Ayurvedic Rituals To Help You Stay Grounded & Embrace Change This Fall

from mindbodygreen

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According to Ayurveda, as the seasons change and fall arrives, Vata Dosha increases. Fall is a time of change, instability, and sensitivity, and keeping your Vata Dosha in check is key to staying healthy through fall and winter.

What is Vata Dosha?

Vata has many positive aspects. The combination of air and space is mobile, creative, light, airy, great for communication between people as well as the communication with the internal environment inside our body. Vata is what makes our systems move and flow. It’s the poetic phrases of the writer and storyteller. It’s the fantasies of the artist that are expressed through paintings, collages, or metal. It is the cool breeze and dry deserts.

But everything in moderation. When Vata increases excessively, it dries out our tissues. It creates wind in our bowels, manifesting as constipation and bloating. There may be a lack of appetite, too — either from the digestive upset or because the creative mind has become too anxious and worried to eat. People with deranged Vata can feel unstable, unbalanced, and ungrounded. People with deranged Vata are the daydreamers who cannot connect to daily life with the people and environment they live in. They become flighty and changeable, maybe unable to sleep.

Although some people have more Vata Dosha, air, and wind in their constitution, we are all susceptible to an increase of Vata in fall. Fall is the season of change — just like Vata. It shares the same air and spacelike qualities. And fall is indeed changeable — one day there’s rain; on the next there’s sunshine, it’s windy, and we observe the season change from summer to winter. The leaves of the trees change color.

We cannot change our external environments, but we can balance our internal environment through our daily routines, diet, and herbs.

 Vata is dry, light, irregular, rough, mobile, cold, quick, and changeable. To reduce Vata, we reduce those qualities in our daily lives and routines. We can also start to complement with opposites to calm any excess. The dry, rough, and light qualities can be reduced with oils, ghee, and milk.

Here’s how you can find balance

Diet:

Reduce any dry, light, and cold foods. This includes raw salads, fresh juices, and cold foods straight out of the fridge. Many cereals share the dry, light, and rough qualities of Vata when eaten with cold milk as breakfast.

Instead, start eating warm, cooked meals. Nourishing foods such as kitchari, casseroles, or soups are perfect Vata-reducing foods. They are easy to digest, too, for the sensitive Vata digestive system. Add warming herbs such as ginger, cumin, cloves, and cinnamon. Adding ghee or oil to your meals is an excellent way to reduce the dry qualities of Vata. These ingredients oil up the digestion and any dry skin.

Lifestyle:

The spontaneity and excitement of Vata can have many benefits, but an excess increases Vata Dosha. Too much traveling, movement, and change increase the quality of mobility and change. Especially air travel. We can consider how we choose to travel, and if we can, find ways to do so in nature with the feet on the ground. Internet surfing, social media, and emails all increase Vata.

Fall is a good time to reduce those activities — or at least do them during the earlier part of the day so they don’t influence your sleep.

Start waking up and going to bed at the same time. One of the best Ayurvedic ways to calm and nourish excessive Vata is with Abhyanga, or self-massage. Use a warming oil such as sesame or a specific Vata-reducing massage oil. Apply it firmly to the body before your shower. If you can’t make the time for a full-body massage, apply the oil to your feet before bedtime.

The oil counteracts the dry, rough qualities of Vata. When applied to the skin, the skin gets soft and smooth. But the qualities enter the Dhatus, our tissues, and our whole being. Massaging your skin also grounds and calms down an anxious mind, moistens cranky joints, and soothes a sensitive Vata digestion. To stay grounded, get out in nature, put your feet on the ground, and breathe.

Living Ayurvedically simply means to live in balance with our internal and external environments. We learn to listen to our bodies and how they respond to the time of day, the seasons, our food choices, and our lives in general. Take time to check in with yourself, breathe, and enjoy staying in the flow of continuous change.

 

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Understanding your Chakras

great piece from forever conscious

chakras

The word chakra means energy vortex or wheel and according to Ancient Indian philosophy we each have seven chakras that manage the energy of our body from our spine to the top of our head.

Each chakra plays a role in establishing our overall health and well being. For optimal health, these energy wheels need to be aligned, clear and balanced. It is believed that when these energy centers are imbalanced that physical and emotional disturbances occur.

The seven chakras each have a specific purpose and control both physical and emotional aspects of the body.

Root Chakrais our grounding chakra. It begins at the base of the spine and grounds our soul to our body. This energy centre is responsible for protecting the spinal column, the rectum, legs, bones and feet. Emotionally it ties to survival, stability, acceptance, self preservation, perception, fear and safety.

Traditionally, the root chakra is associated with the color red and red crystals such as rubies, garnet and red jasper, as well as red foods and art can be used to heal this chakra.

