NEWTS #2: Sahaja Yoga Meditation

So I thought I’d ease into it this week and start with a Sahaja Yoga meditation class.


Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi

It was a beautiful summery evening in Manchester and I was already feeling pretty chilled about going. When I arrived, I was kindly welcomed by Peter, the man who was running the class. There were cookies, grape juice and water for everyone on a small table, surrounded by leaflets about the practice. As the room started filling up, it was comforting to find out that I wasn’t the only newbie. I even met a couple of nice girls (fellow newbies) who had also recently graduated from my university. Furthermore, it was great to see the range of people this class attracted; there was a young guy in sports gear, a businessman in a suit and a woman with loads of shopping bags, amongst others. I liked that. The room wasn’t particularly big but it had these massive windows that were open, meaning I could hear the birds chirping, and could look at a beautiful lush-green tree outside. We all sat down on chairs and were told to take our shoes off and sit in a comfy position with our backs straight. I could smell the gentle whiff of cookies from my seat.
Peter started the class by telling us a bit about Sahaja yoga meditation and its pioneer, Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi. I don’t know enough about it to go into a lot of detail, but here’s the gist. He pointed to a diagram, showing us how our energy starts from the bottom of our spine and different levels of our body are associated with different aspects of our character, or even spirit. We have a channel for emotions, and a channel for action. It’s all very spiritual, which was quite refreshing actually, having just finished a rigidly fact-based (obviously) scientific degree. He then invited us to close our eyes and go through some movements, while asking the mother within us all to help with different aspects of our inner balance. He then let us get on with it; the whole room was silent. I felt relaxed. I focused on my breathing and not letting any thoughts in. I don’t know if this was normal, but I also felt quite light-headed. The chair was comfortable, the room was comfortable. If I’m being really honest, I was also tired so I nearly nodded off a couple of times. He also told us to feel on top of our heads with our palms in case we felt any form of energy there coming from the top. I think I did. I felt some sort of difference in my palm when I went over a certain spot. Although the scientist in me believes it’s down to the position of my palm at that point making the bone feel something, like some sort of strain, I am open to a spiritual explanation and am willing to believe it was an imbalance in my inner energy channels. Because that’s probably true.
One thing that hit a sensitive spot for me was when he told us to put our palms on our heads and forgive ourselves by telling ourselves that we are not guilty. He spoke about how some religions may make us feel guilt, but we are not perfect and we should learn to forgive ourselves without thinking about it too much. Having grown up with religious values and struggling with feelings of guilt, I appreciated hearing that.
We carried on like that, alternating between explanations and periods of meditation. I noticed a lit candle in front of a picture of Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi, which was in a gold frame. It reminded me of the shrine my friend’s family had for her father who sadly passed away. I wondered whether Peter had ever met Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi. He seemed like a such a chilled guy, I felt happy for him that he’d found this for himself. It’s crazy how one woman developed this lifestyle that people like him follow religiously. It’s nice to see some good being sent out into the world for a change. We were then shown a video of Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi talking about Sahaja yoga meditation. Again, the scientist in me had to back down and let the more open-minded part of myself take in what she was saying about spiritual imbalances causing illnesses. To be fair, our physiology is closely linked with mental health – she wasn’t wrong in that sense. The session ended with his colleague teaching us about protecting ourselves with some sort of spiritual knot.

Conclusion: I’m really happy I went to this session. Although I don’t see myself becoming a regular right now, it’s good to know it’s there weekly for when I want to go back to it. I definitely feel some potential there. Maybe not in this phase of my life, but I’m not ruling it out for later on.


P.S. If you’re based near Manchester city centre and are interested in this class, I found it on meetup here.


Thoughts on the Daily Prompt: Carefree


Carefree. I like that word. Carefree. The more I think about it though, the more ways I find of interpreting it. Now, I think it’s actually quite a complicated word.

So I google-defined it. “Carefreeadjective. Free from anxiety or responsibility, e.g. ‘we were young and carefree’.”

Well that word couldn’t be any more relevant to my life right now. For the past two years my sole wish was to be carefree. I was in my final two years of a stressful degree and I wished nothing more than for it to be over, and that I didn’t have to constantly stress over all these assignments that I couldn’t seem to do well in. Two years of constant stress inevitably took its toll and now I’ve been a graduate for just over a week and surprise, surprise – still not carefree. Instead, I’m left with this anxiety and feeling of responsibility that I can’t seem to shake off. ‘We were young and carefree’. I’m always hearing that association. Well I’m young, but I feel a bit lost. ‘Carefree’ just doesn’t seem to want to find me.

Let’s rewind a bit. When I first read that word on the Daily Prompt, I was drawn to it. My immediate interpretation of the word was a powerful visual one. The image just popped into my head (almost in a carefree way). It was me, with my arms spread out like wings, almost flying off a cliff side, jumping into a beautiful sea. It was sunny, I was happy, feeling light and.. you guessed it – carefree. So in that sense, carefree, to me, is almost synonymous with being fearless.

Then, I looked at it differently. Carefree = not caring. I remember a time when I didn’t care. But I wasn’t happy. It was the bad, numb kind of not caring. There we go, carefree can’t be all that good then. Caring is important. Caring is a form of love. A life of apathy is, in my opinion, the worst there could be.

So, as with anything, there has to be a compromise. I’ve definitely grown out of my whole ‘black and white’ view of the world. It’s all just different shades of grey (not a reference to 50 shades – never touched that book). No one wants anxiety, but everyone wants some form of responsibility – to feel needed, a purpose. This is probably why multi-millionaires are always constantly working to be bigger and better. No one wants to be totally carefree. We all like a bit of stress (not too much), a bit of excitement, something to work towards. Then we want a couple of weeks of holiday a year where we can act carefree, but then we can go back and resume our ‘care-full’ life.

Just a thought…



First Post: Try Something New Every Week #1

Hiya (to whoever is actually reading this),

So I have no idea how this works and if this will be any good but I’m willing to give it a try. I’m starting a blog to encourage myself (and others!) to try something new every week ! I literally graduated from uni last week and am already bored/unmotivated/lost. I am in need of a project and was inspired by the thought of a blog 😀 (Youtube was considered but quickly rejected due to the thought of repeatedly watching myself on video while editing, plus I love typing on a keyboard !).

So the aim of the blog is to post weekly about the new thing attempted that week. I haven’t planned what types of things I will be trying, but I hope they can tell me more about the kinds of things I like/don’t like, and even inspire others to leave their comfort zones a bit more ! I also haven’t decided whether I’ll do random side posts about random things on my mind – I just want to have a bit of fun with blogging and experiment.

Sidenote: I’m not really sure what to call this blog yet – TSNEW doesn’t really have a nice ring to it… but I like NEWTS (reminds me of beloved Hazza P). So today was NEWTS #1: Starting a Blog


P.S. I swear I’m not ‘mega mean’ – it’s a long story.

P.P.S. Here’s a picture of Teriyaki, my hamster. He was my TSN (‘Try Something New’) a couple of months ago. (I want to add at least one picture to each blog).