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The Body-Mind-Spirit Mandala or 7 Shades of Bliss

March 23, 2010

“Pointing to those subtle and casual dimensions beyond the physical is part of the purpose of my work. Interweaving the dimensions together – physical, emotional, conceptual, psychic, subtle, and spiritual – has been part of my intention, my mission of art, always with the hope that it resonates with people and affirms their own deeper understanding of themselves and the world.”- artist Alex Grey

Alex Grey Birth

If this picture doesn’t get your attention, nothing will, huh? This is how we all come into the world, more or less. It is by Alex Grey, a favorite artist of mine, and a practitioner of Vajrayana/Tantric Buddhism. If you don’t know anything about Tantric Buddhism, just browse through the ‘Progress of the Soul’ series in the ‘Paintings’ section of his website, and in my opinion you will absorb more than you could ever possibly get from a book. (And he does allow non-commercial use of images from his site, with some restrictions. He also allows his images to be used in tattoos as long as you send him a picture of it when it is done – which is very tempting, I must say!)

I was originally going to use Grey’s chakra painting, but opted for this instead because birth really does signify what I meant by ‘the body as mandala’ in my interview at BlissChick. For me what we often refer to as the ‘spiritual journey’ is really about a full integration of body, mind, and spirit. And what could possibly represent that more clearly than the moment we come into this world, the moment we separate from our mother at the bodily level – the first time our body, mind, and spirit appear together as an individual, wholly unique, being?

Of course I also love this picture because of the way it portrays the mother’s body as a doorway between the worlds, a vortex of light. And see the lines between the mother’s heart chakra and the baby’s? This single picture captures a lot of what I was trying to say in my 2nd Chakra – Motherhood and Creating post (and does so a lot more succinctly, of course.)

This theme of body/mind/spirit integration is on my mind a lot lately because nonduality has moved into the mainstream in recent years. Eckhart Tolle, Gangaji, Byron Katie, Adyashanti, and many other of the most popular spiritual teachers and authors in the West today are all usually categorized as teachers of ‘nonduality’. And they are all teachers whose work and teachings have had a profound influence on me, and whom I greatly admire and respect.

But I have realized that when I hear others talk about nonduality, it often becomes much too mental/intellectual for my taste. The spiritual journey starts sounding like a dry philosophical process, a vacuum in which one realizes ‘the illusion of the I- thought’, or the ‘unreality of the self’, or the ‘essential delusion of ego’. It starts to sound like it all just happens in the mind – like spiritual awakening is a purely mental realization.

As soon as that happens, there’s a problem in my view, because ironically there’s a new duality implied – what I would call a mind/body duality. The mind gets elevated to its own eternal, superior, status – exactly what nonduality is moving away from. Where is the body in all this?

Part of why I was interested in the book Fingerprints of God was because it covered all the scientific research related to what we usually categorize as mystic, spiritual, or intuitive experience. We know for a fact that all such experiences have corresponding physical and neuroscientific phenomena associated with them. There really is no such thing as a purely ‘spiritual’ or ‘mental’ experience. Everything also occurs in the body.

I do recognize that phrases like ‘illusion of the I-thought’ or ‘delusion of ego’ are just ways of talking. I use these phrases myself sometimes. Language is very limiting. Interestingly, if you read the bios of all of the teachers mentioned above, they all talk about the physical process of transformation they underwent as part of their spiritual awakening. So this trap of elevating the mind is not implicit in the path, it’s just a way of talking, or a trap that only some fall into (and every path has its trap, I believe.)

I recently read Stephen Batchelor’s Confessions of a Buddhist Atheist (which I’ll review on BellaOnline later this week), and the author discusses this also in relation to the Buddhist doctrine of rebirth. As it was taught to him (which is not exactly how I view it, BTW), rebirth is entirely based on the idea of an ‘immaterial mind’ that exists separately from our physical body. And as he says, “…as soon as you split the world in two parts – one physical and one spiritual – you will most likely privilege mind over matter…The more you valorize mind and spirit, the more you will be prone to denigrate matter.”

This is what I feel like is happening in a lot of spiritual teaching these days – a denigration of the physical body. We are told about the importance of health, of keeping our body well, but that’s not really the same as honoring the body as a full part of the human spectrum of experience. When we say ‘spiritual experience’ we usually don’t mean a physical experience, grounded in our body.

