From my tan tien to yours

Relationships are fascinating associations, aren’t they? Every moment, we are defining and redefining relationships. What is it that binds us to people, things, events, or even births? Is there a connection to a past life relationship or are we continuously making new associations? Why is it that at times we feel a sense of familiarity and comfort with particular people? Why do we feel that some people are better to be avoided?

The universe functions cyclically. And every component of the universe also functions cyclically.
- Take the earth, for example. It rotates and revolves, and reaches its source point in a given span of time.
- Seasons too follow the same pattern.
- Life also, begins from energy and goes back to energy; again, a cyclical pattern.
- We feel hungry, eat food, excrete and again feel hungry, thereby reaching a full circle in our daily lifestyle.
- Plants grow from seeds and develop seeds in turn.
- Relationships too are cyclical. It is customary for Hindus especially, to name the grandchild after the grandparent, so that the family cycle is maintained.
- Spiritually speaking also, many religions believe that we continue from where we left off in the previous birth - the law of Karma. Again, a cycle of birth and rebirth.
What determines this bonding? What are the energy changes that take place when for instance, two lovers meet? Or when you meet a long-lost pal. How does that surge of emotion come by?
Talking of human relationships, a bonding is "energetically" described as a band of energy that connects two people at the tan tien, which is an energy centre near the navel. We are at a time, connected to so many different things. It is said that for each association we have a band of energy from our tan tien centre to that particular object or person.
We may use words like "I have cut off the relationship", but in real terms, no relation is ever cut off. There is always a slender connection that is always maintained, which manifests itself either in this birth or in future births. As it has been said, "If we were to form new associations and relations all the time, there would be no place in the heavens".

Doodle to get answers

Do you have the habit of scribbling or drawing something on paper when deep in thought? The scribbles could be anything: straight lines, jagged lines, lines as in a graph, a house, flower, bird, humans, odd shapes...They may be just scribbles, but they actually represent our mental state at that point of time. Doodling, as the art is called, is a symbolic way of projecting our innermost thoughts.
Much of our creative expressions find their source in our subconscious. It is here that we drown our worries and also, where we find our solutions. When we are desperately looking for an answer to a question, what do we do? We rummage the subconscious, don't we?

Doodling is one way of doing this. Doodling helps us to unleash the hidden powers of our subconscious mind. It allows our intuitive feelings to express themselves in pictorial symbolic form. A symbol conveys an entire thought in one image. It has universal as well as personal meaning. Interpreting these symbols can help to unveil meanings that are not apparent to our linear mind. To practice the art of doodling, do the following:

Focus on something that you are attempting to create or resolve. Hold the initial idea or desire in the mind and allow yourself to go into a blank stare or soft focus, preferably against a neutral background (sky or a white wall). As ideas and feelings come to the mind, simply doodle them onto a piece of clean white paper.

You could also allow yourself to focus exclusively on an idea and discuss it with a friend, and while discussing it, doodle on a piece of clean white paper. Continue to doodle as you talk and listen. Don't interpret or inhibit what you are drawing.

When doodling just allow your hands to follow your impulse. It's best if you can go into a mild trance and disengage the conscious mind. In some disciplines, this is called automatic writing. The difference is that automatic writing tends to focus on words in sequence. In doodling, we simply want to the engage the subconscious mind in an imaginary way and record the images that are brought to the surface.

When you have finished doodling, set the paper aside for a period of time. When your mind is fresh, look at what you've drawn. You will begin to get feelings or ideas. You may even see actual structures in the doodles. You may have unconsciously drawn the solution to your problem in those structures.Doodling can also include numbers.

In ancient traditions, numbers were considered to be powerful creative symbols and the primal organising principle that gives structure to the universe. After all, numerology is based on this fundamental principle.No one can interpret our doodling except ourselves. Your subconscious mind is attempting to contact you all the time. It is usually blocked by habitual conscious thought patterns or emotions. Learn to allow it conscious expression, preferably every day. It's a wonderful experience.

Thank God I experience pain!

