Monday, February 17, 2020

March 2020 - Harmonizing Energies Arrive

March's Theme: Harmony


Are you ready to harmonize your inner and outer world
March ushers in the Spring Equinox, a day of balance of light and dark. The energies on the planet are harmonizing, and at least for those of us in the NorthEast, we are moving out of our cold Winter's nap and into the blossoming of Spring.

Many people struggle with the Winter months due to the lack of light. By now we can start to feel the growing light and welcome the longer days. The underlying energy, however, is that of harmony. With each new bud on the tree or sprout on the ground, we feel more at peace in the world. This rebirth gives us hope, hope that the world, no matter how crazy it can sometimes feel, will always continue to move along.

Our inner worlds can often be a place of chaos. Often ruled by our mental states and emotions, we constantly strive to find balance. For some, prolonged periods of darkness, like the winter, can usher in a phase where the focus on the negative aspects of these states continues to rule. The best tools during the winter are to welcome in the period of rest and inner work with meditation, warm baths, snuggling with loved ones, etc. However, most people focus on the lack of light instead of the comfort in the darkness.

Look at the yin-yang Taoist symbol at the top of the page. There is balance and harmony here. There is not a lack of darkness. No, far from that. Instead the darkness is shown as equal to the light. More so, the light cannot even exist without the darkness. Notice that within the light, there is always a pinch of the dark. This is a Taoist perspective. For those who light to focus on light and positivity, this can be somewhat challenging. So, how do we acknowledge that with harmony comes periods of struggle and challenge just as well as abundance and flow? Again, allowing and accepting those times as growth periods instead of feeling victimized by everything that happens can go a long way. And of course, a couple of our tools in this toolbox are our yoga and meditative practices.

So what about our outer world? How do we harmonize our outer world? The key may be to start within. If we can focus on harmonizing our inner world, the only thing that we really can control, then the energy will start to affect our outer worlds. In order for enough change to the outer world to occur, enough people have to harmonize their inner worlds first. So, its time to allow this energy to come in! In 2020, an angelic year of light and ascending energies, we have the capacity to harmonize quicker than before. We just need to focus on doing so.

* * * * * * * * * * *

I, for one, am ready for harmony. I have felt discord for far too long. These lower energies bring up fear in me, and fear grows into other negative energies and thought patterns. Can you feel discord? I can feel it in my body when it comes up. When something is disharmonious, I will get a slight nauseating feeling in my stomach. I can literally feel something is wrong in my gut. Guess what? So can you. You know when something is not a harmonious energy because you have this same skill. Maybe you just haven't been listening, or maybe you just push through anyway, because you think that you have no other options.

But I truly believe that when we feel discord in our body that it is our opportunity to change that energy. First of all, slowing down to notice it is key. Once I do this, I can start a meditation to tune into the energy to determine just what it is. In the past, I historically did not act upon removing this energy soon enough. Instead, I allowed it to overshadow me, until any hints of inner peace vanished completely. Perhaps you can relate. Today when I fell this energy in my stomach, I know that it is time that I take a stand, and make a change. Honestly, there are no other options anymore. I simply refuse to live a life that is not harmonious to my entire being.

Now, does that mean to march in and quit your job today? No, it does not. Sometimes we cannot take action immediately. Often we must plan and navigate a way out. I start with intention and prayer. I thank the Universe for all that I have been given, first. Then, I ask for guidance in how to maneuver through the challenge that I am in, so that I may move out of the discord. All happens when it is supposed to. I have learned to trust and continue to put this energy out daily, because when it does come, it is always beautiful and most welcomed.

OK, but how can this affect our outer world too, Tracey?

I hear you. Here's one example:
The other day I was in my home office and called my insurance company to cancel my policy. I was rerouted three times to erroneous parties - once to Denver, another to Medicare, and a third to a wrong contact within the same company.

Now, when I first called this company, my husband came home and began ruffling through all the file cabinets in my office looking for something. He was mumbling, making a lot of noise, and the energy in the office was completely out of whack. No harmony there. By the second call, I took a deep breath and asked him to go downstairs and have lunch. I rewired my energy mentally, physically and spiritually, and called again. This third time, I was rerouted to wrong person again, but did not let them off the phone. I asked the person to assist me. I told them I was not getting off the phone with them until they helped me get to the right person. She put me on a brief hold, and got me to the right person and I was finally able to cancel my policy.

What happened here? There was disharmony in my outer world, causing major disharmony in my inner world. I asked my husband to remove himself so that I could energetically change my inner world. I took some deep breaths, then I did some energy manipulation techniques that I do (magical stuff, everyone). I said an intention of what I wanted to receive, and I made the final call. Boom. That was that, and end of story.

