Tag Archives: Meditation

Dia de los Muertos Meditation

Come celebrate the Day Of The Dead with us! postcard-5.5inx8.5in-h-front

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Happy Full Moon Meditation

Harvest-MoonBe sure to enjoy the eclipse this evening with our eclipse full moon meditation here….

Looking to reboot, recharge, and clean out? Treat yourself to 7 days of delicious cleansing meals and much-needed detox self-care with our Fall Into A New You Detox Program.

Third-Eye Meditation

FY030GVB-PEACE-LOVE-OM-INDIGO-2-900x900Meditate with us at our new blog and open up your third-eye chakra with this wonderful meditation practice….

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Full Moon, Harvest Moon.

jeff-sullivan-via-mysticmammaCome celebrate the Harvest Moon and Fall Equinox with us at our new blog…

Photo: Jeff Sullivan

Jewel Of A Meditation

manipuraFor the month of July we’re highlighting the 3rd charkra, Manipura, which translates to “lustrous gem” in Sanskrit. This chakra is a vibrant lemon yellow located in our navel/solar plexus. It’s element is fire and function associated with this chakra is will, power, and assertiveness. The inner states and feelings paired with Manipura are joy, laughter, anger and ego. Physical malfunctions typically linked to a weak 3rd chakra are; ulcers, diabetes, hypoglycemia and digestive disorders.

This firey chakra is the seat of our self-esteem, ego, and will power. The will relates to our ability to do and see tasks through, especially when it comes to fulfilling personal desires, which we addressed last month with the sacral chakra, Svadhisthana. Manipura is considered the center of dynamism, energy, will power and achievement, which radiates prana (life force) throughout the entire body. It is associated with the power of fire and digestion, as well as with the sense of sight and the action of movement. It’s that uber optimistic voice and personal cheerleader in you that says “You got this. Let’s do it!”.

For today’s meditation we’re going to focus on the corresponding verb of this chakra: “I can”. Motivational speaker John Bradshaw states “the human will is intensity of desire raised to the level of action” and we couldn’t agree more with this statement. It’s like being gifted all the materials to build your dream home and all that’s required of you is the ability to believe in your self and a hard days work to see your vision come to fruition.

So before we begin our mediation take a few minutes to write and journal about what you would like to bring into your life – perhaps a life long dream of running a marathon or maybe learning to salsa. Whatever it the desire may be write it down. When you’ve committed to this desire begin to write down any associated fears you may have that prevent you from actively pursuing it. 0_largeFrom here turn some of the associated fears into positive affirmations and when you’ve written a positive statement for each fear find your comfortable seat. For this meditation practice start by envisioning a bright yellow sphere emanating from your solar plexus. Once your internal vision has locked it’s gaze on this blazing sphere begin to draw your internal gaze upward, imagine your prana moving up toward your third eye. Let it settle here and then take a few deep breaths as you visualize yourself taking action and fully participating in your desire. Continue to take deep inhales and exhales throughout your visualization. After a few minutes begin to release your internal gaze/vision and then with each inhale repeat to yourself “I” and with each exhale “can”. Repeat for 10 breaths.

Take note to how you feel when your meditation practice is complete. It may foster a sense of joy, excitement, and enthusiasm to not only take on your personal desires but may also leave you feeling like anything and everything is possible.

Chakra Source: Wheels of Life, Anodea Judith

Ins and Outs of Prana

6-Breathing-Exercises-to-Relax-in-10-Minutes-or-Less_0Humans have been known to survive for months without water and weeks without food yet die within minutes when deprived of oxygen. Respiration represents the power of prana, the ultimate expression of energy and life. When prana flows abundantly through our beings we become aware of a special glow to our skin and eyes, a spring to our step and the pulse of energy in every cell, vibrating vitality through every thought, word and deed. Conversely, an impeded or deficient flow of prana is marked by constant fatigue, dull skin and eyes and loss of enthusiasm. Breathing exercises are the easiest way to increase the flow of prana in our body and to unleash dormant prana.

What is Prana?

”As the spokes are attached to the hub, so on this life breath, all is connected”   – Ancient Indian treatise

In the ultimate sense prana is the subtlest form of all energies that permeate and sustain life in the cosmos. It is the underlying power supplying all universal forces allowing the ocean to surge, the sun to rise, flowers to bloom and the earth to revolve. The localized aspect of prana is the force uniting mind, body and spirit together known as the bio-energy field in humans. This flows from the spirit and is also absorbed from the atmosphere instantly through breathing oxygen and slowly through the colon with the transformation of food into energy.

Prana travels through our bodies via channels known as nadis, a concept similar to Chinese medicine’s chi, which travels along meridians. Absorbed through the medium of breath, prana has specifications on the respiratory, digestive, circulatory, cardiovascular, lymphatic and nervous system functions. Most importantly prana governs all the mental processes including thoughts, feelings, the will and reason. Longevity, health and vitality are all determined by the quality of prana flowing in our bodies. Taking in all this new information can be a bit overwhelming so now would be a good time to take a deep breath!

