The Wrong Affair – #movementmonday
As I excitedly walked into a cocktail party, the “gut” reaction I experienced was such a surprise to my body, I couldn’t wait for my mind to catch up. Everything about how I felt was so expressive and communicative, but I had no words. I thought my raw emotions were written across my face. I felt some panic, some shame, embarrassment, and relief all in one moment…when I realized I just felt “out of place”. My body felt electrocuted and before I could identify my sensation and intellectually process the situation… I found myself at the wrong affair!
This gut feeling was faster, more direct, and more comprehensive in alerting me something was amiss. This “hunch” also gave me the ability to be aware of all that was taking place around me so I could process unconsciously and faster than if I were to intentionally analyze it. This method of being able to follow your “felt sense” can lead you towards an experience of inner knowing. In yoga, we can learn to identify different sensations within the body by using the “felt sense” approach. The result of this intelligence can help us cope with stress and anxiety, redirect negative and aggressive energies, and create our own happiness. When we practice yoga and allow the learning process to be less about words and reactions and more about a “body sense” the mind will allow us to recall these positive sensations in time of need.
It only took a few moments for my mind and body to catch up with each other when I found myself observing the room. Packed with hundreds of people, this party room felt cold, yet faces were smiling. The aura around me felt loud, yet the music muffled. The excitement level I had originally felt suddenly became more like comfort and “home-cooking”. The felt senses began to kick in again and I was able to link my physical feelings with those of intellectual thoughts, calibrating both mind and body to realize, I now found myself at the right party!
When we practice our asanas (poses) we are encouraged to hold the posture for longer periods of time. This allows a magical transformation to take place in the body. As we ground down deeper and reach further into each expression, the body will endure and extract new sensations. It is our job to memorize those sensations and learn to recall them from time to time when in need of being uplifted or calmed. Perfecting your awareness towards inner body sensations or a “felt sense” often brings clarity, messages, or can provide avenues for the body-mind ability to help self regulate when feeling out of control.
I left that party, floating on air as if I had been kissed for the very first time. I was breathing in fresh autumn air as I walked on cold pressed pavement. I was spiritually touched by the celebration I shared with friends. And, my felt sense was a beautiful flutter of a dove’s wing that sang to me “Namaste”.
MOVEMENT MONDAY: Mula Bandha
This is a seal we can create in our bodies from the pelvic floor to the back of the spine behind the naval. This seal can be held and lifted with breathing techniques and deep core strengtheners. A Mula Bandha is foundational principle of yoga and an prevalent in mind-body disciplines. A Mūla Bandha should be attempted first in retention after inhalation. The region of the lower abdomen between the navel and the anus should be contracted towards the spine and pulled up towards the diaphragm. The lower stomach looks deeply sucked into the rib cage resembling a waif look to the human abdomen. This deep connection of mind body allows the body to absorb and conserve energy for the better good.