Bringing Our Hands Together At Our Heart

How are you doing?   Take a moment and listen to what arises for you today – honour the truth of how you are, in this moment, in this breath.  I don’t want a patterned answer, or one you might think I want to hear, I want to know how you truly are in this moment – on all ends of the spectrum. 

Last week I was guided to explore Anjali Mudra a little deeper by one of my own teachers, Barrie Risman.  We’ve been exploring this practice in my community classes as well. 

Anjali means “reverence” and refers to the honouring of the divinity within ourselves and all beings. When we come into Anjali mudra we are balancing all of our polarities – within and without. Joseph and Lilian Le Page remind us that this gesture directs breath, awareness and energy into the center of the chest, supporting us to turn inwards toward our authentic being and understanding on a subconscious level that we are all connected.

Anjali mudra calms the mind, reducing our stress and potentially lowering the blood pressure.  This posture helps to release tension through the shoulder blades, and supports the health of your immune system.

As we consciously bring our action oriented hands to meet at our heart center, we honour the guidance found within. When we meet ourselves here, the answers often flow clearly through us – not always easy, but the answers we seek become clear. This reminder supports us in making decisions and traveling our path with compassion and integrity.

As my hands came together this morning, I was filled with a memory. Many moons ago I studied various massage and cancer trainings with Tracy Walton, she invited us to massage as if it was the last time the person you were working with was going to be touched – or perhaps the last time you were ever going to touch someone.  She asked us to really show up and be present to not only our time massaging – but to our whole life experience – to live as if it was equally the first time and the last time you were here experiencing this moment. Arriving with curiosity and departing with reverence. The sacredness that ripples into our life experience with this perspective is beautiful. I extend this invitation to you, to be present in every moment; from exploring Anjali mudra as your hands make contact, to holding a hand, to sipping your tea, to yes, even doing the dishes. 

Sometimes I think about how my life would be without these practices, and then I return to my mat.

Please join your hands in front of your heart with your palms facing together, fingers directed up towards the sky.

Press your finger pads, the base of your fingers, and the inner and outer edges of your hands gently together

Allow a slight openness at the center of your palms.

Fanning your fingers apart from one another – honouring the space around your heart.

The outer borders of your thumbs coming into contact with your sternum ( breastbone).

Relax your shoulders back and down, with your elbows held slightly away from the body and the spine naturally aligned. 

Bring a slight nod to your head, and follow the gentle journey of your breath

I bring my hands together at my heart center, and I bow to you.

With much Love, Amber

xo

If you’d like to practice together, I offer live in person and online zoom classes, (which will be taking a break through the month of August and resuming in September) and as an additional support for you to practice on your own schedule, but together, I’ve created a video library and a monthly video subscription

Click here to find out more details about our Soul Wisdom Cards.

Your Whole Self

I find so many things swimming around in my thoughts these days, I think perhaps it’s safe to say this may be the case for many of us.

As we’ve moved through this past year and a half, we’ve been given so much to reflect on, and this continues. Identifying priorities in our lives as we understand our own truth a little more, and maybe finding the courage within ourselves to speak that truth with a little more strength.

I think it’s important to also take some time for yourself to acknowledge the collective experience of grief this period in our lives has brought each of us – for lives lost, for moments missed, for forced separation from those we love. I’m really feeling that collective experience right now. This is going to look differently for each of us, but it is felt in some way by all of us. I strongly believe we need to carve out some intentional time to integrate, find out the deeper meaning for you, honour whatever emotions arise and take time to be honest with yourself with how you’re doing – deep down inside. As we transition to this next chapter of our lives, really savour heartfelt hugs, embrace your connections and nurture those relationships where you find unconditional love and reciprocity.

Time on our mats can be a profound place to reflect and to support this integration – in our bodies and through our breath.

It’s easy to get carried along with those around you if you don’t take this time, swimming in all the thoughts. For your own mental, emotional and spiritual health – take some time to ground yourself in how you’re doing now, in this moment.

This morning as I sat in meditation on one of my favorite moss covered rocks I was given the honour of listening in on 2 owls as they had an early morning conversation from the treetops. These moments are magic, and they seem to bring me back to my center without trying to get anywhere. I just seem to arrive.

