Author: Aerin Alexander

4 Steps to Free Your Breath

Here’s something to think about: What one thing can you live without for only minutes?

Your breath!

We can go without food for between three to four weeks, without water for three to five days, but without air, only about three minutes—unless you’ve been especially trained, which may give you an extra two minutes of life without oxygen.

So it stands to reason that our breath is a key to our health and wellbeing—physically, mentally and spiritually. It influences our nervous system and consciousness.

When you wake up, there is a natural, involuntary shift in your breathing pattern that signals the brain that you are awake. When you’re falling asleep, your consciousness and breathing shift in tandem.

The more you are connected to your breath, the more you become aware of your breathing patterns and responses, the healthier you’re likely to be in body, mind and spirit. To facilitate this awareness, I’ve created something that I call BYB: Being with Your Breath.

BYB was inspired by my Spiritual Psychology Masters Program studies, and more deeply by the death of my mother four years ago of lung cancer. During her illness, I witnessed her desperation as she tried to grasp for air. In those difficult moments, I would guide her to be calm, allow the breath to come effortlessly and release the fear. “Don’t judge it, don’t fix it, just be with it” were my words for her.

It might seem easy to say, and hard to do, but it is profoundly helpful—on levels beyond what I’d first considered. Now I think of BYB as an approach to self-realization through the connection to and liberation of breath.

So what is BYB? How do you do it? You might be surprised, but this simple method includes just four easy-to-follow steps that you practice systematically. They are:

  1. Observe
  2. Acknowledge
  3. Appreciate
  4. Open to Divine Inspiration

Aerin BreathingObserve. Simply observe your breath As It Is. Notice what is happening in your body. Is your belly loose or tight? Notice how it rises and falls with each inhalation and exhalation.

There is no need to change anything or make it better. Just notice what is.

When you can observe your breath without judgment or interference, you free your body and your perceptive ability.

In the observer mode, your autonomic nervous system shifts from a sympathetic fight or flight state to a parasympathetic state. Your attention moves away from any negative thinking patterns to the physical sensory awareness of your breath. You become more calm.

Silence exists in the pauses between inhalation and exhalation.

Acknowledge. Now that we have noticed our breath, we have a wonderful opportunity to learn from it. What thoughts are there as you breathe? What might be at the root of your breathing pattern? What ideas, emotions, limitations, constrictions or fears might you be holding from the past?

Appreciate. Now that you have observed your breath and acknowledged your thoughts, you have the choice to let go of the thoughts and of the breath pattern you were engaged in, freeing yourself to breathe in an uninhibited way.

This is your chance to take ownership of what you acknowledged—whatever might be restricting you—and appreciate and release it. Acknowledge the Loving Essence of yourself and others. Let your breath break through the prison of judgment and flow freely, without conscious effort. This is full self-expression.

Open to Divine Inspiration. In this last step you are with your breath—in divine connection with Spirit and with all that surrounds you. Each breath you take is a reminder of your connection to the Divine, to your origin, to who you really are.

Being with your breath, you are in the present, aware, fully functioning. All is perfect as it is, and so is your breath.

The more we free our breath, the more we free our perception and are able to acknowledge the higher forces that guide our lives—even the force of our breath. We understand ourselves as part of a much larger consciousness than the “I” of daily life. We breathe in the now and all is well.

Love,
Aerin

One Dream Takes the Stage as Another Ends: The Act of Being Energy

Hello, everyone! I am Elizabeth Carrillo. I live in Mexico City, I am a Being Energy teacher, and I work in the theater. I am living a dream that is unfolding.

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I studied Drama, Literature and Acting in the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). After my graduation, some fellow students and I formed an experimental theater group. Our main goal with the group was self-knowledge and the exploration of awareness as applied to dramatic characters to make a scene vibrant.

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For years, we performed psycho-physical exercises and explored different acting styles. The method closest to our hearts, on account of having studied under teachers from the old USSR, was the one implemented by the actor and stage director Mikhail Chekhov (the newphew of the famous writer Anton Chekhov).

Chekhov was a man who suffered from deep depressions. It wasn’t until he came in contact with Indian philosophy, anthroposophy and eurythmy (expressive movement or dances aimed at transforming sound and color into motion, promoted by Rudolf Steiner), that his mood began to greatly improve. Eurythmy dances became an important part of the development of Chekhov’s acting method. He used to say that every actor should feel the inner life of the character and delve into his or her psychological states. Technique must be mastered, practiced and developed. He also placed a great deal of importance on physical training, so that the energy of the body could bring fluidity to actions. This energetic dynamism originates from within, and it should be congruous and integrated with external energy.

