My Brain surgery Story and The Path to Healing Spiritually – Metta Yoga: Kundalini Yoga & Meditation for Awakening to Your Infinite Self

Its taken me 7 months to complete this post, coming back and forth to it on a numerous of occasions. Wanting it to leave it dead and again bringing it to life. The reason why I keep coming back is that I’ve realized that it will help many people out there today who are reading this and struggling with chronic illness and disease. This post started out as a letter to myself on the journey to healing my mind, body, and soul from fear. This story is my personal testament throughout my struggles with a rare brain disease and late-stage Lyme . I have been waiting for brain surgery now for around a year since I found out I have a rare brain disease called CCM (Cerebral Cavernous Malformation). I hope that my story and experience will help you too. My intention is that you will learn about alternative ways to heal yourself, and I will provide you with the techniques that you easily can apply in your daily life that I have used myself during this difficult period.  When we begin to accept, we can start to allow ourselves to live more happily and change how we relate to the circumstances that go on around and within us. Yoga and meditation work on the energy channels and the nervous system and will leave you with a positive outlook and Let-Go-Let-God attitude which in turn has helped me tremendously through this time. Disclaimer: My techniques have worked for me and how you apply the techniques I provide for you depends on your motivation, your disciplinary skills, if you incorporate patience in your practice and have a set determination about what you want to achieve.  Change only happens to those individuals who allow themselves to overcome, let go and love.  I would never advise you to do something that is beyond your limitations. If it’s painful, simply do not do it. If it’s psychologically painful, please remind yourself that you need to be compassionate towards yourself and maybe come back to the practice when you feel a little bit better. You are your own teacher, always remember that. Please listen to your body, mind, and soul in regards to me sharing my techniques when applying them for yourself in your practice. But bear in mind, results don’t happen overnight. One must work tirelessly towards the goal to achieve results. Take for example a bodybuilder, his strength and endurance didn’t come overnight. He worked for it daily, with time he builds himself up with leaner, stronger muscles. This is the same with the mind and meditation when we want to achieve a goal, we need to have a daily Sadhana  ( a spiritual practice with a goal in mind ) that we can work towards. This daily ritual is the worship of your higher self where you can spend valuable time becoming your very best friend who listens with an intent to increase your own wellbeing. If you are in need of professional help, contact your caregiver first before trying any of these t echniques I provide further below. How to Understand Ourselves Better My intention with writing this is that I can help you overcome, I want to bring a message of hope so that you feel taken care of during this time in your life, whether it’s a breakup and you are dealing with heart-ache or if you are having chronic pain to more serious life-threatening disease, either way, I hope that I can light a spark inside you and show you a path that not necessarily will take away your physical or emotional pain, but if you work persistently towards an inner goal of healing and transformation the outcome will certainly give you a feeling of that even small changes in the way you think can have a huge impact, how you relate to your situation might have taken a different turn as you begin to relate and view things in a new light, you may feel at ease mentally or emotionally and also have better-coping skills to deal with what you are going through. Take this screensaver below and save it to your phone as a wallpaper , have this as a daily reminder that you are not defined as a victim or a disease. You are so much more, you are a beautiful human being worthy of love and light. Start now to take the first step, and I know its hard to even begin to take a leap. But its when we actually are fearful and take a chance we are brave.   I am a Survivor Screensaver by mettayoga.net I truly do understand what you are going through because I’ve been through the worst imaginable pain myself and we will together pave the path to understanding how we can deal with so many things happening all at once. How we relate to what is happening around us is fundamentally based on our convictions and sometimes those convictions are false perceptions that have limited our views. Many people also go through powerlessness and fear when overwhelmed by a condition that limits their life in a way, I want to let you know I’m here for you and that you matter, and we will together pave the path to understanding how we can deal with so many things happening all at once. How we relate and react to what is happening around us is fundamentally based on our convictions and sometimes those convictions are false perceptions that we have accumulated in the past, these perceptions which are based on an empty foundation will ultimately limit your view and be the foundation for how you choose to determine the course of your life. Knowing this alone we can begin to lift the veil and allow the whole truth to enter into our understanding  of the world and what is going on inside of us.  I know that many people are living their lives out of fear, fear of not being heard, being alone, not listening to what your own inner child is saying, not good enough because our parents wanted a different course for us than the life we chose. Afraid of letting go and the list goes on. Does all of this sound familiar to you? Have you asked yourself why your life is this way? If we truly want to be free, why can’t we just dance in the middle of the streets if we feel like it? say what we mean and stand up for what we believe? If we truly love our job, why does it matter what other people think of it? Doesn’t that imply that those people are unhappy with their life? We as humans have always thought that other peoples opinions are directed towards us. But when you think closely about it, really close, it doesn’t have anything to do with you as a person. We continue re-living our own past based on these false convictions which build up over time and this leads us to live not only in fear but a life that is in imprisonment. In life, there is absolutely no way to avoid suffering, but knowing this, that you can change and choose how you relate to the suffering that has the leading role in limiting your wellbeing, will be the very beginning of your own personal freedom. When we begin to believe in our own power to regain a new outlook and work our way through, both with our bodies in asana, and our mind in meditation we find a way that helps us to release the built-up tension that may have had years of accumulation so we can find an inner peace and trust the process of regaining a newfound love for ourselves. The Power of Regaining a New Outlook is in Each of Us We have the power to regain a new outlook , to work with our bodies and mind in healthy ways to release tension, to find calm and love again. The possibilities are limitless because all is within our reach, once we begin to accept. First I want to talk to you about the natural progress of dealing with suffering. Here the process of grief comes in. There is no way around it, we all have to go through it and by recognizing where you are emotionally we can better understand how to relate to all of this that is going on within us. The 5 Stages of Grief When most people face a challenging time many go through what is known as the five stages of Grief and Loss. This applied to me as well and I’ve been through all of these below: Denial and isolation Anger Bargaining Depression Acceptance “Fear is nothing more than a state of mind” – Napoleon Hill The Day I was Diagnosed with a Rare Brain disease (also known as a Cerebral Cavernous Malformation). May 26th, 2018, I got a call from my neurologist that she had found a rare condition in my right temporal lobe, she called it a cavernous malformation. I had literally no idea what she was talking about, what it was or what implications it would have on my life.  Never would I have known how life-altering this new information would become. Literary the beginning of pain beyond my wildest imagination brought forth by my own convictions of dread and fearful emotions, of not having the slightest control of this devastating situation and I felt hopelessness in a way I have never felt before. I immediately reached out for my fiance and I cried. MRI of the Cavernous Malformation in the right temporal lobe This was the day before my Yoga Teacher Graduation Retreat and I wasn’t even shocked, I was utterly paralyzed emotionally. I had worked so much to rid myself of my anxiety and depression diagnosis, that was my main reason why I had started Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training in the first place, to help myself and from there help you. When I heard this devastating news from my neurologist I felt that all my work towards healing was for nothing. I was truly convinced that this was going to be the end of me and that I wasn’t even given the chance of life after I had put so much effort into my yoga practice. I had literally turned my life around, from a life of living in fear and isolation with two burdens I wore as a cope of protection (Anxiety and depression) and I had finally started to realize I had to do something with my life. So I did, and then I felt everything went down the drain. Since it was too overwhelming, I did what I knew best then when I couldn’t deal with this news at that particular moment, I buried it deep down inside of me.  If I buried it I thought to myself, maybe it would go away? Maybe I could hide it from myself   s o even I didn’t notice it? I didn’t know how to deal with a disease like this. I was crushed beyond means. I packed my suitcase and stoved away my emotions that I wasn’t ready to deal with and went to sleep. Next day I was on a plane to an island in Nordland for my graduation. Art has always served to me to be a way of healing. – Art by Tiaga Nihal Kaur WARNING, GRAPHIC STORY! 6 Months Prior to Finding out I had a Rare Brain Disease I was Literally Electrically Charged Almost 6 months prior to when my neurologist gave me the news that I had a rare brain disease I had ongoing shooting pains in my whole body, after researching I understood that the pain I had came from the nerves in my central and peripheral nervous system. Almost immediately after getting a Copper IUD ( Copper is a heavy metal that has metallic properties including the ability to conduct heat and electricity btw ) that means it is a great conductor of electrical currents. I started to have burning sensations in my feet as if someone had poured boiling water on my toes, this progressed all over with electrical currents shooting out my toes, up my calves, all the way up to my arms and out my fingers. To put it shortly, my whole body was affected by this Copper IUD. The pain progressed over months and one day I had  “knives” stabbing me violently inside my brain where my CCM was located, fireworks exploded in my upper abdomen as the epicenter of an atomic bomb going off inside of me, followed by a continuous exploding sensation in all directions simultaneously throughout my whole stomach. I had shooting electrical currents down my spine that felt like I was literally struck by a lightning bolt that spared no vertebrae and nerve to be untouched by excruciating pain that left me paralyzed in pain and uncontrollable sobs. I was in and out of the emergency room, pleading for justice and to make the pain go away. No one ever told me that the copper IUD could have anything to do with my pain. I started researching and I got in touch with a documentarist from Argentina who is making a documentary on women with IUDs and how they affect their bodies. I decided to go to my OB and have it removed because my uterus and vaginal walls were also struck by lightning pain. The pain on the day of extraction was the worst I’ve experienced in my whole life. He pulled so hard it felt like my uterus was going to be in his hands if he pulled any harder. I wrung in the chair with my most private parts showing making me feel so vulnerable, but I had only one goal in mind, and that was to see if this IUD could be the reason why I had all these electrical pains throughout. And I was right, the shooting pains went away by 80% and now I know why . Copper made me electrically charged. Drawing has always been a therapy for me and in this period of my life, I can’t even count how many hours I spent on art therapy to get through my pain. My fiancee has bought many sketchbooks for me throughout this time. Writing, on the other hand, has also helped me tremendously and I kept a journal throughout the whole retreat so I could look back on how I felt during the exercises and what I learned from the meditation practices. All these things mean a lot to me now, because I can look back at it and also share my personal experiences with you. My Sadhana Journal – Joy Journal – A 365-Day Companion. Excerpt from my Joy Journal Diary, May 27th, 2018. The first day of Lovund Island and my Yoga Graduation.  