Saturday, October 15, 2016
In yoga the spine is considered the tunnel of consciousness. Along the spine we find the chakras and as we ascend each chakra from the root at the base of the spine to the top of the head at the crown we raise our level of consciousness from survival to enlightenment.
To begin we move up through the spine and past the primitive brain or the limbic system located at the base of the skull pushing the energy forward toward the frontal lobe or the point between our eyebrows known as the third eye. This is our intuitive all-knowing self.
Because of evolution our level of consciousness is higher than that of other animals. An easy way to describe this is when a dog is happy they wag their tail which is located at the base of their spine. When a human is happy they smile and laugh at the top of the spine. They raise their head and body upward. That is one reason we lift the spine in yoga. It is to open the tunnel of consciousness.
As the ego moves upward towards the higher chakras it begins to lose its importance. Now it looks to expand within its own consciousness not only its happiness, but the happiness of others.
The self-expanding ego thinks in terms of serving others rather than being served; it self-sacrifices for the good of many rather than sacrificing for its own good.
The epitome of this attitude is that of the warrior willing to sacrifice for the good of many – a selfless person willing to give his or her own life for the general good. Ideally this person is noble and self-giving. But sadly today many warriors and even political leaders are self-serving and aggressive. Which warrior are you?
The closer the ego approaches the higher levels of consciousness it begins to realize that even noble deeds are self-limiting when coming from ego consciousness. The ego separates us. The warrior then asks itself – how much good can I accomplish on my own. We all need each other to raise the consciousness of existence. So this week seek to raise your level of consciousness beyond the self-serving ego and like the mighty warrior do something good for the many.
Thursday, October 06, 2016
If we are to reach a higher level of consciousness and to change the course of our karma, we must begin with the desire to build the sacred vessel of relationship. The most sacred relationship is the relationship we build with ourselves. The problem is that most of us are quite self-centered and spend a lot of time trying to control others in an attempt to get what we want.
How we relate to the world is found in our own thoughts, perception, and feelings about the world around us. As we gain experience, we gain wisdom and this wisdom opens us up to new perceptions that will direct the actions we take as we relate to the world.
As we reaches out from a place of inner consciousness we may encounter others who have not discovered the sacredness of relationships. That is okay, because there is a realization that we are all one, even if some of us are still stuck in the self- centered egotistical view of the world. Everyone will experience the journey differently. However, there are certain common denominators we will all experience once we are consciously on the journey.
There will be daily practice (devotion) and conscious awareness of the process. There will be moments of inner silence and a gradual shift from intentions and actions that are outwardly based and focused on outcomes and time frames, to intentions and actions that are based on the inner journey. This naturally leads to more harmonious outcomes. As we shift to a place of balance and become more unified and harmonious our world reflects this inner peace.
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” The best way to transcend the continual cycle of karma is to become the very expression of life as a unified whole with divine nature expressed in all actions great and small. To do this we must build the sacred vessel of relationship.
Be clear about your intentions. Openness is required. Truth is fundamental. We must be committed to building the walls of the sacred vessel; openness, trust, and commitment; without these relationships cannot sustain their strength.
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Saturday, October 01, 2016
Take a moment and focus on any emotional or physical pain or disturbances that exist in your life. These exist on the periphery or the circumference and not at the center. Now let’s move closer toward our center. Slowly with deep long breathes begin to remove whatever is disturbing your peace. Let go of everything and find your center. It is a vast space of calmness. Here you will find your intuition. Here you will find the answers. If you penetrate deep enough to the center everything will disappear and you will be at peace.
Now project your center towards whatever has been giving you pain. You will begin to realize that even setbacks in life have their advantage. Seek your heart center. It is the place of compassion and understanding. Now project outward towards the center of your disturbance and you will know exactly what to do. Everything in life has a purpose. Sometimes what seems to be a disturbance is really a push to grow stronger, be more flexible and to establish balance. Let’s practice
When life hands you emotional and physical pain go to your center. Here you will find the answer. Nothing in life is permanent. Everything in life keeps moving and changing. But your center remains strong; it is flexible and maintains its balance. When you live from your center every situation in life will be tuned into an opportunity.
