Chakra Balancing

As we continue into week two of our chakra healing adventure, we will begin to look at how an imbalance in one chakra can affect the others. We will be working with the Vishudda (throat) chakra because most of us use our voices every day. The vishudda governs communication in all forms. It is how we express ourselves; how we express our beliefs, emotions, likes and dislikes; it shows up in our tone, inflection, and even our body language.

The Vishudda also links our inner true self with the self we put on display for the world. Most of us lead two lives. Our outer persona typically morphs into what others expect of us (or what we THINK they expect of us.) We have a role to play and show up willing to don what ever hat we have been asked to wear. Then there is our inner voice, the voice of our AUTHENTIC self. It is this voice which we need to bring forth. We need to release the fear of being ourselves.

Vishudda (Throat) /Muladhara (Root)

The root chakra grounds us, connecting us to the rich Earth energies. Support, courage, survival are the key elements of the root chakra. When the Muladhara is balanced, we KNOW who we are; we stand tall, grounded and sure footed in our understanding of our place in the world. When the root chakra is suffering from imbalance we become unsteady and can allow others to overly influence our decisions.

The imbalance of the root chakra can lead to issues with how we communicate because the energies of the root will entangle with the energies of the throat chakra. If we are lacking confidence in ourselves it show up in our speech and body language. We essentially have a hard time being our authentic self.

Our speech may begin to be colored with words of appeasement in difficult situations if the root chakra has been weakened. If we are unable to stand up for our truth, we may then have feelings of shame or inadequacy. If the root chakra is carrying an excess of energy, our speech can become clipped and insincere and we begin to dwell in the realm of the ego.

Return to Balance

In order to balance our root chakra and bring authenticity to our voice we need to ask ourselves the following questions:

Who am I?

What do I value?

Do my words, tone, and body language resonate with my inner truth?


Additionally, we can practice energy work to align our root and throat chakra.

Try this: Stand tall, barefoot in the grass. Relax your shoulders and your jaw. Take a few deep breath’s and feel the Earth energy flow in to you body. You are rooted to the Earth energy, you are grounded and supported. Breathe in slowly and feel your breath swirl down your throat bathing you throat chakra in healing energies. Exhale fully, emptying the stale breath from your lungs. As you exhale, feel your throat relax and open as all of the stale breath (energy- thoughts and emotions) leave your body. Repeat these slow deep breath’s; breathing in strength and truth; breathing out what no longer serves you.


This exercise can be repeated daily, strengthening our awareness of the flow of energy within the body while balancing our root and throat chakras.

If you are interested in deepening your practice or learning more about Reiki training, please contact me.

Namaste.

Well-being

As summer begins to wind down, I notice that I haven’t been as mindful with regards to what I am taking in.  As the days get shorter, they also seem to get busier, more hectic, less intentional.  I notice this shift in awareness about 4 times a year, usually prior to the solstices and equinoxes. This shift in awareness indicates time for intentional change.

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I have been aware of my natural cycles for most of my adult life. This is in part due to being diagnosed with endometriosis and adenomyosis in my mid 20’s in addition to suffering from debilitating migraines. I had to become acutely aware of my body’s cycles such as sleep cycles and how my eating habits affected my day to day pain levels. It was during this time that I developed a more holistic approach to my life.

I became a vegetarian. I started practicing yoga and meditation. I shifted my life from pain and anxiety to fulfillment and joy. Learning how to relax, find peace during difficult moments, and how to heal from within. I then studied with Usui Reiki Master Christine Brown. I completed my training and began practicing as an Usui Reiki Master Teacher. This experience allowed me deeper insight to the mind body connection. I thrived; up until about 4 years ago.

