Ancient Strategies for Cultivating Inner Peace

September 1st, 2017

Ancient Strategies for Cultivating Inner Peace

 

“A trigger is something that sets off a memory tape or flashback transporting the person back to the event of her/his original trauma.”

-from psychcentral.com

 

By now, most of you know about the ancient practice of meditation as a way of developing a state of inner peace. This is a useful practice of engaging “not doing” or the feminine aspect of ourselves.  The ancient ones also saw a need to activate the “doing” or masculine aspect of ourselves in some instances where we are emotionally triggered by someone or something in order to gain self-mastery.  This is best epitomized in the “Serenity Prayer” that emphasizes that we cannot control anything but our own responses in life: “Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.”

 

Conscious awareness of the pattern that is not working is the first step to any transformation.  When we interrupt harmful patterns in these active ways, their grip on us diminishes and new patterns that are more life giving will form from our inner wisdom over time.  What happens at a physiological level is that our bodies start to form new neural pathways instead of reinforcing the old ones in the brain that no longer benefit us. Since triggers are deeply personal and individual, our inner wise ones will give each of us different intuitive information for how to navigate life when we are in our triggered states.

 

However, our ancestors also developed strategies to engage our imagination and will simultaneously to support us in balancing our inner space. I personally have done each of these myself and share them in the spirit of supporting others who tell me they are struggling with reactivity. What follows are some “active” strategies that are really effective alongside traditional meditations, which bring awareness to the triggers themselves.  

 

  •  Cutting Cords:  Imagine that every time someone or something triggers an emotional response in us that they are “strumming” a cord that is already there somewhere inside of us.  In other words, the cord is a pattern from the past that is no longer working.  See if you can identify what triggered you and imagine cutting it from its source in your body with a pair of imaginary scissors.  If you can’t figure out what the trigger is, just cut away from the feeling of it.

 

  •  Energy Bubble:  Imagine that you can contain your own space or personal “bubble” at will by choosing what comes in, stays in, and must go out of your personal space.  Know that you always have control of this because your space belongs to you and no one else.  You can command anything out of your space that you don’t want there at any time.  When you are going into a stressful situation or find yourself in one, you can quickly imagine drawing a red circle around yourself and throwing energy you don’t want in our space out of the red circle.  Red is a protective colour that is utilized in many traditions to create a safe ceremonial container.  You need not draw a physical red line for this technique to be effective; I’ve utilized it on long plane rides when I feel my energy field getting overwhelmed.  

 

  •  Center of Gravity (COG): Just below your belly button at the center of your body is your COG.  This is the place where martial artists focus all their energy.  It is where our inner wise one lies.  When our focus is on our COG, we feel calm and collected–even in stressful situations.  When we are stressed, we tend to let our energy float up to our heart or head and this makes it hard for us to make good decisions.  Practice imagining that a net is coming over your head and body and pulling your energy (including your thoughts) down to your COG, allowing your inner wise one to guide you through the stressful situation to come to a resourceful solution.  If it is hard for you to keep your energy down, consider taping an earth magnet to your COG to support you in learning how to do this (you can buy these on the Internet).  

 

Any time we give or cut something away, an energetic vacuum is naturally created.  To add balance to the cutting away it can be helpful to “fill” the space with something we want to attract more of.  This helps us in our goal of self-mastery. What follows is a strategy for attracting what we want more of in our lives:

 

With your hands on your body (could be your heart or COG even):

 

I accept______ into my space (i.e. self-love, peace, acceptance, calmness).

 

You can even tap these into your body to integrate them into your system.  Allow the feeling of them to melt into your body and become a part of you.

 

You don’t have to have a spiritual practice or even have spiritual beliefs to benefit from these techniques.  If you struggle to keep your center in challenging situations, these could be helpful to you in tapping into your inner strength and innate wisdom.  Our minds are so powerful that even imagining yourself in a new state is enough to help you transcend a triggered state.  I invite you to experiment with them and see if anything changes in your daily experience of life.  If not, then no harm is done.

 

***

 

About the author:

 

Jennifer Engrácio has been a student of shamanism since 2005. Jennifer is a certified teacher who has worked with children in many different education settings since 2001. She is a certified shamanic coach, reiki master, and lomilomi practitioner; in addition, she runs Spiral Dance Shamanics. Originally from Vancouver, Canada, she now lives in Calgary, Canada with her life partner.

Engrácio participated in self-publishing three books that are now available:

The Magic Circle: Shamanic Ceremonies for the Child and the Child Within”

Women’s Power Stories: Honouring the Feminine Principle of Life”

 

 

Dreaming of Cupcakes: A Food Addict’s Shamanic Journey into Healing

For more information go to: www.spiraldanceshamanics.com

 


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