Category Archives: heart

More Hard Hitting Words From the Dalai Lama About the Mass Brainwashing of Society

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The 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet is always garnering a lot of attention, and for good reasons. Most recently, he told the world that simply praying is not the answer for the incident that occurred in Paris, as well as other similiar atrocities that seem to happen all over the globe. He stated that humans have created this problem, and now we are asking God to solve it, which makes no sense. If we created this mess, we should be the ones to solve it, not God.  His comments went viral as they resonated with so many people around the world who realize that action on a mass scale is required at this time to change the direction our planet seems to be going in.

Intertwined with the Paris attacks are the realities of war, and there is a great piece written on the Dalai Lama’s website site regarding the mass brainwashing of human beings. This is something we touch upon regularly on our website, especially when it comes to incidents of terrorism, war, and the creation of these groups who are carrying out these attacks all over the world.

“War and the large military establishments are the greatest sources of violence in the world. Whether their purpose is defensive or offensive, these vast powerful organizations exist solely to kill human beings. We should think carefully about the reality of war. Most of us have been conditioned to regard military combat as exciting and glamorous – an opportunity for men to prove their competence and courage. Since armies are legal, we feel that war is acceptable; in general, nobody feels that war is criminal or that accepting it is criminal attitude. In fact, we have been brainwashed. War is neither glamorous nor attractive. It is monstrous. Its very nature is one of tragedy and suffering.”(source)

This (above) statement really hits home. If you think about it, these vast and powerful organizations, and the military in general, “solely exist to kill human beings.” As the Dalai Lama touches upon, we are conditioned and made to believe that military service is something to be proud of. Sure, these men and women may be entering into the service in order to serve their country, with a tremendous amount of bravery and good hearted intentions, but what they do not know is that this global war on terrorism is a complete fabrication. The enemy they are made to believe they’re defending their country from is actually a product of their own country. As Dr. Michel Choissudovsky, University of Ottawa’s Emeritus Professor of Economics tells us, the global war on terrorism is completely fake and based on fake premises. Soldiers have been brainwashed into thinking that they are going after an enemy and defending their own country when that same enemy is fully supported and financed by the western military alliance, and as the Dalai Lama sates:

This is exactly why “we feel that war is acceptable,” because we are made to believe it’s a necessary course of action.

He then goes on to state that:

“We are so conditioned to see it as thrilling that we talk about this or that marvelous weapon as a remarkable piece of technology without remembering that, if it is actually used, it will burn living people. War also strongly resembles a fire in the way it spreads. If one area gets weak, the commanding officer sends in reinforcements. This is throwing live people onto a fire. But because we have been brainwashed to think this way, we do not consider the suffering of individual soldiers. No soldiers want to be wounded or die. None of his loved ones wants any harm to come to him. If one soldier is killed, or maimed for life, at least another five or ten people – his relatives and friends – suffer as well. We should all be horrified by the extent of this tragedy, but we are too confused.” (source)

The extent of this brainwashing is quite massive, and if we are going to stop the murder of other human beings and war in general, it is that ‘brainwashed’ soldier that needs to wake up. It is a human being pulling the trigger, giving the orders, and thinking that they are doing something good. We are the reason why war exists in the first place, we created it, we participate in it and we prolong it. Just imagine what would happen if every human being on the planet refused to participate in war? This is why we say change needs to come from within, and as more soldiers wake up to what’s really happening here, there will be more of them who refuse to go to war.

“No matter how malevolent or evil are the many murderous dictators who can currently oppress their nations and cause international problems, it is obvious that they cannot harm others or destroy countless human lives if they don’t have a military organisation accepted and condoned by society.” (source)

Some of these soldiers that are used by their corporate/big bank puppet masters are starting to wake up and speak out. Linked below is an article that provides two excellent examples, with some shocking information that many people are still waking up to (graphic footage warning).