The sun was rising, the mosquitoes were making themselves known, and these 2 wise beings connecting overhead. I felt like I was listening in on the most sacred of conversations. When I wended my way back down the path to my home, I came across a brilliant quote (certainly not by accident) which I kind of think we all need to hear right now, and perhaps what the owls were sharing with me this morning.

We don’t have to compromise, ever, and settle for an almost version of who we are. We do not have to conform to some external truth, some version of what someone else is telling us is better, or more right, or more holy, more human. We don’t have to fit in. Isn’t that the most blessed thing we could ever be told, or could remember? We don’t have to fit in. We don’t have to contort who we are in order to fit a mold that was never meant for us

Meggan Watterson

Don’t be afraid to have different opinions, or make different choices, especially right now – honour you, there’s only one of you, so if you’re busy being like everyone else then we lose the gift of what only you can bring into this world.

It’s also okay to take your time with your reemergence, as we begin again. Think things through for yourself right now, and lead with compassion (starting with yourself). Try to refrain from judging others for seeing the world differently than you, instead learn from one another – and lead by letting your whole self be seen.

Our world can change in the blink of an eye – so what are you waiting for?

With so much love, Amber

I just want to acknowledge the owl picture above was taken by my dear friend (and soul wisdom cards co-creator) Jessica Hibberd. The owls this morning didn’t let me see them, this was taken a few months ago.

If you’d like to practice together, I offer live online zoom classes, and as an additional support for you to practice on your own schedule, but together, I’ve created a video library and a monthly video subscription

I do want to share that I will be taking a teaching break through the month of August – time for me to integrate and renew before the autumn is upon us! My Patreon videos will continue, but apart from my Monday afternoon Carebridge classes – I will be taking a break from live online classes and resuming (online and in person) classes in September.

Click here to find out more details about our Soul Wisdom Cards.

Love Is An Action

Today feels like a good day for a little deeper reflection. I don’t know about you, but it’s been quite a week! Take a moment and check in with yourself.

What does this breath feel like? How does your body maybe need a little extra support today? This is where we start from.

It is my hopes that within the window of  Canada Day yesterday, that perhaps there was a moment of reflection for you. Maybe not the celebration of days gone by, but perhaps some time to reflect on the trauma that the Indigenous people of this land have experienced and the pain that continues.  Holding so many in my heart these days, often it feels overwhelming, but then we take a deep breath and know just how important this safe holding is right now.

I know through my own personal commitment that supporting yourself to show up for yourself on a daily basis and doing what you know you need to support yourself in body, mind and spirit; provides stability, gives you strength, and can help build your own resilience and internal resources.

 If we can’t even take care of ourselves, how then can we support others?

I know that being called to be an active support for the injustices in our world asks this of us.  It takes strength, courage and determination to break patterns. My friend Anna Karuna Egan reminded me in an email this morning that living with wisdom and compassion is possible, her teacher taught her that Love is an Action, I think I needed this reminder today. Thank you Anna for inspiring me to share my own thoughts today.

We can act differently as we move forward, being led by love. Don’t underestimate YOUR actions, and the ripples that happen, often with the simplest and smallest of steps forward.  The more we attune to love, the more easefully it shows up in our lives as a constant, and the more we support not only ourselves, but others to heal..  

It’s important to have uncomfortable conversations and to listen to peoples stories. It’s also important to know in your heart of hearts, that you can make very different choices for yourself going forward.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

With so much love,

Amber 

If you’d like to practice together, I offer live online zoom classes, and as an additional support for you to practice on your own schedule, but together, I’ve created a video library and a monthly video subscription

Click here to find out more details about our Soul Wisdom Cards.

Summer Solstice Blessings

Happy Summer Solstice Blessings To YOU!!

A time we celebrate the light, our inner fire, the obstacles we’ve overcome, our community, our power, our gardens as they grow, (maybe some compassion towards the groundhogs that – yes – they live here to, deep breaths), and we commit to taking steps to nourish ourselves and one another!  