Departure, Lovund Island Dear Joy journal, today is the 27th of May 2018. I’m on a boat headed towards Lovund Island where I will be spending the next eleven days for the final days of Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training. My view now from the second row of seats at the beak of the boat, shows a spectacular view of a mountainscape. This slideshow requires JavaScript. On our way to Lovund Island for our final days of graduation in Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training. At the end of the page in my Joy Journal, there was a quote: “Everything you go through in life is an intricate part of your learning. All situations you encounter will give you the choice to deal with your neutral mind and new ways to reflect and relate to yourself in your developmental process.” May 28th of 2018. In Sound and Mantra class today we got an assignment to find a place in nature and sit in stillness, just listening to the sounds of nature.  I went for a walk with Liz, and we sat down in front of the sea and started the listening expedition. “The waves crashed against the rocks that lay scattered along the shore, that was further down from where we were seated in stillness. I felt as if I was a part of it all.” The Sound Expedition I heard the wind grow larger and stronger with intervals of a couple of smaller brush of air on my face. I heard a bee fly across my face and the residual sound of that same bee flying away further into stillness until I couldn’t hear it any longer. The sounds of seagulls in the heavens above and above my head. I heard the sound of my own rhythmic breath. The waves crashed against the rocks that lay scattered along the shore, that was further down from where we were seated in stillness. I felt as if I was a part of it all. I got an insight from this practice of just listening quietly to the world around and within me. That this moment is filled with so much life. The sounds of stillness are actually quite remarkably present all around you at any given moment. Even though we fail to notice the little things in life, life is always happening in this very moment. It felt like each element had its own purpose and mission to fulfill. The seagull’s intentions were communication with their flock, while the rhythmic wave`s goal was a play of sound dancing with the motion of the wind in the sea. Stillness is the most natural and healing void of present communication in this tapestry of mindfully assorted composers. Moment of stillness in the Sea of Consciousness. – May 28th, 2018. Lovund Island.  Dear Joy journal, today is May 29th,  today our assignment was a 24hour silence. No speaking, no communication at all. We had to call our loved ones and tell them that today was a day of reflection in total silence, and if we needed to say anything, now was the time to say it. I was looking forward to this practice as I was curious to all the doors that would open within me to new worlds of understanding, change, and transformation that I could start to work on. What I learned from my 24-hour silence: The food tasted so much better in silence. You truly notice everything around you, even the small things like the reflection of the outside world on a shiny fork. Your compassion multi folds because you see everything in a new light, you notice what everyone is doing and you have this urge to help everyone. “I couldn’t take my eyes off her, I was enchanted by her aura. Her expression was mild and soft with a noticeable smile running across her face.” During lunch, I sat next to a lovely lady, she is also a student at the retreat. She was incredibly mindful in her presence. She sat down and closed her eyes and she paid her thankfulness to the lunch that she was going to eat.  This ritualistic encounter was truly magical to witness. I wish I had a picture to show you her radiance, but sadly I don’t. Her devotion and awareness of the present moment made her presence even larger than life. I couldn’t take my eyes off her, I was enchanted by her aura. Her expression was mild and soft with a noticeable smile running across her face. The silence was profound, it was filled with so much wisdom and prana. Photo from our Kundalini Yoga Graduation day in Lovund Island, Norway What are Cerebral cavernous malformations (CCMs) Cerebral Cavernous malformations in the brain and in the spinal cord are called cavernous malformations. People with cerebral cavernous malformations may experience serious symptoms such as headaches, seizures, paralysis, hearing or vision deficiencies, and bleeding in the brain (cerebral hemorrhage). People with this condition may experience serious signs and symptoms such as headaches, seizures, paralysis, hearing or vision loss, and bleeding in the brain (cerebral hemorrhage). Severe brain hemorrhages can result in death. Frequency : Cerebral cavernous malformations affect 0.5 percent of the population worldwide. The RollerCoaster of Emotions That Began When I Got Home When I got back home I was adamant that I needed to find everything that could help me understand what my rare condition was, so I googled medical documents, literary papers, scientific findings, and clinical studies, I read about statistics on the prognosis of neurological deficits and death linked with craniotomy, I had to know every single detail and I even researched the safety of titanium screws which is going to be used to hold my skull together after craniotomy.  I talked to other people daily that had undergone brain surgery and what I should ask my neurosurgeon when my time would come. At the same time, I had to deal with nerve pain, electrical pain that shot through my whole peripheral nervous system. It was unbearable at times and I ended up not leaving my doctors office before he had prescribed opiates to me. From my standpoint, as I write, the rollercoaster emotions that I went through I can now accept that phase as bargaining in the 5 Stages of Grief. I didn’t want to acknowledge the emotional overwhelm and I feared to allow myself to feel anything that dealt with thoughts of me dying from a brain aneurysm at any given moment. As I write this now, I’m counting the days until my surgery on January 17th 6.30 AM. (which has now been postponed until February 14th of 2019) and yet again it was postponed until the third of April. Which is three days left until my surgery. I get rather drained talking about this because it brings me back to my relentless struggle to know everything and that I have falsely convinced myself of a terrible lie, “that I had control”. I was far from knowing the truth, I was helpless and I was in great pain and sorrow and I clung to everything that could help me find some answers. “I went FULL-FRONTAL on attacking every angle I knew, I had this conviction that the more I knew the less I would fear the coming invasive surgery that was indefinite to happen. I was literally at war with myself.” I had actually made a choice to live the way I did, constantly reminding me that I was in danger and that I need to hurry to solve this puzzle, which made matters even worse. I continued to race through all information I could find and I went FULL-FRONTAL on attacking every angle I knew, I had this conviction that the more I knew about my disease, the less I would fear the coming invasive surgery that was indefinite to happen. I was literally at war with myself, directing all my energy towards this disease that ended up eating me from the inside out. Living daily in pain both physically and mentally was something I truly believed was deserved. Having my body in pain was something I couldn’t escape, I thought then. But being in mental distress because I couldn’t let go was.  I never imagined in a million years that I could have done this towards my own mind. How could I? Did I love myself? Or did I? Was I truly in compassion with myself? The definite answer was no, I lived with so much fear that I felt it ripping me apart. Living in fear of the unknown. – Art by Tiaga Nihal Kaur.  Meanwhile, I had family matters that weighed me down, and I had my first appointment with my neurosurgeon in the hospital. Looking back I have difficulty remembering the whole meeting as I was too occupied with demanding answers on prognosis , looking for a way way out and alternative treatments. Almost losing my wits end by fighting this condition that I was left to live with. What I do remember is that my neurosurgeon told me that without the brain surgery, I would face a greater risk of brain hemorrhage and as a result end up having neurological deficits or worse, end up dead because I could have a hemorraghe at any time. With craniotomy I could risk getting epilepsy. So it was a dead end street for me. The location of the cerebral cavernous malformation couldn’t be in a better position to surgically remove, he had told me. He said to me that they could remove the right temporal lobe without it even affecting me because the left temporal lobe would substitute for the removed one since I have accumulated enough information in the respective one.  I didn’t feel relieved that day, I felt that we didn’t have time to answer all the questions that I had brought. “I noticed my half-moon “scar” run across my ear and all the way up to the top of my head.” I have cried almost every day for the past months because of my CCM (Cavernous Malformation) in my brain. I try to give my thoughts and spinning mind a break with a little TLC, telling myself that I will be okay and that I will manage to get through this. I was standing in front of the mirror in my bathroom and brushing my teeth before going to bed when I noticed my half-moon “scar” run across my ear and all the way up to the top of my head . I remembered what the neurosurgeon had told me from our meeting about how they would make the incision and I stood there in front of the mirror running my fingers softly over my skin and the imagined scar that I had across my skull with tears streaming down my face. Pain by Tiaga Nihal Kaur This was just the beginning of my fear and how my pain just escalated. A year back around fall I went to the gynecologist to get a copper IUD and instantly within a month I started to notice sensations of burning in my lower extremities, my feet in particular. This was the start of balancing two conditions which I didn’t know much about. Fast forward towards the beginning of 2018 my neuropathic pain had escalated to the degree of me needing opiates, that didn’t work and my shooting pain, electrical stabs along the length of my spine was excruciatingly paralyzing both physically and emotionally, I had multiple breakdowns and sleepovers at the emergency room for months and no one seemed to know what was happening to me, I just felt so alone without any firm answers. Just until one day, a doctor in the emergency room wanted me to see a neurologist regarding peripheral nephropathy. The wait was so long when I was in physical pain that I actually made a pledge with myself that if this pain would debilitate me more than now, I would end it. It was truly that bad. I have never experienced any pain like this in my whole life. I truly didn’t believe it could exist such pain. At one moment I was also a bit relieved because having these neuropathic pains I didn’t have to deal with the fear of brain surgery. I know it sounds very silly. But the pain brought me back to my physical body because of the pain I was in and helped me not to think about the emotional aspect of dealing with fear about going into surgery as much as I would have if I didn’t have these symptoms. The emotions I went through was a long list of, fear, anger, sorrow, suffering, burnout, sadness, weakness and fright. “I remember I couldn’t drink properly and when I smiled my lips and eyes wouldn’t move on the side that was paralyzed. In my teens, my anxiety and depression and eating disorder peaked at its highest.” My neurologist couldn’t provide any more answers to my condition, and he suggested taking some blood samples to exclude infections. The results came back as false positive, IgM positive and IGG Negative on Lyme disease. I started thinking back on my youth and teenage years and I tried to piece the puzzle of having the first symptoms that could link me with being bit by a tick, my bell palsy that I had for several months when I was a teen which left half of my face paralyzed and drooping, I remember I couldn’t drink properly and when I smiled my lips and eyes wouldn’t move on the side that was paralyzed. In my teens, my anxiety and depression and eating disorder peaked at its highest which lead me