by Donna Davidge, Owner/Operator of Sewall House Yoga Retreat
Recently I created a book proposal for a contest for Hay House Publishing. I have known of Louise Hay since the 1990s when I discovered her amazing little book Heal Your Body: The Mental Causes for Physical Illness and the Metaphysical Way to Overcome Them.
Louise lived a long healthy life after healing herself of vaginal cancer, as she called it. It’s interesting because she calls it that instead of “cervical” or some other words we hear more frequently when describing dis-ease in that part of the body. She openly writes about the violation of her body that occurred at a very young age in that part of her body. She cured herself of this illness with affirmations to heal the trauma that occurred as a result of her childhood.
In my early twenties (the 1970s) I developed abnormal cells in that part of my body. I was frozen with liquid nitrogen and luckily ever since have been healthy there. My issues, however, were far from resolved.
In the 1990s, the era of the audiocassette, I laid on the floor almost as if doing yoga nidra, which has become a popular lying down guided meditation today (and which we offer at Sewall House Yoga Retreat), listening over and over to Louise’s voice urging the listener to imagine the life of their own parents at age five, to imagine what may have been happening to them to cause them to become who they were.
Unraveling our relationship with our parents can be a revealing, complex analysis and awakening. Louise Hay helped me reflect on how our family roots affect us. I write about that in my own memoir Balancing with Bunions. If we do not know our roots it can be challenging to know who we are, and perhaps more importantly, why we are who we are.
Healing Through Kundalini Awareness
My new book — as yet unpublished at this writing — is titled Healing Through Kundalini Awareness. Instead of putting the word yoga in the title I wanted to invite the reader to become curious about Kundalini (even though the book contains some of the gem practices of Kundalini yoga). Perhaps the reader has heard of Kundalini before. Perhaps they have not. Perhaps they may wonder about this awareness that can heal them.
Kundalini, through all its mystery of being called sexual and dangerous, is merely the wonderful physically vital energy that is gifted to each and every one of us for our time on earth. Life is not easy. We have to work on things — education, relationships, jobs, lifestyle — but knowing that we have this amazing life force called Kundalini inside is an eye-opening way to direct the gift of life in each of us.
For the Hay House contest, the participants were connected to an app where we could ask questions of the many others in the program. Though I didn’t spend a lot of time on the app, where many discussions occurred, I did find an extremely valuable and supportive group of women who met each week for ninety minutes via Zoom. The support of this diverse group of women — from therapists to interior designers to walking pilgrims to photographers — was illuminating and kept us all going toward the goal of writing a professional book proposal.
Hay House gave excellent online instructions. Knowing full well that the likelihood of any one of us winning the contest was not very high, the Hay House folks, as Louise Hay had done, shared their knowledge with clarity, positivity, and accuracy. The time was well spent, even just to get me to the finish line of a book proposal. I hired an editor, who thought I was not far enough along. In six weeks she put in 70 helpful hours to direct the project to the finish line. She became another part of the team as the support group was for each other.
Today we had our final meeting before the submission deadline of April 13, 2023.
Some of us (I was one) had clicked the send button! A few more were almost there. A few were waiting until the second possible deadline in August. One of the women told me that the chakra questions I had shared (as the first presenter of our series) had helped her form the writing of the spiritual journey of her pilgrimage in Spain.
I elaborate a bit more on those chakra questions in the book. However, as the Sewall House logo says, we like to help people experience “Simplicity in a Complex World”, so I present to you the questions in their original, simplified form.
The subtitle of the new book became “Simple Steps for Courage, Inner Calm, and Clarity”, all things that Kundalini Yoga has helped me (and the student in my book) feel as a result of the sounds, the breath, and the moves or static holds of Kundalini Yoga. Our teacher said the Information Age, this technology age we live in, is moving toward overwhelm for our brain and nervous systems. It certainly is for me. That can be a whole other article!
In the meantime, here are the questions. I hope they help you!
Donna’s Chakra Questions
In Kundalini yoga, we speak of being finite beings connected to the infinite. Does that make sense to you? See if these questions help you discover it!
Chakra 1 – Root
- Do you know your deepest fear?
- Is there anywhere in your life you know you need to let go
- Do you feel safe? Part of a tribe? If so, what tribe?
Chakra 2 – Groin
- How do you create your life daily?
- What are you passionate about?
- Are you in touch with your feelings?
Chakra 3 – Solar Plexus / Navel
- Do you trust yourself?
- Do you feel empowered?
- Does insecurity make you angry or defensive?
Chakra 4 – Heart
- Do you know what it means to have your heart open?
- Are you able to grieve?
- Are you able to connect to others? Strangers or not, animals, plants, or any being?
Chakra 5 – Throat
- Are you able to express yourself well with words? Are the words truly honest and clear?
- What words do you use in your self-talk?
- Are you comfortable chanting?
Chakra 6 – Third Eye
- Do you feel intuitive?
- Do you make quiet time to listen to your inner voice?
- Do you feel there is guidance outside yourself to listen to in this quiet?
Chakra 7 – Crown
- Have you ever had a spiritual experience?
- Have you ever felt connected to everything/all?
- Do you ever sense that you are more than your body?
I hope these questions help you in your journey, and I hope that journey brings you to Sewall House Yoga Retreat sometime along the way!