Happy happy, joy, joy! I love building practices that are simple and sweet that bring me into a state of reverence & devotion. This also leads to feeling a sense of contentment, which makes me feel so happy and joyous. And yes, you can find practices to bring these "feels" too.
My love of Ritual is pretty obvious if you know me, in reality or in social media (go to my instragrm page if you'd like some inspo, I'm sarasloves). I really enjoy taking things that are already in the house, or on the ground, and making little altars around my home. Thank goodness my husband "gets" me!
These little dots around my home, these little special arrangements encourage me to remember my practice and what and whom I hold dear. I read somewhere that if you don't live in an intentional way, that life will do it for you. There's certainly no shortage of choices; courses to do, books to buy and read, people to hang with, show's to watch, places to go, workshops to do. There's just a few for you, that I come across regularly.
And if you want to go a bit deeper, the Vedic text called the Bhagavad Gita encourages us to make the every day things we do sacred. That might be cooking, bathing, gardening. There's so many opportunities to practice life with some reverence and thread some of the sacred into it too.
Here's a few ideas for you, remembering its best to start with what your already "into" or "captured" by.
I love morning and evening ritual as they can set the scene for the start of the day, and the evening ritual is a nice way to wind off from the busyness of the day.
Here's a morning suggestion:
Find somewhere to sit, that feels nice.
Light a candle, signifying the illuminating of what you hold dear.
Place your hand on your heart, feel its warmth.
Take a handful of calm and easy breaths.
Read an inspiring quote, or passage from a book.
Sit with the words and impressions.
Place your palms together at your heart,
Smile, and take this into your day.
And an evening suggestion:
Go outside and lay beneath the night sky.
Cover yourself with blankets and get comfy.
Let your gaze rest on the evening sky,
and let the stars and landscape of the night come to you.
Inhale the evening air, breathing in the night sky.
Exhale and let go, release the the day away.
When you do these, flavour them with what you love. You may like to start the day lying down watching the morning sky change, with a cup of tea or coffee. Maybe you'd prefer to light incense instead of a candle. Or if your really into crystals, place one outside and let it soak up the night sky and then collect it in the morning and carry it with you during the day, reminding you of the qualities of the night; introspection, wonder, quiet.
I'd love to hear what your up to? What lights you up? What little practices bring a sense of joy and wonder into the everyday.
There are many ways in Yoga to nourish and fill your tank. Each person can probably find at least a handful of ways to feel good through the practice of Yoga.
Lately, I've taken time to just sit outside, enjoying a warm drink and soaking up the warmth and feel of this glorious sunshine. Simple.
Did you know by just doing that, your nourishing and tending to yourself. Yes! I know, so simple but so much more. The Yogi's put names to 5 layers of our being, called Koshas. Sitting and soaking up the sunshine and breathing in the fresh air, is nourishment for two of these, your Annamaya Kosha and your Pranamaya Kosha, thats your skin or your most gross physical layer and your vital energy in non Sanskrit terms.
These koshas are subtle layers of our being, and are a way of looking after and nourishing ourselves, beyond the common lingo of “mind, body & spirit”.
If your looking to dive a bit deeper into the Koshas here are a small handful of practices (some of which you may already do) to get you started:
1. Soak up the sunshine (ahem, yes as mentioned above)
2. Breathe in the fresh air (special times; dawn and dusk)
3. Practice the Hum Sa Mantra (quietly saying to yourself; inhale Ham, exhale Sa)
4. Pick a Yoga Sutra, a poem, a value, set an intention and really feel into that, soak it up, embody it and let it become part of who you are and how you are in the world.
5. Find something in nature to be with that helps you settle into a sense of awe, a sense of honour and or reverence, for this magical planet we live on. Let yourself be omazed!
So just there, above are 5 sweet & simple practices. If you’d like to know more about these, Light On Life by BKS Iyengar is a great read. He was a householder like us, managing homes, feeding dogs, cooking meals. He shows us how to nourish these in ourselves, in our daily life. No moving to an ashram required!!
Sweet hugs to you.
Have a peek!