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Relaxation and meditation in Savasana

Yoga with Mary

We all have a history…his story and her story…and beneath, behind, above and beyond that history is a person, born of unlimited potential and with unlimited capacity to unfold that potential in action. Ideally, no effort is involved; it is the way things are in this wonderful, magical process we call Life. If we feel confined, constricted, restricted, oppressed, depressed or otherwise afflicted, it is to the degree that we resist the process of life as it is. In an attempt to make life fit our story, we screen out all but a fraction of our magnificent selves. How sad is that! Imagine the effort it takes; imagine the amount of energy we consume in maintaining that fictional account of who we are. It’s like standing on the shore and trying to hold back the ocean with our bare hands! Let us be done with that, once and for all; life is coming at us in a torrent, pouring itself out through us, and spilling us back into itself again and again. Let us be done with this lukewarm, half and half life and throw ourselves gallantly into the waves, and surrendering all resistance, immerse ourselves totally without reserve. The ocean will carry us deep down into itself where the waters are still, where silence reigns supreme and where its power is held in suspension, before carrying us to the surface again to play, to laugh, to live passionately and joyfully, to love and serve, to create and recreate, and wholeheartedly to enjoy the cut and thrust of this great adventure.

It’s as simple as lying down on the floor.

First, find a quiet space in your home, where you will not be disturbed. This little space should be warm but not stuffy; draw the curtains or dim the light depending on the time of day.
Light a candle or burn a stick of incense, if you like.
Wear loose comfortable clothing.
Place a comfortable pad or mat on the floor.
Arrange a light blanket as a covering and lie down carefully on your back.

The posture I am about to describe to you is called Savasana, popularly known as the pose of the corpse. It entails the ritual laying out of the body you inhabit in an attitude of repose as close as possible to deathlike.
Do not let this put you off.
It is not designed to induce a morbid state of mind. On the contrary, it will lighten the load immensely.

Lying on your back, begin by raising the knees towards the ceiling.
Pull the arms down the sides of the body and raise the hips from the floor.
Bring the hands around the small of the back and scoop them down over the buttocks.
The tail bone is now curling inwards as you drop back on the floor.
Pull in the navel and press the lumber vertebrae into the back.
Extend your legs, one at a time.
Lengthen them downwards away from the hips into the heels.
Separate the feet and allow them to fall outwards from the ankles.
Relax the legs and allow them to fall outwards from the hips.
As the muscles soften, they loosen their grip on the bones, the joints open and the legs fall heavily and roll outward.
Wriggle the shoulder blades down the back; you will feel the breast bone lifting up and the shoulders rolling back into the floor.
Extend the arms down a little more, coaxing the shoulders downward away from your ears.
Relax the arms and let them roll out a little, away from the sides, palms facing upwards, fingers curled in over the palms.
Tilt the chin inwards towards the hollow of the throat.
The head comes to rest on the centre point at the back of the skull.

Nothing to do now, except breathe.
And you don’t even need to do that as your body is doing it for you.
You don’t even have to think about it.
Abandon all mental commentary.
Allow your thoughts to subside and immerse yourself in the breathing process.
Lie motionless, absolutely still.
Allow your whole body to melt into the good earth; it is of the substance of the earth and belongs to it.

For now, you are here in this body.

Imagine you have just arrived here.

Forget everything you know, your name, personal history; all descriptions whatsoever.
Remain still and very quiet.

Relinquish all effort; see what this feels like.
Feel the buttocks spreading out under the weight of the body.
Feel the belly falling into the back.
And the back moulding itself into the floor.
Feel yourself becoming heavier and heavier as you sink deeper and deeper.
Enjoy this feeling.
It’s like coming home after a hard days work.
There is nothing left undone and you are satisfied.
You feel quite content and there is a quiet happiness bubbling up from somewhere deep inside.
Your body is resting comfortably on the floor, safe and secure.
Your mind is resting in your body, absorbed in the sensations arising within.
You feel warm and soft under your blanket.
Your breathing is steady and smooth.

Feel your face.
The eyes and mouth are softly closed; the eyes sinking heavily back into the skull.
Don’t move, not even a flicker of the eyelashes.
Feel your lips softly touching each other.
Feel your way to the inside of your mouth.
Notice the teeth parting slightly as you relax the jaw.
The tongue floats down over the lower palate.
The root of the tongue recedes down into the throat.
Feel the contours of your face.
Feel your face from inside.
Now spread yourself out again throughout the entire terrain of your body.

Notice your breathing.
Feel your breath coming in and going out through the nose.
Feel your abdomen and chest… rising and falling….rising and falling….
Identify with your breathing, become your breath.
It is just as easy as identifying with your physical body.

Feel the heart beat….the rhythmic beat of your heart….
Tune in closely…you can almost hear it…

Notice every sensation as it arises.
Remain watchful.
Do not sleep.
Go to the edge.
You are neither asleep nor awake.
This is the twilight zone…a dreamlike state.
Let yourself be carried on the current of life as it flows unimpeded through all the spaces you occupy under your skin.

Sink deeper and deeper below the little islands of material that compose your body.
Feel the vastness of the space you occupy now.
See this space…imagine it from behind your closed eyes.
Float away….surrender.
Be a drop in the ocean.
Become the ocean.
Let the dream of your life unfold.
Imagine yourself five years from now.
Be inspired.
Resolve to be all that is possible to be.
Ask for what you need to make it happen.
Then let it go.
The Universe will look after the details.

Remain here for as long as you like………

When you are ready, begin the journey to the surface.
Feel your body…feel your skin.
Feel the clothes against your skin.
Feel the weight of your body on the floor.

Begin to move slowly.
Move your toes, fingers, roll the legs, open and close the hands, roll the head from side to side.

Roll over on to your side and sit up.
Smile!



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