Ego, Love, Freedom & Practices to Open Your Heart

Dear friends,
Ah, love. What we do it all for.susannanderan
To me, love used to be about approval.

I felt like I was in love when people wanted to be with me.

I’d be super-kind and giving and think that I was being loving.

That isn’t love, though. That is ego-driven need. I needed them to prove to myself that I was worthy of love. Cute trick, right?
And all the giving I was doing was really bargaining for their “love” in exchange.

None of this was satisfying or fulfilling. It was distracting from the deeper goals of peace, happiness and spiritual practice that I had, too. Nor was it good for my relationships!
Only when I met my current partner, and we decided to do things differently, did I realize what love really is.

Now, when I feel like I’m looking for love out of unworthiness or ego, I work on myself first. I work on my 4th chakra to bring it into balance.

4thchakraThe fourth chakra is all about love. It’s about trust, peace, kindness, forgiveness, healing, and unconditional love.
When we feel unworthy, unlovable, jealous, this is the domain of the fourth chakra. Insecurity, fear, unforgiving – all 4th chakra issues. When we feel ourselves bereft and lonely, jealous or untrusting these are sure signs our 4th chakra is out of whack. Yes, of course, we’ve all felt this way.

This vibrant energy center is in the center of our chest. It is right in the center of our lungs. It is connected to the element of air, which seems natural seeing as it is close to our lungs. It is the source of unconditional love.

If you breathe in, expand your chest and open your arms out wide, expanding the heart up to the sky, this is a great way to access the 4rd Chakra.

You can visualize its color is like inner hug, enlightening with a rosy pink or green glow.

Here are 3 heart expanding LOVE inviting practices.
Love yourself by breathing deeply.
Often, we hold our breath. It is hard to feel self-love, or love someone else if we are holding our deep breaths back. So breathe deeply. This stimulates the area of the 4th chakra naturally, oxygenates the body and opens your heart.

Do the Yoga of Love: Give yourself a hug and forgive.
Literally give youselfforgivenessrself a hug by wrapping your arms around yourself, crossing one on top of the other. This can work wonders. This simple act of self-love is powerful and transformative. It eases the way for self-forgiveness and forgiveness of others. Forgiveness is a powerful act of the 4th chakra. Doing it frees us up to feel more deeply, heal and truly love.

sistercircleHelp someone, give, offer, share.
The 4th chakra is the province of universal love. Doing something for someone else is a quick and powerful way to stimulate, open and enliven the 4th chakra. It connects us to the truth that we are all one. It reminds us that we are never alone. By helping, sharing, connecting, we get closer to the reality that all are deserving of love and care.

And the bonus practice is whenever you need a super-power love-bomb do some loving-kindness meditation.

Loving-kindness can be as simple as sending love to yourself by thinking

“May I be happy, safe, healthy, creative, fulfilled and full of everlasting joy”

You can also send love to friends, family, strangers using the same kind of phrasing.

“May they be happy, safe, healthy, creative, fulfilled, and full of everlasting joy.”

Those of you who really want to activate the love-train can practice this phrase for a challenging person or situation. This is traditionally called the “enemy” category. Knowing that even our so-called enemies are deserving of love, we say

“May this person be happy, safe, healthy, creative, fulfilled and full of everlasting joy.”

You can always modify the words or the practice to work for your situation. The point is to harness love and spread love.

I hope this week’s share on love brings you joy and opens your heart.

Read more about how to harmonize your chakras in my upcoming book Pilgrimage to Wholeness, book a magical 1 on 1 yoga & Ayurveda therapy session with me, and put these teachings into lived practice by taking my upcoming yoga teacher training.

Play and Breathe. Teach and Serve.
Deepen Your Practice.
Teach Yoga.

Train with me 2015
P.S. This is the 4th in a series on the chakras. You can find the previous 3 posts on chakras 1,2 and 3 here.
© 2015 | Susanna Barkataki | Healthy Hot Goddess