Sacred Space - By Laurella Fox-PittOne of the things I love about yoga is that you can practice it anywhere. As a friend once said (in his Swedish accent ) “All you need is your little mat” It made me smile, he knew nothing about yoga but even as an onlooker he could see you just needed the space of your mat to retreat on to to do your practice. What he may have missed however was the sacredness of our little mat.
Over the years I have practiced Yoga and meditated with many different teachers and communities and one of the messages that is always the same is...... have your own sacred space, an alter, a corner of a room, a deity, a Buddha. What ever it is that speaks to you, stones, flowers, little trinkets you've collected from your travels that make your space your own. My teacher Shiva Rea encourages us to continuously refresh our alter space so it evolves with our practice and honours the cycles of life. That may be the seasons, life commitments or for women our moon cycle.
If I am practicing in the Space element then I may keep my alter very simple, white linen with stones and a candle or if I want more creativity and fluidity in my life I call on the water element and drape my alter in a blue silk scarf and place a picture of the sea next to some shells. It amazes me what I can dig up in my little house. Each offering is inspiring and a true gift to the gods. Don't be daunted by having to create a work of art each time to come to your mat! It can be as simple as lighting a candle and placing it at the top of your mat. If you are on the road then maybe it a piece of jewellery, a heart shaped stone or a tiny travelling Ganesh that lives in your wash bag. I practice yoga because I like my body to be strong, fit and vital and with that I discovered this exhilarating aliveness, a vibration that felt amazing. I knew I wanted more of it so I kept practicing, but sometimes it was so hard, like running a steeplechase, so many hurdles! Then one day I just sat cross legged and chanted a simple Om and was overcome with a beautiful sense of peace , of stillness and space and I knew I had stumbled on gold. It's not easy digging for gold but it's worth it.
Just like anything that is rewarding, there are challenges so you need to give yourself the best possible chance, having a beautiful alter space that mirrors your hearts desire can only be a good thing. It's sets a clear intention and with that clarity comes a deeper more meaningful practice. Now that you have created a place in your home for your yoga, meditation or self practice of any kind, you have created a sanctuary to allow space in your life so you can receive and grow. We often fill our lives with too much stuff, mentally and physically ,so there is no space for us to blossom and evolve. Although beautiful, wild gardens are often the hardest to manage because they are just so bustling and busy.
So enjoy the sacred space you have created, let it make room for peace and calmness but also an abundance of joy and creativity.
Article by Laurella Fox-Pitt @wildlaural_ http://wildlaurel.blogspot.co.uk/