by Ashleigh Beyer

More and more I want to bring reminders of my meditation practice with me wherever I go. I might have a rock in my pocket, I keep a mala in my car and I often haul my journal or an inspiring book with me. Artisan Felts, made by Kundalini Yoga Teacher, Jiwan Shakti, in Taos, New Mexico, are perfect and practical Sacred objects to bring with you wherever you go.

The combination of the wool that these Sacred Felts are made of and the love that is put into them makes them truly a high vibe treat to uplift your practice and to ground it, especially while you’re traveling.

“Wool is a superior fiber to use in your meditation, it insulates and protects your electromagnetic field and it calms your heart rate. It’s hypo-allergenic and it breathes,” says Jiwan Shakti.

The Felts are a lovely alternative to using sheepskins for practice. “Yogi Bhajan explained that the use a sheepskin is nonviolent when it is “a by-product and properly cured.” And in this way, there is no waste,” Jiwan Shakti says, “but that part of the teaching has been getting lost at the same time the booming industry produces skins just for skins and home décor, and while chemicals like chromium and arsenic are used to tan the hide, then dumped into the Earth.”

Jiwan Shakti has received great response from Yogis since 2006, when she started her business, “People are grateful to have something in alignment with their yogic values.” In the wool industry, “the animals are left alive, they’re just getting a haircut. These facts point to another important point: the felts are biodegradable. “It’s Animal and Earth loving,” Jiwan Shakti adds. According to Wool Revolution, an excellent source on all matters related to wool, states “buying wool supports raising sheep for their fleece rather than food.”Jiwan Shakti explains, “In the wool I use, you’ll often see pieces of earthen material; it hasn’t been carbon washed.” This leaves the material very soft, full of lanolin and its natural fibers.” Before spending time with Jiwan Shakti’s Sacred Felts, I thought of wool as itchy, but these are comfortable and cozy. For this reason, Artisan Felts creates a lot of custom Felts for babies, too!

On a purely practical level, the Sacred Felts are lightweight, and they pack up small. They can easily be washed in a front loading machine on cold, and popped in the drier for a few minutes! They are dense and strong and will last you a long time!

Another ingredient woven into these Sacred Felts is gratitude, “I just think it’s a tremendous blessing to be able to be around the benefits of the wool each day and to be in the position to be making sacred spaces for people to enjoy their Sadhana and to be a part of people’s spiritual living in such a foundational way,” Jiwan Shakti’s joy is clear in her voice. “I feel really grateful to be making sacred objects for sacred times.”

I can’t help but notice the word “felt” is the same as the past tense of “to feel.” Yogis deeply committed to their Sadhana know a side-effect is growing sensitivity. Jiwan Shakti’s feelings of love, gratitude and joy for the animals, the Earth and her calling are felt, and from a sensitive Yogi’s perspective, much appreciated.

Sacred Seats
“Puro”/“Pure White” and “Stripes,” white except for one stripe. Colors are available in the colors of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue. “Stripes” are part of Artisan Felts “Enchanted Collection,” a nod to the state where they’re made, New Mexico, the Land of Enchantment. Sacred Seats have a variety of uses and can very easily be rolled up and transported, and/or used in the car or the airplane, wherever you’re sitting to remind “it’s all a meditation.” Ideal for a teacher on the go! $150.

Shakti Mats “Puro”/“Pure White” and are ideal for your active Kundalini Yoga practice, they are approximately 24×40-42 inches and support the whole length of your spine, when you’re laying down. $200.

Yoga Felts come in “Puro”/“Pure White” and are approximately 24-28”x70”, essentially the size of a traditional yoga mat. The Yoga Felt is a perfect overlay for a massage table, and because of wool’s calming and protecting effect, it will do wonders to support the healing of the client and the practitioner. Also great for Kundalini Yoga, Gong baths, Sat Nam Rasayan and other healing practices. $300