No! Please Don’t Make Me Breathe!
Breathing was something I didn’t really want to do for most of my life. Not that I didn’t want to breath to stay alive but it was the breathing that meditation and yoga teachers nudged me to do … focusing on the air going in-and-out of my lungs – and being very present with it.
For years in attending yoga classes, the breathing part was my least favorite. It was boring – breathing in and breathing out and staying focused on it. On hindsight, I see I was overwhelmed by the swirl of my passing thoughts with a chaotic mind that kept nagging that this awareness practice was a waste of time.
Now that I practice, teach and guide Emotional Liberation* I’ve come to learn that breath is singularly the foundation that leads us to gaining self-mastery over the thoughts and fears that control our minds.
This is great news! Everyone of us has the capacity – to some degree – to breath into our bodies and gain awareness of our connection with, not only ourselves, but each other and our natural world.
This is where the magic happens.
A Sacred Union: Marrying the Breath with the Plant
But really getting serious about your awareness practice can be a big leap. This is where cannabis comes in. Our beloved plant has an ancient and enduring history in many cultures of facilitating higher consciousness. We’re in good company in communing with this plant medicine to access our deep healing resources.
Having said that, we also need to be disciplined and mature about it. Hence, the marriage of breath and cannabis will attract only those serious about learning to commune with the plant at a deep spiritual level.
There is an entire cannabis ‘stoner’ culture built around taking in as much cannabis as possible – usually in a concentrate form – with the implicit challenge of continuing to function. This is the opposite of what I’m talking about. The stoner culture is often about sedation and numbing while I’m talking about heightened awareness and sensation. (Note: sedation and numbing is a very real methodology for escaping difficult emotions. I consider cannabis, when compared to alcohol, prescription meds, etc as the gentlest of “escape” substances because once someone is ready to emerge from their “numbing” cocoon there’s little or no long-lasting detrimental effects with this plant.
So let me be clear, the dosing is very important. And I highly recommend micro-dosing for communing with the plant. I have prepared a Youtube video to explain this. The combination of breath and a little cannabis (a toke or two or three, depending on potency) is a most sacred and powerful union, especially with the “industrial strength” meditations we use in my work. One supports the other in carrying you to greater heights.
For those of you who have a high tolerance for cannabis, your tolerance level is easily reset and I suggest trying the micro-dosing approach. A smaller dose is going to nurture you into a state of awareness – take the plunge into sensation instead of sedation.
What to Use When?
Cannabis strains are important in this matter as well. It’s best to balance it with the bio-rhythms of your day and evening. For instance, if you’re going to start cleaning the house after your meditation you’ll likely want a sativa strain that will elevate your energy. An indica strain, on the other hand, will likely be more relaxing and perhaps a better fit for evening meditations and ensuing sleep (although the sativa/indica debate is wildly controversial).
Having said that, because we are all so biochemically and emotionally different, the same cannabis plant strain can take us down different paths. Experimenting is part of the fun in getting to know your interior self!
Creating Your Container
While it’s not essential, including ritual in our practice adds a delicious sacred container that is ours alone. I invite you to create a space wherein you can retreat and claim alone time for your regular awareness practice. This might be nothing more than lighting a candle and sitting in a quiet corner or having a more elaborate meditation table with objects that hold special intimate meaning for you.
You’ll have created the perfect space in which to partake of your cannabis. Give gratitude for this sacred alone time where your precious breath intertwines with the magic of this spirit medicine. In my Cannabis Elevation Ceremonies, participants share a blessing from one to another saying “may the spirit of this plant make you a master of your emotions”.
Have water nearby and a journal and a pen (I do like to have my cell phone voice memo app available – if I’d rather record my thoughts. Just make sure you’ve turned on the “do not disturb” function). The idea is learning how to intimately get to know yourself, and adding cannabis to the mix can offer a rich opportunity for self-discovery.
I invite you to join me in one of my free ONLINE Cannabis Elevation Ceremonies. Simply subscribe to my website and you’ll get the details for upcoming events.
WIth Love, Becca
* To protect the integrity of this work, Emotional Liberation℠ is a registered Service Mark.