When the chakra is out of balance, issues such as sluggishness, tiredness, obesity, hoarding, materialism, greed, fear of safety, inability to deal with change, lack of discipline and financial difficulty can occur. Physical dysfunctions can also occur such as bowel disorders, bone or teeth issues, lower back pain, depression and lack of energy.

When the root chakra is balanced, feelings of good health, vitality, being well grounded, trusting the world, feeling safe, stable and secure will prosper.

This chakra can be upset by birth trauma, abandonment, physical neglect, a poor relationship with the mother, malnourishment or inherited traumas such as living in war or poverty.

In order to heal this chakra it is recommended to get exercise, massage the lower abdomen and spine, reconnect with your body and accept yourself.

A Mantra for the Root Chakra:

“I feel grounded and secure in my body, I trust the universe and know that I am looked after. I am supported, safe and loved by mother earth.”

Sacral Chakrais located in the lower abdomen and rules over sexuality, emotions, creativity and financial matters.

It is associated with the color orange and crystals such as amber, citrine or even orange foods can be used to enhance the energy of the sacral chakra.

This chakra helps to balance our sexual organs, intestines, lower vertebrae, kidneys, pelivis, appendix, prostate, hip area and our lymphatic system.

When the energy of this chakra is excessive, sexual addiction can occur as well as strong or sensitive emotions, seductive manipulation, attachment and addiction and emotional dependency. When the energy is deficient, issues such as poor social skills, fear of sex, lack of desire and passion, denial of pleasure and unwillingness to change can occur.

Physically when this chakra is out of balance sexual dysfunction or reproductive issues occur as well as urinary problems, digestive issues, spleen issues or appetite control issues.

Often this chakra can be upset by sexual or emotional abuse, manipulation, alcoholic parents, denial of feelings and neglect.

A Mantra for the Sacral Chakra-

“I acknowledge and accept my sexuality and give permission to myself to feel all that I feel. I understand that I deserve pleasure in life and I am comfortable with who I am.”

Solar Plexus Chakrasits below the diaphragm and controls feelings of power, self-esteem and our relationship with our inner self.

Represented by the color yellow, crystals such as citrine, yellow topaz  and tiger’s eye, as well as yellow foods or flowers can be used to heal this chakra.

Physically, this chakra looks after our respiratory system, our stomach, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, adrenals, the lower back and the nervous system.

When the energy from this chakra is unbalanced issues such as poor self esteem, fearfulness, poor self discipline, aggression, feeling power hungry, or the need to be in control, feeling like a victim, blaming others or being overly competitive can occur.

When this chakra is balanced, feelings of inner harmony, self acceptance and respect for others can be felt.

When out of balance physically, digestive problems, colon and intestinal problems, ulcers, anorexia, pancreatitis, diabetes, gallstones, allergies and liver or stomach issues can occur. A constant feeling of coldness can also be felt.

This chakra is usually effected by physical abuse, fear of punishment or shaming, living in a dangerous environment, feeling shameful of oneself or living in a dominating household or society.

In order to heal this chakra, it is important to deal with any self-loathing issues, or feelings of needing to be in control. Abdominal exercises and vigorous exercise can also help.

A Mantra for the Solar Plexus Chakra:

“I honor the power within me and know I hold the answer to my own destiny. I release my built up emotions and claim my personal power.”

Heart Chakra: this chakra rules the heart, cardiac system and chest. It also governs love, forgiveness, relationships, loneliness, depression and devotion.

The heart chakra is associated with both pink or green and can be supported by rose quartz, emerald and jade crystals or pink and green plants.

This chakra looks after the circulatory system, lungs, shoulders, arms, thymus gland, immune system and upper back and when imbalanced can lead to disorders in these areas including tension, breast problems, asthma and allergies.

Energetically, an imbalance in this chakra can lead to being demanding, jealous or possessive in relationships or anti-social, withdrawn, shy, judgemental, depressed or bitter. A fear of intimacy or relationships can also occur as well as over sacrificing oneself in relationships.

Traumas such as rejection, abandonment, loss, abuse, grief, divorce, death, feelings of not being loved and betrayal can harm this chakra.

When balanced, the heart chakra helps to promote compassion, self-love, empathy, peace and a good immune system.

In order to heal this chakra, one must learn to forgive, practice unconditional love and learn the true value of compassion and co-dependency.

Breathing exercises, working with the arms and self discovery can also help heal this chakra.

A Mantra for the Heart Chakra:

“I open myself to give and receive love. I forgive myself and others for past mistakes and I acknowledge that I am worthy and safe to love myself and others.”

Throat ChakraSits in the throat area and rules self expression, communication and speaking one’s truth.

Associated with the color blue, the throat chakra can be activated by blue crystals such as sapphire and lapis lazuli, eating blue foods or wearing blue clothes.

