I kinda write that as a joke because it’s so New Age-y to call the menstrual period sacred, but, honestly, the more I learn about this time of the month, the more I see how special it actually is.
I had my first inkling that periods are special during an Excavation I was giving to a woman who had been dealing with uterine cysts. I was immediately told by her guiding energy that she could ‘wash these away with her period.’ Suffice it to say, she was more than a bit incredulous at this information since she had been dealing with cysts and infertility for many years. In fact, she was planning to see a surgeon in the coming months to remove the growths in the hopes of becoming pregnant. We were then shown that if she set an intention to wash away her ideas about ‘fertility’ and ‘cysts’ during her menstrual cycle that she could become pregnant. She wasn’t convinced, but I was definitely intrigued.
I did some research after this session since I loved the idea of shedding ideas as well as waste material. A girlfriend of mine from years back insisted that I bleed into the earth once a month, preferably with the full moon (!), and to set the intention to wash away all that was not necessary. She belonged to a goddess group and it just seemed too out there for me at the time, and also, kind of gross, not to mention a bit awkward with all the neighbors. Somehow, this new piece of info coupled with this memory (one that always made me laugh, I might add), seriously intrigued me. I just so happened to be reading a book called “Wheels of Light” which is about first chakra issues, and there was a paragraph relating similar information. I read it with relish:
“This time of the month is a sloughing-off period, an elimination cycle, which is also intended to eliminate concepts, ideas, and bad feelings along with any impurities expelled with the flow of blood.”
I recalled, also, the chapter on the pain body from Ekhart Tolle’s beautiful “Power Of Now.” He says that our culture (unfortunately) encourages women to attach to collective pain once a month with their periods. That pain incapacitates us. Makes us victims. Makes us suffer. Makes us not want to get out of bed. Seriously, ladies, can you disagree? I spent decades, once a month, popping Advil (or Vicodin if I’d had dental surgery recently!) at 6 hour intervals. I also contended with severe depressive PMS which would hit like a bolt of lightning and bring me low. I think of all the shame through the years of ‘having my period.’ Keeping tampons out of sight, worrying about leaking, fretting about telling a romantic partner I was “on the rag.” There is built-in shame — an uncleanliness and ickiness — associated with this time of the month.
Once I became conscious of what Tolle describes as the pain body, I decided to detach from it. This entails noticing the pain and then choosing not to resist, but to relax into it. This separated me immensely from the discomfort. I then opted to not feed the pain body with negative ideas about ‘my period pain.’ I told myself, “oh yes, that’s just my body expelling waste material. I don’t need to worry about it.” And, with that thought, I began to expel ideas that were also waste material. I realized that if I used this time of the month to get rid of any and all ideas that were negative, then, what the heck, I’d be ahead of the game. What harm could it do!
I keep my ears open for more ideas about menstruation. I know, it does sound funny! But, everything I’ve tried so far has had remarkable results, from shedding unhelpful beliefs by setting intention to detaching from the pain body. I think women are actually lucky that they get to expel negative thought patterns and bodily material once a month.
The latest thing I’ve learned, that I want to share with you, is from an exquisite massage therapist and healer, Ann Myers, who is a serious student of vedic thought. She told me that women absorb 75% of the world’s negativity –Ugh!– and the period then gives them the chance to slough it off once a month. She talked about how after women hit menopause, they tend to get sick since they don’t have that natural release valve. She also pointed out that women who have husbands with high-powered stressful jobs tend to get sicker more often because they are absorbing their partner’s negativity. The period is an excellent way to ‘de-charge negativity.” She recommended that older women who are no longer menstruating ‘de-charge’ by holding black rocks like tourmaline or jet, and chanting Om na ma shi va ya*. This chant balances all elements within the body (earth, water, fire, air, sky) as it de-charges negativity. She also suggested grounding with bare feet into the earth and to set the intention: “Release only that which is negative.” (There is concern that discharging into the earth can run down one’s entire battery and that’s why setting this intention is so essential.) Regardless of menstrual status, these rituals seem to make sense as every day practices to drain off the negativity we come across in normal life. Men can also use these methods to cleanse themselves of negativity**.
Thinking about this topic, it seems that the number one thing to do during ‘that time of the month’ is to set an intention! Without it, we miss the chance every thirty days to be rid of all that doesn’t serve us. What a gift to be rid of any arguments, sad feelings, misunderstandings, angers, fears, road rage, etc of the past month simply by bleeding and setting intention — or should I say: consciously bleeding. Most women moan and groan about their periods and don’t see it for the gift it is — the gift to renew! Now that I understand the vedic ideas about discharging negativity, I am even more interested in setting my intention at the first drop of blood, So, I guess, it is the sacred blood, even if saying it still makes me laugh!
- Elkhart Tolle, “The Power of Now”
- Rosalyn Bruyere, “Wheels of Light”
- Ann Myers, LA-based massage therapist & arcing light channel, firstname.lastname@example.org
*Na = the thumb = the earth element, Ma = index finger = the fire element, shi = middle finger = the sky element, va = ring finger = the water element, ya = pinky finger = the air element.
**another passage from “Wheels of Light” details the masculine cycle: “Men as well as women have this twenty-eight-day cycle. While the male cycle is not a physiological one, it is one of regeneration in much the same way as is a woman’s cycle. Culturally men are not taught to take advantage of that regeneration cycle.”