help you zero in on what your dominant dosha might be or which dosha might be out of balance. Caution! Ayurveda is like eating potato chips…you can’t stop with just one piece! You’ll want to consume all you can! Remember, you have all three doshas in you so you’ll find attributes of each:
http://www.whatsyourdosha.com/
http://www.holisticonline.com/w_ayurveda-dvikruti1.htm
http://www.yogajournal.com/health/498
http://www.yogajournal.com/health/1517?utm_source=DailyInsight&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_content=b&utm_campaign=DI_2009-12-06#doc

Let’s regroup here.  What do all of the above have in common?  Being mindful about whatever it is you are doing at the moment. That is being present in the moment.  That is the key to grounding.  Anything that makes you feel loved and cared about is grounding, and strengthens your Root Chakra.  Being mindful lets your body know that you love and care for yourself.

So if you still don’t feel you have time to carve out something new, take something you do every day and do it more mindfully. Even brushing your teeth can become a ritual if you do it while focusing on all sensations as you brush.

I referenced John Kabat-Zinn’s “eating meditation” in my April newsletter, and paraphrase it here.  It was designed to remove the idea those of us have that meditation is somehow unusual, mystical or out of the ordinary.  We all eat every day.  Even those of us who feel we have no minutes to spare must eat!  Do it mindfully, as in the eating meditation:

Bring your attention to observing your food “as if you’ve never seen the food before”. Feel the texture of the food if it’s a finger food; roll it around in your fingers. Notice the color and the innuendos of its surface. Notice any thoughts you have about the food or food in general. Do you like what you’re about to eat? Dislike it? Note that. Smell your food. Finally bring one bite mindfully to the mouth—with awareness. Be aware of the movement of the hand to mouth. Be aware of how you position it to your mouth. How it feels on your lips, your tongue. Then chew it s-l-o-w-l-y. Experience the actual taste of the food in your mouth. Notice when you are ready to swallow being aware of that impulse too. Too often we swallow without thinking perhaps swallowing too soon. Now even imagine that your body is one mouthful heavier.

As my meditation in April mentioned, if we ate this way all of the time, we’d eat less but enjoy more what we ate.  Adding a prayer of thanks before your meal is another way to ground yourself. It can be a simple acknowledgement of all that went into bringing the food before you.

Taking a few minutes to connect with someone you love—be it human or animal—can be very grounding. I know from experience that when I’m the most stressed, just feeling my husband’s arms around me provides the most nurturing, grounding experience.  It’s immediate.

Each month in the Chakra section I highlight the gems associated with the Chakra we are highlighting.  Holding a Root Chakra gem will connect you to the grounding earth energies contained within the stone.  See the gem section below for some good ones to try slipping into your pocket or placing on your desk to use as your grounding stone for the day.  Touch the stones throughout the day, similar to the old time “worry stones”.

You can also wear your favorite Root Chakra gem within a favorite piece of jewelry.  Wearing jewelry can be an emotionally grounding practice.  Not only does your favorite piece of jewelry hold precious memories by association, but if it contains a Root Chakra gem, all the better!

What peace-provoking practice can you fit into your daily realm? Promise yourself ten minutes a day to strengthen your Root Chakra and ground.  Ground yourself with your favorite peaceful practice, and watch your life become filled with more of what makes you happy because you’ll approach life with more happiness.

Breathwork and Visualization:

Find a comfortable position, preferably with your back straight.  Close your eyes, and begin breathing deeply through your nose without separation between inhalation and exhalation.  Feel yourself relaxing.  Pay attention to your breathing for the first few minutes allowing it to get deeper and more rhythmic with each breath.  Next, bring your attention to your first chakra at the base of your spine.  Then begin breathing in and out from your first chakra.

Feel as though the breath doesn’t stop at the bottom of your lungs on the inhalation but goes all the way down to the base of your spine.  Again, without separation between inhalation and exhalation, breathe out naturally through your nose.  On each exhalation feel as if the energy at the base of your spine is growing stronger.  Visualize the energy there as a ball of fiery, red energy.  Continue both experiencing and visualizing the energy growing brighter for two or three minutes.  Let your consciousness, which for most people is centered around the shoulders and neck, move downward until it reaches the base of the spine and becomes centered in the ball of energy.  Become the ball of energy and feel yourself being drawn downward into the Earth.  As this happens, pay attention to how you feel physically, emotionally, and mentally.

Source:  Chakra Therapy For Personal Growth and Healing, by Keith Sherwood.

Affirmations:

 

  • I am safe, secure, centered, and at peace
  • I move into my greater good
  • I love and approve of myself
  • Life supports and loves me
  • I trust the process of life
  • All I need is always taken care of
  • I am safe
  • I am strong
  • I am confident
  • I am comfortable with change and growth.
  • My good is everywhere and I am safe
  • I relax completely for I now know I am safe
  • I trust Life and I trust myself
  • I am totally safe in the Universe
  • I am at peace everywhere
  • I am safe and secure and understood
  • I belong wherever I am
  • I bless my future and no that it is safe and wonderful
  • I affirm my right to the life I know I want
  • I accept myself as I am
  • I am grateful for the experiences of my life
  • I am sustained and nourished by nature


Sources:

The Book of Chakras, Ambika Wauters.

A Handbook of Chakra Healing, Spiritual Practice for Health, Harmony and Inner Peace, Kalashatra Govinda.

Power Thoughts, 365 Daily Affirmations, Louise L. Hay.

 

Diet and the Root Chakra: Eating in general energizes the base chakra.  I’ve compared the chakra system to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.  You have to take care of your physiological needs before anything else!  “Eating especially high protein foods energizes the base (root) chakra.  Taking a good mineral supplement may also help.  A shortage of zinc is one of the commonest causes of ‘spaciness’ and lack of mental focus.”  Healing with Crystals and Chakra Energies, by Sue and Simon Lilly.

Eating root vegetables like beets, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, turnips, yams, etc., is also very grounding. Beans, legumes, nuts, tofu and soy products are also grounding, comfort foods as are seeds like pine nuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds.

Aromatherapy and the Root Chakra: Scents can also be very grounding. I’m sure you all have your favorite scent from childhood. So that may be a good place to start. Some possible grounding scents to try: Sandalwood, patchouli, pine, cedar, balsam fir or frankincense.  There’s also the scent that balances your dosha—refer to the dosha references earlier!

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.

Gem therapy and the Root Chakra:  Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some Root Chakra gems are:  Grounding stones to consider include: Hematite, smokey quartz, garnet, and black tourmaline, black onyx, fire opal, kunzite, red jasper, among others.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Root Chakra:

All yoga poses are essentially grounding.  Warrior poses are all very grounding—see Warrior III above.  Warrior I and Warrior II were in my two preceding newsletters.  Other grounding poses are:

Forward bend “establishes the link between the root and crown chakras that runs the length of the spine.  This is one of the most important chakra connections and it promotes a strong flow of energy.” Chakra Energy Plan, by Anna Selby.  Mountain pose (mentioned above with the tree root visualization), chair pose, knees to chest pose, easy-seated pose or lotus pose, seated cat/cow pose, child’s pose, and final relaxation pose, among others.

Please refer to the archives of November 2009, April and August newsletters for more on the Root Chakra.  I’ll be working on archiving the old newsletters into my new Website as fast as I can!  This newsletter is the inaugural newsletter for my new Website!  Thanks for your patience!

28
October

October Chakrascope

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers, Newsletter
Comments Off on October Chakrascope Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras. The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson: There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system. Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body. Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine. Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there. Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus. In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

October is surrounded with shades of orange (although I can’t get my mind off the white squirrel in my yard!)—jack-o-lanterns smiling at us, trees turning beautiful hues, apples ripening on the vine. Many of us choose to celebrate Halloween as a light-hearted, fun time for costumes and trick or treating. So we can have some fun “trying on” a different persona. This takes the “just supposing” concept introduced in my opening section a little further! Let’s be creative! That’s the second chakra-the Sacral Chakra. Its color is orange and it is the seat of our creativity and our passions. It focuses on the element of water-of flow. The Sacral Chakra is about sweetening life by opening to pleasure. Here’s some ways to open to the pleasures of the season!

