I am most content in Nature, be it mountains or fields, in these places I have a sense of connection, of suchness that eludes me in trappings of concrete and steel. When I am able to spend even brief moments in the bounty of the earth, I am reborn, refreshed and deeply content.
I recently stumbled across the writings of Wendell Berry, a man of “suchness” and I think this quote from his essay “A Native Hill” captures the essence of the lightness and depth one feel’s amidst Nature’s verdant realms.
“And so I go to the woods. As I go in under the trees, dependably, almost at once, and by nothing I do, things fall into place. I enter an order that does not exist outside, in the human spaces. I feel my life take its place among the lives-the trees, the annual plants, the animals and birds, the living of all these and the dead-that go and have gone to make the life of the earth.
“I am less important than I thought, the human race is less important than I thought. I rejoice in that. My mind loses its urgings, senses its nature and is free.”
~Wendell Berry, A Native Hill
Prior to Covid, I taught a workshop on creating sacred space at local yoga studios. The Sacred Space Wellness Workshop was a delight to teach. Both the participants and myself typically left the workshop feeling a bit lighter and perhaps a bit wiser. As usually happens during these classes, topics suddenly change and we find ourselves in uncharted waters. The spontaneity of conversation is beautiful. It allows us to discover new ideas, new interests and hopefully we find a little peace. I miss the in-person workshops, as I feel they provided deeper connection and insight. However, I am grateful to still be able to share the content of the workshop through social media outlets.
Those who have participated in the past and shared not only their time, but their sacred experiences as well, and I am ever grateful. When we open ourselves to other points of view, realizing everyone is on their own path, we there by allow ourselves more space to experience life as it is in the moment. Below you will find some of the information presented in the workshops. As always you are welcome to contact me with any questions or comments. I wish you peace and blissful awareness in every moment.
Be sure to always physically clean the area prior to performing an energy cleanse. You should be in the proper state of mind also. Some meditation, yoga, chanting or other activity which brings about a sense of flow, as to not infuse the area with any residual personal energy. Get creative if you’d like and perform a personal ritual cleansing prior to clearing your space. Take a bath with oils, mindfully drink a cup of tea, and immerse yourself in the moment. Remember your intuition. If you suddenly feel like praying or chanting, go with it. Our inner knowingness guides us far better than we believe. As you light what it is you will burn, have your intention clearly in your mind.
Bay Leaves ~ Used for thousands of years for beneficial respiratory affects. Reduces anxiety and increases sense of peace. Burn in ash tray, do not inhale smoke directly.
Sage ~ Probably the most well-known spiritual cleanser, sage smudging will cleanse your space and your aura. Sage has been used for thousands of year by Native Americans for a myriad of ritual purposes. The sage smoke is said to absorb detrimental energies, anger, and even illness. If using a sage wand, you may want to repeat a blessing at each door and/or window and heavy traffic areas. A blessing such as “May all who enter find peace within these walls, May my dwelling be a sanctuary of love, May all who exit leave with a peaceful heart and tranquil soul.”
Frankincense ~ According to the ancient Indian practice of Ayurveda, frankincense brings good health when burned every day. The Roman Catholic Church has been using frankincense for centuries to ward off evil. Frankincense has anti-inflammatory properties as well as aromatically relieving stress and depression. A bath with frankincense oil is said to relieve menstrual cramps.
Palo Santo ~ The Spanish name “palo santo” means Holy Wood. It has been used to treat headaches, depression, anxiety and cold symptoms. It is also used for energetic cleansing and the removal of evil spirits. It was considered sacred by the Incan’s and used as medicine.
Selenite ~ Clears and activates the third eye and crown chakras. Purifies the auric field while expanding awareness of higher realms. Selenite amplifies the vibrational energies of other crystals.
Peacock Feathers ~ Spiritual awakening and renewal. The eyes on the feathers symbolically represent the knowledge of the heavens, reminding us to seek inward for “the kingdom of heaven is within.”
Copper ~ Works well to facilitate spiritual energies between the root and heart chakras. Balances physical body and provides the connection between the physical and spiritual energies.
Meditation, Mantras, and Devotionals
To meditate is defined as to think or focus deeply for a period of time in silence or with the aid of chanting, for religious or spiritual purposes or as a method of relaxation. ~From google.
Relying strictly on definitive definitions for meditation can lead to stress while trying to meditate. This can lead to thoughts of “I’m not doing it right” or “I can’t clear my mind.” One should not have a goal while meditating. Just sit comfortably and focus on your breath. Feel the air flow in through your nose, down your throat and fill your lungs. Exhale slowly, deeply, being sure to expel all of the air from your lungs. If your mind drifts, it’s ok, just guide it back to your breath. Allow thoughts to float by like clouds on the sky. Inhale slowly, deeply feel your lungs expand. Pause. Exhale, slowly, deeply releasing your belly first then, rib cage, then chest. Once you become comfortable with following your breath, you may want to repeat a mantra aloud or silently. Mantras, like the breath are used as a focusing point, a tool to begin to know yourself better.
Devotionals are generally mediation, prayers, or mantras directed towards a specific religious practice, saint or god. For example, “Om Namo Ganeshaya” is a mantra for the Hindu God Ganesha. This mantra is used when beginning a new project or a new start in life to help remove obstacles and find success. Each of these are tools, simple ways of teaching yourself to slow your thoughts, be more mindful and peaceful.
Awakening the 5 Senses
When selecting items for your sacred space, keep in mind the 5 senses. We too often take our senses for granted. Practicing a sensory meditation is a good way to get back in touch with yourself and how you perceive the world. Below are suggestions for bringing awareness to the senses through sacred space.
Sight ~ objects that foster a sense of inner peace, colors.
Sound ~ Bells, Tibetan Singing Bowls, and music.
Touch ~ Mala or prayer beads, rosary, stones, coins.
Taste ~ during purification prior to beginning drink tea or mindfully eat a piece of fruit.
Smell ~ natural chemical free candle, incense, oil diffuser, or any of the above items.
We have been blessed with the gifts of sight, taste, touch, hearing, and smell, yet most of us do not take the time to experience these sensations. You will find that your practice will flow into your daily routine. Drinking coffee or driving to work can potentially become a sacred experiences.
When we have dedicated space for our spiritual practices, we tend to practice more. When we practice (yoga, meditation, Reiki etc.) more consistently, we begin to bring more stillness, more time for quiet contemplation into our lives, magic happens! We become less anxious, less concerned with outcomes; and a desire to life authentically arises and everything becomess a sacred experience.
If you would like to know more or set up a free consultation on creating sacred space, please contact me!