This week’s videos:
Part One: Introduction and Warm Up
Part Two: Main Sequence
Part Three: Winding Down
THE ELEMENT OF ETHER
“The Magic Happens In The Space!”
You’ll have heard me say this in class I’m sure, and as always, it applies both on and off the mat. It’s what most of us need if we want to create any positive changes, yet it’s the part that is easily forgotten.
Perhaps the most exciting, yet the most difficult of all the elements to explain, is the element of “ether”.
That’s because it isn’t something we can see, or touch, or even smell.
But we only need to look up to the sky to know it’s there. It’s everything that’s not “matter”, it’s so subtle yet so powerful it’s the invisible nothingness that permeates the Whole Universe.
It’s where all creation begins.
We know this from modern physics. All creation starts from nothingness. In this respect it is regarded as the root cause of all the elements.
It’s present in the hollow cavities between matter, whether in or outside of the body, in the form of radio frequencies, light radiation, and cosmic rays. It’s a mini cosmos. How exciting does that sound?
If you’re confused right now, don’t worry, in fact, embrace it. Confusion is good, it means you’re learning, and even if you aren’t there yet, you are seeking, which inevitably leads to learning, so celebrate the confusion, and let the wise one Sadhguru explain it:
Another explanation is for me to use the example of pea soup, that’s not been completely blended.
The peas are matter, like me and you, the physical bits of energy, everything in nature, even buildings, socks, flowers, books, the birds, bees and trees. Akasha, or ether, is everything else in that soup. The fantastic part, which is recognised by both science and spirituality now is that we are part of the soup.
That may have confused you even more, but stay with it…. here’s where the magic is.
That space is the place of pure potential, it is the un-manifest, it’s what hasn’t appeared yet. It’s all that’s out there for you that you haven’t even dreamed up yet.
Have you ever noticed that the best things that happened to you in life weren’t the things you had in your 5 year plan, nor the things that you expected to happen, but the things you hadn’t even imagined?
Or why you get your best ideas on the loo, or whilst on holiday, or out for a walk on your own? It’s because there is space for the new to come in…
Choose a night this week, and either on your own, go somewhere there is minimal light pollution, and just lay on your back and look up to the stars.
Yes, of course, take something cosy to lie on, and wrap yourself up in, but you don’t need to stay long. Just spend 15 minutes gazing up at the stars, and consider this concept of space, and see what crops up…
Try to release yourself of any expectations, have no fixed outcomes, just be….
SPACE IN THE BODY
In the context of movement and what we are doing on the mat, part of the purpose in our practise is to create more “space”.
Without space, freedom of movement is restricted, tissues become dehydrated, discs become compressed, and the energy can’t flow freely. If you want to see this more crudely, the blood, oxygen and nutrients can’t get to the cells that need them.
What modern life has brought to us is a body that is contracted, restricted by patterns of movement, sitting for long periods has taken it’s toll. Doing the same thing day in, day out, without proper movement, movement as nature intended, even the same yoga poses again and again, we get stuck.
We need to move into new spaces. Mix things up a bit! I call it wild yoga, because it’s unconstrained. It’s putting the body back into it’s natural state. It’ moving in a way which is unique to you, based on what your body needs….and it will tell you…. if you take space to listen.
Where are you constricted? Where isn’t there energy flowing. I can tell you that, for me, it’s after long spells of manic typing whilst I’m free flow in writing mode, I need to sort out my neck and shoulders.
Also sitting down for long periods of time, being on a car journey, or even worse, a plane, my spine feels so compressed, all I want to do is hang upside down. This is why I love aerial yoga so much!!
It gets space back between the vertebrae and the discs.
Here’s the challenge, you need space to be aware that you need space. If you’re rushing around mindlessly all the time, there’s no way you’re going to be conscious of what your body needs. But this is the key to a healthy, happy body. Being aware.
“But I’m so busy!!! I don’t have time!!”
Yes you do have time. It’s the most important time you will ever spend. Make time. Sorry to be bossy, but JFDI!!
So I’m sure you work to a diary don’t you, and you schedule in all your important appointments..? So now go to your diary and schedule in some SPACE.
Yes, really, and don’t be tempted to cross it out when something you think is more important crops up… try to stick to it. If it feels better, write in essential health time, or something which helps you understand the importance of it.
If you can put in 15 minutes a day then great, this will change your life.
I was always guilty of filling up every minute of every day, with work, socialising, general busy-ness, it eventually catches up with you, and often it’s an avoidance of some pain that needs heal. It’s a symptom of something else.
I learned a trick which was to mark whole weekends out in my calendar with “Keep Free”. These were some of my best times, and where I really started to build a positive relationship with myself. Nowadays I like my space so much, I have to do the opposite and make sure I get enough connection! It’s all a balance!
For many, just sitting in meditation for 15 minutes trying to clear the mind is a step too far, so here’s one I use especially when I have a busy mind, when I’m struggling to be still.
Singing the words is optional, but highly recommended as it opens the throat chakra, which is all part of the Ether element which I’ll explain below.
You know that feeling when you walk into a room and you just want to walk straight back out again, but you don’t know why?
Or every time you are around a certain person you end up feeling drained?
Or perhaps it’s just that feeling of overwhelm when too many people are all talking at the same time?
It’s all about the vibes, man…
Yeah, I know, it all sounds like a bit of hippy nonsense, doesn’t it? But guess what? You got it, there is science behind it.
Everything has a vibrational frequency, we are vibrational beings, even if you can’t hear the sounds, the vibrations are still there at various frequencies. They exist and are there for creation and manifestation.
Just as ether is the root of the other elements, silence is the mother of all sound.
And we can raise our vibrational frequency, that’s the great part.
How do we do this?
** Spending time in places of high vibrational frequency will help, which is why spending time in nature is so beneficial. We start to match with the energy we are in. So be aware of the effect where you are is having on you.
Consider this – “We Thrive In The Right Environment!” That’s why I’m in Molunat, I can feel it’s healing energy and the effect it has on me!
** Watch your words. The words we use, as well as the intention behind them, are so important. The ground-breaking work of Japanese pseudoscientist Masuro Emoto proved this beyond doubt.
So always try to speak positively, to yourself and to others, tell positive stories and avoid gossip, and even get yourself a mantra!
** Sing like no-one’s listening!!! Sing along with something that resonates with you. Watch how you respond to different pieces of music.
One of the reasons many of you loved Elysium was the music. It has been shown that the title track from it “Elysium” by Lisa Gerrard actually does raise the vibrational frequency in the body. How exciting is that?
If you don’t know it, take a listen. Lie back and let it wash over you. Or do what I do and just let the body move (freestyle dancing) and see what happens…
Another great piece of music I use for class which is uplifting and uses a mantra which may resonate is this one….
The Mantra is Loka Samasta Sukinho Bhavantu, which means “may all beings be happy and free”.
What’s not to love about that?
Finally, officially the piece of music that is best for reducing anxiety and balancing the nervous system, is this one I use for relaxation at the end of class…
There is a little method in my madness don’t you know??? 🙂 Enjoy …..