The throat chakra rules over the throat, thyroid, vocal cords, mouth, teeth, gums, jaws ears and muscles and when imbalanced, issues such as chronic sore throats, a raspy voice, mouth ulcers, gum problems, laryngitis, swollen glands, thyroid problems, headaches, ear problems and pain in the neck or shoulders can occur.

An imbalance in this chakra emotionally can lead to talking too much, talking as a defence, inability to listen, gossiping, stuttering, fear of speaking, talking in a soft voice, shyness, poor rhythm, being tone deaf or an inability to put feelings into words.

Lies, secrets, verbal abuse, constant yelling, criticism, authoritative parents or chemical dependency in the family are common traumas associated with throat chakra issues.

In order to heal this chakra, self control and developing confidence must occur. Learning to communicate effectively, knowing that you are worthy of your own opinion, practicing silence and listening to others can also facilitate healing.

Chanting, singing, voice work, throat exercises and story telling can also help to heal this chakra.

A Mantra for the Throat Chakra:

“I accept myself, feelings and emotions and know that I am worthy to express how I feel. I hear and speak the truth and I trust that I can express myself with clear intent.”

Third Eye Chakrais located in the centre of the forehead and rules over our intuition, the mind, our imagination, intelligence and the ability to see life clearly.

It is associated with the color indigo and can be supported by amethyst crystals and lavender essential oil.

Physically, this chakra rules over our brain,  nervous system, ears, eyes, nose, face and the pineal and pituitary gland. When imbalances occur, headaches, eye disease nose and sinus problems, brain tumors, neurological disturbances, seizures and learning disabilities can be experienced.

Emotionally when this chakra is out of balance, nightmares, hallucinations, headaches, difficulty concentrating, delusions, poor memory, insensitivity, lack of imagination and denial can ensue.

Often those who have grown up in frightening environments or those who experience lack of support or validation for intuitiveness or creativity can experience trauma to this chakra.

In order to heal this chakra, mediation, visualizations, creating art, working with memory or dreams, hypnosis or past life therapy can help.

A Mantra for the Third Eye Chakra:

“I trust my intuition and open my mind to the endless creativity of the universe. I am open to hearing and experiencing all that is aligned with light and love and I have the power to manifest my desires.”

Crown Chakra: is the portal to our spiritual self and is responsible for spiritual awakenings, karma, awareness and all things divine. 

The colors represented by this chakra include purple, white, gold and silver and crystals that support this energy include diamond, quartz and selenite.

Physically, this chakra controls our muscular and skeletal system and our nervous system. When this chakra is imbalanced, energetic disorders, depression, migraines, amnesia, and sensitivity to the environment can be experienced.

Energetically, learning difficulties, materialism, greed, domination of others, spiritual addiction, dissociation from the body and depression can all be symptoms.

When this chakra is balanced, a feeling of deep spiritual connection can be felt as well as open-mindness, wisdom and a broad understanding of both the seen and unseen world.

Often experiences including, forced religion, fear of the unknown and spiritual abuse can cause trauma to this chakra.

To heal this chakra, an emotional, spiritual and physical connection needs to be made to the body. Meditation, understanding self and clearing the mind can all help.

A Mantra for the Crown Chakra:

“I am a divine spiritual being. I am guided by a higher power and my inner wisdom. I am love.”

Create Your Own Bathing Ritual

 I love the blog posts Sage Goddess does – this one resonates with this new year/new moon purifying energy!

How To Create Your Own Bathing Ritual

Everything you need to know about spiritual bathing practices

At the new year, I often talk about creating a fresh start – coming clean and washing away any stagnant energy or heaviness that has built up in our spirits from the past. These concepts conjure images of crystal clear, soothing water, and with good reason! Water is a healing and rejuvenating element that is instrumental in clearing away anything that no longer serves us, making it an ideal ally for these intentions. I have found sacred bathing rituals to be a powerful means for harnessing the power of water magic, and today I feel called to share with you how to create your own bathing rituals to support your clearing and emotional healing in 2016.

Bathing rituals immerse your body in water – an elemental force of magic which creates movement in your world. This force is felt physically but also energetically. Water teaches us to allow all forms of energy – money, health, happiness, relationships, experiences – to flow with ease and come to us effortlessly. Water is the ruling element of the emotional realm, and of your innate creativity. Water urges you to receive, to love, to create, to feel deeply, and to embrace your emotions with a compassionate heart. There’s a reason our bodies ⅔ water! Even the moon influences our physical functions, given the intimate connection between the moon and water.