Horrible & Numbing”: Chilling testimony from U.S. Air Force Drone Operator On His First Kill”

As far as this manufactured global war on terrorism, you can check out this article, among others:

Professors & Politicians Gather To Warn Us About The New World Order

The Dalai Lama Then goes on to speak about how expensive war is. This is something many people think about – the fact that the money pumped into the military, and the Department of Defense in the United States alone (including black the black budget) could completely alleviate  poverty and hunger on our planet.  That being said, money is made out of thin air, typed up on a computer screen and printed at will by the controlling elite.

We are talking about, as X Canadian Defense Minister Paul Hellyer states, “trillions, and I mean thousands of billions of dollars” that “have been spent on projects which both congress and the commander in chief no nothing about.” Welcome to what president Eisenhower called the military industrial complex where, as he warned us, the rise for misplaced power exists and will persist. What would he say about what’s happened today?

The point is, if we are going to use money as a tool, why not take that many and allocate it to provide food, shelter and clothing for everybody on the planet? The defense expenditures of a couple of countries alone could do this no problem.

“We should feel fed up with the violence and killing going on around us. If a human being is killed by an animal, it’s sad, but if a human being is killed by another human being it’s unthinkable. We have to make a special effort to think of each other as fellow human beings, as our brothers and sisters.” – Dalai Lama (source)

Thank you Dalai Lama for saying the things that you have said within the past few months.

By Arjun Walia / collective-evolution.com

You can read his full article HERE.

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20 Frida Kahlo Quotes to Touch the Core of Your Being

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Born Magdalena Carmen Frieda Kahlo y Calderón, she became one of Mexico’s greatest painters.

Kahlo contracted polio at the age of 6, had an almost deadly accident at the age of 18 and went on to marry Diego Rivera, the muralist and ultimate womanizer.

People who are close to me know the immense place that Frida holds in my heart and in my life. For me, she represents the pain every woman on earth is going through—be it physical, or emotional. Frida has proved to us how strong we can be and how much we can endure.

I empathize with the pain she went through. She suffered from the pain of infidelity. Diego, her comrade, her best friend and the first critic of her art, was never her husband or ‘hers’–-as Frida says. He belonged to many women and mostly he belonged to himself only. This—in return—sent Frida through endless, dire suffering that only the pages of her diary witnessed.

When it comes to art, I am fond of many artists. But never before have I witnessed emotions and thoughts expressed so bluntly and poignantly on a canvas. Not only does Kahlo’s art fascinate me, but also her words. Reading what she said, we can sense the intensity of her agony, yet, at the same time, the greatness of her hope.

Having said that, we can say that Frida is an icon of patience, endurance and strength:

“Feet, what do I need you for when I have wings to fly?”

“There have been two great accidents in my life. One was the trolley, and the other was Diego. Diego was by far the worst.”

“I paint self-portraits because I am so often alone, because I am the person I know best.”

“I used to think I was the strangest person in the world but then I thought there are so many people in the world, there must be someone just like me who feels bizarre and flawed in the same ways I do. I would imagine her, and imagine that she must be out there thinking of me, too. Well, I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it’s true I’m here, and I’m just as strange as you.”

“You didn’t understand what I am. I am love. I am pleasure. I am essence. I am an idiot. I am alcoholic. I am tenacious. I am. I simply am. You are a sh*t my love.”

“They thought I was a Surrealist, but I wasn’t. I never painted dreams. I paint my own reality.”

“Nothing is absolute. Everything changes, everything moves, everything revolves, everything flies and goes away.”

“I drank because I wanted to drown my sorrows, but now the damned things have learned to swim.”

“I am not sick. I am broken. But I am happy to be alive as long as I can paint.”

“I think that little by little I’ll be able to solve my problems and survive.”

“At the end of the day, we can endure much more than we think we can.”

“I love you more than my own skin.”

“How can I call him my Diego? He never was and never will be mine, he only belongs to himself.”