to put two and two together. I had late stage Lyme. Neuroborreliosis. A Different Approach Paved The Path to Healing Myself The months have passed and I awoke to a new mental approach that had arisen within me over time, I wanted to take it easier. I finally started to allow my physical body to heal through writing, drawing, chanting, doing yoga, reading books ( and relaxing while learning a whole new world of knowledge. ) I had found a way to cope and over this period most of my nerve pain also diminished. I started disciplining my mind on focusing on what feels good instead of fighting off what felt off. Finally, I felt more at ease within me and I could start to deal with my disease in a whole new light. I then had a realization that we are much stronger than we think. I had never in a million years thought that I have to go through what I have. «When we are suffering, we invite another energy from the depths of our consciousness to come up: the energy of mindfulness. Mindfulness has the capacity to embrace our suffering. It says, Hello, my dear pain. This is the practice of recognizing suffering. Hello, my pain. I know you are there, and I will take care of you. You don’t need to be afraid.» – Thich Nhath Hanh Even though my brain surgery is due in less than a couple of days. I have managed to go through the worst of the fears that I have had and also allowed myself to feel loved and blessed with inviting kindness towards myself in all of this. And I entitle myself as strong for that! I work daily on loving myself, letting go, forgiving myself. I do believe acceptance and surrendering is the way to true healing. I was convinced that this disease was a threat that I had to fight it my bare bloody knuckles until I had got well again, instead, it only made me sicker than I had been. I let this disease take full control of my life. But now is the time to take my life back. You are stronger than you might think. Just like the leaves of a tree will sway in the wind, you too will be influenced by the changing nature of things. But remember that the tree also has deep roots, and you need to have faith in yourself to overcome whatever you need to find your own balance. Keep yourself rooted. – Design by Tiaga Nihal Kaur  “My fear kept telling me that I couldn’t take it easy, I was literally trying to beat time. Even though I had feelings of powerlessness and weakness,  I didn’t allow myself to have these feelings.” How We Relate to Our Life can be Life-Changing We can all learn so much from our own situations and recognize how we relate to our own minds. Particularly our thoughts and how they regulate how the emotions will demonstrate. How we relate to suffering whether it’s emotional or physical is alpha and omega in the end results. I can’t go back now and alter the very actions of how I related to my own life, but you can and I will continue to shed light on this to share the message that we are our own creators of how we feel and think. How we feel and how we direct this focused energy will define if we are happy or less prone to positive thinking. Having support is very important so that you can release and communicate whatever is on your mind, having a mindful listener, a mother, a partner or a professional will be very helpful to overcome and work through some issues that leave you feeling depleted. I’m very thankful that my fiancee has stood by me all the way through and beyond , telling me as it is, that I  needed to let go and to take care of myself. I never listened to him at that time because I had already made up my mind then, to focus only on the things that in the end gave me the feeling of fear. Fear is such destructive energy and it will limit your wellbeing in life. My fear kept telling me that I couldn’t take it easy, I was literally trying to beat time. Even though I had feelings of powerlessness and weakness,  I didn’t allow myself to have these feelings pass through me. I was too scared to fall further down if I let everything just go.  I was constantly wearing my boxing glove and I would never in a million years take off my shield of “protection”.  YES! That’s how I convinced myself that I was actually fighting to stay alive, to survive and to overcome. “I had lived in so much fear of dying and living in pain and constantly trying to fight, that I had momentarily forgotten to love myself.” Now was the right time to acknowledge what I had done to myself over the last year. I had lived in so much fear of dying and living in pain and constantly trying to fight, that I had momentarily forgotten to love myself. I truly didn’t see it at the time that I was going down a downward spiral and that I was making myself sicker through the unconscious choices that I had made then. I was too much occupied to fight than to love and heal. I was reminded by something that I had read in Thich Nhat Hanh’s book on his Buddhist views on how to deal with disease and sorrow. That we can face ourselves and our suffering with kindness instead of constantly evading that love resides there with us. We just have to embrace it. Embrace your suffering and let it reveal to you the way to peace ~ Thich Nhat Hanh. Design by Tiaga Nihal Kaur. How I changed my Views Towards Love, Forgiveness, and Healing. I love to read and it has been my go-to-self-help-medicine when I need to expand my views or help to ease my suffering and push me in a more healing direction. I started reading Bhagavad Gita (which literally means the song of God, it is a Hindu Scripture with 700 verses) at a time when I had begun to realize I wanted to allow myself to be loved, feel love and share love instead of denying myself of my true existence. I enjoyed learning more about spirituality and delving deeper into the sea of self-realization. In the book, I read this paragraph which made me remember my own meditations on my true self. “When at the time of samadhi we lose our “I,” our separate ego, that is death. Who is there to die? and with the elimination of the little finite ‘I,’ the Immortal ‘I,’ which is the Lord of Love, is revealed in our consciousness.” You are not your skin.  You are not your body. You are a soul. You are a cell in the body of the Divine. You are the magnificent product of Divine Creation. You are a moment of inspiration made manifest in a human body.  – Art by Tiaga Nihal Kaur मात्रास्पर्शास्तु कौन्तेय शीतोष्णसुखदःखदाः । ु आगमापायिनोऽनित्यास्तांस्तितिक्षस्व भारत ॥ २-१४॥ When the senses contact sense objects, we experience cold or heat, pleasure or pain. These are fleeting; they come and go. Bear them patiently, Arjuna. – Bhagavad Gita Finding acceptance in the Unknown I want to accept the changes that I go through in life. It’s inevitable, we all have to go through suffering during our lifespan and absolutely no-one has the privilege to stay the same. Change is inevitable. A change will come either we like it or not. We all go through phases of learning so we can live more happily and connected to the inner-vision that will direct us to live with a divine directive. After finishing Bhagavad Gita I had a new awakening within me which reminded me of all meditations that have done and how I had connected to everything around me. How my awareness of my physical body had shifted into the larger consciousness where I was no longer separate. I remember tears running down my smiling lips as I was absorbing the whole beauty of love. There was only love in its widest sense, no words could ever describe the feeling of being love, having the awareness of love and knowing how we all are so intricately connected to that one source of divine light. We are all interwoven. Art by Tiaga Nihal Kaur I am lucky to have this reminder of self-realization because I can now be more awake in a more loving way. So how has this new insight changed me? I am more aware and mindful when I go through stressful reactions. F.example if I’m in pain I try to shift how I impulsively relate to my thoughts about that pain. I try to cultivate kind thoughts towards myself and do breath-work so that I can stay with the now instead of losing the focus and go down a trail of thoughts that I used to have. Knowing that I shouldn’t judge or criticize and just be with my breath and my pain has made a lot of difference. My time spent with my fiancee has a deeper sense of love that is much more valuing and open than it has ever been before. I allow myself to be more courageous when we talk through sore subjects since I used to have a difficult time talking about things like that in the past. I enjoy our morning talks over coffee. This is a very cozy moment we both enjoy.  I have this feeling that I see the bigger picture, that life is fleeting and ever-changing and that makes life so special. Did You Know That There is a Hug Meditation? Being with my love, holding him close to my chest and truly seeing beyond the physical, but being with him in this present moment, breathing in and out together, that makes our love a devotional practice. Knowing that I can have a bleed at any moment I do cherish my seconds even more with him. Holding him close to me I sometimes think of a Buddhist hug meditation which I learned by Zen Buddhist master Thich Nhat Hanh: “When we hug, our hearts connect and we know that we are not separate beings.” When we hug, our hearts connect and we know that we are not separate beings. Hugging with mindfulness and concentration can bring reconciliation, healing, understanding, and much happiness. The practice of mindful hugging has helped so many to reconcile with each other- fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, friends and friends, and so many others. We may practice hugging meditation with a friend, our daughter, our father, our partner or even with a tree. To practice, we first bow and recognize the presence of each other. Then we can enjoy three deep conscious breaths to bring ourselves fully there. We then may open your arms and begin hugging. Holding each other for three in-and-out breaths. With the first breath, we are aware that we are present in this very moment and we are happy. With the second breath, we are aware that the other is present in this moment and we are happy as well. With the third breath, we are aware that we are here together, right now on this earth, and we feel deep gratitude and happiness for our togetherness. We then may release the other person and bow to each other to show our thanks. When we hug in such a way, the other person becomes real and alive. We do not need to wait until one of us is ready to depart for a trip, we may hug right now and receive the warmth and stability of our friend in the present moment. Hugging can be a deep practice of reconciliation. During the silent hugging, the message can come out very clear: “Darling, you are precious to me. I am sorry I have not been mindful and considerate. I have made mistakes. Allow me to begin anew. I Promise.” Embracing Change Within In this past year an a half I have learned a lot about myself as a person and how I relate to my own thoughts. Upon this shift that I had within when I started to really embrace the change from within, it has made me a lot happier and content. Maybe the feeling of peace of mind would be more appropriate to add also. I value the gift of learning new things , especially when it helps us to see things from new perspectives.  Having come to terms that I am what I am, I am continuously adapting my thoughts to new ways of relating, so that I can better myself and how I end up perceiving things in the right light. All of us has our unique starting point and we go through life viewing and experiencing our external world through what our mind’s eye is capable of dealing with. Failure and criticism isn’t a word in my vocabulary anymore, but learning is. We learn through going through difficulties and through challenges overcome that we are in power, we master it and we transform. We are always changing, but having that said I still go through times of inner-reflection when I face something that I’m not used to, but having a kind and loving mind that tells me to allow the seed of goodness grow within me will help me in how I relate to the unfamiliar, I help myself to ease my suffering of not knowing always what to do with kindness. Sometimes kindness can help you more than you have ever known.  I bow in my total humility to my higher self, I’m grateful and ever learning of planting seeds of kindness in me. The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.             – Art by Tiaga Nihal Kaur.  “I wanted a deeper sense of love for myself , a kind of love that could only grow stronger from the trauma that I went through. I made a promise to myself that I will be strong no matter the outcome.” My fear of death is less terrifying now and I have taken more time to relax and to enjoy my time with doing things that serve and nourishes my soul. Making affirmative statements towards myself like; I don’t want to be afraid anymore. I want to let go and release everything that does not serve me has helped me tremendously. I started to practice EFT (Emotional Tapping Freedom) to release and alter my own frequency so I can live without having whats not needed anymore. This new awakening has made me shift from negative to positive over a long period while dealing with my diseases. Realizing that I have so much more to offer myself than living in fear all the time, I started to make a firm intention that I was deserving of happiness and that I was the only one that could make that first step. So I did, knowing that I needed to collect memories that were joyful and filled with joy. I wanted a deeper sense of love for myself , a kind of love that could only grow stronger from the trauma that I went through. I made a promise to myself that I will be strong no matter the outcome. “Once we take that first step of renunciation, our practice nourishes us and sustains as we are reborn.” – Rolf Gates Cleanse and Wash Away Your Burdens Here is a meditation that I named  “Wash Away Your Burdens Meditation” which I made 3 days before I met with my neurosurgeon last year to talk about what treatments he had decided for me. This water meditation will leave you feeling energized and full of awareness and hopefully showered with love. As I was sitting outside writing in my Joy Journal I listened to the droplets of rain drumming on a can in my garden. When I listened to the rain I imagined all my troubles wash away. As I was stepping into the biggest shower God had created, a place for me to heal my emotions. There is such a power to the rain, it comes first like a gentle shower only to transcend into a full waterfall that cleanses you. Imagine walking in the rainforest all by yourself and go on a great adventure deep into the forest. You walk barefoot and you can feel the damp moist earth beneath your soles. The grass is  soft beneath the soles of your feet and you become aware of the smile on your face as you continue to marinade in the sounds of nature. Stepping deeper into the wild forest you hear the hummingbirds, the rattle of the thousands of leaves that lay carpeted over your head, the gentle breeze that kindly hugs your cheeks and gives you a gentle reminder that you are exactly where you need to be. Then in the midst of the greenery, you see an opening, you step willingly and openly towards it and suddenly you notice the most beautiful lagoon you have ever seen. There is a sense of belonging, you feel yourself getting drawn towards this magnificent place, the lagoon is an untouched beauty that’s only for you. You walk closer towards it in utter mezmeration and your eyes are now wide open, wanting to absorb all of the lush nature that resides within your gaze. You step towards the water and can see right down to the very bottom, it’s almost translucent. There are colorful fishes swimming around and you catch yourself thinking that you have never seen such species in your whole life. Everything about this place seems to be untouched, the most perfect spot you have been in your whole life and it’s all yours to enjoy. On your left side, you can see a waterfall, the cascade crashes down to the surrounding water as a personification of nature`s force. You immediately feel a rush of power flooding through your veins as you walk towards the essence of life streaming into this sacred sanctuary which is yours for all eternity. You stand with your eyes closed for a moment, and interconnect with this natural force of nature and realize that you and the waterfall were never separated, you have found your way back home. You have the power to heal yourself at any given time, this waterfall meditation is here to cleanse you so that you can wash away anything that might be troubling you. Remember Who You Truly are, Serving the Soul`s Purpose A spiritual practice is one that brings us full circle, not to a new self but, rather, back to the essence of our true selves. Yoga is the practice of celebrating what is. At the end of the hero’s journey, he finds that he did not need to go anywhere, that all he sought was inside him all along. – Meditations from the Mat by Rolf Gates You are being brought back to your own remembrance, that you are light and love, and that everything is okay. How can a soul die when energy itself in the law of conservation of energy never was born or can be extinguished. We have always been eternal light. There is absolutely nothing to fear within this all-knowing expansion. What we have always known will be confirmed thousandfolds when the time is right for you. How you have made your choices in life, how you chose to spend your life directed by how you related to things will be shown to you. It’s like the veil of illusion from this world has lifted itself and you are seeing the true light of it all. How the light illuminates all the experiences which you have had throughout the whole span of your life. They are cleared by this light, knowing that you have the inner-light to choose to love, to change and be liberated, feel liberated and live liberated day after day. Because that is why we are solely here for, to love and to enjoy by doing what we love the most.  We can always awaken again to our old remembrance of our soul’s purpose when we meditate on the light that will shine on our path and that will bring new awakened light within you and help direct you towards what needs to be done. Inter-connected by Tiaga Nihal Kaur Living a life of connection, be ing interconnected with the whole, meaning the flora and fauna, the mother earth through compassionate understanding that we were never separate but ONE living organism, always viewing other people with the same compassion as you would for yourself, that is true liberation. Treating each sentient being with love and the freedom to live to meet their full potential. We all share a purpose and that purpose is to be responsible to shine our light and be loving in every encounter here on earth and beyond.  I read the book Dying to be me by Anita Moorjani who healed herself from cancer, and the book gave me that remembrance which I was talking about above, it made me think about my own liberation and giving myself the permission to love again freely without fear and that I am the only one responsible for healing my own life. Everything starts with believing in yourself to the degree that you follow your own truth even though that may differ from what those people close to you may believe is better for you.  What if you woke up to a new world view tomorrow, so vivid and clear that you could walk through the door and leave all your fears, troubles and suffering behind? How freely you would roam with love knowing all is inter-connected. I have endless love for all because everything I see and experience resides within me. We are all connected to the divine consciousness all of us, there is no difference between you and me as a soul. We travel through life with this heavy baggage of convictions of being separated. False convictions that convince you that you need to become better, be less than, be more of and strive to become someone who you know you are not. This is a course through life which most of us deal with, basically living out someone else’s wishes and hopes for us and disregarding the inner child’s dreams for our own lives. We don’t recognize what we want until we are in silence with our soul. When you allow silence to come into your life all that is within will come shining through if you allow it lovingly. So many people are living in fear and resentment of not being good enough, blaming their parents or other people that have made them feel bad about not being accepted. Or maybe you are even blaming yourself and punishing you for not being the one you dreamt of. I feel for you, I was there myself and I needed to tell m yself that blaming myself for it didn’t make it any better,   only love does. Remember that next time you go down the path on blaming others for what they have done unto you and ask yourself this question. “ Can I be responsible for the actions of others? ” or “Can I only be responsible for giving myself all the blessings I need in life?”  Knowing that this shift in thought can help you accept this path to healing as a second chance to love and begin a new life. Correcting the Imbalances of the World Living in this world today we have lost all bonds to what it is to be united and work together for the good of others. We hear daily news on racist violence, modern slavery, school shootings, corrupt governments and suicides on the rise. People have lost their ways to love and to heal. I have come to an understanding that the world is not either good nor evil, what I have realized is that the people of this world continue to make bad choices based on imbalances they have within and that imbalance has been born from unfulfilled desires to belong. To belong is the feeling of being at ease, to be at home, to feel secure and to be nurtured and accepted.  Being loved is to belong to a community and have a feeling that we are all connected  The world needs to be healed and to find their path and turn away from their own inner darkness, towards the light. “We are far now from home, and weary from our travels. The sun is setting and there is no destination in sight. Yoga is a lamp lit in the window of our home, dimly glimpsed across the spiritual wilderness in which we wander. At a time when we could not feel further from our home, yoga reminds us that we are already there, that we need simply awaken from our dream of separation, our dream of imperfection.” – Meditations from the Mat by Rolf Gates Adi Shakti Meditation, and My Experience of Heaven on Earth One of my favorite vocalists in Kundalini Yoga is Niranjan Kaur, her angelic voice brings me to an ethereal place which I can say is one of the closest ways I have been to experiencing heaven on earth. She chants and sings the mantra “Adi Shakti Namo Namo ” we tap into the frequency of the Divine Mother (the Goddess Shakti) and by chanting this mantra it eliminates all fears and fulfills your desires. It will help you to be free you of the insecurities which block freedom of action. By meditating on it one can obtain a deeper understanding of the constant interplay between the manifest and the unmanifest qualities of the cosmos and consciousness. Some quotes Yogi Bhajan gave on this mantra specifically for women: “Merge in the Maha Shakti. This is enough to take away your misfortune. This will carve out of you a woman. A woman needs her own Shakti, not anybody else will do it. When a woman chants the Kundalini Bhakti mantra, God clears the way. This is not a religion, it is a reality. A woman is not born to suffer, and a woman needs her own power.” Instructions on the Adi Shakti Meditation: Sit in easy pose or in a chair with a straight spine. Place your hands in front of the heart center with the arms parallel to the floor. Both palms face down with the left palm 2-3 inches above the right hand. Focus your eyes open or closed as you wish. Chant the mantra “Adi Shakti”. Chant as long as you like. We love 11 minutes or more. The Complete Mantra: Adi Shakti Adi Shakti Adi Shakti Namo Namo Sarab Shakti Sarab Shakti Sarab Shakti Namo Namo Pritham Bhagvati Pritham Bhagvati Pritham Bhagvati Namo Namo Kundalini Mata Shakti Mata Shakti Namo Namo I bow to the Primal Power. I bow to the all-Encompassing Power and Energy. I bow to that through which God creates. I bow to the creative power of the kundalini, the Divine Mother Power. “This mantra invokes the Creative Goddess that is in each of us and that is the power of creative manifestation throughout the Universe. As you open your self to this constant creative becoming and movement of the Universe, you move naturally to drop insecurity, and move beyond blocks that come from a more limited perspective. In this meditation you sit with and embody the primal, constant creative power of the Universe.” ~ Gurucharan Singh Time: 11 minutes. I am Arriving In This Moment I know who I am, finally, I have yet again awakened to my true self. I was living as a shadow of myself. I know now what the true path in life is, to live with love, to be loved and share the light that is within all of us. Knowing my own true light expands my love  so that I can focus my awareness of living life with grace and humility. There is no more limitations, I am boundless light of love. There is no time, there is no fear or attachments that follow one’s awareness. I am free, I am LOVE! Connection to the Undying Soul What I have realized through my Kundalini Yoga Teacher training when it comes to my meditation practices is that I’m in full acceptance, there is just this flowing awareness of what is happening right now, bathing in full awareness and love. I’m happily accepting that this is it and that is the loveliest of feelings. During meditation before I was very scared, especially during savasana (corpse pose) when we were laying on our yoga mats. My mind was too occupied with all other students laying on the mat, I couldn’t relax my body and I remember I felt tense, especially my neck since my thoughts were literally going like a fret-train on its tracks and it didn’t stop at any moment. I remember thinking about how people viewed me laying there , that I didn’t relax enough and that I was scared that people would see that I wasn’t good enough to be there sharing this sacred science with them. This was utter nonsense and now I can recognize that those feelings limited me of being who I was, a free soul living a physical life here on earth. Now in retrospect, I can see that all of these unhealthy thought patterns were a part of my process of learning to let go so I could surrender to me. Over the years I found myself meditating without me even thinking about the person next to me, other than the awareness of that all our breaths had joined in as a synchronized unity. We had become ONENESS in PRANA and breath . I enjoy being in meditation because here I can rest, I can heal and I can tap into that frequency which shines the light on whatever I need to make more clear in my life. I am so lucky to have this experience and I humbly bow to my teachers for illuminating this path to me. It is such a loving feeling for me that I can pass it on to YOU who are reading these lines.  