Stillness – by @JanetNestor
“When there is silence one finds the anchor of the universe within oneself” ― Lao Tzu
When I think of stillness, I instantly thought of the Taoist philosophy lectures during my Chi Healing classes many years ago. I remember the foundational teachings of Tai Chi and feel of the Qi Gong form that I practice regularly. Stillness is part of the human journey.
Using ancient thought from Chinese Medicine, energy is often categorized as yin or yang. Yang energy is sunshine, masculine, and movement oriented. Yang energy likes to get things done quickly and push to the finish line – it is direct, logical, and rational. Yin energy is feminine energy, moonbeams, soft and passive. Yin energy will stop, listen to a bird’s song and enjoy the moment – it is relaxed, imaginative, intuitive and will “sleep on” a decision rather than rush to the finish line. Each of us, male and female, young or old, is a mix of these two energies.
Stillness, yin energy, is by its nature rooted and grounded. Grounded energy is solidly connected to life and the earth. This sense of flow, permanence, and moment to moment connection creates a life lived in the present moment, de-emphasizing the past and the future. A present moment lifestyle tends to center you, meaning that you are fully aligned and allow the flow of spiritual energy and earth energy into your body and energy field. A now-centered life tends to become one that is energetically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually balanced.
Yin energy is built into each of us – a part of our humanness – a part of our body structure through our yin and yang meridian system (vessels used in acupuncture) and our yin and yang organs. For example, your central nervous system is made up of yin and yang meridians, and your body is made up of yin and yang organs. Your yin organs are your heart, lungs, kidneys, and spleen and they primarily produce and regulate your blood and bodily fluids. Your yang organs are gallbladder, urinary bladder, stomach, small and large intestines and one of the meridian vessels called the triple warmer, the meridian that takes you into fight or flight in times of danger. The yang organs mainly digest food and transmit nutrients to your body. As you can see, there is communication and cooperation between your meridians and organs keeping you mentally and physically vital and alive.
Because each of us has yin energy woven into our very existence, each of us can choose to embrace the yin within us and allow the growth of our inner-stillness. We can claim the gift that is woven into the fabric of our being. I have a favorite phrase I always share with anyone having difficulties claiming their inner-stillness – Why would the Creator allow you to be born without the ability to “phone home”? Your yin energy is your GPS and your telephone line to home – to the world of spirit – to the strength of Creation – from which you came.
I’ve chosen to share two very easy ways to use your phone line and your GPS system home to the stillness within.
- Close your eyes, breathe consciously, bringing your in-breath from your belly and fully inflating your lungs. On the out-breath, exhale slowly and thoroughly. Continue breathing in this way for a minute or two. Ask your body and spirit this question: Will you show me how to quiet my mind and find the inner silence and stillness that is within me? Continue to breathe, trusting that gradually one breath and one day at a time you will be shown the way.
- Gap Breathing: Breathe using the directions above. After a few breaths, on the next in-breath, inhale deeply and hold the breath. Listen closely. There is not one sound in that gap between your in-breath and out-breath. There is total stillness. Exhale and hold the breath again. You will once again find that same stillness. You learn to trust this silence and stillness and extend it from one or two seconds into minutes. Eventually, experiencing the silence and stillness will feel normal and natural, and you will be able to tap into it anytime you choose.
– Janet Nestor
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Please join @JanetNestor as she steps up to host #Spiritchat (twitter chat) on Sunday, March 18th at 9amEDT. This will be Janet’s debut at hosting the chat (although I have co-hosted her a few times before…). Janet is a wonderful friend and long-term member and participant in the #Spiritchat community. Thank you, Janet, for stepping up to host the live chat as I travel… Namaste. – Kumud