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During my 30’s I was able to manage the endometriosis with diet, exercise, and acupuncture. What I perceived as the downward spiral of my health began slowly over the course of months in my late 30’s, with symptoms such as increased pain, heavier flow, and more migraines. Suddenly, how I’d been managing my symptoms wasn’t working anymore. The endometriosis had reached my diaphragm and I began having a hard time breathing at night and was forced to sleep sitting up. After a trip to the ER for what my doctor thought was appendicitis, it was found that I also had Degenerative Disk Disease. After getting the results from the ER, my doctor decided to run a ton of blood work. I had to go back on the IUD to control some of the symptoms. It was also found that I had Mono. Due to the mono diagnosis, I could not continue with my normal workout routine of Pilates, yoga, and weight training for 8 months. My pain management routine was out the window.

Fast forward to summer of 2020. Mono over with. Fitness regime back on point and still debilitating pain. I was using a cane to walk off and on for almost a year. Getting up was a struggle. Going to the gym require Motrin and stubborn dedication. I had found a new OBGYN a year earlier and she was(is) amazing. Tons of information regarding symptoms and treatments. After many months of research and discussion, I decided to try Lupron in addition to the IUD. Lupron puts you into a menopausal state. It is also used to treat various cancers, so not to be taken lightly. I was very reluctant but could no longer mentally deal with the pain. It was affecting my day-to-day life. So, Lupron. Where to begin. It’s a 3-month dose. the first month is rough. I wound up with having about 6 weeks pain free. Amazing. Then I was due for the next shot, and the cycle begins again- a very rough first month followed by 6 weeks of minimal pain, but the MIGRAINES…

At the time of writing this have been off of Lupron for 4 months. After the second shot my migraines double, then tripled. I was experiencing multiple migraines a week and could not get out of bed.

The side effects are more than I can deal with. Although my pain has returned, I can at least, slowly get out of bed.  I also KNOW that all my pain is from the ENDO! So now I can focus on shifting my diet towards less inflammatory foods and shifting my mindset back towards ease with practices which foster flow.

So here I am. The beginning of a 21-day Chakra Cleanse. By getting back to basics of my personal energy I can reestablish healthy habits. By taking the time each day to sit in stillness, feeling the flow of energy though my being, I notice subtle imbalance.  Over the course of 21 days I can shift this energy, releasing what no longer serves me and experience atonement (at-one-ment).

“I am rooted, but I flow.”

Virginia Wolfe

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If you would like to join me in the 21 day chakra cleanse, please follow @bliss_awakening on Instagram.

Namaste

Anahata

A friend gave me this beautifully simple pendant yesterday. She thought I would like it because it is carved from a shell. She was right.

I sat quietly contemplating its simplicity- calcium carbonate which naturally forms a Fibonacci spiral in order for life to protect itself from nature, the very thing that created it. How amazing the circle of life.

The beginning of the spiral sits centered in the heart or we could say the spiral is the heart center. And shouldn’t it? Should love (unconditional Universal love) spiral perfectly outward from each of our heart centers? Our daily responsibilities allow us to forget our true nature, our authentic self. We become caught up in the identity and expectations others have for us and we forgot our expansive nature. We need to take time each day to remember who we are and where we come from.

We are children of the universe, each being as unique as a fingerprint, each with our own energetic identity. We are energy in form, a beautiful process of the Universe.

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Let’s begin to remember our true self, lets open our hearts to LOVE. We can work with our Heart Charka to bring our awareness back to the divine.


Sit quietly and breathe slowly and evenly. Feel your breath move through your physical body. Feel the life force of your breath move through your etheric body. Place your hand over your heart center and breathe slowly and evenly. Visualize radiant healing energy spiraling in your heart center. Allow this energy to spiral in synchronicity with your breath. Feel this energy pulsate within your chest, filling your soul with LOVE & LIGHT. Know you are connected to everything. The universe moves within your heart. Breathe slowly and deeply. Exhale and feel LOVE spiral out from your heart center. With intention send this loving energy out into the world. Inhale and feel LOVE come back to you, flooding your body with light. Breathe out LOVE for all of creation. Breathe in LOVE for your soul. Continue with your breath softly and evenly. Feel your authentic self rise from within, feeling that divine presence deep in the core of your being. You are LOVE. You are the Universe experiencing itself. You are LOVE.


