Today I would like less than 3 minutes of your time. 2:18 minutes to be exact. I want you take a deep breath in and big sigh out. Relax wherever you are and click on the image below. Press play, close your eyes and listen. Listen through your ears, all your senses and through every pore in your skin…
“A Call to Prayer” by Estas Tonne
Here and now before earth and sky we stand.
We feel the blessing of your infinite love in our blood. In our bones. In our breath. In our hearts.
We open our eyes to see beyond what we have seen before. We open our ears to hear what we could not hear before.
Beyond repetition. Beyond the beyond. We feel a new story emerging beyond ourselves and rippling into our lucid body.
As waves of love remind us of who we really are. Dissolve us into what we have always meant to be. And the layers between us and who we are meant to be, fade away. And suddenly we realize we are all we could dream we could be.
To see without eyes. To walk without feet. To fly without wings.
This is my prayer for you.
What was present for you when you received this prayer? I’d be honoured if you’d comment below and share your experience with me.
love & pranams,
“Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, and therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.” ~ William Shakespeare
Have you ever thought about what the difference is between seeing something you love, and knowing something that you love?
Or perhaps it’s better put, is it love if we put conditions upon our love, only loving if a person acts or behaves in a certain way we approve?
I just returned a couple of days ago from two phenomenal retreats in Mexico – my annual Yoga & Spirit Retreat in Sayulita and then a Cultural & Culinary Retreat in Oaxaca. Fourteen incredible days filled with adventure and abundant heart connections. I left Mexico feeling light, inspired and joyful.
And while my intention was to try and sustain this post retreat high for as long as possible, in less than 3 days I began to falter under the pressures of my long post trip to do list. How easy it is to fall back into habits that create contraction and tunnel vision. Anyone relate?
So today I took some time in front of my altar to sit, close my eyes and just breathe. And within just a few moments I could sense more ease and flow.
The breath is the thread that connects the body and the mind. When the breath is easy and expansive, then the mind and the body will also express these qualities. It can be easy to forget this – it happens to me all the time. But then I remember and with the next breath everything can change.
The term sthira-suhkam is often used to describe this state of being, where sthira means steady and stable and sukham means comfortable and ease-filled.
Whatever is happening for you right now, join me for a moment and become curious about your breath.
- Start with the exhalation. Watch the out-breath with an inquiring mind. What does it feel like? What does it sound like? Pay attention and practice watching until you know everything out your exhalation.
- Now focus on your inhalation, with the same level of curiosity.
- Stay relaxed. And simply observe your experience.
So now turn off your computer. Find a comfortable place to sit, maybe even with some sunshine. Close your eyes. Breathe. Repeat.
love & pranams,
Before we delve into something totally amazing, I want you to close your eyes and connect into your body. Take a deep breath in, pause for a moment and then let it out. Repeat a few times. Notice what it feels like.
When a breath enters our body, it brings in all the components of the surrounding air. This then interacts with all the cells in our body before being released back into the atmosphere. So you might see the logical link that breathing beings occupying a similar space will share part of the breath in some way.
But did you know that one of the components of air is the element Argon? It comprises only 1% of the troposphere which is the lowest layer of Earth’s atmosphere. But in that 1% is an astounding number of Argon atoms – about 3 X 10 to the 19th power. That’s 30,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms representing 60 trillion tons of Argon on the planet. And because Argon is an inert gas, it means that the amount we inhale is also the amount we exhale.
Astronomer Harlow Shapley has calculated that the Argon you have exhaled will cross the country within a week. A year from now those same atoms will have traveled the entire planet and 15 of those atoms will have made it back specifically to you.
But wait. It gets better. Shapley says that your next breath will contain 400,000 Argon atoms that Gandhi breathed during his long life, Argon atoms from conversations at the Last Supper, and from recitations by great classical poets like Shakespeare. Yes, that means that in your next breath, you are sharing Argon atoms once inhaled by Mozart, Buddha and the dinosaurs. We share the every human’s first and last breath. We inhale our ancestors and we exhale to all future generations.
So go ahead now and close your eyes again. Take a few more deep breaths in and out savouring this new knowledge. What do you notice? Has anything changed? Does the breath feel more sacred? Do you sense a deeper connection to all living things – past, present and future? Send me a note I’d love to hear about your insights and experiences.
love & pranams,
Many of you have heard the saying: “Listen to your body whisper so you don’t have to hear it scream”. Wise words but often not heeded. I’m sure we have all had instances where our bodies tried to tell us something wasn’t quite right, but we kept ignoring it and ignoring it until one day things fell apart and we had no choice but to pay attention.
Learning to get quiet and really listen is a skill and it takes practice. One of the reasons I love Yin Yoga so much is that it gives us this incredible opportunity to hear those body whispers. But you can really sit or lie in any position to begin the process of body listening – it is our intention to listen that is the most important. When we circulate our awareness, we increase energy flow and ignite realizations about what is going on, right here, right now. Interested? Let’s give it a try. For the next five minutes find a comfortable position and circulate your awareness in the following way:
- Close your eyes and relax. Then relax some more.
- Begin by attuning into your breath. Feel the inhalation. Feel the exhalation. Relax again.
- Scan through the body looking for sensation. When you find something, let your attention rest there, on the sensation, without doing anything else.
- Tune in – even deeper. What are the larger sensations? The not so large sensations. Can you sense even the very subtle ones?
- Can you allow yourself to just be simply curious about what is going on. Be present. Be with whatever is happening without any story or judgement.
- If that body part could talk freely, what would it say? Can you listen from a place of compassionate observation?
- What is the colour, the feeling, the texture, the sound of what you are experiencing?
- When you truly feel that part of the body has been able to fully express itself, thank it. Be sincere. Be loving.
- If you feel ready, tune in and scan again repeating the process. Take as much time as you need.
- When the process is complete, give yourself a minute to attune into the breath once more. Relax and notice how you feel – your whole being. Be aware of the change you’ve created – in both your body and your mind. Smile.