Thursday, October 8, 2009

Reaching for the Roots

Reaching for the roots allows you to reach for the sky. First you need a solid foundation, then you can soar! Sometimes you need to look where you do not expect of find what you seek.

Roots support all plant life. Although they are typically hidden underground, roots always send shoots above the ground. It is the roots that bring nourishment and support to the biggest of trees. A tree cannot live without its roots.

Roots are mysterious because we cannot see them. They live in the darkness. The seed first grows roots before it can send energy above ground.

Humans do not have physical roots. But we do have spiritual roots. They are the hidden parts of us that nourish and support us. It is easy to be distracted by the physical world around us. Going inward requires slowing down which is difficult in our hectic modern world.

In yoga we need to establish a strong foundation as the basis for any pose. So we send rooting energy downward to allow us to lengthen upward. Prana is the vital life force we have within us and that which breathes through us. There are different Prana vayus or functions. Two of the Prana vayus are apana vayu and prana vayu. The apana vayu is the root energy that moves downward from the pelvis. It is associated with the exhalation. The prana vayu moves upward from the heart. It governs the inhalation. Together they lengthen our spine and create a feeling of expansion. Together they give us life.

Examining our roots can mean looking into our past but it also means going deep inside. When we can feel our roots, we have strength and power. Places that may seem mysterious and not fully understood are where we find the answers that have the most meaning for each individual. Just as the roots of tree need the dormancy of the leaves to begin growing again, we need to slow down our busy lives to allow our spiritual growth to deepen. Enjoy this stillness as a time of expansion and awakening.

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