It's one thing to be fed by any old thing; it is quite another to be nourished.
~Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés
October will stand out as one of the most powerful and pivotal months when we look back on this transformational year. A new season is upon upon us and the scales of balance tip toward longer, darker hours in the Northern Hemisphere. This is a time of paradox and reflection as it's about reaping the harvest of all that we "planted" in the Spring as well as experiencing a letting go and shedding of the old skins. In the Native American tradition, Autumn holds the position of the West on the medicine wheel and it represents the direction where one would go if you desire healing on a spiritual level. Its position relates to the setting sun, introspection, and developing the strength and stamina required to live in true connection to Creator. We have essentially been placed in this kind of retreat all year long and the energy continues to build as we navigate the final quarter of 2020.
We have three lunations this month with Mars (the planet of action and willpower) and Mercury (the planet of communication and thinking) both retrograde, making it extra internally oriented. This month is bookended with a full moon on the first and last day and the Super New Moon in Libra on the 16th. These will be days that you will definitely want to set aside and create some time for meditation, relaxation, purification and creative dreaming.
This is a month to focus on staying aligned with very high vibrational self-care practices to support the deeper inner work that will be assigned to you to complete. As difficult as it may sound, try to cultivate the opportunities to stay in the flow of joy, gratitude and heart coherence. Notice the temptations within or around you to fight, force, fix, or otherwise remain attached to suffering. The great big invitation this month: LET GO TO LIBERATE. Challenge yourself to perceive everything you're experiencing as an invitation to liberation. "This is here to set me free" can be the mantra. Trust that you are safe and that in your surrender, you will be met by Grace. Often times it's in the refusal to let go of our expectations and rigid tendencies to control outcomes that we actually block ourselves from receiving something much more nourishing. Be gentle, we are all in the gateway of the Unknown.
I invite you to join me this month in this inquiry: what does it mean to you to be truly nourished? Several years ago as I was creating my website and talking about its design and content with a dear friend, she asked me: "If you had to choose just three words to describe how your offerings support, help or serve others, what would they be?" After some time I said: Nourish. Create. Transform. This is the kind of alchemy that I enjoy exploring the most. It's what brings me alive and when I can enter the conversation in this way with another or others, it becomes pure, undeniable magic. It's a process that begins purposely with nourishing because without that foundational piece, it becomes very difficult for the unfolding of new creations and personal transformation. Of course, this isn't a linear process as we are always invited into the spiral dance of discovering entirely new levels within the journey itself.
If we are constantly overwhelmed, stretched thin, depleted and worn bare by the demands of our days then we won't have the emotional energy, mental clarity, or intuitive fluency for creation or transformation to be possible. Often, this is where crisis, illness or some other challenge enters our lives as an agent for awakening to change. This is usually the point in the story that I meet students or clients. Truly, it's precisely the juncture where we get to meet ourselves again if we are willing to take the opportunity. By feeling our exhaustion, facing our seeming brokenness and turning toward our suffering with tenderness and love, we allow ourselves the chance to find the Source of what feeds us most deeply: the warmth and Light of our own Soul. Nurturing that connection with ourselves is the greatest gift we can receive and through it we discover what truly nourishes.
Nourishment for me looks and feels like creating spaces that are beautiful, being in nature with my bare feet on the Earth or swimming or soaking in water. It's spacious, gracious, abundant. Some days clean, simple, orderly, quiet and refined. Other days less curated and more carefree or superficial. It's following this delicious prompt that my dear sister Wendy offers in her work: Let your desire counsel you. Most often lately it's slowing down, savoring and saying YES to what I truly desire in the moment. . . which is a yes to the weaving and welcoming of my hand-made life. Nourishing is allowing for all the parts and pieces to be stitched, knitted and braided into the tapestry of my design. Uniquely and beautifully my own creation; no better or worse than another~simply a reflection of my creativity. Daily life with the mess and miracles as my holy grail. It's the meeting of wonder at the crossroads of laundry, self-love making, dinner prepping, divine channeling, painting and poetry, asana and pranayama breaks, broken shower doors, co-parenting gymnastics, grief spilling over into memories or moments of pain, communing with the hawk that shows up in my backyard every single day, belly laughter at my son's incredibly accurate impersonations, inhaling the last remnants of baby in the skin of my 11 year old, aging parent appreciating, daily garden tending of my own longing. Leaving plenty of room for any of what I have planned to be improved upon or all together replaced by sacred surprise. Moments of supreme mystery interlaced and exchanged with the predictability of the mundane. This body and heart, herself, a cross+road for creative genius to build a home in exactly the way She desires. My nourishment looks like the sign next to my front door that says: LOVE. It's my invitation to myself, really, that means Live here, Love. Live here xo
I welcome you to consider what nourishes you and create your own signs, love notes or language for living it more fully this month. I also invite you to my new weekly class: Energy Yoga--a Kundalini fusion practice where, together, we will explore this theme of nourishment and see where it leads us! We begin Monday 10/5/2020 from 10:30-11:45 am EST at One Yoga or Zoom.
I am also available for private mentoring, healing, or coaching to support you in the discovery journey of weaving a new level of wellness, creativity, and self-care into your days. Feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a complimentary 30 minute session to determine how I can help.
