I don’t know what the weather is like where you are as you read this, but here in Columbus, Ohio it’s cold. Last week was so warm, the trees started to blossom and flowers have appeared. Now we have 20 degree nights and 40 degree days. I’m wearing sweaters again. In this volatile climate as spring forces winter to let go, it’s good for your body and mind to get comfortable.
Everyone has their own way into comfort. Lately for me, it’s wrapping myself in blankets, doing restorative yoga poses and making chai tea. I love putting my legs up the wall, or resting on a chair. I wrap myself in one or two blankets at the same time to get really cozy. You should practice either for at least 10 minutes.
I love The Woman’s Yoga Book by Bobby Clennell with her illustrations. It details which poses are right for you based on what you need. (You should always consult a professional before practicing yoga poses!) That said, there is no harm in wrapping yourself in blankets, covering your eyes and resting.
My friend was telling me it’s also good to practice twists at this time of year. He explained it as having to do with resistance and flow, finding that place in the body where you meet both. The action in the body mirrors what is taking place outside, the back and forth of warmth and coolness as spring tries to balance itself on the branches.
I’m also finding that with recent events I’m more reactive - frustration, heat, passionate debate, attachment, despair are welling up inside of me. And I find when that starts to root itself in the body it is really helpful to let go and get comfortable in the resistance and flow of conflict; to acknowledge it but also let it move through you.
Deal with what is not comfortable by getting extra comfortable.
And then there is chai tea. So warming, sweet, spicy, easy to make and good for your digestion.
Homemade Columbus, Ohio Chai
| 1 gallon of fresh, spring water
| 15 slices of fresh ginger
| about 40 cloves (I get most of my spices and seeds from North Market Spices.)
| about 40 green cardamom pods, cracked
| about 40 peppercorns
| 5-6 cinnamon sticks
| black tea, either 8-10 teabags or loose leaf enough for 8-10 cups (I prefer PG Tips.)
Start by boiling the water in a big pot. Once it’s at a rolling boil add all the spices. Cover at high heat for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the stove and add the tea bags or loose leaf tea. Steep tea for about 2 minutes. Strain away the spices and serve immediately with warm milk and honey. Save the rest for another day.
(Note: I heat the milk and honey in a separate small pot so it’s blended and hot and ready to be poured right over the chai.)
May loving kindness spread throughout the world.