Was there a favorite costume character from your childhood Halloweens, or perhaps as an adult? (Let’s keep it clean!) What persona were you trying to create and why? Explore why you considered that one your favorite. Let’s do some Halloween costume analogy to see how you used your creativity (Sacral chakra) to exemplify a character.

It may be that you enjoyed the reaction from others, or maybe it had a deeper meaning for you. Were you looking for the power of being that character? Do you like to be a leader in your everyday life? If so, are you? Was that persona a role model for you?

Perhaps you enjoyed the laughs your costume brought. Do you like stand-up comedy? Do you use humor enough in your everyday life to satisfy your creative soul? If not, can you think of ways to add more humor into your life?

Perhaps it was the pride you took in the artistic effort that went into the costume. How do you let your artistic talents out to play now that you’re all grown up?

Maybe it was just the act of letting go of reality for a bit and having some outright fun. I think most of us could use more play in our life. How can you add some playtime back in?

I’ve read that whether you like or dislike someone it’s because you recognize the same qualities within yourself. I’ve tried to keep that in mind whenever I get to judging someone because it usually means any irritation I have is the seed of something in me as well. It’s humbled me more than a few times.

Posing the above questions to myself, a gypsy costume—my favorite costume for Halloween when I was younger-was my favorite because to me gypsies had a handle on all things magic. They could tell the future, do fortune-telling, dress in those flamboyant scarves, and where some big-time bling. That observation makes me smile. I still enjoy all things magical, own way to many scarves, and prefer big honking costume jewelry rings to the more expensive gemstones. As for telling the future, well I’ve done my share of asking the Universe for signs, as you well know.

(I have to mention, my Thursday evening yoga class is in Anoka, MN, the “Halloween Capital of the World”. http://anokahalloween.com/, in a wonderful gift shop filled with a gift for everyone on your list, Krista Artista Gallery, http://www.kristaartistagallery.com/. Stop in and “rediscover Anoka”! http://www.rediscoveranoka.com/ .)

Expressing our creativity is Sacral Chakra energy in action. While I don’t go trick or treating any more, I do answer the door with style. An old retail jewelry customer of mine gave me a white witch’s hat she bought for her dress shop as Halloween décor. She knew she wouldn’t sell it in her dress shop. She told me that she knew I was one of the few people open to being silly enough to enjoy it. I justified being a witch with the thought that I’m a good witch, just like on the Wizard of Oz, and the hat has a white owl on it, for wisdom. So that’s not scary, right?

The hat replaced the Mardi Gras mask I’d used prior, and I’ve added a child’s magical ringing wand. My husband and I still use dragon hand puppets from Manhattan Toy (a previous sales job I had), and flashlights under our chins as the trick or treaters approach. Outside we play spooky music from Martha Stewart’s collection. http://www.amazon.com/Living-Spooky-Sounds-Martha-Stewart/dp/B00004WJ6F. I swear we have more fun than most of the visitors! We’ve created this fun ritual to enjoy our creative expression marking the season. Create some fun of your own! That’s Sacral Chakra energy and going with the flow of the season!

We have a favorite apple farm, as I’m sure many of you do. Ours is Minnetonka Orchards in Minnetrista: http://www.minnetonkaorchards.com/. I love the magic they create there. You can pick your own apples, or buy them in their wonderful gift shop along with hot apple cider, apple donuts, and apple brats. My mouth is watering. The musical entertainment is always family-oriented, and begs you to dance in their lawn. They have hay rides, walking trails, a corn maze, petting zoos, bonfires, face-painting, and pumpkins too! Our annual trip there has become our autumn-welcoming ritual. It is the harbinger of the “horn of plenty” about to come with all the autumn and winter holidays. It creates a festival type atmosphere where you can let your inner child out to play along with all the other children there. This is our way of opening to the pleasures of the season. We took my mother-in-law on a hay ride here once about four years ago. At the time, she was in her early 80s and had a blast! So you’re never too old to experience all the pleasures of an apple orchard! You just have to be open to it! Being open to the pleasures of life-that’s strong Sacral Chakra energy!

When was the last time you went out for an autumn drive just to see the leaves changing color? Leave your electronics behind and go witness nature’s own full-color extravaganza! This is true surrender to the season. Going for a long walk in your favorite woods revitalizes your creative juices. Breathe the crisp, fresh air, and take in some color. Nature is begging you to come outdoors this time of year and view her blanket of colors. Take a cue from nature and find ways to add color to your life. Take time to celebrate whatever season of life you are in with pizzazz. If nature can recreate herself by adding a little color, why not you too? We don’t consider the leaves as old and wrinkled. We see the beauty in them and consider them as a gift. How can you add a little color into your life?

For walking trails in the Minneapolis area, try http://www.trails.com/city-trails.aspx?keyword=Minneapolis&state=MN. Wondering where the best leaf viewing is? Try http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/fall_colors/index.html. For a state-by-state listing of farms with pumpkin patches, corn mazes, hayrides and other autumn activities: www.pumpkinpatchesandmore.org/index.php

So where to begin? How do you choose your best fun activity? Recapping the “luck” theme from my opening article, I connected luck to the creativity aspect of the Sacral Chakra using Frank Capra’s quote, “A hunch is creativity trying to tell you something.” (Remember principle two above for creating your own luck was “listening to lucky hunches”.) Using your gut feeling as to which family ritual for autumn is right for you is using your Sacral Chakra energy. Repeating the sentiment in my opener, luck is really intuiting the opportunity within any potential activity you are considering. So have at it and listen to our gut!

Do you wonder what all the fuss is about this time of year? How can you create your own magical autumn? What fun, family rituals can you put into place? Perhaps a visit to your favorite apple orchard is in order or maybe your own family bonfire along with homemade hot apple cider while you carve your jack-o-lanterns.

Perhaps you can be a little more creative with your attire when you answer the door for this year’s trick or treaters. How can you add a little color into your life? Pick your favorite forest or scenic drive and check out the colors. Bet you’ll have some fun while you do it! Be open to the pleasures that can sweeten your life! Create your own magic—that’s Sacral Chakra energy!

I invite you to please post your favorite, fun costume or scenes from your favorite orchard or trail on Better Day Yoga’s Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Little-Canada-MN/Better-Day-Yoga-LLC/495055625435?ref=ts.

Breathwork and Visualization: In the “Meditation to Go” section I shared my own personal visualization/meditation for the shower. The following is a Sacral Chakra water meditation for the bath taken from The Chakra Energy Plan, The practical 7-step program to balance and revitalize, by Anna Selby. Enjoy!

Meditating on—and in—water has a powerful and positive effect on the Sacral Chakra. The heat and support of the water relaxes your body and your mind becomes still to focus on the meditation.

Spend some time preparing your bathroom before you do this meditation. Run a warm bath, light some candles, and make sure that you have some warm towels and a bath robe for when you come out of the bath. If you can, find a tape or CD recording of water—the sound of the sea or a fountain, or the music of whales is ideal. Play this softly in the background to help you meditate.

Get into the bath and submerge yourself in the water. Let go of any tension in your muscles and find a position in which your body can relax completely.

Breathe in deeply through your nose, bring the air down into your belly, hold it for a few moments and then exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat this three times and then let yourself breathe normally. Close your eyes and bring your attention to your breath. Don’t count your breath—just observe how your breath enters and leaves your body.