Summer Solstice is a time we also honour the tilting of the earth wrapping us in the longest day of sunlight of our calendar year.  We move through the cycles of seasons and witness our own rhythms as they ebb and flow. 

With every sunrise we’re actually offered a new beginning.

I feel like over the past year, we’ve been reminded in numerous ways, to not live with regrets, because wow, the unexpected can occur at any moment.  If you moved through our circle of balance last week, perhaps take that learning and actually make those shifts – or at least baby steps towards them. Regardless of all the confusion around us, you know you can find clarity within. Clarity of YOUR next steps in your life, but first we need to commit to our self care to have the space to hear that guidance. 

I invite you to light a candle today, and honour your connection to the light.  Get your hands and feet in the dirt, and honour your connection to the earth. Honour the goodness inside of you, and the impact you bring forth with your actions. 

Before I close today, I want to remind you of a powerful practice Sat Dharam Kaur shared with me last year at this time. Carve out a little window to consciously reflect and write out 27 visions for the life ahead of you.  Not with the intention of wanting to be somewhere you’re not, but rather as a way of celebrating all the seeds inside of you. Try to nourish them if you can, rather than pushing them deeper into the darkness.  The simpler the seeds the more profound they can actually be. Feel it in your breath and in your bones, see yourself in those moments of your life, remind yourself why life is worth living. 

Happy Solstice, from my heart to yours,

With love

Amber

xo

If you’d like to practice together, I offer weekly live online zoom classes, and as an additional support for you to practice on your own schedule, but together, I’ve created a video library and a monthly video subscription

Click here to find out more details about our Soul Wisdom Cards, including where to purchase your own deck.

Finding Space – Wednesday Wellness Reflection

Sometimes in the sleepless nights seeds are planted.   These days sleep is definitely a rare commodity,  however I’m finding if I can stop tossing and turning and resisting the consistent wake ups, I notice ideas start to flow in, priorities become obvious and greater clarity around where there needs to be space in my own life is put on centre stage in the meandering of my thoughts.

It’s really easy to hold off on all the uncomfortable things and to keep spinning our wheels, during those windows of our lives we often hold the shields a little closer to our bodies.  There comes a point when it’s imperative to create some space between your body and the protection so you can breathe and truly discover who you even are and what you need – independent of everyone else’s ideas.  I love the image of a bed of moss surrounding my own body, moving with my breath – rather than preventing it,  and being permeable to a healthy flow of what is needed both within and without.

As I write this, the birds are just waking up and the early hours of dawn are approaching.  I feel sleepy, but alive and grateful for the magic of our natural world as I gaze out my window.  I am a part of it all, and I realize that a little bit more every day.  The treasures we find outside in our natural world are also found within, but again we need the space to discover, and remember, what those are.

I just finished reading the book Big Magic (Thank you Sarah and Nicki), by Elizabeth Gilbert.  There is a quote that really resonated with me, and I’ve posted it up in my office as a daily reminder.

“…because your life is short and rare and amazing and miraculous, and you want to do really interesting things and make really interesting things while you’re still here…….

It’s what we all want.

And you have treasures hidden within you – extraordinary treasures – and so do I, and so does everyone around us.  And bringing those treasures to light takes work and faith and focus and courage and hours of devotion, and the clock is ticking, and the world is spinning, and we simply do not have time anymore to think so small”

Ahhhh I get goosebumps when I read this.  And those treasures – they may be the simplest offerings; your nourishing and simple vegetable garden, your rose bush, or your incredible cookies that you bake, the way you listen, or the one poem that needed to be written in your lifetime, the care of your children (human and nonhuman), or perhaps the strumming of your guitar played quietly for your soul and your soul alone. The simple treasures are often the most miraculous, remember that.

Elizabeth’s words remind me to stay connected with the moss, making space for my personal practice, reminding me of the magic inside of me –  and you.  It reminds me to listen with all that I am when the birds sing, to breathe fully and completely with every cycle of breath, and to open my eyes with the wonder of a child as the daffodils emerge from their winter slumber – before they fade away.

As my mom fades away, I am reminded of my brief visit here on this earth – in this body, with these unique gifts, for this cycle of my life.  It’s my choice how I show up, and the space I let myself inhabit.

