A restorative practice typically features supported body positions, breath awareness and guided visualizations. Gravity is your best friend in this practice, if you can let go into its grounding force.
Resting, in and of itself, is a radical practice in our go-go-go culture. A restorative practice whose focus is seeing inward may seem even more backwards. It is.
“Looking out” is our habit. Looking out for number one, looking out for what’s on the horizon, looking out for trouble, looking out to see what we can see. Indeed, can we say are looking out and taking in what’s around us or are we projecting our beliefs about ourselves and the world onto the world (seeing what we want to see). Well, maybe we can at least say this much: always being on the look out is exhausting.
A guided restorative practice that focuses on the ajna chakra is a practice that leads the attention inward. Looking within is said to occur “the third eye,” the ajna chakra, the space in the middle of the forehead just above our outward-looking eyes.
To see inward is to see beyond the veil of right and wrong, of good and bad, and all the polarities that pull us this way and that. And yet to see inward is not to blur our vision either (“It’s all good, man…”).
The ajna chakra governs intuition, inspiration and insight – qualities associated with clarity. Thus to see inward is to see the true nature of things: as they are (not how we want them to be).
And yet, while it would seem that looking inward with our eyes closed would cause us to be stumbling around in the dark, it’s ironically, just the opposite. But stepping backwards, resting for awhile and looking in, we learn to see more clearly so when we walk forward into the world, we can do so with our eyes wide open, with compassion and grace.