What is Self Love and how to experience it? There is a common misperception about Self Love as being a trait of vanity, selfishness and egoism. For ages, both religious thought and folk wisdom have been elevating self-sacrifice and selfless service as an ultimate virtue. But can we give anything to others if we feel ourselves empty inside? Can feelings of charity, compassion and love for the world be born in a heart which knows only of fear, guilt and insecurity? In her forthcoming Master Class workshop (August 22 and 23), Madhu Gajjala addresses these questions and invites us to examine the true value of self love and the enormous benefits it can bring to us and to those around.
Madhu’s spiritual journey is founded in her own experience of overcoming personal challenges through embracing meditation and self acceptance. A disciple of Brahmashri Patriji, she is committed to the “Five E’s”: Experimenting, Experiencing, Enlightening, Evolving and Enjoying. Therefore, her approach and guidance are practical rather than theoretical, staying clear of bookish knowledge or arcane ideas.
Madhu’s sessions can be best described as brimming with feminine energy and nurturing vibrations. She is open and sincere, loves to engage in conversation with the participants, and radiates with the same feelings of love, acceptance and compassion which she invites into our hearts. As an artist, she has first-hand experience of the power of self love, and how it is connected to the source of creativity. ’Once I calmed myself and made peace with myself,’ she says, ‘I started seeing beautiful colors and visions of geometrical structures in my meditation. Beauty flowed, and I started placing it into art form. If love is not with me, then it (the art) doesn’t come out.’
If we do not love ourselves, who else in this world will love us? If our cup is not full, how can we imagine to be able to provide caring support to others? Madhu firmly rejects the idea that selfless love should be prioritized. Without accepting ourselves first, there is nothing much we can give to others. The anger, the judgment, and the lack of acceptance we have for ourselves will simply reflect toward the outer world, and we will treat others the same way we treat ourselves. Once we accept ourselves as we are, and we understand that our mistakes are an integral part of our learning and growth, we are ready to embrace our dark side, to forgive ourselves, and truly progress on our path of spiritual evolution.
Madhu is a natural storyteller. The stories she shares have the quality of wisdom through simplicity. She uses them to help us connect with our inner child, the one who is innocent but wounded, and whose healing can bring miracles in our life. One remembers her stories long after hearing them. They become visuals and affirmations, whose transformative power can be amplified when evoked during meditation. The workshop is interactive and delightfully engaging. It covers the challenges, fears and the deep-rooted issues which block us from experiencing self love. It offers inspiration, tools and guidance which can be used to overcome these emotional and mental blocks.
In the spirit of the Pyramid Spiritual Societies Movement (PSSM), Madhu’s meditative practice is based on breath awareness. The workshop integrates several meditation sessions which are unique in the way that they integrate anapanasati with minimal verbal guidance and a beautifully soothing, singing bowls music. The latter is widely appreciated for its healing and harmonizing effects on the body, mind and the heart. Through the practice of self love, Madhu says, everything changes. Only in silence we can listen to our heart. In anapanasati meditation we let the breath be our companion and guru, who will take us to a place of stillness and calm. It awakens our awareness of our own beauty. It enables us connect with, and begin loving ourselves as we are. It frees us of limiting beliefs, fear and jealousy. It puts an end to feelings of self-loathe and low self-esteem. It makes us love our own smile, promises Madhu. It transforms our life. Forgive yourself and take responsibility for your own life, insists Madhu. The feelings of hurt, disappointment and victimhood can only pull you back into those dark corners you are already so familiar with. Accept your past, accept your choices and act in a way that shows you are in charge of your future. Do not let the voices of doubt shatter your trust in the power which is within you. You know who you are, and you need to act with confidence.
It thus comes at no surprise that positive affirmations take a central place in Madhu’s spiritual path. Drawing inspiration from the work of Louise Hay and Anita Moorjani, she firmly believes that each time one uses affirmations, those intentions of love, beauty, health and success manifest. The people, things and events in our lives which are not bringing any good to us will simply drop off.
Madhu’s messages come from Anahata, the heart - from that ‘unhurt, unstruck and unbeaten’ center in us. What is inside is also outside. As within so without. Once we are able to experience self love, we need no further persuasion to believe in the connection between loving ourselves and loving the world. Therefore, shower love and affection upon that Inner Self. You deserve love, but never seek for it outside yourself. Life is beautiful.
Watch Madhu Gajalla's Master Class here:
Self Love - Part1
Self Love - Part2
Madhu Gajalla is an artist and meditation teacher living in Germany. While living in Cairo, Egypt, in the year 2010 she got introduced to meditation, and experienced a profound personal transformation.
Meditation helped her unravel her creative side. In meditation she receives beautiful geometric patterns as creative visions. She paints these intricate designs on pots and recycled glass bottles. She developed a hand-painted art form with delicate detailing, which she named as madhukari art.
Maddhu has been a TEDx Talks GUC speaker. Through workshop sessions she facilitates meditation, art practice and healing. She is a co-founder of PSSM Germany.