I ask you to find some space to breathe between the shields life hands you, maybe imagine them as a bed of moss wrapping you in love, and offering you protection in a way that doesn’t force you to stop breathing – but rather to start being. 

Taking time to honour the earth as we celebrate Earth Day tomorrow , giving gratitude for the trees who support us to breathe.  David Attenborough reminds us the Earth will continue long after we’re gone, so let’s recommit to our care and stewardship of our home  while we’re here, as we discover our magic during our time here.

Much love. always

Amber

If you’d like to practice with me I teach weekly live online zoom classes , and as an additional support for you to practice on your own schedule I’ve created a video library and a monthly video subscription

Don’t ever hesitate to reach out, my support is here holding you in my heart.

Photo by Jasmin Mori

The Kindness Of Strangers – Wednesday Wellness Reflection

My first Ontario winter living out in the country, and some days the snow doesn’t stop falling.

We make decisions sometimes; stop at the corner store, run that extra errand, or perhaps to stop and check the mail on the way home.  I decided to stop and check the mail a few short days ago.  Driving on our country roads you need to pull over to hug the edge as another car comes to pass, and sometimes that hug can pull us right in.

Within seconds, me alongside my two little companions, found ourselves in the ditch.  Over the years, and especially over the past year as we’ve navigated the pandemic, I have come to  realize how much we need eachother.  How much all of life, needs eachother.

Reciprocity.

The kindness of everyone who passed, offering their help.  A beautiful young soul drove the 15 minutes away to borrow his grandmothers tractor.  I didn’t know if he was going to come back, trusting……surrendering into the ditch, breathing with my companions………….and trusting.  When did we stop dropping everything to help one another, especially when we need it the most.  Or when did that become a rare occurence.  I have shared this story with a few friends and I am surprised at how shocked they are by the kindness of strangers.   Once upon a time, there was no question, we helped without hesitation.

Suddenly, we saw the tractor meandering along the snow covered country roads, and this incredible experience of joy bubbled up from inside of me.  Who knew a tractor could bring so much relief and so much happiness (I guess it depends on who you ask).  I turned to my 11 year old son and asked him what he thought I should do to thank this caring young man, in his wise 11 years of life he asked me

Why would you need to do anything? 

If you gave him something in return for his offer of help, he would feel obligated to do the same if he ever needed help, can’t you just say thank you and accept the help?  If you gave him money, he would feel bad asking for help if he didn’t have money.  You would want the same if the situation were reversed. 

Mom, just promise to pay it forward. 

Ahhh my eyes filled with tears, and it made me sad that in our society there are often strings attached, the simple kindness of strangers – helping eachother because it’s why we’re here – at the base of it all, how can we be of service to the greater whole, for no other reason than our innate nature to care.

I am so grateful, and will never walk away when someone has fallen.  This doesn’t have to look big, and there needn’t ever be an expectation of anything in return.  It’s why we’re here.  In community we all do our part, we bring our strengths to the table and we offer our gifts.  Those gifts are anything from knowing how to drive a tractor and having an open heart to help the lady and her 2 children as  they find themselves stuck in a ditch with no way out, to offering a love filled soup to nourish your family or your neighbour, fixing a pipe, finding a book off a shelf for someone, or writing a masterpiece as a creative expression of your soul and balm for the soul of others…….

Reciprocity; nurturing the circle of helping hands, we offer from a place of compassion and gratitude, and we learn to accept, and the circle continues.

This week I ask you to take a bit of time to ponder a few thoughts

  • How would you respond if someone needed help, a stranger?  In small and big ways?
  • How have you recieved the support of someone else’s kindness, often in unexpected ways?
  • What does community mean to you, and what do you think your offering to your community is?
  • What does reciprocity mean to you? What might that look like in your own life?
  • Consider deep gratitude and appreciation as a form of reciprocity.
  • What are you grateful for today?

I’m grateful for tractors, for a lovely young man who offered help, for the snow and the ditch that offered me this learning, and I’m grateful I live in such a special community.

Thank you for taking the time to share my thoughts today, as I watch the snow continue to fall outside my window.

