“For me, becoming isn’t about arriving somewhere or achieving a certain aim. I see it instead as forward motion, a means of evolving, a way to reach continuously toward a better self. The journey doesn’t end.”
Michelle Obama, BECOMING
Ciao and Sacred Sunday to you:
|I hope you’re feeling well and continuing to bathe in the afterglow of the glorious full moon we experienced this past week.
Grab your coffee or tea love, this may take a few more minutes than usual to read. But trust me, it’s so worth your time.
Here in Southern Oregon, it was one of those perfect evenings; when the heat of the sun recedes, and the air feels cool against your skin. While gazing up into the night sky the vast indigo canopy glistens with shimmering starlight.
Sitting out on our front porch, a ritual we started years ago, I began to chant my favorite full moon mantra. Bless his heart, after a few minutes I heard my husband’s voice quietly join in. And as if by silent agreement, we both stopped chanting at the exact moment to sit in the stillness.
Most often, on full moon nights, I don’t sleep well. I’ve never been the best of sleepers; blame it on the bossa nova called, Vata. Yet, as I learned over the years how to manage the air and space elements of my constitution, I do enjoy better sleep.
And so, much to my surprise, on the night of the full moon, oh it was a delicious rest. I don’t remember what I was dreaming, but I woke up thinking about a teaching that I want to share with you today.
In the style of yoga I taught for most of my professional career, there’s a secondary principle that you might have heard me teach, perhaps you heard from another teacher or you’ve never heard it before.
“Root to Rise.”
Now this teaching and instruction in yoga asana refers to the yoga student’s ability to root down, from the focal point of the pose into the earth, to lengthen the spine, expand the inner body and to feel simultaneously grounded and stable as well as light and spacious.
No doubt, it’s a physical action that strengthens the body and can offer relief from pain, such as the lower back, neck, and space in the joints. It’s a marvel.
What I also appreciate about this principle, and all the principles that are the foundation of this style of yoga, is that it’s referring to more than the physical body.
Which is why it’s important to remember, “root to rise” is also about you and your life.
What I’m suggesting, is that for you to rise-up from some form of pain; a difficult situation, relationship, either personal or professional, financial struggle, despair over the state of the world, you need to be deeply rooted into the foundation of your core and your core values.
In order for you to rise-up to your potential despite what’s going on around you, you best be rooted into principles that urge your growth, transformation, awakening.
how else will you free yourself from limiting thoughts and behaviors to become your future self
how else will you learn that you’re not defined by your old stories so you can take authorship of your life
how else will you learn that it’s never too late to live your best life
Imagine for a moment the yoga posture, Tadasana or mountain pose. For you to execute the pose with strength and ease you need to ground down, from the core of your pelvis into both standing legs, through the four corners of your feet, into the earth beneath you.
There’s a rebounding effect that happens when you’re rooted; you also rise! If you’re conscious enough, physically, and energetically.
And just like mountain pose, for you to find strength and ease in your life you must grow your roots into something solid and true.
Or you’re simply building castles in the air.
Instead, you can be like one of my clients, who had the courage to face that she was living an inauthentic version of herself; took a breath, got rooted and said, “no more”!
As one who’s primary dosha is Vata, I know all about the importance of staying grounded without being rigid. So that the creative flow of the air and space elements can be a source of creativity and joy, as opposed to anxiety, disillusionment, and self-diminishment when ungrounded.
Quick reminder – you too are made up of the elements: air, space, fire, water, and earth.
One of the ways in which I personally root to rise, is of course getting on my mat and into my body so I can practice the principles.
Yet, there are many other ways. Like how I shared at the beginning of this Sacred Sunday.
creating ritual that nourishes and inspires me.
practicing mantra, mudra, and meditation.
surrounding myself with people who are committed to their personal and spiritual growth.
People who when their roots are feeling disrupted and they are faltering, know to seek guidance, support, and help.
People who know their values and yet when they feel themselves getting pulled up and away, they’re courageous enough to pause, reassess and even look at whether their values have shifted.
Sometimes in your life, no matter how many self-help books you’ve read, how many workshops you’ve attended, how many yoga classes you’ve taken, how many hours of meditation you do a week, you falter.
Life is exquisite. And sometimes my friend, there are times when it’s exquisitely painful. Will it last? No.
Could you use a little support to help you move through it. Yes.
Sometimes you’re just too damn close to the “whatever” to see the path right in front of you.
Be honest, do you ever feel that way – I know I have
Are you feeling that way now
While you may have lots of tools in your toolbox there are times, you’re so verklempt and in the thick of it, that you can’t even remember you have a toolbox. Let alone open it up and know which tool you need.
That’s why it’s helpful to find the ways in which you root to rise.
And then practice them.
It’s also super helpful to put a team in place to remind you not only how to do it, but which tool when.
Whether your team is made up of a therapist, trusted friend, coach, beloved, each of us needs people who will hold us in a container of non-judgement and accountability, and that helps us find our way forward.
Someone who has been down the rabbit hole and not only survived but thrived.
Someone you trust that will help you re-root into your intrinsic value and worth so you can rise to yet another level of brilliance.
With love and appreciation, xoxo Paulette