This is personally why I like the chakras so much (and this post really isn’t intended as a sales pitch for chakra meditation, I’m just explaining myself here!) The chakras are by definition intersections of body, mind and spirit, and experiencing them always occurs on all of these levels.

I also love the 7 core chakras as archetypes for the different kinds of experiences we might have in life in which we feel fully alive, fully present, fully committed. I am avoiding calling these ‘spiritual experiences’ so as to avoid the whole duality trap again, but I do think there are many different methods through which each of us might ‘find our bliss’ – 7 shades of bliss, I’ve been calling them.

Using the 7-chakra model, here’s a sampling (and if you’re not familiar with the chakras at all, here’s an introduction.)

1st – Root Chakra Bliss: Being ‘in the zone’ during athletic pursuits – 100% present in the physical body, with our primal instincts and bodily intuition at its mostly finely tuned; also nature experiences associated with the earth or dirt.

2nd – Sacral Chakra Bliss: Fully absorbed in sensual or sexual experience, sacred sexuality; Fully absorbed in the creative process – in the act of creating; giving birth; free dance.

3rd – Navel Chakra Bliss: Fully centered as a conduit for power, a true sense of power coming through rather than from us. This might occur through a physical practice focused on the chi such as tai chi, qi gong or martial arts, but it can also happen separately from this.

4th – Heart Chakra Bliss: Wholly consumed by love – familial, romantic or mystic/divine; Emotional or devotional union.

5th – Throat Chakra Bliss: Engaged in full and truthful self-expression, whether verbally or artistically; Grounded in our integrity and self-truth.

6th – Third Eye Chakra Bliss: Experiences of pure awareness, stillness, timelessness, and metaphysical vastness; Experiences of intuitive or esoteric insight into the workings of the universe or unseen forces.

7th – Crown Chakra Bliss: Meditative bliss, ananda, samadhi; What we usually term as ‘out-of-body’ or astral experience; near-death experiences.; Experiences of pure light.

None of these have anything to do with actually feeling a chakra – that may or may not occur. And of course, many experiences are combinations of these. But I do think that using the chakras as an archetype in this way is an interesting way of looking at human experience, of the moments and activities each of us find most profound and transforming. I think it’s another way of looking at our unique path, of recognizing the forces in life that drive and attract each of us.

So what do you think? Have you ever fallen into the trap of exulting the mind over body? How do you relate to your body now? Which of these ‘7 shades of bliss’ are part of your path? Which do you least relate to? Or anything else you want to respond to, of course!

And after you comment, do check out Alex Grey’s Progress of the Soul series (under Paintings); you won’t be sorry.

31 Comments leave one →
  1. March 23, 2010 6:58 am

    Oh yes, I confess to having fallen into the trap of “exulting mind over body”. However, recently, I am inclined to view things from a more holistic perspective; which includes the importance of grounding ourselves in the third dimensional world. Indeed, our souls have chosen to incarnate on Earth and we are here for physical experiences. I believe that I can do a lot more for my body….like getting out and exercise more often for instance…LOL!

  2. March 23, 2010 8:08 am

    I LOVE this post Lisa. The painting really helped me click it all into place (I AM visually dominant lol) It’s perfect.

    And your 7 blisses are one of the easiest ways to understand the chakras and human activity. Looking at them as blisses, also helped me link each one to somehting I WANT for myself, if that is clear. I think that could be helpful for others too.

    I could see how I work with (?) each one, or have in the past, or even neglected any.

    I have been 3rd eye dominant for years and years. Reconncting to my family mysticism got me down into the root chakra again. I have to work for that one though, doesn’t seem to come easily.
    And the 2nd neglected on and off, and now reconnecting to it.
    7th is very rare for me.

    Anyway, this is something I could chat about for ages, exploring each area…

    Thanks! Will try to visit Grey’s site for tantric Buddhism.

  3. ruth permalink
    March 23, 2010 8:14 am

    Woa Lisa, yes, that certainly got my attention. That picture is amazing! Yes, I’m going to follow your instruction and tootle off to see more. Wow, thanks for all of that.

  4. March 23, 2010 8:18 am

    Just reading through them again and was thinking I woud love to read further activities for each one to better understand practical ways to access them. Has anyone else set it out like this?