How many times have you found yourself frustrated on the other end of a phone call, getting nowhere with a bunch of people that "don't know what they're doing?" Uh-huh. And, do you believe that you cannot change that situation? Well, then you, my friend, are the real problem.

Harmony is available to us. It really is a matter of perspective. Sometimes challenges will arise, because that is the nature of life. We will sometimes suffer and sometimes feel low. This is life. The idea is to remember that there are also amazing things in life that occur everyday too. I am sure that if you took a mindful moment that you could find one too. Let's start to harmonize with the energies of Mother Earth this month: body, mind and soul!

* * * * * * * * * * *  

If you feel that I can help you in any way, please reach out!

* Ongoing Yoga Classes
* Private Healing Sessions
* Angel Card & 11:11 Card Readings
* One-on-One Yoga
* Yoga Teacher Training
* On-Line Meditations
Mentoring - in person and online

609-918-0963 (studio land line)
Info@oneyogacenter.net

In Love and Light,
Rev. Tracey L. Ulshafer, Founder ONE Yoga and Wellness Center

Yoga for March 2020

March 2020 Yoga for Harmony

Posture: Adho Mukha Svanasana - Downward Facing Dog




I once heard a yogi say that there are over 100 cues for Downward Facing Dog. WOW! Well, let's keep it simpler than that!

Description: From hands and knees, tuck toes under and press hips up towards the sky. Make sure that your fingers are flat to the earth, spread wide, with knuckles pressing into the floor evenly. Once there, and without moving the hand position, rotate the elbow creases slightly forward so that the shoulder or outer deltoid muscle drops down towards the floor, creating space in the upper back. Elongate the neck and relax the jaw. Bend the knees and lift up on the ball of the foot, taking the heels high. Now, press the chest back firmer towards the thighs, which are engaged, and lift the sitting bones towards the sky. Slowly drop the heels back down towards the floor, and do not worry if they don't touch the earth. Engage the abdominal muscles inward and upward for the lock of the belly (Uddiyana Bandha). 

Drishti: Naval Center or at feet or legs

Variations/ Modifications:
  • Stay on knees
  • Heep knees bent
  • Walk the dog by alternating pressing heels to the floor
  • 3-limbed dog with one leg raised, then the other
  • 3-limbed dog with one leg raised, knee bent, and over to the opposite side, then other side
Notes:
  • Downward Dog is the ultimate "check-in" pose. Not sure what is in harmony? Pop into Downward Dog and breathe. You will immediately feel discord somewhere in your body. Check it out as often as you can and make notes. 
  • Practice variations to see how they change your experience of the pose.
  • Notice the thoughts and emotions that arise when in the pose
  • If you practice at different times of the day, notice how that changes the nature of the pose.
  • Journal daily.

Mudra: Gyan or "Chin" Mudra

One of the most important mudras, this is usually performed for meditation, but can be done at any time. Chin means "consciousness" so this is the mudra to bring peace, calm and harmony to your inner and outer worlds.

Description: Bring the tips of the thumb and index fingers together and form a circle. Keep the remaining three fingers stretched and the palm facing upward.

Benefits:
Promotes proper flow of prana, Cures indigestion, Addresses sleeping disorders, Improves focus, Enhances memory power, Relieves and prevents stress and anger and Promotes sense of balance and harmony

Notes:
  • Perform Atmanjali every day while in Child's Pose, but also when greeting someone and note the response and energy that it generates.
  • It is advised to hold mudras for at least 15 minutes, but up to 45 for desired affect. Try this!
  • Use with meditation.
Breath: Nadi Shodhana: Alternate Nostril

Alternate Nostril breathing is the harmonizing breath. It synchronizes the hemispheres of the brain. There are many variations, but you can practice it by toggling your thumb and pinky fingers on one nostril and then the other (use one hand). Start by closing right nostril and exhale through left nostril, deeply. Then inhale through left, close it and open right nostril, exhale through right. Then inhale through right nostril, close it, and open left, exhale through left. Etc. Keep it going for a few minutes or until you feel yourself beginning to harmonize.

If you need to blow your nose, have tissues handy. If you are very congested, try using neti pot first or wait until congestion is somewhat settled before doing this breathing. If it causes anxiety, stop at any time. You can also try just holding one nostril closed and breathing through that, then after several breaths switching and doing other side. Start slow and build up.

Meditation: Right hand on Heart/Left hand on Solar Plexus

Let's create the harmony by putting right hand, symbolizing masculine energy, on the heart-center, and left hand, symbolizing feminine energy, on the solar plexus. Close your eyes and breath deeply in and out through the nose. Notice your being in the moment. Feel yourself right there - right now. Drop in. Follow the energy without engaging thought or becoming distracted. Be in the moment completely. 

