I’ve just returned from a road trip through the Southwest with my sweetie. We traveled through New Mexico and Colorado as we stopped to soak in healing waters and bathe in luminous rays, surrounded by the natural world! It was a mellow getaway spent with family and friends, and I am so grateful to have the opportunity to do so. You could say that I spent my time on vacation “receiving”.
The Balance of Give and Receive is SO important for the greater enjoyment, ease, and fulfillment of our lives on Earth. These two opposing (but complementary) energies can be witnessed and experienced simply as what we put out into the world and also what we take from the world.
You may also interpret Give/Receive as the Masculine and Feminineenergies that exist within and without, above and below. Within us, we have this represented by the seemingly symmetrical sides of our Earth-Bodies. Our right side is our Masculine side – which I describe as active, outward, exertion, ascending, and giving. Our left side is our Feminine side – which I describe as passive, inward, healing, descending, and receiving. You may also interpret this through the spirit of Mother Earth below and the spirit of Father Sky above. Mother Earth is the ultimate representation of the Feminine, and Father Sky is the Masculine. Together they form two halves of one greater whole, much like our Earth-Bodies. In Chinese Philosophy, what I speak of here is widely known as the balance of Yin and Yang.
This balance occurs in every breath – your inhale meets your exhale, which then meets your inhale as the cycle begins again and again. Your inhale needs your exhale (and visa versa) to be a complete breath. Light and Dark, Sun and Moon, Earth and Sky, Strength and Surrender, Fire and Water… there are endless examples of the harmonizing opposition of Give and Receive.
Perhaps you feel called to one side versus the other. Perhaps you are more likely to Give rather than Receive or Receive rather than Give. Perhaps you spend your days in action, moving from inward to outward rather than resting, moving outward to inward. Or perhaps it is the opposite.
HOME PRACTICE: Have no judgment, resistance, or attachment as you engage in any of the following practices (contemplation, meditation, shamanic journey, yoga, dance, walk, journal, etc.) that feels like a match for YOU to gain clarity. Hold the clear intention in your heart space to discover how you are in relation with Give and Receive, and be open to experience your own inner wisdom. Perhaps you may even come to a revelation of how to gain greater balance of these two energies in your Life, because we certainly need both!
We as humans are always striving to find balance. This appears fundamentally when we become tired or feel energized, become hungry or feel full, or even when we are sweating or have the chills. Balance is always something that we are reaching for physically, energetically, emotionally, mentally, and even spiritually. This occurs every day, every hour, every minute – whether we are aware of it or not. There is also great wisdom to be said in that there is NO true, concrete place of balance! We are always ebbing and flowing at every moment to “find” it. If we can bring in more AWARENESS around what we need to “work on”, it will act as a powerful ally on our journey closer.
When in “right” relation with Give AND Receive, we will experience Life as truly satisfied, wholesome, and healthy beings! We are on our path towards it <3
Recently I attended a beautiful Sound Healing where I set intentions to be open to receive any healing messages for myself, for those I love, for the greatest good of our planet, and for the greatest benefit of Life on Earth. My promise that evening was to act as a completely open vessel for truth, sight, love, and energy. It is also a very good reminder that we always have the ability to receive guidance from our helpers in the “unseen” worlds. With my intention, the messages certainly came through!
“Float, Don’t Fight. Think,
This was one of many that came
through that evening from Helping Spirits like Bear, the Elemental
Spirit of Water, and even Celestial Beings like Angels.
These Spirits are wanting to help provide a greater sense of ease on Earth as
they assist us during this intense time of transition, evolution, and change.
We can interpret this time personally within ourselves, outwardly in our
relationships, and even globally throughout the world.
on Earth is certainly a beautiful miracle, but it does come with conditional
challenges, waves, and cycles. As I have spoken about previously, Life is
not linear. Over the past month, and specifically in the last week, it has
become very clear to me that we are all riding the waves of our emotions
and of our lives.
is up to us if we choose to float with the current, fight against the motion,
or sink into the depths.
