Sacred Practices for Conscious Living
2nd edition paperback
When the first edition of Sacred Practices for Conscious Living was published in 1997, the world was a different place—and author Nancy Napier was a different woman.
Now, nearly two decades later, Napier is ready to share more of her own life story while returning to the subject she was first introduced to by her grandmother. As she comes again to the topic that pervades her life story, she focuses on a number of themes. She explains that once we recognize our place within collective consciousness—and focus on compassion and mindfulness—we can begin to experience more directly the interdependence and interconnection underlying our place in the universe…
Recreating Your Self
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For people who were emotionally and physically wounded as children, the journey from childhood to adulthood is a constant struggle with shame, self-criticism, and fear. This book shows these adult children of dysfunctional families how to use self-hypnosis to resolve the effects of abuse, to build a relationship with the child within and an inspiring one with the future self, and to give back “hand-me-downs” that are causing pain. The author’s stories and hypnotic strategies emphasize self-acceptance, healing old wounds, and getting on with life. Explicit exercises and self-hypnotic scripts, clearly explained and set within a framework that enables readers to make sense of their experiences, give people the tools they need to create a resilient, healthy self.
Getting Through the Day
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Early abuse of any kind—physical, verbal, sexual—can have a profound effect on adult life, especially when survivors struggle with dissociative responses, which can range from simple forgetfulness or “trancing out” when under stress to the switching seen in multiple personalities. While dissociation protects the child experiencing trauma, its continued influence can lead to psychological distress, interpersonal confusion and conflict, and revicitimization.
This book will enable adults who were hurt as children to learn new strategies to meet the demands of adult living—strategies that can make this moment, right now, more manageable. While focusing on the effects of dissociation, these strategies will be helpful to anyone who finds that unresolved childhood feelings are blocking life’s path.
Meditations and Rituals for Conscious Living
(co-authored with Carolyn Tricomi)
Meditations & Rituals for Conscious Living invites people to reflect on weekly meditations that allow them to deepen their understanding of themes and practices that bring spiritual experience to life. The process combines reflective meditation—returning to a theme each day for a month, with ritual—an end-of-month ceremony that gives the theme substance here and now. Each month offers a new theme with its accompanying ritual. Over the course of the year, these themes and practices provide a foundation for living each day consciously and with an open heart, creating a more alive and vital connection to the world, and to the sacred. The first week in January offers the following theme for daily reflective meditation: “Stillness is the ground of being from which all else emerges. It is within and behind every breath, every thought, every action. It is my starting point, my resting place, the home base to which I can return again and again.” The monthly themes are: January – Stillness; February – Wholeness; March – Compassion & Lovingkindness; April – Getting Grounded; May – Mindfulness; June – Gratitude & Generosity; July – Oneness; August – Intention; September – Creating Possibility & Synchronicity; October – Paradox; November – Active Surrender; December – Living Consciously.
Downloadable Guided Meditations:
Recreating Your Self:
The Child Within
Track 1: Discovering the Child in You
Track 2: Corrective Regression
This recording offers two guided meditations that draw on the metaphor of inner child parts, aspects of your inner life that represent unprocessed, unintegrated elements of your experience. You will meet and integrate the experiences held in inner child parts and access your optimal future self. During these guided meditations, you can learn to reach inside yourself at crucial moments with soothing responses, encouragement and support, and draw on your future self for strength and guidance. You also have an opportunity to enhance your present-day adult awareness and distinguish it from unresolved triggers and wounds from childhood. Learn how your present-day adult self can become the ally and loving presence you needed and deserved when you were young.
Improving Your Self Image
Track 1: Increasing Self-Validation
Track 2: Eliminating Negative Self-Concepts
This recording offers two guided meditations that invite you to discover limiting messages you received about you and your place in the world when growing up. These journeys involve parts of yourself that represent aspects of early experience that haven’t been integrated into your present-day adult understanding of yourself and your world. These parts of you encompass beliefs about yourself that hold you back or diminish your sense of self-esteem. You’ll enter a house of mirrors and have an opportunity to interact with yourself in positive and affirming ways. Then you’ll have n opportunity to discover and give back limiting messages that are actually “hand-me-downs” give to you by people around you when you were growing up. Free yourself to access a truer and more positive image of, and more deeply accepting relationship with, yourself.
Creating Your Optimal Life
Track 1: Fulfilling Your Best Potential
Track 2: Discovering Your Optimal Life Path
This recording offers two guided meditations that invite you to connect with the best you can be. In one journey, you’ll have an opportunity to experience the qualities of your own strength and potential through the metaphor and experience of a healthy, mature adult tree. You’ll also connect with the child part of you that holds your talent and capacity to express as the best you can be. In addition, you’ll meet your optimal future self, the part of you that embodies and expresses your best potential. In meeting your optimal future self, you’ll connect with a felt-sense experience that can guide you on your journey into becoming all you have the potential to be. You’ll also have an opportunity to experience what it feels like to live as your optimal future self.
Bonding With the Infant
Track 1: Discovering the Infant in You
Track 2: Soothing the Infant
This recording offers two guided meditations that invite you to connect with the child part of you that holds the seed of your inherent strength and potential. In one journey, you’ll experience a garden where you can explore the seeds of possibility inherent in the infant in you—potential that has been with you from the beginning, and that you can enliven and bring into your present-day life. You’ll also have an opportunity to travel across time to meet yourself on the first day of your life and convey a loving welcome to this part of you. This welcome offers you the experience of having a right to be her, and allows your present-day self to become an ongoing source of support and soothing for the infant part of you. You are the most important person in the life of inner child parts and, here, you can explore how to develop an active and dynamic and nurturing relationship with a part of you that holds your deepest potential.
