Kind of Urban Art Girl with squirrel in the sunset between black and orange color

The Importance of Ritual

Dinacharya – comes from Ayurvedic principles which teach the importance of daily rituals to help support body, mind, and spirit.

 

Many of the Ayurvedic practices for this would include oil pulling and tongue scraping. Whilst I am not adverse to any or all of the ones traditionally proposed, I do believe we can adapt the idea to suit ourselves and lifestyles a little better.

 

My focus here is on the ritual aspect – things we can do at the beginning of the day to really set us up in the best way possible. These are by no means foolproof in that they will guarantee you won’t run into life’s hurdles along the way. But, they do give us something which ensures we’ve tried our best to create the right conditions.

 

My day starts at 6.25am. This is my personal choice. I could stay in bed longer and there are days I wish I had made that choice! By the time I’ve swung into action, it gives me about 20-30 minutes of quiet and focus before I set the rest of the household into action.

 

The following is my ritual / routine which may inspire you to follow or to create your own.

 

#1 Set Your Intention

 

Upon waking, simply sit on the side of the bed and take a maximum of 3 minutes to consider your intention for the day ahead. It can be as simple as, ‘May I greet everyone with a smile’. Whatever you choose, ensure that it sits comfortably.

 

#2 Cleanse

 

Consider the needs of your body and the A.M.A.Z.I.N.G job it does for us – continuously. A quick and easy go-to is hot water with lemon.  Here are just a few of the many benefits that can be derived from this simple morning ritual:

 

  • Is an aid to digestion and the production of bile
  • Flushes out toxins from the body
  • Lemons contain potassium which is a boost from brain and nerve cells
  • An excellent source of vitamin C
  • Beneficial to the skin

 

#3 Morning Pages

 

I got this idea 2 years ago after reading Julia Cameron’s book , ‘The Prosperous Heart: Creating a Life of Enough’.

The process is to write 3 sides of paper without any censorship or judgement. Write whatever comes into your head. It doesn’t have to be neat handwriting (oh, forgot to mention, it is to be written by hand, not on your laptop or tablet). It doesn’t have to even be complete and proper sentences. Just write whatever is there.

 

What you choose to do with the results is entirely up to you. I always shred them a day or two later (another kind of ritual as it’s about releasing and letting go of the content).

 

Try it. It may seem like hard work, but it can be such a wonderful way of creating clarity before you move into the busy-ness of the day.

 

This can be done whilst enjoying #2

 

#4 Meditate

 

Simply sitting with the sensations of the body for up to 10 minutes.

 

If I have decided against the hot water and lemon, then mindfully drinking my first cup of tea of the day can be the focus of my sitting practice.

 

Should you need more guidance, then there are many, many meditations that can be downloaded which will inspire and motivate.

 

I alternate some days with #3 and #4 if time is a little tight, so I pick one rather than do both.

 

#5 Choose an Oracle Card

 

Many of us are inspired by the random nature of choosing a card from a deck that appeals to us, either because of the artwork or the theme it carries. Choosing a card, reading the definition and then sitting for a few moments to contemplate what it suggests.

 

So there you have it. As I said before, I usually only have between 20 – 30 minutes. You can create your own ritual that demands less time, or more if you have the luxury of being able to and don’t mind early starts.

 

Intention forms a strong basis of a regular meditation practice. This is a structure I teach on regularly in my monthly meditation sessions in Watford on Saturday mornings. Check the website for more details

Esprit Yoga

Passionate about teaching yoga and meditation and their many therapeutic and remedial uses, has been a way of life for Esprit Yoga for more than 25 years. Further details on classes & workshops can be found at: http://www.claire-murphy.com