Prostrations are the approved exercise by the Architect of the human body for the strength to break down the ego for service to others. Brahma designed the body to enjoy this beautiful and expansive universe and to be useful and helpful to its inhabitants. According to the Sacred Text, full body prostrations are an important morning exercise for keeping the body trim and fit. There are many verses in the Ṛigveda that describe the virtue of doing them, but none that describes how, so here is one way.

In the early morning before sunrise, stand with the feet a little apart and raise the hands high above the head as if reaching to heaven for God. Grasp for the breath and lower the arms to bring the palms together at heart level. This can be a position to stop in when tired, but most of the time it will be momentary. While continuing to inhale, the hands separate, and as you come to a kneeling position, place the palms on the ground a few inches to a foot in front and a foot or so apart. Begin exhalation and extend the right hand forward about a foot and a half to two feet, then the left, and finish exhalation while lowering the body to the ground. Swing both arms forward, stretch out the body and touch the forehead to the Goddess, Mother Earth. Begin to draw in the breath, draw back the hands, and push the upper body off the ground. Step back with the left hand, then the right until they are in front of you and you are kneeling. On exhalation push off the ground, stand upright, and raise the hands high above the head and reach for God. That completes one prostration. They can be repeated any number of times, I keep track to twenty-four and do that three times for seventy-two prostrations.

In a weeklong meditation retreat, one of the skinniest teachers in the world challenged us students to a prostration contest. His assurances of proficiency coupled with our struggles assured him of no takers amongst us. It was funny, but seriously, prostrations done first thing in the morning and their purpose is clear by the extra energy during the day. Prostrations are a virtuous activity to engage in with countless ways of enjoying. Some religious practitioners prostrate the entire distance to a Sacred Shrine, or around the site. The Creator urges one to wake before dawn, go anywhere, and prostrate until the body is glistening with sweat and roaring filling the belly with the breath. That gives a body a nice warm glow for sitting down in the sun to praise with light.

To move the Architect is connected with and to be comfortable in the body extend one’s self before for the Presence to be present with and the Protector to AH in the morning to be with you.

Prostrations in Nine Steps

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