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Archive of ‘Mantra’ category

Dancing with My Sadness

One of those mornings. I wake up several times at night. A web of dreams. Woke up with my left side, from my neck to the inner left shoulder blade, tight and stuck with a searing pain. As I move, tears follow. This is different, this isn’t just a ‘I slept on a wrong angle’ kind of pain, this is ‘listen to me I’m trying to tell you something’ kind of pain.

So I listen. I lie down with my crystals on my chakras. I invite light to shine into my energy vortices one by one. The sadness shape-shifts, this isn’t something new, this is my old friend of feeling helpless and trapped. I see myself as a teenager, so full of passion, and so angry at being said no to and not having any control over my time and choices. The good thing is I am not a teenager any more, the challenging thing is this feeling is between me and my arriving to this moment fully. So the inquiry continues, right in my belly I see my cells desperately wanting to control everything. So exhausting. What if they can let all that go. So I ask, and they let the light in. A sigh of relief, my body melts. I continue to scan my body chakra by chakra, letting the energy of the crystals in, and believing that I can let go of this illusion of control, and so it is. My eased body joins my family to have some breakfast.

As I go about having breakfast, making tea and chatting with my daughter and husband, the sadness returns. Like a lost puppy, it is still trying to teach me something. The real work is right here, right at my breakfast table. It is knowing that no one did this to me, no one is to blame, it is a pattern, a condition, a conditioning, coming by to say hi. And I have no right to lash out to my child or husband or myself or anyone in my life. But I do have a responsibility to tend to this searing pain, this aching sadness.

I go back to solitude to be with it, and this time to dance with it. I choose a soothing rhythmic song. I start to move slowly, with no words, with a lot of tenderness and gentleness. I can clearly feel the start and the end of my pain, all the tightness, and with my inquiry I know that some of my deepest fears are behind it: feeling helpless, not being able to do anything I want and need to do, and losing my connection to the flow of life. My movements progress. I am not trying to understand anything. I am simply being there for this expression of life. I move, my pain moves, sometimes expanding, sometimes softening. Soon, my inner voice adds a mantra to my dance ‘Om Shanti Om’. My movements get bigger and stronger.

Suddenly I am reminded that I don’t have to carry it all by myself. I can rely on the vibration of ‘Om Shanti Om’ chanted by millions of others through millenia, I can rely on my ancestors, the invisible helpers in my DNA, and ask them to carry this fear with me, I can ask the light in the universe to give me a helping hand. My movements are not mine any more, the life and light are dancing me. I move and I am lifted at the same time.

And something magical happens: no more pain. My neck is free, my muscles no longer aching. I dance with a newly found connection to life and joy. Still chanting, releasing and allowing life to move in me, through me, with me. I hold my heart, my movements slow down, I truly feel the vibration that is carrying me through it: ‘Om Shanti Om’. I offer it all to the light, vibration, and the unique expression of life that we all are.

The strong neck and shoulder pain I woke up with disappears in the face of an honest inquiry with the help of crystals, mantra and dance. When you show up with the intention of a fully engaged presence, and a loving willingness to be with what is, and use the tools available to you, your feelings, sensations and pain open up to you and share their secrets with you. You open up to the possibility of ease, joy, freedom and lightness.

Sign up for Chakra Bliss Group Healing to show up for what needs to be listened to.
Sign up for Mantra Dance to show up for what needs to be danced with.
All dates and sign up info are here

With love and light,

Damla

Embodying My Truth

There’s something that has been brewing in my body and psyche, and it is time to share it and embody my truth.

I am called to explore the inner landscape of my body in a new and exciting way.

I am called to leave behind the safe confines of a yoga mat, structured movement, safety cues, and robotic repetitions.

I am called to move my joints, muscles, and fascia in every direction that I can.

I am called to follow the music of my soul and be everything that I am, that we are.

I am called to reach beyond my seeming limitations to embody joy, love, light; pain, suffering, getting lost; and everything in between and beyond.

I am called to risk looking and being silly if it means exposing my soul fully.

I am called to dance.

