Monday, December 15, 2014

How’s your fire-power?

The Solar Plexus stores life-force energy, and family relationships teach us how to use it.

My grandfather's wake and funeral this past weekend was a beautiful time to reunite with family members. My grandfather comes from a family of 17 children - there are many relatives I don't know very well, and many cousins I see only occasionally. It really warmed my heart to rekindle family love as we shared memories and stories.

Being with family can be wholesome and nurturing. We grew up with this network of souls. We learned our identity and our place in society through family relationships and conversations. We received conditioning about who we are and how much we should be seen or heard, and along the way we made choices about accepting or rejecting this conditioning. Family is full of love, AND contrasts and life lessons. We form our personality through these relationships - and we also form our ego.

The Solar Plexus chakra is the seat of our willpower. In many spiritual traditions, the area of the Solar Plexus is where we store our vital life energy. Many cultures have referred to this as an inner sun or fire. When we assert ourselves lovingly, we glow from the inside out. It’s easy to recognize someone who is self-confident: their energy is peaceful, strong, and loving. They seem to radiate that “certain je-ne-sais-quoi”. When ego dominates this power centre, however, the fire-power of a person can be explosive with anger, arrogance and tyranny. Instead of being filled with quiet love, we feel fear, shame or unworthiness in the energy of this person. And still, when ego makes us believe that our personal definition resides in shame and unworthiness, one’s inner fire, will to live, and sense of passion just dies out. We can feel dried up and empty. A lack of vital life-force energy can bring on depression and anxiety.

“Energetically, physically, emotionally and mentally, we are all powerful, radiant beings. However, we may not always be living from a place where we accept and radiate our own power. Sometimes we may feel like it would be easier not to have to interact and bargain and state our worth to people at all. Sometimes we may give in and accept less than we’re worth. (…) When we bring balance to this chakra, we can begin to experience a true inner strength and authentic power while moving away from the unhealthy desire to gain power over others. This creates a more relaxed and spontaneous life, powerful but free. When we balance the solar plexus chakra, we accept who we truly are – and accept others for their true selves too.” Natalie Southgate, Founder of Chakradance (R)
It is through the experience of relationships - within the immediate family and the work- or social- family units that we learn valuable lessons in asserting our will centre. In your family and social gatherings this holiday season, be aware of how you feel in the presence of others. Do you need to assert yourself and overpower others? Do you need to “be right” no matter what? Do you allow others to belittle you? Are you blaming family members, the society or your upbringing for your lot in life? Would you rather stay in pj’s under the blankets instead of facing family and friends in social gatherings? How do you perceive others feel in your presence - are they fearful of you, do they share openly, are they smiling and peaceful?

Take regular time-outs just to breathe and reflect. Bring a hand to your stomach as you take a deep breath and become conscious of your own inner fire. Are you radiating your Light, shining with Love, or are you hiding and smouldering? Are you shining so bright that others are getting burned by your fire? It’s not about judging, just notice. And then if you don’t like what you feel choose to change something in your behaviour and attitude.

It all starts with you. You have the power to change how you feel in your family, how you interact with everyone, and how you allow others to treat you.

Establishing and respecting clear boundaries go a long way in creating loving and mutually satisfying relationships. Allow family to be your greatest teacher and instead of becoming angry over the same old wound, be grateful for a lesson in love and personal boundary. With healthy boundaries and the acceptance of who we truly are, it becomes so much easier to foster inner peace and to be a beacon of Light for others.

With this in mind, family gatherings can be rich, insightful and much less stressful.

Surrounding you in Love & Light.