Much love

Amber

xo

Contemplating Our Gifts – Wednesday Wellness Reflection

Sending you a big hug today, I feel like we all could use an extra hug these days.

A few weeks ago I was blessed to be a case study for a dear friend (who happens to be my husband) who recently completed the Core Gift Discovery Workshop, to help support people to dive deeper into themselves and explore the unique gifts we all come here to share.   What I found most impactful, was that some of the more traumatic events of my life were what came through as I discovered my own core gift.  Often its these pivotal moments that don’t always make sense that inform what we commmit our lives to, where we find passion and deep inspiration.

I invite you to take some time over the next little while and contemplate a few ideas.

When do you feel at home in yourself? Or is this a foreign concept?

Contemplate the idea of purpose and gifts.  What do they mean to you personally?   This may be woven into the fabric of your working life, or it may be an area of your life where you recharge or you seem to keep going back to – fueled by passion, emotion, and a deep genuine concern.   Your working life may help to support your purpose, it’s not always that clear.

Perhaps pull out your journal and  write or sit in silent contemplation, writing and expressing without editing.  It amazes me how often we edit or script our responses – even in our personal journals.  It’s time to drop the scripting and show up – exactly as you are – life is to short to be any other way.  At this juncture in our lives, it’s also a good time to reflect on what you truly care about; what do you think deserves more of your time and energy, and does it also support the whole?

The seeds start within us and the way they are expressed are uniquely ours – but there is a reciprocity that’s necessary, like the seeds in our gardens.   It’s not always easy to recognize that those seeds are waiting for nourishment, deep inside of us, or what that nourishment needs to look like.  When we’re able to move from a place which honours what we contribute to the greater collective (no matter how small or large),  feeling deep gratitude for the seeds we contain, and then we step forward in our lives in a purposeful way – this is when magic happens.

As you ponder the presence of the seeds inside of  you, I wonder what arises?

Is there an area of your life that ignites passion inside of you or fill you with strong emotions that urge you forward?  OR is there something that keeps coming up for you, maybe like a soft whisper, wrapped in curiousity?  Hmmm if you listened to that whisper and offered that curiousity some attention, I wonder what that would look like for you?

What did those hard lessons in your life teach you?? Often the difficult lessons are when we’re shown a glimpse of what our core gifts may be, or they may evoke something so strongly inside of us, that they show us where our voice is needed.  This is not always easy, this I do understand.

I believe we all have the potential to tap into something greater than us, and our seeds which hold are gifts as sacred, are a larger and a necessary part of the whole.  As Elizabeth Gilbert reminds us (thank you Sarah), can you acknowledge any fears that hold you back, invite them along for the ride (suppressing them only gives them more power), tap in, explore, nurture what is stirring softly or loudly making itself known from within you, fear and all.

If you want to move through the core gifts discovery process, there are many amazing humans who can support you, you can go to The Core Gift Institute to find out more.

Sending you so much love, and reverence for your core gifts – whether they are shining brightly or hidden, awaiting the perfect moment to be discovered and nurtured into life.

Love Amber

xo

“Every human being is born with some sort of gift, and inclination or an instinct that can become a full-blown mastery.  We may not see our gift for what it is.  Having seen it we may choose not to accept the gift and its consequences for our life.  Or, having claimed our gift, we may not be willing to do the hard work necessry to nurture it.  But none of these evasions can alter the fact that the gift is ours.  Each of us is a master at something, and part of becoming fully alive is to discover and develop our birthright competence.” 

Parker Palmer

Wednesday Wellness Reflection

Welcome to this week’s Wednesday wellness reflection.

Beautiful YOU!

I invite you to take a moment and close your eyes, or find a calming focus point.  Tune into your breath and notice how it feels flowing in and flowing out.

Is it difficult to concentrate on that rhythm?

 Does this simple breath practice support a calm internal state or do you notice a wave of anxiety? Try if you can to just stay curious to what’s happening for you in this moment.

If your mind is wandering,  perhaps invite your attention back to your breath, consciously invite ease and peace into your body and try to be gentle with yourself.