I am called to chant.

I am called to Mantra Dance.

This is an open invitation. I am looking for light makers to dance with me.

Click here to meet your body and soul in a whole new way.

With love and light,

Damla

P.S. If you don’t live in the Seacoast NH area, please bear with me, I will reveal more opportunities to connect, embody and grow together in the months to come.

What You Need Is Right Here

mantra postThe knowledge, know-how, support, love, care, health, bliss, creativity, wisdom or anything else you need is right HERE. Just like downloading and installing a new software into your laptop, you can download anything you need into yourself to accomplish what you want or need to do.

There are various ways of doing this. Some call it accessing your past-lives and calling forth talents and energies you already know how to be with or use. Some say it is a gift from our ancestors who are living in our cells. All their wisdom and knowledge is already stored within. There is a theory about Morphogenetic Fields by Dr. Rupert Sheldrake. It basically says that all we learn as a species is stored in an energy field that everyone can access anytime. If someone learns a new way of playing the piano in Finland, somebody else in Australia can access this knowledge and learn it faster. Dr. Carl Yung talked about the Collective Unconscious, which is a similar idea, saying that we share instincts and archetypes in a field that is specific to our species.

Then there are specific formulas for attracting, unearthing or bringing about new energies, talents, shifts of consciousness in you and others, aka MANTRAS. They are created to represent and access an energy pattern in the universe and bring it into your life.

You may wonder how exactly? Here are a few examples:

  • A health mantra to awaken the healer within, activate the wisdom of your cells and help you intuit new ways of healing
  • An abundance mantra to attract wealth and new ways of gaining abundance (including hidden talents) into your life
  • A creativity mantra to gather sparks of energy and turn them into ideas
  • An anger mantra to make friends with your anger and let it shift into an ally
  • A consciousness mantra to awaken the inner pathways of your energy system, and help you access the places of wisdom that live in your body

The time that the mantras create visible physical and emotional results varies.

  • Sometimes it takes time to find the right software for you
  • Sometimes it is necessary to take care of the hardware first (think a juice cleanse, retreat or a vacation)
  • Sometimes it takes a longer time to install the software into your system (like a super slow download due to hardware (aka karma) issues, which may ask for more mantra repetitions over a longer period of time)

I know this: mantra works and it can create tiny to major wonders and miracles in your life if you stick with it.

Mantra does not mean that you won’t take action. Through your mantra practice, you will get in touch with your intention and the energy that mantra represents with the help of the daily repetition and open yourself to signs, synchronicities, solutions that you have not thought of before, opportunities of growth, and letting go. You can then use all of what you find through your practice to take small or big steps EVERY SINGLE DAY. Mantra creates focused and intent-filled action that will get to where you want to go fast and in surprising ways.

I created the 40 Days of Shanti Free Mantra Challenge to give you a taste of the wonderfully simple, easy to learn and potent mantra practice. In 40 days, I walk you through a practice of the classical mantra ‘Om Shanti Om’ to open new pathways of peace in your life in whatever area or aspect you need it most. You can sign up at this link and start enjoying the magic of downloading peace into your life.

I am hosting a day-long Mantra Immersion in Istanbul, Turkey. This is a completely revamped and upgraded version of my previous workshop based on practice and experience. If you live in Turkey and have taken this workshop with me, take it again. If you haven’t, this is your chance to learn to tap into the energies of the universe and install what you need.

With love and light,

Damla

108 Thank You’s

108 Thank You's

Let’s face it. Life is not easy. This physical reality -occasionally- sucks. There are moments that you may not want to be in. Ones that you rather change, push away, and some that you’d rather forget. As adults who are seeking balance (not even enlightenment, just some balance!), the challenge is making friends with your reality: the body, the job, the self-care, child-care, parent-care, pet-care, home-care situation that you find yourself in RIGHT NOW.

I will teach you a tool that I often use when I want to change my relationship with my reality: 108 Thank You’s. It is a powerful, quick, and magical way to appreciate all the choices that brought you here without judgement, force, or effort.

