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Words as Weapons

I wouldn’t call myself an avid yoga participant. On average, I would say I attend a yoga or PiYo Live class once a week (can you call Piyo Live yoga? I digress…). This week I attended a yoga class taught by Mary Hunter.

There are many reasons I schedule this type of class into my calendar weekly, but the main one would be because my muscles are so tight – my hips, shoulders, back – all tight. Shocker. I know. That I would attend a yoga class for flexibility training. Not surprising. But what was surprising to me was what I learned about chakras, specifically chakra 5 in this specific class, and how much Christian truth I pulled from this non-Christian teaching.

Chakra 5 is also called the throat chakra. It is the center of communication, sound and expression. If you are like me and need to google “chakra” to be able to follow along, let me help you. Google tells me that chakras are our energy centers. The word itself means “wheel” in Sanskrit or “circle”. They are the “openings for life energy to flow into and out of our aura. Their main function is to vitalize the physical body and to bring a higher development to our self-consciousness”.

The Bible tells me the Holy Spirit is my energy center. Genesis 2:7 says, “Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being”.  The Matthew Henry Commentary on this passage is something worth contemplating, especially in light of the eastern energy system definition and how it’s brought up in yoga class. It says this about the creation of man and this “breath of life”: “It {soul/energy} takes its rise from the breath of heaven, and is produced by it. It was not made of the earth as the body was; it is a pity then that it should cleave to the earth, and mind earthly things. It came immediately from God; He gave it to be put into the body……Let the soul which God has breathed into us breathe after Him; and let it be for Him, since it is from Him…………It {soul/energy} takes its lodging in a house of clay, and is the life and support of it. It is by it that man is a living soul, that is, a living man; for the soul is the man”.

Pretty cool, right? We all have a supernatural “energy” inside us – this beautiful “breath of life” directly breathed into us from the Creator of life itself. And in return we get to breathe for Him. For in Him we live, move and have our being (Acts 17:28a).

But back to chakra 5. Mary cued us through an excellent workout tailored around our throat chakra. We were reminded to be mindful of this specific physical part of our body and were put through poses to help strengthen and stretch it. She also taught about the impact our words have on us and others, on our health and well-being. Solomon knew this too. If you know nothing about Solomon in the Bible, know that he was the smartest person. Ever. 1 Kings 4:29 says “God gave Solomon very great insight, and a breadth of understanding as measureless as the sand on the seashore”. He composed 3000 Proverbs, some of which are in the Bible.

Proverbs 16:24 “Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones”.

Proverbs 17:10 “A rebuke impresses a discerning person; more than a hundred lashes a fool”.

Proverbs 17:27 “The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered”.

Proverbs 18:2 “Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions”.

Proverbs 21:23 “Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity”.

Proverbs 24:26 “An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips”.

Words can be weapons.

Words can bring healing.

Words we don’t even verbalize.

What you say to others matters. What you say to yourself also matters. I think sometimes we might be the most condemning with our words to ourselves. Think about what Solomon says about gracious words being healing. How you think about yourself, the words you use in your internal dialogue hold weight and impact your actions. They have the power to heal, or to harm. You can help your body heal by giving yourself grace, using words of affirmation, not condemnation or comparison. By being kind to others with your choice of language, but also being kind to yourself. Respecting yourself enough to be pleasant and positive.

So I thank Mary for piquing my interest about the throat chakra. For prompting me to learn more about the power of words and what the Bible has to say about our heavenly energy. And for helping me be more mindful with the words I use.

Maybe this will inspire you to get to a yoga class. Or PiYo Live, maybe.      

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