If we take time to practice working with our heart chakra we will begin to naturally radiate the light of unconditional LOVE. We will stop forgetting who we are and we will KNOW.

We are all love. We are one.

Namaste.

Midsummer Magic

The harvest is upon us as the days slowly shorten and we begin to prepare for cooler, darker days ahead. Yet now we are in the midst of abundance, a time of plenty as traditionally midsummer was the first harvest of the year. This is a time of gratitude for the nourishment which has been provided by Mother Earth. A time to appreciate the seeds (bija) we have planted in the fertile valleys of our mind which have come to fruition. It is a time of gathering with family and friends and breaking bread.

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In Celtic lore, the god Lugh was associated with the harvest, and a celebration bearing his name, is celebrated to this day. Lughnasadh (midsummer; August 1st), was celebrated as a harvest festival which included athletic games, ritual ceremonies, and bountiful feasts. It is celebrated today with feasting, songs and fresh baked breads and fresh picked corn can usually be found on the menu.


So many of are are blessed with abundance and have never known need or want for food, shelter, or LOVE. We can make this a time to practice gratitude for our many blessings. Break bread with friends and family; express you gratitude to someone who made a difference in your life, share your good fortune by donating time or money to a local charity, find some way to give back. Harvest time is a time of plenty and thanks.

Live simply so that others may simply live.

Ghandi

So now for some Midsummer Magic! I would like to share with you a simple Lughnasadh Chakra Clearing to help you feel the soul filling gifts of abundance and gratitude.

In case you are new to Chakras or need a refresher I am happy to oblige!


CHAKRAS

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Chakra is the Sanskrit word for “wheel.”  These “wheels” are the energy centers of the body. They are spinning vortexes of energy situated in a column along the body from the base of the spine to the crown of the head.  There are seven major chakras and each corresponds to various glands of the endocrine system and governs the energy of certain organs.  Each chakra is associated with one of the seven colors of the rainbow and seven specific musical tones (harmonic resonance). They are the embodiment of spiritual energy on the physical plane.

Energy created from emotional responses to physical stimuli run along the chakras and “feed” our cells tissues and organs. Like our unseen breath, which nourishes the body with life giving oxygen, the unseen energy we create can nourish us or deplete us. 

Try this:

                The next time you experience a strong emotion, take careful note of how your physical body responds.  Does you heart rate go up? Do you feel warmth in you arms, face etc? 

This is the emotional energy manifesting as physical sensation. Prolonged emotional responses such as anxiety will manifest physically as ulcers, headaches etc.  This is why it is important to be aware of your body’s physical, mental, emotional and spiritual states.

Having balanced, unblocked chakras, assists in keeping the rest of the body in balance. Based upon the location in the body, the chakras relate to certain states of consciousness, emotional function and philosophical constructs.  Lower chakras govern the more practical, physical aspects of our lives like survival, stability, trust; while the upper chakras govern spiritual aspects, symbols, and concepts.  Together, they provide the body-mind, physical-spiritual connection.


Midsummer Chakra Clearing

Sit comfortably and take a few deep breaths to relax yourself. Continue to breathe slowly and evenly while completing the following exercise.

Root Chakra

While visualizing the color red, say to yourself, “I am grounded, my roots grow deep absorbing the fertile life giving Earth energies.”

Sacral Chakra

Visualize the color orange and say “As Mother Nature creates this bountiful harvest, I too, create my life every day. The Universe supports my natural creative state.”

Solar Plexus Chakra

Visualize the color yellow and say “As the sun shines its life giving light, I to radiate light. My souls shines with sacred universal light and love.”

Heart Chakra

Visualize the color green and say “My heart is full of abundance. My life is full of abundance. I am part of the Universal cycle of unconditional LOVE.”