“Nothing is worth more than laughter. It is strength to laugh and to abandon oneself, to be light.”

“Take a lover who looks at you like maybe you are magic.” ~ Marty McConnel (about Frida Kahlo)

“The only thing I know is that I paint because I need to, and I paint whatever passes through my head without any other consideration.”

“I cannot speak of Diego as my husband because that term, when applied to him, is an absurdity. He never has been, nor will he ever be, anybody’s husband.”

“I leave you my portrait so that you will have my presence all the days and nights that I am away from you.”

“I want to be inside your darkest everything.”

“I hope the exit is joyful and I hope never to return.”

“… and I hope never to return.”  Written on the last pages of her diary, Frida bluntly affirms she has no intentions of reincarnating in another lifetime. Her pain was too great to want to experience physical life again. She physically left Diego, her lovers and her friends. But up until today, Frida is still here. She lives in every painting of hers, in every portrait hung on the wall. She lives in the spirit of every woman who is going through miscarriage, physical pain and emotional difficulties.

Frida gives us the hope that we will overcome any calamity we might face. She tells us to laugh, to love hard, to survive no matter what. Frida shows us the importance of drinking tequila, lighting a cigarette and living as if we are dying tomorrow.

Frida kahlo, a woman, an icon, forever in our hearts.

Viva La Frida!

http://www.elephantjournal.com/2015/12/20-frida-kahlo-quotes-to-touch-the-core-of-your-being/

SEKHEM REIKI

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When I first got initiated to Reiki, my wonderful teacher Fiona Young spoke of Sekhem. She told us she would initiate us with the symbols of Sekhem as well and attune our hands and our feet so we could receive the healing energy of the earth as well as the cosmos.

I’ve recently started feeling and seeing symbols with my hands and my feet when I am giving a Reiki treatment. The symbol above is a good representation of what I feel and see in the energetic realm of reality.  I was curious about what the symbols meant and did some research, having completely forgotten what Sekhem was and never really understanding what Fiona Young meant when she was speaking about it during our attunments. She also spoke of the traditional Reiki tradition which is what initially spoke to me. Slowly after years of practicing Reiki, Sekhem popped up and my selective memory opened up and I remembered some of these teachings.

The spiritual path is never ending and I feel very grateful for the wonderful experience of being a channel for the divine loving energy that always surrounds us. I feel grateful to be able to share it with those who need it and are willing to receive it. It is all around us  and we are all able to receive it. Simply ask and you shall receive!

Sending Love! Love! Love!

Melika Emira Baccouche

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Sekhem is a very powerful transformational force in energy healing. It is believed to be the healing energy taught and practiced by the Priesthood in the temples of ancient Egypt. There are references to Sekhem in scrolls and hieroglyphs indicating that ‘Sekhem’ denoted ‘Power’ or ‘Might’ when used in spiritual terms.” Simon Treselyan

Sekhem has a close connection to the Egyptian lion – headed Goddess Sekhmet -the Goddess of a thousand names. She destroys all that is no longer of value and brings healing to the world.

Many people not connected with Egypt and her archetypes experience the energies in different ways. Other powerful archetypes, saints and angels carry the same energy and manifest to the initiates. The energy comes through in the way most appropriate for each student or person receiving healing.

Sekhem means the “Power of Powers” and it is connected with our own empowerment for both healing and spiritual development. Once initiated all our healing work improves exponentially.

Egyptian Sekhem is more powerful than Reiki and it works on different energy bodies simultaneously. This results in the avoidance of a prolonged healing crisis and is a great aid in spiritual development.

Egyptian Sekhememploys 3D symbols which are linked to the science of the pyramids.

Reiki uses symbols two-dimensionally so Seichim/Reiki Masters will benefit both from the increase in power and dimensionality when using their Seichim/Reiki symbols. At Advanced level and beyond it is the original Egyptian Sekhem energy and how it manifests symbolically. This energy is fundamentally Unconditional Love in its pure form. The symbols include access tointer-dimensional portals.