Wishing you a deeply nourishing month and beyond~
“Nature loves courage. You make the commitment and nature will respond to that commitment by removing impossible obstacles. Dream the impossible dream and the world will not grind you under, it will lift you up. This is the trick. This is what all these teachers and philosophers who really counted, who really touched the alchemical gold, this is what they understood. This is the shamanic dance in the waterfall. This is how magic is done. By hurling yourself in the abyss and discovering it’s a feather bed.” ~Terrence McKenna
Welcome to September where the wheel of time turns toward the Fall equinox in the Northern Hemisphere, global energies are intensifying and we are being shown more clearly (with that 2020 vision) where and how we are called to choose a new reality. There’s this Chinese proverb: “If you ignore the dragon, it will eat you. If you defy the dragon, it will overpower you. But if you ride the dragon, you will know its strength and power.”
If it’s time and pressure that creates diamonds or disasters, we’re either going to crack under the weight of it all or we’re going to choose to develop our multi-faceted brilliance. I support the position of using whatever we’re experiencing personally as an opportunity for growth and expansion. It’s the grit that polishes the jewel. That perspective catalyzes movement from victimhood and helplessness in the face of so much chaos to a sense of empowerment with that which we have command: ourselves, our creative responses to life and the reality we experience as a result. This is what it means, I believe, to ride the dragon.
Surely if you’re reading this you are aware of this “paradigm shift” that we are being initiated into through this portal of planetary awakening. Eckhart Tolle wrote about this quantum leap in his book “A New Earth” while others call this current period “The Age of Light” or the “Aquarian Age,” as it’s reflective of a much longer cosmic, astrological cycle that lasts for roughly 2,000 years. We are in the midst of this great evolutionary change now. Much like a birth process, it’s not without moments of great possibility and promise as well as deep pain as the old systems are being dismantled and dissolved to make way for the emergence of the new order.
How can we more accurately understand the nature of the changes that are underway so that we can nurture our own process? What is this leap that we are called to make? Truly, it’s so much bigger than any of us can imagine, however I have been able to identify several key themes that will support you as a frame of reference. More than anything I share, please begin to develop the habit of going within to resource your inner wisdom as there is no shortage of information available and it is vital to be discerning and trust yourself above all. . . .
These are no small shifts and will take decades (and more) to actualize and implement into new frameworks and systems of support. We’re all being called to take responsibility for the creation of this new paradigm in the ways that we are each authentically guided. Holding this larger vision is vital as we can easily become overwhelmed and disheartened by what we partially perceive or actually experience day to day. Continue to make your daily self-care a top priority and connect with those who are invested in the birthing and building of the new. Spiritual practice is no longer a luxury or option--we must make it central in our lives. Trust that you are here as part of the Great Plan to support humanity in this monumental shift. Identify yourself according to the role you’d like to play in the writing of new scripts and storylines in this evolutionary exchange. Call on your Higher Self to guide you every day as you endeavor to live out your own lasting legacy of Love. Let go of what you think you “should” be doing and open up to the not-yet known within you…let yourself be amazed by what you discover as you make these leaps in your own life.
Get Up on your Dragon. This ain't your first ride. It could be your last of this kind, though. Make it your best.
Dare to dream the impossible dream.
Sending you many blessings xo
This month I offer you a gift of the first class of my 5 week series Energy Yoga: Activate Your Radiance. As it is a Zoom recording, the quality isn’t the best, but the intention is clear. I share a little talk about the reclamation of the Divine Feminine and a Kundalini practice to support you in being the Living embodiment of the LIGHT that you are. I look forward to sharing more in this way. Find it here: SAT NAM.
Welcome to August where while we feel stop and micro-movement starts in the outer world, we are discovering vast, new horizons within. If you've been showing up and doing your inner work, you'll know it's working when the things that usually have a "charge" and that used to throw you off balance, simply don't effect you in the same way. You've changed and that's very good news. Keep going!
A few months ago I gave myself a creative challenge. In response to the deluge of information being offered on-line, (much of which isn't relevant or helpful and some that is supportive for me) I decided to pull back from sharing my own perspectives and reading or subscribing or following or liking anything for a while just to quiet things internally. I made a commitment to create more content than I consume in any given day. During this time, I have been listening deeply for what really wants to be expressed through me. Some of it I am called to share while most of it has been just for me--for now anyway. I have been led back to inner child work, unraveling more layers of co-dependency, playing with my art supplies and writing. LOTS of writing. I've made several videos for my YouTube Channel. Oh and I have been cooking--I have discovered that I find great pleasure in chopping an assortment of vegetables to roast each week. I'm into simple savory plant based at the moment with as much fresh fruit as possible. My culinary creations have become a sacred act. Every Sunday I buy myself fresh flowers. Dancing happens everyday, no matter what. One of the most interesting things that has happened is that my yoga practice has shifted in a subtle, quiet, and profound way. And I have gone days with as little as a single downward dog. I can't remember the last time I've not done a full practice everyday. I'm an intensity junkie when it comes to all things consciousness. I want it in its purest form, straight from Source, rock my world, fast lane to Samadhi--no scenic detours, give me all the Oneness, NOW. Sidi, my spiritual guide, once said to me after I asked him ten questions in a row, "My love, you want to eat the apple in one bite!" That's right--I'm a very hungry student. I don't have time to waste and I want to maximize this finite existence to the fullest. Is there really any other way? Actually, yes, I am finding, there is.
