In studying the Yamas and Niyamas of Yoga I find great importance to the idea of Ethics. Yamas and Niyamas are all about how you treat the world around and you and how you treat yourself.
"Ethics is the glue that binds earth to Heaven. One cannot serve two masters. The only way a human being can reconcile the paradox of the demands of earth and soul is through the observation of ethical principles." From Iyengar's Light on Life
I am a person who relies on ethics in life. I find it important establishing what my limits are and how I treat the world around me. I am constantly checking and re-checking myself. Where is the boundary of right and wrong and how close do I allow myself to be to it? Does this boundary still work for me? Do I need to change my limits?
I also find that being so ethical ties me very closely to the earth. This can sometimes be a heavy and burdensome. I'm by nature and over-thinker. So, I have this breathing exercise for meditation in which I imagine I am inhaling in heaven -not religious heaven but more like the universe, the air and sky that is infinite. And on the exhale I imagine rooting in to the earth.
And with this exercise I think about this Heaven and Earth thing and what lies between...us, people. Some of use are more Heaven oriented -have you ever met someone who is so up in the clouds? Flighty? Free spirited? And then there are Earthy types...myself -very grounded and realistic, easily brought down. There is this great middle path that has a little of both of these concepts. I like this breathing exercise because I'm overly grounded it helps me to breath in the heavens and take something in that is lighter. I feel lifted and freer. For my flighty heaven people, the rooting and grounding helps balance them out as well.