About Pranayama 

“As wind drives away smoke and impurities from the atmosphere, pranayama is a divine fire which cleanses the organs, senses, mind, intellect and ego.”      – BKS Iyengar

Pranayama is the art of breath control whereby the mental and physical state is brought to a harmonious state of health and serenity. It is a technique that increases, controls and frees the flow of prana throughout the entire body. The practice of pranayama brings awareness to the breath, which then connects us rapidly with our inner physical and emotional state.2786-22

Our relationship with life is mirrored in our breathing. When we’re nervous or excited our breathing becomes shallow, jerky and rapid. A relaxed, quiet state will create slow and deep breathing. Humans breath about 16-18 times a minute, inhaling about 13,000 litres of air every 24 hours. Due to exercise, anger, passion and anxiety the respiration rate increases, straining the heart and decreasing the life span. The slow, deep breathing and retention of breath in pranayama helps to compensate for the damage incurred by rapid, shallow breathing.

Pranayama also ensures a rhythmic harmony between the left bodily channel (ida) and the right bodily channel (pingala). This is important as these nadis govern opposite polarities in the body. Pingala which is stimulated by right nostril breathing promotes heat, masculinity, extroversion and digestion. Left nostril breathing stimulates ida which encourages cold, femininity, introspection and fertility. Roughly every hour our breathing shifts from one nostril to the other whereas pranayama encourages us to breath through both nostrils in order to maintain our bio-energetic balance.

Let’s Get Breathing!

For a beginner unfamiliar with pranayama please read the few guidelines below to help you set up for a healthy and sustainable pranayama practice.

 The full Yogic Breath

  1. Lie down on your back, placing your right palm flat over your lower abdomen and your left palm at the top of your chest. The palms help to monitor the wave-like motion of the full yogic breath.
  2. Exhale, emptying the air from your abdomen and chest.
  3. Inhale deeply feeling your abdomen fill with air and rise then your chest up to the clavicle should fill with air and rise. Pause when you feel you have inhaled to your full capacity then inhale further.
  4. Exhaling the chest will first lower as the air is expelled then the abdomen will empty and contract.
  5. Continue this for 5 cycles. Once you have achieved a smooth rhythm proceed to pranayama exercises. The full yogic breath is to be observed whilst doing all pranayamas unless stated otherwise.

Ujjayi Pranayama (Baby’s Snore)
Best time for practice: Before meditation, before bed, and during yoga

Method:
1. Sit in a comfortable position with a straight back and neck.
2. Place your hands on the knees and close your eyes.
3. Exhale through the nostrils emptying your lungs and abdomen of air.
4. Slightly contract the throat and breath in deeply through the nostrils, keeping your mouth closed, for the count of 4. This will make a ‘sa’ sound similar to the gentle snore of a baby. The abdomen and chest should fill and rise.
5. Hold your breath at the top for the count of 2 then straighten head and exhale through the mouth to the count of 4. A ‘ha’ sound will be made on exhalation.
6. Repeat this cycle five times.
Benefits:
1. Calms and focuses the mind.
2. Useful in respiratory tract disorders, hypertension, insomnia and fatigue.
3. Relieves nervous tension and anxiety

Guidelines for Pranayama

  1. The best time to practice pranayama is in the morning when the air is cool and the mind and body are fresh or at dusk.
  2. The bowels and bladder should be emptied.
  3. It is best to practice pranayama after exercises and before meditation.
  4. Find a secluded, quiet, clean, well-ventilated space, preferably free of insects.
  5. Sit in a comfortable position on the floor or in a chair with the back erect and the head straight. Vajrasana or sukhasana are good positions.
  6. A folded blanket, flat cushion or mat may be placed on the floor for comfort.
  7. Keep all your facial and bodily muscles relaxed.
  8. Close the eyes and rest the tops hands on knees.
  9. Breathe only through the nose unless stated otherwise.

This article was beautifully written from the folks at: Ayurveda Elements

Photos: Yoga Journal

Memorial Day Meditaion

memorial-day_s345x230Once known as Decoration Day, because tombstones were decorated with flags and flowers, Memorial Day is a time of remembrance and gratitude for those who have died serving our country in the armed forces, beginning with the Civil War and today in Iraq and Afghanistan and across the globe.  Many of these women and men did not choose to fight, and came to military service with grave reservations, but they nevertheless obeyed our leaders’ decisions and fought on our behalf.  Memorial Day is not a glorification of violence – and it is not a denial of the spiritual quest for global peace – but a time to remember and give thanks.

Regardless of our feelings about a particular war or military service in general, Memorial Day invites us to remember the sacrifices of others and the intricate interdependence of life. Memorial Day also observed as the celebratory unofficial kick-off to summer and the first of many summer BBQs be sure to take time during the weekend to honor the lives of friends, family, loved-ones and strangers around the country who have lost their lives with the below mantra.

Sat Siri Akal

meditating_woman_on_grassIn a comfortable seated pose begin your meditation with a few deep inhales and exhales. Once you mind becomes still begin to invite “Sat Siri Akal” into your breath. This mantra is quite beautiful and powerful as it speaks to the undying, eternal nature of our souls while honoring the physical loss of our loved ones. When we are grounded in the knowledge that the soul lives on we can feel peace for ourselves and our departed loved ones.

Complete Mantra:

Sat siree siree akaal, siree akaal mahaa akaal,
Mahaa akaal, sat naam, akaal moorat, wahay guroo

Translation:

The True Great, Great Deathless, Great Deathless beyond Death, Beyond Death, Truth is His name,  Deathless form of God, Experience of the Divine

Mantra Source: Spirit Voyage