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We also read and researched the works of different theorists and methods that shared a similar purpose: evolution of the human being at the level of awareness and energy. Carlos Castaneda was among them. I remember that, during Castaneda workshops, when self-importance and reducing oneself to nothing was discussed, it was a very strong blow to my artistic and personal ego. I suppose the same thing happened to my companions from the actors’ group.

At the beginning, it was really hard for us to tell if we were on the right path. However, as we kept working on ourselves and practicing Energy movements for preparing our work on stage we realized that answers come each time we intended them from our humbleness and impeccability—toward ourselves and to others.

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For years, we have offered different performances that show our explorations as actors and the progress of our self-knowledge. The scenes that stem from these explorations are presented to small audiences who, before the performance, share with the actors the energetic warm-up, so that they can be more receptive to the sensations, emotions, ideas and feelings that their Energy bodies will receive. These scenes may be drawn from things such as a heartbeat or the fire in the Earth’s core. They are usually done with percussion, string, wind or metal instruments as accompaniment, and also with smells that make the energetic magic blossom in the theatre of life.

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Today, this group that formed twenty years ago out of our desire to enhance awareness and become better human beings is getting ready to end. We thank the place that has sheltered us all this time, and also our benefactor, the owner of that Big White Elephant. This ending will be a departure. The departure will be formalized by dreaming the stories that intertwined their energetic lines and thanking infinity for allowing us to corroborate the Energy of the Energy Body, realize a dream of our making, and keep our purpose of personal and creative learning.

Being Energy was there with my work in the theater, and I have implemented Being Energy exercises in acting workshops for professionals, because they are excellent both as a warm-up before stepping on stage and to reactivate the body and our Energy during the work process. These exercises keep us in the “here and now” that the scenes require.

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I also teach Being Energy movements during summer courses to kids between 6 and 12 years old; and also to teenagers, adults and seniors to help them bring dynamism to their bodies and their lives in a more harmonious way. I have also taught Being Energy movements in schools, mostly for junior high and high school students, and in formal acting lessons. I do this especially when we work with aspects of the tangible and intangible heritage of Mexico—like pre-Hispanic legends—to help create awareness of the importance of keeping, knowing and conserving the cultural heritage of Mexico, including its people.

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Thank you for allowing me to share this theater Dream which is being Dreamed in reality.

With Affection,

Elizabeth Carrillo

How Did My Heart Open?

What does it mean to have an open heart, and how do you get there? Here is how it happened for me, and why I’m inspired to help others open their hearts and lives.

I have almost always been connected to my emotions. It started in childhood as a survival mechanism: I was tuned to the emotions of those around me so that I would know when to approach them, or when to run! Emotions were my guides for making decisions, for taking action, for almost everything I did.

What I didn’t realize was that being aware of my emotions didn’t mean that my heart was open.

From the age of seven, I was a spiritual seeker. Back then, I didn’t feel connected to my mother or the rest of my family, and so I began a journey of seeking some greater connection and meaning. I explored the abstract ideas of God, Universe, and so on. When I was around 15 years old, my search brought me to the writings of Nietzsche and Carlos Castaneda, and to an examination of Zen Buddhism. At 19, I joined a Sufi dance group and then, finally, a few years later I actually met Castaneda and became one of his students.

Deep spiritual practice opened my whole being to a different way of thinking and seeing the world and myself. It expanded my idea of who I was, and of the possibilities in my life; it awoke my inner resources. I learned to speak a new language, earned a University degree, committed to my practice, became enthusiastic about my work, and started to learn what it means and how to love someone.

Castaneda was the most loving human being I have ever met. He was filled with energy, and was AWAKE. He was not only charismatic, incredibly funny and a true thinker, but he was also a very loving being. He truly cared for his students; he cared for others. He suggested to me that I get out of the “Cult of me, me, me” as he used to sing it, and truly care for another human being.

The “me, me, and me” fixed me to my “old news” story, and tied me to feeling sorry for myself. “Pobrecita,” I thought—no one loves me.

The proposition was, “Can you love someone, truly, unconditionally?” So I made the decision, 20 years ago, to truly open my heart and love unconditionally. That was the first step on a long process that continues unfolding today.
I fell—or actually, stood up—in Love with my dear partner, Miles. At the beginning, it was not easy. I didn’t want to date an Argentine guy, and was filled with so many opinions, judgments, fears an suspicions about his feelings towards me. I have many funny stories about how much I resisted being in partnership with him. The one thing that helped me to stay with it and with him was his unbending presence, which later on I experienced as his unbending love.

