Hello dear ones!
I’ve been asked if I could do a daily Advent series for DoxaSoma, something you could follow as we move toward Christmas.
I think this is a great thought and I’m glad to put this together for anyone who’d like to follow along over the next 20ish or so days.
According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, “Advent is a period beginning with the Sunday nearest to the feast of St. Andrew the Apostle (30 November) and embracing four Sundays.” This means that our Advent season began on Sunday December 1st. We will start this week’s worth of movements and reflections today then with 2 positions:
Prayer and Prayer Breathing
The two positions work together of course, during our practice we most often dovetail from one to the other. Prayer is how we begin and it is how we end. The movement of Prayer breathing is representative of our “circular breathing.” In this way we remind ourselves to inhale as deeply as we exhale, to calm our disquieted spirits, to relish moments of reflection. Prayer Breathing reminds us, too, that as with all things we move according to a season, according to a cycle.
For Prayer position, press palms together, feeling the contact near the wrists, the sides of your hands, the fingertips.
As you move into Prayer Breathing inhale as you bring hands from your heart,to your lips, to your forehead, and up to praise as you exhale, circling the arms around until find yourself back at Prayer and back at the heart. Lift at the heart and then begin your cycle of breathing again. Do this several times.
Begin this week considering what is beginning in this season even as you consider what you are leaving behind. Consider what you are moving toward this Advent season, this time of waiting in hope. What roots you in this season of Advent? Is it a word? An image? A song?
Choose something this week to use as an anchoring for your practice this month. Choose something so that no matter where you are or how overwhelmed you may feel you can connect to this feeling of focus, this waiting in hope. Choose something that reminds you, like pressing your palms together in Prayer Breathing reminds you that you are more than ribbons and gift buying and cookie baking and tree decorating and travel.
As you breathe through this week, be mindful of the verse that accompanies this position. Breathe the words and know that they are for you. Find yourself in this place, rooted here:
“In His hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.” Job 12:10