  • All you need is you, your mala (yogic rosary with 108 beads) and a quiet place that you can be alone. If you don’t have a mala, just set your timer to 10 minutes. You will most likely do about 100 repetitions within that time.
  • You will count the beads and name something or someone you are thankful for with each count. Here is the key: the more you can name your shadows and send them gratitude, the better.
  • It is usually easier to start with things that you love: a thing, a person, a place, an event, an emotion, a body part, a loved one who passed away, etc.
  • Then move onto your shadows: the body parts that are achy, the relationships that are sticky, your tricky finances and job, the dishes that are calling your name, the toddler who cried all day, the anger, sadness, fear that lives in you, all of your seeming mistakes, all of your imperfections.
  • If you can, go way back and way out. Send thanks to your Kindergarten teacher, in fact send thanks to all your teachers, lovers, friends, and family. Honor them as your personally chosen and attracted gurus. Thank your invisible helpers too! You know, your angels, guides, ancestors (hello, they live in your DNA!), and all beings of goodness and light that are always with you.
  • Let your imagination run freely. Follow your inner voice and let the things, events, people, etc. come up naturally into your heart and mind.

Another way to do this is just holding a mental intention to greet anything and everything you see during your day with gratitude. I recently went to a mini-vacation with my husband and daughter that I really enjoyed. I felt recharged and super refreshed on our way back home. As soon as I stepped into our house though, I noticed how I was reacting to the things I saw: the laundry was calling my name, dustballs saying hi, my to do list on the messy countertop, etc. etc. With each step, I was leaving behind the tranquility that I had just cultivated. More importantly, I realized that how much I was programmed to ‘fix things’ and only focus on the negative. Which didn’t make sense. I live in a beautiful home in a lovely neighborhood, I am in a beautiful loving relationship, and have a daughter whom I adore. Without thinking about it, I made a quick decision to shift my energy. I started thanking every little thing that bothered me. From small to big, I thanked everything on my path silently, ending with the meditation I just taught you above after everyone went to bed but me. I fell into a deep and soulful meditation, and dove right into a restful sleep. More importantly, I continued to have a great day, creating my personal oasis right in the midst of my messy, corky, not-always-perfect home.

Let me know how you feel after you give this a go. If you feel lighter and brighter, consider practicing it for 40 days or until you feel a shift in your attitude.

Our minds are amazing things. With some dedication and a leap of faith, I know that you will have a door into the peace and tranquility in you, whenever and wherever you need it.

With love and light,

Damla

The Magic of Daily Mantras

magic2Here’s how making my own daily mantra creates magic in my life:

  • I imagine what I am going through. Right now, right this moment. Everything that may be giving me hell, everything that I am struggling with, inside or outside.
  • Then I imagine things shifting, unfolding, resolving, evolving, getting better, getting better than better.
  • Even if I don’t yet know HOW to get there, even if I am unsure of a million different things and have another million doubts, I imagine anyway.
  • Then I put this in words. Only positive words, only in the present tense, only in the first person.
  • Then magic starts to happen.

I create and post daily mantras to A Drop of Om Facebook Page since October 18th, 2014. After my daughter sleeps, with my laptop on my lap, I take a few moments to formulate a new mantra using the inner process I described above, I then schedule the Facebook post for the next day. As of today, I have posted 40 mantras and will continue to do so everyday for as long as I can.

After posting the mantra I keep coming back to it during my day and find that the mantra may shift how I am experiencing my present moment. If the day’s mantra is something like ‘I hug my vulnerabilities’ (Tweet that), I find that I am gentler towards myself. If it is ‘I accept this moment’ (Tweet that) there is a new quality and grace in how I may go through the not-so-glamorous parts of my day.

What I am also finding lately is that my next day usually unfolds so close to my mantra that it is sometimes mind blowing! I decided to give this a test and started posting more and more (what I think is) outrageous mantras. For instance the other day I posted ‘I am open to new and strong guidance from the universe’ (Tweet that). The very next morning, I woke up remembering one of the most vivid dreams I have had lately and had to run to my notebook to take notes about a new project. Or take today, my daily mantra was ‘blessed and thankful’ (Tweet that), I cannot begin to describe the day I have had today, so full of love, laughter, joy and wholeness.