When my son was born, I experienced a blast of love, as if a dam that had held so much love suddenly burst open. Through the first years of raising our child and the related challenges, my heart has been continually opening. Opening, opening, opening. Every day gives me the chance to go deeply into my loving.

When someone I love says something that “I don’t like,” I know that I have the choice to “feel hurt and go on the me, me, me path” or to “go deeply into my loving.”

Lately, I have been choosing to go deeply into my ability to love everyone and everything: the parking ticket, the mistake I made at the bank when signing a check, forgiving my “forgettings” and loving each precious moment as it comes, as it flows inside and outside me.

It surprised me at first to discover how much easier it is to be with my heart wide open than to resist love. To keep the heart closed takes tons of energy!

Yes, it is a practice, and it is much more fun to do with other people. We’re so lucky to be with people to share the practice. Thank you to our lovely Path with Heart community for gathering every Sunday so that we can help each other open our hearts!

Are you interested in walking a Path with Heart? I invite you to join our classes, and wish you an open heart in whatever journey you undertake.

I love you all,
Aerin

 

3 Ways to Create the Relationships You Want

Have you ever wondered how to fall in love again with your husband after 20 years of being together?

What about how to renew your view of your friends, and let go of misinterpretations and judgments?

How can you rebuild new, long-lasting, loving relationships?

Our intimate relationships present rich learning opportunities for healing and inner growth. They make way for an inner awakening and spiritual development. Yet we can get stuck.

When something is not working, when we are not getting our way, we can choose to:

  1. Blame the other person or situation
  2. Take responsibility and acknowledge what we can change in us

At some point, we all fall into blaming the other, or pointing the finger at the situation. It happens! But there’s another way—a way that we can consciously take toward growth.

Is your friend to blame? Does your mother, father, friend or sibling need to change so that you can get along? Think again! What is the true issue? Could it be your interpretation of the other’s behavior rather than the behavior itself?

You can take charge of your thinking and create the harmonious relationships you want. And it’s easier than you might think.

One of the greatest gifts of consciousness and being self-aware is that we can choose what to think.

Let’s look at our relationship with money. Does money go out faster than it comes in? Is making money something that is only for others, less spiritually oriented? Can we only earn money through hard work? Are we deserving?

Unconscious beliefs about money can boycott the effort you make to pay your bills on time, or cause you to say no to a great job opportunity that would bring you more money.

Changing your relationship toward money, and toward everyone and everything comes down to three things:

  • Release any negative thought, image or feeling you are holding about the person or situation or thing
  • Rebirth your thoughts, images or feelings. Allow yourself to think, “Yes, money flows to me with ease,” “My partner is thoughtful,” or ”I can do well in that job.”
  • Rebuild a new identity for yourself that has a value and is grounded in truth. For example, you may want to donate money to an organization that’s important to you, or take a class that you feel will change things in your life, or be the person who spends quality time with your family.

Break free from beliefs that may be holding you back so that you can experience abundance in life. Explore the relationship between your ability to manifest and your beliefs about yourself, love, sex and money, and observe how your life changes.

How can we manifest wealth in all things when we feel that we’re not good enough? How can we let go of unhealthy relationships and be open for new ones? What needs to die so that something new can be born?

Birth and death are natural processes, and part of all of life. Everything dies at some point—everything has an expiration date. Sometimes you have to let go so that something new can come forth. If you hold onto things inappropriately, it can create disease-causing toxins accumulate in the form of shame, blame and judgment.

By understanding these processes and learning to organize your experience in new ways, new possibilities and awareness have room to unfold.

You suddenly find a solution to a long-standing financial issue, or an infection that took root heals at long last, or you find the right partner after having felt stuck around intimacy.

We invite you to join us beginning on Sunday, April 12th, for our new Path with Heart series and release, rebirth and rebuild!

We’ll use movement, ”now-ing” and more to successfully transform our relationships and clear the path for your energy to flow.

The Healing Power of Drumming

It is a great gift to know Suzanne Tribe, and to be having her join us for our BE workshop in Italy. She’s an amazing person, with a special ability to teach, inspire and guide others to heightened states of consciousness.