The Power of Shame
Track 1: Discovering Sources of Shame
Track 2: Healing the Shamed Child Within
This recording offers two guided meditations that invite you heal unresolved shame. Shame diminishes when it is brought into the light of day and shared with someone you trust. In the first journey, you’ll have an opportunity to bring into the open and share what generates your shame with your optimal future self. This is the part of you that has already healed the discomfort and pain of whatever shame you may feel today. Your future self is a source of compassionate presence and deepened self-acceptance, and can support you on your healing journey. You’ll also have an opportunity to intervene on behalf of your childhood self in situations that created shame when you were growing up. Your present-day adult self can become a dynamic and willing source of loving and accepting presence for the shamed child in you. With these journeys, you can engage a powerful journey of healing into a more comfortable and confident relationship with yourself.
Getting Through the Day:
Track 1: Your Present-Day Observer
Track 2: Mindfulness Meditation
This recording offers you two ways to enhance your mindfulness practice and to support being able to move through daily life experiences with greater ease and equanimity. In one guided meditation, you’ll have an opportunity to strengthen the experience of your present-day observer, the part of your awareness that is able to notice what’s happening in and around you without being swept away by it. With a strong present-day observer, you can recenter yourself more easily and effectively when the present moment brings unexpected challenges. Then, in the second guided meditation, you’ll have an opportunity to experience a basic form of mindfulness meditation. It invites you to become more deeply aware of whatever moves through your experience in the present moment and then, using the breath as a focus of awareness, to gently return to the breath whenever you discover your mind has wandered.
Your Future Self
Track 1: Accessing New Body States
Track 2: Walking in the Footsteps of Your Future Self
This recording offers two guided meditations that give you an opportunity for you to connect with your optimal future self, the part of you that has already healed what you seek to heal, already made the changes you seek to make, already moved beyond where you may feel stuck. In one journey, you’ll have a chance to feel, in your physical body, the way your future self feels in his or her body. What the body learns, the psyche also learns. Connecting with your future self in this way offers you a “dress rehearsal” for ways of being—physically and psychologically—that encompass what you desire in your current healing process. In the second journey, you’ll have an opportunity to choose a particular issue you’d like to heal, change, or develop and then to walk in the footsteps of your future self, the part of you that has already achieved the outcomes you seek. In this journey, you’ll have another opportunity to experience how it feels to be the person who has achieved these outcomes.
Your Shadow Side
Track 1: Finding Your Disowned Parts
Track 2: Your Golden Shadow
This recording offers two guided meditations that invite you to discover disowned parts of yourself that contain life energy and qualities you need in order to be your whole self. The shadow side of you contains aspects of you that you had to push away or hide when you were young, and they include both skillful and unskillful elements. In one journey, you’ll have an opportunity to connect with disowned parts of you that cause you discomfort, that you may label “negative”. In fact, these parts of you represent important sources of awareness and energy. To reclaim them gives you back qualities you need to be a whole person and allow you to be more authentic, trustworthy and transparent. In the second journey, you’ll have an opportunity to discover and reclaim positive aspects of yourself you had to hide from others. The golden shadow represents disowned talents, strength and other qualities that may not have been acceptable to people important in your life when you were young. Now, they add to your wholeness and to your capacity to express your talents as fully as you choose.
Sacred Practices for Conscious Living:
Track 1: Becoming the Sky—A Mindfulness Meditation
Track 2: Sky Writing
This recording offers two guided meditations that support your capacity to move through life experiences with greater ease and equanimity. In the first meditation, you have an opportunity to discover the spaciousness of open, uncluttered awareness, drawing on the metaphor of being the sky. You will practice allowing thoughts, feelings, sensations and impulses to move through you as easily as clouds move through the sky. As you develop the capacity to shift to a spacious state of mind, you enhance your ability to recenter yourself, to find the humor in difficult situations, and to experience a greater sense of internal equilibrium. In the second journey, you have an opportunity to practice letting go of specific responses and reactions that grip you or carry you away with them. By allowing these thoughts, feelings, sensations and impulses to arise, move through and dissolve, you invite yourself back into the present moment with a gentle, steady awareness.
Saying “Yes” to Your Future:
Track 1: Fork in the Road
Track 2: Saying ‘Yes’ to Your Future Self
This recording offers two guided meditations to bring your future potential into the present. By connecting with your optimal future self, and expressing your willingness to be all you can be, you call to yourself the body-mind being of the part of you that has already achieved outcomes you seek in your present life. In the first journey, you have an opportunity to explore and release rules and prohibitions from the past that may have held you back, preventing you from achieving all you have the capacity to create in your life. You also have an opportunity to leave behind old messages and give yourself permission to blossom. In the second journey, you can access your optimal future self and say ‘yes’ to all this part of you has brought into being. As with every opportunity to connect with your future, you give yourself the gift of allowing your body to experience the sensations of being this wiser, more evolved you, even as you allow your psyche to get a glimpse of the state of body-mind being you have when you allow yourself to become all you can be.