The space in between

I like to take my students through their breath before we tune in with Adi mantra, to the teacher before, with and within us.

We inhale trust, exhale fear. We inhale flow, exhale letting go of holding on. We exhale layers and layers of what does not serve us. We lengthen and lighten, root deeper and deeper.

The space in between, the yogis name it kumbhaka, is that precious pause between inhalation and exhalation.

It is the space of becoming. Everything that is yet to be. It is the space I inhabit at this very moment.

It is pregnant with possibilities, yet full of nothingness.

In the very present moment, I am witnessing the ebbing and flowing of my breath above my lips, observing the unfolding, and patterns and rhythms of months gone by.

The older I get, the more I value slow, conscious living. You know, pause, breathe deeply, and soften and ground. And taking time. Lots of time to connect to my inner stillness. As the months pass, the more I see the virtue in having the courage to leave behind safety and denial, to follow what lights me up, to love what I love.

This Super Full Moon in Libra and the beginning of an astrological year in Aries, both at zero degrees signifying a major reset, I ponder everything I let go off. I bow deeply to the many deaths that brought me to the fertile ground I am standing today. The seeds I have been planting are beginning to sprout.

The younger me thought being fiercely independent, resilient and strong willed was strength. As I am inching my way to 50, I realize strength is rooting more and more into myself, that I live deep and true, to the wind with certainties and niceties.

With this strength, I can begin again and again. I am alive. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Happy Super Full Moon and Spring Equinox!

The gift of breath

Humee hum tumee toom wahe guru

I am thine in mine myself wahe guru

Teaching this meditation in a Kundalini Yoga class last week, as part of an introspective yearend set, I too was stricken by how my yoga practice has connected me to my own infinity.

Because the practice of yoga is less about asana and more about what transpires outside the mat, how you show up for the practice is a reflection of how you show up for life.

Are you moving through breathlessly and relentlessly? Are you taking a few moments to pause before transiting into the next exercise?

My practice – and life – changed the moment I took more than a pause between asanas.

Taking time to consciously breathe through each nostril, to feel my entire torso filling up with breath, the breath that sustains us, is almost cathartic.

Soul-cleansing cathartic.

Most significantly, Pranayama, one of the Eight Limbs of Yoga, has shown me the virtues of breathing space into everything.

Breathing when I am chewing my food. Breathing when I am walking to catch a bus. Breathing when my heart aches.

It’s as if breathing through every core of my being has allowed me to viscerally and gently embrace all the unknowns and what-ifs that are unfolding before me.

The insecurity that comes with anticipating the disasters ahead dissolves when there’s space to step back, and you know, breathe cool breaths into a raging storm that always threatens to tear me up.

The moment I realized the sense of vastness in me mirrors the infinity offered by the universe, doors crack open. I receive people, places and little bounties that serve my highest good.

I have trusted the stream of consciousness offered by my breath will steadily and gracefully guide my every step.

This breath nourishes me as it fills my heart with a deep sense of gratitude.

It is with gratitude – and lungs and belly full of breaths – I am starting 2018, knowing the gift of breath will open me to the vast oceans in and outside of me.

Truly, everything is inside of me.

I am thine in mine myself.

Wahe guru!