Some of the benefits of Egyptian Sekhem are:

  • Accelerating the infinite process of spiritual development and enlightenment
  • Assisting in manifesting our goals
  • Increasing our psychic powers and abilities to see energy
  • Increasing our feeling of aliveness by bringing us more fully into the present
  • Increasing awareness of who we are and about our relationships
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Egyptian Sekhem Masters are encouraged to be initiated into the Egyptian Cartouche. This is a very powerful initiation not suitable for beginners in which the initiate embodies the frequencies of each of the archetypal energies in turn. The initiation into the archetypes brings about a state of heightened awareness and a deep understanding of those energies. Psychics who are initiated receive clearer information and powers of mediumship are enhanced.

 

The foundation of the system is the attunement to the male and female aspects of the Ultimate Divinity as expressed through both Egyptian and Kaballastic symbolism. This foundation is included as part of the Seichem Reiki Mastership– see below.

Subsequently there is an initiation into 25 different archetypal energies. These energies are represented by 25 different symbols. These symbols represent certain Universal Archetypes. Those universal concepts remain the same regardless of whether the shape of the symbol is a Rune, Egyptian Hieroglyph or Astrological Sign. The 9 major symbols correspond to the early Egyptian Pantheon known as the Ennead of Heliopolis.

These represent those energies which are the purest archetypal aspects possible. Universal or cosmic energy is totally impersonal being neither good nor evil. It is coloured by the intention of the user. Cosmic Laws and the energies they cover do not belong to anyone creed, religion or philosophy.

“Cartouche” is the oval within which the hieroglyphs are drawn. Usually the cartouche contains the name of a sovereign or person of high rank. Many of the symbols within the Egyptian Cartouche are familiar to us such as the pyramid, the caduceus, the lotus etc.

These ancient symbols capture the essence of the forces or energies that govern the universe. “Archetype” means first type or pattern. An archetype represents principles that can be personified.

Each symbol is accurately tuned to its own respective energy field, ray or vibration and to employ its use is to invoke the forces it represents.

This system is incorporating the work of Kathleen Milner, Simon Treselyan and Murry Hope.

SEICHIM REIKI

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Seichim is a system of Reiki Healing which incorporates the traditional Usui Reiki System symbols with slight variations but with a very different form of initiation.  It includes many extra symbols, methods of awakening and healing and focuses more on the Heart and upper Chakras.  As such it is a very spiritual form and it vibrates with the principal ofUnconditional Love.  Some of the symbols are connected to ancient Egypt and Seichim is the foundation system for Egyptian Sekhem Mystery School.  The symbols assist with the opening of the 3rd Eye and Crown and strengthening the spiritual connection.
The Chinese Goddess of Kwan Yin – the Goddess of Compassion
Seichim is a high level system with only 2 levels of initiation and it is ideal for those Reiki Masters who would like to progress with greater scope of symbols, a deeper understanding of forgiveness and unconditional love and an acceleration of their spiritual journey.

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This system was created by Kathleen Milner after coming across Patrick Ziegler’s Sekhem work and it includes full Reiki Initiation.  Some of the symbols are also contained in the Karuna System – see Reiki Energy Mastery section.  It is a stand-alone system but it can be given in addition to Usui Mastership.  It is pronounced ‘say keem’ and it originated in ancient Egypt.

http://www.egyptianskhm-reiki.com/index.php/initiations-egyptian_systems/?k=31967:4::

 

PLEASE REMOVE YOUR SHOES

49994394172a8ec05e7428102d4b8d21When I come home, I take off my shoes and go inside. I never thought to do it the other way around, until now.

Aside from the beach or your backyard, how often do you take off your shoes and walk around outside? If you are like me, you can’t remember when—it may have been sometime in childhood.

