Pragmatic Meditations & Exercises #1 – The Past Recedes
- Firstly, we’re going to clear our minds with some belly breathing. Ideally, find yourself a space somewhere comfortable, but if you’re on the bus or train home from work this will work just as well!
- Start with a deep exhalation, clear the stale energy from your alveoli and prepare for the inhalation.
- Gently feel the ribs expanding and the sternum lifting as you fill your lungs all the way up to the brim,
- While you’re reading this, keep a gentle rhythm and maintain the focus on your breath.
Our mantra for today’s meditation is the past.
- I want you to think of an old behaviour or experience, whether it’s a food you really didn’t like, a person you put up resistance too, in this case I’m going to keep it relative and use an Asana as my example.
- Hold the thought in your mind: “I don’t like Lotus Pose” (I love it, but for our discussion :)) What I want you to do, is to repeat this seemingly negative mantra very briefly, just enough to solicit an emotionally triggered physical response from your body.
- By that I mean, pay attention to the cold sweats on the palm of your hand, perhaps it manifests as a deep seated anxiety within the gut. It could be a more cerebral experience where you feel particularly tense head muscles, which could be a way to signify an undercurrent of anger.
- Whatever the physical reaction to that mental stimuli, I want you to wrap it in awareness. I’m not chucking ‘new-age’ at you, I just want to you to become an observer rather than an experiencer, or sufferer.
Feel the internal sensations
- Say for instance myself with Lotus Pose; I pay attention to the clammy palms, as an insecurity of “Not being a real yogi without it” comes to surface. With that rising, I get a knot in my stomach, as the limiting ego belief that “You can’t do it”, in whoever’s voice I’ve picked up to attack myself with, steps in the ring to generate fear from a seemingly harmless thought.
- This culminates with a tightness in my hips; the physical manifestation of that old fear actually helps to perpetuate it by cementing itself in my groin & pelvic muscles, which create more stress.
- However… We’re the watchers. Now we’ve charted the progress at each level, I already feel more empowered to deal with the solution. On a basic level, I know that I need some help with a problem, which is already a perception shift from earlier. Then, I’ve shone a light (like a torch through the mist) onto my problem, and seen how it acts upon me in different stages.
- This time, when I get the familiar message of “You’re not good enough”, I’m able to let it sit, to ask “Why aren’t I good enough?”, to which the ego responds with a further stream of self-doubts, which in turn gives us access to our minds and our behaviours, and the healing can begin.
Within this meditation, the key points are:
- Awareness – Find the problem or limiting belief/behaviour
- Acceptance – Recognise that this is your current situation, you can move through, but only with reflection.
- Decision – Take what you’ve learnt through your meditation, and apply it. For example, I realised my limiting belief was through not being good enough.
So how do I become good enough at Lotus?
- Yogasync Me! I used Yoga.Sync of course!
- The structured and beautifully explained instructional Asana sections are phenomenal for allowing you growth in avenues of your practice that you may feel stale, or like myself: Limited by. If that wasn’t enough, you could ask the yoga.org community and contact the team of yoga experts behind the scenes – and then meditate on their answer, using the format I outlined above!
- I was able to focus my energy in a positive way on negative aspects by bringing awareness, and by harnessing the power of my physical experience, I was able to transcend my old belief, learn about myself, have fun learning a new position AND get my money’s worth through my Yogasync membership!
If you have 5 minutes free I promise this exercise could change your perceptions. Whether it’s an old friend you want to reconnect with but have to deal with underlying karma, or even a food you’ve had an aversion to since childhood that you’d like to rekindle an attraction with, have fun and most importantly; be aware.
Yogasync Me! Check out the Yogasync Workshop especially designed to work the body into Lotus posture! And it works!