"If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud." ~ Emile Zola

22 March 2012


Lying on the grass last weekend, I felt inspired by being so close to the earth and the tiny microcosm that flourishes on its surface. I was charmed by the intricate veining of delicate leaf skeletons that had "survived" the winter and teeny, tiny newborn clovers. I felt the earth's solidity and weight, opened to it and trusted.

VISUALIZATION (I created this for one of my yoga classes, and have both used and taught it.):
Spread a blanket or yoga mat onto a stretch of grass or sand (or you may choose to use stretch out directly on the grass). Lie on your stomach against the earth. Find a comfortable position for your head and arms: arms at your side and resting either ear on the ground OR arms crossed under your head and resting either ear on your arms. Relax. Close your eyes.

Once you are comfortable, allow your breath to deepen slowly, naturally. Breathe into your belly first, then let the air move up into your chest. Naturally, the ground will change the way your breath expands into you. Notice this. When your deep breathing feels full and easy, take one last deep breath. Hold for a few seconds, then let all control go and allow the breath to flow out effortlessly. As you do this, release all tension from your muscles and feel your body melt into the ground. Let your breath be soft and natural now.

Bring your awareness to the gentleness of your relaxed breath, and how each inhale presses into the earth. With each exhale, feel the release of your muscles relaxing into the support of the earth beneath you. Feeling the earth cradling you, and allow yourself to open to the safety of this, your vulnerable heart trusting Mother Earth to hold you. Let go into the weight of the ground. Each breath out allows you to move more deeply into this sensation.

Move your awareness gently to the sounds that surround you. Hear the birds, the rustle of leaves in the breeze, the sound of water if nearby. Rest in this. Now guide your awareness to your skin. Is the sun warming you, or a breeze moving against your eyelashes? Feel your body where it touches the earth, the blanket or mat or grass beneath you. Rest in this. Next, notice the smells around you. Do you notice the scent of the sun on your skin, of blossoms in your garden, of the ocean, of fresh grass? Rest in this. Now return to the sensation of trusting the earth, feeling it support you. Breathe. Rest in this. Should your mind become distracted at any time, gently draw it back without judgment.

When you are ready, move outward, leading your awareness out of the meditative state. Deepen the breath slowly. Experience a deep sense of gratitude for the planet and the beauty it beholds. Open to it. Notice the quietness of your mind and the openness and warmth of your heart. Know that you can return to this place at any time. Breathe.

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