Now bring your consciousness to focus on the water around you. Feel the touch of it on your body, how it moves and responds to your breathing, its warmth, and how it supports your body. Observe how the water brings calmness and relaxation. Extend your consciousness to visualize the great bodies of water that cover most of the planet—the lakes, the seas, and the oceans. Sense the rhythm of the waves and their gentle lapping on the shore. Visualize the moon’s pull on the water, drawing the tides up and down. Picture yourself floating on a calm sea under a bright moon. Do this for at least five minutes, focusing on the sensation of the water holding and supporting you, and the pale moonlight shining down on you. Feel the moon pulling the tides of your body toward her and feel a sense of being at one with the waters of the world.

Gradually bring your awareness back to the water around you and your breath. Focus on your breathing for a few minutes, then slowly open your eyes and take in your surroundings. Feel the sense of tranquility and relaxation that comes from water meditation. When you are ready, get out of the bath, pat yourself dry, dress in a warm robe and go to bed or rest for at least a half an hour.

Affirmations:

  • I am creating the life I love.
  • I make time to do the things that I enjoy. I get out and experience life in a new way.
  • I am filled with praise and gratitude.
  • I am in the right place at the right time, doing the right thing.
  • I am a creature of light, open to my highest joy.
  • I am grateful for the joy of being me.
  • I receive pleasure and abundance with every breath I take.
  • Goodness, beauty, and joy resonate with my soul. I am at one with them.
  • I take pleasure in life with all of my senses.
  • I am willing to consider the possibility that there are new approaches to enjoying life which will enhance my sense of being alive and give me pleasure.
  • I can have pleasure.
  • I am a life enhancer.
  • It is safe to have life easy and pleasurable.
  • I am creating a healthy foundation on which creativity can flourish.
  • I open myself to the beauty, joy, and harmony of the Universe and I enjoy it.
  • I release my negative attitudes which block my experience of pleasure.

Sources:
The Book of Chakras, Ambika Wauters.
A Handbook of Chakra Healing, Spiritual Practice for Health, Harmony and Inner Peace, Kalashatra Govinda.
http://www.1lovespirit.com/affirmations-chakras.html
Power Thoughts, 365 Daily Affirmations, Louise L. Hay.

Diet and the Sacral Chakra: Drink plenty of water! Not enough water is a cause of fatigue, constipation, arthritis, back and neck pain, hunger, depression, and allergies! Drink more clean, purified water! Other ways to get water into your diet would be herbal teas and both fruit and vegetable juices such as oranges, apricots, pomegranates, blueberries, cherries, spinach, tomatoes, etc. Using a blender, you can create your own concoctions.

Aromatherapy and the Sacral Chakra: Scents associated with the sacral chakra are jasmine, ylang ylang, cinnamon, tangerine, rose, rose geranium, geranium (my personal favorite!), clary sage, and patchouli.

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils(tm) which are therapeutic, food-grade oils. Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.

Gem therapy and the Sacral Chakra: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras. For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy. Nothing is really solid. Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies? At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”. As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some sacral chakra gems are: Coral, citrine, cornelian, onyx, tiger’s eye, moonstone, pearl, aquamarine, and clear quartz, among others.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page. I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Sacral Chakra: Warrior poses all stimulate the Sacral Chakra! See both this month’s highlighted pose as well as last month’s for more on Warrior I and II!

The triangle pose, highlighted in my Dec/Jan newsletter is one of my favorite poses. Other poses noted as good for activating the sacral chakra: side stretch, pelvic tilt, cat/cow pose, butterfly pose, wide stance pelvic rolls, seated pelvic rotation (which I do at the end of each of my sessions) among others.

Please refer to the archives of Dec/Jan and April and August newsletters for more on the Sacral Chakra: https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm.

27
September

Sept. “Turning over a new leaf” solar plexus and throat chakra

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Sept. “Turning over a new leaf” solar plexus and throat chakra Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras. The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson: There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system. Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body. Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine. Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there. Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus. In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Being my birth month, I have loved September my whole life. I suspect that many of you feel a “call to action” when September hits. Summer is over and it’s time to get it done! The amazing Simple Abundance, A Daybook of Comfort and Joy, by Sara Ban Breathnach, has been a frequent companion of mine as I “come to the source” each morning to fill my cup for the day. The following is one of my absolute favorite readings since it heralds the beginning of September and speaks to the September doer in all of us. I’ve copied it for many friends since I find it so inspiring. It’s called “Turning over a new leaf”. Enjoy!

“Since ancient times, September has been viewed as the beginning of the new year, a time for reflection and resolution. Jews observe the High Holiday of Yom Kippur, the day of public and private atonement, a sacred withdrawal from the world for twenty-four hours in order to become right with God and others, so that real life might be renewed with passion and purpose.

Change in the natural world is subtle but relentless; seasons seem to give way gently to one another, even if the monthly motion is so swift we don’t realize we’re moving. But when the leaves start turning colors, it’s time for turning over a personal new leaf so that our lives might be restored. ‘What we need in autumn is an emotional or spiritual shot in the arm,’ Katharine Elizabeth Fite wrote in Good Housekeeping in 1949, urging the beginning of a new tradition for women: personal and positive resolutions in September. ‘Why do you suppose so many of us waste the autumn? Why don’t we make the effort that would provide something new in our lives?’ January’s negative resolutions ‘are made when we are worn out in spirit, body, and pocketbook, and have no real urge to do anything but rest.’

It seems to me that January resolutions are about will; September resolutions are about authentic wants. What do you want more or less of in your life, so that you can love the life you’re leading? It could be as simple as seeing friends more often, setting aside time to have adventures with your children while they still want your companionship, rekindling romance in your daily round, calling a solitary hour a day your own, or just taking more walks in the dazzling sunshine.

The beauty of autumnal resolutions is that no one else knows we’re making them. Autumnal resolutions don’t require horns, confetti, and champagne. September resolutions ask only that we be open to positive change. I can try that. So can you.”

Don’t you just love the call to action? And like the quote from the movie, You’ve got mail, September “makes me wanna buy school supplies.”

That being said, I think that while Sara Ban Breathnach says January resolutions are about will, and September’s are about authentic wants, this is the perfect time of year to combine the two. Because without your intention and will your authentic wants just won’t happen.

Intention and authentic wants—sounds to me like the third, Solar Plexus chakra and the fifth, Throat chakra are the go-to chakras for our September call to action! “When the Solar Plexus chakra is healthy you become more aware of your own internal energy and how you feel about the world and events around you.” And the fifth chakra “is the energy hot spot that tells the world how we are feeling and allows us to ‘talk our talk’, express our beliefs, and share the teaching we each have to give.” Crystal Chakra Healing—Energy medicine for mind, body, and spirit, Philip Permutt.

“Your own internal energy”—that’s your intention and spirit. “How you feel about the world and events around you”—that’s your authentic wants talking. Taking responsibility for our authentic wants, deciding that they will happen—that’s third chakra work, that’s the strength, confidence, and self-esteem your Solar Plexus energy brings. The Solar Plexus chakra is where you build your strength and develop your will. “Telling the world how you are feeling and talking your talk”—that’s expression that’s fifth chakra. It’s speaking and living your truth, releasing your voice and letting your creativity out.

“Our ability to communicate clearly determines the quality of our experiences. It also reflects the degree of intention we have to be understood and supported in life.” That’s a direct quote from the Throat chakra section in The Book of Chakras, by Ambika Wauters, but I also think it’s a great summation of how the Throat and Solar Plexus chakras relate to one another—intention and communicating that intention.

The third chakra is located at the Solar Plexus, in the middle of the body just below the breastbone. It is where our “gut feeling” is, our “internal pendulum”—our personal power, ambition, desire, and emotion. The Solar Plexus chakra is where we put our beliefs, ideas, and our creative inspirations in to action. Balancing this chakra gives you direction and your actions purpose. It’s honing your focus in on what you are going after. It’s our sense of self.

The fifth chakra is located in the middle of the neck above the collarbone. It is our communication center for our creative expression. We express in many ways—verbally, mentally, and physically. The Universe is always listening. “What’s the Universe doing right now? It’s eavesdropping on your every desire.” Deepak Chopra.