While I'll always be wholeheartedly devoted to the path of awakening, I am learning to relax. Did you hear that? I have been practicing yoga and disciplined spiritual practice for more than 20 years and I am just now learning to relax! To soften and surrender more. Just a little less warrior and a bit more water. "Flow, not force" has become one of my mantras. Along with, "Rest in Presence." It's fine to talk about these things, but I am learning how to embody this feminine wisdom more fully. I have been mentoring with Queens. Really, I have...but that's for another post. So in my yoga practice I have been exploring this kind of balance and letting my Higher Self guide me to what kind of practice will best serve my body, mind and heart on any given day. It's expanding my intuitive felt-sense experience of yoga as "union" with the True Self. I receive messages for my own healing and for what I am called to create next. It's crystal ball clear. And so here I Am. Sharing with you. One of the wise messages I received recently when considering my future was this guidance: Your Light Paves the Way. Ultimately, it's not about what I say or don't say. . . do or don't do. Create or uncreate, even. It's about knowing who I Am and trusting that source spark of Divinity within me to lead. I imagine myself hurling that Light far, far into the distance ahead of me. Pathway lit AF. Now all I have to do is take a step and then another. From the Quantum reality perspective--IT IS DONE. So it is.
I continue to show up to my own creative process each day and I invite you to do the same. There are many ways that I can support you in your own journey. As I reflected recently, I realized that in the last 6 years that I have been working as a teacher, healer, guide and coach, I have helped all kinds of people--from Starseeds to CEO's, addicts to athletes, stay-at-home moms to soul-starved career women--heal, grow and discover their own authentic purpose and take the steps to actualize their visions in the world. Perhaps you want to feel better in your skin, heal the pain of a past wound that is still wreaking havoc in your life, learn to balance self-care with your service in the world, or summon the courage to focus on making your life-long dream a reality. Maybe you want to be a better leader or lover. Possibly, you'd like to learn how to just relax. I welcome you to receive the support that you need to be your best self despite outer circumstances or your own inner limitations. All of my services are available not only for your personal growth and transformation, but for your business as well. I teach corporate yoga both remotely and in person and my signature six week coaching series The Art of Fulfillment: Creating A Life You Love offers key creative principles that serve as essential building blocks for living with greater purpose and joy. I would be happy to discuss working with you personally or collaborating with your business. Feel free to reach out at email@example.com
Finally, I'd like to invite you to my upcoming series "Energy Yoga: Activate Your Radiance" beginning 8/17 at One Yoga and Fitness with a Zoom option. This will be a 5 week exploration that will weave Kundalini yoga and Divine Feminine Embodiment practices: think spirals rather than straight lines, balanced feeling and receiving, yin/magnetic energy with finer tuned focus and relaxing into process rather than rushing to completion; greater reliance on trusting how you receive intuitive guidance rather than outer authority or expert advice. Also included: Soul Astrology to honor the circular journey of the lunar phases beginning the week of the New Moon as well as journaling prompts to track how you are consciously using your precious energy everyday. Register for this series here
May you continue to connect to whatever illuminates your Soul and let that light pave the way!
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned,[a] but have not love, I gain nothing.
1 Corinthians 13
The Great Turning. A wake-up call of worldwide proportions. The coming to light of centuries of oppression, violence, greed and hate. Pandemic, protests and politics that have fostered virulent polarization are waging a war on humanity. From the disorienting and debilitating ironies and realities of being in global lockdown, labeled "essential" or not, coerced into public mask wearing and social distancing to the devastating tragedies of our black brothers and sisters being murdered in the streets--could it be any more apparent that we are witnessing the outrageous cost of remaining collectively unconscious, unable to breathe, work or live our lives according to our civil rights and sovereign dignity? We heard George Floyd's siren call out to the one that he hoped would save his life: MOTHER.
This monumental period of human history will now include HER-story. A great gift that 2020 is now revealing to us is the return and reclamation of the Divine Feminine back into our collective consciousness. We are being invited to remember what it is to respect and honor the sacred balance of life as all of creation contains this model of relationship between Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine as universal, complimentary creative principles. Indigenous and ancient wisdom traditions understood the necessity and inherent value of respecting both principles as they relate not only to our personal health and wellbeing but to the ecology of our relationships with each other, the plant and animal kingdoms and Gaia herself as a living library of consciousness destined for a particular evolutionary unfolding with which we are directly invited to participate.
Our current collective awakening is being deeply activated by the Divine Feminine Consciousness which has been silenced and subjugated for centuries because of patriarchal oppression where masculine principles have been misused and abused in order to gain control, profit and power over others while toxic agendas have depleted the planet's resources at an alarming rate. Humanity's addiction to enslavement, war and rape as a "normal" way of life is finally being recognized by many more people now for what it is: unjust, inhumane and completely insane. True healing often begins with a crisis, which is really a decision point in the course of an illness where we either actually change for the better or continue to suffer. At this very moment-- we all have that choice.
This is a pivotal cosmic portal that will support your awakening in miraculous ways if you decide that's what you want. We have astrological aspects at play that we haven't seen for hundreds of years. There is another way to live that will invite you to accept full responsibility as a powerful co-creator of your life. It will ask you to surrender all of your ideas about what is happening and why and to trust that it is all playing out exactly as it needs to. We are at a cosmic crossroads where timelines are splitting and some significant decisions must be made. In general, there is the choice to remain asleep or awaken, but more specifically there is the choice to participate in the fighting and dismantling of the old structures or to engage directly with the decision to practice higher-self mastery and engage with the process of personal and planetary ascension by being involved in the co-creation of the New Earth paradigm. Beyond right or wrong, every person must choose, authentically, for themselves. I am guided by a desire for the latter and will continue to dedicate my efforts and energy into restoring, remembering and reclaiming the body, heart, mind and soul of the the Divine Feminine back into this world.