Every morning for the past 15 years, I’ve walked my dog in the woods next to my cottage. A couple of days ago I finally slipped off my shoes and walked barefoot. This is what I learned.

1. I still worry about what people think.

As soon as I took off my shoes I had a minute worrying that passerby’s might think I had either taken LSD or was stuck in the ’70s. I also realized how weird it was to have shoes on all of the time. We are animals after all. The only animals that wear lace up, padded shoes.

2. The earth is soft.

So soft in fact that it deeply moved me. Like touching a beloved’s cheek. The temperature of the dirt changed step after step depending on the tree cover over me, and the leaf litter under me. The moisture, the rocks, the shade, the direction of the wind. It all mattered.

3. Walking barefoot is best done slowly and gently.

This way of moving alters your mind and mood. The sharp rocks and prickly oak leaves are there, but it is no big deal. The animal in us knows how to shift our weight, slide a little to the left, step on a rock, or not.

4. Walking barefoot creates presence.

Mind chatter dissipates. The birds are less suspicious. We are quieter and the animals tend to stick around more. We notice sounds, smells and see more detail as we slowly pass by.

5. Sensing connection.

I could really sense the “mother” in mother earth as I stood on her warm skin. I felt the biosphere. The connection of us all. Roots nested under the soles of my feet, cool spikes of growth poking through the earth all around me, and leafing out above me. Feeling the rumble of the creek rise up through my small bones. The delicate nature of our world. I also realized why my dog walks where she walks.

Last month, my mentor, Martha Beck first encouraged me to remove my socks and shoes and venture out on the earth barefoot. We were at a retreat surrounded by horse pastures. I have been lucky enough to have spent much of my life in the company of wonderful horses but this was the very first time I was shoeless. It was a whole new, almost unexplainable experience. When the horses noticed me, they stopped eating and trotted up to the fence. I silently moved towards them. They seemed very curious and very calm. We stood together on the warm earth for a long while, and then noiselessly, we separated as one.

It is amazing to me how wearing shoes on my feet has separated me from so much of who I am, and what I am a part of.

I am completely aware that much of this may sound hokey but I encourage you to try this simple yet slightly radical act of slipping off your shoes and walking in the dirt. Please leave a comment and let me know what you discover.

http://www.elephantjournal.com/2015/11/please-remove-your-shoes-how-to-find-the-mother-in-mother-earth/

GRATITUDE AND IT’S MAGICAL POWERS

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How to Practice Bhakti Yoga

The Beatles had it right when they sang “the love you take is equal to the love you make.” Bhakti is about making more love—putting it out into the world, not just in principle but also in practice. There is no one “right” way to do that, but bhakti yoga offers a number of tools to point the heart in the right direction.

One of the best known of the traditional practices of bhakti yoga is kirtan—the devotional chanting of the names of God. Other classic Hindu methods focus on prayer, japa (repetition of mantra), and devotion to the Divine—in society, in nature, in the capital-S Self, and in all of creation. The path will look different for every being that walks it, says the singer-songwriter Jai Uttal, who created the bhakti yoga 101 audio program “It’s so individual, and that’s what is so beautiful about it,” he says. “Each person has a different emotional landscape, and in bhakti yoga we can let our emotions be our internal compass. Nobody can tell us how or whom to worship, but we can draw on techniques that act as keys to open our own hearts.”

What’s the ultimate bhakti practice for when you’ve suffered a loss, romantic or otherwise? Brooks has a ready answer: Be willing to do it all over again. “Fall in love again, and never stop. Bhakti is not a zero-sum game. You never run out of love. You must expect that you will find love again, and even if you find more heartache, there will always be more love.”

That was certainly the case for Cornell. “I went to India for six weeks after my breakup, and during that time I invited a sense of fullness to fill my aloneness by imagining a life in which I was loved and in love,” she says. “I had begun dating, but I somehow knew to hold out for what I really wanted in a partner. Two months after I returned home, I found him.”