“Pretend that you are happy and you will feel happy, pretend that you are angry and you will feel angry. Well known to actors (e.g., Dolman, 1949) this effect has been extensively studied by psychologists following the tradition of William James (1890) and self-perception theory (Bem, 1972; Laird, 1974). According to self-perception theory, we are like external observers of ourselves, because we must infer our internal states from our actions. Our emotional and other feelings are derived from our bodily experience of facial expressions, postures, levels of arousal, actions, etc. In that sense, feelings are the consequences of behavior, not the causes: We feel happy because we smile, and angry because we scowl.” http://www.psy.plymouth.ac.uk/research/ece/publications/pdf/keep-smiling.pdf

So we’ve decided our authentic wants are happening. How do we let the world know about that decision? That’s our communication chakra—the Throat chakra! If a creative inspiration comes to mind, it will only manifest when you express it! Our fifth, Throat chakra is all about following our dreams (another word for authentic wants) and then creating and expressing them. It’s about having the faith in our decision to have those authentic wants.

I think we’re all guilty of wanting a dream to come true, but doubting the possibility. It’s the doubt that gets in the way of accomplishing your goal. If you don’t have faith in it, the Universe won’t either. There’s that Law of Attraction again. Your thoughts and feelings turn into your reality. A lack of confidence and energy is a sign of a deficient third chakra. “When you argue for your limitations, all you get are your limitations.”—Wayne Dyer. The ability to take risks with a positive, confident sense of self is the sign of a balanced third chakra. “No-limit people are so in charge that they can trust their instincts, be childlike, be creative, and do anything that makes sense to them.” –Wayne Dyer.

Taking those risks requires speaking your truth (another word for authentic wants)—fifth chakra work. Speaking your truth also means you are communicating well with the self—yes the self. YOU know what YOU want. You exercise your power of choice. That’s a balanced fifth chakra.

How many of us know the ins and outs of our loved ones, but haven’t a clue about ourselves? How do you get to know someone? What types of questions do you ask? How important is it to be a good listener if you want to get to know someone? Ask those same questions of yourself, and listen to the answers. Then live YOUR life creating from what you heard. Love yourself enough to know yourself well. Self-worth is the primary quality of the Solar Plexus chakra.

As Sara Ban Breathnach’s September first quote asks: What do you want more or less of in your life, so that you can love the life you’re leading? Free your creativity!

So how do we unite the energies of the Solar Plexus chakra and the Throat chakra? Taking just one small step in the direction of your dreams tells the Universe you are ready for action and opens the floodgates for all systems go in Universal support. You receive in proportion to what you give, so the saying goes. This is a universal truth.

One small step—you wonder, what will that be? Only you can answer that. I tell my students that if they aren’t sure of the Yoga pose, they can try only a portion of it. To try only the portion they are sure of—always—One small part. So instead of full crocodile pose (low plank or push-up pose), just do a “little dip”. That’s safe. Then you approach it with an “I can do that” kind of attitude. What’s that saying about putting one step in front of the other? Soon you’ll be walking out the door. I’ve talked about this in other newsletters. Your one small step can be any number of things. If it feels right, go for it….”Just do it!™” to recap one of the opening slogans.

It’s the build-up to something bigger that needs the steps in between to make you feel comfortable with going for the end result. Those steps in between are required as your foundation. Remember you can’t build only the top level of your high rise because you only want the view. You need all the other floors! You need that foundation.

Yes, even the steps in between—the one small step—can be scary. If you go into it knowing that it’s okay to fail so long as you are failing forward, that’s safe, isn’t it? “ Change how you see failure. Look at it as a teacher, fine tuning your success . Rule of thumb: success is always a horrible teacher but a very good drinking buddy.”
http://www.ehow.com/how_4560004_fail-forward.html#ixzz0xq4y1xWp

It’s a cliché, but Babe Ruth is famous for his home run record without most of us even realizing that for decades he held the record for strikeouts. For more fun facts about other famous people who did not give up, go to: http://des.emory.edu/mfp/efficacynotgiveup.html.

Remember to be comfortable with change. No, change is not meant to be comfortable, but it’s your ability to go ahead and take those risks and being responsible for the end result that builds a strong Solar Plexus chakra. Some refer to the ability to take risks as being spontaneous—playful even. Those people are comfortable with change. They have changed their relationship with the possibility of failure. They don’t view it the way many of us view it. They fully expect to achieve their goal no matter how many steps it takes. It’s not a failure if they don’t stay down. They’ve balanced their third chakra. They’re living creatively letting their full expression come to life because they fully believe that everything in the universe is conspiring for their full expression. They believe they are deserving and they expect the best—a balanced Throat chakra.

Trust your decisions. That’s a big part of what some people might refer to as taking risks. Your heart knows what you want to do. Do it. Trust and follow its direction. No more second-guessing. “Move on”, as my husband often tells me when I’m wrestling with a decision I’ve literally already made. This is a chakra I am personally working on strengthening.

So take that one small step, whatever that is for you, and let us know about it on the Better Day Yoga Facebook page. Live your authentic wants and speak your truth! http://www.facebook.com/pages/Little-Canada-MN/Better-Day-Yoga-LLC/495055625435?ref=ts

Breathwork and Visualization :

Begin by relaxing and feeling comfortable. The solar plexus area holds a lot of tension. To ease any tightness and pain in that area, gently massage the abdominal area as you do the following breath exercise. Take several deep belly breaths exhaling slowly, elongating the exhale and enabling your upper back and chest muscles to begin to relax. Return to equal ratio breathing setting your intention to let go of any tension in your body. Feel tension release from your scalp and feel your eyes pulling inward.

Focus your attention first on the solar plexus area and visualize a golden yellow ball expanding in your belly, filling your entire abdomen. See the golden yellow light releasing tension in your stomach and surrounding areas as it fills you with light. With each breath you are releasing more and more tension.

Next, travel up the body, focusing your attention on your mouth and throat. Send your breath into that area, releasing tension and congestion by breathing deeply into it. Visualize a turquoise/sky blue ball of light filling your jaw area and throat. As you visualize and hold this image, let the colors deepen in intensity, bathing your mouth and throat with healing blue energy. Feel the coolness of this healing energy as it relieves all tension at the back of your neck, your throat lining, and tongue. Feel the radiating, cooling energy expanding and filling your mouth and throat.

Feel your creative inspirations dwelling in your center waiting for expression. Sense them rumbling, ready to come alive. Now visualize your best self, taking action in one small way towards your most pronounced creative inspiration. Visualize as many details about that action step as you can. What kind of day is it? Is it a bright, sunny day? Or is it a stormy day with clouds on the horizon? What are the tools you’ll use to put your creativity out there? How do they feel when you pick them up? Can you smell the anticipation in the air? What do you hear? Create a sensory experience in your mind of what would need to take place for your one small step and visualize that experience daily.

The Secret by Rhonda Byrne emphasizes that adding movement to your visualization is essential to speeding up the manifestation of it. So visualize an active scene adding movement where you can. Discover within yourself that you are the source of your manifestations. Ask the Universe for what you want and keep on asking by visualizing it. Never give up. Impress upon the Universe what your ideal is.

Excerpt from Psycho-Cybernetics, by Maxwell Maltz (another excellent book I’ve owned since childhood, thanks to my big sister—you sisters never know how you’ll influence your younger siblings):

Key Practical Points

1) Understand the basic psychology of mental imagery first.

2) You get what you put in; don’t be a dabbler. Put your heart into what you picture and
work systematically and with self-discipline and focus.

3) Work on your self-image as often as you can; ideally, at least 10 min. per day for 2 weeks.

4) Verbalization greatly enhances visualization. Discuss your image with others, write down the details each day in a journal, mentally describe it as you meditate on the details.

5) Everyone can do it. Worry is negative mental rehearsal. If you can worry you can goal visualize. Turn the problem-focus into solution-focus, the negative into a positive.