I believe that the most revolutionary act we can commit now is to walk the way of Love by choosing to claim our divine birthright of happiness and to prosper in all ways. The choice to continue suffering and fighting in the name of justice, peace, or freedom isn't necessary. Your suffering won't help others suffer less. Instead, by fully claiming your own body, mind, heart and soul as a sovereign, free and divine creation and choosing to live in alignment with the qualities of your higher self everyday, you will be participating in the masterful art of your own self-actualization as well as contributing to the balance of the whole of creation through your own transformation. This way of walking the path of Love is ancient and encoded in the fabric of your own soul. When you begin to turn the details of your life over to your higher self, you'll be amazed by what doors open. You'll remember that you are from the future and that you came in order to birth this new paradigm. Everything you need to make this a reality is already inside of you. Legions of divine support (not to mention human beings) are with you assisting the living out of your legacy if you just ask.
The Divine Feminine way is one of softening and surrendering into the non-linear, organic unfolding of our inherent gifts and particular path of purpose. It's the way of creating sacred space for allowing, receiving and magnetizing rather than pushing, forcing or controlling outcomes. It's intuitive and intentional; more about resting into our power and relaxing the neurotic tendencies in favor of claiming and embodying our divine qualities. The sensual body and all of its functions are as sacred as the spirit that animates it. As I am led to more deeply practice, explore and evolve my own relationship to Divine Feminine Consciousness, I am being initiated into a new level of my awakening. Much is shifting and rearranging within me and while it isn't always comfortable, I am certain that I'm growing in accordance to the authentic prayer of my heart. The path of Love is intelligently designed to reconcile the Divine Masculine and Feminine into balance through Unity consciousness where each part contributes equally to the whole. Every being on the planet is invited and included to participate in this cosmic Love-Making as a unique embodiment of Soul in the ushering in of this next Golden Age.
At the end of last year I wrote about how this would be a year where quantum leaps in our spiritual awakening would be possible. I invite you to continue to open to those possibilities in your own life when you align with the highest and best within you. Vividly imagine the world you want to live in and commit to first making it a reality within yourself. Vibration matches vibration. How bright are you willing to burn? Let the incorruptible Light at the center of your being reveal the perfect next step and have the courage to take it. Trust your heart to show you the way. It is safe for you to live in the most sacred, beautiful and joyful ways. This is the age of self-initiation where it's entirely up to you to take your rightful seat on the throne of your own divine sovereignty and claim every single dream that your heart most desires. You get to choose the reality you most want to experience everyday. You are a very powerful creator and you're definitely not alone...
Know that SHE is here and the Goddess will continue to Rise. Unmasked and unafraid to get very close and personal.
SHE IS YOU.
I AM HER.
WE ARE ONE.
June is the midpoint of the year, and it affords us the opportunity to course-correct if need be, now that we can see the vivid expression of the seeds we have sown in the earth, as well as those that have been planted in our hearts and souls.
Often, June reveals to us what continues to be deeply meaningful for us in our work and family life. The beginning of summer mirrors back to us what is fulfilling, renewing, and nurturing to us—and what is not. What is not tolerated at this time is any situation in our work or relationships that has become a “should,” where we feel duty-bound. Whatever is not aligned or congruent with our integrity and heart is forced to be released at the midpoint of the year, or reassessed in its meaning to us.
Summer is my favorite time of the year. Another school year is over and the pace of life slows for couple of months to allow me to catch up with myself and those that I love. With less rigid time constraints and fewer obligations, I relish the natural unfolding of each day with more time to simply rest and be. Spending more time outdoors, connecting deeply with the elemental world, reading books, making art, being with my children in a state of relaxation rather than rush and languishing in a longer yoga practice are some of the rituals that I most savor.
Also, being that the year is half over, it is the perfect time to take pause and check in with where I am in relationship to the intentions that I set at the beginning of the year in my January dream time. Midyear offers the opportunity to come back into balance in whatever way(s) we have drifted off course. To identify the “shoulds” that are responsible for pulling us away from our true north and to let them go.
Fire is the symbol most often associated with summer. In its destructive form it allows us to release what no longer serves and in its constructive form it ignites us with our passion, realigning our heartfelt desire with positive action. The power of heat to transform is called “tapas” in yoga and it comes from the Sanskrit root tap which means “to burn.” It refers to that alchemical ability of fire to transform the lead of our ego identity with a higher vibrational form of energy more in alignment with our soul. Energetically this inner fire relates to the third chakra and is experienced as a “fire in the belly” that is often used to describe the qualities of will power, inner strength and disciplined determination that are indicative of inspired action. What is the state of your inner fire?
Coming back into balance at this time of year invites us to look at where we may be in need of more magnetic, feminine (yin) energy or dynamic, masculine (yang). Shifting our lifestyle habits to accommodate our needs can be a little easier during this time of year when taking vacations and time off are possible.