I truly have one dedication in life and that is to be the light, spread the light so that YOU one day can also embrace this science of love that has changed my life forever. To be a teacher for me means to be in service. I have a sacred obligation to pass on what I know through my learning here on earth so that you can awaken within your own light that has always been eternal love. Yoga is a preparation to unite with the undying and infinite space that is within us. Breathwork and How to use Pranayama in Your Daily Life I try to stay focused and mindful throughout the day, and I work on recognizing when I have lost connection and find myself in forgetfulness. When I find myself lost in thoughts or doing some activity which I’m not paying attention to because my mind is elsewhere, I take a deep breath and stay with my breathing which in turns takes me back to mindfulness. It’s important to be in touch and to tune in to your soul so that you can live a life of purpose and enjoy your moments . If we are caught in thought at the moment you are having a conversation with your loved ones or your friends we are not really there, because we aren’t paying attention to the present moment. We need to learn to be in-tune inwards so we can enjoy the external world that happens around us more mindfully. Let’s say you catch yourself not paying attention, take that time to reflect and ask yourself; “ Am I present right now?”  Take a deep breath all the way down to your belly button. And ask yourself; “Am I really listening without judgment, criticism or am I having an internal conversation?” Try to still your mind and direct your awareness on your breath to be present in the conversation with your partner. Now its time to recognize that your mind has wandered, and with discipline and observance make that your initiation to embark a new adventure, the adventure that awaits your own unfolding. “Breathe in the present moment.” Now breathe into the moment, breathe in the present moment with a full deep breath all the way down to your stomach and feel your stomach expand like a big balloon forming with your inhale. Pause and sense the vast cosmos, infinity is in that pause. Then exhale all the way out, your stomach deflating, feel that you activate the navel center (right below your navel) so that you can push more air out, air is removed from your lungs, air that passes through your trachea (windpipe) and out through your nose. Nadi Shodana Pranayam – See full instructions here What benefits does breathing have? Emotionally?  People have different breathing patterns that follow a pattern to what they have been through in their life. Long deep breathing speeds up the emotional healing processes and aids to break unconscious habit patterns and addictions.  Physically? Breathing provides waste removal and provides oxygen for all the cells throughout the body. Breathing deeply helps the blood to get rid of toxins and carbon dioxide to make our blood more alkaline, we renew our blood by breathing. Breathing also helps our lymphatic system to release toxins much more easily while it also moves our diaphragm which helps to stimulate glandular release. Controlling the breathing will alter the heart rate. Breathing creates a rhythmic movement of the spine and aids to pump cerebrospinal fluid. Brainwaves are altered by controlling the breath when using specific yogic techniques. Deep long breaths also help with releasing muscular tension within the intercostal muscles. Long deep breathing balances the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous system, creating a long deep and lasting relaxation. Deep breaths stimulate the production of chemicals in the brain to work against depression. Breathing breath of fire stimulates the nervous system to handle stress. A post shared by Mettā Yoga 🧘🏻‍♀️Lovingkindness (@mettayoganet) on Oct 8, 2018 at 7:33am PDT Energetically? When we breathe deeply with long breaths it helps to release blockages to the flow of energy, in the meridians. It’s said in the yogic text that we have 72000 thousand energy channels distributed throughout our body. Breathing helps to balance stagnation within our respective chakras (energetic channels) that need help to circulate and accelerate. The air we inhale travels down our central energy channel called shusmana, and when we exhale the air meets at the navel center from where it helps to address our chakras to do their work. We are healing ourselves. I healed myself of not having the courage to talk in public, I was terrified to speak in large groups or to even voice my opinions. Now I speak freely and I have a healthily and balanced throat chakra (Vishudda chakra) that aids me to be in truth, speak my truth and to be truthful to myself which has opened new doors that I can walk through life with grace in speech and share my message of what I believe and own it. Healing through Meditation by Tiaga Nihal Kaur Tools to Bring Yourself Back Home to Your True Reality Make your own healing sanctuary in your home or outside in nature (nature is more preferred as you are more in touch with the whole) but lets say you have a spare room, make that room filled with as much YOU as you can, scented candles, incense, music playing or none if that helps you more, gather blankets and pillows and make sure the room is well ventilated so that you can breathe in fresh air. It is not necessary to have a lot of things, you and nature are just fine also and not much is needed to meditate. Sit down on your yoga mat in lotus pose or easy pose, if you find it difficult to be seated comfortably in this position just use a chair (whatever you find the most pleasing). Now relax your whole body and tune into yourself and your intentions.  You can, for example, say to yourself: “right now I need this space within me to totally relax my body and mind or that you want to connect to yourself on a more spiritual level.” The intention is whatever you want, just make sure that you are marking that as the first thing you do. Now, let’s begin. Lay down on your yoga mat with your feet a little separated from each other, hip-width apart and your hands along your waist, not too much from the body. Find a position which is relaxing for you so that you can fully come into this calming pose. Now I’m going to tell you how to follow your breath and how it passes through your body on your inhale and all the way out. Breathe in through your nose and feel how the air meets at the back of the throat, goes down the trachea and inside your lungs and all the little alveoli inside your lungs, the breath continues further down into your stomach and sense how the body moves in waves when you inhale this far down into your stomach. Breathe out and empty your stomach, breathe out with your navel center to get extra air out. Try to breathe in the same mathematical formula: 4:4, 5:5, 6:6, etc (4 inhales and 4 exhales). Try this for 11 minutes a day, and if that is to long start with just 3 minutes and build up your practice to get to 11 minutes a day for as long as you like. In Yoga, we say that we are given a set of breaths for life. Therefore we must breathe long and deep to have more lifeforce. Sing From Your Heart & Boosts Your Immune system right NOW When I start chanting mantras my mood lifts to a higher frequency of bliss and joy.  I feel balanced. I become happier, feel lighter in my body, my emotions and thoughts shift, my tensions melt away and I smile. Mantras will help to balance your energy channels, thoughts will cease and the only moment available will be this present one in a continuous cycle of nows. It feels fantastic to partake in the present with your own voice and channel all your hearts desire to the vibratory essence that you are.  If you want to shift your energy, focus on chanting!  It will immediately lift you to higher realms of connectedness. I know what you are thinking; “But I can`t sing, my voice is awful, I only sing in the shower or in the car where no one hears me”. Well let me tell you one thing, I can’t sing either, but I love to sing and it makes me feel so good. It balances my nervous system and I enjoy it. Isn’t that enough? We criticize ourselves too much, when will you allow yourself to just be you? Be free? The time is right now. So come on, sing and chant and let the cosmos flow through you. If you master the sound current, you master the sound, that is, you master God – Yogi Bhajan A Mantra is the use of sound to affect consciousness; Mantra: Man (mind) Trang (wave) = Mind-wave. The name of the mantra suggests the power to change your mind waves. The use of mantra is based on the knowledge that sound, as an energy form, can create a deep influence over the human chakras and soul. Everything in this world, down to the subatomic level, is in constant motion, vibrating. The denser a material, the more slowly it moves, often the vibration is so slow or so fast that we can’t notice it with our direct senses. This vibration is pure energy. Download your free Mantra ToolKit here  below and discover how you too can vibrate the cosmos with chanting. Mantra ToolKit – Click Photo to Download There is a vibratory frequency that corresponds to everything in the Universe.  Happiness or sorrow, joy or regret are vibratory frequencies in the mind. When we chant a mantra we are choosing to invoke the positive power contained in those particular syllables. Whether it’s for prosperity, peace of mind, increasing intuition, or any other possible benefits inherent in mantras, simply by chanting them we are setting vibrations into motion that shall have an effect. It doesn’t actually matter if we understand the meaning of the sounds or not. A post shared by Mettā Yoga 🧘🏻‍♀️Lovingkindness (@mettayoganet) on Jun 24, 2018 at 2:51pm PDT Chanting and singing mantras benefit you on multiple levels. Proper pronunciation helps to stimulate different points of the body with the tongue and upper palate of your mouth. Singing, especially in groups, helps to uplift and inspire. Words that we speak are powerful because of the way they make us feel and their resonance that vibrates throughout the cavities of the body. Not only does it feel good to chant but chanting helps our throat chakra to open up, the throat chakra (vishuddha) represents the ability to be truthful and live in accordance with the truth you have. Working with these energy channels helps us to direct our focus on having mindful communication , self-expression, being a better listener, etc. You would know if you have an imbalance in this pathway if you are shy, have a weak voice, have a fear of speaking, unable to listen, lie, thyroid problems, hearing problems or throat problems. The earliest mantras were composed in Vedic Sanskrit by Hindus in India, and are at least 3000 years old. A mantra meditation helps to induce an altered state of consciousness and it will also help our brains to grow new neural pathways (neurogenesis) and also an effective treatment for anxiety without all the side effects you get from prescription medications. “Mantras are not small things, mantras have power. They are the mind vibration in relation to the Cosmos. The science of mantra is based on the knowledge that a sound is a form of energy having structure, power, and a definite predictable effect on the chakras and the human psyche.”  ~ Yogi Bhajan If you have come this far and read the whole post, I want to give my thanks to you! I have spent months on this post to show you the process I have gone through mentally, emotionally and spiritually. I hope that my techniques have provided some help for you in your life and keep on being a seed that will grow with you throughout your life. May you be blessed,  May you be loved,  May you be at ease May you have peace of mind May you be free from suffering.  With loving kindness, Tiaga Nihal Kaur. Namaste ॐ Thank you for reading!