In the Native traditions that I have studied and intuited, West and Water andBear are all united. West is the place where the sun sets every evening, promising us a chance to rest in darkness and renew in peace. The blackness of the sky is subtly illuminated by the nightlight of the moon and stars. This provides us a time to sleep, to recover, and to even shine glimmers of light on karmic patterns/beliefs/stories that are no longer encouraging the coming dawn of the next day – aka our Path/Purpose/Future in Life. Water as an Elemental offers us the potential to rejuvenate, cleanse, and wash away what is not in alignment with our true Self. Bear as the Spirit Guardian of the West provides us with the promise of the natural cycle of hibernation and reflection. Bear promises us a chance to go within to rest and heal, while also being protected, nurtured, and held safe while doing so. Perhaps you can feel for yourself how interconnected the “medicine” (or the teachings) of these are.
I saw clearly, and I feel
strongly, that this is playing out right now within us and all around us.
is profound opportunity and potential for the closure and finalized healing of
certain dated ways of living and being that no longer serve our coming
These karmic bonds are being
loosened and are asking for our awareness and acceptance in order to fully heal
and close the cycle. During this process, there is potential for the opening of
new doors and ways to shine our intrinsic Lights, all while staying grounded
and rooted as humans of Earth. We have the ability to free ourselves from our
pasts and create opportunities for our future, if we are willing to bring
awareness around the ways that we may have encouraged those patterns to
play out in our Lives until now.
We CAN clear and
release karmic cycles, IF we allow ourselves the permission to ride the waves of our
emotions, express how we feel, and ultimately trust in the flow that is always
carrying us through.
Water wants to help us do this. As an ally, water can indefinitely guide us into a place of authentic truth, fluidity, and clear expression of who we are, how we feel, and what we are here to “do”.
We are aligning so that we may ride the waves of our lives in a more compassionate, balanced, and harmonious way with not only ourselves, but also with each other and the greater Mother Earth.
Home Practice: Working with Water
*Bring awareness around water’s
abilities while you are washing your hands, doing dishes, cleaning laundry, showering,
gratitude for and mindfulness towards the water you drink and interact with
*Honor the waters of the Earth and Sky. Spend time next to a local body of water/stream or collect fresh rain water outside – keep it in a special place in your home to remind you of the fluidity and help you are receiving!
*Take a rejuvenating Salt Bath. Epson/Mineral Salt combined with hot water in a bath helps to universally cleanse Mind, Body, & Spirit in an enjoyable and ease-filled way. Add essential oils or light candles to continue to create a healing space for yourself. I also like to call in healing energy from my Guides to help do this. Make it what you want! You may also want to try out this incantation: Speak out loud with conviction “Into the water and down the drain, goes all my worries, goes all my pain.” while you are exiting the bath, watching the water go down the drain. Repeat at least 3 times. Notice how you feel after!
*Listen to your intuition and respect how
YOU are guided to work with Water!
Your belly is the space between your chest and your pelvis. Your pelvis begins where your belly ends as the lower portion of the trunk of the human body. Your abdomen (otherwise known as the “belly” or “gut”) is home to your digestive organs. Your pelvis (otherwise known as the “hips”) is home to your reproductive organs. These areas together hold great influence over the functions and systems of the connected Body and Mind.
We know there are millions of neurons in the gut that directly influence our mood, behavior, and perceivable experiences. This mesh of neurons is called the enteric nervous system (ENS) and can operate largely on its own, independent from the brain or spinal cord. Because of this, the gut (ENS) is frequently referred to as the “second brain”.
The gut is also home to bacteria and other mircroorganisms intrinsic to our health and our susceptibility to disease. To encourage a healthy and balanced gut flora, it is essential (but sometimes not the most convenient) to eat a wholesome, clean diet. If we have a “happy” gut with a healthy array of bacteria – our overall mood, health, and vitality will correlate and reflect that. If we do not, we will surely feel the residue of an unhappy belly throughout the web of ourBody and Mind. A belly without diverse bacteria may cause a long list of digestive issues, autoimmune disorders, pain conditions, skin irritations, nutrient malabsorption, and may even affect the brain with fatigue, depression, anxiety, mood/behavioral disorders, and more.