STSlider1We share here her thoughts on the power of drumming, its history on the planet, scientific validation of its healing effects and its place in modern culture and the Shamanic path. We think you’ll enjoy getting to know Suzanne! For more information on our Italy retreat, beginning April 24, please see Retreat + Module One Teacher Training, Beyond Age, Beyond Syntax: The Energy Body.

Suzanne’s insights on drumming for health and vitality:

Drumming was at the core of community life and healing in most ancient cultures around the world—from the Tuvan shamans in Siberia to the Machis in Chile, the Anatolian culture in ancient Turkey to the Shuar in the Amazon Rainforest, the Inuit in Alaska, the West African Yoruba people and the First Nation’s people in America.

image028Drumming was a way to communicate from one village to the next; drumming expressed the joy of gathering in celebration; drumming was the fabric of connection, collaboration and healing. Shamanic drumming was, and is, a key component of creating sacred space, honoring the earth and its directions, and intentionally shifting states of consciousness to retrieve information for healing, wellbeing and survival.

In certain parts of the world, particularly more secluded areas, this is still a way of life. I witnessed this when I traveled to the Andes in 1997 to do fieldwork on pre-Columbian drumming and chanting. In the small and beautiful town of Iruya, high up in the Andes, at a time of the yearly festivity, people travelled for days from afar, on foot or by horse, to come together in ceremony. There was drumming, dancing and singing for celebration, reunion, healing and in their words “to connect with mother earth and the cosmos.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI learnt from the Aymara and Quechua people in the Andes about the importance of the drum in everyday life and in ceremony. The drum is our connection to mother earth, Pacha Mama, our groundedness. The sound of our voices projected in singing or toning are our connection to the cosmos, to our dreams. And our heart is at the center, allowing the flow between earth and sky/cosmos. I have carried these teachings with me ever since and they are part of who I am as a music therapist, as teacher and performer, and overall as a being dreaming on this earth.

sunday_drum_circleIn the 60s and 70s, a return to drumming as a community experience took place. In the United States free form drum circles sprung up at beaches, in parks and at indoor facilities. Simultaneously culturally specific drum circles were generated, and soon to follow came the facilitated community drum circles. In the 80s, with the shift in health care to more complementary and integrative models, a growing interest in drumming as a holistic tool emerged. Nowadays, there is a growing focus on drumming for health purposes in clinical settings, hospitals, psychiatric facilities, schools, private practices, etc.

Golden-Gate-Park-Drum-Circle_CroppedAs a music therapist, I have experienced the healing power of rhythm and drumming in helping patients to relax or become more energized as needed; in supporting premature infants to stabilize their heart rate and breathing rate; and in promoting parent-infant bonding (with the ocean drum and toning), drumming for stress release, drumming for caregivers in ‘caring for the caregiver’ programs, and in other situations.

Research has been conducted on drumming effects on health. A groundbreaking study by Barry Bittman, M.D. published in 2001, found that one hour of group drumming according to a specific protocol called HealthRHYTHMS, boosted the immune system and showed an increase in NK (natural killer) cell activity in participants. Subsequent studies by Bittman showed evidence that group drumming can lower stress, improve mood states and reduce burnout. (For more information about these studies, see http://www.remo.com/portal/pages/hr/research/index.html.)

79408_community-rhythm-circles-and-african-drumming-classesThe present trend shows that drumming for health and wellbeing seems to be making its way back into our culture. What about shamanic drumming?

Shamanic drumming for intentionally shifting one’s state of consciousness and journeying to other layers of awareness is a path I have been learning, practicing and guiding others along for the past 10 years. It includes creating sacred space, honoring the directions, setting intentions and journeying to non-ordinary states of consciousness and back, and includes the process of integrating the experience.

I’d like to conclude with these seven reflections on drumming:

  1. Drumming brings us into the here and now. Babatunde Olatunji, often considered to have inspired the return to the drum circle experience in North America, is quoted as saying: “Yesterday is the past, tomorrow is the future, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.”
  1. Drumming is communication and expression without words.
  1. Drumming energizes us and can help us release tension.
  1. Drumming can intentionally shift our consciousness (assemblage point).
  1. Drumming with intention is powerful.
  1. Drumming can align us with our natural rhythms and the rhythms of nature.
  1. Drumming can align us with the rhythms of the universe.

IMG_2299Suzanne Tribe MA, MT-BC

Suzanne Tribe is a music therapist who conducts group empowerment drumming events for wellbeing and community building in the US and Argentina. Suzanne has performed extensively in a variety of world music genres, and at the University of Buenos Aires she taught dance majors the use of creative vocal expression. Her most recent CD with traditional songs from the Andes is Songs from Mother to Daughter.

