Embodied Samadhi

Alex Grey Chakras

Image by Alex Gray

I was being asked to “drop the body” and I felt rebellion brewing up under the surface.  The well meaning yoga teacher was attempting to point out the many ways in which we contract our bodies in fear or barricade ourselves from the assumed trauma which we believe will invariably reach us in the next moment or two.  In fact, this protection, shutting down, hiding and breath holding has taken up residence in so many of us without our conscious awareness.

The “rebellion” that I felt came from many years of being within meditative and spiritual communities that encouraged us  to “drop our bodies” or “leave our bodies” in order to become “enlightened” or reach the state of Samadhi or pure consciousness apart from the mind (and body).  Since I inhabit a creative woman’s body this time around and am extremely connected to the natural world this always made no sense to me.

Spending many years making myself “wrong” for feeling as I did I would return over and over to a practice that had no grounding – or if the truth be know “meaning” for me.  It was easy for me to access those “higher states of spiritual consciousness” however my body was begging me to not leave it behind and to inhabit the “soul” of my being which can be a little messy and definitely divinely feminine!

Take a good long look at Alex Gray’s famous image above and note that this being is not only completely present in  body, but also interconnected with the earth and all elements.  We also see this in the image of Buddha below and within the quote from an influential and famous ascetic-philosopher of the 20th century Buddhadasa Bhikkhu (1906-1993) who was known as an innovative re-interpreter of Buddhist doctrine and Thai folk beliefs. Buddha’s right hand touching the earth informs us that without using any words, the Buddha calls on the Earth to bear witness.  This “earth mudra” is a beautiful example of the integration of  “embodied cognition” and a respect for and celebration of the divine feminine, creative embodied presence.

ashvattha-buddha“The entire cosmos is a cooperative. The sun, the moon, and the stars live together as a cooperative. The same is true for humans and animals, trees, and the Earth. When we realize that the world is a mutual, interdependent, cooperative enterprise — then we can build a noble environment. If our lives are not based on this truth, then we shall perish.” –Buddhadasa Bhikkhu

The times we live in are requesting – no demanding – that we embody and perhaps redefine the concept of samadhi – to acquire integration, or wholeness, or truth within the awareness of deep interconnection or “being” with all that is.  This means staying in the body and integrating it as an amazing vehicle from which we can serve others and bring our own wisdom, talents, creativity and gifts.  This means remembering that we are the earth and all elements so deeply interconnected that it would blow our minds if we could really see and feel it!

“All is one” – a non-dualistic frame of reference for relationship and cooperation.  This means taking action from a fully integrated body inhabiting the miracle of breath that moves in and out from a universal source that gives life to everything and everyone in the cosmos.  Ubuntu – essential interdependence. The Divine Feminine in partnership with the Divine Masculine.


Everything is energy.  The blueprint that we came in with at birth is fully integrated at this deep level of Source – deeply relaxed, open and available with access to an unlimited source of energy.  After years of living in this body we have somehow managed to cover up this innate blueprint with layers and layers of protection, assumptions, beliefs, past traumas, and hiding.

This is not a “bad thing” – it simply is a state of being for survival that we have accepted and perpetuate in our day to day life moments.  This is what my yoga teacher meant by “dropping the body” – simply being aware of and then letting go of anything that is in the way of living from your natural state of being.

Fully inhabiting the breath and clearing away patterns that block this way of being is essential for living life in the deepest and most creative expression that we came in with – resonance with life.  Neglecting the “brain” of the intellect, the heart, the gut, our animalistic rhythms and even the minutest of cells within our body will only bring us to separation from ourselves, others, the natural world and the entire cosmos.

True belonging is embodied, collaborative and cooperative.  We are evolving into Universal Humanity.  Take your place….


photo(58)  Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to drop the layers that cover the natural innate blueprint we came in with and reveal, through a combination of evolutionary energy work, Jin Shin Jyutus, Reiki and breath re-patterning, the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.

For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com.  Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available.  Please inquire.  Skype: gaye.abbott


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Non-Separation and the Breath


A few years ago a story of the consciousness of interconnection unfolded right before my eyes.  This happened from a place of non-separation, or in other words a real sense of oneness between people and nature.  It is a simple story really – one of three men and a tree.

Two of the men were leaders within their Balinese community.  One man had cut down a tree without permission from his community village.  You see in Bali one must obtain the permission of the entire village before cutting down a tree.  The sense of interconnectedness with nature and among themselves pervades the Balinese culture.

These two leaders were discussing – with tears flowing down their faces – what kind of consequences the man who had cut down the tree must face.  He had apparently done this before, most likely for carving art pieces to sell, so the discussion was a serious one.  I never found out what they did decide, but I did get to sit with one of the leaders and share meditation and mutual discussion about cultures translated through his brother.  I thanked him for this beautiful living example of  deep awareness on how each interconnected being or life form intimately affects another.

How is it that we forget that we are not separate from anything or anyone when our  breath tells us that we are constantly intimately connected.  We share the very air we breathe with all living things.  My dear friend and lifelong mentor, Richard MillerMiller, Ph.D of iRest  (grounded and concrete tools to come back home to a place of non-separation and well being) spoke eloquently on non-separation at the Summer of Peace through The Shift Network recently.  He emphasized that the ultimate healing for all humans lies first in our sense of separation from ourselves and secondly the “other”, or the world outside of ourselves.

In a recent class I was privileged to facilitate – Decrease Anxiety, Indulge Inner Peace – I remember saying that I believe the core of anxiety comes from when we go away from or leave behind our deep purpose in life, which comes from our wholeness.  This results in feeling a sense of separation.  This very sense of separation activates anxiety.

Our strong innate imprinting to belong and to survive  as we grow up into adults often times takes us away from the very sense of already belonging/deep interconnection that is a gift we are given at birth.  This leave taking from our  feeling of harmony with ourselves and life itself brings us to “war” within and without.

Deep abiding inner peace and equanimity brings us home to the state of non-separation, or as Richard says “non-dual” state of being.  What better tool to resonate with than the breath to remind us over and over and over that we are an integral part of the whole and never separate.  Inhale connected to exhale sharing with an abundant circle of life in the moment.  When we resonate this peaceful place those around us will attune to the same state.

Be the change you wish to see in the world….come back home.


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