Take some time this month to do your own midyear reflection in order to help you take stock of what’s working and what isn’t. Here are a few questions to consider at this juncture:
*Where am I now? What is my current life like?
*What have been the highlights of the first half of this year? What celebrations or accomplishments can I name?
*What challenge(s) am I encountering? What “shoulds” can I drop?
*What is the growth opportunity that my challenge(s) are offering? (i.e. am I being called to greater balance, letting go, focus, faith, authenticity, self-compassion, trust, etc.)
*What is one practical thing I can do to step more fully into the growth? (i.e. create definitive work times and honor the boundaries when I am home, set up work-outs with a friend, meditate on my blessings for 5min. a day, or read a book that addresses my challenge, etc.)
*Review your heartfelt desire or intentions for the year. Do they still resonate or do you want to revise/update?
*Imagine yourself six months from now; at the end of this year-2020. What have you experienced or accomplished that you are most proud of?
***As a short addendum to this post (originally created in 2016), I'd like to acknowledge the tremendous, unprecedented challenges that this year has brought for everyone on the planet. Perhaps the highest intention you can make at this time is to attend simply and well for what is closest to you each day in order to maintain your energy. Adopt the "less is more" philosophy. I believe this isn't a time to push or force ourselves in ANY way but to do our best to balance our personal self-care needs with our greater service to others. I encourage you to make some time to relax and enjoy any opportunities to do the things that you love with the people that are most special to you.
May this summer bless you with a renewed hope and emerging vision for what's possible.
"ONCE THERE lived a metalworker, a locksmith, who was unjustly accused of crimes and was sentenced to a deep, dark prison. After he had been there a while, his wife who loved him very much went to the King and beseeched him that she might at least give him a prayer rug so he could observe his five prostrations every day. The King considered that a lawful request, so he let the woman bring her husband a prayer rug. The prisoner was thankful to get the rug from his wife and every day he faithfully did his prostrations on the rug.
Much later, the man escaped from prison and when people asked him how he got out, he explained that after years of doing his prostrations and praying for deliverance from the prison, he began to see what was right in front of his nose. One day he suddenly saw that his wife had woven into the prayer rug the pattern of the lock that imprisoned him. Once he realized this and understood that all the information he needed to escape was already in his possession, he began to make friends with his guards. He also persuaded the guards that they all would have a better life if they cooperated and the escaped the prison together. They agreed since, although they were guards, they realized that were in prison, too. They also wished to escape, but they had no means to do so.
So the locksmith and his guards decided on the following plan: they would bring him pieces of metal, and he would fashion useful items from them to sell in the market place. Together they would amass resources for their escape, and from the strongest piece of metal they could acquire, the locksmith would fashion a key.
One night, when everything had been prepared, the locksmith and his guards unlocked the prison and walked out into the cool night where his wife was waiting from him. He left the prayer rug behind so that any other prisoner who was clever enough to read the pattern of the rug could also make his escape. Thus, the locksmith was reunited with his loving wife, his former guards became his friends, and everyone lived in harmony. Love and skillfulness prevailed."
This Sufi story as told by Idries Shah seems very applicable for where we are this month. It happens to be the holy month of Ramadan. The traditional pilgrimages have been cancelled and mosques are empty for the first time in history. People all around the world, regardless of where they stand in terms of faith, fortune or (relative) freedoms are forced inside for a bit longer. Yet we feel the collective chomping at the bit for release and getting back to. . . whatever it is that we believe we have to go back to. This month I'm feeling the call to linger longer in the liminal spaces and to listen more deeply to what has been unearthed in my own Soul during this time. It has been quite profound and I'm in no rush to try and explain or figure anything out. This has been an incredible opportunity for all of us to awaken and to clearly see that to be controlled by anything outside of ourselves is a form of imprisonment and to consciously choose to create a life that truly sets the Soul free requires a responsibility to do the necessary work. I'll be continuing to pray, to work and to make and offer the keys that serve my deepest truth.
Here is your proverbial prayer rug, dear one, may you recognize what sets you free.
On the Aries New Moon last month I shared an intention setting practice that I have been engaging with over the course of the last 4 years. The cycles of the moon reflect our own creative cycles. We can think of the breath cycle as mirroring the phases of the moon with the beginning of the inhale signifying the new moon, the building of the in-breath the waxing of the moon, top of the inhale as the "maxing" or full moon, and the exhale the waning moon which returns us to a new breath cycle.
While the new moon time is fertile ground for setting intentions and initiating our creative ideas, the full moon is a time of illumination and healing. During a full moon the sun and moon are in opposition to each other which potentially highlights where we might also be experiencing our own opposing, limiting, self-sabatoging tendencies. The sun as our "conscious" mind and the moon as our "unconscious" emotions are facing off, thus making it a lot easier for us to see what we might normally prefer to keep hidden from view. Statistics show greater incidences of crime and emergency room traffic during full moons. The word "lunacy" originates from this idea that people are a bit more unstable at the time of a full moon.
Become aware of how you are feeling in the days leading up to and on the full moon. Do you feel like you have more energy or less? Are there any emotional triggers that have become apparent? What are the underlying issues that they are amplifying? What is the quality of your mental state? Are your thoughts complementary to your higher self or magnifying ego or fear? I suggest making some notes about what you are experiencing to better help you work with the energy.