Throat Chakra

Visualize the color blue and say “I honor my voice. I nourish myself with the divine enenergies and release what no longer serves me.

Third Eye Chakra

Visualize the color indigo and say “I honor my intuition. I know I am part of something greater than myself. I am energy in form. I am abundance.”

Crown Chakra

Visualize violet light bathing you from above. You are surrounded by an ethereal radiance. You feel deeply connected to everything. Repeat to yourself “The Universe supports my BE-ing. I am LOVE.”

Take a few moments to breathe slowly and deeply, feeling yourself settle back into your body. Feel the flow of breath and the calming, balanced energies created during the meditation.


If you would like more information about Chakras or energy healing please contact me.

Blessings, Love, & Light on this bountiful Midsummer.

Namaste🙏

Passion

We tend to float through our days in a haze of to do lists, errands, work responsibilities and other tasks that typically do not ignite a passion for life. These are all things most of us must do everyday. But are they? And can we perhaps change our perspective regarding the mundane?

The older I get the more I realize Alan Watts was on point when he said “The real secret of life- to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.”

In our fast paced world we tend to see work as a burden, especially if our work has nothing to do with our talents and passions. So we then have a choice- change our view or change our job. For many of of changing careers isn’t that simple. Our jobs afford us a certain lifestyle that pursuing a field we are passionate about may not. For instance, if you are a chemical engineer but your passion is painting, you will not necessarily be able to maintain your standard of living if you suddenly quit your job to paint. Over time your skill can develop and perhaps you will earn more through your art, but upfront there are trade offs. So if we do not have the financial ability to quit our current job then we must change our perspective of work.

What if we simply start saying “I’m going to play today” instead of saying “I’m going to work today”? Sounds like fun doesn’t it? In all actuality everything we do is play (or practice). Every day we play being human but most of the time do not realize it. Being at play we lose ourselves in the moment. Do you remember playing as a child, lost in the summer sun, running though the woods? We didn’t think about deadlines or worry about what tomorrow would bring- we were fully engaged in the beauty of the moment, fully engaged in play, fully engaged in whatever our passion was at that moment. How did we lose this passion for life?

We started calling it work.

So lets change our perspective and reignite passionate living. We need to ask ourselves what we are passionate about, where do we lose ourselves completely in the moment?

If we are not passionate about our jobs, it doesn’t mean we need to quit, it means we need to view our jobs as means of pursuing our passions.

(I will mention if you are exhausted because you are working 12+ hour days and have time only for sleep etc.. then perhaps a job change is in order.)

A subtle shift in attitude towards work can have astounding impacts long term. When we no longer greet the morning with the frustration of getting up “just to go to work” and instead greet the day with awe for the adventure that awaits, we align ourselves more potently with our true nature. We are creative beings bursting with potentiality, but we have blinded ourselves with worry and fret. Each and every moment we are reborn, each and every moment we have a choice, each and every moment we can choose to let our awareness blossom and see the world anew.

Balancing Rock, Adirondacks

When we see the world around us for what it is, we open ourselves to possibility and opportunity. It is truly amazing the doors that open to us when we stop looking for them so intently. Play, instead of work, allows us to live passionately in the moment. …And isn’t that what life is truly about?

Let Passion & Play fill your days.

Namaste.

Inspired Beginnings from Bittersweet Endings

A friend sent me a message this morning, only one word, yet it changed the flow of my entire morning from a “Thank God it’s Friday” vibe to “What exciting things are just over the horizon” kind of vibe. The word: ONWARD. That’s it. One simple little word. Onward.

My response back was “I think that is the perfect theme for the coming week.” Next week is full of endings and beginnings. It is strange, (or maybe not) that as with most things in life it seems to be feast or famine. Once I started thinking about the flow of next week, I realized it is an opportunity. Instead of stressing myself out over the myriad of activities, I can allow myself some space to actually be present for what is to be a shift in my life and others. Allowing myself to experience these blissful moments.

