Live in your heart
Our heart space is associated with joy, love and inner peace; a place we can drop into and actually live in as we become more attuned and open. As we strive to BE love, to let go and live more fully IN love, we see that the practice of opening our hearts can be a vulnerable one. The spaces of our mind, body and soul require patience and true listening as the permission and foundation to go deeper.
Anahata, the heart chakra
In tantric and yogic traditions, chakras are believed to be the energy centers of the body. They are connected to major organs and glands, governing the body as a whole. They associate with the mind, spirit and soul. There are 7 main energy centers that serve as junction points between the body and consciousness, matter and mind. Each chakra is linked with a colour, element, general "personality" and area of the body, to name a few.
Today we will focus on Anahata, the heart chakra. Anahata is governed by the colour green. It is located at the center of the chest and includes the heart, cardiac plexus, thymus gland, lungs, and breasts. Anahata deals with our ability to love; our joy and inner peace.
"When your heart chakra is open, you are flowing with love and compassion, you are quick to forgive, and you accept others and yourself. A closed heart chakra can give way to grief, anger, jealousy, fear of betrayal, and hatred toward yourself and others." - Michelle Fondin, The Chopra Center
Open with intention
Many of us hold incredible tension around the shoulders and neck, through the side body and into the midline of the spine. The energetic heart meridian runs from the chest, down the inner seam of the arm, and out the tip of the pinky finger; many movements and transitions we make with our arms in yoga can help to open up this space and move energy through this meridian. It is important that these openers be done with intention; create clarity around why you are moving or placing your body in this way, visualizing and breathing into the spaces you are softening and opening.
Working to harmonize and clear your heart center is a holistic process; how you carry yourself, your thoughts and actions, and the way you treat yourself and others all factor into the health of your relationship with Anahata.
The Chopra Center offers these easy tips to "give love to receive love"
- Smile at everyone you see daily, even if you don’t feel like smiling. It’s contagious.
- Forgive and move on. Life is too short to hold grudges.
- Give friends, family and co-workers positive affirmations and feedback.
- Try to go one day a week without criticizing anyone or anything, including yourself.