In my previous post I wrote about the mystical column of light, the shushumna, as our resource in turbulent times. Aligning our awareness in the subtle physical body in this way is the process of centering. With our awareness we locate our center, the “eye of the hurricane”, and the mind quiets, the body relaxes and we feel at peace. Resting here, we build our inner light, radiating it out into the world.

And our light is needed now more than ever. The density of consciousness and the extreme polarization we see on the planet is our own collective shadow manifest. When we can hold our center in the face of it and commit to maintaining this neutrality, we become spiritual beacons, counterbalancing the shadow of the world.

There are other ways to find our center as well. The practice of yoga will beautifully center the mind, body and emotions. Practiced with mindfulness and conscious breath, the body naturally aligns with the core, our center. Also, the martial arts of Tai Chi and Chi Gong will confer the same benefit. Even a quiet walk in nature naturally grounds us with our center as we begin to feel our connection to the earth and to the elements.

All of these practices involve a silent mind. An activated mind takes us outside of our core state in the shushumna. The thinking mind will actually ride flows of polarized energy that wrap around our central core, keeping us off balance. Try holding tree pose in yoga while thinking about the bill you forgot to pay. You won’t be able to stand on one foot for very long!

Quieting the mind in meditation or with any of the body-centered practices described above neutralizes this polarized flow of energy, bringing it into balance. We align with our inner light in the shushumna and find the peace and natural intelligence that emanates from there.

Trees, vertical and tall, mirror the shushumna of our energy body, radiating their own light out into the world. Near where I live is Muir Woods, an ancient grove of redwood trees. I love finding a quiet place to stand there among these giant sentinels. With their palpable presence, their roots interconnected, these beneficent beings hold the oneness for the world, patiently waiting for us to meet them there.