I posed this question to the 22 beautiful yoga students who attended my class last weekend. What is the light that dances at the center of you? A question you can only find the answers to when you become still and look inwards and listen to your heart's knowing. She has messages that she longs to share with you. Do you care to join me on this journey into stillness and find your place of refuge and rekindle your light?
We gathered in the basement of a church near the lake to practice yoga. You can feel the sacred energy that has gathered in this space from the hours of yoga, meditation, prayer, shamanic journeying, drumming circles, and healing that has taken place in this refuge. There is also a labyrinth made of stones placed in a circular fashion on the grounds that overlook the lake. A path to walk during mediation and a time for deep reflection guiding you towards your center within as you slowly walk to the center of the labyrinth.
When I worked at the middle school, I taught yoga, breathwork, and meditation in my room along with math, science, history, among other subjects. I know that the positive energy flowing left an essence that had gathered in my room. It was a safe place where everyone was treated with love, kindness, and respect. People sought out my classroom for sanctuary during the day...students, teachers, and staff alike. They knew it was a safe haven for anyone who walked through the doorway. A place of sanctuary. I was a refuge for them at times throughout the day they might need a moment of shelter. We can offer that sacred space to ourselves in our homes.
It is that time of year, late fall and slowly moving towards winter that invites this quiet inquiry. The hours of daylight get shorter, it is darker longer and the temperatures have mostly let go of summer's heat and become cooler. We are beckoned indoors. It is a quiet invitation to follow mother nature's lead and go within. We have a tendency to hibernate naturally, but perhaps this season you might want to create a refuge for yourself...besides binge watching Netflix....lol just a thought. A place within your home where you can sit in silence and give your mind a rest. A place where you won't be disturbed for a few minutes a few times a week and gradually you will make time for it every day.
You can bring plants or flowers to your space. You might look at it as making a seat for your soul or your consciousness to sit in and gather strength. A seat near a window where you can gaze out at the natural world can be soothing. Nature heals, calms us, and is a perfect gateway to creating a sacred space. When I look into the woods beyond my home, I imagine a healing portal just there beyond my physical reach. I imagine stepping into it through the trees that stand grounded to the earth and are quiet angel sentinels guiding me in and holding a sacred space for me to find solace and tap into my inner light.
You could have pictures of loved ones or a deity that speaks to your heart nearby your place of refuge. They are silent witnesses you love that honor your journey into your self discovery. It is a gift you allow yourself by taking a moment or two during the week to find the peace that resides within. Make the space your own and a place you want to spend time in. You honor yourself by showing up there.
I like to light a candle to make it a sacred space. If you have trouble slowing down your mind, sit down and just watch the flame of the candle flicker and breathe quietly. Just keep noticing the flickering candle, it is mesmerizing and has a very calming affect. You can rub your hands together quickly to create some heat and place them over your eyes feeling that heat and healing energy you generated. Close your eyes, cup your hands gently over your eyes and breathe deeply. You can still see the candle flickering in your mind's eye. The light within you is beginning to reappear. It is never gone.
Begin to massage your face, your temples, your jaw. You can place fingers on either side of your ears as your palms hold your face in a loving embrace and massage any tension away that is held there from too much thinking. Continue gently pressing your fingertips into the back of your skull and draw the energy down to where your head and neck meet and massage your neck and shoulders. As you continue to take deep breaths, you can roll your shoulders up, back, and down in one direction and then reverse the direction...up, forward, and down. Slowly and very gently, roll your head one direction several times and then reverse and go the other way around. Ahhhhh, feels like you might be ready to sit for a moment and just come back to the light of you.
Place one hand on your heart and the other hand on your lower abdomen and breathe deeply all the way down to your abdomen. Allow your attention to sink into your heart space. And before you know it, you have calmed down. When we give ourselves the gift of sanctuary, a shelter in place, you can reenergize and find inspiration. The light that dances at the center of you will once again appear and reveal the answers you are longing to hear. Call back that sense of belonging and reignite your inner light. Begin to fan those flames.
After time, you will find yourself drawn to this refuge you have created for yourself. Sacred energy will gather in this space. This is a place where you can sit, breathe, meditate, contemplate, set intentions or pray and look at your life. You can bring your problems here to sort out and lay down what is too heavy to carry. You can sit here and celebrate your joy, happiness, and gratitude. Feel free to jot down in a journal anything that arises. There is a loving presence here. The energy is subtle and it is inside of you and outside of you and it is in everything. A sacred, unseen network of love that enfolds you always. You are not separate. You never were and never will be separated from this all encompassing love.
You will be able to provide sanctuary to others when you find the peace within you. You will begin to embody that sacred presence within you that has always been with you. We lose that inner sanctuary from too much doing, striving, thinking, and trying to achieve. The more you allow your inner wisdom, your intuition to guide you, life magically falls into place. Your creativity flows quite naturally from the deep knowledge of the universal mind. You give up your futile efforts of trying to control everything in life that cannot be controlled. You are able to freely move unabashedly and confidently into the unknown flow. Take a journey inwards and find the light that dances at the center of you. Go in peace and love and follow your heart's desire.
Angela O'Brien-Greywitt, Intuitive Mystic
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