“MY INTENT IS TO BRING THE HEALING AND TRANSFORMATIVE POWER OF DRUMMING, CHANTING and MUSIC INTO THE WORLD!” says Suzanne.

Visit Suzanne on Facebook

Freedom of Perception and Wonder: Our Time in the Yucatan

Energy can move in magical ways. It moved that way at last month’s BE workshop in Chichén Itzá.

We’ve been back in LA for a couple of weeks already, and we still feel it in our bodies and minds and spirits. We continue to dream it and see how that potent experience is creating something new. Undoubtedly, a liberating and fundamental change happened for all who were there with us.

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What an honor and delight it was to share those four unforgettable days with our amazing workshop participants! Discovering a freedom of perception, and embodying it every day.

From specialized movements to discover and support our purpose, to the inspiring awe of being at this singular, powerful place on the planet, our time in the Yucatan nourished all of us.


What did we take home?

  • What it means to have purpose
  • Discovery of purpose
  • A vision of how purpose looks in our daily lives
  • A sense of humbleness and wonder
  • An understanding of reciprocity
  • The experience of silence
  • An opening of perception

What we remember:

  • A deep exploration, experience and sharing
  • Finding humbleness
  • Misty mornings in the silent city of the Maya
  • Hearts opening to the mystery of the singing pyramid
  • A strong feeling of the wisdom of the Maya and Toltec people
  • The experience of awe when gazing at Kukulcan pyramid
  • Resting our backs on the walls of the temple of the warriors[separator top=”20″]ChiChenItza

Our appreciation for all of you who participated in this workshop is unbounded. We walk our path with fresh energy and the doors of perception opened wide.

IMG_0991Some of you are continuing the experience begun in the Chichén Itzá workshop in our online follow-up program. We look forward to our continued journey there, and in Being Energy’s other workshops and online classes: BeSkilled!, Path with Heart, Nutrition + Health and daily Mind + Body + Spirit classes.

We’ll soon be in Italy, and we know that our Being Energy workshop setting there will flavor the teaching in a special, beautiful way.

With gratitude,
Aerin, Miles and Axel

Reciprocity: My Encounter with Being Energy + with My Own Power

To my fellow travelers, to my grandmother Tava

On the path

We are all travel companions.
No matter where we come from,
Or where we are going.
The end brings us together,
And it certainty frees us.
We are free to walk the trails,
We are free to make new trails.

My name is Crisólogo. I was born in a very small town of the Chontal people, in the Southern Sierra Madre, State of Oaxaca, Mexico. I grew up surrounded by traditions and beliefs—fear of sorcery among them. My family attributed the illnesses and deaths of several relatives to the actions of sorcerers who hired out their services.

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In my town, I learned about “reciprocity”—sharing something without expecting anything in return. During town festivals, women dance to the tune of wind instruments in a ceremony called regada de frutas (spilling of fruits), where they toss seasonal fruits into the air for the attendants to grab all they can. The community also offers a meal to all the visitors and locals, with a sense of total humbleness. There is a practical teaching in the region about mutual support. There is even a word depicting it: guelaguesear, which means helping each other on even terms, without money exchange involved. It is full reciprocity as a social group.

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When I was 11 years old, I moved away from my parents so that I could receive an education. I enrolled in a boarding school to study for three years, and then went to the university, coming back to my hometown only during the holidays.

Since 1990, I have worked in the financial office of an institution of the Mexican Government that manages loans for farmers. Interactions and routines carry a great deal of stress in the office and after some time, I developed digestive issues and high blood pressure. I started taking medications in 2003 to address chronic colitis, and in 2010 I had to see a doctor due to an imbalance in my blood pressure.

My path has been winding. Sometimes this means that I have walked in solitude, searching for my purpose, for my energy body.

My grandmother Tava has been an important teacher to me. She insisted that many illnesses are caused by ailments in our thoughts—by forgetting events in which our spirit got trapped in the ground, right in the place where the events occurred. The most harmful thoughts are sadness, anger and fright. To heal, one must recall the event clearly, and talk to the Earth to ask her to free our spirit. The Earth is our “big mother,” and she knows everything, my grandmother said. She pointed out that in order to recall an event of the past, one must pay attention to the dreams, because they let us know about it.

