As humans, we seem to be in a type of prison. Our unconscious thoughts are like a warden that directs our activity. Our mind is the prisoner. Our unconscious feelings represent the iron-like bars that keep us trapped.
Have you noticed that we all do things that don’t make sense? We know they don’t make sense and yet we do them anyway. Most people seem to overindulge in something. For some it's food, others it’s work/career, some its alcohol/drugs, some it’s TV, and the list goes on. For some, the overindulgence is based on a mind pattern that leads to imbalance, for example, over-accommodating. Either consciously or unconsciously, we try to satisfy a hole that is insatiable.
What is this hole? We could call it discontentment, dissatisfaction, craving/aversion, not accepting what is, or just plain unhappiness.
How can we arise from being kept a hostage in this prison of our minds?
A – Align
R – Relax
I – Intend
S – Settle
E – Expand
The word align comes from the Latin ‘lineare’ meaning to "reduce to a straight line" [i]. Chiropractors and many other health professionals realize that when our bodies are out of alignment, then we invite disease. Spiritual teachers know that aligning the body, mind and spirit is essential to waking up.
Relaxation is vital to our health and life energy. Over-stressing seems to be at epidemic levels. For instance, a 2019 study reported that in the U.S alone, the total cost of stress to employers runs around $300 billion annually. [ii]
There has been much written and discussed on the power of intention. It is important to set a conscious intention before we act. If we don’t, then we are more likely to stay in the jail of our unconscious mind and just run on autopilot, often repeating similar types of unhealthy behavior. Conscious and wise intentions lead to a healthier mind, which leads to the cultivation of chi/ki/life energy, which leads to strength.
Settle means sinking into our center. In the ancient art of qigong (a moving meditative art whose purpose is to cultivate chi), the center is described as a point called the ‘tan tiem’ or ‘tan diem’ that is three finger-widths below your navel and is said to contain the original qi/chi/ki that was passed on to you by your parents at the time of your birth. Thus it is our origination point. Many spiritual traditions such as Aikido, Kouk Sun Do, Tai Chi, etc. focus on this point in order to stay centered. Numerous practices say that this center point is our ultimate connection to the infinite, the quantum field, source, divinity, or whatever name that we give to that which is really unnamable.
Expansion represents abundance, prosperity and making the most of life, versus contracting and making the least of life.
These principle are important foundations to freedom, the antithesis of bondage.
So let’s apply these principles and ARISE!!!