Are you living in harmony with your body? Or is the body just some creaky house used to carry the brain around in? Do you feel the earth beneath your feet when you walk, present with each step? Or is it possible you are at the whim of the monkey mind, living most of your life in the past or the imagined future, not noticing the ground beneath you at all?
Like most humans I live a good deal of my time in my head, identifying with the mind, but when I feel my breath getting shallow, coupled with an energetic buzz in my brain and kind of floating feeling... up up and away as if my mind was about to take off to a far away place leaving my body as a deflated balloon-- I know it's time to get EARTHY; it's time to reconnect with my roots, get deep amongst my flesh and bone and bask in the hear and now. This is Muladhara Chakra.
Over the next 8 weeks our beginners will be in training and each of their class will be themed on one of the major chakras (energy centres in the body, which reflect physical and emotional properties, and can be activated and balanced through asana, pranayama and meditation). This week, we will start with our BASE CHAKRA (Muladhara in Sanskrit) which, is all about our connection with the earth, our ability to feel grounded, safe and supported in all that we are and all that we do.
Now, as someone who has come from the creative world of the performing arts, I love a good theme ;) So ALL Shambhala classes this week will be working the base chakra, our earth connection; there will be lots of standing poses, including the warrior's triangle series to strengthen and lengthen the legs, as well as some nice floor work, where we can get earthy, surrender to gravity and feel deeply supported by this divine space rock. We will practice our yoga sequences to deeply grounding music and I will use earthy aromatherapy in class, to stimulate our connection with nature, to be fiercely present with our flesh and bone.
And if you can't make it to the Shambhala studio this week, you can still work on cultivating a sense of grounding with the Ayurvedic recipe below (a guest post by Folkklore) and a guided meditation as my gift to you. Click here to download mp3 meditation.
If you are coming to class, I look forward to seeing you on the mat
Milk and Ghee: The Great Rejuvenator!
Guest post by my exceptionally wise and well read woman friend Gemma Davies
You’re focusing on Muladhara chakra this week, and that means considering how grounded, rested and centred your experience of living feels for you.
As human beings of the modern world, I'm guessing you’re bustin’ and grindin’ out the good stuff for many hours every day… and that’s both rewarding and exhilarating!
But how do you feel once you’re home and hosed?
Safe? Sound? Relaxed?
Or… is your mind still racing? Your adrenaline still pumping? Your energy still buzzing?
What about when you finally hit the hay? Think about your experience of getting to sleep... Easy? Cosy? Fuzzywuzzy? Or are you fretful, frazzled and lucidly peering into the future whilst periodically checking your email on your smartphone?
Looking after your ‘root’ chakra means nourishing up your cells and tending to your sleep. If this sounds dreadfully dull to you, consider how much more you’ll be able to bring to your life’s work when you’ve had an incredible night’s sleep… Imagine the jive in your step, the clarity of your ideas and your energy to take action! BAM!
Ayurvedic medicine offers a most simple and truly delicious, nocturnal food-remedy to help settle and calm even the most rambunctiously unbalanced Muladhara chakra. It’s easy, doable, actionable tonight! And that’s… Warm Spiced Milk with Ghee…
Like all good, sweet and true medicine, Warm Spiced Milk with Ghee works it’s magic gently, over time and distance. Commit to it, nightly… Ritualise… Swoon softly into the experience… Cherish your mug of goodness in a warm, aromatic bath or snuggle deep into comfy covers with an indulgently uplifting (and non-work related!) booky wook…
And then… Explore your experience of mornings in the coming days… Still rushed and desperately grappling for the caffeine and a sugar-loaded muffinish thing? Or is morning life starting to feel a little more grounded, solid, sustained?
You might even find yourself getting off the bus or train a stop early and enjoying a leisurely stroll through the park to the office!
Here, is your recipe for Warm Spiced Milk with Ghee… Let it Change you!
1 cup of whole, organic milk (the less processed, the better!)
½ tablespoon organic, grassfed ghee
Pinch of powdered cardamom
1. So simple! Gently warm all ingredients in a small saucepan on low heat, stirring gently, until your ghee is melted and your nightcap is aromatic and warmed.
2. Pour into your favourite mug, sip with sumptuous intention, and relax.