  5. March 23, 2010 11:23 am

    Hi Lisa,

    I LOVE this post! It is ALL important – mind body and spirit and to balance them all including my right and left brain have been challenging. I often neglect the body in the way of sleep or rest and charge ahead with my to-dos and all my passions… I KNOW I do better when I meditate daily in all aspects of my life but sometimes rationalize away “the time” to do it…ahhh the being human is interesting isn’t it? ;-)

    As for your 7 Stages of Bliss — WOW — bring it on! ;-) I feel I have experienced them all but boy could I use that more! ;-) I;m thinking of printing those out as a reminder! Right now I am working on the 3rd chakra and it’s funny because I JUST had my first Qi Gong experience and was SOOO drawn to it… ahhh it all makes sense now – I WILL be looking into a local class or online for some exercises later today – THANK YOU!

    Another brilliant post Lisa… I have always loved your writing and amazingly it seems to be getting EVEN better!!!! Hope all is well!

    Lots of Love and hugs,
    Jenny

  6. March 23, 2010 12:04 pm

    *Emo mode on*

    First of all, Lisa, this is really an awesome post. I rarely encounter blog posts like this one, but when I do, it just makes me feel so alive. Hence, I want to thank you for making me feel that way. This really rocks! And oh, thank you also for reminding me about Alex Grey. I’ve seen his work before on a couple of video documentaries and when I read the book DMT: The Spirit Molecule by Rick Strassman. Fabulous artist, I might say.

    *Emo mode off*

    Now, I hope you don’t mind if I answer your questions. =)

    So what do you think? Have you ever fallen into the trap of exulting the mind over body? – Definitely, but I don’t really consider it a trap. Maybe the experience is just really supposed to be that way. We all learn from our experience anyway, don’t we? And, I’m quite certain that everything happens for a reason. If one goes through that process and it is deduced later that one is doing it all wrong, then good. That’s enlightenment right there. However, if one goes through that process and stays there for a very long time, then the fruit is probably not yet ripe. You know what, this reminds me of the Bodhidharma’s bloodstream sermon:

    Buddhas don’t save Buddhas. If you use your mind to look for a Buddha, you won’t see the Buddha. As long as you look for a Buddha somewhere else, you’ll never see that your own mind is the Buddha. Don’t use a Buddha to worship a Buddha. And don’t use the mind to invoke a Buddha. Buddhas don’t recite sutras. Buddhas don’t keep precepts. And Buddhas don’t break precepts. Buddhas don’t keep or break anything. Buddhas don’t do good or evil. To find a Buddha, you have to see your nature.

    How do you relate to your body now? – I had been neglecting it to some extent before I started with my spiritual journey. When I became a full-fledged psychonaut, it was neglected even more. It is now slowly being recognized by whoever is in-charge of my existence that the body is needed to complete the work. Hence, I’m do a little bit of pranayama every now and then. LOL

    Which of these ‘7 shades of bliss’ are part of your path? – Lately, the 6th Chakra (Third Eye) seems to tickle my fancy. I’ve been meditating on it for quite some time now. I’m very much aware that mastery of these energy centers is only a means to an end, but hey, we can’t really build a house without the right tools. =)

    Again, thanks for this awesome post.

    Peace and respect,
    Ryhen

  7. March 23, 2010 2:20 pm

    Lisa, You certainly know where I stand (ha!) on this. Being trapped in my head (and depression) for so long, I now understand the body as gateway to everything else. Why else bother to have a physical experience?

    The chakras. Too many people think they’ve somehow “arrived” at the higher chakras. Or I have heard people actually say that they are “Done” with the “lower.”

    Rubbish.

    All the charkas, of course, are always being worked on. A spiral — not just a ladder — of interweaving light. The heart chakra being the ultimate gateway between 1 through 3 and 5 through 7/8 (depending on your system).

    Jung said that Western Culture was stuck at 3 (will) and that our next generations’ main job would be to learn to move that energy into the heart.

    I’m rambling way more than I intended but there is so much material here! I’ve written posts with exercises for each chakra but, of course, it’s never enough! :)

  8. March 23, 2010 2:51 pm

    Evelyn – you know, it seems that everyone I know has been making this same shift, or many people anyway, from exulting mind over body to a more holistic approach. So it seems to be a ‘zeitgeist’. I was always very physical – dance growing up, then martial arts and yoga, now mostly yoga – but I never completely put it all together, in terms of my personal experience, and tended to think of my spiritual growth in terms of meditative experiences. The last few years have been a correction of that, and it’s interesting to me that of all the meditation practices out there, I was drawn to chakra work so many years ago, because now it offers the perfect framework for thinking about all of this.

