Earth, Water, Fire, Air or Ether, each month we will meet to explore one of the elements of our inner world, how to identify it, understand it, take care of it with some advice and gentle rituals.
This month, I propose to reconnect with our “ETHER” element, space, called “Akasha” in Sanskrit. It is the first of the 5 great elements of Ayurveda (the Pancha Mahabhutas). It is the essence of emptiness, the element that created and contains all the other elements of our world (air, fire, water, earth), which appeared, according to Hindu tradition, at the birth of the universe when the first sound Aum/om resounded. It is without doubt the most subtle element. It has no boundaries, no form, the ether has no limits. The Ether is present everywhere around us and within us, perceived through hearing, in the form of sound.
Akasha brings us the space of life, of creation, of resonance. It has no preferences and can accommodate everything. It helps us to accept our own situation and that of others.
Taking care of the ETHER element in us means cultivating our capacity to create, to give ourselves the space to be, to think, to express who we are. It offers us the capacity to evolve in consciousness, without putting up barriers, at this place where thought and emotions meet. The Ether allows us to develop our capacity to adapt and our openness, our letting go.
In yoga, the element Ether is linked to the 5th energy centre, our throat chakra, Vishudda in Sanskrit, the centre of communication. It is linked to the sacral chakra, also the place of emotions and creativity. It helps you to become aware of your life mission, as this is where you hear your inner voice. The harmonised throat chakra will allow you to express what is inside you (your desires, your needs, your emotions) and to listen/receive. The expression can be done through various forms: the voice, the way of being or even artistically.
By taking care of your Ether element, you will develop your ability to follow your dreams, to express who you are, in confidence, to resonate your being.
Me and the Ether element
Before I give you some healing rituals to cultivate your ETHER element, I suggest you take two minutes to ask yourself the following question:
What is my relationship to this element Ether/Space? Is it an element that I feel is very present in me? not enough? too much?
To help you dig deeper, ask yourself for example:
- Am I someone who easily expresses my emotions, my thoughts, who I am?
- Do I feel like the creator of my life, in line with my purpose?
- Am I connected to the notion of space, loving the new, the blank page where everything seems possible?
- Or on the contrary, do I find it difficult to hear and follow my desires and dreams?
- Am I often too much in control, afraid of the void and the unknown?
- Do I find it difficult to step out of my comfort zone, to trust in life, to believe in my capacity for creation and creativity?
- Or do I find it difficult to make my voice heard, literally (my voice is low, I cannot be heard well) and in life to express who I am?
If the answer to this second group of questions is “yes”, it means that you would benefit from strengthening your ETHER element.
Remember that it is all about balance: too much space can also be insecure and lead to a disconnection from reality. Each element must be balanced, to find an overall harmony.
How to take care of my Ether element?
4 rituals to cultivate self-expression and radiate who we are!
Ritual 1: Singing and the powers of sound
Dare to laugh and speak positive words, and especially dare to sing!
The throat chakra loves mantras and vibrations. Take advantage of every opportunity to sing: whether in the shower, in your car or on your bike, or when sharing with others, sing without restraint and with pleasure. It can be mantras, music you like or why not songs you write or invent yourself, in a space of freedom and creativity.
Singing is therapeutic: it releases our emotional charges, helps us to breathe better, and above all it allows us to express who we are. You make your inner voice resonate.
The sound of this 5th chakra is a sacred sound: Ham. You can close your eyes and chant this mantra while focusing on the sensations and vibrations in the throat. As if you were cleansing the throat of all its words/illnesses. And why not try a ‘sound bowl bath‘?
Ritual 2 : intuitive painting
To reconnect and welcome all your creativity, I propose to test a ritual that can be short but very powerful of intuitive painting.
The idea is not to look for aesthetics or even a notion of result, but rather to live the ritual as a meditation in movement, pleasant, fluid, listening to all your sensations and emotions, without barriers. This practice can be done to relax and calm down, to find an intuitive answer to a question or to express the state we are in (to be kept to ourselves or shared with others).
How to proceed?
Prepare a thick sheet of paper (300g/m²) and a few colours of paint that speak to you particularly at that moment. Choose 2 or 3 different brushes to be able to vary the effects according to the sensations you feel. I advise you to work with gouache for simplicity and speed (the colour settles quickly and is therefore more intense). You can also use pencils, Chinese ink etc…
Close your eyes, breathe deeply to connect with your emotions, then start. Instinctively put on the paper what comes to you: fine lines, wide lines, curves, circles, dotted lines, … patterns that you like. You can even use your fingers if you feel like it. Anything goes!
After about 5 or 10 minutes, put the brush down. Stop. Then take the time to observe your work. With a benevolent curiosity and a reading of what you have expressed.
Ritual 3 : lithotherapy and the powers of stones
It is the sky blue/turquoise colour that is linked to the fifth chakra; by favouring contact with stones of this colour, you will harmonise the throat chakra and encourage self-expression.
The main stones used to balance the throat chakra are turquoise, blue agate, aquamarine and blue quartz. Choose the stone that “calls to you”, you must feel good with it. In some stone shops, the salesmen also advise you according to your needs, as each of these light blue and turquoise stones has specific properties. It is interesting to see which stone you instinctively pick up in a shop, without knowing the benefits yet. You often pick up the one you need at that moment!
How to use the stones?
Either by placing the stone directly on your body at the throat chakra location, or by carrying it with you at all times (wearing a short necklace with an associated stone is ideal).
You can also take quiet times to breathe gently or meditate with the chosen stone in the palm of your hand, and let the light blue colour infuse the whole body.
Ritual 4: a meditation on the 5th chakra, listening to your inner voice
Sit comfortably, cross-legged or in a chair. The important thing is to keep your back straight and your chest open so that you can breathe well and let the energy flow freely. Close your eyes. Breathe gently to bring relaxation to the whole body.
Then bring your attention to your throat, where you are now visualising a beautiful turquoise light.
With each inhalation, this light grows and shines a little brighter. With each exhalation, it spreads a little more throughout this area. You can feel the light enveloping the throat, the vocal cords, the neck, to bring calm and to purify us. Breathe for several minutes visualising this light. The throat is as if cleansed; you release energetic and emotional blockages: words that have remained “in your throat”, unspoken words, unexpressed emotions. Everything that hinders the throat and speech is released. You now feel a new space in the throat, clear, bright, where your voice can resonate and express itself in an authentic and joyful way.
You can finish the meditation by reciting one or two affirmations in your head:
- “I express who I am”,
- “I have confidence”,
- “I believe in myself and my dreams”,
- “I communicate my emotions”,
- “I am the creator of my life”,
- “I radiate”.
And why not express out loud a word, a phrase, a song, a sound, that would come out naturally.
Smile and take good care of yourselves.
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