Blessing Way- A New Old Tradition

My dear step-daughter Candice is expecting her second child, a son this time named Basil – we’re over the Moon excited for this little sage to be welcomed into this lifetime alongside sister Paisley Jayne, so when I was offered the opportunity to throw a shower, I was delighted.

With the kids being in Tampa, I’m not always able to do on-the-spot family events, so I missed the first shower with ‘Mimi’, and the second shower hosted by Nik’s employer. Third shower – OK – I got this. Then Candice called; ‘we’re doing a Blessing Way – Google it.’

On a last minute of inspiration, I did a quick search of headlines to get the gist of things.

Blessing Way isn’t the usual shower, with baby gifts, oohhs and aaahhs as you pass around plush, nice smelling baby things, with games and rituals. Rather, it's about the Mother and the amazing journey she’s on, as we lift her up with support and intention, to welcome our newest loved one. It’s literally blessing the way for a graceful birth and a circle of unconditional love and joy for the baby.

We’ve come a long way to get back to the roots of family, compassion and community.

Meghan welcomed us into her plant store – I was in heaven. We made space for tea and goodies (thanks to co-host and Candice’s BFF Christy), and I set about meeting the people that Candice considers her spiritual circle. I was among pranic healers, doulas, and teachers of boys (thank you), I met midwives, mothers, massage therapists and more. These were the Wise Women and Mothers of her beloved community; a haven of healers from so many wisdom traditions in one place…BOOM just like that. It was easy to be inspired beyond my original vision.

We opened with a meditation to enliven the elements and join our hearts. We enjoyed stories of how we met Candice, tales of laughter and remembering, paired with tears of love. I led The Chocolate Meditation, inspired by my recent training with Elena Brower, releasing more joyful tears, bringing forth loved ones lost. Then the radiant mother Candice passed around feathers for our Intention Setting Meditation – they hang over Basil’s crib in a handmade mobile, so he can feel our love daily.

I’m grateful to the women who joined us, to Candice who has clearly touched all of their lives with mutual love and respect. I see a future where women raise children in homes of meditation and mindfulness, regardless of their background or income. I'm hopeful this momentum will bring a wave of peace the world so desperately needs right now.

Fear cannot grow where seeds of love have been planted. 

#aditi #blessingway

Beginning Meditation - Month 1

Learning to sit….

1. Environment matters
Find a clean, quiet space in your home where you can sit undisturbed, away from the distractions and pressures of the external world.
The air should be clean, fresh and well ventilated but not breezy.

2. Cleanliness is a factor
Your face, hands and feet should feel clean and fresh, adding a certain respect and vibrancy to your practice. If you practice meditation in the morning, you will want to evacuate your bladder and bowels first.

3. Preparing the body, energy and mind
If you have time, spend 5-10 minutes stretching the muscles, soft tissues, joints and glands, to circulate the blood, regulate energy channels, calm the mind and prepare the hips and back to sit. It should be gentle and mindful. You should consult a qualified Teacher for the Hatha postures most appropriate for your stage and dosha (constitution).

4. Consistency is key
Agree to sit at the same time every day, without fail, as this will train your Mind to develop your new habit automatically. Depending on your schedule, either early in the day or in the evening will be most accessible.

5. Sitting options may vary!
You can sit cross-legged, keeping your head, neck and torso in alignment. The first month you can sit with your back against a wall, while your muscles and soft tissues are being trained. You may also sit in a chair, with your feet resting comfortably on the ground or use blocks or blankets to bring the ground to you! It’s best for your low back if your hips are level with, or slightly higher than your knees. If sitting on the floor, use folded blankets, or a sturdy pillow or bolster to elevate your hips.

6. Relax your body...please!
Scan the body from toe tips to scalp, acknowledging where you might feel yourself holding or tense, and observe the tension release; ust feel each segment of your body relax. Then move from the scalp to the toes again, spine tall, body relaxed. Be effortless.

7. Meet your breath – it’s the secret we so often overlook
Without changing anything, experience your body breathing. Observe where and how it breathes, and then gently begin to shape your breath. Take 10-15 smooth, even, quiet breaths, neither to deep nor too shallow, allowing the breath to become smooth. Resolve any hesitations or shakiness. Feel the body relax and release on the exhale, and experience refreshment and clarity on the waves of your inhale. When your breath becomes smooth, release all effort. Relax. Then bring your attention to the effortless breath beginning at the tips of your nostrils, and experience the sound of ‘So’ on the inhale and ‘Hum’ on the exhale. Repeat, relax, and sit as long as if comfortable or as time allows. If the Mind wanders, it's ok and natural, just bring your attention back to your breath and the sound and feeling of So Hum.
(There are several breath practices that are beneficial to meditation preparation, which can be suggested by a qualified Teacher.)

To finish your meditation and transition from the inner experience to the outer world, become aware of your breath again and allow it to gently deepen. Observe your body, and how it feels to be held by the surface on which you are sitting. Place your cupped palms over your closed eyes and as you become ready, gently open your eyes on an inhale. Then slowly lower the hands, and in your own way, give thanks for the time you had to dedicate to your practice and experience the joy of looking forward to the next practice.

Mindfully transition back into your day – when stress hits, just remember your happy place of peace and calm.

Process and methodology comes from the tradition of the Himalayan Masters, and the teachings of Swami Rama.

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