It is as if there is a door that opens with the simple intention of positivity, love, and being open to outrageous possibilities. My goal is to make these mantras even more daring in the coming days. It is time to shoot for the stars 🙂

If you would like to join me on this ride, come on over to A Drop of Om Facebook Page and become a fan. I am using the hashtag #makeyourownmantra for all the mantras I post, so you can find them easily on Facebook or Twitter .

If you are already following me, please share the love and spread the word about these positive mantras by sharing the daily mantras and inviting your friends to follow them. I strongly believe that mantras can and will change your day, your life. Give that gift to yourself and your loved ones today. Here are two ways to do that:

  • Facebook post: ‘I have been following positive mantras by Damla Aktekin and I love them! Check her daily mantras at @A Drop of Om and http://adropofom.com‘ (Copy, edit, and post)
  • Twitter post: ‘I love Damla’s positive daily mantras. Check them out! https://www.facebook.com/adropofom #makeyourownmantra @adropofom’ (Tweet that)

If you want to learn how to make your own mantras, sign up to A Drop of Om’s email list by clicking here and then download your free Make Your Own Mantra Cheat Sheet as my gift to you.

I invite you to start making your own daily mantras and share them with the hashtag #makeyourownmantra, and @adropofom, or adropofom.com to refer people back to this site. Or better yet, post them in comments on this site or on Facebook. Let me know how YOUR DAY is unfolding with each mantra.

With love and light,

Damla

Abundance – A 40 Day Practice

bugday_filtered_croppedOne of the ways you can add mantra to your life is by dedicating 40 days to a particular mantra. You chant your chosen mantra silently or out loud at least 108 times a day. I also strongly recommend my students and clients to use a journal and write down anything that comes up before, during, or after your mantra practice.

I want to give you an example of such a practice that I did last year, which led me to create this website and blog, as well as revamp my yoga business completely, opening up many growth and business opportunities for me inside and out. I chose my focus to be creating more abundance and worked with the Sanskrit mantra Om Shrim Mahalakshmiyei Swaha. Here’s what happened:

Day 1: Asking for abundance feels shameful. As soon as I take my mala beads to my hands, start my mantra, and ask the ever abundant universe to send some of its richness my way, I feel ashamed of doing so. I sense a deeply ingrained false belief that asking for abundance is wrong. I realize this is just the type of practice that I need.

Day 3: I see number 8 everywhere. My car clocks 8008 miles, dinner is cooked at exactly 8pm, my daughter asks me to read her a Robin Hood story on page 88 of her book (!), and so on. I take it as a good sign since 8 is the symbol of infinity and abundance.

Day 4: The only limitations about money are in my head. Up until this point I believed that being a yoga teacher meant offering weekly classes in a yoga studio only (and that is what I did for a long time). I start to come across examples of women who offer yoga in doctor’s offices, corporate meeting rooms, who specialize in helping people with a particular issue, and who create new opportunities for themselves. This realization also means that I am the only one standing in my way. If I change my beliefs and assumptions, I can change where I am and where I will be.

Day 5: I am abundance. I get this new insight in my meditation right after my mantra practice. I can feel new pathways forming inside and around me.

Day 11: Good news. A yoga teacher friend calls out of the blue, asking me to take over two of her weekly classes.

Day 13: I make a spreadsheet of what I make as a yoga teacher. Without going into details, let’s say that I immediately feel depressed and constricted inside, seeing the picture of my financial not-so-well-being in front of me. In my pit of darkness, I am unable to see a solution and I just go to bed.

Day 14: Uh-oh. My friend calls me to say that she made a mistake and I won’t get the classes (sigh). I decide to switch my outlook to a positive one even though I am not yet sure how to change my business focus and create more abundance. I make a new and bold product/service sheet, a big and hopeful plan for future workshops, trainings and more.

