Greetings Moonbow Friends!
Here’s what I have been musing about lately…
During the Autumn season the Air Element is increasing. We may find that some experiences during the day get us caught up in a swirl of emotions, like a pile of fallen leaves picked up by the wind. You may notice this while listening to the news, scrolling on social media, interacting with others, or focusing on negative mind-chatter. You may observe how some events spark old memories that you “thought” were packed up and tucked away in the vault - similar to an autumn leaf hidden up on a high branch. Yet, with a gust of wind, the leaf is released into the breeze and lands at your feet, now offering you an opportunity to really see THAT leaf. Old memories - like the leaf- are brought to light in the present moment and may prompt a positive, negative, or indifferent response. When I feel tested by old memories or I am triggered by an interaction with someone else, I lean strongly into the heart of my yoga practice. This doesn’t mean I instantly bust into some strong arm balance or 108 sun salutations (although moving my body always makes me feel better!) - rather I lean into the motivating introspective practices that remind me how best to treat others and myself in times of challenge and suffering. 99% of the time this leads me to connect with the Brahma Viharas, the 4 Buddhist virtuous attitudes. The other 1% of the time - I eat dark chocolate to ease my suffering - but let’s stay focused on the 99%. The 4 key attitudes tap us into our heart energy and help unlock life’s obstacles, while strengthening our relationships to ourselves and others. The Brahma viharas are also revealed in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra 1.33:
Maitri karuna muditopeksanam sukha duhkha punyapunya visayanam bhavanatas citta prasadanam.
In Donna Farhi’s book, Bringing Yoga to Life, Farhi commentates on Sutra 1.33 by sharing that Patanjali “suggests many practices, from breathing exercise to meditative techniques, (but) he precedes all these suggestions with four down-to-earth recommendations… (Patanjali) suggests that we develop four attitudes to life’s challenges and apply these to all our relationships and in all situations. These qualities of the heart are conducive to peace of mind… They are:
1. Friendliness toward the joyful (Maitri/Metta)
2. Compassion for those who are suffering (Karuna)
3. Celebrating the good in others (Mudita)
4. Remaining impartial to the faults and imperfections of others (Upekha )”
I fully admit that I stumble through the 4 key attitudes all the time and recognize how frequently I get tripped up by envy, petty comparisons, criticisms, or selfishness. The first Brahma vihara, Metta (Friendliness or Loving Kindness), is considered the easiest and helps us gain trust and confidence in the other 3 attitudes. Therefore, when I lose sight and feel overwhelmed by the swirl of emotions and bad attitudes, the simplicity to Just.Be.Kind. to myself and others, re-centers my heart energy.
This Moonbow Musing also reminds me of this year’s first PTO meeting at my daughters’ elementary school. The principal shared the importance of creating a school community that cultivated good citizens of the world. To build this type of school community, the principal has 3 rules:
#1 – Be Kind #2 – Be Kind #3 – Be Kind
Yes, it’s safe to assume that put a smile of appreciation on my face.
Keep reading below for my Upcoming Events, as well as more musings on Yoga and Essential Oils. May all beings be happy, may all beings be free, may there be peace, joy & kindness in the world.
With gratitude and Moonbow blessings,
Want to learn more about the 4 Key Attitudes?
Join me in Ireland next year!
Kindness is Key: An Ireland Yoga Retreat
September 29 – October 4, 2019
Save $300 when you reserve a spot by October 15th and also receive my Moonbow Gratitude Gift (essential oils travel kit and a “Kindness is Key” shirt).
The 4 Keys will be woven into our daily yoga classes, guided meditations, and optional art activities. Special guest and Ireland native, Lisa Hynes, will lead a special class to ignite the courage to keep the 4 keys alive amidst rocky times.
Musing about the Brahma Viharas leads me to thinking about back bending postures, such as - Cobra, Locust, Wheel, and Camel. The heart-opening gesture inherent to all back bends improves our circulation and breathing, stretches the chest and shoulders, strengthens the back muscles, and invites us to shine more from the heart – our hub of loving kindness, compassion, and joy. Jason Crandell has created an intelligent sequence for Camel Pose (Ustrasana) - click on the image and explore how you might fall in love with the posture.
ESSENTIAL OIL MUSING
Diffusing essential oils and breathing in the aroma offers over 70% of the therapeutic benefits of the oil. An “at your ready” diffuser is literally in the palm of your hand. Just add 1 to 2 drops of an essential oil to your palm, and then rub both hands together to gently warm the aroma. Cup your hands over your nose and mouth. Take 5 centering breaths by inhaling smoothly through the nose for a count of 4. Hold the breath and aroma in for 2 counts, and then exhale with ease for a count of 4. After 5 breaths, rest your hands on your legs and simply notice how you feel.
Want to discover easy and effective ways to care for yourself and family with natural solutions?
Schedule a FREE 30 minute Moonbow Wellness Consultation and together, we will pave a solutions path unique for YOU.
doTerra’s Elevation/Joyful Blend combines the uplifting and euphoric floral scents of Lavandin, Lavender, Melissa, Ylang Ylang, and Osmanthus with Tangerine, Elemi, Hawaiian Sandalwood, and Lemon Myrtle to create a unique blend that promotes a positive mood and feelings of confidence.