For the past several months, I’ve been taking a yoga class. Today’s class was especially relaxing. We always start and end with shavasana, which involves lying down on a yoga mat. It doesn’t get any gentler than that.
In between the two shavasanas, we do some mild stretching, yawning, twisting, rocking, and balancing … nothing difficult. I go there for the relaxation factor. It’s literally the most relaxing part of my whole week, including the parts of my week while I’m asleep.
Today we did something at the end of class, during shavasana, that was so enjoyable for me that I wanted to share it with you. It was a guided observation that went something like this:
“Imagine yourself holding a mortar in your left hand, and a pestle in your right hand.
Now imagine everything that makes you sick or causes you pain dropping into your mortar, pebble by pebble.
Now take your right hand and grind your pebbles into a fine dust.
Now blow the dust away. Let it disappear.
Now imagine that every cell in your body is being filled up with a beautiful golden light.
Let the light warm you and envelop you. Enjoy your beautiful golden light.
(After a minute or two of enjoying the sensations created by our imaginations, we continued.)
Now release the light into the atmosphere. Just let it gently fade away.”
I’ve experienced relaxation exercises before, but never like this. This one was special for me. I think it was because it began with the image of something very tangible: a mortar and pestle that I could hold in my hands. The directions were very specific. Mortar in left hand, pestle in right. Grind, grind, grind. Blow. Pouff! Gone.
And then, cells. Lots of them. And warm golden light. All very physical, very real to me. I imagined myself as a beehive.
I really liked this exercise. Grinding the pebbles into dust made me feel strong. Blowing them away gave me a sense of relief. Then each cell in my body filling up with warm, golden honey made me feel like I glowed. I think my head was even buzzing.
I didn’t want to release the light, but I knew I couldn’t lie there in shavasana forever, so I came back to reality. But even after I had done so, some of the energy of the golden light remained. I felt calm and energized at the same time.
I thought it was a very effective imagery exercise, and I just wanted to share it with you.