There are many tools you can use to create your own sacred bathing rituals. You can infuse your bath water with sacred essences like essential oils, bath bombs, or soothing milks and bubbles to embrace the magical properties of plants and herbs. Your bathroom can be quickly transformed into the most sacred of spaces when filled with magical treasures. The flickering light of an intention candle, the soft spiral of sage’s white smoke, and the gentle vibration of your favorite gems at the edge (or inside) of your tub all work in harmony to open your spirit to water’s healing flow. I adore my personal time in the bath, and I know you will too. It invokes the ancient priestess in all of us. I encourage you to invest in personal healing and self-care in the new year with this sacred bathing ritual:

For this ritual I work with my January Month of Magic Bath Set which includes a bath bomb, a body scrub, body oil, and tealights and are scented with my Fountain of Youth perfume. I also use a washcloth and a small cup or pitcher. I have experienced powerful healing from this ritual and invite you to try it for yourself:

Sage Goddess Cleansing Bath Ritual:

  1. First, set a soft mood in your bathroom. Dim the lights and put on your favorite relaxing music (I enjoy Shaman’s Dream Pandora station).
  1. Then, place a tealight at each corner of your bathtub and light them. Start drawing your bath, filling the tub with warm water. While it’s filling, remove your clothing, sit near the edge of the tub and close your eyes. Listen to the rushing sound of the water from the faucet in meditation. Call in the Eater Elemental Spirits to join you in your space.
  1. When the bath is full, drop your bath bomb in the water and stir it in an infinity symbol with your hand, mirroring the cyclical movement of this sacred element. Breathe deeply and evenly as you sense the water passing through your fingers.
  1. Now, gently get into the bath, submerging yourself in the warm, healing water. As you breathe deeply, take in the aroma of the candles and water.
  1. Take your cup and fill it with water from the bath. Then, start a cycle of pouring the water over yourself, wherever you feel needs clearing. Ask Water to wash away any stagnant energies, letting anything that no longer serves you rush out of your energy field with its current.
  1. When you feel your field is cleared, lather your body scrub in a washcloth and gently massage your body. This will clear any remaining energy, and soften your skin!
  1. Take your time enjoying the waters of your bath, meditating on the sensations and visualizing Water surrounding your body, carrying all negativity away from you. When you feel your ritual is complete, send gratitude to Water and your guides for their support. Open the drain and let all the energy you released be drawn down the pipes, leaving you lighter and at ease.
  1. When you step out of the bath, dry yourself with a soft towel and massage your skin with your body oil for a nourishing treat. This oil will seal the work you’ve done in the ritual, ensuring the healing power is held within you. Repeat this ritual whenever you feel heavy or in need of release.

I hope this ritual brings you deep peace and renewal. Self-care is so critical, especially after the holidays, when we often overextend ourselves energetically. I encourage you to explore the infinite possibilities of working with water magic by trying different bath products to serve your needs. I have many beautiful creations in the shop that I am sure you will love, and I can’t wait to hear what magic you experience!

May you enter the year clean and clear,

Athena

The Best Form Of Stress Relief Based On Your Zodiac Sign

found this interesting, from higherperspectives.com – do you find these to be true for your sign?

Aries

Rams are busy people, often trying to live life to the fullest. Often times, you’re so energetic that you blow right through the week and don’t enjoy the little things. When you’re stressed out, take a day off. Go out and enjoy nature. Pamper yourself a little. Just slow down.

Taurus

Taurus are hard workers that take failure very personally. Recognize that everyone fails from time to time and that it doesn’t signify incompetence. When you’re stressed out, go easier on yourself. Take a break from work. Meditate. Spend some time considering your options.

Gemini

Geminis are complex people. They love a good conversation and enjoy having fun. When sedentary, stress builds up for you. If you’re feeling that your stress is hard to manage, find a way to burn off your extra energy. Take up weight lifting or swimming. Go for a long hike.

Cancer

Cancers find comfort in security, and often times, stress comes from feeling insecure. As a Cancer myself, meditating has always been important for my personal stress relief. It’s been important for me to consider too that I’m not always in charge of my destiny, which can be terrifying. There’s something reassuring about knowing that no one else really is either.

Leo

Leo takes it a step further than Cancer and tries to simply control everything, but this is a rather unrealistic and, in the end, unfair approach. Leos, so fiery, want to be the leaders of the world. A great deal of stress can come from losses and feeling out of control. Take a moment, take a deep breath, and cede control, even for just a little while.

Virgo

Virgo and Gemini are in many ways like siblings among the zodiac signs. You’re logical, but you can be too hard on yourself. You like knowing you can solve a problem, but when a problem doesn’t have a clear resolution, it weighs on you, right? In moments like these, when the stress is building, write down your thoughts and ideas. Talk to other people about them. Take a few days, then come back to it.

Libra

Libra is the most easily stressed of the bunch. Conflict is a sign of imbalance to you and if there’s no harmony, stress is sure to follow. Deal with this stress by reaffirming your commitment to peace and making it well known that you will not participate in any situation that ends up out of control.

