If we're asking for equality as feminine, we must listen to the masculine (silently) asking the same.
Some of the males in my life have been sharing similar thoughts on what a man is supposed to be or how to act based on what society has breed - similar thoughts to what's shared in this article https://medium.com/.../what-does-it-mean-to-be-a-man-in.... These men also said they are exhausted. That they wish to be free of these societal ways and that it doesn't make them weak or unworthy. It makes them stronger.
In the yoga and wellness world many men don't feel welcomed. The "type" of man (or men) who do tend to look or act a certain way - thin, tall, Caucasian, "hippie", "feminine", or similar to such.
As women gather together and rise up in society (I'm focusing mainly on American) asking for equality and to be seen as independent strong creatures, we must allow men to do the same but to what they'd call an uprise to heal and be allowed to share their hearts and truths because with equality comes change on all sides, levels, and aspects.
What are your thoughts after reading this article? Leave a comment below and let's dive into some deep honest conversation.
When I say Body I am talking about the physical body.
When I say Emotions I am talking about feelings, how one feels - happy, sad, angry, anxious, loved, or a sentiment that surfaces from a thought, memory, reflection, or future event to come.
When I say Energy I am talking about breath (prana), how an emotion makes one feel (hyper, sad, depressed, excited), and/or movement within the body. For this particular article energy related to emotions/feelings.
This topic will get one thinking about how energy (normally related to negative emotions) can get stuck within the body in certain parts - hips, stomach, back - to name a few places. Usually energy related to an event in life (for example a traumatic event) causing whatever feelings that arise during that time to get caught within the body if they are not processed properly. For example, if someone is bullied as a child and they never receive an apology from that bully. The person never has a chance to process, heal, and forgive the bully. Any feelings that upset the person may get buried deep down in the mind or body. This could cause future unrelated events to upset the person, leave them in a state of fear, low confidence, or anger. As you can see it is quite important for forgiveness, peace, and love to be a part of one's life. When this is unable to occur naturally it's important to use movement, breath, meditation, and other forms of self healing to help move negative emotions from getting stuck within one's body (the physical, mental, and spiritual body - which can begin with the physical).
In the yoga community there is a lot of discussion around energy (also known as emotions or relating to) stuck in the lower body and its release through forms of Yoga like Yin, or Restorative. These forms tend to focus on opening the lower body. I recently did a podcast touching on this subject matter. Which brings attention to not only opening the lower body but the center. How it can also hold (negative) emotions, release emotions, and heal one from opening the core, center, or abdominals. This can also and usually include the lower back, side, chest, and obliques.
Emotional energy or stuck energy usually caught within the lower body, like the hips or groin, can be the following: fear, anxiety, or sadness.
Emotional energy or stuck energy usually caught within the core, heart center, or abdominals can be the following: grief, tension, or stress.
For each area of the body different types of emotions can get stuck. So just as it is important to release emotions from the lower body, it's important to do so for the upper body.
There are various ways to release these emotions from within the body - breathing exercises, meditations, physical activities like walking, jogging, yoga, and streching. It's wonderful to incorporate various types of activities to promote the release of stuck energy from within different parts of the body to find a sense of calm, peace, and love.
As I've started diving deeper into my own yoga practice the question "Which way should my mat lay?" has repeatedly come to mind. So I did what anyone would do- I Googled it.
There were many different reasons for why yogis and practitioners face their mat a certain direction. Some face their mat in whatever direction gives them room to move freely during physical practice. Others stood facing true north to welcome the sun, life, or connection to the universe to their practice. While a couple articles I read mentioning people who liked their mat to face East. This also welcomes the sun and Divine into their practice (whether meditative or physical).
Some directions seem to have similarities for why a mat or body faces a certain direction. Here is a review of my findings.
Mat or Body facing North: Pulls one in the right direction of life. Welcomes stability, one to be unshakable, keeps goals in mind, and open's self up to guidance from the universe or Divine.
Mat or Body facing East: Related to the mind - retention, memory, and meditation. It is also the direction the sun rises. So it welcomes sun light, guidance, and protection into one's life. For some it's the direction for prayer.
Mat or Body facing South: Looks inside one's self. This direction you want to leave things behind. It also relates to sleeping or physical death (of the body). It's going within the individual. Said to be good for meditation when you need physical relaxation.
Mat or Body facing West: Sun sets in the west. Leaving the day, fear, negativity, and other not so great happenings behind you. Find rest to refresh.
Some last considerations:
Don't get caught up if you can't physically have your mat facing a certain direction.
Spatial considerations are something to keep in mind.
If you're in a class you're not going to want to cause a fuss if the teacher has their mat facing a certain direction. They're setting their mat in the best direction for participants to see and hear them.
When in your own space feel free to take a moment, get quiet, and come into awareness. This will allow you to feel which direction calls you to set up your mat.
Finally, breathe and open your mind and body to the world around you as you dive deep into your practice.
I'm Carmita, I enjoy writing, yoga, meditation, and spreading the word about how to deepen connection with food, earth, and animals. So we can understand how we all are connected and learn how to co-exist with nature and the world.