    Mon – yes, staying grounded in the first was an issue for me too, and ironically, opening up the 2nd (that whole ‘we teach what we most need to learn theme again’). I think I was drawn to dance because of that when I was young, it helped with both. But you know, your explorations in art have opened up something for me too, maybe that is another zetigeist going on right now, as it seems like a lot of people I know are turning to creative expression right now. I think I really need something equivalent in my own life right now, I have been coloring a lot of mandalas but haven’t gone ‘freeform’ yet. I think this drive is part of moving to another level with the 2nd and third eye for me. Anyway, yes others have used the chakras as archetypes, particularly Joseph Campbell, and Carolynn Myss (author of Anatomy of the Spirit which I think you said you’ve read) does too, but I don’t know as they tie it to these kind of experiences. I am teaching a class based on this right now, so I may post a series on it when I’m done and see where it goes…

    Ruth – I thought of you right away when I reconnected with Alex’s work, partly because you have so recently given birth, but also because some of the paintings in that underground Italian chapel you posted reminded me of his work. I have known about his work for a long time, but for some reason right now it really resonated for me. It is a bit technical and ‘masculine’ at times, but still, for me it just opens up the ‘unseen’.

  9. March 23, 2010 2:57 pm

    Jenny – I’m glad you like! You know, I haven’t written much about the body, partly because I was caught in this idea that I am not a healer. But of course it’s not only healers like you that work with the body. As you know, I have always shared your love of dance, and some of what you have written about it in the last year, and its role in your life, and also Christine at BlissChick, reminded me of this and was part of my own exporations this year. Like I said in some of my other responses, it seems to be a zeitgeist right now, creative expression especially. Thanks!

    Ryhen – Great comment, thanks! I’m so glad you brought up Bodhidharma, he is one of my favorites, especially because of the martial arts connection, as I studied it for many years. As I’m sure you know, according to legend part of what he did when he got to the Shaolin Temples is insist upon physical exercise, as he saw that the monks were totally trapped in the mind. And since there were so many retired military personnel there, kung fu ended up evolving from the exercises they developed. So he is perfect for this theme! I saw last night that you have posted several posts since I got back (I was offline last week) so I am looking forward to checking them out later today…

  10. March 23, 2010 3:03 pm

    Christine – missed you in there, you must have been on at the same time as me! Yes, I knew you would resonate with this. As I mentioned to Jenny and others, this seems to be such a zeitgeist right now. The whole upper chakra thing is very misunderstood I think, based on the whole ‘sleeping serpent, move the energy up’ thing. Obviously it’s a part of the journey, but can cause a lot of problems when it’s the only intent. I think the chakras are meant to be used holistically on all levels – physical, psychological, energetically, spiritual etc. I have been thinking about Jung’s heart chakra thing too. I think it is also about the sacral chakra, because it has been repressed I feel. The 2nd and 4th. But that may just be me and my obsession with the 2nd chakra! Anyway, you can ramble whenever you want here:-)

  11. March 23, 2010 6:41 pm

    I love your breakdown of the chakras, Lisa! I don’t see them as hierarchical, either. I work with them daily in my meditations, clearing and (hopefully) activating each one. Depending on what I’m learning at the moment, certain chakras will feel like they need more focus or attention. I’m open to where my attention is drawn.

    Your point about the intellectualization of spirituality, especially nonduality, resonated for me. My mind has always been so overactive, and I feel more peaceful and centered when I can get out of it a bit, and bring my focus into my body. When I “think” about nonduality and such, my mind gets tangled up in knots searching for sense of it all, and I don’t feel the same ease in my body as I do when I simply listen to what my body is telling me.

    Thanks for sharing the artwork, too! Great!

    Cheers!
    Alexis

  12. March 23, 2010 8:41 pm

    Hi Lisa. Interesting post. I found myself thinking “of course it’s in the body too. Isn’t it obvious?” and feeling a bit surprised at the compartmentalisation of all experience. It seems to me most happenings are resonating in most of the chakras, subtly or overtly. It’s all “the zone” and we’re in it!

