“When we become aware that we do not have to escape our pains, but that we can mobilize them into a common search for life, those very pains are transformed from expressions of despair into signs of hope” – Henri Nouwen
Faculty 3: Meditation
SohamTake comfort in the web of life (f3) The Soham mantra is often referred to as the “universal mantra” because the sound vibrations are synonymous with our natural breath. Considering there are over 7 billion people in the world taking about 20,000 breaths a day, this is a lot of Soham in the air! So = is the sound of inhalation (and therefore inspiration) Hum = is the sound of exhalation. Soham is not to be confused with Eeyore’s “ho hum” because they are very different in deed. Rather than seeing life as dull and drab, Soham celebrates an “I am that I am that I am that” attitude, fostering a deep sense of universality. A wonderful tale to illustrate the Soham meaning is the Buddha’s Mustard Seed Story. Listen to So Hum:
Triangle MudraAn inverted triangle symbolizes a vessel for creation—8 fingers directed in a single focus toward the pubic bone – as if denoting our foundation while the thumbs underline our naval as if launching the expansion of our personal power. Positioning the Triangle Mudra on our center of gravity acts as a compass for energy flow.
In Practice:Muse: Like the trunk of a tree our legs root downward towards the earth so that we may stand tall – lifting heart & brow upward towards the sky...
- Connect inner tips of index fingers,
- Seal thumb tops to make a triangle shape with index fingers.
- Position middle, ring and baby fingers adjacent to index fingers. Flip this triangle downward pointing and place hands on lower belly.
- Place outer blades of baby fingers at “granny panty line” to differentiate leg from hip, Reach 8 fingers south to pubic bone & underline navel with thumbs.
- Like a karate chop, push baby finger blades against legs to create a clear boundary & pull thumbs a part as if stuck in a “Chinese finger trap” toy for kids.
- Imagine the triangle is a looking glass and stare deeply inward to scan and sketch the balls of the femurs. Spend time individuating each one— learning the differences and similarities in how the left one feels… and how the right one feels…
- Inhale pull thumbs, Exhale push baby finger blades into legs, 8 breath cycles.