Namaste- I celebrate the place where our souls meet
Thursday, September 29, 2016
Can we predict the effect of every action we take? Should we search into our past lives for answers? Wouldn’t it be wiser to practice a little flexibility and be willing to move and flow as life dictates, while not losing sight of our vision? From here to there is never a straight line. It takes flexibility to navigate the twist and turns of life.
While it is not possible to fathom the full consequence of karma through our actions, we can choose how we envision our world and what we do each day. The actions we choose will have both short term and long term consequences. However, these actions will be influenced by the habits we have developed. Develop the habit of lying and each action we take in life will be marred with lies.
It is the awareness of these habits and how they influence our lives that is the determining factor. Change begins with stillness and the ability to reflect upon self. Who are you and what are you doing? As we come to know our inner selves beyond the influences of life, this knowing will have a profound effect upon the choices we make.
Choose wisely from the stillness of your soul. The choices you make will determine the path you take because life becomes what life does.
Saturday, September 24, 2016
Yoga is not a belief, it is not a faith. It is a discipline; a way of life. It takes discipline to practice yoga. That is because yoga means to live from the center of your being. At the center of your being you are balanced, flexible, strong and at peace. To get to your center takes work and that requires discipline. That is why we practice the tree. It teaches us to connect with our center where we find balance and grounded strength, while at the same time having the flexibility to sway and move with the changing winds of life.
The center of your being is without gender, color or creed. It is simply the center of your being. At your center if you hold still you will discover peace and serenity. But it takes conscious effort or discipline to find it. Let’s begin our practice.
You will come to understand yoga not through belief, but though experience. As the winds of life move you about this week draw back to your center and hold strong to your roots. It will take conscious effort. Inner peace is worth the effort. It takes discipline to find peace. This is yoga.
Namaste – I celebrate the place where our souls meet
Thursday, September 22, 2016
In our western society we often refer to karma as good or bad. But that predisposes judgment. Good and bad signify punishment or reward based upon our actions.
Karma however is pure action without any moral attachment. Karma yoga simply means cause and effect. So if you wish to change your karma you have to consciously work to change your actions. If you want to be healthy you need to consciously do things that support your health. If you are ill it is not because you are bad. For example: if you have arthritis, weak bones or high blood pressure it is most likely because of an underlying conditions that get exaggerated due to over use, diet and stress. We may not be able to change the situation, but we can change how we approach it. Approach life by knowing, that with the power of your thoughts, you can change the nature of your life.
Arthritis or any other health condition may be permanent and painful, but approaching it with an attitude of health by eating a healthy diet, exercising and getting plenty of rest is taking the action that will get you the results of a healthier and happier self. Because life becomes what life does.
If you don’t like your karma do something positive to change it. It is not about being good or bad. It is about accepting what comes our way and then the choices we make that turn bad karma into good karma. Make conscious healthy choices - Because life becomes what life does.
Friday, September 16, 2016
Right attitude is only the beginning of the spiritual journey. Although this is the beginning it can take lifetimes for us to achieve right attitude. To achieve right attitude we need to learn to listen not only with the ear, but with the soul. It’s not about listening to sound, but listening to the silent language of an inspired soul. The first Yama (abstinence) or non-violence is a good example.
Practicing Non-violence means to listen to your inner voice. If you can remain quiet you will perceive clearly any violence you create by inflicting harm on yourself or anyone else. Criticism, bigotry and anger are the sounds of violence. Violence begins in thought and projects outward through our words and our deeds. So the right attitude is to bring to your consciousness peace and serenity and with that bring non-violence to you, others and every aspect of life. We need to silence the chitta (meaningless chatter) so we can hear the sound of peace. That is the practice of yoga. Let’s begin by working through the chakras or our energy centers bringing them into balance by staying flexible and open and working on our inner strength.
Right attitude is only the beginning of the spiritual journey. Listen to your inner voice and if it should speak of violence,( criticism, bigotry or anger) silence it. Experience the peace within and continue on the journey towards spiritual enlightenment. It begins and ends within the depth of your soul.