Today’s Silent Sunday practice develops the Neutral Mind, which is the fourth of the ten physical, mental, and energetic bodies that comprise one’s human form. I have found that attention to this aspect of individual capacity helps to alleviate anxiety and anger: The Neutral Mind promotes balanced perspective. When I find myself veering away from grounded clarity, the ability to connect with others or the Divine is unattainable: That inability furthers feelings of helplessness or frustration. The ability to pull back from an emotional surge not only maintains inner peace, it ensures that one’s higher consciousness remains accessible.
One thought that I find helpful to remember is that anger arises when one is unable to control circumstances or outcomes: While seemingly obvious, this idea is easy to forget when in the throes of distracting emotions. Conscious recollection of this fundamental concept reminds me that I always have the potential to control my reactions and responses. As clarity returns, the move to a rooted center ensues: Connection to the Divine and its eternal grace once again becomes possible.
To begin, sit down and lean back on your hands, tilting the torso about 30 degrees. With the left leg remaining long on the floor, raise the right to an angle of 60 degrees. For the next 3 minutes, keep the leg aloft as you do Breath of Fire. Then, switch sides for another 3 minutes.
Now, lean back onto your elbows, which lowers the body about 30 more degrees. Again keeping the left leg on the floor, raise the right 30 degrees off of the floor. Repeat Breath of Fire for 2 minutes. Then, switch legs; continue Breath of Fire for an additional 2 minutes.
Next, lie on your back. You may keep your arms by your sides, or place the hands under the hips to support the low back. As you inhale, simultaneously lift the left leg 30 degrees off the floor, as the right leg rises to an angle of 60 degrees. Exhale to lower both legs, so that they reach the ground together. Then, inhale as the right leg rises 30 degrees, and the left lifts 60 degrees. Exhale both legs down, reaching the ground simultaneously. Repeat the sequence two more times.
Following the leg lifts, bring both knees in toward the chest; wrap your arms around your legs, creating a compact ball. Raise your head, so that the now goes between the knees. Engage Breath of Fire for 30-60 seconds. Then, ease the head back onto the floor. Still in your tight ball, breathe deeply for one more minute.
Finally, come into a seated crossed-leg posture. I created the following mudra to connect one’s intuition to the energy of the Heart Chakra. On each hand, touch the pinky fingertip to the thumb tip. Then, connect those two configurations together at their tips. Join the remaining three fingertips on each hand together: right index to left index; middle to middle; and ring finger to ring fingertip. Situate the conjoined pinky/thumb mudra at the level of the Heart Center, with the other connected fingers pointing upward. With the eyes ever-so-slightly open, gaze down toward the tip of the nose. Be mindful that the head does not tilt forward; maintain a long, aligned neck and spine. Breathe deeply for 3-5 minutes.
To transition to Anjali Mudra, or Prayer Pose, cover your eyes with your hands. Open the eyes into the darkness of your palms: Take a minute or so to roll the eyes, look up and down, and side to side. This will help to relieve any ache that may have developed from the sustained nose gaze of the first meditation.
Then, bring the palms together in front of the heart in a traditional Prayer position. Make sure that the forearms remain parallel to the ground, and that the thumbs press firmly against the sternum, with the other fingers together and pointing straight up. With eyes closed, gaze upward to the Third Eye. Again, breathe deeply for 3-5 minutes before slowly lying down for a few minutes of svasana.