In this space of stillness, I wonder how you’re doing? 

Take your time here, honouring however you show up right now.

I went for a walk in the woods the other day searching for peace and quiet.  As I stepped outside however things were different, the normal quiet I have been accustomed to in the forest, had been I felt robbed, by the sound of a jackhammer echoing through the trees.

I was craving quiet as it was my first day alone at our home after 6 weeks, needing time to decompress, I had a strong desire and raw base need for silence.

With that first step I could feel my body growing more tense, annoyed at how they could ruin my time of solitude.  I traveled through irritation, to annoyance, to what seemed to be anger bubbling up inside of me.  As I walked and breathed into the whole emotional soup that was steadily brewing, I  could sense all the emotions from not just that moment, but from this past year, coming up to the surface, triggered yes, by the jackhammer – it felt like they were breaking through the stone of how I thought I was, allowing me a window into the truth of my core in this moment.

At a certain point I found myself sitting beside a tree, tears streaming down my cheeks, no longer aware of the jackhammer.

Something happened in that moment, a deep sigh of relief, for that sound that only minutes before brought up anger slowly urged me deeper – deeper into the woods and in that journey, deeper into myself.

Slowly my breath too deepened, and I could truly connect with the contact points beneath my own body as I leaned into the constant comforting support and nurturing embrace that I find only as I sit upon and connect with the earth.  As the soup simmered I sat in silence, gratitude seemed to flow through me for the workers who are simply helping my neighbours to create a home in the forest, they were not intentionally trying to steal away my silence.  Gratitude for the miracle that has brought me and my family to these healing woods.  I felt gratitude, believe it or not,  for the sound that urged me deeper inside, yes the jackhammer itself.

I was able to detach from the external distractions, realizing to immerse myself in that much needed quiet I first needed to find it in myself, regardless of what was happening around me.  There is no cave that can bring us that silence, it is what many spend their whole lives searching for, and meanwhile it’s always here patiently waiting inside.

We talk about this so often in our yoga classes, and we experience glimpses of the practice with the hopes that those glimpses will come with us as we roll up our mats.  Sometimes those distractions or external “annoyances” we attach to and blame for a practice that we feel didn’t serve us, that pulled us out of our center – however often those are the times on our mats that often serve us the most – helping us to realize sometimes how far from our own centre we have actually strayed.

With everything happening in the world, I feel the fragility of life a little more these days, recommitting to my own life experience for this brief time I have in this body.  I am also reminded to step out of the experience of I a little more often, and reflect on the bigger picture, all the pieces in the grander puzzle.

If you can, I encourage you to take a little bit of time over the next while to:

Think about your own motivations as you move through the ups and downs of your days. 

Think about the way you respond or react to life.

Consider the impact of the stress, the pain, and the uncertainty in our global community on you. Are you able to acknowledge how perhaps your feeling the feelings that are being felt outside of yourself.  Hmm, you may want to read that again, less confusing on the second read through!

Can you be gentle with yourself, and carve out windows for you – despite the jackhammers, and all the other external distractions that will assuredly arise in those moments.

Consider what triggers you, and perhaps dive deeper.

Transformation is not accomplished by tentative wading at the edge.” – Robin Wall Kimmerer

Thank you for taking the time to consider my thoughts, I hope this reflection helped you in some small way on your own journey.

Please know I’m holding you in my heart,

With so much love,

Amber

xo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you want to practice with Amber on your own schedule, in the comfort of your own home, consider subscribing to her exlusive weekly wellness capsules and practice videos.  To find out more click here

Where Are Your Roots?

I am so grateful you are here as we explore this weeks Wednesday Wellness Reflection.

As I ponder our practice today the snow glistens on the tree branches and the sun is shining, nourishing the earth and the trees that take root upon her sacred ground.   Personally I love the snow (for brief windows that is),  gazing upon the magical white flakes – each so precious and so incredibly unique, hmmmm like each of us.   I consider the winter as  an invitation for a little deeper introspection, a time to cocoon so we are clear when the spring arrives.