Ooh! Aaah! Ouch! That friendly neighbourhood pain balm may have epitomised pain with these three expressions, but we all know that pain manifests itself in a myriad ways - physical, mental, emotional and also spiritual. And we are more than familiar with the first three varieties, isn't it?
We relate to pain in different ways, but largely, it's an emotional distress - a fundamental feeling that people try to avoid. Of course, pain is horrible to bear. Thanks to painkillers that we pop in with alacrity, we happen to 'manage' pain. In fact, pain management forms an important part of medicine. But the question is: do we really need to 'manage' pain or 'understand' why it is there in the first place.

Is pain that bad? Why do we get pain anyways? Is there something to learn from it? For instance, take this situation. You are banging a nail into the wall and you accidentally happen to slam the hammer on your finger. Thanks to the shooting pain that you get, you immediately withdraw your finger and rush to give it first aid. If you hadn't got that pain, you probably would go on banging your finger to pulp and would never know about it till there was no finger left! So, in this case, the pain was actually a blessing.

Pain is your body's way of telling you 'Hey, something is wrong inside, I need your attention here'. It is an emotion experienced in the brain: it is not like touch, taste, sight, smell or hearing. It can be perceived as a warning of potential damage, but can also be present when no actual harm is being done to the body. Remember, the only way that your body can get your attention is by causing pain. Ordinarily, would you remember your little toenail during your daily course of events? No, isn't it? So, the only way your little toenail can get your attention is by causing pain. Therefore, be grateful that you get pain because that is your body's communication mechanism.
When we get pain, instead of asking our body what's wrong, we run all over the place - to doctors, hospitals, friends, etc. - for the solution. The reality is that the solution lies in your body itself. The next time you get pain, try this out: Close your eyes, and address that pain. Speak to it. Speak to the affected organ and ask it why the pain is there. You will get an answer. Remember, this is an intuitive process, so be in a receptive state of mind. Our body is far superior to even a super computer. If there is a discomfort in it, it has the ability to tell you about it. We just need to understand its language.

Words have power

Words have power - power to create energy blocks in your life and also to dissolve them. If we just observe the way most of us speak, our choice of words, our sentence construction, we will realise how much this simple act contributes towards creating stress for ourselves.
In this context, the Hindi phrase "Shubh shubh bolo" (speak positive) makes a lot of sense. If we were to just change our vocabulary a bit, substitute positive words for the negative ones and make it a point to use these positive words on a continuous basis, much of our problems and negative patterns that we have created for ourselves, will disappear.
For instance, take the sentence "I hate him". Here, the word 'hate' is so strong that it immediately creates a strong barrier in your relationship with him leaving little scope for any improvement. It does not help you or your cause in any way. It just creates acids in your stomach when you say it. It causes an energy imbalance, resulting in stress.
Suppose you substitute the words 'I hate' with the words 'I prefer', it not only retains the positive tenor in your emotion, it also does not create energy blocks.
So instead of saying "I hate him", you could say "I prefer not to deal with him".
So it is very important to choose the right words while speaking. If you were to practice substituting "positive" words for the various negative ones you may be uttering, it will add a sparkle to your life. Overbearing problems will cease to appear as problems.
These words are coined from the neuro-linguistic programme (NLP). The next time you feel a bit under the weather, shrug off despair by shifting vocabulary. Here are some changes you can make. The 'better' word is in brackets.
Afraid (Uncomfortable); Confused (Curious); Exhausted (Re-charging); Failure (Learning); Hurt (Bothered); Insulted (Misunderstood); Jealous (Over-loving); Lazy (Storing energy); Lost (Searching); Sad (Sorting out thoughts); Stressed (Energised); Problem (Opportunity); Terrible (Different).
Try to jot down your most frequently used words and phrases. Analyse them to see the effect they have on you. Consciously change those words and make it a point to use these positive words in your future interactions and utterances. There's bound to be a difference.So what do you do when you feel afraid, hurt or confused? Simple, just feel uncomfortable, bothered or curious!

Where does this 'but' come from?

