From the moment we are born we naturally orientate ourselves to the world in front of us. We tend to have a good connection with our front and while we orientate ourselves to what’s in front of us, towards our face, our appearance, our future we create a separation between front and back. Our ego determines our live and guides us through it.
In tantric philosophy as taught in Anusara yoga, the back body is associated with the Universal while the front body is associated with the individual.
By learning to connect with our back side, to detach from our ego, we can witness a new way of confidence and trust. Experiencing wideness, openness and a strong back that supports us in our lives.
Connect with your back in mediation
In this context, I would like to write about a mediation experience that had quite a big effect on me.
During the last five months, I passed through the Anusara immersion series (by the way an absolutely valuable experience I can totally recommend to everyone who would like to deepen their Yoga practice). One of many highlights was the visit of the amazing Andrea Boni with whom we could spend a whole weekend, discussing not only the Bhagavad Gita, but also talked about mediation, yoga, love, life and many other things. Here is one meditation exercise I found extremely powerful (ideally, you practice this with a group of people.):
At first, sit down in your usual mediation seating position and center yourself. Then, bring your attention to your back. The space behind your heart, your shoulders, your spine… Try to develop a connection to the back side of your body. Almost lean a little backwards to the space behind you.
After a while, open your eyes and get up on your feet. Start walking around while keeping your focus and the connection to your back body. When you get distracted or lose the connection, pause. Hold still and bring your attention to your back again. When you are ready, start walking again.
I was very touched by this experience and the calming and reassuring effect it had on me. It was a feeling of knowing that whatever will come, something has my back (literally and metaphorically). Whatever may come to me or whatever I’m going towards to, I can be assured that I will be supported. Remembering that the universe supports us as individuals, remembering that we are held in support and love. Connecting to this truth, we are able to let the uniqueness of who we are shine out in a way that in return supports the whole.
The best about having experienced this feeling of assurance and trust, you can go back to it when you need it. For example, walking through a busy street, feeling stressed about tasks piling on your desk or feeling anxious about something – whenever you need to, pause and connect with your back and be sure that the universe has your back.
Photo credits: ESO/T. Preibisch