Day 16: I think the universe agrees that I should stay positive :). I get a $8.62 check from a credit card that I closed two years ago.

Day 22: I come up with an idea for a book. Not disclosing that one :).

Day 34: A good surprise. I see a random email in my inbox which talks about a webinar on yoga business, starting in two hours! My husband watches my daughter as I listen in. It talks about how to create abundance as yoga teachers, while keeping your integrity and desire to help people. I take so many notes and I am super-duper inspired with lots of ideas bubbling up inside me. This is just what I needed!

Day 40: Coming full circle. Universe is abundance and it gives/sends me what I project. I only need to be abundance and all will come (Tweet that). I need to shine my light and trust that all I need is already here.

In looking back at my 40 days, I realize that I already knew the final lesson. But I hadn’t yet felt it in such a strong and clear way. Mantra practice, combined with journaling, showed me my inner dialog and opened me up to possibilities.

Practicing an abundance mantra of course doesn’t mean that you will sit there chanting, doing nothing else, and will end up getting a big fat paycheck (although that is a possibility). During the 40 day practice, I read, researched, wrote, reflected, reached out, and did as much as I could to open up possibilities and abundance in my business and personal life. Where mantra helped me greatly was making me more alert to the signs and symbols all around. As if life was leaving little post-its for me everywhere, to lead me in the right direction (like seeing that email about the webinar and acting on it).

Creating abundance is just one example of how mantra can help you with life’s challenges. If you are interested in learning more and adding mantra to your life as a tool, check out my Mantra Immersion workshops. In Mantra Immersion Part 1, I will teach you everything you need to know to begin your own mantra practice right away, including how and why mantra works, why it is so powerful in changing false beliefs, and other classical mantra practices in addition to the 40 Day practice. In Mantra Immersion Part 2, I will introduce new ways to experience mantras and use them for self-love and healing. If you can’t be present at the listed days/times/locations for my in-class workshops, keep in mind that I can always meet with you privately for an in-person or online class.

As always, feel free to reach me with questions any time.

May your path be filled with mantra goodness, and lots and lots and lots of abundance!

With love and light,

Damla

 

Make Your Own Mantra

flower fields_filtered_croppedYou have a mantra, you just don’t always realize what it is. There is a missed opportunity there. Without that realization, you also don’t grab the power to change your reality. Mantras do just that, they help you change your reality by changing your thoughts. (Tweet that).

Mantra is a word, phrase or sentence that you repeat in your mind. But it is so much more than that. In that word or sentence, you are summarizing your life, your feelings, your state of being. In that sense, mantra is a symbol for being the way you are or the way you want to be. (Tweet that)

Let’s say that you are in a particular situation where you don’t necessarily like ‘the way you are’ or ‘the way things are’ (which will always depend on ‘the way you are’). And let’s assume that your yogic powers allow you to catch and watch your deep beliefs about the way you are (I am not healthy, fit, loved, enough, powerful, confident, outgoing, thin, beautiful, etc. etc.). In that moment of realization, you did something wonderful, you identified your mantra. The next question is, now what?

I remember sitting in my dentist’s chair a few years back. This was a surgery to remove all three of my wisdom teeth. I was afraid of the full-body anesthesia so I decided to brave the local anesthesia. My goal was to be upbeat and positive no matter what happened although I wasn’t exactly sure how to do that. The local anesthetic made me numb but I could still feel as the surgeon pushed and pulled against my teeth, cutting and forcing, and cutting some more. I closed my eyes and started to repeat the first positive thing that came to my mind: ‘Flower fields, flower fields, flower fields.’ and I pictured the most beautiful flower field I could conjure up. As I went back home with an increasing pain and the realization of my freshly cut flesh, I kept reminding myself: ‘Flower fields’. I didn’t know it yet but I had created my own mantra. It still took me a while to heal fully, but I smiled through the jaw pain and eating with straws, using my newly found secret weapon. The gift of the mantra was this: I had chosen my reality.

