Emotional Alignment: Part 1

***image1***The body is a map of our emotional history and orientation. One place this is very evident is in the pelvis. It’s interesting that in various places in the country/world, we see patterns of holding which seem to typify the mood or sensibility of that community or culture. Hip opening exercises are a consistent request we get in our workshops.

Without knowing why, people sense this is something they need. They sense they are going to feel a tremendous release afterwards and feel great. A pelvis free of tension lets the energy flow freely. The impact of this is profound. Flow is an important word for the 2nd center. Its element is water and the energy here is meant to be fluid, mutable, flowing and changing. 2nd chakra energy is creative energy and creation thrives on change. When the pelvis is balanced rather than controlled it becomes the dynamic moving force its meant to be. Similarly when we let go of control our lives are more dynamic. With creative energy flowing freely life can be exciting, vibrant and uniqueWhen we release the pelvis and let go of gripping we are replacing fear with faith. Part of the relief we feel when the pelvis is opened is from the chord struck deep within us that we are on the right path–that life will change and as long as we can stay flexible and open we’ll be okay. Relinquishing control is one of life’s most difficult lessons. We need to be able to go with the flow.A gripped, tucked, pelvis is most often caused by:Control issues. The need to control emanates from the times in our lives when we felt we had no control, usually early traumas. For instance, not getting fed on time as an infant literally became a matter of life and death. For many people, on a very deep level, food = security.Fear of Intimacy. When we don’t feel “safe” the 2nd chakra tries to do the work of the 1st. Then instead of flowing in life we hold back from intimacy and fulfillment. Physiologically, when the pelvis is gripped it’s impossible to sense our grounding or bring the Navel Center into play.The following two issues are usually seen in a tilted forward pelvis, jutting the tailbone, back is usually caused by:Fear of responsibility. Perpetual adolescence. Adolescence is a magical time and it is easy for our energy to get stuck here. This is the Peter Pan syndrome, also known in Jungian psychology as Puer/Puella Aeturnus. The need to stay young as long as possible. Our present culture is obsessed with this archetype.Feelings of powerlessness. This is an issue of self esteem. The problem lies in that in order to strengthen our ego we need to work the navel and any imbalance in the pelvis will keep us from effectively engaging the navel.In order to free our pelvis we need to work the 1st chakra for grounding and the 3rd chakra for self esteem, will, and fearless focus. This will give our 2nd center the security it needs in order for it to let go of its control.1. Butterfly Pose is a classic hip opener. Bring the soles of your feet together, knees bent, and angle forward. To work on the grounding element really press the soles of the feet into one another. You should feel how this releases the thighs to fall open wider. Keep the navel pulled slightly in and up towards the spine as you elongate your spine forward. Long Deep Breathing. 1 – 3 Min.2. One of the best exercises to open the hips while engaging the Navel and Root chakras is Bridge Pose. Lie on your back with feet flat and knees bent. Pressurize the navel by pulling it in and up towards the spine. Elongate the tailbone towards your heels. Keep this feeling of support in the navel center as you press firmly into the soles of your feet and your shoulders to raise the pelvis. The crux of this exercise is to elevate the pelvis due to the pressure of the shoulders and especially the feet pressing downwards into the floor. Long Deep Breathing. 1 – 3 Min.3. This one is a good one to release gripping in the front of the hips while you make deep contact with the Navel Center. Lie on your back with the knees bent and feet flat. Let the knees fall into one another – knock kneed. Clasp the fingers behind the head at the base on the skull. Inhale down and exhale up. Make sure the area where the thighs meet the pelvis stay relaxed. 1 – 3 Min.In addition to increasing circulation and freedom in the pelvis, the first exercise also works the kidney meridian and sex nerve which are associated with fertility and potency. The sex nerve is an area where a lot of energy gets trapped. If this energy is not released and redirected it will usually be expressed as nervous activity. This is a great one to avoid hot flashes during menopause.The second exercise works on the psoas muscle. The psoas muscle is our core support. Bridge pose done in the way described will lengthen and strengthen this muscle. A healthy second chakra is reflected in a pelvis which balances strength and flexibility.Exercise 3 will help you get your power back***image2***Meditation of the Month – 2 Techniques for Emotional BalanceYour fingertips are meeting a diaphragm level, fingers spread wide, thumbs pointing back towards the body. Your eyes are 1/10 open looking down and in towards the tip of the nose. Inhale for 5 seconds through the nose, hold the breath for 5 seconds, exhale for 5 seconds thru puckered lips. Continue for 3-5 min. As you exhale, feel the negative emotions you’re trying to resolve dissolve.Sit comfortably with a straight spine. Your eyes are 1/10 open looking down and in towards the tip of the nose. Press your thumbs against your index, middle, ring, and little fingertips progressively as you chant Sa-Ta-Na-Ma in a powerful whisper. Pull your navel in towards the spine with each syllable. As you do this go into the emotion you’re trying to resolve. Remember, if you can feel it you can heal it! To end, hold the breath for 10 seconds, tighten your whole body, then exhale forcefully through puckered lips. Do this twice more.Thoughts are waves on the ocean of the mind. Emotions are strong currents. They can be one of the most beautiful aspects of the human experience or potentially the most destructive. Yoga seeks not to repress emotions but to transform them: anger into inspiration, fear into freedom, sadness into gladness, grief into gratitude.

To bring this about you need the proper tools. The two techniques are simple but powerful. Make these part of your life and pass them on. The ability to determine you own state is grounds for mastery and a life well lived. It is no accident that these powerful spiritual technologies are being made available to us at this time. As many spiritual dramas have demonstrated, the Universe provides for humanity in the times of greatest need.

For more information visit www.raviana.com Contact us at 1.800.243.9642E-mail us at ravianayoga@aol.com

by Ravi Singh & Ana Brett
Ravi and Ana been featured presenters at the Midwest Yoga Conference, The Toronto Yoga Show, and the Six Days on Freedom Retreat. Their clients have included Olympic Athletes and celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Madonna, Lou Reed, Carrie-Anne Moss, Donna Karan, and The Red Hot Chile Peppers. They’ve taught in many diverse contexts: from Iceland to Maui, Canada to Costa Rica, from boardrooms and Park Avenue Penthouses, to scientists at Bell Labs, from Opera Singers at the Aspen Music Festival and street kids in Los Angeles to backstage at Broadway plays. They are Authors of the Fat Free Yoga DVD series and the forthcoming book Fat Free Yoga.