So far in my blog posts I have written about self compassion, loving kindness, forgiveness, oneness and how all these play a significant role in dealing with criticism, judgement and unpleasant interactions. But until now we have discussed only about that part of our ego which attacks and responds with anger. We have discussed sacred practices like compassion, forgiveness and loving kindness with respect to releasing that part of our ego which is the attacker.
But what about that aspect of the ego which defends? The moment someone judges us or says something mean to us, our ego or the fear mind or the monkey mind immediately gets defensive. We may have noticed this when we feel tensed or there is a tightness in our chest or our breath becomes shallow. This aspect of our mind is really helpful when it comes to understanding if its safe to help a stranger or share official information with someone as it plays a major role in keeping us safe and protected. But when our ego starts getting defensive every time someone judges us or criticises us, it creates misery and suffering by convincing us that we are constantly being attacked.
The moment someone says something negative about you, the fear mind goes like “DANGER, DANGER!” and instantly gets defensive without even realising that what the other person feels or says about you is just a set of thoughts their monkey mind has produced in response to your actions.
We need to realise that we are the light and this light cannot be harmed or defeated in any way. To disable the defensive patterns of the ego, here are some exercises which help us in connecting with the source.
BREATHING PRACTICE BY MATT KAHN
Take a nice long deep inhale, as if you are breathing in the soothing aroma of something you love like freshly baked cookies, chocolate, warm brewed coffee, incense, sandalwood or anything else. Hold your breath for a moment and exhale out through your mouth slowly and softly as if you are blowing out bubbles from a bubble maker. This beautiful practice has helped me calm down my restless mind to some extent.
GROUNDING AND MELTING EXERCISE
This is a quick sacred practice I use when I am feeling too overwhelmed. A part of it is inspired from the book “A choice for love” written by Dr. Barbara de Angelis.
Stand barefoot on the ground with your arms by your sides and your palms facing forwards. Now close your eyes and shift your inner gaze to your legs. Is your weight equally distributed between your two legs? If not, try to balance a little better. Now imagine roots growing from the bottom of your feet and reaching upto the heart of mother earth. Breathe in love from her heart centre, breathe out all pain and let it go. Take a few deep breaths here and now shift your inner gaze to your heart centre. Notice any areas of hardening or tightness. Now very slowly, soften and melt. And soften and melt. And soften and melt. Feel the warm flow of love within your heart centre.
I offer you the following healing mantra and pray that you receive it with love. Use this mantra anytime throughout your day or just before bedtime so that it is instilled in your subconscious belief system and enables you to leave the old patterns behind.
I am the light, the light I am
I am the light, the light I am cannot be damaged.
I am the light, the light I am cannot be broken.
I am the light, the light I am cannot be destroyed.
I am the light, the light I am cannot be defeated.
I am the light, the light I am cannot be overpowered.
I am the light, the light I am cannot be caged.
I am the light, the light I am needs no shielding.
I am the light, the light I am needs no guarding.
I am the light, the light I am is not under any threat.
I am the light, the light I am need not fear anything.
I am the light, the light I am is always and always safe and eternal.
I am the light, the light I am knows no separation.
I am the light, the light I am knows no judgement.
I am the light, the light I am knows only love.
I am the light, the light I am knows only compassion.
I am the light, the light I am recognises the light they are.
Sit down comfortably on a chair or cross legged on a mat or your bed. Make sure that you are in a safe and comfortable place where you can relax and will not be disturbed for the next few minutes. All the sounds in the background, the chirping of birds, the sounds of kids playing or the crackling sounds of the fireplace will only take you deeper and deeper.
Take a nice long deep letting go breath, inhaling to the count of four and exhaling to the count of eight. Once again, another long deep letting go breath, inhaling to the count of four and exhaling to the count of eight. Now take such two more deep breaths and feel yourself grounded and relaxed.
Now see your guardian angels forming a protective bubble of light around you and tranporting you to an enchanted land. What does the place look like? Is it a mystical forest with fairies and magical creatures, an enchanted castle or a beautiful kingdom in the higher skies. Allow your bubble to land gently and send a heartfelt call to your spirit guide. It maybe a unicorn guide, a fairy guide, a Goddess or God or a glowing source of light. Allow your guide to hold you in their embrace.
Now focus your soft inner gaze on your third eye and bring to mind all the judgements and expectations you have placed upon yourself. Do you see yourself as lazy or homesick? Do you feel you eat too much or sleep too less? Whatever labels you have placed upon yourself now is the time to release them. This meditation is inpired by Matt Kahn’s golden words of compassion which are,”Everyone is doing the best they can. If they could do better, they would.” Now you are going to acknowledge the fact that you are doing and being your best. Even if your ego shows up some resistance, keep going.
Now affirm the following silently in your mind or out loud to yourself.
I am melting into the love I am, I am the love
Keep on repeating this affirmation and melting and softening all the hardened zones of yourself. Melt into the innocence you are, release, relax and melt even more. Go on melting yourself for as long as you wish and once you are done, take a nice long deep letting go breath.
Now bring to mind all those souls upon whom you have placed any judgements. Maybe its your boss who scares you or your co-worker who annoys you or a friend who has betrayed you. Bring them to mind and allow yourself to honor all your feelings.
Now start repeating the following affirmations out loud or silently in your mind.
I am melting into the compassion I am, I am the compassion.
Keep on repeating and melting and melting as you dissolve yourself completely.
Thank you (name of the person) for doing your best.
Acknowledging the fact that we all are doing our best on this blessed journey, release all judgement and melt.
Now thank your beloved guides and see your guardian angels bringing you back to this earth realm. Fold your hands in front of your heart and slowly open your eyes. Ground yourself with some water and stretching.