Scorpio

Scorpio is sensitive but keeps their emotions hidden. Your need for privacy can cause emotions to build up. To keep stress from creeping in, express how you feel. Let people have it if they deserve it. Just don’t bottle it all up.

Sagittarius

Sagittarius likes being busy but hates being bossed around. You’re the most impulsive of the bunch. You tend to be impatient and stress starts to build when you don’t see the fruits of your labor. Take a deep breath and understand that you’re not going to always get that instant gratification. Meditation helps.

Capricorn

Capricorns, like Virgos, can be hard on themselves. When stressed out, the most important thing you can do is chill out. Take a little trip. Go to the spa. Find a hot tub and sit in it. Eat a favorite food. Just relax.

Aquarius

Aquarius is witty and adventurous, often leaping before looking. You have a tendency to be detached from the world and you can be stubborn and unwilling to listen. Remember, life isn’t always going to go your way. If that’s what stresses you out, the best stress reliever is a reality check.

Pisces

Pisces are a creative, sensitive, sometimes isolated bunch. You don’t like the limelight and when you’re the most exposed, you’re also the most stressed. Remember to take time for yourself. Shut yourself inside sometimes. Recharge your batteries.

How To Eat For Your Zodiac Sign + Why It Matters

Found this interesting, posted on MindBodyGreen.

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The path to healthy eating may be written in the stars.

Your zodiac sign reveals a lot about your true nature, and how you nurture yourself.

Here are some stellar healthy eating tips that can boost your optimal well-being. Read the one for your Sun sign; and if you know your Moon and Rising signs, read those too.

Don’t Skip Breakfast

You love firsts, so why not make the most of the first meal of the day. You can still honor your fast-out-of-the-gate nature by enjoying a breakfast that’s both quick and healthful. It will give you the fuel you need to power through the rest of your active day.

Approach Change Slowly

Being a creature of habit, your feathers get a bit ruffled by quick change. Therefore, instead of radically overhauling your diet, gradually implement healthful modifications. Pick one dietary resolution at a time and be patient with yourself as you slowly change your eating ways.

Focus On Your Food

You’re a master of multi-tasking, Gemini. Yet, doing double-duty during meal times— say, eating while web surfing — can have you rushing through meals, minimizing their enjoyment. Enjoying food that captivates your interest will slow down your eating, enhancing nutrient absorption.

Enjoy Home-Cooked Meals

Preparing food is so rewarding for nurturing Cancer as it’s an activity into which you can pour your love. Cooking more of your meals at home can nourish your body as well as your soul. After all, for you home is not only where the heart is, but also where the hearth is.

Celebrate, In Moderation

A fun party is one of Leos’ favorite pastimes. Yet, between the cocktails and the canapés, festive gatherings can be a diet land mine. Opt for a low- or no-alcohol drink to save calories. Enjoy an appetite-curbing pre-party snack to help you avoid impulsive food choices.

Enjoy Homegrown Food

Since earthy Virgos are very connected to the land, tending to a garden and growing your own food is something you’ll likely dig. Have limited outdoor space? You can still honor your inner farmer by growing a few pots of culinary herbs on your windowsill or in small containers.

Make Mealtime Beautiful

As Libras are nurtured by beauty, making meals an aesthetically pleasing experience will make them more nourishing. Whether you’re enjoying a home-cooked dinner or take-out, using candles, nice dishes, and cloth napkins will elevate your meal into an artful experience.

Temper Emotional Eating

Driven by passion, you may find yourself eating for solace if others can’t meet you on a deep emotional level. Before seeking unrequited consolation in a box of cookies, instead probe whether another nourishing activity can provide you with the comfort you’re seeking.

Be A Culinary Globetrotter

With a love of travel, Sagittarius has an affinity for the global and exotic. Even if you’re unable to journey to far-away places, you can enjoy the cuisines of those lands. This will keep your diet interesting as well as expose you to the healthful ways of other cultures.

Invest In Eating Regularly

Focused on all that needs to be achieved, Capricorns don’t like diversions — even hunger — that can keep you from your work. Yet remember: eating at regular intervals is a great investment in your health and can elevate your A-Game, adding to the productivity that you cherish.

Honor Your Need For Freedom

Freedom-lovers extraordinaire, you want to beat to your own drum, even when it comes to eating. So give yourself the liberty to approach mealtime design in a way that reflects your independent streak. For example, if you’d rather eat six mini-meals than three square meals, give yourself that flexibility.

Practice Mindful Eating

While daydreaming feeds your spirit, doing so during meals can cause you to lose track of the food you are consuming. Practicing mindful eating — being present and savoring the experience of your meal — can help you feel more grounded in your body, a boon to ethereally inclined Pisces.

Your Aura is an Extension of You – 8 Ways To Strengthen Your Auric Field

You are constantly receiving information from your environment, not only through your five senses, but also through your auric field! You are able to perceive when someone is staring at you without seeing them, you can sense how somebody is feeling despite a facade, and you find some people to be energizing while others might be draining.