This month we have a Super Full Moon in Libra on Tuesday April 7th. It will be the strongest, closest moon of the year! That means you may be feeling extra sensitive. As quarantine life wears on us all it may feel cruel to have this much happening at once. "Corona virus has ruined my life!" as my 11 year old daughter said when we had to cancel her birthday plans recently. Perhaps you're feeling a bit the same way. . . . When I asked her what else the virus has ruined she named several things from going to stores (or anywhere!), playing with friends and even going to school. Each day she continues to identify and name what she misses and she's afraid it will be a really long time before we're able to enjoy those things again. I get it. We're all experiencing this frustration and fear to some extent. Crisis has its way of pulling out the best and worst of us. As practitioners on the path of awakening let's be careful not to turn our pain into pathology by making ourselves "bad" or "wrong" for feeling all that we do. But let's not shy away from our vulnerability or fear either. We can use it for our continued healing and transformation.
I feel that the medicine for this moon is COMPASSION. Libra is ruled by Venus and points us to balance in partnerships--negotiating the dance between caring for ourselves and nurturing our relationships. How can we use what we discover in our self-reflection to serve the heart of another or others? When we are tempted to judge or be critical of another for how they (or we) are managing in crisis, let's instead practice being compassionate and remember that what we actually know about someone is minuscule in comparison to the reality of what they have lived and are currently living. Everyone is suffering on some level and when we can attend to our own suffering with loving-kindness we can, as Pema Chodron says, "recognize our shared humanity."
This is the time to turn toward whatever is surfacing and allow the illumination to lead you to letting go. A simple ritual of release is enough now. Nothing fancy or complicated. What is ready to be released, forgiven or healed? You don't have to dig deep--it's often in plain view at full moon time. Write it or speak it out loud and ask for the divine support to be provided to assist you in your process. Realize what a blessing it is to have access to the tools that you have been given. Continue to use them to nourish yourself, your loved ones and as a service to those who are suffering. Whatever you choose to heal at this time helps us all. This, too, is what it means to be a powerful creator. What we create or heal within us is our greatest service to humanity because healed people HEAL others.
I was moved by this prayer that Brene Brown shared and invite you to incorporate it into your ritual:
For those who are sick. For those who are bereaved and supporting the bereaved.
For those of us who are anxious and afraid.
For those of us feeling alone and isolated.
For the medical professionals and health care workers around the world.
For those who have jobs that put them at risk and can't afford to miss a day's work.
For those of us who are especially vulnerable to infection.
For those who are confined to home but not safe at home.
For the children who need the safety and care of school and those that serve them.
For the teachers who continue to foster connection and learning in new and challenging times.
For the scientists and researchers dedicating their lives to helping us--many of whom are under pressure and underfunded.
For our leaders. May they find the strength and courage to lead with their hearts.
For YOU and me--doing our very best.
Sending you many blessings as you journey with consciousness, courage and compassion.
I wish I could introduce you into the energy of April with a warm, sweet, hush-toned welcome. But that wouldn’t serve the reality of what is moving through our lives at this time. The download that I received near the end of last year is that 2020 and the next few years to follow will serve as critical turning points in our collective awakening. The big picture isn’t doom and gloom though—it’s hope and possibility with a large dose of commitment and discipline to our personal agreements to serve our dharma (not the distractions or drama) everyday. There isn’t going back to “normal.” There is evolving into the next stage of our journey. That’s why this is the year for us to choose ascension. We are being invited to participate in the transforming of ourselves in order to birth the new planetary paradigm. I like the question Rev. Michael Beckwith asks us to consider when we are called to endure challenging times in our lives: if these circumstances weren’t going to change anytime soon, what within you would you need to develop or strengthen in order to adapt?
As this month begins I am remembering preparing for the birth of my first child almost 14 years ago now. I had a wonderful pregnancy and marveled everyday at the miracle of carrying another growing human being inside of me. Like most expectant mothers, I had a plan for how I wanted the birth process to unfold. I envisioned the birth as I hoped it would occur. I savored the time to create a space for him in our home, picked out tiny clothes and read all the books on how to transition into life with a newborn. It was a beautiful, blissful time. However, being pregnant, actually giving birth and then caring for a baby are all very different experiences.
Like all of us engaged with the creative process of life, I was subject to multiple circumstances that were out of my control. Just before the due date I was thrown a mighty curve ball that I caught in the best way I knew how at the time and made the decision to be induced a few days early. What ensued was a more than 24 hour ordeal that left me physically exhausted from laboring and pushing for so long. It became clear that my son’s life was in danger and a C-section would be necessary. I felt utterly defeated when faced with the reality of what I had to do. I would have continued to push for another day if it meant having my son naturally because it’s what I desperately wanted--that was my plan. Given the fact that his life was in danger, I complied with what needed to happen to deliver him safely to the world. Among the many other things that birth process gave me, it taught me that while we are responsible for what we create and nurture, ultimately we are called to surrender our agendas and plans for exactly how those creations are meant to actualize. There is a greater plan to which we are all subject. The humbling truth: just because I can carry life doesn’t mean I control it.
The awakening and full embodiment of our Soul into this human life is a birth process. It’s a gritty journey, not for the faint of heart. There are definite light filled expansive periods of bliss and joy. We will feel renewed and like we are “in love” even when there isn’t an object for that Love. We’ll experience our depth, power and beauty and the miraculous blessing of being alive. It seems as if everything is effortlessly unfolding as we step.
