Tending Your Energetic Yard
As I prepare for Expanding Inward’s event next month, I find myself more aware of what I call my energetic yard. Although I have some favorite practices for keeping it clean and clear, I enjoyed reviewing some other practices that I share with others in my classes. Thought I would share some with you, in an excerpt from my Energy Play workbook:
“Although you might not be able to biologically see energy, it is fairly simple to develop an awareness of it. Begin by suspending any disbelief that it exists. Then imagine you have an elliptical sphere of energy surrounding you, extending to about arms length in all directions. I like to refer to this energy field as my “energetic yard”.
Feel into your energy yard with your hands and with your mind’s eye. Imagine the edges as barriers that you control, allowing some things in but not others. You are the gate-keeper. You get to choose how permeable or solid this barrier is. Sometimes it will be important to make the boundary very solid, like a protective wall. Other times you will want it to be quite permeable, allowing for an intimate energy exchange. But always it is present and yours to manage. You will rarely completely open the gates. It is vital to practice the shift from permeable to solid and back in order to become skillful at managing your yard.
Begin to notice when your yard feels full of junk. Some of it is yours and some may belong to others. There are many techniques to care for your energy yard. Develop a few that work well for you and use them daily. It is also helpful to do some sort of energy clearing following energetically charged experiences. Include your auras and chakras in your practice, becoming familiar with how they feel when they are in a healthy state and how they feel when they need attention. Choose one or two exercises from the following to begin your daily practice. Eventually you may come up with your own energy yard clearing, tending and boundary-setting practices.
Wu Ji Standing Posture
This stance brings the body into balance, connects us easily to the energy flow around us, and allows energy to flow through us unimpeded. Wu Ji means “Completely devoid of worries, thought or desires” and implies readiness. To begin, stand comfortably with your feet shoulder-width apart. Connect your entire foot to gravity. Make sure your toes are pointed straight ahead, feet parallel. There is a gentle, relaxed bend to the knees and they tend to push lightly outwards as opposed to collapsing inwards. The pelvis is tucked slightly so the lower spine is straight. The shoulders are loose and relaxed, not raised up, hands hang loosely at the sides. The head is held up as if suspended by a string. Breathing is done through the nose and is slow, soft, and deep. Eyelids are soft, and gazing is forward toward a point in front of the body but in soft focus. Finally, smile softly at your heart.
Wu Ji Meditation Exercise
Stand in Wu Ji Posture as you complete the following exercise.
Part A: Beginning the meditation
1. Follow your breath with your mind, feeling where it goes inside of you. Any time you find your mind wandering, just notice that and then bring your awareness back to following your breath.
2. Slowly scan your body from head to feet looking for any tension or discomfort. If any is found, use the mind to gently guide the breath there and as you exhale, imagine the tension flowing down and releasing into the Earth, dispersing.
Part B: Focusing to activate specific energy centers
1. Become aware of your feet and their connection to the Earth. Imagine that you are inhaling strong, clean energy from the Earth into the Bubbling Well points of your feet, and exhaling used, turbid energy back into the Earth. Do this for 8 to 36 breaths.
2. Next let the energy from the Earth travel up the legs and into the lower dan tien located beneath the navel. This is our center of inner strength and power. Imagine that you are inhaling pure, healing energy into your dan tien, letting it fill your entire lower abdomen. Exhale, purging any unclean energy from this center. Do this for 8 to 36 breaths.
3. Move the focus of your mind to the heart center located in the middle of the chest. This is our center of love and compassion. Imagine that you are inhaling purified energy into the heart center. Exhale, cleansing the heart and surrounding yourself with the feeling of compassion. Do this for 8 to 36 breaths.
4. Move the focus of your mind to the 3rd eye center located between the eyebrows in the middle of the forehead. This is our center of higher consciousness. Imagine that you are inhaling clear and focused energy into the 3rd eye center. Exhale, cleansing the mind and connecting with the consciousness of the Universe. Do this for 8 to 36 breaths.
5. Now bring the focus of your mind back to the lower dan tien, the area just below the navel. Imagine a warm flow of energy filling this center. As you both inhale and exhale, imagine a channel of energy extending upwards from the dan tien to the heart center, and continuing up to the 3rd eye center. This connects our body, spirit, and mind. Maintain this connection for 8 to 36 breaths.
6. Move the focus of your mind to the palms of your hands. Imagine breathing into the Lao Gong point at the center of your palms and also exhaling from this point. Feel your hands filling and becoming surrounded in warm qi. Do this for 8 to 36 breaths.
7. Finally, simply stand and follow your breath. Allow yourself to feel the energy flowing in and around your body. Do this until you feel finished.
Qi Gong- Style Clearing
NOTE: During this exercise we imagine the excess energy “junk” flowing out into the earth. This is not a problem for the earth! She is the great composter of all things, including energy. The energy will quickly be neutralized and available as “Qi”, life-force energy, once again.
1. Begin standing, noticing how your energy field seems right now. Take a deep cleansing breath to begin.
2. Reach your fingertips up as high as you can. Imagine cleansing white light of the universe flowing into your fingertips and into your body.
3. With your fingers spread, bring your hands slowly down in a “sweeping” sort of gesture, as if you are swiping through the front of your energy field. Move slowly down the front of your body all the way down to your feet. Imagine the excess energy from the front of your body flowing down and out into the earth.
4. Now, just to check it out for fun, see if you can feel the energy your hands have collected; it may feel like sticky cotton candy or gooey mud. Now flick your fingers toward the earth to cleanse them of any excess energy they have collected. See if your fingers feel different now.
5. Reach up again, imagining the cleansing white light flowing into your outstretched fingers. This time imagine sweeping through the center of your body. In your mind’s eye, see the energy flowing down and out into the earth. When you get to your feet, again flick your fingers toward the earth to clean them off.
6. Reach up a third time, imagining your spread fingers sweeping through the energy field behind you. This isn’t really physically possible—our arms don’t work that way. So just use your imagination. It is just as good; even better! And in your mind’s eye, see that excess energy flowing down and out into the earth. When you imagine getting down to your heels, again flick your fingers toward the earth to clear them.
7. Stand and notice how you are feeling now. Take a deep cleansing breath to complete the exercise.
This is another simple technique and can be done anywhere. First, calm your thoughts, ground and center. Imagine colorful rose blossoms (or another flower variety) beginning to populate your energy field. Imagine more and more blossoms appearing around you in all directions, front and back, right and left, above and below you. When you feel that your energy field is quite full enough with blossoms, count down from 5 to 1 and then imagine the blossoms exploding into petals. The petals fly everywhere, then begin to gently settle Earth-ward, brushing your skin and clearing your energy field as they float down. When they reach the ground, watch them as they slowly sink into the Earth and disappear. Feel how clear and clean your energy field seems now. Sometimes I feel like colors are brighter or like my visual “windshield” is cleaner after this exercise.
This post was written by Wren Anjali