This Kundalini Yoga Sequence Will Make Conceiving a Little Easier

Conceiving a child is a miracle. This Kundalini practice rebalances the second chakra for the possibility of conception.

Learn how this Kundalini practice rebalances the second chakra for the possibility of conception.

Conceiving a child is a miracle. Sometimes it can take time and nurturing for pregnancy to occur. Kundalini Yoga is a wonderful tool for conscious conception for both men and women. It integrates the spiritual, energetic, conscious, and unconscious aspects of a person, as well as strengthens the nervous system, balances the hormonal system, and energizes the muscles, organs, and joints of the physical body.

While all of the chakras come into play, it is essential to have a balanced second chakra in order for healthy conception to happen. Many men and women feel as though they are running on adrenaline, weakening their sexuality, sensuality, sensitivity, and emotional well-being. They lose touch with the natural balance that comes from aligning with the creative embrace of the universe.

See also A Sequence to Help You Feel Strong and Secure

Here are four Kundalini Yoga practices that help rebalance the second chakra so that creative expression and our natural, robust fertility are aligned with the ripe possibility of conception. These exercises work for both men and women, helping them to open, allow, and drop their resistance to the natural creativity of the universe flowing through them.

About the Author

Teacher and model Karena Virginia is a Kundalini Yoga teacher based near New York City. She is the coauthor of Essential Kundalini Yoga. Learn more at . 

STUDY WITH KARENA

Join Karena for a unique, six-week online course on the incredibly powerful practices that Kundalini Yoga has to offer. Learn more at yogajournal.com/kundalini101.

Excerpted from Essential Kundalini Yoga: An Invitation to Radiant Health, Unconditional Love, and the Awakening of Your Energetic Potential, by Karena Virginia and Dharm Khalsa. Sounds True, February 2017. Reprinted with permission.

How to Use Kundalini Yoga to Set Intentions for the New Year – Organic Authority

As 2018 comes to a close, we love to reflect on all the growth we made over the year and look toward a more energetic and vibrant year ahead. We’re excited to share more about our process and inspiration for creating intentions to set you up for an epic, elevated 2019! A new year gives us the opportunity to continue to help bring a community together and elevate the vibration of the planet. It starts with each of our commitments + intentions for the year!

Around this time, we love to create space to really look at what we want the next year to look and FEEL like – clarity is such an important part of manifesting and Kundalini yoga is our manifesting superpower! After connecting to our breath with this powerful practice of yoga and meditation we can better align with our truth and set smart + aligned intentions to start the year off more connected and abundant than the last.

Why Kundalini?

Kundalini Yoga allows you to tap into a meditative mind. With this mind, you can be intuitive and proactive and receive guidance from your higher self, and your guides and angels. You are able to pick up on energetic signs and look at the bigger picture of your life and the circumstances you face. In this frame of mind, you can better pick up on the flow and create “commitments” or “intentions” that align with your highest path.

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When we set “resolutions” we often aren’t aligning with our highest, elevated selves but our ego or what society tells us we should aspire for. We’re asking to heal surface level issues whether that’s our fitness, career or relationship. We like to dig deeper and get to the root of what our true self wants for our deepest experience of life and happiness. Kundalini Yoga helps us tap into our own truth so we can commit to new practices or release anything that no longer serves us in the new year. Mantras, breath-work, Kriyas (sets of exercises) and meditation help us heal and connect to higher frequencies, our true selves and most importantly – our intuition.

Kundalini Yoga is the yoga of awareness and it works fast to help you relax and be clear with your intentions in the best way!

Try the following Kundalini meditation – Beaming and Creating the Future – it’s a perfect practice to align your energy to set the highest intentions for 2019.

The best way to practice this is on an empty stomach first thing in the morning for this specific meditation.

Sit in Easy Pose. Stretch the spine up and become very still. Close your eyes.

Relax your hands Gyan Mudra (thumb and index finger touching) on the knees.

Part One

Inhale in a single, deep, long sip through a rounded mouth. Close the mouth and exhale through the nose, slowly and completely. Continue this for 7-15 minutes.

Part Two

Inhale and hold the breath comfortably. As you hold the breath in, meditate on zero. Think in this way: “All is zero; I am zero; each thought is zero; my pain is zero; that problem is zero; that illness is zero.”

Meditate on all negative, emotional, mental and physical conditions and situations that cross your mind – every thought. As each thought crosses the mind, bring it to zero—a single point of light; small, insignificant non-existence.

Exhale and repeat. Breathe in a comfortable rhythm. Continue this for 7-11 minutes.

Part Three

Think of the quality or condition you most desire for complete happiness and growth. Summarize it in a single word like “wealth,” “health, “relationship,” “guidance,” “knowledge,” “love.” Lock on that word and thought. Visualize facets of it. Inhale and hold the breath as you beam the thought in a continuous stream. Lock onto it. Relax the breath as needed. Continue for 5-15 minutes.

To End: Inhale and move the shoulders, arms and spine. Then stretch the arms up, spread the fingers wide, and breathe deeply a few times.

This meditation will clear the mind so you’ll be able to focus ahead to the future and your relationship with yourself and the world. In this state of mind, you’ll be able to connect with what you hope to release or commit to in the new year!

Share with us on Instagram @elevatetheglobe your intentions and when you do this meditation and any questions you have!

Elevate the Globe: Founders Britt Deanda and Tara Schulenberg created Elevate the Globe, a spiritual and wellness hub where you can find tools and guidance one needs to raise the vibration of their energy. High vibrations attract powerful thoughts, positive emotions, good health and strong spiritual awareness, and the ETG mission is to empower others to have a ridiculously healthy mind and body. With their easy to follow resources, one will feel so much peace, clarity, and happiness. The planet needs more people who are happy, healthy, and aware, who are living a high vibrational lifestyle. When a person decides to do the inner work, they will RISE UP and ELEVATE the GLOBE.

Related on Organic Authority

The Power Of Kundalini Yoga

Kundalini is known as the Energy Yoga which empowers us to release any stagnant energy sitting at the base of our spine, which is connected to the chakra system. When we are feeling anger or fear, Kundalini Yoga can release this tension with quick movements. The intention is to let go.

Typically, more sedate forms of the Yoga discipline is promoted in modern day practice, which tend to focus on deep breathing, flexibility and stretching of the muscles and joints. Kundalini is the polar opposite of this approach. It combines meditation with cardiovascular and muscle strength building exercises.

There is a major caution with this kind of Yoga, since it is best to avoid it if you have any serious back, brain, neck or shoulder conditions. Also, do not do Kundalini if your pregnant, unless the session is specifically geared towards this under the guidance of a reputable teacher. Always consult with a doctor if your unsure and be aware of what your body can do and can’t do in the present moment.

To find resources, local metaphysical stores often carry books and DVDs to get you started. Your local library usually has great resources for free, or shop via the internet. There are also Kundalini classes or videos available on YouTube, which you can do in the comfort of your home.

Your body structure is not based on what vitamin you eat, what vegetable you eat, what protein you take in. Your pranic body and your auric body must coincide to keep you young and alive. That’s where youth is. If you take half an hour to forty-five minutes to do a good set of Kundalini Yoga, that will keep you going ~ Yogi Bhajan

For those who are new to this kind of Yoga, it is important to take your time and don’t give up! It can be challenging at first, but it will be worth the effort. It is a transformational activity that offers clarity and a spiritual breakthrough which removes fear. I have been at a crossroads many times, frustrated with my life and the world. Kundalini helped me out of those blockages, both internally and externally.

If this yoga is overwhelming at first, begin with a slower moving routine like Sun salutations to get your body flowing and then transition step by step to more advanced movements. Results won’t happen overnight, so start where you feel comfortable.

About The Author: Laura

Attracting people from all walks of life, Laura has always been the type others come to for advice and direction. An initiated shaman, she’s helped others to transcend fear and resolve dark aspects to achieve greatness in life and overcome limitations from the past.Spiritually, she’s a mixed bag of traditional meets mystical, blending the best parts of Christian, Jewish and Muslim faiths with intuition and magic. She’s been referred to as a witch, but considers herself a shaman. She uses her psychic gifts and divination tools to help you see the truth, awaken your spirit and overcome any problem. Contact Laura for a psychic reading at PsychicAccess.com

Boost Your Immunity with Kundalini Yoga

Our new Kundalini Yoga teacher, Elisabeth Mitterrutzner, writes how Kundalini Yoga can help us stay warm and well this Winter…

It’s getting nippy and dark out there: cold and flu season is upon us again. But not to worry, there is a lot you can do to skip that low energy beat this year – and that’s without drugs or natural supplements. The magic formula is Kundalini Yoga: an ancient system that combines dynamic physical movement, specific breathing exercises , meditation as well as mantra chanting to promote optimum health. So how and why does it work?

