THE INNER SMILE
HOW TO BE YOUR OWN BEST BELOVED!
I literally used to wake up and worry, I’d wake up with heart palpitations and all the scary things that could possibly go wrong that day would come flooding into my consciousness. These days, most days…… I wake up and I smile! And I choose to to focus on gratitude, peace and joy instead. I believe my morning inner smile practice has been and will continue to be one of my most powerful allies in this exciting transformative process of my health and my life……and most definitely in learning to love my body and all aspects of myself!
And when I say ‘smile’, I don’t mean that outer social smile that we’ve been conditioned to wear in public, or a smile we send out because we so very much want to be warmed up with a reciprocal smile from someone else. What I’m talking about here is a genuine ‘real deal’ smile, and the FEELING of that in your body. The feel of watching the most exquisite sunset; the feel of having a good giggle with your best friends; the feeling of being really ‘turned on’; the feeling of joy and heart melting wonder at a new born baby, the innocence and playfulness of children, the experience of deep gratitude; the feel of the best dance / swim / love making / funny movie ever! You might have noticed that the key word here is FEEL – its the difference between a physical social smile and a truly genuine smile that emerges from an open heart and that is a pure unconditional expression of joy.
I used to wonder whether its good to smile when you don’t feel it, and of course its not, all the time. It’s really important to acknowledge all of our feelings, isn’t it. But the point is, this exercise of inner smile, cultivates our capacity to switch on the genuine joy, simply by tuning into that which normally makes us feel loving and joyful. It doesn’t mean you can’t attend to other emotions later…..and if you’re not naturally prone to states of joy, this can take a little practice, but its a thousand times more than worth it… Soon you’ll be able to tune into different states of joy purely by intention at the flick of a switch (and yes, of course there are days when its more challenging!) And understanding the science of how it affects my body gives me mega incentive to literally SMILE MY HEART INSIDE OUT!!
WHAT IS THE INNER SMILE MEDITATION?
The traditional way to practice is by visualising the sun in front of you . You then allow this to generate loving, smiling energy which you absorb in through your third eye (point between the eyebrows), into the Crystal Palace (where the master endocrine glands reside) and then allowing this energy to flow down into the heart and through the whole body. You can focus on sending your loving smiling energy to your Yin organs, or your endocrine glands, or your bones, and you can get creative and make it your own and different every day! For the full feminine version I would definitely finish with drawing the heart and womb energy together and spiralling it in your lower tantien just below your navel center. Check out the free guided meditation on my home page www.taotreasures.com
FABULOUS FACTS ABOUT THE SMILE
- It enhances the alkalinity of our body’s cells. This is tremendously significant when we know that an over acidic body is a breeding ground for unhealthy, irregular cell replication.
- Linked to the above benefit, the Inner smile boosts our immune system enormously.. Studies have shown that if you give someone a nasty glare you can deplete the production of their white blood cells (ie our immune function) for up to seven hours. Oooh nasty! But think about the opposite scenario, if you give someone a genuine smile of joy, you can positively affect the reproduction of their white blood cells for up to seven hours…… and, to take that one step further, just imagine how we can affect our own immune system when we smile inwardly at ourselves. Yes, we really do have the power to change our own inner landscape, and it is so simple, its almost ridiculous!
- The Inner Smile connects us to our body – we can have a tendency to spend vast amounts of time in our heads, thinking, over thinking, worrying, or even higher still, out of our body, but that’s not really helpful if we want to be grounded, present and effective! The Inner Smile can help us have a relationship with all the different parts of our body, to feel when these different parts are disconnected or need more healing help. We literally can direct our smile to heal any part of our body. And we can really feel these parts of our body softening and melting open as they receive our joyful attention.
It is possible, as well, that you can ‘fake it to make it’ . Studies have shown that the mere act of upturning the sides of the mouth sends physiological messages to the brain that activate our feel good hormones and tell it that all is well in our world. However, it is the COMBINATION of our upturned mouth with the real deal joyful emotion AND our intention that is POTENT beyond words.
Go on, surprise them…. sending them your loving presence and feel good vibes, will have those cells sitting up and taking notice. You’ll have them tingling and dancing with expectation of good things to come in absolutely no time at all.
Yes, we totally do have that power – taoist wisdom understands that where our ‘intention goes energy flows’. The inner smile really does lead to inner happiness and outer radiance….. let’s celebrate our joyful smile as the precious treasure it is.