  13. March 23, 2010 11:20 pm

    I wasn’t born that way — I was born by c-cut. Perhaps that affected my body and spirituality . . .
    I think I know what you mean, and I recognize I used to put spirituality over body. I don’t see it that way any more, but it’s still a challenge to be fully grounded. Yes, my weakest point is the 1st chakra. My strongest is probably the 5th chakra — I love writing and talking with my clients :)

  14. March 24, 2010 1:30 am

    Love this post, Lisa. What a fabulous and insightful perspective. And I do agree about the tendency to denigrate the body on the spiritual path. Since 1994 I’ve come to realize that my pathway into deeper spiritual understanding has been precisely through my body and what a sacred experience that is! Right now I’d say my experience has come through my heart chakra – healing a wounded heart, healing a weak heart, opening this heart, living in this heart, sending the energy of this heart outward to all. Love to YOU, my friend.

  15. March 24, 2010 3:00 am

    Alexis – yea, it may be that those of us that are more ‘mental’ are more prone to this trap, and that others don’t have this problem, I don’t know. I wrote about it because I do see it as a problem in my own past, and it seems many others do too, based on the comments. I think the body has so many levels of wisdom in it, and learning to listen to it is such a glorious thing.

    Suzanne – I may have overplayed the ‘mental trap’ business, but it is something I have run into quite a bit in my path. That may be my own karma, lol! First in a Zen community, and then more recently at a satsang that I attended. Both were fascinating groups of people, but it did start feeling like purely mental masturbation about the ‘I-thought’ and ‘ego’ at a certain point. Walking out of the satsang it literally felt like everyone was MORE buried in their intellect than ever. So different than walking out of one with Gangaji or other teachers I have seen, or from my own experiences for that matter. So I think it is a trap SOME people fall into. Words make it tough sometimes, they are so easy to get trapped in. You have perfected ‘nondual’ writing I would say, but that is unusual:-)

    As for the chakra stuff, here I meant it more as archteypes for different experiences. I do think inquiry is largely a third eye activity, although the ‘fruit’ is full body. And that is true for so many other things as well (that they draw on the energy of one part of our ‘energetic anatomy’ but when fully experienced expand us into all of them.) This is why I like Alex Grey’s work – he shows the energetic movements, and I personally find that fascinating. Like some people find sudoko fascinating, or ballet, or chemistry, or whatever.

  16. March 24, 2010 3:05 am

    Akemi – I put ‘more or less’ in there to cover C-sections. My twins were born C-section, my eldest normally, so I have experienced both from the mother’s perspective. And I would say that energetically this picture reflects what happens in both – the mother’s being is a vortex, and there is a subtle/energetic/spiritual process that occurs at the same time as the physical one. It is just that in a C-section it is so abrupt (in scheduled cases that is, in cases where it comes at the end of a long labor, a lot of the ‘opening’ has occurred during that process I think.) That makes sense about your 5th chakra, and of course I share your sometimes issue with the 1st!

    Jan – Yes, you are another one that has declared this year the ‘year of the body’. It is certainly a big theme this year. I am wondering about the astrological significance of that, I will have to ask someone on that. The other big theme is creative, I am seeing that all over the place in people too. And as for the heart chakra, you are pure heart, my friend!

  17. March 24, 2010 3:44 am

    That’s interesting what you have to say about c-sections. Yes, I was induced. According to my mother, I wasn’t doing anything 1 week after the expected day, so the doctors decided to induce me on Monday if nothing happened over the weekend, which turned out to be the case. I guess they were afraid that my head was growing too big for natural birth… I never thought about it but I guess it was abrupt — no labor pains over the night or anything. Doctors gave her drugs, I was born after lunchtime. So unromantic. And my mother implies I was a lazy bone from the time before birth.