In Yoga, we have a name for it ‘Pratipaksha Bhavanam’ (Yoga Sutras 2.33), in other words, replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.  Ultimately, you want to be free of duality, going beyond the negative and the positive, arriving at a neutral, blissful state of oneness. For the majority of us though, liberation begins with Pratipaksha Bhavanam.

To help you decipher how to make your own mantras, I created an easy 4 Step Cheat Sheet, one that details exactly how to tap into your positive thought pool.  To download your Make Your Own Mantra in 4 Simple Steps Cheat Sheet, click on the button below and enter your name and email (which will also add you to my joyful yogini email list where I will continue to share lots of mantra goodness with you). If you are already a subscriber, enter your email one more time to get your Cheat Sheet right away.

GIVE ME MY CHEAT SHEET
 

As always, keep me posted with your comments on how your mantra journey evolves. What challenges inspire you to make a mantra? What positive or negative mantras have you already been using? Which new ones did you add to your toolbox after checking out the cheat sheet? I could talk about this stuff all day! 🙂

With love and light,

Damla

Yes

YesThere is a super simple mantra that covers almost any challenge you might face: ‘Yes’.

‘Yes’ is a way to acknowledge life as it is. It is to say that you accept your partner, parent, child, pet, co-worker with everything they are. It is to say that this moment or this situation that you are in, is one that you are willing to pass through. These flow of passing thoughts, this body you have right now, these flaws, aches and pains are ok. It is to understand that saying ‘No’ will constrict you in a way that won’t allow life to pass through you.

So say,

  • Yes to life, because there is joy in acceptance
  • Yes to your body, because it is your temple
  • Yes to your thoughts, because they are of this universe
  • Yes to your challenges, whatever they may be, to salute them as your teachers
  • Yes to people around you, because you chose them and they chose you
  • Yes to your child and pets, and play as often as you can, because they absorb your energy, your joy
  • Yes to love, yes to love, yes to love. Please say yes to love. Love with all your heart, love all there is and all there ever will be. (Tweet that).

Say it and imagine it permeating your body, especially the parts that you feel are in need of the healing vibration of ‘Yes’.

For more yogic tips, tools and mantra goodness, subscribe to my Newsletter and like my Facebook page.

With love and light,

Damla

 

 

Obstacles and Love

My obstacles dissolve with love.”

Damla Aktekin

Gum is the seed sound for Ganesh. It holds the power of what Ganesh represents: the ability to remove obstacles seen or unseen, physical or subtle, past, present or future.

My obstacles dissolve with love. (Tweet that) Prior to chanting this mantra, bring forth an obstacle to work with as your intention. When you see your obstacle fully and acknowledge it with love, it softens and shifts. Your obstacle then may show you its soft belly, its vulnerability, making you love it (and yourself) even more.

Your obstacles have a purpose. They are your teachers. In chanting ‘Gum’ you are wishing this wisdom to come forth, so you can see clearly. All obstacles are part of you and your journey. To integrate your shadow into your being, to reach wisdom, you need to open up the conversation with all parts of your soul.

You can chant along with me 27 times or more.

Gum – 27 Reps by Damla Aktekin

For more yogic, tips, tools and mantra goodness, subscribe to my Newsletter and like my Facebook page.

With love and light,

Damla

 

Om Peace Om

Om Shanti Om

I open myself to joy, presence and peace.”

Damla Aktekin

Om Shanti Om. Om Peace Om. I invite everlasting joy to rest in my heart. I tap into the stillness of the universe. I open myself to joy, presence and peace. (Tweet that)

With this mantra, the power is in its simplicity. With each repetition you will feel the presence of something deep in your body and soul. The peace, the Om vibration of the universe is already there, you just need to listen and lean into it.

There is a quick rhythm to Om Shanti Om. It may feel awkward at first. If you keep at it, your breath will carry you through it. You may even find yourself moving and shaking gently with the tune. You can chant along with me 27 times or more.

Om Shanti Om – 27 Reps by Damla Aktekin

Let me know what brings you peace. For more yogic, tips, tools and mantra goodness, subscribe to my Newsletter and like my Facebook page.

With love and light,

Damla

 

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