Solar Heart Fire Meditations

When people get around a central fire or when gazing at sunrise or sunset, they enter into a state of reflection and presence—a natural meditation. We have not forgotten. The great fireball in the sky still captures our imagination—the sunrise and sunset still envelop us in awe.

Sun Gazing surya dristi
Gazing at the sun during sunrise or sunset (surya dristi) is an ancestral practice that has the effect of synchronizing our biorhythms with the rhythms of the cosmos, the radiance in our heart with that of the sun. The soft light at these sacred junctures allows our eyes to take in the full spectrum of light frequencies that the pineal gland requires for proper functioning.

The sun is the fire altar of our planetary life. As you gaze at it as it rises or sets, feel the rays reaching you from 93 million miles away and recognize that this is the source that generates and regenerates all life. Sun gazing is a meditation in itself that is practiced within yoga and around the world. As your eyes drink in the beauty of the moment, all other thought waves naturally rest. This is the state of namaskar, or bowing, to the extraordinary source of fire around which our lives literally revolve.

Solar Bhavana feeling the sun
Feel your own radiance, life-giving energy, and generosity, and all of the healing emotions that arise through that embodiment of the sun (the solar bhavana: joy, enthusiasm, connectedness, confidence, creative potency, and sustaining power).

Cosmic Breath circulating the inner sun
As you’re gazing upon the sun, you can draw solar prana into your heart with the breath. As you inhale, feel that radiance drawing into your body through the corresponding sandhyas, or sacred junctures:

Inhale the solar light 
… from the crown of the head to your third eye. 
… from the third eye center to the palate of the mouth. 
… from the palate of the mouth to your throat center. 
… from your throat center through to your heart center.

Bow your chin toward your heart and pause in kumbhaka (retaining the inhale without straining) and feel the space outside of time. Offer prayers, the simple mantra of Om or the solar mantra Om Hum Suraye Namaha. As you exhale, feel the solar breath return from the heart center back to the crown. Continue to breathe the light of the sun through the cycle of your breath within that space as offerings to the inner Heart Fire, then rest in meditation.

This article is excerpted from Tending the Heart Fire: Living in Flow with the Pulse of Life, © 2014, by Shiva Rea.

Shiva Rea, MA, a global Prana Vinyasa teacher, activist, and innovator in the evolution of vinyasa yoga, is founder of Prana Vinyasa and the Samudra Global School for Living Yoga.

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