A Practical Guide to Healing Your Body, Mind, and Spirit: 7 Spiritual Laws of Yoga by Deepak Chopra

A Practical Guide to Healing Your Body, Mind, and Spirit: 7 Spiritual Laws of Yoga by Deepak Chopra the seven spiritual laws of yoga a
practical guide to healing body mind and spirit by Deepak Chopra MD and David
Simon MD narrated by Tom zinger le preface the four yoga’s often one goes
for one thing and finds another neem Karoli Baba the word yoga is
related to the English word yoke Yoga is the union of body mind and spirit
the union of your individuality with the divine intelligence that orchestrates
the universe yoga is a state of being in which the elements and forces that
comprise your biological organism are in harmonious interaction with the elements
of the cosmos established in this state you will experience enhanced emotional
psychological and spiritual well-being and will increasingly notice the
spontaneous fulfillment of your desires in yoga in union with spirit your
desires and the desires of nature are one as you participate in the process of
creativity along with the infinite being your worries fall away and you feel a
sense of light heartedness and joy there is a spontaneous blossoming of intuition
insight imagination creativity meaning and purpose you make correct choices
that benefit not only you but also everyone affected by your choices when
in the book of Matthew Jesus says my yoke is easy and my burden is light he
is expressing the core principle of yoga his intelligence is aligned with cosmic
intelligence his will with divine will traditionally there are four forms of
yoga jaan bhakti karma and Raja Yan Yoga is the yoga of understanding the yoga of
understanding is also the yoga of science science is after all the
knowledge of nature’s laws the laws of nature are God’s thoughts science is God
explaining God to God through human nervous system science is not an enemy
of spiritual awakening but rather a potentially helpful friend today’s
science reveals to us the mysterious non-local domain where everything is
instantly correlated with everything else
where time-space matter energy and information resolved into a field of
pure potentiality this is the realm with the immeasurable potential of all that
was all that is and all that will be manifests and differentiates into the
seer and the scenery the observer and the observed that knower and the known
the yoga of understanding has been referred to in the apana shots as the
razor’s edge and we are cautioned to tread carefully on this path as we gain
understanding of the laws of nature we run the risk of arrogance arrogance
inflates the ego and the ego overshadows the spirit the original sincere quest
for discovery leads to an alienation from the very source with which intimacy
was sought truly great scientists are known for their humility for even as
they explore and unravel the secrets of the unknown the unknown looms larger and
becomes ever more mysterious humility leads to wonder which leads to innocence
the return of innocence invites us to enter the luminous mystery of life and
surrender to it yoga of knowledge can be a wonderful path if we are mature enough
to understand that there are seductive temptations that may entrap us for a
while in diversions of the intellect the second Yoga is bhakti the yoga of love
and devotion bhakti is love of God but also the expression and blossoming of
love in all your relationships the divine light of God resides in all that
is alive or for that matter even at which we consider inanimate through our
relationships with others we discover our higher self as we embark on this
journey we may go through stages of attraction infatuation communion
intimacy surrender passion and ecstasy until ultimately we once again arrive at
the source of love and the source of life the yoga of love is a wonderful
path but we must not confuse love with self absorption self-importance or
self-pity if you pay attention to love think about love express love respond to
gestures of love and make love the basis for all your choices then you are
practicing bhakti-yoga the yoga of love the third yoga is referred to as Karma
Yoga the ultimate expression of karma yoga is the recognition that all action
belongs to the Supreme Being when you have an inner attitude that all your
actions come from God and belong to God you are a karma yogi the inner dialogue
of a karma yogi is I am an instrument of the eternal infinite being every breath
of mine every act of mind is a divine movement of the infinite my thoughts and
actions come from the infinite and return to the infinite true practice of
karma yoga leads to spontaneous detachment from outcome and one-pointed
focused mindfulness as you perform your actions action from this level of
consciousness is not binding rather it liberates you and enables you
spontaneously to recognize that you are an eternal being on a cosmic journey
karma Yogi’s have no anxiety because they have no worry the karma yogi knows
that God is performing the action and takes care of the results the fourth
yoga is known as Raja yoga the main subject of this book Raja Yoga is
frequently referred to as the Royal path to yoga because it is rich and abundant
in knowledge and experience Raja Yoga can be practiced by anyone with a little
bit of training Raja Yoga is the path of Union through practices that take your
awareness inward the essence of Raja Yoga is an integration of body mind and
soul through procedures that enhance mind-body coordination these techniques
awaken poise Grace strength and the development of centered awareness even
in the midst of chaos and turmoil they improve your physical health and your
mental clarity while heightening your senses of perception as a consequence of
these practices you are able to experience increased vitality along with
better mental and physical capacity Raja Yogi’s have greater enjoyment of life
while enthusiasm and inspiration become an everyday experience Raja yoga helps
you practice the other yoga’s with greater ease effortlessness enjoy when
you feel physically vital emotionally stable and psychologically centered your
ability and desire to love and express authentic compassion expand you become
more capable of surrendering to the will of God and begin a never-ending journey
of knowledge for those who feel that God is difficult to find we want to
encourage you to begin practicing the principles in this book it will discover
that God is not differ to find God is impossible to avoid for
there is nowhere that God is not introduction the source from which the
world and the mind rise and into which they set is termed reality which does
not rise nor does it subside ramana maharishi I am NOT in the world the
world is in me this daring declaration of ancient Yogi’s gave expression to the
perennial truth that the material universe our physical bodies and the
thoughts that occupy our minds are expressions of an underlying unbounded
field of consciousness the eye in the bold statement reflects a transformation
in the internal reference of the seeker from skin and capsulated ego to expanded