  1. It keeps you warm – on the inside. the sets of exercises in Kundalini Yoga, known as Kriyas, tend to make you sweat. The foundational breathing technique used is Breath of Fire: a rapid, belly-pumping breath pattern.  It generates great heat and oxygenates the blood thus helping the body to detoxify.
  2. It works the organs of the immune system, e.g. the spleen. The spleen purifies the blood by removing old blood cells and producing lymphocytes or white blood cells.  These lymphocytes are the body’s defense against chemicals, microorganisms, and cancer (e.g. “Kriya to make you enchantingly beautiful”)
  3. It helps you let go. At this time of year, we can learn from the trees how beautiful it is to let go. Many Kriyas and meditations in Kundalini Yoga focus on eliminating, detoxifying and cleansing (e.g. “Kriya for the Lower Spine and Elimination”) by specifically working on the relevant organs (stomach, liver, pancreas, intestines).
  4. It stimulates your glands. Two paramount glands for a well-functioning immune system are the thymus gland (involved in maturing white blood cells) and the adrenal glands (which produce the stress hormone cortisol which can cause infections and inflammation).
  5. It supports stress management – in a study carried out by a Swedish university, Kundalini Yoga was just as effective as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in reducing stress.  All of the practices – movement, breath, meditation and mantra – work to increase the activity of the parasympathetic nervous system which regulates the rebuilding functions of the body, slows the breath, relaxes the nerves and coordinates the recovery period from stress.

So why not bypass the chemist this year and join Elisabeth for a 4 week course in Kundalini Yoga for Immunity, starting Monday 14th November, 7.00-8.15pm at Om Yoga.  Cost: €60.  Drop-in trial class on Monday 7th November, 7.00-8.15pm.  Cost: €16.

Call 085 2766695 for more info or book online.

The post Boost Your Immunity with Kundalini Yoga appeared first on Omyoga.

Christ-Centered Kundalini Yoga

For me, stepping into the end of pregnancy is like stepping into another dimension. It’s like you’re inhabiting the same space as everyone else, but you’re not really all there. It is simultaneously isolating and comforting to inhabit this otherworld. I find myself retreating often, pulling inside, wanting space. Lately, I want to be home, to relax, read, care for my plants, sit in silence. When I have to leave my nest and venture into public, I’m dissociated from it. I don’t really want to talk to people. I want to be invisible.

So I’ve been wondering… is this common? Do other women feel more introverted, retreating into their nests, at the end of pregnancy? I don’t know whether it’s common, but a little Internet perusal has demonstrated that I’m definitely not alone in my isolation:

Now I find myself much more introverted than I ever used to be. The growing symptoms of pregnancy demand it in some ways. We get tired quicker, and our body doesn’t want to do the things it used to. There is so much going on inside, you can’t help but draw in on yourself during these last few months. The Daily Soul Sessions

During the last month or so of pregnancy I become a severe cave woman.  I nest to the extreme.  I clean things that should never be cleaned, like ALL of my son’s toys or the bathroom mirror. . . . I avoid the phone, and I spend as much time alone as possible. . . . Now is my time to savor as much ‘me’ time; not engaging, interacting. Trail of Crumbs

Anyone else start to feel almost reclusive in their third trimester? So I’ve always been a homebody, but lately I just want to shut out the whole world and only focus on myself and my husband. . . . Is that weird? . . . I wish I could just seal my whole world in a bubble and not let anyone in until I am ready. BabyBumps Reddit Forum

I just don’t want to see anyone right now. Is this abnormal? Maybe the hormones are making me antisocial? I am generally a private, introverted person and visits take a lot out of me.Alpha Mom

I have a few theories about why this happens for some women. One of those theories is based in our olfactory systems. I’ve written before that during the mate-selection process, women are naturally drawn toward the scents of men whose major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes are different from their own. This ensures that offspring will have greater variation in their immune systems and gene pools which prevents miscarriage, autoimmune problems, and other issues. During pregnancy (or while taking birth control pills), however, this olfactory preference is reversed. Pregnant women actually prefer the smell of kin. Jenna Pincott explains:

Suddenly we’re no longer drawn to people who smell different from ourselves. We like smell-alikes–people with body odors that resemble our own. . . . Pregnant women may be more attracted to people who smell like kin and are more motivated to strengthen their relationships with them (Do Chocolate Lovers Have Sweeter Babies?: The Surprising Science of Pregnancy, p. 11).

It makes sense to me that our biology would drive us to pull away from “strangers” and surround ourselves with family during the vulnerable end-of-pregnancy period. We need support, and family members are those generally best-suited to provide that support and protection.

Another theory I have about this isolationism relates to the late-pregnancy surge in prolactin levels. I’ve written before that I suspect prolactin is largely responsible for what we call the “nesting urge.” During the last weeks of pregnancy, prolactin surges above progesterone and estrogen. It takes the lead.

I suspect that there is something about the combination of hormones and neurotransmitters at the end of pregnancy that leads to a steep decrease in dopamine. High dopamine levels will inhibit prolactin. So it makes sense to me that dopamine levels would be low at the end of pregnancy. High prolactin and low dopamine would naturally result in a significant reduction of sex drive–no surprise to any woman in her third trimester.

So what does dopamine have to do with my topic of the day? Apparently, introversion and extroversion are also connected to dopamine:

Dopamine is a chemical released in the brain that provides the motivation to seek external rewards like earning money, climbing the social ladder, attracting a mate, or getting selected for a high-profile project at work. When dopamine floods the brain, both introverts and extroverts become more talkative, alert to their surroundings, and motivated to take risks and explore the environment (Source).

If dopamine makes us more motivated to go outside of our comfort zones and be talkative, and if my dopamine levels are currently lower than usual, it would make sense why I don’t feel like venturing out or talking much. Ordinarily, I’m more introverted than extroverted, but sort of in the middle of the spectrum. I suspect that right now, I’ve moved much further toward the introverted side of the spectrum.

It’s all fascinating to me–how slight changes in our brain chemistries can lead to such giant shifts in behavior.  So if I seem stand-off-ish lately, it’s totally not you. It’s me and my third-trimester brain chemistry. xoxo

Do you find yourself seeking solitude at the end of pregnancy? I’d love to hear about your experience. 

Kundalini Yoga and the Turban | Mystic Yogini

turbanI am a turban lover.

I became a turban lover after my first set of teacher training classes.

On the Sunday of my training I did all of my practices with a white scarf tied around my head, and I was shocked at the difference in my practice. I was curious about experimenting with the turban because of what was spoken about in our class on the Saturday.

Guru Raj Kaur explained to us that she doesn’t wear her turban because she is Sikh. She wears a turban because she’s a kundalini yogini.

The turban is actually an energetic practice. The turban when is tied properly on the head connects the arcline of the person strengthening it and acting as a container of the energy that is being raised in their practice.

The arcline is a meridian that runs from earlobe to earlobe and gives you the ability to focus, concentrate and also facilitates your radiance. It connects and balances your connection between the Universe and Physical realms. When its not strong you will find yourself easily influenced and overprotective.

When we practice kundalini yoga with a turban on what happens is the energy that we are inviting and pushing up from the base of our spine through our crown chakra gets captured and contained. It creates a strong arcline. Its not just going through our crown and being dispersed everywhere.

It is said that the skull contains 26 bones. When we wear a turban we are massaging and relaxing the skull, allowing the bones in our cranium to remain free to move instead of hardening in place. The bones in our cranium are meant to move; as we grow up they become locked in place and the pineal gland begins to calcify which has a direct relationship to how old our body is. Each of the 26 bones in our skull controls the entire nervous system of our brain.

There are many practices that I’ve come across this summer that work on creating movement in the bones around the skull. The more that they move, the less the pineal gland becomes calcified, and the longer life we live. The turban helps to keep these bones moving and in harmony with each other especially as we work with the energy system.

I decided to experiment. And I fell in love.

microcosmic-orbitThe turban totally contained the energy shifting in my practice. I had been experiencing for a few months at the time of trying a turban on what felt to be leaky energy, especially in my yoga and meditation practices. As soon as I did the practice with the turban the flow energy changed. It didn’t feel like it was leaking. It felt like it was flowing in the micro-cosmic orbit of my field instead.

And I felt much more high. I felt much more positively affected by the meditation and practice, like it had a stronger influence on me.

I highly recommend that you give it a try. For me, it is now what I wear whenever I do my practice.

It doesn’t have to be a turban either. I’m saving up to purchase 7 yards of fabric for a true turban so right now I wear a white head covering. My first experience was with a purple scarf. The key of whatever head covering you choose to use is that it covers the crown of your head and extends across your arcline for best results.

The turban is also closely related to the hair. It’s recommended that the hair gets put up into a pony tail and coiled on the crown chakra as the hair is one hundred percent protein and acts as energy sensors for our electromagnetic field. When its coiled on the crown it helps to keep the energy “in”. It helps raise the kundalini.

The hair has been revered in many societies due to the way it effects the intuition and our connection with the Universe around us. There is a study that Native Americans who kept their hair long were better trackers and much more intuitive until enlisted in the army and forced to cut their hair. There is the story where Samson lost all of his strength when Delilah cut his hair.

I have half a head of hair (one side is shaved and one side is past my shoulders) so I typically will put up the half of hair and put it in a bun since I don’t have enough hair to coil.

What are your experiences with a turban? Have you noticed a shift covering your head verses not in your practice? How about noticing a difference in a hair cut and your intuition?

How to Tie A Turban
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Kundalini Yoga

Reduce Stress and Improve Wellbeing with Kundalini Yoga

  • Are you looking to improve your happiness, health and wellbeing this year?
  • Would you like to learn new ways to reduce stress and create inner calm and wellness?
  • Are you willing to trying something quite different and transformative to get you there?

If so, Kundalini Yoga could be for you.

