Mermaid Tree

Exploring the complex, celebrating the simple

Top 10 Free iPhone Apps For the Spiritual September 3, 2009

Filed under: Author: Mermaid,Technology — Mermaid Tree @ 6:30 pm
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Spirituality and technology aren’t usually considered a perfect pair, but there are many applications available for the iPhone that allow you to carry around your metaphysical and spiritual practices right in your pocket.  Like many Americans, I am not so financially fortunate at the moment, so I decided to make a list of what, in my opinion, are the top ten FREE applications pertaining to a variety to topics in the metaphysical realm.  Without further ado, here they are…

 

10) Zippo Lighter  This realistic and customizable lighter reacts to movement and breath.  It even flickers.  Try meditating with it if you are in a place that doesn’t allow fire or simply turn it on to tap into some fire energy when you are away from the candles.

 

9) River  This application is relatively simple, but good for anyone who finds water soothing.  Where are my water signs at?  In basic mode, it consists of a rock background with flowing water that reacts to touch.  The speed of the flow, meditative music, and background can all be customized.  It can be used just to relax or to tap into water energy.  Either way, it is pretty cool.

 

8 ) Whole Foods Market  With this app, you can find the nearest Whole Foods Market and access the website.  What I love most is the recipe sections that allows you to search by course or ingredients.  Mmmmmm organic!

 

7) Natural Cures  This is basically what it sounds like:  the app is an encyclopedia of natural cures to many different ailments and offers a lot of information about each entry.  Very useful!

 

6) My Past Life Free  Ok, so I know what you’re thinking and no, this application is so not accurate, but it is kinda fun.  You just put in your birthday and it gives you a past life scenario.  The app itself doesn’t even claim to be valid, but it does give you something to think about and might serve as a great conversation starter.

 

5) Bible Verses Free  This is a great, eco-friendly, and free way to carry around your favorite Bible verses.  If you subscribe to the Christian faith or find spiritual guidance through the Bible, I suggest getting this handy app for your phone!

 

4) iTarot  Using more traditional-looking tarot cards, this app provides a Card of the Day and a Love Card of the Day to the user.  While it doesn’t do longer readings (there are tarot apps that will, but you have to pay for them), this can be a useful way to learn your cards and their meanings as well as plan your day.

 

3) dhoroscopes  For a more traditional way to get day-to-day guidance, I suggest the Daily Horoscope application.  There are several horoscope apps available, but I like this one for set-up and accuracy.  Along with a daily horoscope, it also gives you a percentage of fortune in several areas of your life (like Love, Work, Emotions, etc), and who was born on each day.  You can also customize your icon. 

 

2) Goddess Tarot Lite Version  Again, this app does not do full readings, but it does give one-card readings and allow you to browse the beautiful 78-card deck, explanations included.  For more choices and longer readings, you can pay extra to get the full version.

 

1) Yoga  There are many yoga applications for the iPhone, but this free one (whose picture consists of a woman in light clothing in the lotus position) is my complete favorite!  Not only does it come with a variety of instructional yoga videos, but it also includes many choices for relaxing music and guided meditations. 

 

So, that is my list.  I hope you find it helpful in converting your iPhone into a piece of spiritual technology. 

 

Did I miss your favorite?  Post it below with a short description for our readers!

 

The Joys of Nasal Breathing September 2, 2009

Filed under: Author: Mermaid,Breathing — Mermaid Tree @ 11:54 pm
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Yoga is something I say that I do, but in all honesty, I go through some looooong periods without actually doing it. Don’t judge! I know some of you do the same thing! So everytime I start to do yoga again, I am reminded of just how good I feel afterwards. This happened to me around three o’clock in the afternoon yesterday.

It isn’t just the stretching or balanced chakras, either. I throroughly enjoy the breathing part of yoga, which is actually a really big part if you do things correctly. I love how I feel when I actually make the effort and coordinate my inhales and my exhales with all of the moves. It makes all the difference and really helps me get into the zone, especially when I am only breathing through my nose. Focusing on my breathing allows me to clear my head and completely place all of my consciousness in the movements and their affects on my aura and chakras. If you haven’t ever tried yoga, and meditation isn’t quite doing what you need for your energy, I highly recommend trying it out. There are many free websites that show all the positions, from beginner to advanced, and there are usually yoga instruction books in the discounted section of the big bookstores. My personal favorite new find is the free yoga application on the iPhone. Not only does it include several videos that talk you through different routines, but it also has relaxing music and guided mediations! I admit, I haven’t tried all of the app yet, but so far I love what it has to offer. (For more info about the best spiritual apps on the iPhone, check back for the article later in the week!).

Breathing is useful in general meditation as well. About a month ago, my mother said she found it so amazing I was able to sit and meditate for extended periods of time without my mind clouding my experience with worries.  She said she has tried, but can’t seem to shut out that voice inside her head that dictates her to-do list.  I’m sure some of you may have the same issue.  I sometimes do too.  Forcing your consciousness to shift is a great way to remedy this, and there are several ways from which to choose.  Some advise lighting a candle and focusing on the flame, others suggest playing relaxing, soft music and allowing yourself to get lost in the tune.  I told her to try focusing on her breathing.  This isn’t a new concept, either–by any means. 

Many books and articles on meditation will tell you to try this, but because it is such a simple idea I think a lot of people forget how effective it can be.  You don’t need to buy a candle or a cd.  All you need is your body in some sort of comfortable position (either sitting down, standing up, or laying down–as long as your chakras along the spine are aligned) and then begin to focus on your breathing.  Try to breath through your nose (or you can inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth) and then gradually try to take slower, longer breaths.  Start slowly and relaxingly (is that a word?) counting the seconds and attempt to make your inhale, exhale, and the time inbetween breaths all equal.  Do not hold your breath and if at any time you become uncomfortable, have a headache, become dizzy, or anything else that is not part of your normal mediation experience starts happening STOP!  You should try to take longer breaths, but do not EVER practice a meditative or breathing exercise that dangers your health, creates pain, or makes you feel uncomfortable.  When done correctly, eventually people usually get so lost in counting their breaths that they stop thinking about the every day things and their minds are open to receive spiritual guidance or messages. 

So, there is why I love breathing, and not just for the normal, life-giving reasons.  When we breathe, we are taking in more than just the particles and chemicals around us.  We are taking in the energy around us and we should always be conscious of that. 

Hope this helps anyone out there who may be having difficulty meditating or just clearing their mind in general.  This feeling of peace and wellbeing also washes over me after just doing yoga.  So, whether you want to be active or just sit and receive from the universe, breathing is a great place to start!

 

Have a great technique for clearing your mind or meditating?  Share by commenting below!