By Kate Jarosinska
“Out beyond ideas of wrong doing and right doing there is a field. I'll meet you there.” This is one of Rumi’s, the well known Sufi poets, most famous verses. It is also a perfect segue into the month of February.
For most of us, February is the month of relationships. With Valentine's Day just a few days away, regardless of whether we’re in romantic relationships or not, we are likely examining how important our loved ones are. Most importantly, we may be considering how we relate to them and how we can better relate to them.
Yoga has a simple message and purpose: teaching those that choose to practice, presence. It is presence that awakens us to what is true in our lives. All of us are dealing with a flurry of thoughts. Some of them are subconscious, some of them are wired out of the collective consciousness of news and media and others are just repetitive thought patterns based on our fears and insecurities. Presence allows us the privilege of watching these thoughts and choosing whether or not to follow them. One of my favorite Ernest Holmes, the founder of Science of Mind, quotes is:
“Our thought is operated on a universal Creativity that is infinite in its capacity to accomplish. Thus, in taking thought we do not force anything; we merely decide what thought to follow, knowing that the result is automatic.”
Whoa! I don’t know about you, but this is some serious wisdom. It alludes lightly to the power of our thoughts. This is a message that goes beyond creating good for ourselves in our lives. This message beckons us quietly into the recognition of compassion.
Do we tend to harbor resentment, have trouble forgiving, communicating lovingly, releasing angry thoughts that cause conflicts in our relationships and continually play out old stories that aren’t creating progress? While none of this is wrong and rather a part of life, we have the mere possibility of making a choice to be present with our painful thoughts and thus the power to transcend them by the will of the love that animates us.
It is this presence that makes us aware of the choice to think lovingly and kindly about all of life: “Darling, I am here for you”. These are the most powerful words we can say to our loved ones and one of the greatest and most profound teachings of the Taoist master Thich Nhat Hanh. They are the perfect replacement for words that aren’t fueled by grace and love. In a continual practice of mindfulness and presence we cultivate greater levels of awareness that continually transcend the boundaries of right and wrong. This presence gives us the privilege of not only making decisions from our heart, but also living in our hearts.
It is the practice of presence that is most needed in our day to day lives and is most capable of transforming our society into one of compassion. So, with Valentine's Day around the corner, I invite all readers to step into the power of the heart and consciously cultivate deeper levels of love and understanding in their relationships.
Here’s a beautiful Kundalini yoga meditation to help increase our human capacity to love:
Posture: Sit on your heels with a straight spine. Keep your upper arms parallel to the ground, on the same level as the shoulders. The elbows are bent and the fingertips are nearly touching each other at the center of the chest near the heart center. The hands are flat with the palms facing downward.
Mantra: Humee Hum, Brahm Hum (silently to yourself)
Gaze: The eyes are focused at the tip of the nose.
Meditation: From the starting position, the hands and forearms move out to the sides, palms facing down. Pull the navel point in strongly and lift the solar plexus and diaphragm slightly in a focused motion. As the arms move back in, the navel is released. The navel is pulled in as the arms again move back out to the sides. Continue this movement.
Time: 11 minutes.
About Kate Jarosinska
Kate Jarosinska is a certified Kundalini Yoga teacher, founder of Spiritual Shifts and a blogger from Warsaw, Poland. In her teaching she blends deep pranayama practices with positive messages and guided imagery to facilitate therapeutic impacts on the body and mind. She has been practicing Kundalini Yoga for 8 years.