My intent with this post is to offer a meditation on the elements, but more importantly to show a method to incorporate magical living into the daily grind. I expect most readers find the 24 hours we are alotted in a day are insufficient to do everything we would like and so the less pressing activities may suffer. I have little time to spent 30+ minutes in quiet meditation though the traditional quiet time is a productive method. Likewise, I truly dislike repetative aerobic activity and every minute seems to last an eternity. So why not combine the two!!!
Caution! I only recommend this technique on safe exercise equiptment where the user is not likely to fall off, trip or otherwise hurt themselves with a wandering mind. I use an eliptical.
As you begin the goal is to achieve an alpha state and become aware of your bodies rhythm. Feel the pace of your legs churning. Superimpose an awareness of your pulse as your muscles warm up. As you feel comfortable with those two cycles, add an awareness of your breathing. Pay attention to how those three interact as your body warms up.
Once the achiness and stiffness are gone, envision a flower bud-I like a lotus over the solar plexus. As your heartbeat and breathing settle down visualize the bud blooming as new ideas and connections may be given form by your meditation. By now, 5-8 minutes into your workout your mind should be in an alpha state.
First,I like to visualize the elements in a circle overlaid on the body, North/Earth at the head, at the left arm, East/Air, the sacral chakra is South/Fire, and the right arm West/water. Spend a few seconds traveling that circle acknowledging the elements within your body. Bone/North, Breath/East, Body heat/South, Sweat/West. Identify the elements within your physical body.
Second, awaken and empower those elemental centers, each in turn. You may call the Watch Towers, or other elemental symbols to, “be with me through this workout. Enhance my health. Awaken my mind, and give me insight through this exercise (pun intended!).
The third time you circle the elements, address each in turn. Consider its influence in your life. Is it overwhelming you or lacking in your daily activities. Once you have taken some time to consider how each element effects your outlook and its place in your life, consider how the opposite elements interact with each other, enhance each other, complement each other.
Air and Water. The knife edge of the horizen where the sky meets the sea. Intermixed in white water down a raging river. The lungs where oxygen transpires into the blood.
Fire and Earth. Magma within the breast of our Mother. Forged iron in the Athame. Where muscle bonds with bone.
Then let your mind pass on to the adjacent elements and there interactions.
Earth and Air: Wind blowing through caves
Air and Fire: A bellows feeding a fire to ever greated temperatures
Fire and Water: The sweat frantically trying to cool your burning body ( you better be burning up by now 🙂 ).
Water and Earth: The cell and ion filled fluid called blood that permiates your body.
After exploring the elements and their interactions, and presence in your life, you may find you are lacking in one or another. Are you pulled by the events in your life instead of directing them, deficient in Earth. Do you wander through life unaware, deficient in Air. Are you lethargic, deficient in Fire. Is life stale and boring, deficient in Water.
Like wise are you overwhelmed by an Element? Do you find it hard to initiate new projects, stuck in Earth. Are you distracted by information from every side, overwhemed by Air. Are you frantic and stressed out, dominated by Fire, or emotionally labile, drowning in Water?
Acknowledge imbalaces in the Elemental Circle you have superimposed over your body.
Ask the Elements you need in your life to enter into you and enhance your body, mind and spirit.
When I get to the end of the workout, I find a benediction is a great way to finish the exercise. Along the lines of ….. “Living Earth, Be with me Supporting my Steps. Living Air, Be with me Fueling my Purpose, Living Fire, Transform Me, Living Water, Quench my Thirst!
Addendum: I find that concentrating on the bodies rhythm in the beginning of the Exercise exercise is a wonderful doorway to self hypnosis. I like to add a post hypnotic suggestion to this activity to get all the benefit I can.
Well there it is, nothing wrong with quiet meditation, but for me the active body/mind meditation is so much more powerful I heartily recommend trying it!