By Savitree Kaur
From a very early age, most of us experience some level of pain, and many of us accumulate pain faster than we can properly express, work through, and release. And many of us, at least for a while, stuff our pain. Deep down. However we choose to manage our pain, there is healing to do. It is the human condition. This work is, in fact, something we all have in common. We all seek it: a way to become whole.
In as many ways as we are unique, there are that many ways to seek wholeness. Here I’ve grouped them into 4 categorical paths:
By altering our minds or staying perpetually entertained and busy, we borrow from our future potential to avoid dealing with and feeling incomplete now. It puts us in debt, disabling our ability to break the cycle. Ways we distract: drugs, shopping, social media, web surfing, hectic schedules, food, Starbucks, Netflix, the fight to be right, and hiding out in “meditation.” I start to feel depleted even thinking about this list.
We look to others to make us feel whole—especially our significant other. A huge burden on the other person, don’t you think? The question is, can anyone truly meet and sustain our need? As humans, we can be really needy.
The Miracle Pill
We look for that one group; that one diet; that one religion; that one modality that will set us on course and take care of it all. We want to set it in motion, never think about it again, and live whole, happily ever after. And when it doesn’t work, we are disappointed.
Acceptance that pain happens, that change happens, that we change, that others change, that we cannot control others, that we can have control over our own thoughts and actions, and that understanding own nature is the best chance we have at understanding the world.
There is divine intelligence in all that exists in the Universe. It is this search for divine intelligence that causes us to keep searching, regardless of which path we choose.
It is in acceptance and open-ended inquiry and curiosity that continues to bring us closer to that divine intelligence that unfolds our essence. It is in meeting our divine essence that we become whole. It is in our wholeness that we begin to heal.
Where to Begin
Breathe deeply: It is the bridge that connects us to our Truth (the Essence of who we are). It also soothes our nervous system and slows everything down so that we may better filter and digest what is happening around us. The One-Minute Breath is a powerful exercise: 20 seconds inhale, 20 seconds hold, 20 seconds exhale. Try it first at 10 seconds each, then 15 seconds each, building up to 20 seconds. Notice the sensations and ways your mind and body communicate with you as you do this exercise.
Chant: Mantra recodes the negative thought patterns that sabotage our efforts to become whole and excel. Wahe Guru seeds gratitude. Ang Sang Wahe Guru celebrates the divine intelligence that lives in every cell of your body. Gobinday Mukanday helps to remove deep seated patterns. And Sat Nam means Truth is our Name. Chanting also helps to strengthen the throat chakra, which governs your ability to express your Truth.
Drink Water (without ice): notice the difference after each glass.
Move: Use it or lose it. Any kriya will do. Or dance, as they say, like no one is watching.
Savitree Kaur, E-RYT 200 and KRI certified, is co-founder of Urban Yoga Chicago, a Kundalini Yoga, meditation and wellness center in South Evanston, IL. She offers small group classes, private sessions and meditation courses for adults and children. Her strength is in helping individuals customize their meditation practice to serve their highest goals. She is also mom to two beautiful teenaged children. For more on Savitree, seeSavitreeKaur.com. For more on the work that she does, see UrbanYogaChicago.org and BlissfulAreWe.com.