The busyness of next week begins with the Upperclassmen Awards Ceremony at my son’s school. For seven years I have enjoyed seeing the accomplishments of these dedicated kids, and it seems too all too soon that my son, a senior, is now to be honored for his accomplishments. Yet, it is not about being honored as much as it is about what each of these amazing individuals have done over the course of years to arrive here, now. It is about who they are. This is but one moment in a lifetime of choices moving them ever onward.

Following the Awards Ceremony are auditions for the fall musical. Two weeks ago my son performed for the last time on the Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons stage and next week he will begin assisting with directing the fall show. As it was bittersweet for us to see his last performance, I am in awe of the how the program has shaped him these last six years. It is these past experiences that furthered the desire to give back to what has become his drama family. These things wouldn’t of been possible with out the people who have inspired him, one of whom is also in the midst of vast change, moving onward.

For the last six years, we have been blessed with the grace of Mr. Adam Biggs. The hats he has worn are too enumerable to list. Regardless of the hat, his actions are dedicated to the betterment of others, whether students, colleagues, or friends. He has been a role model for my son and I have had the pleasure of working along side him for 6 years. As he will be moving onward to new beginnings, Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons set the stage (pun intended!) for his future successes. I am very grateful to continue to work alongside Adam with the NDBG drama program even though he is moving onward to St. Thomas the Apostle School.

In addition to the new beginning’s of our beloved drama program next week, it is also High School Graduation. Once the honors are presented and the accolades given, I expect a brief ebb in the energy that has infused these last few weeks. All of the effort and hard work for this part of the journey is complete, as the young adults receive their diplomas next Saturday, their dedication to strive for excellence in High School sets the stage for their future endeavors; the past moving us all ever onward.

“The past is but the beginning of a beginning, and all that ever is and has been is but the twilight of the dawn.” ~H.G. Wells

Onward, my friends.


I want to thank Paul O’Brien for his one word message this morning. Amazing what a simple word can do at the right moment.

Paul is the former English Department Chair at NDBG and an author. His books, such as “Keys on the Road: A Country Boy’s Memories” can be found at The Open Door book store on Jay Street in Schenectady.

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Creativity

I have been MIA for sometime now because it was theater season at my son’s school. As this was his last performance on his high school stage, it has been a bittersweet couple of months. As always the show was fantastic. The kids are a pleasure to work with and the creativity found on our little stage is amazing.

I have been blessed to work along side so many talented people these last six years. The vision and hard work that goes into a high school musical production is tremendous. During the months of set work and rehearsals, I do not engage in any other creative pursuit. This demands my full attention, yet it is thoroughly meditative.

Set work is one of many outlets for the need to create. This need is the burden of the creative soul.

The creative force is as inspiring as it is maddening. It is a driving passion, a single minded focus. All other thoughts become dampened or drowned out. An inexplicable force exerting itself like some unwieldy caged beast, gnawing relentlessly to be let out.

The creative process can be as frustrating as it is joyful. Like writer’s block, I get artistic block, usually from trying to force the process. Creativity is a flow. We have to allow ourselves to relax, to find (mental) space in order to bring forth new constructs or allow new insights into problems that arise. This is true with any creative pursuit. It is that moment when we let go of the outcome that our creative nature can truly shine. When we create for the joy of the process we touch the infinite, we exist in the moment.

This isn’t to say there is no planning involved. Regardless of the form of creative expression, certain steps are necessary to foster a state of flow. For example, with set design, before any plans are made the script is read. From the individual scenes within the acts, subtle nuances are noticed and provide insight into how the characters interact with the stage, props and audience. The show in its entirety, must have a proper sense of flow in order to engage the audience.

I am grateful to be one small piece of this amazing process. The joy is not only in the culmination of the hard work and long hours experienced by everyone involved, but within the work itself. As the Cowardly Lion said “There is joy in honest labor.” As always, these shows are a labor of LOVE.