Laying Burdens Down
One of the upsides of moving our studio online during the pandemic is daily connection with Lori Gale. A dedicated and thoughtful practitioner, as well as a certified Kundalini Yoga teacher, she shares here part of her journey with MKY. Thank you, Lori, for sharing your heart and your Truth. Thank you for bringing your energy, your devotion, your kindness, your everything to our community day after day. It means the world!
In the before times, I could only make it to MKY one Sunday a month. I was living over 30 miles away, had a demanding job, etc., etc. But what a treat to have Cate as a teacher and to be in community with the other students on those special Sundays. “Let the truth in you guide you” is the heart of why I love Kundalini yoga, and Cate makes this come alive in every class. I signed up right away when I learned that MKY would be offering online classes and moon ceremonies.
My first new moon intention of 2020 was to release pain and stiffness in my neck and shoulders. Daily yoga was helping, but this pain was very stubborn. I have come to understand that pain in this location is often the result of feeling overly responsible, as if one is carrying the weight of the world. This certainly describes me, having been a single parent, taking care of a big house on my own, and being in a profession where mistakes could kill people. But now that I have downsized my home and retired from structural engineering, it was time to lay these burdens down.
With the help of our beautiful yoga practice along with Cate and Savitri’s new moon remote Reiki, the physical pain has completely disappeared. It feels great to be able to move freely again, but I continued to be haunted by memories of a bullying situation in my former workplace. Numerous times each day I would find myself engaged in churning thoughts of passive aggressive revenge. I knew I needed to forgive and move on, but the thoughts would not go away. I asked my intuition for guidance, and finally it came during a recent class with Savitri.
Savitri is an amazing healer with a wonderful way of sharing her deep spiritual knowledge. In each class, she lovingly expands on a spiritual topic while the students are doing the asanas. We learn about different spiritual beings, the various types of chi, practices around the world, water, trees, essential oils, fasting, and even coffee. One day Savitri talked about the importance of respecting and integrating our emotions, and it occurred to me to wonder what my emotions really were concerning my workplace bully. As I pondered, the strongest feelings to emerge were shame and embarrassment for letting myself be treated that way, and suddenly I realized that I had never fully let myself feel the shock and terror of being yelled at by someone at work. Recognizing that these were my true emotions felt like a huge thing that needed to come out, almost like having a baby.
When Savitri invited the class to locate the emotions in the body, I could feel them deep below my navel center and could sense another knot of similar emotions in the same location. These were from being bullied as a kid, which happened often because my family moved a lot. In this case too, shame and embarrassment covered up the real hurt. Amazingly there was now a path for all that pain to release, and I lay in shavasana thinking, “whoa, what just happened?” I know there was a deep shift because now I can see that the negative thoughts are just my monkey mind trying to help. I don’t need to engage with them anymore. What a relief!
I am incredibly grateful to all the MKY teachers and students for creating a welcoming and supportive space where we can give and receive the enormous benefits of Kundalini yoga. It has been so great to practice with everyone. Thank you very much! Wahe guru!
Blood Moon Eclipse by Savitri Kaur
Tonight's turbo-charged, wolf howling, full blood moon lunar eclipse promises to bring a crescendo to whatever is most important in our lives. The Leo season makes us want to shine, to show off and actualize our potential. But the blood moon urges us to look backwards instead, at the burdens we insist on carrying around with us from the past that no longer serve our higher self.
Knowing this, I yearn to use this eclipse to finally move into my home. As some of you know, last year I experienced the devastation of a house fire. My home burned down, and we rebuilt from scratch. (All living creatures were unharmed. Even my turtles survived.)
I haven't really moved into the new home. I've been sidetracked by still more disasters, so my belongings wait patiently inside hastily packed boxes that can't mask the sickening stench of smoke from the salvaged items inside. I must go through each treasured belonging to decide what to keep. Grim and dirty work, but it's got to get done. With my few hours off work though, I'd rather do a load of wash, or meditate in front of my altar.
Most of all, I long to design a shiny new yoga program for aspirants at MKY. But with no real home base beneath me, my radiant dreams remain embryonic.
Astrologers agree that this lunar eclipse in Aquarius is completely idealistic. Yet its Shangri-La expectations are frustrated by the earthly, domestic concerns that now influence the moon's energy. This perfectly describes my own frustrated emotions: I want to fly so high, but too much needless ballast weighs me down. Whatever we've been resisting or holding back is now pushing violently to the surface. We are called to make a sacrifice, to forgo our magical thinking and clean up our messes. Astrologers urge us to be with our feelings right now, understand what they are bringing up to be looked at and dealt with. We must face our inner demons, and my demons are hunkered down inside boxes, badly in need of a bath -- loitering, unemployed sentries, waiting for their next tour of duty.
We are also now on the eclipse's razor edge of Mar's rebellious fury. Time to reign in our egos, so magnified by the proud majesty of the Leo sun. We want to be careful what we say and avoid emotional outbursts that we may regret later. The moon rules our emotions and Mars rules our passion, so relationships with people, places and things we love are super charged. Thankfully, the structuring effect of Saturn will hopefully lead us into a mature and productive channeling of this fiery force.
So now to deal with the outcome of my own fire; feelings of loss and sadness, the senseless attachment to things I no longer need, all the ways I avoid the unpleasant tasks that need to get done. What kind of truly powerful life might I lead if I stop avoiding?
Intense transformation rules this time. This blood moon eclipse gives us the opportunity to completely drop our baggage, to volcanically purge and clear all that no longer serves us. Doing this fully promises to bring abundant reward.
So I open the first box, my senses are accosted with the smoky remnants of the fire. My heart jumps with delight as I lift out my beloved stuffed dragon, Raj, who used to sit atop my quartz crystal collection. His red flanks are darkened from the smoke, his once proud whiskers are covered in ash. I’m instantly reminded of the most frightening day of my life. Along with a sense of anguish, I also relive all the smiles Raj brought me and thank him for his decades of service. My hand trembles slightly as I place him carefully inside the garbage bag.
What is rising to the surface for you? Please let us know in the comments below. Let's move through the challenges together.
Savitri's path of right living centers around the spiritual upliftment of each person she encounters. As a Yoga teacher, Savitri brings the potency of over thirty years of spiritual study and practice, including meditation, in-depth study of Tai Chi, Chi Kung and other martial arts, as well as her certified expertise in Kundalini Yoga & Shakti Dance™. Savitri transmits her passion, joy and commitment to truth through these Raj (royal) yogas, which enliven and empower all who attend her classes, workshops and retreats. Join Savitri on Wednesday and Friday nights for Kundalini Yoga with Sound Healing and on Saturday mornings for Kundalini Yoga & Meditation.