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In 1994, I married Carmen. It happened that I did not invite a certain colleague from work to the ceremony, and when he and I met afterwards he confronted me and I had to come up with some excuse. He told me that, as a gift for the future, he would recommend two books to me that, according to him, would help me in the new stage in my life. Time passed and I did not do anything to get them, but he kept asking me if I had liked them. I told him that I did not have the chance to get them, even though in fact I hadn’t even tried looking for them.

One day, we went shopping in a supermarket. In our way out of the store, next to the cashiers, I saw some mirrors and walked closer to them to fix my hair. At that very moment, I saw two books on a shelf and I felt the impulse to check them out… they were the two books my friend had recommended, sitting there as if waiting for me.

In one of them, I found the quote: “A man has four natural enemies: fear, clarity, power, and old age. Fear, clarity, and power can be overcome, but not old age. Its effect can be postponed, but it can never be overcome.” I found out who the author was, and got the complete works of the Nagual Carlos Castaneda. I had started on my quest and taken a new path, a path with heart—even if just on a beginner’s level.

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I learned about workshops of Carlos Castaneda’s movements in the year 2000, and attended them on a regular basis, keeping up an individual practice, but unable to maintain consistency through time.

In these circumstances, a fellow traveler invited me to a Being Energy workshop in 2013. I did attend and was pleased with the proposition of the Extended Teacher Training. I saw this as an opportunity to be consistent in my practice—something I had yet to achieve.

Before the Chichen Itza workshop in 2014, I found myself at a crossroads. My uncle, who had been as my brother when I was a child, died one day before the trip to the workshop. I needed to choose between going to his funeral or to the workshop. I arranged all the details with my family and went to the workshop. I gave myself completely to the practice, and during the silence exercise, in front of the pyramid, the feeling of reciprocity came to me: “attending the workshop should have a purpose”. And this purpose was teaching the knowledge that life had given me the chance to learn, as a selfless act and as an offering to the spirit, in thankfulness for what I have received, without waiting for the perfect condition of moment.

So in October 2014, I started teaching a group of approximately 10 people. Teaching them has taken me to new levels of commitment and responsibility towards them and towards myself as well. That same year, I also participated in the Being Energy Detox Program and the Nutrition classes.

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In other words, I made two decisions: One “inwards” to heal my body; and the other one “outwards” to share what I have with others in the spirit of reciprocity, with great humbleness and with the mood to keep learning through teaching.

The Detox Program has made me learn new things about physical health, presented new views, and given me improved health. My blood pressure has stabilized, and the colitis is gone.

As part of my new view, I have learned to cook and I enjoy being able to prepare meals for my family. It hasn’t been easy. The monster of 1,000 heads–the ego—shows up continuously; but each time I have more defenses and it becomes easier to deal with it.

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I am happy with the results. I feel stronger, with greater vitality.

After one year of treatment and intensity in my practices, I visited my family back in town and they were scared when they saw me. “What’s up with you? Are you sick?” they asked, “You look very thin.” One of them whispered in my ear, “I don’t want to think that you are sick. I think you are dieting or doing a lot of exercise.” “Both,” I told him. It reminded me of how the teachers struck me when I saw them for the first time during a workshop. “They either don’t eat or their whole life is exercising all day long,” I thought.

I am better acquainted with my body every day, and have become more aware that we harm ourselves the most, and that others cannot do that to us. The type of sorcery of which I was scared as a child is an issue of personal power, and we all have personal power. And that power should help us to give more, to commit, to share and enjoy this wonderful journey that is life itself.

I have been endeavoring to be more prepared in the context of the shamanistic knowledge: Handling energy, the freedom of my energy body as a purpose through unbending intent and with a greater awareness of it at all times, accruing inner silence.

I conceive knowledge as something systemic. That is how I see Being Energy—a comprehensive, integrative system that allows entrance to the warrior’s mood and to being on the path with heart, offering the best of us.

With affection,

Crisólogo

Sounds of the Spirit

Dear Being Energy Community,

Quetzal Calls – The Pyramid of Kukulcan Sings!

As Miles and I prepare for our second trip to the Yucatán, to the magical city of Chichén Itza, we have some information to share with you that will make the hairs on the back of your neck rise!

What do we know about the Maya? More than just a Mesoamerican civilization that began around 3,000 BC, the Maya were (and are) extraordinary, with a culture that was complex and magical. Known for mind-blowing astronomical, mathematical, artistic and architectural developments, the Maya built hundreds of cities that contained schools, libraries, hospitals, sports arenas and observatories (they predicted eclipses and the rising and setting of Venus). The ruins of their cities tell a story of stunning intelligence and a strongly developed artistic culture, and visiting these ruins can be life changing.

