The Earth has an amazing ability to heal. Not only itself, but every living thing that dwells within, on and above its surface. The very word, ‘Earth,’ feels solid, stable, fertile. It is the place we return to, again and again, after every practice and every instance in our lives that we extend beyond our normal boundaries. It is our home. The Earth sequence provides that moment for us to return home and restore balance before going above and beyond once more.
“Bowing to the teaching that lies deep within our hearts,” Kate says. “The teaching is forgiveness, and forgiveness starts with ourselves.”
So it begins with the Heart Opening Breath-Body Link. This is a kind moment that brings the focus inward. Stretching arms out with the inhale to embrace the world, and drawing the healing energy of the Earth back to your heart on the exhale.
From here we move to plank pose. Notice the strength in your arms, shoulders and back, the capacity of your hands to support the weight of your body. We don’t use our arms for this task very often. It is an untapped source of grounding energy. As you hover just above the Earth, you are aware of the draw. You have the strength to push away, but you are still connected, grounded, and the call to come to the Earth whispers soft in the back of your mind.
Kate calls you to give in to your senses by lowering steadily and gently to the Earth and then flowing into upward facing dog. Your legs and hips connect to the Earth, yet your trunk; arms, neck and head extend from the Earth into space. Then on to child’s pose. In this moment, the last of your external thoughts are dissolving. All of your attention becomes inwardly focused.
“Opening the windows, opening the doors, letting all of the light come into the heart,” Kate says.
In this moment, you are reminded that your body is the home in which your mind, heart and soul reside. You know that you mustn’t close yourself off. You must instead care for this dwelling and remain open to all the light and possibility that resides just outside your door.
As you move from downward dog to up-dog, Kate draws your attention to your body “swinging on the breath.” You are reminded of the movement and evolution of all things: day bows to night, the flow of the tides, the dissolving of one season into another; and how in all of that change there is cleansing, forgiveness, and renewal.
Locust pose allows you to feel nurtured by the earth supporting the base of your structure as the gentle breeze floats through your windows and doors. You are mindful of the strength that lies within, and the ability to extend up and out to the universe while staying grounded within yourself. Physically rooted to the Earth, grounded in your thoughts and yet within this support lies the ability to fly!
Savasana extends this feeling of stability. Always connected to the Earth, the place that welcomes and nurtures you again and again. You are home. Kate stands at the door and ushers you into your newly renovated structure.
“Welcoming this new body, this new breath: clear, calm, open, free,” she says.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Heather Gregory is an avid Namaste yogini and has been practicing the sequences nearly every day for three years. We enlisted Heather to embark on Sadhana, our 26 -week journey, and blog about each sequence. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org