We know words have power. Do we know which words increase power and which don't? Often, we use words randomly, without thinking about the effect they have on our subconscious, oblivious of the messages they send to our brain. 'But' is one such word and it is very powerful. Whenever we use the word 'but' in a sentence, whatever has been said before gets nullified.

"Mansi looks beautiful, but she has a long nose." In this sentence, what are we trying to say? Is Mansi beautiful or not? Your subconscious gets the message "Mansi is not beautiful because she has a long nose." And it also stores this view that all people with long noses are not beautiful, which need not be true actually. Let's take another one - "I don't mean to criticise you Manoj, but..." There, we already have started to criticise Manoj, isn't it?
Your subconscious is like a sponge. It absorbs every image, message and direction that it is provided with. And it instructs your body to function accordingly. You can therefore, make or destroy your future with the words you choose to utter. 'But' is one such word: it can undo many good things that you may have chosen to do. And you may be left wondering why your dreams are not coming true.
So choose your words with care. Instead of 'but', try using the word 'and'. With 'and', you can avoid setting up a problem situation in the first place. In addition, it might be useful to eliminate judgemental phrases completely.
It would be worthwhile to change your inner dialogue for the better. Start off by acknowledging it - often we are unaware of the amount of mental chatter and if it is positive or negative. The second step is to record the amount of negative inner dialogue is occurring. Do not judge it, just let it be and become more aware of your inner voice. And the third step is to rephrase your inner dialogue.
This will bring positivity of thought, speech and action in you, and will enable you to change the energy patterns in you and around you for the better.

The energy exchange's just right

"Anything given free has no value". "There is nothing called a free lunch".Do these sentences sound familiar? Have you ever felt "uncomfortable" when someone heaps favours on you, and felt restless to "return the favours" in some manner? Why do we feel this way?

For instance, take the case of you attending a wedding, in which the wedding card clearly says: 'No presents please'. Have you felt awkward to go for the wedding, dine there and return without presenting the bride/groom with anything? What many people do is to take a present, "just in case" the marriage party is ready to accept it. Or take a bouquet or something that pacifies this "guilt" feeling.
The answers to this emotion lie in the concept of 'energy exchange' that takes place or should take place all the time. This column has constantly stressed upon the various principles upon which cosmic energy functions. The universe is completely based on energy, in various forms, being exchanged in various ways. It is the natural flow of things.
For example, when you buy a product, you pay the shopkeeper money in return. You do that because you are getting energy in the form of the product that you have bought, and you are giving off energy which both you and the shopkeeper feel is equivalent to the energy that you have received. Pooh, complicated uh
The concept can be simplified thus. Everything in this world is a form of energy. Solid objects, thoughts, speech, sight, action ...absolutely anything. We all - animate and inanimate, living and non-living - function as a part of that cosmic energy. Since the universe functions in a state of balance, when you receive energy in any form, you need to give off energy also. What that means is when you take something, you need to give away something equivalent to what you have taken.
In the earlier days, the barter system prevailed. If Ramlal gave a sackful of rice to Shyamlal, he accepted, probably, a sackful of wheat in return. What's important is both parties agree that the deal is fair, that both receive an equivalent amount in return for what they have given.
As time passed by, barter gave way to the current monetary system since the latter was considered more "convenient".When this exchange does not take place, words like debt, favour, obligation, arise. "I have done so much for him, this is what he gives me in return" - feelings such as these take root. As a result, there is negativity... or to put it correctly, there is energy imbalance.
All our problematic situations arises out of energy imbalance - bad health, family feuds, natural disasters, depression, et al. Everyday we continuously take and do favours on people. In this process, there is a continuous give and take of energy. And it's not possible to keep track of this give and take.
The best way to balance this energy exchange, therefore, is to consciously and voluntarily "give away" some of the energy we have received in the form of money, time, happiness, possessions, etc. Charity, paying compliments, hugs, unconditional loving, gifting, social service, donations, etc. are methods of correcting this imbalance. That would go a long way in correcting the energy imbalance within ourselves, and thereby the world.