6) If you are a beginner, persevere. It gets far, far easier to visualize after the first few stages of your practice.

The Opposite of Worry

Everyone can have a positive vision of their goals. Just do what you do when you
worry, but substitute a positive image for a negative one. Maltz: “anti-worry.” If you can
worry, you can goal visualize. If you couldn’t visualize positive images, you wouldn’t be
able to worry about the negative ones. Everyone can do it.

Relaxation aids Visualization

When people become tense, stressed, or anxious they struggle to picture positive images. When people fall asleep they are very relaxed, and yet even the person who believes themselves to be the world’s worst visualizer will dream, and hence picture things so clearly they take them for reality while they sleep. The more you relax and stop “trying too hard” the more easily you will picture your goal images.

The Ease of Non-Effort

In order for you to feel you can picture images without force or effort you must assume that it is easy. Keep it simple. Tell yourself that what you are doing is simple, natural, and easy and it will be so.

Building Belief in your Goal

1) “Just suppose…” Begin simply by exploring the idea of your goal. Refining it’s implications and consequences. Define what you want to happen.

2) “It’s possible this could happen.” Remind yourself that it is possible, continually reinforce your focus on the fact that it could happen, feeling that it is a realistic possibility.

3) Picture goal “as if” it is happening now. Picture your goal as happening right now, picture it over and over again, strengthening it, and adding more detail. Build belief by telling yourself that it will happen”

http://www.attitudedeterminesaction.com/articles/Psycho_Cybernetics_Notes.pdf

One more thing to keep in mind as you are doing the asking: “If you can perceive your goal in the context of serving mankind, it will enable you to generate more power. If you always come back to your center for direction and inspiration, and act with unconditional love, you will be assured of manifesting your desire.” The Oracle Within, Dick Sutphen.

Take your visualization to the next level. Visualize yourself communicating your accomplishment to the world. Sense your pride and excitement at having completed your goal. Notice the confidence in your voice and how you carry yourself. Hold onto that energy for as many breaths as feels right. You’ll know when your visualization feels complete.

Affirmations :

  • I am special and unique, with my own set of talents and abilities.
  • No one can do things exactly the way I can do them.
  • There is no competition and there is no comparison.
  • My life is amazing. I accept my good now.
  • I live an amazing life.
  • I believe I am deserving and I expect the best.
  • I believe that everything in the universe is conspiring for my full expression.
  • I am worthy of the life I say I want.
  • I am worthy of the best.
  • I am worthy because I exist.
  • I choose the best for myself.
  • I am confident in my ability to make my life work.
  • I am confident in the goodness of life itself to see me through.
  • I choose the power of life.
  • I live my truth
  • I communicate my truth. I am the truth.
  • I develop will each time I meet a life challenge.
  • I learn to listen to myself and trust my inner voice.
  • I have faith in my decision-making ability, paying attention to my strong hunches and leads.
  • I have the right to be happy, and it is safe for me to follow my heart’s guidance.
  • I take action in the direction of my dreams, passions, talents, and interests.
  • I focus only on today with respect to my goals, trusting that all of my tomorrows will work out well.

Sources: Power Mudras, Yoga Hand Postures for Women, Sabrina Mesko.
Science of Mind, August 2010, August 26 th reading for the day by Eugene D. Holden Universal Laws of Conscious Creation deck, Lara Solara, Dana Da Ponte, Marlene Chapman The Book of Chakras, Ambika Wauters
Daily Guidance from your Angels, Doreen Virtue, PhD

Diet and the Solar Plexus and Throat Chakras:
Past newsletters (April for the Solar Plexus Chakra, and May for the Throat Chakra https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm) remind us that Solar Plexus Chakra is related to the “fire element”. To increase this energy, think hot, spicy foods and hot teas. Avoid cold drinks. A little more on this chakra and how it affects our physical body comes from Healing with Crystals and Chakra Energies, Sue and Simon Lilly:

“The physical attributes of the solar plexus chakra fall into three main areas: the digestion, the nervous system and the immune system.

Digestion: The process of digestion and assimilation of nutrients is vital to sustain life. The organs linked to the solar plexus chakra are the stomach, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, duodenum and small intestine. For Digestion and the assimilation of nutrients to be successful, all these organs have to work in harmony. Failure to digest food efficiently means that nutrients are not absorbed.

Immune System: The solar plexus chakra is put under great pressure by the way we live today. Its physical functions are strained by the types of food we eat, the pace of life and new toxins in our environment. It is not surprising that many of the diseases in our society today are a sign of some dysfunction in the solar plexus chakra.

Nervous System: The solar plexus chakra is often referred to as the fusebox of the body. In this area are large concentrations of nerve tissue that, if disrupted, can affect the whole nervous system.” For more, please refer to Healing with Crystals and Chakra Energies, Sue and Simon Lilly.

A possible diet for the Throat Chakra would be light foods such as grapes, salads, herbs, and plain yogurt with a teaspoon of honey for the throat. Slippery elm in tea or lozenge form is a treat for the throat as well. “The throat chakra is associated with the thyroid gland which requires iodine, tyrosine (an amino acid), zinc, vitamin A, vitamin E, copper, selenium, and the omega-3 fatty acid and oleic acid. Adding sea vegetables to your diet can be helpful for supplying some of the ingredients listed above.” Chakra Balancing by Anodea Judith.

Aromatherapy and the Solar Plexus and Throat Chakras :
Solar plexus chakra scents include neroli, peppermint, chamomile, bergamot, juniper and lavender (the universal scent of all chakras).

Throat chakra scents include bergamot, chamomile, eucalyptus, peppermint, myrrh, and lavender.

Why not try a blend taking a favorite scent from both categories? Chamomile, Peppermint and Lavender are all scents for both chakras. I think that would make a soothing combo!

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils. Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.

Gem therapy and the Solar Plexus and Throat Chakras : Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras. For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy. Nothing is really solid. Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies? At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”. As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Some solar plexus chakra gems are: Topaz, citrine, amber, tiger’s eye, yellow jasper, ametrine, sulfur, and, golden calcite among others.

Throat chakra stones include all the blue stones: sapphire, lapis lazuli, blue topaz, aquamarine, turquoise, chrysocolla, blue lace agate, hawks eye, blue quartz, blue fluorite, azurite, blue opal, and sodalite, among others. (Blue Sapphire is also the birthstone for September!)

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com. I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the Solar Plexus and Throat Chakras : As mentioned earlier, all yoga poses work each of the seven major chakras with specific ones addressing specific chakras.

My favorite Throat Chakra pose is supported fish pose using blocks. Others would be shoulderstand, cow pose and bridge pose, among others.

Yoga poses for stimulating the Solar Plexus chakra : Revolved triangle pose works with the Solar Plexus chakra. Twists, in general, work with the Solar Plexus chakra, as do poses that work the abdomen such as belly rolls and stomach crunches. Plank pose is a great one for the power of our will, as are all the Warrior poses—Warrior I being the Yoga pose highlighted this month!

Please refer to the archives of April and May newsletters for more on these two chakras: https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm.


27
August

Deepening our connection to Nature & the absolute wonder of it all

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
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If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras. The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson: There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system. Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body. Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine. Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there. Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus. In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

                                                  


Ah, summer!  This month we are focusing on deepening our connection to Nature—Mother Earth.  What better way to enjoy summer to the max then to focus on ways to connect more deeply with Mother Nature—with the physical environment of our Mother Earth. 

The root chakra, as discussed in previous newsletters, https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm, is our grounding chakra and resonates to the color red.  It is the first chakra and is located at what is called the Root Center – the base of the spine or tail bone/coccyx.  It is “associated with the Earth, with the qualities of resistance and solidity.  It opens downward in the direction of the Earth, and this in itself would indicate its importance in connecting a person to their physical environment.  Through the first chakra, energy from the Earth enters the subtle energy system and it is through the first chakra that a person feels their connection to the Earth.”  Chakra Therapy, Keith Sherwood. 