The Maya created the concept of zero before the Europeans—a BIG DEAL if you really think about it. They developed complex and accurate calendars that tracked the cycles of the sun, moon, and planets thousands of years into the future, correctly.

The Maya also invented chocolate from cocoa beans—(not the Swiss!) and a detailed writing system (only 4 other cultures ever did that!).

And… The Maya never vanished. Even though their largest cities were abandoned 1,000 years ago for reasons still unknown, the Maya survived. As don Regi a Mayan shaman, told us in Guatemala a few years ago “We are nomads that walk a path with heart. We were not conquered by anyone and we will never be. We are free.”

The Maya people and knowledge live today beyond national and linguistic boundaries. You can find Mayan people in Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Belize, for example. They speak many languages, including Mayan languages (Yucatec, Quiche, Kekchi and Mopan), Spanish and English.

Now here’s the amazing thing, the thing we want to tell you about: The Maya also built pyramids that sing! The pyramid Kukulcan (Quetzalcoatl, or the ‘plumed-serpent”) in Chichén Itza was built somewhere between 500 – 900 AC. See picture.

For the Maya, the quetzal’s feathers as well as its cry were sacred. The cult of Kukulkan spread beyond the Maya, though. It was the first Mesoamerican religion to transcend linguistic and ethnic divisions. In fact, this cult facilitated communication and peaceful trade among peoples of many different social and ethnic backgrounds.

The Kukulcan pyramid, also known as “El Castillo,” has four 80-foot-tall sides, each with 91 steps. A platform at the top adds the final step to equal 365 steps—one step for every day of the year.

A handclap at the base of Kukulcan’s staircase generates what scientists call a “chirped eco” that first ascends and then falls, just like the cry of the native quetzal—the very bird that the Mayans believed carried messages of the Spirit/Gods. Handclaps from different positions along the base of the staircase likewise trigger the echo—but with different musical tones spanning half an octave.

Also, during the spring and fall equinoxes, the sun projects a pattern of light on the northern stairway for a few hours in the late afternoon—it creates an undulating shadow that looks like a serpent, caused by the angle of the sun and the edge of the nine steps that define the pyramid’s construction.

How did they do this so very long ago, without Internet, phones, or even a simple calculator?

We will be there in a few days clapping and connecting to the Spirit and Magic of the Maya.

Join us in person or in spirit,

Aerin & Miles

Energy, Awareness and Movement

Knowing Ourselves through Movement

In Being Energy, we consider movement as the departure point for enhancing the awareness of who we are and how we relate to the world around us. When we talk about movement, we refer not only to the physical act of moving our limbs, for example, but also to the mental attention required to know which leg we’re moving first, if right or left, or the breathing pattern associated with the way we move our right leg versus our left, and the memories and emotions stored in past experiences, and, most importantly, the perception of ourselves moving through space.

Carlos Castaneda inspired and encouraged me to practice movement daily—to make it a “must do,” with the purpose of finding the trail of energy that aligns all the parts of myself into one single energetic unit. He urged me to connect to the core, or to the alignment of all of what I am through movement. The seers of ancient Mexico characterized us are luminous beings held together by a vibratory force that they referred to as “intent”—the same force that holds stars in place.

Physical movement done with attention and purpose, he said, can forge the link to our vibratory force, the core of who we are as physical and energetic beings. Movement can lead to states of high alertness and awaken consciousness, creating an alignment of the whole self, our physical tangible parts and our energetic invisible parts.

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Some professional athletes dramatically exhibit this kind of connection, such as an ice dancer flipping and turning in the air, landing powerfully, with grace, giving a breathtaking and breath-giving moment to all of us watching it!

But we don’t need to be a pro athlete to experience a connection to our center and sustain it as we go through daily life. There is something called “somatic education,” meaning that we can learn to sense and feel through movement, which is a beautiful way to start the journey.

Somatic education supports this exploration of knowing ourselves as energy first. I studied and taught somatic education for more than a decade, and observed its many benefits, including the personal experience of it helping me to heal unhealthy psychological-motor patterns and develop a clearer experience of myself as grounded and connected to my whole self. For example, I learned to stand up without projecting my lower ribs forward (a habit that had caused chronic back pain) and to free my breath by lifting the arches of my feet and to think and perceive without the unnecessary facial contortions, like frowning or raising my eyebrows.