Your aura is an extension of you. It is the energy field that surrounds your body. Many ancient cultures believe that illness first starts because of a weakness in the aura. Maintaining your auric field cleansed, strong and complete, will bring optimal health and wellbeing to you!

As your aura interacts with your surroundings, it is good for it to be strong, so that it acts as a flexible boundary, as a protective shield, filtering out anything that could harm you, stress you, drain you, or get you sick. Also, when your aura is strong, you feel more you, more connected to your truth and your own wisdom.


o-MEDITATION-facebook1- MEDITATION: 
Whether you practice meditation on your own or in a group, in silence or with a guided meditation, you are in for a wonderful healing!  

Meditation is one of the most ancient and easiest ways to achieve health, relaxation, and happiness!

2- REIKI ATTUNEMENT: Reiki Attunements strengthen and expand the auric field. It is said that auras normally expand ten or twelve inches from the body, but after reiki Attunements, it can expand  up to nine feet. There is tremendous empowerment in learning how to heal yourself! Your inner knowing, intuition and inner strength will dramatically increase.

Healthy-Foods3- FITNESS AND HEALTHY HABITS: Exercising in a park, hiking enjoying the fresh air, practicing breathing exercises under the sun, connecting with the elements such as in stepping on grass barefoot…

these are wonderful ways to strengthen your energy field!  Martial Arts are also a path towards empowerment.  Thanks to Martial Arts I could pursue my Healing Arts and Spiritual path without feeling ungrounded.  It certainly gave me strong roots!

4- SOUND HEALING: Sound Healing and Mantras dissolve negativity and clean your energetic field.  They also help expand your aura and your Spiritual presence. Sound and music are often used by native tribes for Shamanic practices.

5- HEALING CRYSTALS AND ESSENTIAL OILS: This is a beautiful and enjoyable way to strengthen your aura. You can burn Crystal 1some essential oil, a good one would be Vetiver, while you hold one or more Healing Crystals in your hands.

Some excellent Crystals to work with are Black Tourmaline and Labradorite. The effects from 20 minutes of this work may last for over 10 hours!

You can also have the Crystals in your purse or wear them as jewelry. The same occurs with the essential oil, it can be your new perfume!

6- YOUR ENVIRONMENT: Your friends, the things you have in your room, your office, your car, have their own energy field that influences yours and vice versa. Look for positive uplifting friends that help you feel energized. Remove any extra electrical objects from your bedroom and minimize your exposure to man-made radiation.

7- SALT AND WATER: Water and salt are two of the most powerful cleansers! You can remove toxins and negativity with a Yogic cleansing bath. Just add a little under a lb. of baking soda and a cup of salt to your bath water. Other options are swimming in the ocean, or taking a cold shower using sea salt as a body scrub.

setyourintention

8- INTENTION: Intention is key in accomplishing anything.  Set your intention of strengthening your aura before using any of the above tools.

Also, when you wake up, go to bed, and several times during the day, intend for your aura to be perfect and complete all around you.

Above your head and below your feet and imagine a golden layer of energy all around it, that can only let love and positive things come to you and out from you.

Expect Miracles; for you are the one who can create them.

From thespiritscience.net

7 Yoga Poses To Balance Your Chakras

More yoga goodness from MindBodyGreen!  Original post here.  I think I’ll do these tonight!

“In response to requests I received after publication of my earlier article on how to unblock your chakras through a writing exercise, I’ve compiled seven yoga poses which can also bring balance to seven of your chakra centers.

When a chakra, or wheel of energy, is stuck it may be helpful to release the prana (energy) through movement. Yoga postures are a great way to release stale or stuck energy from the body because they invite fresh, vital energy back in through poses and the breath.

I’ve selected my favorite asanas, which correspond to each of the seven main chakras.

Yoga poses that can help to balance your chakras aren’t limited to the ones above. In fact, some of the chakras have many postures to help activate or balance the energy center. Please feel free to share your favorites!

1st Chakra (Muladhara)

Virabhadrasana I, or Warrior I, is a great pose for the first chakra. It connects you to the earth, giving you a strong foundation in the feet. With the root chakra located at the base of the spine in the pelvis, the hips get a nice stretch in this pose, releasing stale energy.

2nd Chakra (Svadhisthana)

Baddha Konasana, or Bound Angle Pose, is appropriate to balance the second chakra. This hip opener once again brings attention to the pelvic region, where this chakra sits closely to Muladhara. Stretching the groin area helps to release tension in the seat of Svadishtana.

3rd Chakra (Manipura)

Navasana, or Boat Pose, helps to stimulate the third chakra. Located at the solar plexus, this posture activates the fire of Manipura and connects us to our center.

