Yoga is Union of our individual self with the larger Cosmic self. Yoga is Balance, reaching a point of aware acceptance. And we attain it through our physical self or the body.
Breathing or Pranayama, Organized and structured physical postures called Asanas, Deep aware relaxation or Yoga nidra, Mantra Chanting, Meditation, these form the essential components of Yogic practice.
Swami Satchidananda lineage I come from teaches this as a easy, compact, and best practice of Yoga and highly advises that Yoga is practised with no expectations or competitiveness.
Yoga in Pop culture is more about the Body and getting ourselves to do those head stands, hand stands, twists, turns and all those postures that look impossible, the oh-so-tight spandex apparel line, green shakes, commercially capitalizing the timeless practice. A closer look and subtle observation will help us see the truth: it’s the breath and higher energies that move the body.
Pic courtesy- Theformfitness
Now on to breath: What is the breath. Science tells us we inhale Oxygen and exhale Carbondioxide. Well, there is more to breath, we inhale the Life force known as Prana along with O2. In a future post I will tell you in detail about Prana.
We get the stated 8 hours or say few more hours extra of sleep yet feel incomplete, restless, rested-less, now let’s take a moment to understand that sleep does not mean we are relaxed or have allowed our body to rest, here emerges the Yoga nidra, the deep complete relaxation, which allows us to experience the subtle parts of our self.
Mantra chanting is affirming ourself into a vibration of Positivity to help our practice be pure, vital, complete. Om, the primordial Pranava mantra containing within itself the three sounds Aa, Uu, Mm which most of us are aware is our free ticket to higher realms.
Meditation is witnessing our true self the real peaceful self within and gathering the joy within and charging ourselves to live life more mindfully, happily, joyously with purpose.
Yoga as well is a process of re-remembering that we are That, the Divine self, experiencing life as the limited self that we assume we are!
More to come … Om!