Country music and Bhakti yoga 


I went to a wonderful concert recently, performed by the cast of the Nashville TV series. It was at the beautiful setting of the Royal Albert Hall in London. And I cried the whole way through! 

Country music is, I find, especially emotional and passionate. The performers were incredible, loving and heartfelt. They connected with my heart and literally broke it open with their words and intention. Once the tears started to flow there was no stopping them. I realised it wasn’t just the music that was making me cry, it was the catalyst for me to release my emotions. 

It reminded me very much of my stay in India where I lived in an ashram and joined in with a 7 day Bhakti yoga celebration; Bhakti yoga is the practice of chanting as a way of connecting to the divine. We were in Vrindavan, which is the birthplace of the Hindu God Krishna, Krishna is the lover God! He had many women, gopis, who were in love with him and folllowed him around. So for days we listened to stories and chanted together culminating in the final day when an ecstatic, love fest, dance party broke out! The high vibration energy and the love between us all was palpable – we were connected to each other and to the divine and it was an incredible dance and flow of beauty and love – as you can see in the photo. 

Listening to the Nashville concert had a similar effect of joining everyone in the room by the heart. I realised, as the tears were running down my face, that I’ve kept my heart on lock down for a long time now. My heart was badly broken and with the best intentions of protecting it I unconsciously put it carefully in a safe place, on lock down. As the music played and my emotions flooded to the surface I could feel my heart cracking open and allowing in the love and the pain. It felt good and scary and exhausting, a huge relief. 

It felt so much better to experience the emotions, not that it was comfortable, than to shut them down. Feeling is being alive. My whole body shifted, my shoulders relaxed and I could move more freely. The audience stood up and danced for the last few songs, it’s no accident that music and dancing are intrinsically connected. When the emotion is coming up moving your body helps it move through you and out, hence ‘e-motion’. Dancing is an awesome way to do this, moving your hips and shoulders, often the places in the body emotion and tension gets stuck. One of my yoga teachers told me that if I’m feeling uninspired with my home practice, to turn on some tunes and just move my body in any way that feels good – I do this all the time and I love it! Try it… 😘

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