A song thrush sat perched on the tippity top branch of a tree and turned to her friend and asked, "How do you begin your day, my dear?"
With her brown painted belly the other song thrush turned her head in delight, "With a joyous tune, full of hope, love and ease."
We all take part in and are a part of cycles. The cycle of life. The cycle of the day, the week, the month or the year. The cycle of the seasons. The cycle of the moon. The cycle of female menstruation. The cycle of the tides. The cycle of digestion and elimination and more. Everything is created from seed, transforming, growing and decaying.
Many of us go through daily morning routines and rituals that help set a tone or prepare us for what lies ahead. What do you do in the morning that grounds you for your daily activities? Do you have something that you do regularly and cannot skip or miss?
Daily practices may differ by culture and religion. The daily practices recommended by Ayurveda philosophy are called dinacharya. From yoga to cleansing or bathing to reciting of prayer or mantras, the Ayurvedic texts provide us with a wealth of knowledge on proper ways to begin our day which helps increase vitality and maintain health.
One of the most basic ways we can begin our day is with the element water or aap. Water is an essential element for all humans. The intake of water required for each person may vary according to their energies and activity or exercise.
Vata varys 6-8 cups
Pitta about 6 cups
Kapha varys 4-6 cups
Beginning the day with warm or room temperature water awakens the flow of energy downward aiding and supporting natural elimination of particles that are not needed from the day before. A little lemon in your water adds a sweetness and supports digestion. Add local, raw honey in the proper amount to benefit your immune health or ojas.
Vata 1/4 tsp.
Pitta 1/4-1/2 tsp.
Kapha 1/2 tsp.
*as a rule of thumb do not add honey to hot water. This will disturb it's natural properties.
A tribute to the stillness and pureness of morning I'm sharing with you a part of Kenneth Rexroth's poem. Today see if you can take a slower pace in the morning. Sit and admire nature or peacefully sip your lemon water with a book. Take time to set an intention that will be your focus for the day.
From THE SILVER SWAN by Kenneth Rexroth
An hour before sunrise, The moon low in the East, Soon it will pass the sun. The Morning Star hangs like a Lamp, beside the crescent, Above the greying horizon. The air warm, perfumed, An unseasonably warm, Rainy Autumn, nevertheless The leaves turn color, contour By contour down the mountains. I watch the wavering, Coiling of the smoke of a Stick of temple incense in The rays of my reading lamp. Moonlight appears on my wall As though I raised it by Incantation. I go out Into the wooded garden And walk, nude, except for my Sandals, through light and dark banded Like a field of sleeping tigers. Our raccoons watch me from the Walnut tree, the opossums Glide out of sight under the Woodpile.