Saluting the Sun, Honoring the Moon

Saluting the Sun, Honoring the Moon

“The beauty you see in me is a reflection of you.” – Vanna Bonta

If there is one thing about travel that really puts the ache in my bones, it’s being out of sync with the clock. The symptoms of such an imbalance can turn into a bad habit that zaps my energy and turns road-weary adventures into tropical torture.

So when I discovered the amazing yoga practice that has allowed me to sync with the waxing and waning of the moon as I trot merrily around the globe, I knew I had to share it with the world.

Most of the yoga classes I’ve been to have taught some form of hatha yoga, and it was in the balanced energies of this practice that I found my adventurer’s equilibrium. The word hatha is a combination of the Sanskrit words ‘ha’ and ‘tha’ which mean “the sun” and “the moon” respectively. And the literal translation of the word pays homage to “the force” that unites the two heavenly bodies.

For a traveler (or anyone sensitive to the changing of the seasons), there is a need to acknowledge these sources of light and transformation in a very real and physical way.

The Sun

Patterning your life around the rise and set of the sun is the most powerful way I know to overcome jet lag, deal with seasonal affective disorder, and really get to know the natural world you’re living in. On a recent trip to the Hridaya yoga retreat in Mexico, I was especially challenged to reset my inner clock when daylight savings time began three days into a 10-day silent meditation!

Here are a few things I do when I really need to kick-start that circadian rhythm:

Wake with the sun.

Even if you go back to bed for three more hours, take a few minutes to get up and see the sky beginning to lighten. Make a cup of tea, or sit and write down your dreams. For me, this is a great time to spend a few moments in meditation, setting my intentions for the day, then getting warmed up with some sun salutations.

Turn the screens off after dark.

The best way to get your stress under control and regulate your sleep patterns is to avoid sources of blue light after the sun goes down. Turn the cell phones and computers and TVs off. Eat dinner by candlelight if you want to go all in. Read with a lantern. Gaze at the stars. Enjoy the evening.

This simple change can completely reset the way your body deals with stress hormones, regulating your metabolism and helping you get better, more restful sleep. And if you can’t give up the screen for the enter twilight, install a program like Flux to limit your blue light exposure.

Spend some time outside.

If you burn easily, go for indirect sunlight for a spot in the shade, but do your best to get some real sunlight on your skin, get that surge of vitamin D and really breathe the warmth and strength of the sun into your solar plexus. Spend some time focusing on the projective powers of your body and mind. How do you show up in the world? What do you manifest?

The Moon

Don’t forget that there is more to your body’s cycles than your daily routine and the seasons of the year. Just as the moon waxes and wanes, controlling the tides, the energies of the lunar aspects turn inward and outward in an endless orbit.

Look outside to look inside.

One of the best ways to spend your evenings (now that they’re internet-free, right?) is to pay attention to the movement of the stars and the moon. Think about your introspective powers. How well do you know your own mind and emotions?

Wax and wane with the moon.

As the moon waxes, think about how you might grow certain aspects of your inner self. When the moon is full, celebrate those changes. A waning sliver represents a time to consider bad habits to break or old patters to leave behind. On the dark moon, we are reborn. Who do you want to be when the new moon appears again?

Incorporate the moon into your practice.

Bring these energies into your meditation and asana practice. Allow your mind to open to these two aspects of yourself as if they are two parts of your breath. Breathe in your intentions and desires, breathe out the force of your will to make it happen.

What practices do you use to get grounded in a new location or to get you in tune with the environment and the seasons in natural world around you?

Leave a comment or drop me a line and let me know!

How to Connect With the Divine Energy Your Higher Self Holds

How to Connect With the Divine Energy Your Higher Self Holds

Connecting with the Divine Energy within your Higher Self can be a transformative and enlightening experience. It can guide you toward a deeper understanding of your true nature and spiritual potential. To embark on this journey of self-discovery, you’ll need to do a couple of things that seem easy but might be harder than you think in practice. From finding a quiet and peaceful space to silencing your mind and communicating with the divine, it requires more than simple meditation. Divine Energy pervades all of existence. Embrace this connection with an open heart, and let it illuminate your path toward spiritual growth and self-awareness.

What is the Higher Self?

The Higher Self, also known as the Divine Self, is the Self that exists at an even higher level than the soul; it is in every human being ever born. It is the true self essence of the Universe that dwells in your being, the source of all light and life within you, and your true motivation for living. It is a belief held by Hindus and New Age thought alike.

The Divine Self is what powers you and makes you wonder. It is the spiritual journey of the soul light at your core that chose to be incarnate at this point in time. It’s ever-aware and has been thinking since you began existing in this lifetime, and since your birth in other lifetimes. The body and the physical realm, in which we dwell in our own life, are thought to be but a vehicle for the Higher Self.

Divine Energy and the Higher Self

Divine Energy is the sacred yet infinite force that connects everything in the universe and transcends the physical world. It is believed to provide life, consciousness, and creation with things like love and wisdom. The concept of the Higher Self is closely related and represents the purest essence within individuals that connects them to the Divine Energy. Aligning with the Higher Self allows one to access ancient wisdom and spiritual growth – leading to a deeper understanding of one’s purpose and a sense of oneness with all creation.

If you’ve ever experienced synchronicities, where coincidences that are too uncanny to be coincidental occur in your life, you may be in the process of connecting with your higher self.

In the same beliefs, the soul is closer to the personality and is an intermediary between the person and her Divine Self until such time as she is able to directly experience and realize the Divine Self as who she is.

How to Contact Your Higher Consciousness

If you’re interested in opening up to your Divine Self, the practice promises guidance, peace, harmony, and illuminating light through its higher knowledge. Believers also claim that you can more easily turn away from the distractions of the physical world, and restore yourself in the light, love, and power of this eternal Self, because it will reveal the illusions, desires, and attachments that keep you trapped in a lower vibration and on a lesser path, thus enabling you to find your higher path. You are also supposed to gain a greater ability to recognize limiting, disharmonious, and restricting energies and forms.

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