“There is a voice that doesn’t use words. Listen” – Rumi
Welcome to your chakras, illuminating discs of swirling energy in your subtle body. In this series, the chakras become symbols, gateways to a deeper understanding of the self. Let their archetypes speak to you, teach you, whisper their secrets into you so that you may discover more ease, healing, and insight on this path.
Finally, we reach the top of this illuminating system, the crown of your head.
From earth we came (Muladhara Chakra). We flowed into water from there (Svadhisthana Chakra) and into the throes of fire (Manipura Chakra). Then, we entered the heart (Anahata Chakra) and onward, we spoke our truths (Visuddha Chakra). We saw ourselves (Ajna Chakra). And now, we know our Self.
Life is rife with everything that is: successes and failures, good moods and the blues, unbearable tragedy and overwhelming beauty, painful loss and enriching gain, excitement and boredom, strength and weakness, immense happiness and its equal in sadness, wellness and sickness, love and heartbreak, on and on… and then, most of the time, everything that lies in between.
There is, however, something that sits beyond all of this, something unmovable, unshakeable by life’s meanderings. It is the greatest Mystery. And the way that life gets its meaning. It is the knowledge that abides in our connection to the Divine. It is faith.
SEEKING SPIRIT MEDITATION
If possible, hike to the top of something (a mountain, a boulder, a roof…) with a blanket, some flowers, a candle (don’t forget matches) and any other items you think will help create a sacred space. Lovingly lay your blanket down, and set up your altar while contemplating each item’s meaning to you…
Assume a cross-legged seat on your blanket. Slide your right hand on top of your heart space, and let your left fingertips graze the ground beside you. Close your eyes. Sense into your seat, feeling the solidness beneath you, the support of your connection to the earth. Out of that support, allow your spine to rise, the crown of your head to soar into the heavens…
Connect to the flow of your breath. Feel the sacred quality of that connection immediately. This process of inhale and exhale that is with you for the duration of this body’s time here…
Sensing each rise and fall—each coming and going—in its fullness, ask yourself: Where does this breath come from?
Is it possible for you to consider that as you breathe in and out, something beyond your wildest thoughts is breathing you out and in. This force is providing the very breath to you which sustains your life. It is within you and all around you. It is the stuff of everything, and beyond this body and this life. Can you open to such a possibility?
If you can, allow yourself to name this force in your life: Spirit, Mother, God, Love… Contemplate this presence… What might it look like to you, feel like to you? When do you feel most connected to the sacred?
Allow yourself to feel this force in your life.
When life feels sacred, and you feel connected to something beyond the days in and the days out, you will feel supported in the playing out of the human condition. So, make life sacred: meditate, draw from your imagination, study something intensely, appreciate what you already possess, look people in the eye, think critically, live for depth…
“We live on a blue planet that circles around a ball of fire next to a moon that moves the sea, and you don’t believe in miracles?”
Photo by Mike Regan for Wanderlust.
Andrea Manitsas—affectionately called “Anj”—is a yoga teacher based in San Francisco and Berkeley, where her Oms resonate down the block and around the corner. She is known for a bhakti-filled class with a whole lotta soul and a fierce flow. Andrea also writes and edits. And travels—a lot. She takes her teaching on the road with yoga retreats around the warm world.