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I’m not sure whether it is the change of seasons or the impending transitions of so many people that I love, but I have been feeling a little uprooted as of late. I generally love the energy of change, I welcome it. I find peace in the chaos and have learned to embrace transitions for the opportunities that they bring. As a creature of conditioning, I had to learn to love this feeling. I have moved more than 20 different times over the course of my life. Some moves were international, others just down the road, some moves were temporary and all moves involved some degree of packing and unpacking. Only in my most recent series of moves however, did I begin to appreciate the simple comfort that can come with developing roots wherever you go.
To balance this recent uprooted feeling, I have found great ease in a grounding yoga practice this week, awakening muladhara, the root chakra. Anatomically located at the base of the spine, this energetic center is the seat of emotional and physical stability promoting a healthy foundation for the remaining chakras.
One of my favorite ways to bring awareness to the root chakra is by practicing the variation of balasana (child’s pose) shown below. In this shape, the base of the spine softly rests upon that which grounds the body to the earth – the feet.
As requested, here is the playlist from my classes yesterday and today! Yesterday, we explored the idea of layers of small change that over time result in a profound shift both on and off the mat. That is the yoga. If your practice makes you feel a little more kind, a little more patient, a little more generous, then it’s working.
Jacki Carr of Rock Your Bliss recently started a conversation with their bliss crafting community by posing the following inquiry: “What question you grappling with right now?”
For me, the answer was easy, and it is something I grapple with often, especially as I move deeper into the study of yoga.
How do I liberate myself from attachment and stay connected to my authentic self?
Yesterday, I received a heart waking email from a dear friend who described her recent emancipation from fear and anxiety. She achieved this radical shift by declaring, “I am not my fear, I am not my anxiety, thoughts, etc.” And while I typically vibe more with positive affirmations, there was tremendous power in her “I am not…” statement. Detachment is shedding the ego to recognize that I am not my fear, I am not my pain, I am not my shame. However, the conundrum that I grapple with is, does detachment also mean that I am not my joy, I am not my peace, I am not my creative expression?
What lights me up is connection, to myself and others…so how do I experience that connection and at the same time, liberate my waking life from attachment? Are connection and detachment mutually exclusive?
Love and gratitude to Jacki for always stoking the fire of self inquiry!
The purpose of Global Mala (“mala” means circle or garland in sanskrit) is to unite people around the planet in collective movement with an intention for peace. This movement coincides with the UN’s International Day of Peace and auspicious season of the autumnal equinox. Global Mala was lovingly developed in 2007 by Shiva Rea, you can learn more about the worldwide movement here: www.globalmala.com.
Join us for a practice that completes 108 sun salutations in a continuous flow. You will be guided through 12 rounds of (7) Sun Salutation A and (2) Sun Salutation B. (Below are a few images that describe the asana of these salutations.) The practice will take 2 1/2 – 3 hours, please feel free to participate in as much or as little as you like. You may come and go as serves you best, practice asana or simply participate in the breath.
Please RSVP here: https://www.facebook.com/events/552960888142901/?ref=48
I recently re-read the poem below by Courtney Walsh and was again comforted by the shared quality of human-ness. Too often we get lost in our human-ness: our thoughts, our physicality, our internal critic. We forget how truly awesome it is that we are, in the words of Stephan Rechtschaffe, conscious of our consciousness. It is this extra “something” that allows us the exhilarating, albeit complex, freedom to be understood by other humans and to connect to the present moment.
And yet, our human-ness is temporary. It is a means for the universe to express and experience joy as “spiritual beings having a human experience.” (Pierre Teilhard de Chardin)
Dear Human: You’ve got it all wrong.
You didn’t come here to master unconditional love.
That is where you came from and where you’ll return.
You came here to learn personal love.
Universal love. Messy love. Sweaty love.
Crazy love. Broken love. Whole love.
Infused with divinity. Lived through the grace of stumbling.
Demonstrated through the beauty of… messing up. Often.
You didn’t come here to be perfect. You already are.
You came here to be gorgeously human. Flawed and fabulous.
And then to rise again into remembering.
But unconditional love? Stop telling that story.
Love, in truth, doesn’t need ANY other adjectives.
It doesn’t require modifiers.
It doesn’t require the condition of perfection.
It only asks that you show up. And do your best.
That you stay present and feel fully.
That you shine and fly and laugh and cry
and hurt and heal and fall and get back up
and play and work and live and die as YOU.
It’s enough. It’s Plenty.
The song the carried you away into sweet savasana was “Ahimsa” by Baird Hersey & Prana (not available on Spotify).