“Be the silent watcher of your thoughts and behavior.
You are beneath the “thinker.”
You are the stillness beneath the mental noise.
You are the love and joy beneath the pain.”
– Eckhart Tolle
Rituals are powerful. They create a container to hold a singular focus for our mind and body. When dealing with strong feelings or thoughts, this allows us, in the simplest of terms, to feel safe.
What we are wanting to let go of (like grief during mourning) or manifest (like a New Year’s Resolution), is held for a moment in time.
This allows space to step back and observe. For a moment, to not be attached, but to be the “seer.” And, anytime we become aware of the fact that we are not our thoughts or feelings or a situation, there is freedom. Within that freedom, we can process, find clarity, and gain perspective.
Here is a simple writing ritual to reflect on the last year and welcome in the New Year by planting a seed of intention.
You will need: Two pieces of paper, a pen, a pot, matches, Something to put a hot pot on, a glass of water, and a quiet space.
In a quiet place, sit, close your eyes and take a few deep breaths.
Notice where your body moves as you breathe. Let thoughts quietly come and then go, without attaching to them.
Place one hand on your heart and one hand on your belly. Begin to deepen your breath and let it stretch from the very center of you.
Imagine your breath spreading through your belly, ribs, chest, hips, legs, feet, back, shoulders, arms, hands, neck, face, and lifting up and out of the crown of the head.
When you feel ready, open your eyes and write on one sheet of paper:
Let your self write anything that comes to mind. Don’t filter or judge what comes out. Just write. Stream of consciousness.
Write about any challenges, joys, obstacles, people, moments, or situations that you think of.
Take deep breaths and stay relaxed.
Write about anything from the last year that you would like to let go of. Any part of yourself that you wish to be less dominant.
Anything that may be obstructing your heart – Pain, Ego, Anxiety, Pride, Fear, Envy, Gluttony, Anger, Confusion, Resentment, Lust, Jealousy, Slothfulness…
*Write: I release the obstacles that keep me from connecting with my highest self and serving the greatest good.
Breathe in a lot of love as you write.
Stop whenever you are finished.
For a moment, gaze at the sheet of paper. Let your eyes get a little blurry and imagine you can look through your eyes with complete kindness. Pure love.
Now imagine you can step outside of your self and watch what is happening. Notice what your face looks like. How you are sitting. How you are breathing. Observe how you, the true essence of you, is not what you wrote. See and feel how you are beyond your thoughts and feelings.
How, “you are the stillness beneath the mental noise.
You are the love and joy beneath the pain.”
Next, rip up the sheet of paper! Tear it into tiny pieces. Take some cleansing breaths.
Optional: If you would like to move your body a bit, now is a good time to stretch, do some yoga, twist, and shake out tension. Let your body do whatever it wants to do!
Next, burning the obstacles. First, be sure you are in a safe place to make a small fire. Be by an open window or go outside and have your glass of water ready to put out the fire.
Put the ripped up paper in the pot and set it on fire. Take some deep breaths and watch the flame. Then, put out the fire with water, if needed.
Take three cleansing breaths. In through the nose, out of the mouth.
Now, sit and write on your second sheet of paper:
What makes your heart sing?
What parts of yourself do wish to grow and expand?
Awareness, Understanding, Courage, Authenticity, Love, Patience, Humility, Compassion, Joyfulness, Perseverance, Kindness, Being of Service, Integrity, Faith, Peacefulness, Sense of humor, Gratitude, Honesty, Lightness of being….
When you get really still, really honest, what are your Dreams? Hopes? Visions?
Is there a seed of intention you would like to plant for the new year?
*Write: I move freely towards my heart’s desires and I am supported in everyway, shape and form.
When you are finished writing, fold up your paper and place it on your chest (heart center), under your right hand and place your left hand on top of the right. Take some slow, deep breaths. Relax.
Allow a calm to settle over you. Let a small smile come to your lips.
Acknowledge deep within you, that your seed of intention is already beginning to blossom. Imagine every single time you are aware of a breath – you are helping to manifest your heart’s desires.
To close, you can scatter or bury your ashes, repeating:
I release the obstacles that keep me from connecting with my highest self and serving the greatest good.
I move freely towards my heart’s desires and I am supported in everyway, shape and form.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”