We feel feedback and sensations (satiation, bloat, hunger, pain, anxiety, etc.) in our gut in response to the quality and amount of food we eat or don’t eat; we also feel sensations because of a variety of external stimuli. We may remember experiencing a “gut response” to a specific event or situation in the past – a “gut response” that was subtle or perhaps significant and created an inner feeling orpresence in the belly. The “gut response” may show up as butterflies, knots, turning upside down, or even just feeling really relaxed and calmed. The belly and the brain are constantly communicating in this way with each other mostly through the intelligent pathway of the vagus nerve, which carries the parasympathetic response to vital organs and muscles in the Body. Basic ways to strengthen and improve this connection involve yoga, deep breathing, “cold blasting”, and maintaining a healthy gut flora.
The same general concept goes for the pelvis, as well. Women will be affected by the enjoyment of their menstrual cycles just as much as both men and women will be affected by the health and regularity of their bowel movements. It is important for men and woman alike to hold a neutral pelvis while performing daily activities (instead of tilting too far forward arching the low back or tilting too far backward slouching the spine) because it acts as the foundation. The everyday alignment of the pelvis will directly impact the sensations in the hips, back, and neck. I predict we would experience lower pain and discomfort of these areas if we practiced and embodied a natural, neutral alignment.
We have all experienced how the difference of pain to pleasure in these areas impact our overall well-being and Life satisfaction.
So…what does all of this mean?
We have spoken about the Body/Mind relating to the Belly/Pelvis, but what about the connection to Spirit? Energetically, I see the seam where the belly meets the pelvis as the central point of gravity in the human body, where the essential connection to Mother Earthbelow is first established and harnessed within. We can feel and cultivate how connected we are with the Earth through the spaces in the belly, the pelvis, and even stemming further down into the legs and the feet. In my yoga classes and workshops, I always speak to the pelvis, the pelvic floor, the pelvic bowl, the belly, the core, the legs, and the feet to increase our inner-awareness of these parts by activating them and also by consciously groundingthe energy down.
If we are too tight or restricted in our Belly/Pelvis, we will not only have a hard time grounding down energetically, but we will also physically through difficulties eliminating waste. We may also suffer from fulfillment sexually if we are too restricted or blocked in this area; in severe cases, this may even show up as abdominal pain or pelvic pain.
It is natural in some occasions for the body to hold onto heavy amounts of stress, trauma, and tucked-down-and-away-never-to-be-felt-again emotions in the Belly and Pelvis. These emotional blocks have direct influence over our physical health.
Alternatively, if we aretoo open or loosein our belly/pelvis, we may feel quite sluggish or lazy. We may also feel unable to engage our core and our pelvic floor properly; this may lead physically to incontinence and energetically/emotionally to over-consuming sexual urges or food cravings.
It is also natural to have desires.
But, for optimal health and healing, balance is a necessity.
In Tantric traditions, your belly and pelvis inhabit the first 2 Chakras (energy centers) of your body. Your 1st Chakra (Root Chakra) is in your pelvis (located at the base of the spine in the perineum) and is your place of stability and safety. Your 2nd Chakra (Sacral Chakra) is in between your lower abdomen and lower back (located a few inches under the belly button) and is your place of sexuality, emotions, and desires. The element that relates to the Root Chakra is Earth (grounded, strong, solid), and the element that relates to the Sacral Chakra is Water(fluid, flowing, flexible).
You can feel how fundamental these two centers of the body are in order for us to continue to heal and evolve and grow.
So…how do I embody a healthy, balanced Belly & Pelvis?
You must first learn how to engage AND release these areas.
I find it is so important for humans to learn how to use the muscles of their core/pelvis and then learn how to let them go. You can experiment yourself with these actions through specific exercises to engage, then perform meditations/massages to release – feeling the polarity of these two extremes and resting somewhere in the everyday neutral, soft but strong.
I find it is also very important to seek out energetic and spiritual support to help find balance and healing from either extreme.
Everything that shows up physically has a spiritual correlation.
Shamanically, I treat and encourage the healing of the spiritual illness – the root of the illness at the very subtle layers of Self.
For those of you who know me personally, know that I am deeply connected to this area of the body because of my own in-depth experiences and healing journey. The unveiling of pelvic pain and its many layers has played a big part of my Soul Path and Soul Purpose since day 1. It has bestowed infinite wisdom on me that I would not have received otherwise. It has opened doors and propelled me on a vast and humble path of being in service to Spirit, the Greatest Good, and the Highest Truth.
