Heart Flower, A Nature Meditation
In meeting a crisis such as the current pandemic, having tools of self-regulation are helpful in creating opportunities to settle and soothe one’s nervous system. Self-regulation is about reminding the autonomic nervous system of its natural rhythm between activation / moving forward and resource/ rest. Staying grounded in one’s bodily experience, and slowing it down, invites space for new awareness and information to be woven in.
Engaging through the senses helps to bring us into the present moment and helps us to know where we are. So, one way to create a space of easeful self-awareness is to focus your attention through sensation; what are you seeing, hearing, smelling, touching, perceiving in your immediate environment?
Inviting a moment of pausing, I offer a contemplative sensory awareness exploration inspired by this month’s “Flower Moon.”
If you are able, go outside and find a flower that calls you. Look for space to linger relatively comfortably with this flower for a while. You can also work with an indoor flower (or with a photo or painting of a flower).
Gently begin to explore the details, textures, and colour variations of this flower with kindness. Each person, like each flower, is unique – find your own way to respectfully meet this flower. Use all your senses.
As each observation, each awareness, arises, notice how that touches you. What sensations are present? How or where do you sense some element of those textures, shapes, impressions, and/or emotions in yourself. For example, how do you sense (perhaps) qualities of velvet, softness, curving, brightness, delicacy and more…
Let yourself gaze at the flower freshly. Consider the possibility that this flower is somehow gazing or perceiving you.
Pause with receptive, open attention; noticing what sensations are alive for you right now.
When you have allowed some time to soak in the richness of meditating with this flower, I invite you to imagine yourself as a flower, with your heart perhaps as the centre of the blossom and the petals blooming outward.
With your awareness, trace an arcing path from your heart centre outward, around a petal, curving back to your heart. Like a figure 8 (or an infinity symbol), trace a complimentary petal with your awareness. Find the pathway that makes sense for you. You might be quite still or gently sway as you continue to explore this flowering of your heart – outward and inward, a movement of ebb and flow, giving and receiving.
Continue as long as is enjoyable, exploring multiple dimensions of the blossoming petals of your heart. Rest in open attention; noticing what sensations are alive for you right now.
Be nourished by your kind attention, resting in your “heart flower.”
Being in nature is a time-honoured tradition of relational self-care. Perhaps, like the poet Saigyõ Hõshi, you can find a spacious ease though this short pause of attending to the natural world around you – and within yourself.
Since my mind fixed on the moon
Clarity and serenity make something for which
There’s no end in sight
About Amy Kiara Ruth, BSc (Kin, Ed)
A life-long interest in movement led Amy to become a kinesiologist and somatic movement educator. She draws upon her extensive movement experience and training in kinesiology, dance, Taiji/Qigong, the Pilates method, Self-Regulation Therapy, and Continuum & Continuum Montage. She brings a grounded presence and a spirit of collaborative inquiry to her work.
Her individual sessions, classes, and workshops offer participants opportunities to develop increased possibility for movement, to cultivate attunement with their own somatic intelligence, and to reconnect to their full range of embodied expression.
She embraces the perspective that nature is our true nature and that dance, movement, and art are essential wasy to experience and express this interconnectedness. As a forth/fifth generation settler to Turtle Island, she is grateful to live on this unceded land.
If you loved this meditation, check out her article, “Exploring Fluid Body Movement” too.
Visit Amy’s website here.