Married in 2009, Cornell credits her earlier breakup with creating the openness and compassion she needed to find a more lasting relationship. “Believing in love gave a sacred purpose to the pain I was going through,” she says.

That’s as it should be, Brooks says. Since you can’t transcend heartache, you should embrace it. “We were all created out of love but born into separation the moment the cord was cut,” he says. “That’s what it is to be human. Heartbreak is not the end of love. It’s the beginning.”

Connect with the Divine

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In its most literal translation, bhakti yoga calls for faithful devotion to the Divine. This doesn’t mean that you have to worship a specific deity, but simply that you identify a source of spiritual inspiration to revere and call on for comfort and love. “Bhakti is about creating an eternal loving relationship with the divine source,” says Gaura Vani, a renowned mantra musician and member of the kirtan band Hanumen.

“No matter what tradition you come from, chanting God’s name opens a process of healing and cleansing the heart,” Vani says. “The Vedas say that there are as many names for God as there are waves on the ocean. We call him Krishna; Christians call him Jesus; Jews call him Yahweh; the Sufis call him Khuda. Whatever the case, let the beautiful name of the Lord remind you that you are more loved than you can even imagine.”

If you happen to already have a spiritual practice centered around a particular divine entity or spiritual guide, chant that name to fill your heart with love and ask for help healing your heart, says Vani. If not, try asking for help from your capital-S higher Self. Either way, call out with intention, focusing on quality over quantity, and on opening your heart to divine love and intervention.

Saying “Namaste” Is Bhakti Yoga

Just about everyone who has taken a yoga class is familiar with the class-closing ritual of saying Namaste accompanied by Anjali Mudra (Salutation Seal) and a small bow of the head. The meaning, which is something along the lines of “the light within me salutes the light within you,” is a beautiful way to practice bhakti outside class, too, and to bring more love into your life.

Mean What You Say

Every time you take leave of a friend, loved one, or acquaintance, choose parting words infused with blessing or connection—”take care,” “be well,” or “vaya con dios” all work—and say them with genuine intention. Even if you simply say “goodbye,” take a moment to fill the word with meaning.

Says Vani, “Namaste means ‘I bow and humble myself before you because I recognize myself as a loving servant of the Divine, and I recognize you as a living temple.’” This is something you can do whenever the spirit moves you, even silently, Vani says. “Simply take a second to see that everyone you come in contact with is an expression of divine consciousness,” he suggests. You will soon realize the truth: Love is all around you, whether you’re checking out at the grocery store, standing in line for a movie, or sitting behind the wheel in traffic.

Learn to Love Globally

Practicing bhakti yoga means seeing everyone and everything as a creation of God. Interpersonal relationships (including the romantic kind) are one aspect of this kind of devotion, but a good way to soothe the pangs of heartbreak is to expand your realm of who and what is loved. When you’re feeling bereft, try loving everyone, everywhere.

Nischala Joy Devi, author of The Secret Power of Yoga, suggests a simple seated practice for sending your love out into the world. “Imagine spreading a fine mist of healing energy over the world,” she says. “You can direct your thoughts to the world in general or focus on areas you know are plagued with unrest or war or famine. Hold them in your thoughts, and send them some of your light.”

This is the basis of the Buddhist practice of tonglen (“sending”) meditation: taking the suffering of others (and yourself) into your heart and then sending back loving compassion to all who suffer. When you send your love out into the world in this way, the effects can be dramatic for both sender and receiver, says Devi. “Victims of the recent earthquake in Central America reported that they felt the prayers from people around the globe and that the prayers eased their suffering,” she says. “It also has a big effect on you in that it gets you out of your head and back into your heart.”

Practice Self-Love and Devotion

In the deepest throes of despair, it can be hard to lavish yourself with love. Your asana practice is a great way to show devotion to your Self, and when you feel immobilized by sadness, it can help bring you back into your body, says Mark Whitwell, author of Yoga of Heart and The Promise of Love, Sex, and Intimacy. “When people are depressed, they stop their asana practice,” he says, “but that’s when they really need it!”