The second/sacral chakra, also discussed in previous newsletters, is our center of creativity, sensuality, and passion.  It vibrates to the color orange.  “It is the seat of creativity through which a person experiences the childlike wonder and excitement of the manifest universe.  It is from the second chakra that a person experiences the world as a magical place.”  Chakra Therapy, Keith Sherwood. 

Ah!  What better two chakras to focus on for deepening our connection to Nature and the absolute wonder of it all?  Even the sunrises and sunsets echo the reds and yellows of these two chakras, activating them in us when we take the time to connect, ground, and look on with childlike wonder at the magic of it all.  Let’s connect to the Earth and experience the world as a magical place!  Are you with me?!

The second chakra, when functioning correctly, uses your sensual nature to see the world full of wonder and excitement.  It allows you to see life in everything else and enables you to be a participant in the “ongoing ecstasy of creation.” 

The ongoing ecstasy of creation—each sunrise and sunset are a reminder that life is ongoing.  Wasn’t it Annie that said: “The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow”?
 

.  Why does that always make me cry? 

As I write this, it occurs to me that I have treasured the shaman’s message quoted earlier—Every night God gives us a gift in the sunsetat face-value.  It has been the visual display of the sunsets in all their glory that I have considered my personal gift and oh what a gift!  However, it occurs to me that I could have missed part of the message, and unknowingly missed part of the gift.  Could the shaman have also been referring to the gift of life ongoing—of the ongoing ecstasy of creation?   And just as the sunrises and the sunsets remind us of this; it also reminds us that we are part of the ongoing ecstasy of creation, that we are part of Nature, and that we have the power to create our own world.  Our root chakra embodies our connection to Nature, and our sacral chakra embodies our creativity. 

To add perhaps one more layer of the shaman’s gift, perhaps by “naming” the gift, he was also inviting our childlike wonder out to play by noticing the gifts in the sky. And not just to notice, but to believe once again in the magic of it all—to believe in the “excitement of the manifest universe”. 

Believing in magic?  I know what you’re thinking.  You’re thinking that’s for kids.  Yes, it is for kids, but it is also the domain of the second chakra, a chakra that doesn’t go away just because we are no longer young. If you don’t use it, like many aspects of our bodies, you lose it.  So wake it up again!  Why wouldn’t you want to feel the magic?  What’s stopping you from enjoying something that will make you believe in the goodness of life?  Go outside every chance you can get and make contact with the Earth.  Whenever I’ve read that suggestion, I always think the writer didn’t live in Minnesota; but even in the dead of winter in Minnesota, you can look up to the sky and appreciate Orion for making his appearance in the night sky.

 



What’s your favorite constellation in the summer?  http://astronomyonline.org/Observation/ConstellationsNorthernHemi_Summer.asp.  Have you caught a shooting star lately?  Have you made the infamous wish on one?  Go ahead, try it.  Reawaken the magical hope of tomorrow.  The next meteor shower is the Perseids on the night of August 12.  http://stardate.org/nightsky/meteors/ .  What bird makes your favorite sound?  Do they seem to chirp with a personal message just for you?  http://www.enature.com/birding/audio.asp.  When was the last time you didn’t care if you were caught in the rain?  Why not take a lesson from Gene Kelly and go “Singin’ in the Rain”: 

.  I dare anyone to watch and listen to that song and not feel better!  (Another song to add to my “upspiral” CD of music that I first referred to in my May newsletter:  https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm.)

Make friends with Nature!  You are part of it!  Act like it!

Taking the time to be present to Nature, well that’s something we all could use more of. Taking the time to meditate on and in Nature, well that’s priceless. Study after study confirms the benefits of yoga, meditation, and breathwork. (I’ve referenced many of them on my Facebook page:  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Better-Day-Yoga-LLC/495055625435?ref=ts.  Likewise, ”There is a strong body of research confirming that direct contact with nature increases mental health and psychological and spiritual development. Benefits include stress reduction, a sense of coherence and belonging, improved self-confidence and self-discipline, and a broader sense of community.” http://www.wilderness-programs-info.com/nature-is-therapeutic.html

Thich Nhat Hanh has written several books about meditation.  One of my absolute favorite is called Walking Meditation.  He suggests that while walking outdoors, “in order to connect more deeply with all of the healing elements within and around you, you may want to stop walking from time to time and simply breathe.  The more you make yourself available to these elements, the more you are refreshed and healed.”  That’s being present.  That’s root chakra at work. 

Then he adds in the second chakra aspect of wonder and believing in the magic:  “Breathing in, good morning, birds; Breathing out, thank you for your songs,” or “Breathing in, hello blue sky”; “Breathing out, thank you dear blue sky, for being there for me.” “When you can make yourself more present in this way, the birds and the blue sky are yours to enjoy and hold.  If you continue to breathe consciously and smile to the sky, its space and beauty begin to penetrate your whole being, nourishing you and waking within you the seeds of joy, love, and freedom.  And during this time, you will refrain from watering the seeds of sorrow, anger, and despair.”

I think sometimes we forget that there are ebbs and flows with life, and that just as a change you may have not wanted to take place has occurred, it will also change again in the future. Change is the only constant, as they say, and that’s good!  We want to keep everything status quo.  We want to keep everything still in time.  But just as the second chakra is about creativity and passion, it’s also about going with the flow—the flow of life. 

It’s good to remember to look for comfort in the fact that life is ongoing, and that yes, the sun will come up tomorrow.  Nature and YOU will rise again tomorrow.  Believe it.  And when you can’t bring yourself to believe it, send your energetic roots down into the earth and ground yourself in the present moment.  Because THAT is the only moment we have to participate in life.  That’s the first and second chakras working together.  ”The past is history. The future is a mystery. Today is a gift, that’s why they call it the present.” Babatunde Olatunji.  “Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.” – Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959), acclaimed architect and philosopher.

Breathwork and Visualization:

The breathwork part of this month’s chakra section is in the mudra section below and to be used upon awakening at sunrise.  This month’s mudra “concentrates the energy of the second chakra and directs it into the energy centers above it.”  What follows is the visualization exercise that also goes along with this month’s mudra and focuses on the sunrise—perfect for this month’s focus on Nature’s sunsets and sunrises:

In your imagination, see yourself sitting in a good place where you can enjoy the sunrise.  The sun slowly rises, and you let the colors red, orange, and yellow have their effect on you for a long time.  These colors awaken and improve your mood.  Now imagine yourself as a person who is full of youthful strength and new impulses, as someone who enjoys life, a person who goes out into the world with love, and richly blesses it with a sincere smile, good deeds, and beautiful things.

Affirmation:  I am filled with pleasure and enthusiasm, which allow me to achieve great things.  I enjoy life to the fullest.

Source:  Mudras.  Yoga in your hands, Gertrud Hirschi.

Affirmations :

  • I am filled with pleasure and enthusiasm, which allow me to achieve great things.
  • I enjoy life to the fullest.
  • I spend time outdoors.
  • When I go out, I connect with the powerful and healing spirit of Nature, and I allow it to cleanse and lift my energy.
  • Spending time this way is a gift I regularly give myself.
  • I belong wherever I am.
  • I trust in the goodness of life to carry me through.
  • I choose life.
  • I open myself to simple, healing pleasure.
  • I deserve to feel peace in my life.

Sources:  Mudras.  Yoga in your hands, Gertrud Hirschi.
Daily Guidance from your Angels, Doreen Virtue, PhD
The Book of Chakras, Ambika Wauters

Diet and the root and sacral Chakras:
Past newsletters (https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm) remind us root chakra foods are grounding foods:  Eating root vegetables like beets, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, turnips, yams, etc.  Beans, legumes, nuts, tofu and soy products are also grounding, comfort foods as are seeds like pine nuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds.

