Posts Tagged With: Yoga

OM

So I was thinking about that word everybody chants when they are meditating or doing yoga. You know the one,

ommmmmmmmmmm

Yoga

There’s a YouTube yoga video that I like in which the instructor tells viewers to chant the word silently three times, which I think is pretty interesting (chanting silently). I tried doing that when I woke up in the middle of the night one night.  I woke up, and of course immediately started thinking about a kazillion different things, so it soon became impossible to get back to sleep. I tried chanting silently, and before long I was able to ignore the thoughts racing around in my head, and eventually I fell back asleep. It’s a great trick.

So where did “om” come from? I looked it up and found out that OM is a mystical Hindu word, used as a sacred incantation expressed at the beginning and end of any reading of the Vedas (an ancient sacred text) or before any prayer or mantra. The Hindus believe that when Creation began, the Divine, all-encompassing consciousness took the form of the first, original vibration, manifesting as the sound OM (AUM). So the vibration of OM actually symbolizes the manifestation of God in form.

OM

OM

OM is made up of three different sounds which represent:

  1. Brahma, or creation – the A (A-kāra)
  2. Vishnu, or preservation, – the U (U-kāra) and
  3. Shiva, or liberation/destruction -the M (Ma-kāra)

A-kāra means form or shape, like earth, trees, or any other object. U-kāra means formlessness or shapelessness, like water, air or fire. Ma-kāra means neither shape nor shapelessness (but still existing), like the dark energy content of the Universe. Letter by letter, A-U-M represents the Divine entity united in its three elementary aspects.

So the next time you are in yoga class – or you just feel like chanting – you will know the meaning behind what you are doing when you use the word OM….. you are affirming the Divine presence in the universe. And for further instruction on how to pronounce the word, go here. And to experience the power of the chant, check out this video. I love what one person said in the comments: “I think one needs the full arsenal of east and west philosophies and practices to live this life with any kind of quality.”

Amen.

Categories: Think About it | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Connecting With Your Creative Muse

I am an “idea” person. Always have been. Always will be.

I come up with ideas all the time. My big problem is following through on them. Making them happen.

For example, I have been juggling a few book ideas in my head the past weeks.  I’ve started two and started research on the third.

Today I started thinking about a completely different book. I need my Muse to FOCUS!

Hesiod and the Muse

Hesiod and the Muse (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So I dug through some old articles and came across just the one to help me get in the groove again. I thought I’d share….

Five Inner Feng Shui Tips for Connecting with your Inner Muse

1. Learn from Yoga: in yoga the restorative poses are the most difficult. Why? They’re the ones where it looks like you’re doing nothing. You may be lying with your butt against the wall with your legs up the wall. You may be folded over a bolster with your head touching your knees. And you stay like that for many minutes. They’re the hardest because you’re so used to being busy and doing something.

It takes a certain stillness to discover what’s wanting to be expressed.

To connect with your muse and restore your SELF takes being present, being in your body and just being. And this is a scary thing for most of us. It’s the stillness. “Shouldn’t you be doing something?” the voices scream.

Action Step: Start small. Take some time to ‘be.’ Thinking, day dreaming, doodling – they are all part of the creative process and will start exercising that creative muscle. Discover what you’re thinking and feeling. Just for you. Schedule it if you need to!

2. Create a Sacred Space: There is a reason both children and creativity come together in the Children & Creativity Gua. (To see where this area is in your home, read this.) This area is where one can go about birthing the self. It’s about play and joy and being an artist – all those things children naturally are until they’re told what to think. And then years later, even in a creative business, they search for fulfillment in the midst of busyness, having forgotten where their creativity really lives. If you had the perfect environment to create in, what would it look like? What would it feel like? What would inspire you? What would you surround yourself with? Remember, it can be however you wish. Write or draw how it would be.

Action Step: Whether you have a whole room or a small part of a room, take the essence of what you dreamed up for your sacred space and add it to your space. Perhaps a candle, an inspiring photo, your favorite mug, a clear table top, a comfortable chair and cozy blanket. Whatever nurtures that playful, curious, imagination of yours.

***A great enhancement for the Children & Creativity area of your home (or part of a room) is a child’s drawing or painting. ***

3. Remove Distractions.

What’s distracting you? Commitments you wish you hadn’t made? Too many trips to the supermarket because you’re not as organized as you could be? People who deplete your energy? Checking e-mails a million times a day? Too much clutter? List five distractions in your life.

What would you have the time, energy and space for if these were gone? Nurturing your creativity is way more important than doing something that drains your energy. Your creative muse is calling you.

Action Step: Today, choose one distraction and handle it. Now, take the time it frees up, to ‘be’- whether in nature, sitting in your sacred space or grabbing a pen or your laptop and writing whatever comes to mind.

4. Remove Clutter: The Children & Creativity area is the one area where clutter is allowed – but I’m talking about the kind of clutter that comes from having all your creative materials around you to mess with. They can be disorganized and messy  but if that inspires you to create then it’s okay.

However, there’s another type of clutter which is what you may be more used to – papers, things from the past, disorganized chaos when things aren’t where they belong, a desk that’s full of books, even creative materials that sit unused for weeks or months on end. If you’re surrounded by clutter, you can’t even think clearly, let alone tap into that deep part of you that’s tender and raw and just waiting to come out.

Fast Action Step: No need to wait. Get a box and scoop up everything on your desk, or in your sacred space – temporarily. This gives you a clear space to call on your muse, to discover what you’re waiting to say. That’s what’s important. Then later go through the box and save what you love and chuck the rest. No need to do the whole room right now – that’s a great way to sabotage yourself.

5. Act like a child: Children play, they mess around, they dream, their imaginations run wild, they’re curious. Children know they’re creative….they’re writers, they’re artists. And that’s how it is.

It’s the rest of us who need reminding. We’ve forgotten how to play, and forgotten that what makes us unique is the thing we’re here to express.

“Two boys arrived yesterday with a pebble they said was the head of a dog until I pointed out that really it was a typewriter.” — Pablo Picasso

Action Step: Spend time with a child. See the world from their view. Take 10 minutes to walk a few feet, looking at every little bug along the way. Be curious and open up to the world you may have forgotten in your busy, adult life.

Connect with your creative muse and you’ll be nourishing a deep part of yourself. As a bonus, the creativity you use in your work with others will be enhanced. You may even find that you’ll boost the bottom line in your business.

(Adapted from an article by Vicky White ©Copyright 2009 Life Design Strategies)

Here is another great post on cultivating creativity: http://www.karanbajaj.com/writing-creativity/5-ways-to-become-more-creative/

So tell me, how do YOU connect with your creative muse? Please share your thoughts.

Categories: Feng Shui, Writing | Tags: , , , , | 11 Comments

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