Then there are seasons of contraction and darkness marked by pain, confusion and questioning if anything is really happening at all. We’ll doubt ourselves, become overwhelmed by how much work there is still to do and be tempted to give up all hope. It will feel like we are dying because we hardly recognize ourselves anymore. It seems as if we are laboring without any sign of reward. But it’s through this process that we are re-born again and again so that we can become our most authentic selves. There is a wisdom and intelligence to the process that is not a part of our egoic control mechanisms. We labor and push until the time comes for us to surrender to forces greater than us.
April is my birth month and my birthday is also Earth Day. This has become a single day of the year where we consider our precious planet and how we care for our Mother. Some also celebrate Passover and Easter this month—symbolically a season of salvation, rebirth and resurrection of the Son/Sun. Along with a super full moon in Libra (the scales) and a new moon in Taurus (the Earth spirit), this month highlights and activates a more refined connection to and integration of matter and spirit, death and rebirth, self and other, stability and variability—balancing these aspects within and without.
What if we viewed EVERY DAY as our “birth”day and a day to honor our connection to the beauty of the Earth, the sacredness and sustainability of the natural world and renewal of our resources? What if we take the collective curve balls we are thrown and receive them with consciousness and care to do our part to midwife a new way of life? How can we be reborn and wear the Crown that we not only survived Corona, but have become a new creation through the ordeal?
This is a month for continuing your self loving and spiritual practices, caring closely for the few you aren’t meant to be distant from and listening more acutely for what matters most to you. Let us commit to going deeper within to get to the root of why we are here. It’s from this place that a new vision for a new earth is birthed.
I invite you to join me this month in this contemplative practice. Each day read the following passage by Rumi:
“THE ONE THING YOU MUST DO”
There is one thing in this world you must never forget to do. If you forget everything else and not this, there's nothing to worry about, but if you remember everything else and forget this, then you will have done nothing in your life.
It's as if a king has sent you to some country to do a task, and you perform a hundred other services, but not the one he sent you to do. So human being come to this world to do particular work. That work is the purpose, and each is specific to the person. If you don't do it, it's as though a priceless Indian sword were used to slice rotten meat. It's a golden bowl being used to cook turnips, when one filing from the bowl could buy a hundred suitable pots. It's like a knife of the finest tempering nailed into a wall to hang things on.
You say, "But look, I'm using the dagger. It's not lying idle." Do you hear how ludicrous that sounds? For a penny an iron nail could be bought to serve for that. You say, "But I spend my energies on lofty enterprises. I study jurisprudence and philosophy and logic and astronomy and medicine and the rest." But consider why you do those things. They are all branches of yourself.
Remember the deep root of your being, the presence of your lord. Give yourself to the one who already owns your breath and your moments. If you don't, you will be like the man who takes a precious dagger and hammers it into his kitchen wall for a peg to hold his dipper gourd. You'll be wasting valuable keenness and forgetting your dignity and purpose.”
Let it land in your heart, your body, your mind, your soul. Is there a word or a line that stands out for you? Write it down. Then walk with the inquiry: “What is the one thing I must do?” Simply allow for the question to lead you forward on your personal quest each day; each moment and commit to doing that one thing.
I am practicing and praying; laboring and loving alongside of you everyday. I remain creatively and consciously committed to the path as it presents itself and celebrate every chance I get to participate in the unpredictable play of being alive to see another year.
May you be given all that you need for your journey.
I love you. 💜
*On a logistical note: over the past several weeks I have been working to update my technology and educate myself on how to create and offer online classes. The learning curve has been tremendous but I am finding my way and will continue to share yoga practices, musings, and anything else I am inspired to offer to support your continued healing, growth and evolution. Find me on YouTube here
The energy moving into the beginning of March has us re-evaluating what we packed and had planned for this 2020 journey. I'm the kind of traveller that likes to think of everything I may need for the trip ahead and I'm great at considering every possible weather condition or dire circumstance that I may find myself in order to make sure I have a travel sized remedy to account for what may unfold. Needless to say, I usually (always) find myself packing way too much and over the years I have learned (am still learning!) to rely on and trust in just the essentials.
I am intrigued by those that embark on modern day pilgrimages like hiking the 500 mile Camino de Santiago from Southern France to Northern Spain. Also known as "The Way of St. James," this pilgrimage follows the steps of the Christian saint to arrive at the place where his remains are buried. I recently re-watched a documentary on the pilgrimage and was moved by how many of the pilgrims (who carry everything they need on their backs) quickly found that even they packed too much and had to lighten the load that they were carrying in order to continue the journey more comfortably. Isn't this so counter-cultural? We believe that we need more in order to be comfortable, satisfied and fulfilled. Most of us are traveling with way too much and wondering why we aren't enjoying the adventure!
This month we welcome in the beginning of Spring with the equinox on March 19th--a time of renewal as the days begin to grow lighter and longer. How much is really enough for you? What may be distracting or weighing you down now and can be released or recycled? What or whom qualifies as essentials for you? If you were to focus on one or two specific goals or intentions in this new season what would they be?
This month experiment with me by simplifying your life in order to maximize your precious energy so you can enjoy your life and focus on what you love!