As mentioned earlier, the second/sacral chakra is about going with the flow.  So to stimulate this chakra, it’s important to remember the healing benefits of water – drink plenty of water! Other ways to get water into your diet would be herbal teas and both fruit and vegetable juices such as oranges, apricots, pomegranates, blueberries, cherries, spinach, tomatoes, etc. Using a blender, you can create your own concoctions.  With all the fruits in season right now, what a great way to create a healthy body and a strong second chakra!  Be sure and check out this month’s Featured Recipe for a great berry recipe!

Here’s some repeat links from my February newsletter on juicing:  http://www.healingdaily.com/juicing-for-health/juicing-recipes.htm, or http://dkmommyspot.com/nutrient-rich-vegetable-soup-or-how-to-make-soup-without-a-recipe/, or www.foodnetwork.com/topics/soup.

Aromatherapy and the root and sacral Chakras:   
Previous newsletters highlighted the aromas best for the root chakra:  Scents can be very grounding. I’m sure you all have your favorite scent from childhood. So that may be a good place to start. Some possible grounding scents to try: Sandalwood, patchouli, pine, cedar, balsam fir or frankincense.

Scents associated with the sacral chakra are jasmine, ylang ylang, cinnamon, tangerine, rose, rose geranium, geranium (my personal favorite!), clary sage, and patchouli.

Why not try a blend taking a favorite scent from both categories? 

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils.  Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order. 

Gem therapy and the root and sacral Chakras:  Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras.  For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy.  Nothing is really solid.  Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies?  At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”.  As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

Grounding stones for root chakra: Hematite, smokey quartz, garnet, and black tourmaline, among others.

Sacral chakra stones to consider include: Coral, citrine, moonstone, pearl, aquamarine, and clear quartz, among others.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com.  I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating the root and sacral Chakras:  As mentioned earlier, all yoga poses work each of the seven major chakras with specific ones addressing specific chakras. 

A review of past newsletters reminds us that poses that activate the root chakra are:  Chair pose, knees to chest pose, easy-seated pose, seated cat/cow pose, child’s pose, and final relaxation pose, among others.

Yoga poses for stimulating the sacral chakra: The triangle pose is a representation of creativity. Other poses noted as good for activating the sacral chakra: pelvic tilt, cat/cow pose, butterfly pose, wide stance pelvic rolls, seated pelvic rotation (which I do at the end of each of my sessions) among others.

Please refer to the archives of November and December/January newsletters for more on these two chakras:  https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm

27
July

Compassionate loving nature, immune-boosting ability and visualization

Written by Sandy. Posted in: Chakrascope ~ Your Vital Energy Centers
Comments Off on Compassionate loving nature, immune-boosting ability and visualization Tagged with

If you are familiar with chakras, then you can tell from my logo that I love chakras. The rainbow-colored spheres within my logo are representative of the chakra system within the body.

If you are unfamiliar, here’s a quick lesson: There are seven energy centers called chakras (literally “wheels”) that store energy/life force/prana. They are along the spinal column and correlate to major nerve ganglia branching forth from the spinal column. Each has a different relationship to a gland in the body’s endocrine system. Each stimulates different organs and systems in the body. Hatha Yoga activates these energy centers releasing the energy that flows through the spine. Yoga helps these energy centers/nerve bundles to function correctly clearing blocks that may be there. Each chakra also is associated with a mental/emotional focus. In each newsletter I’ll highlight how you can work with a particular chakra to correspond with the season.

Summer is finally here! There is an abundance of light with longer days which means we need more energy to take full advantage of the extra daylight. Let’s use the increased energy of the last chakra which vibrates quicker than all the others. As we climb up the chakra ladder from the base/root chakra to the crown chakra, the chakras vibrate quicker and quicker. The seventh chakra relates to the general intelligence of the body—the divine within—and vibrates to the color violet. If we stay out of the way of the general intelligence of the body, it is designed to naturally stay healthy, constantly regenerating.

According to A Handbook of Chakra Healing by Kalashatra Govinda, “Normally a strong, healthy crown chakra ensures a long, healthy life. Chakra work can stimulate the crown chakra, thereby protecting against chronic illnesses and promoting the body’s own natural healing processes.” She lists a weakness in the immune system as being an attribute of a weakness or block in the crown chakra. She reminds us that all the chakras work together toward a healthy body, and that the best way of enhancing the crown chakra through natural healing methods is to engage in intensive work on all the other chakras.

One of the ways our seventh chakra can get out of balance is when we become attached to results and outcomes. Then we have rigid belief systems—such as believing in the body’s inability to heal as we get older, and have a closed mind to thinking anything else is possible.

Having an open mind and the ability to question the status quo is an example of a balanced seventh chakra. When our seventh chakra is balanced we experience our own limitless nature. We are connected to spirit, but not addicted to that connection. “The seventh chakra is about opening ourselves up to the spirit of creation living our lives through divine guidance and seeing the world with a sense of wonder, love, amazement, and unity, as we did as a small child. When you reach this ultimate balanced state, you are truly at peace with yourself and the world. You emanate love, wisdom, and compassion.” Anatomy for Yoga, Nicky Jenkins & Leigh Brandon. I can only reiterate that as a child, I had an undeniable belief in my body’s natural ability to heal.

Most texts on the seventh chakra mention that few achieve this ultimate freedom, but we all have some enlightened moments. I don’t know if my dream state mentioned earlier where I was aware of my body’s natural ability to heal was one of those moments, but it’s the closest thing I can equate it to.

The visualization practices I suggested using in the opening of this newsletter is working with the sixth chakra which was covered in detail in last month’s newsletter: https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm. Using visualization, you can create your own good mood and healthy states of mind, health, and energy. If you’ve been working on your visualization skills from last month, then you have a leg-up this month to create your own vacation state of mind whether you’re on vacation or not; and you are your own body’s best partner in creating health and well-being. This is the sixth chakra working with the seventh chakra.

Since we are focusing this month on using our attitudes and beliefs to enhance our health, well-being, and energy, I’d like to introduce a “minor chakra” that specifically encourages a healthy immune system—the thymus chakra. According to Mary Horsley, author of Chakra Workout, each acupuncture point is a mini-chakra. The thymus chakra is in the center of the chest above the thymus gland.

I’ve taught a “thymus pump” in both my yoga classes as well as my facial exercise classes: The thymus lies just beneath the upper part of the breastbone in the middle of the chest, and it plays a vital role in the body’s immune system. Because it is the link between the mind and the body, the first response to emotional or physical stress is shrinkage of the thymus gland and a reduction of life energy. The thymus thump stimulates the immune system and the vitality of the body, and boosts metabolism.

Find the U-shaped notch between your collar bones and then go directly below it about an inch to find an indentation. That’s where you’ll thump. Thump the chest with your fingertips. I do this every day 90 times.

The thymus tends to atrophy as we get older—which begs the question, did it atrophy because we don’t believe in our body’s natural ability to heal? Who knows? According to the Chakra Workout book, in former civilizations that were more spiritually attuned, it is thought that the thymus gland remained fully functioning. This chakra is considered “another higher level heart chakra” where we “embody divine love, and act from a truly compassionate nature.” Physically it links with the pituitary gland and generates energy.

As mentioned, summer’s extra energy requirement means we will be expelling more energy. Stimulating and working with the thymus chakra is a great way to increase the well-being and energy of the body. Working with your compassionate nature increases your health and well-being as well. Healing of all kinds begins with love. That’s working with the heart and thymus chakras.

Remember from our February newsletter, https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm, the heart chakra is devoted to love and compassion. Working with the heart center chakra begins the process of self knowledge and healing. It’s being your own best friend. That includes using your attitude and visualization skills to benefit your health and well-being.

”Happy people have younger hearts, younger arteries, and a younger RealAge. Happy people recover more quickly from surgery, cope better with pain, have lower blood pressure, and have longer life expectancy than unhappy people.