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Whitwell sees asana as a bridge to help you reconnect to a state of wellness that was available to you before your experience of loss. But it’s also a way, he says, to realize the ideals of bhakti just as you are here and now—broken heart and all. “Consistent daily practice is your way to reconnect directly with the intimacy that is life,” he explains. “It is a whole-body prayer, a celebration of that which beats the heart and moves the breath.”

If you don’t feel up to doing your usual practice, try a few Cat-Cows and slow Sun Salutations, staying mindful of the body and breath. “When you practice, you connect with a deeper source of love and become part of the context in which all relationships are arising,” says Whitwell. From this broader perspective, he adds, “it is easier to accept loss.”

If your heart is feeling locked up by sorrow, consider adding an element of bhakti yoga to your daily practice. Here, a few modern bhakti masters offer ways to exercise the muscles of love and fill your heart to overflowing.

Be Nurtured By Nature

Nature is a powerful reflection of divinity, says Sara Ivanhoe, a Los Angeles yoga teacher who recently participated in the making of the film Women of Bhakti. “When we are suffering from heartbreak, we have all this love we’re carrying around and an intense longing to put it somewhere,” she says. “Giving it to the planet makes sense, especially if you’re a yogi.”

The ancient yogis offered unconditional love to all that was around them, says Ivanhoe, worshiping and emulating the sun, the moon, the plants, the animals. You can do the same, she says, by simply stepping outdoors and opening your senses and your heart to nature—trees, grass, and plants if you’re in the countryside; air, sunlight, and wind if you’re in the city. Mountains, blades of grass, and the stars at night work equally well as sources of inspiration and, yes, love. “Yoga was created to help yoke our consciousness to nature, which nourishes us,” she says. “When you are able to do that, you have a huge amount of support.”

Ivanhoe suggests a simple journaling exercise for reaching out to nature for help in healing your heartbreak. “When you are consumed by grief, ask yourself, ‘If nature could console me and talk to me, what would she say?’” she suggests. Go outdoors to do this, if you like, and don’t feel that you have to craft an essay; just write down what comes to you. “Nature is full of guidance and support for us,” Ivanhoe says. “We only need to ask for it.”

Fill Your Heart With Song

In bhakti yoga, says Jai Uttal, music is medicine. And singing—a mantra, a hymn, or the name of your spiritual guide—is another way to treat an aching heart. “You can sing kirtan sweetly, or sing them fiercely with angst, or sing them with yearning or whatever emotions are arising in you,” Uttal says. “If you get bored, keep on singing. Sing until the singing itself becomes part of your molecules, and your heart flows into the ocean of divine love.”

If you’re timid or need inspiration, start by listening to kirtan or gospel albums (or any other devotional music that moves you). Try http://www.amazon.com/Million-Moons-Gaura-Kindred-Spirit/dp/B001WBK9L6/ref=sr_1_cc_1?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1353103531&sr=1-1-catcorr&keywords=10+Million+Moons+and+As+Kindred+Spirit by Gaura Vani,Grace by Kundalini yogi Snatam Kaur, The Essence by Deva Premal, Devaloka by Sean Johnson and the Wild Lotus Band, or any of Uttal’s excellent offerings, including his personal favorites Queen of Hearts and Shiva Station. First listen, and then sing along. Then take it a step further, and sing all by yourself—in the shower, in the car, or in the garden—anytime you want to feel uplifted.

And don’t worry about what your voice sounds like—kirtan is about filling your heart with love, not about being a great singer. “No matter our accents, our ability to carry a tune, or our musical aesthetic,” says Uttal, “when we sing kirtan, we are awakening our hearts and healing old traumas.”

Hillari Dowdle is a longtime Yoga Journal contributor and a newly certified yoga teacher living and writing in Knoxville, Tennessee.