How many moments do we take the time to honor our heart? After all, it is the heart that is the ultimate driver of life. This concept goes for both physical and spiritual realms. Physically, we must have a healthy heart to survive, and spiritually, it’s said that we must look to acquire joy to the heart for added longevity in life. Further, we know that the heart is the solid representation of love.
The power of yoga balances the two aspects in astonishing ways. While yoga is defined as unison, the union of mind, body and spirit is present. When speaking of the spirit, we can connect the heart as the same, due to its complex energetic frequency, also can be known as intuitive feeling.
I mention “astonishing” because indeed, the heart in comparison to the physical and spiritual have many commonalities.
To keep the heart healthy, eating anything leafy green can pump up your vitamin A, C and K intake. It has more potassium and magnesium, it’s rich in fiber, which all combined helps lower cholesterol and reduces your risk of heart disease. On the flip side, to keep a humble heart, one must first understand the concept of the heart chakra which coincidentally enough (or not) is represented by the color green.
Yoga for the Physical Heart
Cardiovascular health is a massive concern for many, especially men. Those who choose to do yoga to improve their heart health can receive many benefits including calming the nervous system and reducing disease-causing inflammation. Yoga also is a huge component in stress relief and taming hypertension. While yoga brings attention to the breathe, this awareness responds as the key factor in improving circulation and lung function. There are many yoga positions that specifically target a healthy pumping heart. Most require touching the toes, which is basic for bringing the head below the heart; and breathing from the diaphragm. Breathing while in these positions, the breathe not only massages the muscles, it keeps the heart beat at rhythm. Going into the Pyramid, which in the western world is called “downward dog” has its more extreme benefits.
Yoga for the Spiritual Heart
Being a certified yoga instructor, yet in recent years specializing in Guided Meditation, I tend to go more in believing that there are many more spiritual attributes in yoga for the heart. Pairing yoga and meditation heightens the heart chakra in extreme ways. It’s a reminder of love; love for self and others. To bring awareness to love can magnify humility in ones sense of being. It holds the key to compassion. The most valuable love a person can acquire is self love. When self love is attained one can decipher what true love really entails.
A specific posture in the Kemetic Yoga practice is called “The Divine Embrace”. In this movement, the arms are around the upper body giving a self hug; a reminder to embrace self divinely. “A grateful heart is the beginning of greatness. It is an expression of humility. It is a foundation for the development of such virtues as prayer, faith, courage, contentment, happiness, love, and well-being.”, quoted by crowned King of All Kings, His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia. This realization is paired with focusing thoughts to the healing of the heart. The breathe serves as the life force. In most indigenous cultures, the heart beat is referenced by music. In celebration, tribes gathered together and played the drum in the same rhythm as the heartbeat. It is considered the root sound to life.
An easy and very important posture to mention is when laying the stomach flat to the earth. This represents womb and heart connection to the earth. Noticing that the heart lay flat to the earth, one must visualize the mystical healing coming from the earth to the heart. To balance the healing, that same energy coming to the heart, must be reciprocated to the earth in recognition that the earth, and everything within, too needs love and healing. This is a heightened awareness to mastering true unconditional love to oneself and to the earth, essentially, The Creator in total. This visualization daily can raise the heart vibration, maximizing the power of love within. For one to truly harmonize the mind, body and soul energies in balance, serve as a full commitment to the power of self awareness and the integration of insight and intuition in all aspects fueled by the heart.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
The opposite of love, is fear.