I am amazed at how effective a regular spiritual practice really is. I have been really working hard on my yoga teacher training for almost six weeks now, and I notice my hips, while still cranky, are getting looser, and I am getting muscle definition in my arms -(look out Michelle Obama!)and I discovered a muscle in my abdomen last week that I never knew was there. I am inching closer to being able to do a head stand. These are the pleasant physical side affects of an intentional yoga and meditation practice.
What I was unprepared for, although I had been warned of them, were the emotional side affects of a deeper, more intentional practice. There are definite emotional side effects when one embarks on a journey of heart opening and hip opening. I spent almost every day the last two weeks crying. All of the grief I had processed and left unprocessed has been working its way out.
I have also been exploring a practice of prayer with art. Engaging in a creative process of meditation with scripture or sacred writing and responding with collage, drawing, poems, etc…. This combined with the yoga and meditation, has cracked me open, leaving me stronger and more vulnerable at the same time.
I think so much has come up because I am ready for it to come up, and because I have been working at a superficial level on some of this emotional clutter for a long time. But it turns out that I have been continuing to hold on to fear, hurt, and anger that I wasn’t even aware of, and the practice of opening my heart, and opening my mind to my breath and the possibility of something sacred and holy being inside has begun to clear a way to seeing it. I can see glimmers of my strength, and the sacredness reflected in myself and in others. It’s beautiful, and while there is a bit more clutter to clear before I can fully revel in it, I am thrilled to that it is there.
I know that clearing my emotional clutter is a life long process , and I am so relieved that I have found some helpful clearing tools.