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Softening the Mind into the Heart

Updated: Sep 2, 2021

Many spiritual traditions recognise the heart as a place of generosity, compassion, our inner home. Our society is so driven by intellectual outcomes and external markers, and our minds are so full and busy, that we forget to take time to reflect, and feel into our hearts wisdom.

Wollongong Meditation Course
Image courtesy of Lacy Martin

Yoga meditation “Dharana” practice offers us the opportunity to dive inwards and clear the cobwebs that keep us stuck and acting from our habitual tendencies. It’s the sense of inner spaciousness that may be created through regular practice over an extended period that builds resilience and efficacy over our inner landscape.

“Your heart sees by its own light.

In meditation, adore the subtle fire

The light that you see by

Is the light that comes from inside.”

~ Lorin Roche, The Radiance Sutras

I’m reminded, and can hear my dear teacher's voice sharing the truth that our mind is programmed to go towards the darkness. The mind he says, always wants to take us towards suffering. So with this truth in mind, where we place our mind is of utmost importance to our wellbeing.

Sanskrit is the ancient language that the teachings of Yoga are transmitted through. The Sanskrit word Nyāsa means a special type of placing or entrusting. Anāhāta cakra is located in our energetic system close to the physical heart. The word Anāhāta can be translated to mean the unstruck, the chord that keeps resonating without end. At this level it’s the energetic heart space that is untouched by events and dualities, this heart is unbeaten and unwounded. I am so looking forward to sharing the practice of “Anāhāta Nyāsa”or placing our awareness in the heart.

विशोका वा ज्योतिष्मती ॥३६॥

viśokā vā jyotiśmatī ||

By meditating on this place of serenity and radiant intelligence.

In the Yoga Sūtra 1:36, Sage Patañjali likens this place to an un-flickering light. He suggests to bring the mind out of suffering (anxiety, depression, anger) we meditate on the place that is luminous, full of light, beyond any pain. I’m recalling the rose gold effulgent light of dawn, this holy time “Brahma muhurt” is the most potent time to meditate.

The practice I'm sharing aims to infuse all layers of our being with this energy through movement, breath, sound and divine gestures. Like a dancer fully immersed in the steps, the ritual and the focus becomes us, we become one with it, perhaps the “I” experiencing it may even dissolve.

Our spiritual practice offers the tools and techniques to move from mentally driven activity to heartfelt action. Our commitment is a contribution to life, humanity, and our planet. I invite you to take care of your system, and to accept the invitation to live as a loving presence in our world. May your practice offer you a passageway into your heart's wisdom.

To learn and experience more you are invited to join Rachel Nokes for a 6-week introduction into Yoga meditation here in Wollongong through her course “Softening the Mind into the Heart”. Bookings can be made from our Events page. The course runs on Wednesday mornings at 6.30am – 7.30am starting on 21st April.

Rachel infuses her love for classical yoga inspired by the teachings of TVK Desikachar and Krishnamacharya with bhakti, chanting and ayurveda. Rachel’s extensive experience as a Professional Counsellor and Ayurvedic practitioner and her deep passion for Yoga Therapy assists her in taking a fully comprehensive approach to wellbeing.

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