I feel blessed to even write this today.
Your Belly and your Pelvis together hold ancient, primal wisdom that once unlocked, can impact the trajectory of your Life – of your Health, of your Healing, and of your entire Well-being!
Aho – So be it! <3
With Love Always,
Surrender to Soul Wellness
Owner, Yoga Teacher, Chef, Shamanic Energy Healer
For more access to: tools that aid in the Health, Healing, and Richness of your LifeORmore information onIntuitive Divine Love Healings (in person or long distance), visit my website here.
There are countless ways to practice with the Medicine Wheel. I do encourage an intuitive approach when working with spiritual symbolism, as we will all take something different from it. Trust your gut on how the medicine of the Wheel wants to work with/through you. Do not force, let this be a beautiful evolution (the evolution is part of the teaching, too! 😊).
Below I provide you with a simple Incantation to speak clearly to call upon the energies of the Wheel. You may face each direction as you go through the Incantation. It is important to note that you must embody a reverence for the Spirits (Energies) of the Wheel as you go through this practice. After, you may wish to dance or sing or free-write to soften the mind and let the energies of the Universe move through you. Notice how and what you feel. Remain open to receive the energies. (You may also choose to draw the Wheel, meditate on the Wheel as a whole, or meditate on a specific section/animal/element/etc.) In Shamanism, there are no rules to what is right or wrong. How liberating! Enjoy.
“With respect and honoring, I welcome and call upon the Spirits of the East. I invite your powers and wisdoms to bring me clarity, perspective, intuition, and new beginnings.
With respect and honoring, I welcome and call upon the Spirits of the South. I invite your powers and wisdoms to bring me passion, determination, perseverance, and playfulness.
With respect and honoring, I welcome and call upon the Spirits of the West. I invite your powers and wisdoms to bring me renewal, rejuvenation, fluidity, and acceptance of the dark.
With respect and honoring, I welcome and call upon the Spirits of the North to bring me home. I invite your powers and wisdoms to bring me the knowledge, the abundance, and the Life I seek.
East, South, West, North – Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. So be it! Aho!”
What a beautiful time to recognize and appreciate the ending of a year
& The passing through to a new!
This is a potent time to reflect on the previous year. This is also a potent time to clarify your intentions for the upcoming year – helping you to manifest and create the life of your dreams. Intention-setting practices like meditation or yoga or ceremony, vision boards, art, music, dance, and any other form of creation or expression is a beautiful way to call in the energies you wish to cultivate in the upcoming year. Through these conscious actions and efforts, we create space for our intentions to manifest and ground into our Earthly life.
I have felt a deep pulling, now more than ever, to work in closer harmony with The Medicine Wheel – especially during this compelling time of transition and completion, commencement and rebirth. The Medicine Wheel is of Native American decent, and it represents the cycles of life as they turn and turn around the symbolic Wheel of the Year. Appearing as a circle, the Medicine Wheel as a whole teaches us about the never-ending lessons, rhythms, and evolutions of life – spinning around and around as each year passes. The Wheel is split into 4 parts, a part for each of the 4 Directions/Elements/Seasons correlating with one another to share a similar message and teaching. For each section of the Wheel, there is also a Gatekeeper – a specific power animal that holds the “medicine” of that part of the cycle.
For those of you that have worked with me before or who know me well, know that I LOVE learning from Earth and her natural rhythms, as it encourages me to recognize and honor MY own cycles. The Medicine Wheel is a powerful Shamanic tool that helps us do this. If we embrace the “medicine” of the Wheel (otherwise known as the teaching), we can embody the different powers, strengths, and wisdoms it holds. If we implement into our Lives what reverberates and resonates for us, in return each rotation around our Wheel of Life is smoother and filled with greater peace and knowing. You can find many different variations of The Medicine Wheel out there – I offer one below that resonates with me. As always, you may discover your own and choose differently. 😊
Traditionally we rotate clockwise, beginning in the East. The element that correlates with the East is Air; the season is Spring; the color is Yellow. The Gatekeeper of the East is known as the Eagle. The Eagle offers us the medicine of clarity, of sight, of perspective. The Eagle soars high in the sky, blown by the wind, gazing down onto Earth and all of its workings. The Air in which theEagle soars is representative of breath, of intuition. This part of the Wheel symbolizes new beginnings, as the sun rises in the East each and every day. It is said that we first enter our Earth bodies in the East; it is also the place of conception. You can observe and feel this conception taking place during the Spring – when the Earth is waking back up from the silent solace of winter. We give our gratitude and respect to the East for bestowing us with a new day, new beginnings, with clarity and perspective, and with the chance to start anew.