  18. March 24, 2010 4:47 am

    Hi Lisa
    As I have said before I am absolutely drawn to your grounded explanations.
    We live on this earth and I think we need to have a body, mind, spiritual connection otherwise why are we here?
    I have neglected the spiritual one because I felt it was too much in the head and most spiritual people in my eyes were not doing well in ‘real’ life, so I colored all spirituality with the same brush.
    Now I am paying more attention to the spiritual and thanks to posts like yours I see the fit.
    Thanks for pointing to certain aspects of the painting, that was helpful.
    As for the chakras , I had to think about that but it is the 5th that speaks to me.
    Love Wilma

  19. March 24, 2010 6:07 am

    Wonderful post, Lisa. Here are some thoughts from Seth (The Nature of Personal Reality):

    “You are only half conscious when you do not examine the information that comes to you from without, and when you ignore that data that comes to you from within. Many false beliefs therefore are indiscriminately accepted because you have not examined them. You have given the inner self a faulty picture of reality. Since it is the function of the conscious mind to assess physical experience, it [the inner self] hasn’t been able to do its job properly. If the inner portion of the self were supposed to have that responsibility, then you would not need a conscious mind.” ~ The Nature of Personal Reality, session 615.

    “The conscious mind sets the goals and the inner self brings them about, using all its facilities and inexhaustible energy. The great value of the conscious mind lies precisely in its ability to make decisions and set directions.” ~ The Nature of Personal Reality, Session 615.

    “In a manner of speaking, the conscious mind is a window through which you look outward – and looking outward, perceive the fruits of your inner mind. Often you let false beliefs blur that great vision. Your joy, vitality and accomplishment do not come from the outside to you as the result of events that ‘happen to you.’ They spring from inner events that are the result of your beliefs.” ~ The Nature of Personal Reality, session 615.

    ”Your conscious beliefs direct the functioning of your body. It is not the other way around.” ~ The Nature of Personal Reality, session 615.

    (My favourite): ”Your spirit joined itself with flesh, and in flesh, to experience a world of incredible richness, to help create a dimension of reality of colors and of form. Your spirit was born in flesh to enrich a marvelous area of sense awareness, to feel energy made into corporeal form. You are here to use, enjoy, and express yourself through the body. You are here to aid in the great expansion of consciousness. You are not here to cry about the miseries of the human condition, but to change them when you find them not to your liking through the joy, strength and vitality that is within you; to create the spirit as faithfully and beautifully as you can in flesh.” ~ The Nature of Personal Reality, Session 615.

    Hugs,
    Mike.

  20. March 24, 2010 7:13 am

    Alex Grey’s work is very interesting…and more analysis. You can analyse, and learn and understand, and do exercises. Then, you can maybe just live!

  21. March 24, 2010 1:40 pm

    I love this post too. For the last few sessions, I’ve been cycling through each of the chakras in the yoga classes that I’m teaching, and have been loving that approach.

    I know that early in my spiritual path, I was very interested in the development of the higher chakras to the neglect of the lower chakras. I’d like to think that I’m currently attempting more of a balanced approach.

    I love the body-centred approach to Spirit and celebrating the body through dance, yoga and good food.

    Janice

  22. March 24, 2010 5:01 pm

    Wilma – yes, I think this word ‘spiritual’ throws some people off. To me you are so clearly doing ‘soul-work’ (for lack of a better word) and helping others to do so – what could be more spiritual than that? But we do each come at it differently, we do each experience the fullness of our being, a full integration of ourselves, through different mediums, and that is why I like this chakra archetype model. And yes, the 5th is so perfectly aligned with what you are doing with Women Like Me!

    Mike – I love the last one the best also. “Your spirit joined itself with flesh, and in flesh, to experience a world of incredible richness, to help create a dimension of reality of colors and of form.” Thanks for sharing!

  23. March 24, 2010 5:04 pm

    Suzanne – I agree. For me ‘just living’ involves this kind of analysis. I love it, I love metaphysics and occult studies like some people love to dance.

    Janice – Thanks for mentioning good food – I have never been one to limit myself in that way (although in my 40s I am realizing I am clearly going to have to make some adjustments!) I do think joys of the body are every bit a part of why we’re here as anything else. Thanks for visiting.

  24. March 24, 2010 8:40 pm

    I just wanted to pop in to thank you for your wonderful comment on BlissChick’s post with me today.

    Your blog is an inspiration too :)

  25. March 25, 2010 1:06 am

    Wow. That picture really speaks loud volumes of energy! I haven’t seen the description of the 7 chakras really that well put together in an easy to follow manner. Excellent!

  26. March 25, 2010 4:07 pm

    Rachel and Baker – Glad you enjoyed it, and thanks for visiting. Looking forward to checking out your blogs too in coming days.