4th Chakra (Anahata)

Ustrasana, or Camel Pose, opens up our heart center. We often protect our hearts and close them off to vulnerability, which may limit our experiences. When we expose our hearts we can invite more love and give more love out, thus balancing Anahata.

5th Chakra (Vishudha)

Matsyasna, or Fish Pose, releases our throat chakra. Stretching out our throats permits us to freely express ourselves through our unique voices.

6th Chakra (Ajna)

Child’s Pose connects the third eye to the floor, stimulating our center of intuition. By physically activating and bringing awareness to Ajna, we may be able to access our great inner wisdom.

You can also stack your fist under your third eye for more stimulation.

7th Chakra (Sahasrara)

Sirsasana, or Headstand, activates our crown chakra by placing pressure on the tops of our heads. The seventh chakra is the gateway to universal consciousness, and when stimulated we bring attention to this area and can connect to our higher self.

11 Yoga Poses To Harness The Power Of The Full Moon

MindBodyGreen is one of my favorite websites!  They posted this today, and I love it and wanted to share!  Maybe we should start doing Full Moon yoga at my house?

“The full moon is a time to release what no longer serves us, inviting an expansion of our minds and bodies. During the cycle of the moon each month, we can use the new moon to plant seeds of intention, and revisit again at the height of full moon so that they might come to fruition.

After consulting with our resident astrologers, The AstroTwins, I’ve put together 11 yoga poses to expand and release — two major cosmic themes under any given full moon. With tonight’s full moon (June 2) falling in Sagittarius, it’s also a time to harness your inner adventurer and bring forth your bold and fearless self.

Yoga helps to release tension stored in the subtle, energetic body, so that you can open yourself up to receive all the celestial gifts the full moon has to offer. You can perform these poses as a sequence, or on their own as part of your own practice. Just be sure to warm up your spine with Cat/Cow postures and Sun Salutations before you begin — many of these poses are big heart openers and lengthening backbends to help you create space.

Standing Backbend (Anuvittasana) With Hands To Sacrum

Standing backbends lengthen the psoas muscles at the front of the pelvis to simultaneously flex the thighs.

Begin in Mountain Pose (Tadasana), rooting the tailbone down and pressing through the soles of your feet. Release your shoulders as you reach palms to sacrum, fingertips pointing downward. Draw your elbows together and use your hands to press your hips forward, bending through the thoracic spine. Allow your head to gently drop back, lengthening through your Throat Chakra as you breathe deeply.

Continue pressing the hips forward as you bend back, only going as far as what feels good. Hold for 3 deep breaths and press into your sacrum to come back to Tadasana. Fold forward to relieve any compression in the lumbar spine.

Standing Backbend With Extension

For this second set, return to Tadasana and inhale to sweep your hands up overhead, interlacing all of your fingers except for the index finger. Exhale to release the shoulders down the back. Inhale, and then exhale into the backbend, lifting from your heart. Lengthen the middle of the spine away from you as you grow long out of the lumbar spine. Keep the biceps framed by the ears and shoulders engaged and down, to prevent shrugging.

Breathe deeply for 3-5 breaths, feeling the space being created between the vertebrae and heart opening under the moonlight. Press down through the feet, using your hands to guide you back up. Release your hands by your sides and take a breath in Tadasana.

Devotional Warrior With Eagle Arms

From Tadasana, inhale to step your left foot long behind you, turning the back foot in at 45 degrees as you bend deeply through your right thigh. Exhale to extend the arms overhead to Warrior I (Virabhadrasana I).

Release the hands and eagle wrap the right arm under the left, with the left arm over the right, drawing your palms together. Feel the deep release in your trapezius muscles as you draw the fingertips just below your nose.

Inhale to send the palms overhead, still wrapped, exhale to bow yourself forward. Breathe deeply for 5 breaths.

Peaceful Warrior (Viparita Virabhadrasana)

In this expansive back and side bend, disciplined muscle energy is being unleashed!

From Devotional Warrior, release the wrapping of your arms and inhale to windmill the arms out to either side while still bending deeply through the front knee. Flip the front palm skyward and tip your torso back on an exhale.

Draw the other hand down the back leg and keep the right shoulder away from the ear as you allow the chest to open to the sky. Gently release the head back if it feels good. Take 5 deep breaths, finding more length on the right side of the body with each exhale.

Half Moon Pose (Ardha Chandrasana)

From Peaceful Warrior use your exhale to tip your torso all the way forward, dropping your right fingertips a few inches in front of your foot. Bring your left hand to your hip on an inhale, and exhale to shift your weight to the right leg as the left leg lifts and extends back to counterbalance, parallel to the ground. Try to track your left ankle only as high as your left hip point, flexing the left toes out to the side.

