Have you ever noticed that once you start meditating or doing yoga that after a few weeks, or days even, a complete shift? Not just the peace, but also the intense of emotion, and occasionally the intense unexplainable movement towards a very angry or depressed energy. Now this is nothing to be averted to, nor ignored; but the reservoirs of energy that have been kept and surprised deep down in the chakras that started and festered when something happened to us that was too painful or stressful to deal with.
This is not a new idea, it was given to me from a book “Chakra Therapy For Personal Growth and Healing” by Keith Sherwood. She talks about these reservoirs in our energy centers, that block the free flow of the Kundalini. Sherwood says that these reservoirs are created out of all kinds of emotion, anything that was too intense when it happened for us to handle it, including anger, depression, fear, happiness, sexual arousal, etc. as you can image there are a lot of emotions that we have experienced in our lives. Many times when we are children, were not always equipped to handle many of these emotions fully, even the yummy ones like bliss. Ever heard the quote from JM Berrie’s Peter Pan? “Tink was not all bad: or, rather, she was all bad just now, but, on the other hand, sometimes she was all good. Fairies have to be one thing or the other, because being so small they unfortunately have room for one feeling only at a time. They are, however, allowed to change, only it must be a complete change.” This is much like ourselves as small children, we can not always process the emotions that we are feeling, or sometimes are taught too young to ‘behave’ and hold our emotions in. All of these things can cause energy reservoirs, and often times is a combination of them.
Heres the tricky part, when we begin to open these centers up these emotions are released; the good and the not so fun ones. For many of us down spiritual paths, we are no longer children and many times its not just the itch for the Divine that sets us down our paths. Many people down the path of Truth seeking, are older and have a lot of energy reservoirs built up, and more are coming out of some dark place that stirred the need for something more in them-which only adds to the emotion. So as we start to open the chakras, and move that sweet energy, there is a chance that we will awake and open one of these reservoirs. These openings cause a number of side-effects including, but not limited to, reliving painful memories, pain, anger, fear, and a well of other emotions, lashing out at loved ones, edginess, and well you get the idea. Essentially we embody everything but a ‘All You Need Is Love’ kind of an yogi person. What is worse, many people ignore it, try to keep it inside, or are every form of confused about what is going on.
Here are a few things I recommend when something like this happens along your spiritual path, and nowhere do I think it is a good idea to ignore or hide emotions, no matter which ones.
1. Let the emotions flow threw you. Emotions are just like any other energy. Letting energy flow is one thing that we are learning in yoga, to restrict the energy or try and
control it, is the opposite of what you want to learn how to do.
2. Understand the root of the emotion. Start small, what exactly is setting you off these days? Is it a small pet peeve or something greater? Find what your emotion is attached to and recognize you are in control of your reactions and emotions. Do not give up the power to the emotion, if after you look and find what is setting you off and still feel angry or sad, express it, just recognize.
3. Think back to what this incident is connected to. The thing to remember is that everything that comes out of energy reservoirs is connected to something in our past, if it is manifesting in this way then there is something that you can not just breeze over in your practice. Somethings in our past we have to face head on, and many of the biggies will manifest in engrained behavior. For example, my family use to go to the UP of Michigan when I was younger almost every summer. My mother is deadly fearful of the Mackinaw bridge that connects lower Michigan and Upper Michigan. So every summer when we crossed it she would vocalize her fear-not that there is anything wrong with that, nor was it unfounded that bridge is scary! Still many years later I was driving myself across a very long and high bridge; and I was freaking out. Where did this sudden fear come from? I learned it from those vacations. Once I recognized this I decided to be in control of my fear, and now when I get fearful on bridges I chant, pray, or sing as loud as I can and my fear melts away.
4. Finally, give yourself some time to deal with the uncovered emotion. Do not expect it to go away on its own, nor try and breeze over it. Meditate on it, journal about it, do what ever it is you need to do-except suppress it again-and work threw your past. Usually I will do a number of things, and allow myself as much time as I need to get threw something. If allowable, I will spend a day alone, cut off from the world, in silence. I will turn off my phone, computer, and any other way of communication and sound, sit and just breath. I will add a few more mala sets, more breathing excursuses, more asana, and some times alone, then in my normal every day. Not always is it a good idea to talk everything out and when dealing with something deep ceded in your past I usually recommend dealing with it alone, but a good ear is always nice too. Just remember do not dwell. Letting go is not the same as dwelling, once you feel the engrained behavior slipping away, you will become more comfortable. Do not force your self to remember everything that is painful when you are seeming to let go of it.
In the end, yoga is there to help us grow and let go. Somethings are just bigger than we had bargained for, hence why we suppressed them in the first place. When they manifest, it’s not always pretty and often times very hard and time consuming to recover from; but it is doable! So the next time, or the first time, you find yourself randomly creating negative energy for no reason, breath and connect to your past, find out what is causing this emotion, and heal.