Today I offer you the exploration of tree.  Take a few moments to connect with your breath, feeling into the rhythm you arrive with – in this moment.  Notice how you feel today, are there parts of you that need a little extra care?  Take as much time as you need here, and then when you feel ready we’ll explore this powerful posture.

In Sanskrit tree pose is translated as Vrikshasana, Vriksha means “tree”.  In this posture we explore balance, steady and rooted as we bring one foot against the lower leg or inner thigh of the other.  Your arms may raise from prayer pose at the heart and slowly stretch over head just as the limbs of a tree stretch up towards the sunlight. You will wend  your own way into your perfect tree today.   Some days my tree is found lying on the ground covered in moss, somedays I embody a brilliant Charlie Brown Tree, and others I rise into my favorite majestic white pine.

As you approach your practice today, I suggest you also call on the support of a chair, a tree, or wall if you’re working with your balance, being gentle with wherever you are.

To come into tree feel your feet grounded, sensing your own roots traveling from the soles of your feet down deep into the earth.  We steady ourselves on one leg, engaging the muscles so our trunk is strong – but our knee remains soft.  Our opposite leg slowly lifts either resting toes on the ground with your heel against your lower leg or ankle, or perhaps it raises up from the ground resting against the inner aspect of your calf, or it may go even higher pressed against your inner thigh.  We create stability by counter balancing our lifted leg and our sturdy trunk.  As we find strength here, our hands come up to rest at heart center in prayer pose or they may lift up towards the sky, stretching your branches out exploring.  Keep your gaze at a steady point, and don’t forget to breathe.

 I offer you some reflections to ponder in tree pose:

Where are my roots, are they solid or just skimming the surface?

Have my roots spread?  Do they continue to deepen?

When the wind blows do I stand tall, or am I blown out of the ground?

Where do my roots get their nourishment? Am I feeding my roots, or depriving them of that nourishment? 

Which roots are mine, and where have my roots become tangled with something or someone else’s?  

Am I willing to prune my tree, releasing that which stands in my way for optimal growth?  

There is a lot of medicine in the tree.  I recommend coming into the posture 2 times on each side if that resonates for you, stay focused on your roots, feel your breath, invite ease into your body as you stand strong.

“The roots of all goodness lie in the soil of appreciation for goodness.” —Dalai Lama

What are you grateful for today?  Take some time, and feel your gratitude right in your heart, send it out into the world.

I am grateful for the trees; they provide shelter, oxygen to help nourish, homes for so many, medicine in it’s bark, needles, leaves, flowers and for all the bounty they offer us in numerous ways.

I am grateful for the history of my own roots, and all the rocks along the way.

With so much love from ME to YOU

Amber

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A morning walks reflection

Breaking Out Of Boxes To Be Who You Truly Are

Welcome To Your Wednesday Wellness Reflection

Flowers don’t open and close according to who walks by. They embrace all of what they are and show it to the world around them. The peony doesn’t try to compete with the cherry blossom, and the cherry blossom doesn’t try to compete with the tulip – they own what they are and trust the timing of their true nature. You’re being called to do the same.

Rebecca Campbell

Do you own the truth of who you are?

Or do you change depending on whose company you keep?

Regardless of past patterns, or how others sometimes like to put you in a box – it’s important at this stage of our lives to break out of any boxes.

In yogic anatomy we think about this being human in terms of having 10 bodies that comprise components of our unified self. We consider all these precious aspects; the good stuff and the stuff we often try to hide away, understanding that there are many elements to living a balanced life. On our practice mats we have the opportunity to remember that we are more than just a body, or just a mind, we have the opportunity to reconnect with all these amazing elements that make us whole.

In last week’s reflection, I mentioned taking just 3 minutes in your day – is it that hard to find for your self care.

Well it definitely can be, I understand. Being in another round of lockdown with my boys home, I am juggling the responsibilities of not only my own care, my professional responsibilities, but also the new territory of having us all home yet again, establishing a new rhythm with school, work and hmmmm self-care.

Finding 3 minutes is not always that simple, but it is essential to maintaining peace of mind and moving from a place of wholeness and truth, especially when we’re being challenged. Believe me, I understand.

If that window becomes blurry, be gentle with yourself as tomorrow is yet another opportunity to find at least those 3 minutes.

