Image via WikipediaPhysical exercise as shamanic prayer-shifting: This winter, besides power-strolling at dawn after sacred-play sessions with the Tortoise Cat, I returned to rounds of old fashioned military PT style muscle strength exercises, all done without equipment, such as the push-up and the sit-up (now done as crunches) along with many others.
Since I took up full-time self-employment after leaving my beloved airport ground-handling 'ramper' job I have found it more and more difficult to get enough physical exercise from conscious, purposeful, value-adding physical movement during the ordinary course of doing my daily business. I love physical work. Yet I do not find it fulfilling for long to exercise for the sake of exercise. Of course this is nothing more than a personal preference I have retained over many years, that I am not likely to give up easily. I prefer exercise to happen naturally as I live my purpose(s) for being on earth and I know there are many creative ways to just do this.
So, until more painting or building maintenance gigs come along, instead exercising my muscles for the sake of physical health first, I am tying each exercise to corresponding subtle energy-center(s) of the body and associated prayer topics or issues. I do each exercise as a contemplation of the closet matching prayer-requests from my and the circle's prayer lists. I use a glyph similar to the kabbalistic Tree of Life (that is Spirit-taught to me through shamanic journeying and dreaming) as a way of mapping prayer-shift topics onto my body.
So far this program is working out as a way of being and doing shamanic-shifting prayer treatments and physical exercise work-outs at once. Since cycles of daily prayer are a main part of my life-mission, doing these strengthening physical exercises as prayer (which is just another way of doing an ancient pratice, I realize) keeps me motivated and doesn't take up extra periods of the day. I choose equipment-free exercising because it helps me focus on my body as a Tree of Life growing on earth to produce good fruit.