I’d like to share with you an article about somatic education by Tomas Hanna. It is an introduction to what it is, where it came from, its pioneering teachers and its contribution to the field of health and consciousness. In Hanna’s own words, somatic education is the use of sensory-motor learning to gain greater voluntary control of one’s physiological process. It is ‘somatic’ in the sense that the learning occurs within the individual as an internalized process.

 Somatic educuation is based on self-teaching, self-learning, self-healing, and self-regulation. We find the “what” and the “how” through exploration and paying attention as we move through space, as we EXPERIENCE OURSELVES. There are several schools and methods of somatic education, which include:

Most of the explorations involve sensory perception and movement as the means of increasing one’s own awareness.

The Feldenkrais Institute

See Tomas Hanna’s Article.

To learn more about movement, watch our videos.

There is so much more to be said about somatic education, but I hope this is an interesting start for you!

Aerin

Energy to Follow Your Dreams

Dear Being Energy Community,

Hello Everyone, my name is Keyco Sergio Contestí.

I live in the city of Buenos Aires and want to tell you how I worked on a dream and how it taught me about the endless resources I didn’t know I had.  I currently work as an instructor of  yoga and Being Energy®.  I also advise on the art of Feng Shui with Chinese astrology.

Both Chinese philosophy and the vision of shamanism through the teachings of Carlos Castañeda, through his books and seminars, has helped me to understand the life of a simple and comprehensive way of being.  These teachings became axes that enabled me to embody the practices of Chi Kung, yoga and Being Energy.  They have consolidated for me a belief system in which I live the laws of nature and mystery, with access to the magical power that we possess. These integrative visions allow me to navigate without contradictions by following different grooves, different energetic pathways as art, Taoism, psychology, music, tantra and everything that awakens my curiosity.   One of these interests is Permaculture, where I would like to share with you my dream.

Permaculture is a sustainable, designed system that harmoniously integrates housing and landscape, conserving materials and producing less waste, while natural resources are preserved; it involves designing sustainable human habitats and agricultural systems, which mimic the relationships found in the patterns of nature (for more information and inspiration, you might want to read Bill Mollison’s writings).

I was able to observe this experience personally, for the first time on a visit to an organic farm called Gaia which was a pleasantly surprising experience.  I decided to take courses in bioconstruction in La casa de Tierra de Oliveros, a few kilometers from Andino, the town where my family lives.  Both the people and the knowledge transmitted by the land were generous and inspiring.

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I usually travel to Andino to visit my family, which is about 350 kms from the city where I live.  It is a village surrounded by countryside and fields crossed by the river Carcarañá. There was a plot of land there with a house project stalled for several years that brought me much grief and a profound sense of abandonment.  Associated with this situation was something I saw in my family and me. That is why I decided to transform it and bring light to that place, and, therefore, to our lives.

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I started actualizing this dream three years ago, coming and going with a van full of things, which I found or bought in town for the cabin. I took what I learned in the bioconstruction courses, while simulataneously using new construction techniques, recycling doors, windows, furniture, etc.

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It was very hard work, but little by little my body was adjusting to the effort. Even today I do not consider it finished; there is always something to do. After many years working with Feng Shui, I was able to bring this vision to the cottage, experience and learn more about this ancient knowledge, that goes hand-in-hand with bioconstruction.

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The house was built by trial and error. In the middle of this adventure, my father, whom I deeply appreciate for his help, his example of solving problems, and so much more, left this world. With bewilderment, grief, strong will and love, I continued. I used all the tools at hand to build the cabin and work with the land and livestock, which increased my health and morale.

This dream would not have been sustainable without the help of my partner, my mother and father, my brothers, cousins, uncles, nephews, friends, artists, teachers, the whole family of Being Energy, all the pets, the river, the divine help, support from ancestors, financial support, support of good ideas, the experience of hands in the mud, the help of empowering words and many more. Thank you with all my heart.

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As you may have noticed I share an interest in many things. I want to also tell you that I love to express myself artistically. So, when I can, I connect with music, dance, poetry, and, lately, I am daring to paint.

If you want to see, you may access it through Facebook: name Nirankar Keyco.

Here are links to my music:

“El Eterno Sol”

https://soundcloud.com/keikokeiko
https://myspace.com/universo.en.flor/music/songs
https://soundcloud.com/integrante2014

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Thank you for this beautiful space.