  27. March 28, 2010 4:54 am

    Hi Lisa

    I keep passing this video around. The speaker talks about how public education has caused us to view our bodies as little more than forms of transportation for our heads. He’s right of course. Physical education was removed from the curriculum decades ago, and dance today is at the very bottom of arts programs. This can’t be good for children, teaching them from the waist up only.

    My body seldom brings itself to my attention like my head does. I feel hunger pains and potty pangs and that’s about it unless I hurt myself. Even horniness and sleepiness, I think, come from the head. My body has served me well. I was voted most athletic female in high school. I’ve always loved and appreciated my body but I don’t think about it much.

    What I do think about a lot is that sixth chakra stuff you listed. Third-eye consciousness intrigues the heck out of me. I don’t know what ‘ananda’ and ‘samadhi’ mean.

    Here’s the video. It’s worth a watch. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iG9CE55wbtY

  28. March 30, 2010 4:55 pm

    As a devotee of the Great Mother, the Schechinah, I have to say I love your post and your name of mommymystic. I found your site through Akemi whose e mails I read and enjoy. Hi Akemi,nice to see your picture.

    I agree with you especially about the tendency to negate the physical in many of the spiritual paths and especially to negate the sexual. My work in Tantric Kabbalah, integrates evolutionary biology, quantum mechanics and neurobiology with tantra, kabbalah, and goddess worship.

    Evolutionarily the biological expense of having a brain that is so deeply connected to breasts, clitoris, goddess spot and cervix to establish the prolonged bliss of expanded female orgasms that can last for hours on a daily basis, must have an overwhelming evolutionary advantage that pays for it.

    No one but myself really teaches that it was woman who made us human, woman who gave us love by separating sexuality from procreation in that humanizing process, ancient crones who created human culture about 35,000 to 50,000 years ago making us into human beings from human animals, and women (again likely crones) who created agriculture 10,000 years ago and animal husbandry (ironic name) 8,000 years ago.

    The thought disorder of patriarchy was created by male priests 7,000 years ago. Thankfully now science and in particular the sciences I described above will combine with the Goddess, to overthrow patriarchy and save the world.

    love and light,

    Stuart

    http://stuartmarkberlin.com

    P.S. My autobiography is titled Everywoman a Goddess: Everyman a Hero in Her Service, and my second book is titled Sexual Secrets of Tantric Kabbalah: Making Love

  29. March 30, 2010 5:10 pm

    Brenda, thanks you are so right. ‘Ananda’ means ‘bliss’, and is usually meant to refer to meditative bliss, and ‘samadhi’ is used to refer to ‘higher’ meditative states in classical yogic texts. Both are sanskrit. I don’t really like to use the phrase ‘higher’ myself, that’s kind of the point of this post, but that is usually how it is referred to in classic yogic texts – samadhi is specifically meditative states associated with the third eye and crown in that context. There are hundreds of different types of samadhi categorized, depending on which texts you read.

    So you are in a real third eye phase, huh? Will be interesting to see where it takes you! I think I am going to do a post soon on the link between the 2nd chakra and the third eye in women. I touched on this theme last Spring, but have more to say.

    Stuart – fascinating stuff for sure. I don’t really think of the 2nd chakra access in terms of orgasm anymore, I think there are states of full-body awakening in which you don’t even feel an actual physical orgasm, it is so small a wave in the grand scheme of the energy transformation. But orgasms are the way most women first experience the power of their 2nd chakra, and one of the tools of Tantra. But moving beyond that, and accessing it all the time regardless of one’s physical state, is possible too. I also don’t really think in terms of ‘overthrowing patriarchy’, I don’t think things are really all that black and white – I’m more interested in the theme of rebalancing and integration. But you raise many interesting points, thanks for commenting.

  30. ruth permalink
    April 1, 2010 5:13 am

    Am re visiting as I loved this and glad I did to read your comment and what you were reminded of re the underground temple. I am definitely attracted to structure – artistic structure, because outwardly I’m not so like this myself! Yin attracted to yang (male like you mentioned with structure) principle? So I have much admiration for such things.
    And ‘that’ photo re birth that you commented on really has a similar energy to the type of energy emanating from Grey’s art.
    So much more to explore here with this post.
    x

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  1. Online Gratitude Journal March 2010 Edition #38 | Real Life Spirituality

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