The glutes work with the psoas of lifted leg to keep it from floating back, as the oblique abdominals allow the side of your trunk to bend. Your triceps are working to draw your elbows toward straight as you extend the left arm to the sky. Let your gaze naturally follow. Reach for the moon with your fingertips and smile. Hold for 3-5 breaths, keeping your gaze soft, yet focused — maintaining your drishti.

Sugarcane Pose (Ardha Chandra Chapasana)

If you’d like to challenge yourself further from Half Moon, reach for the top of the back foot with your left hand. Draw the heel closer to the left sitting bone for a quad stretch.

Keep spinning your chest and gaze toward the sky, opening your heart to let the moonlight pour in. Breathe for 3 breaths and release the foot back to Half Moon.

Low Lunge (Anjaneyasana) With Backbend

From Half Moon, frame the right foot with both hands to square off the hips, and step the left foot long behind you, keeping your knee bent at 90 degrees and the back toes tucked to stretch through the plantar fascia.

On an inhale, sweep the arms overhead to interlace all of the fingers except for the index fingers. Exhale to soften the shoulders down your back. Inhale to lengthen through the thoracic spine, exhale to extend the lumbar spine out of the pelvis to prevent compression.

Breathe deeply for up to 5 breaths and then use your hands to guide yourself back up on an inhale. Exhale to soften. Release your fingertips to either side of the front foot.

Wild Thing (Camatkarasana)

From Low Lunge, step back to Downward Dog. On an inhale, lift the right foot high behind you. Exhale to bend the right knee, shifting your weight to the left hand and foot. Get adventurous and flip your Dog over to Wild Thing.

To practice this pose safely, ensure you are keeping your hips lifted. Instead of just throwing the head back, keep the neck lengthened and the gaze following the right fingertips overhead. Keeping both knees slightly bent, ground through the outer edge of the left foot.

Hold for 3 breaths and then press into your left hand and foot to flip yourself back to a Downward Dog split with the right leg lifted.


Fallen Triangle (Trikonasana Variation)

With the right leg still lifted, exhale to step the right foot across the left and as far out to the side as you can. Shift your weight into your right palm, extending your left arm overhead. Ground through the outer edge of the right foot, and the inner edge of the left.

The legs are forming an expansive triangular shape as you rotate the heart open, lifted through your hips. Hold for 3 breaths and come back to Downward Dog.

Camel Pose (Ustrasana)

Lower to your knees from Downward Dog and bring your hands back to your sacrum, fingertips pointing down and root your pinky toenails into the earth. Inhale to press into your sacrum with your palms and exhale to lift through your heart. Keep pressing your hips forward as your heart opens wide. Lengthen through the throat and hold for a breath or two.

To go further, release the tops of your hands to your heels and keep the shoulders dropped away from the ears. Gently release the head back, mindful to not compress the cervical spine. Breathe deeply in and out of your nose for 3 more breaths, then use your palms to press yourself back up and tuck your chin.

Sit back onto your heels and send your knees wide, bringing your hands to Namaskar (Anjali Mudra) at your heart’s center. Close your eyes and notice what may have come up.

Wide-Angle Seated Forward Bend (Upavistha Konasana)

Swing your feet around in front of you and separate them wide, flexing the toes upward. Remove and flesh from under your sitting bones and inhale, lengthening through your chest. Exhale to walk your hands out in front of you.

Inhale to find more length out of the waist, exhaling to find more release. You can rest the weight of your torso to your forearms or release to the ground beneath you.

Breathe deeply for at least 10 breaths, finding release and restoration with every exhale.

Revisit your intentions for the full moon here — what is it that you need to let go of?
What is it that you need to bring forth?”

Let’s talk about menstrual cycles, ladies.

If you don’t want to talk about periods, tune out now.  Warned you!

That being said, this really isn’t gross. I am interested in how to time my fitness activities with my cycle – I just feel totally different throughout the month and wanted to know when I should do various types of workouts.  So, I boiled down the information I found online via various sources to this:

Our menstrual cycles consist of ever-changing hormonal profiles that can impact our strength, flexibility and endurance throughout the month. Creating a training plan that takes into consideration the impact of our hormones will lead to greater effectiveness, as well as a greater connection with our body – it is an act of honoring our body.

1. Day 1 is the start of your menstrual cycle – normal bleeds are 3 to 5 days.  This is time to lay on the couch. 🙂  OK, maybe stretch. Maybe.

2. Follicular phase (roughly days 5 – 14, varies among women): usually you’ll feel upbeat and outgoing; consider experimenting with new classes and new movements

2. Ovulatory (days 7/10-10/14): you’ll often feel a surge in energy, a great time to do some HIIT training or go for a personal record!

3. Luteal (days 10/14-28): your energy steadily decreases and you may feel more introspective – yoga, walking, and Pilates are great options for this phase.

So, there you have it – that’s easy, right?  I’m going to test and see if my body likes these guidelines this month.