This month's offerings at One Yoga and Fitness to support you in lightening up:
*Kundalini Yoga Mondays 10:30-11:45 am. This month's Kriya will focus on cultivating NAVAL POWER which not only effects your physical core strength but also activates your energetic will power, sense of worth and balanced self-esteem. The meditation I have chosen is to empower your CAN DO spirit as it "gets rid of the couldn't." Here's what Yogi Bhajan says about this meditation: "Do you remember when you wanted to come to class and you said "I couldn't"? Do you remember when you wanted to get up in the morning and be with your God and instead said "I couldn't"? Do you remember when you wanted to love and be with somebody and decided "I couldn't"? All the problems on this planet come from this "couldn't." It gives us a slip from our dharma, from our destiny. We need to make our will so clean, clear and positive that "couldn't" does not touch our shores."
*Full Moon Flow and Gong Bath: Sunday March 8th, 7:30-8:45 pm. We have a SUPER moon in Virgo and then Mercury will be going direct. Honor where you've been in this last month and prepare yourself for a new beginning. Spring and Aries season usher in a new astrological year.
*An Introduction to Kundalini Yoga: Saturday March 28th, 12-2 pm. Join me to learn more about the fundamentals of this ancient technology for transformation. We'll discuss the concept of "Kriya" and the specific uses of breath practices, mantra repetition, and mudras (hand gestures) to awaken the life force energy and balance the brain and body. For more information or to register go to One Yoga and Fitness.
Practice using the simple "feather" and "lead" technique when moving through your days. Notice the thoughts, choices, activities that feel heavy and those that offer more buoyancy and ease. Practice choosing according to what feels lighter and more spacious.
Wishing you a magical March that connects you to the rhythm of your heart's JOY.
February is a leap year month and offers us the opportunity to take another step into the NEW creation that we are aligning with in 2020. One of the distinct challenges on the awakening journey is the "one step forward, two steps back" feeling that we experience as we are working to strengthen a new level of embodiment. It takes time to stabilize the next level and often the old wounds and triggers will appear in order to be metabolized more completely. This is natural part of the process and there will come a point when the new form will stabilize and feel much more natural.
This month I want to touch on the subject of emotional health because I see many people struggling with how to deal with their difficult feelings. There seems to be a belief perpetuated in some spiritual systems that being "awakened" or "evolved" means that you are no longer subject to strong emotions. In our transcendence we become unfeeling. This is simply not true. Actually, I see it as the same character wearing a different cloak: fear. Fear of facing the feeling and becoming overwhelmed. Fear of being weak. Fear of whatever is on the other side of fear. Fear of the unknown. It's one of the major factors in addiction, in general, and the root cause of the opioid crisis that we face as a nation, more specifically.
Being ascended, evolved or spiritual doesn't mean that we don't feel or have emotions across the wide spectrum. It's discovering how to feel and allow the emotion as energy (neither "good" or "bad") to simply move and be expressed freely and safely. It's about learning to relate to our emotions as pathways for becoming whole, conscious beings rather than clinging to the stories that the emotions are tied to. On the path of mastery we are learning to become the alchemist, the one who is able to transmute any energy into a higher octave. We use the lead of the emotions to create the pure gold of creative consciousness.
How can we begin to do this? Here are three simple steps to get you started when you feel either numb/disconnected or emotional/commotional:
Sacred space for your self-care. Make the time to check in and see if there are any emotions that need to be cleared. I make this a daily habit, just like brushing my teeth. Find a quiet place to journal, meditate or reflect to become aware of how you are feeling. Much of our emotional trauma can be directly related to the inner child spirit that we have abandoned. As we mature, the responsibility to parent ourselves is one of the first priorities on the healing journey. The inner child is not meant to run our businesses or households, or to be a lover or even a friend. The inner child is simply there to be loved, cherished and nurtured back to health and well-being. Feelings aren't meant to be fixed. They are meant to be felt.
Cultivate a stable center. The practice of yoga teaches us this invaluable skill of building strength and concentration while remaining flexible and relaxed. In order to experience the safety to feel your feelings fully you must first build a solid container in your body awareness. One of the ways you can do this is by bringing attention to the alignment of your spine and experiencing the very center of your body by visualizing a wide pillar or column of light from the base (the floor of your pelvis if you are sitting or your feet if you are standing) to your crown (the top of your head). Practice breathing long, slow, deep breaths up and down the length of your spine to begin to strengthen your connection to your stable center. Try making this a daily practice for at least 3 minutes.
Find your groove and move! Now activate your inner alchemist and ask: how does this emotion want to be expressed? Trust where and how the energy wants to move. Dance, cry, shake, curl up in a ball, go for a walk, laugh, whatever feels authentic. If you feel stuck, just begin to breathe deeply and allow for some sound to be expressed. Breath, movement and sound are keys to moving energy and transmuting them in any moment. You can't do it wrong! When you feel complete, take a few moments to place your hands on your heart and be still. Honor yourself and then be willing to let the charge of the emotion go. You can command: "I now willingly and gratefully release any and all attachments to this emotion. Thank you."
Having a committed daily practice is the most valuable thing you can do to support yourself in maintaining a connection to your meditative presence and authentic power. We don't just practice for what we experience on our mats or in the yoga studio, we accumulate time in our practice so that we can live the rest of our lives from a place of deep knowing that whatever comes our way, we will navigate it with Grace.
Here are a few of my offerings to support your journey this month:
Thank you for engaging in my work in any way. . . .
Many blessings as you transmute, transform and open to more of your potential everyday!
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