Kundalini yoga is a transformative and powerful yoga that works on the mind, body and soul.  It is “yoga of awareness” and combines physical exercises with meditation, mantra, relaxation and breath work to give the student a complete experience of inner wellbeing and connection.

Kundalini yoga is the yoga for the average householder and can be practised by anyone.  It is often seen as a powerful catalyst for personal change and development.   It is a complete science handed down through a lineage and legacy of teachers originating in India, thousands of years ago.   It was brought to the West in the 1960s by Yogi Bhajan, a spiritual leader and teacher from India who decided the time had come for this sacred technology to be available to everyone.

Kundalini yoga differs from other yoga in that it is taught in specific sets. This is to ensure you benefit from the desired effect and change of state.  In this way it supports full integration of mind, body and spirit. 

In Kundalini Yoga, each yoga set has key benefits which allow you to work on key aspects of yourself.  Many of these also target specific health and wellness issues, such as:

  • Reducing stress
  • Enhancing positivity
  • Developing self-esteem
  • Reducing negativity
  • Developing intuition and higher awareness
  • Tackling addictions
  • Developing emotional balance

Kundalini yoga sets always include meditation, sometimes silent, or sometimes with mantra and music.  This enables you to have a complete experience of connecting to your inner self in a new and elevating way and will complement the Kriya.   In particular, for meditations with mantra, the power of the Naad and sound current, allows you (without trying, thinking or doing anything) to elevate your thought patterns and enhance your overall experience.  The mantras can be spell-bounding and truly transformative with the power to quieten and transcend even the most active of minds!

Kundalini Yoga focuses specifically on the flow of energy through the body and includes many physical, mental and energetic perspective benefits. It also works across the 7 chakras and aura as well as the ten bodies as identified in yogic philosophy.  Some key benefits include: strengthening the immune system, creating a stronger and healthier body, balancing emotions and the glandular system, strengthening the nervous system, as well as bringing clarify of mind. All of these things together promotes a sense of peace and inner tranquillity and wellness.

And remember Kundalini Yoga is so much more than just an exercise routine to keep you healthy.  It is a complete experience for the mind, body and the soul and a platform for personal transformation and elevation.   When practised regularly it can affect your perspective and perception of life and your role within it.  It can bring conscious awareness, intentions and truth to our world.

So if you are looking to elevate your experience for this year and unlock your creative potential, come join us for a local class!

Enquiries to kelly@consciousintentions.co.uk or 01273 252656

You can also sign up directly on our Kundalini Yoga Bookings Page

The Role of Women in Kundalini Yoga

Women’s Importance Through Yoga’s History

Written by AYC Instructor, Sierra Hollister

We all know that a regular yoga practice offers multiple benefits for the body, mind and spirit. These benefits include increased flexibility, enhanced physical strength, clarity and calm for the mind, better circulation and so much more.

For women specifically, yoga can support wellness through every stage of life, from child to child-bearing years, prenatal and postnatal, and beyond.  Of all the yoga’s offered, Kundalini Yoga in particular has rich, deep and specific teachings for those that identify as women. The man who brought the teachings of Kundalini to the United States, Yogi Bhajan, was incredibly inspired by women, beginning with his mother and grandmother. More than half of the legacy of teachings that Yogi Bhajan shared were dedicated to spreading the ancient sacred teachings of yoga with women specifically. The motivation to reach women with these teachings was based on his deep belief that the world would never know harmony or peace until women had their rightful place of recognition and respect in the world.

According to the teachings of Kundalini, “Woman is the embodiment of God’s creative power, Shakti. Woman embodies the feminine aspect of God, through which the world was created. That primal power is called the Adi Shakti and has been worshipped for centuries in the form of various goddesses. Every woman has that divine goddess power in her own being, waiting to be recognized.”

While students of Kundalini are immersed in this rich understanding of the role and power of women, many more students in this country are told that as far as women and yoga go, the history is recent. This story has been created by western teachers and unfortunately, yet somewhat reliably, centers a white woman, Eugenie Peterson, as one of the first women to practice yoga. Eugenie Peterson went on to be known as Indra Devi, and while Indra Devi did contribute greatly to the story of yoga in this country, by no means was she the first woman to practice yoga.

Feminist artist, scholar and teacher, Vicki Noble, suggests that women invented the practice of yoga. Noble’s research proposes that there was a widespread female-centered yoga practice dating all the way back to the Paleolithic and Neolithic ages. This early yoga was ritual based and celebrated the blood mysteries of women, birth, healing and death. Graduate student Agi Wittich points to archeological findings that suggest women were a significant part of spiritual life all the way back to the earliest evidence of classical yoga – the Paśupati Seal, dated to 2500 BCE. As support for this thesis, Gates Janica, California Yoga Research and Education Center faculty, says, “women’s inclusion in rituals was considered auspicious, even necessary for the presence of the divine, and women were positively associated with fertility, growth, abundance, and prosperity.” Gates goes on to point out that there are numerous references in the Vedas to female scholars, teachers, mystics, priestesses, and philosophers and as many as twenty-seven female sages.”

Wittich continues to point out in her paper, “Yoga and Women: A Possible History,” that later texts, ones that many of us are much more familiar with, including several of the Upaniṣads and the Mahābhārata, mention wise spiritual women and go so far as to define some as “yoginis”.

Local tantric scholar Ramesh Bjonnes writes that “women have been gurus, healers, yoginis and goddesses since the beginning of time.”

All of which to say, isn’t it time that we stop centering Indra Devi in the story of women and yoga and reach back through time, as yoga itself does? Not only does it feel more powerful to acknowledge that women, especially dark-skinned women, have been practicing, shaping and creating yoga for as long as yoga has been around, but it is also true and gives yoga back its roots and truth.

The practice of yoga, for women by women, is deep, profound and a celebration of the nature of women, our monthly cycles as well as our life cycles. By practicing this way, we open ourselves to the flow of energy rather than achievement of a posture. The journey, rituals and experience of the practice, rather than the physicality of the practice, are paramount.

If you’d like to learn more about women’s role in Kundalini, here are a few resources for you.

Sierra Hollister offers a weekend immersion each year for women that wish to understand more about their unique yogic path, “The Moon Path” at Asheville Yoga Center. Dates this year are April 26-28. If you’d like to attend this weekend workshop, please click here to register.

Sierra will be offering a “Rejuvenation Meditation with Gong” workshop on March 22. This evening will be comprised of some gentle movement, breathwork and then meditation with the gong. If you’d like to attend, please register here.

Sierra also teaches Gentle Kundalini on Mondays at 10am and HOT Kundalini Flow on Thursdays at 7pm.

The post The Role of Women in Kundalini Yoga appeared first on Asheville Yoga Center.

Kundalini Yoga at Salt & Spirit Wellness Vancouver

I immediately feel lighter stepping into Salt & Spirit Wellness. The walls are as white as clouds, a mythically-proportioned gold gong shines at the back of the studio, and crystals shimmer in shades of violet, pink, and blue. It’s the elements you don’t see, however, that work the hardest to lend the studio its uplifting energy. Owner Roberta Vommaro used Feng Shui to design the space—which is washed in natural light thanks to its former life as a photography studio—and laid down a bed of crystals underneath the hardwood floors that work to ground, balance emotion, and protect against negative energy.

The intentional interior design is part of Vommaro’s vision for a place that fosters healing, vitality, and connection. “I wanted to create a place for wellness where you can be yourself and feel good in your skin,” says Vommaro. This ethos is at the heart of the studio’s roster of Kundalini, Hatha, Pilates, and meditation classes. Originally from Brazil, Vommaro worked as a lawyer in New York City for years before inhumane hours and chronic stress finally landed her in the hospital with a kidney infection. “My body was showing signs that I needed to slow down,” says Vommaro. “That’s when I started to look at more meditative, energetic practices like Kundalini.” (Learn why this woman left Canada and moved to Costa Rica.)

Salt & Spirit’s Kundalini classes take their cue from the Yogi Bhajan tradition, incorporating breath work, kriya (an energizing series of postures), and meditation. As I settle into a cross-legged position on my yoga mat and close my eyes, Vommaro explains that we will be working with the Kriya to Make You Enchantingly Beautiful. From the look of Vommaro’s dark, lustrous waist-length hair and radiant skin, this is yoga’s best kept secret. Coming off several weeks of work travel and feeling somewhere between a shriveled raisin and a blowfish, it also sounds like exactly what I need. We start with rhythmic, fast-paced breathing designed to release toxins, increase oxygen to the brain, and strengthen the navel chakra. I’m sweating within minutes and I’ve barely moved. “In kundalini we say that if you strengthen this chakra and use this core energetic centre, you basically align all the others,” explains Vommaro.

We warmup with hip rotations and Cat Cow to increase the flow of energy in the spine and then the kriya moves to a series of arm postures. Intertwining your fingers and stretching your arms behind or in front of yourself looks easy but hold these postures for several minutes and you’ll be crying out for your mother. “Kundalini taught me resilience and grit,” says Vommara. “When you hold an uncomfortable posture and make a commitment to focus and stay with it, it works on your nervous system and ability to trust yourself.” This kriya also works on the glandular and endocrine systems to detoxify and balance stress hormones. Vommara credits the practice to healing her cystic acne. Gong vibrations wash over me during our Savasana meditation, and the class ends with White Sun III calling us back to the room with their ethereal sound. (Love yoga and pilates but don’t have time for both? This combo class is for you.)

My first Kundalini class has ended, and I think I’m a convert. My mind feels clearer, my body lighter. I wish I could bottle this energy up and take it home. The good news is, I can. Salt & Spirit’s Ayurveda-based Graceful Living program offers daily methods for creating vibrancy and health through movement, meditation, and holistic beauty and nutrition regimens. The bespoke sessions are designed to meet a client’s individual needs. “You don’t have to quit your job, take monastic vows, or meditate five hours a day to be happy,” says Vommaro. “Kundalini is for everyone.”