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As we move into 2018 we will be working through each of the seven primary chakras through the first seven months of the year and then transition into the five koshas (layers of our being) for the last five months.
We start at the beginning with the first chakra, muladhara, and the theme of rooting in order to rise.  If you’ve been practicing yoga for a while it is likely that you’ve heard your teacher say this, “root to rise.”  What does it really mean?  Basically it is asking us to establish a firm foundation so we may rise above it or build upon it.  If our house is built on quick sand it wont last very long.  The same with our lives.  We have to be willing to slow down enough to see what our foundation has been built of.  What was your childhood like?  Did you take on traits of your parents that don’t serve you?  Are you ready to clear out the old and establish something even better?
Rooting down is a sense of growing roots.  These roots are a basic foundation for you to grow from, to receive nourishment from and create stability in your life.   Our pose this month, Bridge, helps us to see this.  If your pose is set upon feet that are too wide or too narrow or not grounded through the four corners then your Bridge pose won’t last long.  You’ll feel weak or unstable, the breath will be labored, and in the end you won’t be able to make the connections you want.
Living life without roots, without a stable base, is not fulfilling.  It is empty even if we pretend it is full and everything is ok.  January is a month that we can turn from the holidays and rush into a new year.  I ask that you don’t do that.  Slow down, look within, see what you want out of this year and take the time to establish your roots.  Be willing to see the things in your life that are working for you and those that are not.  You are worthy of a great life.  You are worth the time, effort and slowing down to nurture yourself and clear out the old to make room for the greatness of you!
Set yourself free to be the best version of you in 2018!
Mindy Arbuckle
Founder of Maitri Yoga