Navaratri

Today, October 8th, begins the celebrated Vedic tradition of connection to the Divine, in the feminine aspect or Goddess. For 9 days, a portal opens, where intentions for transformation and growth are magnified. During these 9 days it is encouraged to devote your time and energy to a practice that connects you deeper to Source.

This tradition comes from the Vedas, where Source is seen as the Goddess, the Divine Mother. In each third of the 9 days a particular aspect of the Divine feminine is recognized-from the destroyer of fears & suffering (Durga) to the bringer of wealth and vitality (Maha Lakshmi) to knowledge and creativity (Saraswati)- and is honored.

For yoga practitioners, reading vedic scriptures and learning about the aspects of the Divine not only support internal transformation but deepen one’s perspective, or understanding of the nature of cosmic energy. Yoga is ‘hot’ these days, contorting the body to get all sweaty and look good…but the true yoga is when the blockages are cleared and the nature of our Self is revealed. This self is connected to the Divine, is Divine…and through practice (sadhana) this is discovered.

Yoga is the path, or the practice of becoming one with the Divine.

If you have a mantra practice or a perhaps meditation/asana & kriya that you already do, continue what you are doing but perhaps with more reverence & inspiration. Offer your practice to the Divine energies that support your transformation in releasing fears & suffering so that health, wealth and creativity can flow in.

If you do not already have a practice–no worries! Create one that feels good. Here is an example:

1. Go to a field or look around your yard for some wildflowers to offer to the Divine Mother ( or divine energies/aspects that you wish to cultivate in you.) Yellow goldenrod is growing everywhere now..& is also a flower that protects one from ragweed pollen (which may be up your nose right now causing ‘head cold’ symptoms). Marigolds, roses and mums are also everywhere.

2. After offering some flowers or fruits (apples are also in season!!) Light a candle…set an intention. This could be for more ease in your life–less stress and worry.

3. Perhaps open the body with some asana, or poses that both stretch and vitalize you.

4. Sit. Be aware of your breath. Now is the time to do some Pranayama (breath control) and this can be as simple as letting the belly soften to fill as you inhale, and then gently drawing the belly in as you exhale (abdominal breathing).

5. Add Mantra: So Hum is a beautiful beginning mantra. The ancient yogis seated in caves of the Himalayas heard the breath as So Hum…Inhaling ‘so’ Exhaling ‘hum’. This breath means ‘I am That’ (loosely defined) I am that infinite source, or fabric of consciousness that creates, connects and transforms all things. I am Divine.

Or be creative. Yoga is a process, a union…and today is just a beginning..Happy Navaratri! Happy New Moon!

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