Summer Yoga: Fire in your Belly - Joy in Your Heart
What a joy to have such a prolonged spell of warm sunny days – it’s like the summers we remember as children. So much so, that it has taken me a few weeks to get this blog together as I really didn’t want to sit indoors at a computer and miss out on the sunny outdoor weather and nature.
So, June-July-August is when we engage in the Summer practices, the quality of which is FIRE.
The two main meridians related to fire is HEART & SMALL INTESTINE.
*has its own nervous system
* has strong decision-making capacity - makes decision before the brain
*has its own intelligence – constantly deciding what nutrients are good for us and what to discard
*electromagnetic field generated by the heart is biggest in body – radiates as much as 15’ out
*its radiance spreads out into every cell and expresses itself in creativity, interactions and capacity for communications
*supreme manager, overseeing all the workings of body mind
*its energy inextricably linked with the life principle, as its rhythm is our life giver
*most extensive part of digestion takes place
*where we sort out what’s important and what’s not
ENERGETIC QUALITIES for H+SI
Rules the blood
Blood is the YIN aspect of CHI
CHI gives up capacity to respond; blood gives us ability to be comfortable and be still
Out of balance = poor circulation, cold hands/feet, hot flashes, heartburn, digestive problems, varicose veins, haemorrhoids or heart disease
Connected to our sense of TASTE and corresponds to the tongue
The fire element is the one we make the call on a million situations day after day. This element is also home to the trickiest energy system in the body, the Triple Warmer (sometimes called the triple heater).
TRIPLE WARMER ENERGY SYSTEM
The triple warmer is a complex and dynamic energy system, just one of the 9 energy systems that functions in our bodies. In addition to feeding the ADRENALS and THYROID, it governs 3 cavities of the torso called the Three Burners:
Low burner at the reproductive organs;
Middle is digestive organs;
Lower is heart/lungs.
TW is responsible for distributing energies among the 3 burners and help them function in a web like harmony. It governs many immune activities along with the Fight-Flight-Freeze response, therefore an enormous amount of control over body, releasing power chemicals & hormones. If they aren’t fully used up for the FFF response, they cause a continual breakdown in the body’s ability to return to a neutral relaxation response, the required state for the body to heal & repair & thrive. The TW needs to be nurtured and soothed so we are not easily triggered when stressed. For this reason, we choose Energy Medicine Yoga practices that calm, sooth and balance these energies so they can move into its Radiant Circuits qualities, which supports us in accessing the energies of healing, joy, love, bliss. The TW is a very powerful energy to have as an ally.
The Psychology of Fire
Fire is the element that makes us feel the most exalted in our lives, it is where the element of love, joy and inspiration live. We do need fire in our lives but as always, a balance, a slow burn, so we don’t burn out. So, practices that balance us away from ANXIETY-PANIC-OVERWHELM towards INSPIRATION-JOY, felt from the heart centre.
The Physiology of Fire
In this summer series of classes, we choose Fire poses (Asanas) that stimulate the fire energies are extensions, inversions, heart openers & core work. The digestive fire (Agni) is extremely important. According to Ayurveda (Science of Life & sister science to Yoga), is the key to overall health when it is balanced and contained in the belly. A fire in a fire place, or a candle, offers heat, light and warmth, while a wild fire ripping through forest is destructive. They key for handling wild fires is to bring it into a controlled burning. This is our personal goal with our inner fire, to increase its strength/power so we have ‘fire in our belly’ contained. Then our digestive fire is ignited, our solar energy is increased, and our personal power strengthened. When this solar centre is strong, we can then ignite the next energy centre of the heart – fire bridges the two. When the fire energies have ignited the heart, we are open to love. The strength and love we build helps us to withstand the challenges and difficulties in daily life, including loss. To love and to lose and to maintain your equanimity and resilience requires and open heart.
I hope you can join us for the Summer Fire practices with fire in your belly and love in your heart!