For most people, yoga and spiritual practices are associated with an “upward” motion.
We meditate, practice yoga and pranayama, concentrate on the “Third eye”, try to connect with our “Higher Self,” activate the higher chakras, soar to the Higher planes of existence, ascend, and enlighten—all the while forgetting that everything begins with Earth.
Spiritual ascension begins with Grounding. For a tree to reach the clouds without dying, it must have strong, supportive roots that reach far down into the Earth. We all stand on Earth and arose from Earth. If we want to reach the Heavens, our connection to Earth and our rootedness must be stronger and deeper the higher we want to rise.
As above so below.
A lack of Grounding is a consequence of the modern way of life, and the chronic condition in 99% of city dwellers. Our connection with Earth has been severely weakened. We spend the majority of our lives wearing shoes. We do not live, work, sit, or sleep on directly on the Earth. Our feet, with their thousands of nerve endings, have forgotten what it feels like to touch skins with the Earth. Hundreds of biologically active points on the feet cease to be active. Sensory and energy connections, both with the Earth and throughout the body, have atrophied. The modern way of life has led us far from nature and our natural needs, for which we have had to pay the price with neuroses, psychosis, depression, and various physical dysfunctions.
For anyone working toward inner growth, the primary goal should be Grounding, the creation of a powerful energetic and physical base, a sturdy foundation on which the psyche, physical health, and energy will be based and on which all further practice will be built.
Without appropriate Grounding, attempts to force the opening of the upper centers—through yoga, breath, and spiritual practices or techniques aimed at opening the upper centers and suppressing the lower ones—serve to increase the already-present energy imbalance between the upper and lower centers. This can lead to irreversible consequences, such as destabilizing the body for years to come, intensifying previously dormant psychological and psychosomatic pathologies, and completely halting the individual’s spiritual development.
Scientists have shown that stress generates an excess of positively charged particles in the body. These particles create a chronic tension in all the systems of the body. According to the laws of physics and energetics, this excess of electric potential can be removed by conducting it out of the body, into the negatively-charged Earth.
The gateway for conducting excess positively-charged stress energy is the 1st (Muladhara) chakra and its two auxiliary chakras, the Pada chakras located on the soles of the feet. When the feet are clogged and ungrounded, stress energy accumulates. Emotional tension, mood swings, depression, inner dissatisfaction, and lack of inner Strength or “solid ground” all point to a weakened connection with Earth, to the fact that the excess positively-charged particles are not being properly conducted away. Our physical, nervous, and energy systems cannot be healthy and stable if their Grounding function is weak.
Practicing Energy Grounding and connecting to Earth helps us discover, grow, and nourish our roots. Through this, we find our true inner support, the support of finding ourselves and our place in this world and this space. We stand firmly on the Earth, nourished and supported by it, and can safely move forward.
Focusing on Grounding is a chance to get a different viewpoint on our path along the Way of spiritual evolution. A chance to return to the root and the beginning, so as to then continue our ascension with three times as much energy, a strong nervous system, emotional balance, harmony, and Strength.
“Upward” motion is then not a result of needing something from the “heavens,” but of having something to share.
Nina Mel is yoga and energy teacher, RYT 500, creator of N-Code Yoga Practice, Ph.D. in Psychology and author of “The Book of Asanas. Energy Geometry of Human Body. She was featured on the cover of Yoga Journal (May-June 2012 issue, Russian edition), she is also a Shivaloka Soul Jewelry brand ambassador and a founder of yoga apparel line Yogini Bikini.
Nina travels internationally with N-Code Yoga workshops and retreats, runs Yoga Teacher Education Program for teachers of any yoga styles and presents “Energy Geometry of Human Body” courses, but her specialty in yoga is a creation of personally-tailored yoga programs—Individual Codes of Asanas, which is a unique, safe and personalized self-practice experience for those who has no time and possibility to attend yoga studios, travels often or lives abroad.