The place we’ve been finding most of our deep breaths together has been in our backyard forest classroom, where we’ve also been greeted by many friends whom we share this land with. A beautiful buck, many white tailed deer, our friend the wise owl, all the winged beings, the voles, and our constant companion and new friend the woodshed bat. Breathing in the healing that the forest offers us, I find my 10 bodies and all the aspects that come together within me, seem to easefully weave together as one.

From a yogic lens, what are your 10 bodies??

This is a very brief snapshot, simply intended if you’d like to keep reading, to give you a little more insight and a consideration in supporting these elements within yourself. Which might I add, spending time in nature is the best medicine to help you integrate all these beautiful aspects of yourself.  Perhaps this isn’t of interest, but I thought you would like the choice to read on or not.

I realize, this is a bit of a longer piece, some food for thought.

1) The Soul Body – your inner light and foundation, where you connect with feelings of safety. When strong and balanced you easefully live from your heart and there exists a gentle flow with the ups and downs of life. We accept easier, and we find comfort and stability in our inner guidedance. To support : Singing, dancing, heart opening postures and practices, truthfully anything that helps you feel alive and inner joy.

2) The Negative Mind – provides you with discernment and protection.  Important as it helps to warn you of danger, helping to keep you safe, strengthens your trust in your own intuition and personal judgement. To support: Commit to yourself care, no matter what –  commit and value that time for you. Quiet time in meditation is very supportive, practicing saying no when something doesn’t feel supportive.

3) The Positive Mind – allows you to see all possibilities and opportunities in front of you. The positive mind creates an expansive worldview within, it supports an inner framework of hope and trust. To support: Use positive affirmations, doing postures to strengthen and support your naval point, open around your heart centre, waking up the energy inside of your body every day.

4) The Neutral Mind – This aspect of yourself corresponds to your heart centre, allows you to weigh in the positive and the negative coming to a neutral and equanimous place. To support: adopt a daily silent meditation practice, working with breath practices where we allow a pause after our inhale and again after our exhale, tuning into your heart centre when making decisions. Increased awareness of breath patterns.

5) The Physical Body – This is your sacred body temple, it requires your consistent and dedicated care. When your physical body is at ease you’re able to more fully participate in life. This also represents our teacher aspect and gives us confidence when we feel strong physically. To support: move your body daily, nourish yourself with water and foods that support you, ensure a balance between exercise and healing rest.

6) The Arcline –An aspect of your energy body. This gives you the ability to clearly project your truth out to the world, and supports you to feel stable and centered.  This corresponds physically with your heart center and your pituitary gland. To support: spend time in meditation with your eye focus at the point between your eyebrows, and explore movements that move the arms across the front of the body and over the head.

7) The Aura – The protective energy around your body. A strong aura supports you to attract what you need to thrive, and to repel anything that drains you or negatively affects your life force. Helps you to feel confident and secure. To support: hot and cold showers, dry brushing, practices that help you to clear negative energy and create healthy boundaries, meditation, singing, cleansing pranayama.

8) The Praanic Body: Life giving force, the flow of energy through you. Helps you to feel awake and alive, and often more trusting that you are exactly where you need to be and have clarity in steps you need to take to move forward in your life. To support: Any pranayama (breathwork) practices.

9) Subtle Body: Your sensitivity, your patience, and your calmness in whatever life hands you. Your ability to respond to your intuitive knowing. To support: Quiet listening meditation, and committing – with an open heart – to a spiritual practice for an extended amount of time.

10) The Radiant Body: This is your radiance, your courage, your personal power and presence. When this is strong you feel you are the flow of life, and attract what you need to do what you’re here to do in this lifetime. To support: daily exercise, pranayama, dancing and singing, surrounding yourself with people that uplift you, committing to your daily self-care.

Sending you love as you travel on your path, holding you in my heart

Till next week,
Amber
xo

If you want to practice with Amber on your own schedule, in the comfort of your own home, consider subscribing to her exlusive weekly wellness capsules and practice videos.  White Pine members also get unlimited access to online classes with their membership.  To find out more click here