Transitioning to the South, it is the place of Fire, of Summer, of the color Red. The Gatekeeper of the South is known as the Coyote. The Coyote offers us the medicine of resilience, perseverance, determination, and a whole lot of playfulness and trickery. In the South, the heat of Summer burns like Red Fire to transform and grow and play. The South is a place of passion and action, of coming together in community to thrive. Beginnings conceptualized in the East gain momentum and shapeshift in the South, allowing for Divine manifestation.
Transitioning to the West, it is the place of Water, of Fall, of the color Black. The Gatekeeper of the West is known as the Bear. The Bear teaches us about renewal, hibernation,rejuvenation, and acceptance of the dark. The Bear is also a fierce protector and nurturer. The sun sets every evening the West, encompassing the sky with Black darkness. It is said that when we are ready to leave our Earthly bodies, we will exit through the doors of the West. We also call upon this Watery energy to become comfortable with fluidity, with our emotions, with the rain; Water is known to have very cleansing and purifying properties, too. You can feel or imagine this time similar to the final stages of pregnancy – where the fetus lies in the dark, watery womb, replenished and renewed.
The final transition is to the North – the Element of Earth, Season of Winter, Color of White. The Gatekeeper of the North is known as the Buffalo. The medicine of the Buffalo is that of knowing and wisdom, gratitude and abundance. When Native Americans would hunt and kill a Buffalo, they used EVERY part of the animal. This was seen as a representation of the ultimate surrender and an action that honored the cycles of life and death. The buffalo was respected greatly for it’s life-giving qualities. Everything comes full circle in the North. It is said that this is place where the Elders, Ancestors, and Spirits reside. I see Earth and the North as a place of coming home – of grounding into our foundation for the next turn of the Wheel. Do you remember Harriet Tubman? With help from a friendly white woman, she followed the North star to run away because she feared being sold as a slave. Once free, she went back to assist hundreds of others on their way to freedom on “The Underground Railroad”. Through the support of the North, she helped to close one cycle AND begin a new for the hundreds she saved.
We lean into the support of the North during this time of year – as we are preparing to cross the threshold into 2019.
You can easily bless your home (or any space) through your thoughts, words, and actions.
STEP ONE: Begin at your front door or the entrance to your space. As you walk in, look around and start to mindfully walk the perimeter of the room, slowly making your way through each part of your home.
STEP TWO: Gaze at your space with the feeling and the thoughts you wish to reflect onto your space – peace, comfort, safety, healing, etc. (You may choose to carry your favorite crystal or burn your favorite herb or wood as you do this.) Invite an inner feeling of Love and hold the clear intention to Bless in your heart center.
STEP THREE: Sounds are a powerful tool that create our reality. Words, songs, and incantations can be a promising way to deliver a potent Blessing. Here is an incantation I have used that is quite simple but effective: “Bless this house. Bless this home. Heal this house. Heal this home. Love this house. Love this home.” You may repeat this as many times as you feel called as you walk around each room, being sure to walk the edges and corners. You may also replace the words house/home with space/place or any other word(s) that feels right. It may feel right for you to touch certain objects in your space, or move your hands in an organic magical way as you repeat the incantation. I would recommend repeating the incantation at least 3 times all the way through out loud with conviction, certainty, and feeling.
STEP FOUR: Once you have made it through the entire space, return to the center of the space or to the center of your home. Close your eyes and breathe for several moments into this Blessing that you have bestowed into your space. Thank yourself, and notice what you feel. Record any experience or reaction as you feel called to.