On Overdrive? Try This.

pinwheelAre you all feeling the amping of energies lately just as I am? Astrologically, we are in very interesting times. Time itself seems to be speeding up, information (and misinformation) is a constant onslaught, and change is not only imminent but mandatory. We’re all being asked to up our game. If we don’t take time out to empty and find our way back to neutral, we’re going to have a harder and harder time keeping up.

Toning is such a great way to clear your mind, body, and spirit of all the brouhaha. Even if you practice the following technique just minutes a day, you’ll feel the impact.

This particular exercise is adapted from one I learned from my mentor, Dr. Gene Nathan. It consists of three sounds and three centers:

SOUND                               CENTER
Ah                                            heart
Om                                          dan tien (or lower belly)
Shh                                          forehead

Begin by placing your hands on your heart. Tone the sound ‘Ah’ aloud on any comfortable pitch. Do this three times. Then move your hands to your dan tien. Here you will tone the sound ‘Om” with an emphasis on the ‘mmm’. Do this at a lower pitch than the ‘ah’. Finally, place your hands on your forehead. Here, you sound a ‘Shh’. Repeat this cycle, three times at each center, for at least three cycles.

After each tone, notice how your energy is shifting. Take your time. Notice especially the connection that occurs between each center, each helping to reinforce and strengthen the others. And notice how the ‘shh’ quiets the rattled mind. Enjoy!

Avatar “OM” Circle

  • pinwheelI was inspired after watching the movie Avatar for the second time recently to try something new in my toning group today. It was an experiment that went quite well, so I thought I’d share it with you.

In the movie, there is a scene when the tribal people are offering a healing to the dying scientist. In the scene, they are sitting cross legged in circles around this magical tree, each person with his or her arms around the shoulders of the neighbor to the right and left. They are swaying back and forth in unison while singing a sacred healing chant.

I adapted this moving idea for Toning for Peace. At the Light Center in Black Mountain, the geodesic dome has a vortex right in its center. So we made a circle around that sitting cross legged on the floor. We discussed out intent…what it was we wanted to create or evoke with our sounding. We sat close enough together so as to put our arms around one another’s shoulders. Some folks weren’t physically comfortable with this, so they had the option to place their hands on the neighbor’s knees instead. Obviously, this wasn’t meant to be an exercise in discomfort!

We then practiced moving in a circle with the energy flowing first left to right and then right to left. We waited to sense the natural shifting of the energy currents.

Once we felt ready, we closed our eyes, focused on our intent to celebrate love and balance, and began to OM. I had spoken earlier about how to OM, that one should give equal time to the O and the M. I also mentioned that it didn’t have to be one long, sustained OM but could be a pulsing series of short OMs.

The exercise was beautifully meditative; the combination of movement, touch or connection, and sound was powerful. It unified the group in a magical way quite quickly.

One person did suggest afterward that it be done standing up. I’m sure this would have been fine too and more comfortable for certain folks. So, as always, be flexible with how toning practices are done. Honor the body, not the idea.

Do you have a toning idea to share?

Voice Play: Treat for the Inner Child

pinwheelFor a child, being free with the voice is a natural thing. We animate our dolls and trucks. We laugh and make sounds freely. As we get older, it is no longer okay to make strange, silly sounds. We have to be serious. When things do escape our lips, others look at us like we have two heads (unless we have the privilege of playing with children and hiding behind such an excuse). But play is a means to freeing our voice and our creativity. It shouldn’t stop altogether or change just because we reach a certain age.

Here is an fun exercise in voice play I’ve often used in Toning groups and a great party game.

Think of a phrase and say it with the group. For example, “I love chicken feathers in my soup.” The sillier the better!

  • Repeat the phrase aloud normally.
  • Now say it in different ways. Try whispering it like it is a very big secret you don’t want others to hear…or maybe a secret you really do want others to hear. Notice any difference?
  • Now yell it at the top of your lungs. What does that feel like?
  • Say it in a very deep voice. Come on ladies; you can do it!
  • Say it in a very high voice. Gentlemen, it’s only a game!
  • Say it as fast as you can. Oh, come on! Faster!
  • Say it both high and fast, like you’ve just inhaled helium.
  • Now say it high and very slow, like you’re slowly emptying of helium. What are you feeling?
  • Say it low and fast, like a tribal cartoon character.
  • Now say it low and very slow, like a broken tape-recorder. Having fun?

If you tried this alone, good for you! Your inner child is now glowing. If you tried this with friends, even better for you! Nothing like laughing your head off with people you love!

 

Balancing & Purifying the 5 Elements: A Tibetan Bon Technique

tingsToday’s toning at the Light Center was so yummy! What a great group of people…deep listeners with open hearts and open voices. After connecting with each of the elements (earth, water, fire, air, ether) with chi gong, we practiced balancing the five elements with this Bon series of mudra and mantra:

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ImTEB35new0]

We wrapped up the meditation with the mantra of all the elements, A YAM RAM MAM KHAM DROM DU. By then, we were all so ready to create with each other in a deep freestyle toning session.

Give it a try! It’s easy, feels great, and works wonders.

Edgar Cayce: Sound Healer?

Edgar Cayce, known as the sleeping prophet, was a highly psychic individual in the late 18 and early 1900’s. I have known about Cayce for sometime, though my knowledge is limited. For example, I owe my caster oil pack practice and rose water and glycerine spray to him and his healing visions.

But I just recently learned that Cayce was also aware of the power of sound as a healing tool. He taught that one could harmonize with the creative energy within through chanting i-e-o-u-e-i-o-umh. He taught us that chant was a means of experiencing an inner reality of color, harmony and emotion. He understood that music had the power to renew us from deep within. I was so excited to discover his teachings on sound and hope to find out more.

Cayce said that our bodies are “the temple of the Living God”. Yes! We are indeed resonance chambers that resound with the sounds of our life. Do we pollute our temple and neglect it, or do we honor it as Holy and respect it?

Toning, whether by yourself or in a group, is a superb way to not only acknowledge and connect with your temple, but to commune with the creative energy there, enhancing and raising your own personal vibration.