Studies also suggest that happy people may have stronger immune systems — they’re less likely to get colds and flu viruses. And when they do, their symptoms tend to be mild.

Not surprisingly, happy people are better at looking after their health, too. When people’s happiness levels improve, so do their health behaviors. They exercise more, wear sunscreen, and go for regular checkups.”
http://www.realage.com/soothe-stress/mind-and-mood/happiness-and-your-health?click=p3link1

Another “RealAge” gem reminds us that expressing compassion and gratitude to others (heart chakra) increases your own happiness. “ When a group of students wrote a series of one-page thank-you letters every 2 weeks for 6 weeks, measurements showed that their baseline happiness levels increased by 20 percent. The students expressed gratitude in writing, and their happiness increased with each letter. Every month, try writing a couple of thank-you notes to people who did something nice for you.“ http://www.realage.com/tips/get-happy-quickly-by-writing-one-of these?eid=7194&memberid=5734411

All of this ties into the opening theme of building your health through your state of mind, and of being happier through your state of mind. So we combine our compassionate, loving nature (heart chakra) and our immune-boosting ability (thymus chakra) with our visualization/vacation state-of-mind mood creation skills (sixth chakra). Then we stay out of the way of the general intelligence of the body and let go of our attachment to rigid beliefs in aging (seventh chakra). This is our recipe for enjoying the long days of summer—and our lives—to the fullest! Now where’s my sunscreen?

Breathwork and Visualization:

Chakra-Energy Massage:
The seventh chakra can also be gently stimulated and harmonized using the technique of chakra-energy massage:

  • Lie on the floor on your back. Relax and close your eyes. To awaken the energy of the hand chakras, gently rub your hands together a few times.
  • Place your left hand at the very top of your head and place your right hand over the left. Breathe in and out a few times.
  • Let your breathing become deeper, and begin to imagine that with each inhalation you are drawing in cosmic energy and with each exhalation that energy is being sent to your crown chakra.
  • Repeat this for the duration of seven breaths, while visualizing this energy as indigo or clear light that streams from your hands into your crown chakra.
  • Lay your hands relaxed on the floor and become aware of the harmonizing effect on the crown chakra.
  • Take some time. Try to heighten your inner awareness so that you can feel whether the energy massage has changed anything, whether you can perceive a difference in your mind and spirit, and whether your thoughts feel freer and lighter.

Source: A Handbook of Chakra Healing, Kalashatra Govinda

Thymus Chakra meditation:

“Sit in a comfortable meditation position and close your eyes. Breathe quietly, and picture someone, or somewhere in the world, where there is suffering. Visualize green/blue healing light pouring from your thymus chakra to that person or place. Visualize the light growing stronger and stronger with each breath, and being replenished in a constant flow from the cosmos. End when you feel intuitively that the exercise is complete.” Source: Chakra Workout, Mary Horsley.

Affirmations:

  • Today is a wonderful day. I choose to make it so
  • I accept perfect health as my natural state of being
  • My body wants to be active and healthy.
  • Exercise is fun for me.
  • I am free to think wonderful thoughts. I am in control of my own mind.
  • All that I seek is already within me.
  • I now create my life in the way I want it to be.
  • I move beyond limited human-mind thinking and align myself with the infinite Divine Mind, where all things are possible.
  • My life is a party to be experienced and shared with everyone I know.
  • I work for enjoyment and satisfaction—and not just to earn a living.
  • I use my mind and thoughts to enhance my life.
  • As I heal myself, my presence heals others.  As I heal myself, I heal the generations past and future.  As I heal myself, I heal the Earth.  I set my intentions, my prayers and my actions to heal myself and the Earth.
  • I am fully aware—in my body, thoughts, and feelings.
  • The essence of my being is light and peace .
  • I open myself to the infinite power of God .

Sources: Power Thoughts 365 Daily Affirmations, Louise L. Hay (must have book!)
June 26, 2010 Sierra Bender e-newsletter, www.SierraBender.com
A Handbook of Chakra Healing, Kalashatra Govinda

Diet and the heart/thymus, third-eye, and crown chakras:
Past newsletters (February and June: https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm) remind us that green leafy vegetables, green teas, and immune-boosting oregano are all heart chakra nourishing foods. Eating intentionally was an important element of diet for the third-eye chakra, as was dark blue/purple foods containing antioxidants which destroy free radicals in the body include eggplant, purple kale, blueberries, figs, plums, purple grapes, raisins, among others. The crown chakra enjoys a pure, light vegetarian diet.

Aromatherapy and heart/thymus, third-eye, and crown Chakras: We’ve been talking about energy with the crown chakra being the chakra that vibrates the quickest. Essential oils raise the vibrational frequency of the body. When the vibrational frequency of the body drops, we become more receptive to ill health: http://justalist.blogspot.com/2008/03/vibrational-frequency-list.html. Therapeutic-grade essential oils are great to have in your arsenal of health promoting natural products.

Previous newsletters highlighted the aromas best for the heart chakra: Angelica, jasmine, rose, geranium, and bergamot. There’s also lilac, lavender, orange blossom, neroli, and ylang ylang. For the heart chakra’s influence on the lungs try eucalyptus and peppermint, among others.

Scents that stimulate the third-eye chakra include: Hyacinth, Rose Geranium, Lemon, Vetiver, Basil (surprisingly relaxing), patchouli, rosemary, mint, and juniper, among others.

The crown chakra enjoys frankincense, lavender, and rosewood, among others.

Why not try a blend taking a favorite scent from all three categories?

If aromatherapy interests you, I use Young Living Essential Oils™ which are therapeutic, food-grade oils. Please inquire if you are interested in purchasing a favorite scent and I can add your request to my personal monthly order.

Gem therapy and the heart/thymus, third-eye, and crown Chakras: Gemstones amplify the energy when placed in contact with your chakras. For those of you unsure on this subject, consider that it’s scientifically proven that everything is energy. Nothing is really solid. Why wouldn’t the energy of a stone work effectively with the energy in our bodies just as some research speculates that the energy of computers, cell phones, and microwaves may affect our bodies? At the very least, I find that holding a favorite stone is like a talisman for me, or a “worry stone”. As my favorite author, Wayne Dyer, likes to say, “If it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take two”.

A quick review of gem therapy for heart and third-eye Chakras includes: Rose quartz, malachite, green tourmaline, ruby, green emerald and aventurine, among others, for the heart. Then there is Amethyst, Sodalite, Lapis Lazuli, Cat’s Eye or Tiger’s Eye, and Azurite, among others, for the third-eye.

Crown chakra gems include Amethyst, Diamond, and Alexandrite, among others.

If gem therapy interests you, you can find a great selection at www.crystallinelight.com or you can also link to her Web site from my links page at www.betterdayyoga.com. I’ve known Jennifer, the owner, for many years and love her products!

Yoga poses for stimulating heart/thymus, third-eye, and crown Chakras: As mentioned earlier, all yoga poses work each of the seven major chakras with specific ones addressing specific chakras.

A review of past newsletters reminds us that poses that open your heart center area include: Fish pose, Bow pose, Camel pose, Yoga mudra pose done while standing and cobra pose, among others. Yoga poses that stimulate the sixth chakra include, headstand prep/dolphin pose; and if headstand is in your practice, headstand pose, among others. Please refer to the archives of February and June newsletters for more: https://betterdayyoga.com/archives.htm.

Crown chakra yoga poses focus on pranayama, or breathwork. Yoga without the connection of breath awareness is simply a stretching practice. So a consistent yoga practice stimulates all the chakras, as does the many breathwork practices outlined in the current and past newsletters. Although not necessarily yoga, “dancing connects us with the higher realms of the divine.” And “Meditation can help you connect with your inner self.” The Book of Chakras, Ambika Walters. Hare pose, Half Shoulderstand as well as Headstand—if they are in your practice, are also stimulating to the crown chakra.