Mantra: OM MANI PADME HUM

The translation of the mantra would be ‘Hail the Jewel in the Lotus’. It is a mantra, used by Tibetan Buddhists to achieve the ultimate state of compassion, also known as Chenrezig.‘Om’ is the primal sound of the universe. It brings you harmony and aligns you with the energy of the cosmos. ‘Ma’ – strips you down from your needs. It takes you away from the world of the physical and it guides you towards the spiritual. ‘Ni’ – Releases you from passion and desire. It leaves you peaceful and content. ‘Pad’ – frees you from ignorance and prejudice. You are left with love and acceptance. ‘Me’ – releases you from possessiveness. You are ready accept the world as it is. ‘Hum’ – liberates you from hatred.

Notes: 
  • Chant three times daily
  • Work up to 108 times daily
  • Chant whenever you need to feel more harmony in your inner and outer worlds
Remember to journal about your experience daily. Notice what changes throughout the month. And ask your yoga teacher for guidance with any of these practices before or after regular yoga classes. To book a private lesson, contact ONE Yoga at Info@OneYogaCenter.net or 609-918-0963.



Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Following the Mystical Path: Rubber Bands

I know what you're thinking, rubber bands, Tracey, isn't that "stretching" it a bit? I get it, but hear me out here.

I was walking my dogs last week and noticed a rubber band on the street. I knew that I should have picked it up, but I didn't. The next day it was still there and I walked by it again. I am not sure why I did not bother to pick it up each time, yet something about it bothered me.

Today, maybe ten days later, I was walking around the block and started to think about the rubber band. As I did, I looked down and saw another rubber band on the ground in the street. It was odd to think of rubber bands and then see one on the street, and yet a different rubber band than before. But, I figured, rubber bands are quite common, right?

So I start walking down the street and I can't get the idea of rubber bands out of my brain. And I look down at a corner and see two more rubber bands together near the curb. Curious, no? So, I pick those up two. And as I am walking around the block on the other side of the street and half way down, still thinking about rubber bands, I see a purple rubber band near someone's driveway. I pick it up and continue walking with my four rubber bands.

I start to wonder what the metaphysical properties of rubber bands are. I consider things like being flexible and ability to bounce back - properties of rubber. As I am contemplating this, I decide to look it up online and find a reference to Angels!

What!? I wonder if my angels have substituted feathers for rubber bands. As I think about this meaning - which the website says is a sign of an angel losing its halo (not sure how I feel about that), I look down and see TWO MORE rubber bands near the curb. This is now about four blocks from the original rubber band. I pick them up, walking now with six rubber bands, and quite curious what this means.

My mom asked me if there is a paper boy riding around on his bike and maybe dropping them. No, mom, paperboys don't ride around on bikes anymore. In fact, very few people get papers anymore. I consider this, but the rubber bands are scattered and in strange places, not near driveways for the most part, and I think they put them in sleeves nowadays anyway, or nothing at all. So, no, I decide to release my brain from thinking about the "realistic" reasons I am seeing rubber bands.

I walk down the street and think I may not see any more because six is a lot of rubber bands. As I contemplate this, I look down near the tree my dog is peeing on and - YES - another rubber band. Now I have seven rubber bands in my pocket, and I am heading near home.

I am thinking that there is no way I will find another rubber band...

...count them: 8. Eight rubber bands on today's walk throughout a six block radius and scattered between streets, curbsides and one driveway.

I follow the mystical signs and I do believe that there is meaning to everything because EVERYTHING IS ENERGY. I find it quite intriguing that I did not find one feather today, something that I do usually find, but rather eight rubber bands. There was virtually no other trash on the walk to speak of, nor anything else out of the ordinary. The neighborhood is relatively quite and respectful. I consider, these were for me, for some reason. But I also realize that the more thought that I put into thinking if I will find a rubber band, the more they just popped up, as if like magic.

Years ago the same manifestation skill came to me with a frog. I sat on my front porch thinking about the pond we used to have and all of the frogs that used to come. I wondered where the frogs went, looked down and at my feet there was a frog. Not kidding. I manifested a frog. Today I manifested rubber bands.

I do believe that we create our own realities, and I do believe that there are signs everywhere. Today it was rubber bands. Tomorrow it might be something of a different nature. Either way, I do find the mystical in this.

Start to pay particular attention to your own thoughts these days. As higher light energy increases, we have the capability to manifest on a whole other level. If your thoughts align with positive intentions, then you are in the right trajectory for Creator-ship. Or, are you caught in worry, doubt and fear? If so, then that is what you are creating more of.

Think about my rubber bands the next time you catch yourself in a loop of wrong thinking and action.  And remember what the rubber band teaches us, to be flexible with our approach to life because we are much bigger and stronger than what we seem.

In Love & Light,
Tracey