spirit these original explorers of consciousness charted a course for us to
follow the path of yoga this is the path we follow we are deeply gratified by the
expanding acceptance in the West of the philosophy and practices usually
attributed to the East through our books lectures and workshops we have been
sharing our understanding and experience of the Vedic and yogic wisdom traditions
because we believe that this knowledge has universal value just as no one would
argue that gravity applies only to England because Sir Isaac Newton was
British or that Einstein’s theory of relativity was relevant only in Germany
we suggest that the profound insights gained through yoga are valuable for
every person living on this planet regardless of age gender or cultural
inheritance the principles of yoga are not limited by time or space as the
human inhabitants of our world increasingly recognize themselves as
members of a global village ideas that were rejected by all but a few wild
inner space explorers thirty years ago are now resonating in our collective
awareness just a few heartbeats back the mention of yoga and meditation is
essential components of a healthy lifestyle led to skepticism and even
ridicule but concepts that add genuine value to life eventually find their way
into the light of human consciousness paraphrasing the great German
philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer every great idea goes through three phases
before it is accepted and the first it is rejected in the second it is
and in the third it is held to be self-evident the value that yoga brings
to body mind and spirit is becoming increasingly obvious to a critical mass
of people in North America and around the world our relationship with yoga
spans more than three decades we learned early in our spiritual journey the value
of alternating asanas yoga poses pranayama breathing exercises and
meditation to stabilize awareness while spending extended time in silence in
seduction of spirit our intensive meditation course held twice yearly at
the Chopra Center we repeatedly see the benefits that conscious movement brings
to our guests when their attention is directed inward for hours each day as a
result of our personal experience and that of thousands of course participants
this book emerged the information and practices presented in this book provide
you with a path to expand your awareness of the relationship between your
individuality and your world our planet is in need of healing and transformation
with exploding population growth the human footprint on earth looms larger
every day people who understand the relationship between individual and
collective choices cannot ignore the issues of social justice economic
disparities ecological disruption and cultural conflicts at times the
challenges of our age can seem overwhelming and beyond the influence of
individual attention we believe however that each of us has an opportunity to
contribute to a better world through the very personal choices we make on daily
basis through the seven spiritual laws of yoga program you will enhance the
integration between your body and mind and develop the practice of maintaining
balance and flexibility in the midst of challenge you will gain increased access
to your creativity and intuition and become aware of how your individual
thoughts words and actions influence and are influenced by your environment as a
result of this awareness you will contribute to the collective awakening
of world consciousness all of our work through the Chopra Center has been based
upon the core principle that consciousness is the primary force in
the universe consciousness gives rise to thought thought gives rise to action all
change begins with awareness awareness of the current situation awareness of
the potential for something greater and awareness of the unlimited
creativity that exists within each of us to catalyze the transformation we want
to see for ourselves and for generations to follow not long ago it seemed
fanciful that public smoking would be restricted and tobacco companies would
sponsor public service ads that discourage smoking but this shift in
awareness occurred when a critical mass of people decided they would no longer
tolerate a behavior that harmed many while benefiting a few in a similar way
we anticipate that as more people shift their inner attitude from what’s in it
for me to how can I help we will see an expanding sense of both individual and
collective responsibility for the choices that are guiding the future of
our planet we are hopeful that as a result of the changes you experienced
through the practice of the seven spiritual laws of yoga program you will
be unable to resist the urge to contribute to the healing and
transformation of humanity and the world the initial response to the seven
spiritual laws of yoga program has been so enthusiastic that we have developed a
yoga training program for those interested in bringing this knowledge in
practice to their communities from novices to experienced yoga teachers
people around the world are learning to teach others the principles and
technology that enable them to apply the deep wisdom of yoga to daily life if
after experiencing for yourself the transformational power of this program
you have the desire to share this knowledge with others we welcome your
participation together we can remind the members of our global family that each
of us has the ability to contribute to peace and harmony in the world by
awakening these qualities within with love
deepak and david part 1 the philosophy of yoga 1 Yoga is Union without
self-knowledge we cannot go beyond the mind Jiddu Krishnamurti the
proliferation of yoga classes and yoga centers throughout the Western world is
a tribute to yoga’s indisputable power to enliven physical well-being in cities
across North America Europe and Australia yoga studios offer students a
vast range of styles and techniques designed to enhance fitness yoga
foster’s can increase your flexibility strengthen your muscles improve your
posture and enhance your circulation athletic programs from gymnastics to
football now incorporate yoga for its systematic approach to stretching
muscles tendons and joints fitness enthusiasts are often pleasantly
surprised by how quickly the addition of yoga postures to a workout routine can
improve tone and posture if the practice of yoga provided only these physical
benefits it would fully justify its place in our lives
however at its core Yoga is much more than a system of physical fitness
it is a science of balanced living a path for realizing full human potential
in these tumultuous times yoga provides an anchor to a quieter domain of life
enabling people living in a modern technological world to stay connected to
their natural humanity Yoga offers the promise of remaining centered in the
midst of turbulence the essential purpose of yoga is the integration of
all the layers of life environmental physical emotional psychological and
spiritual the word yoga is derived from the sanskrit root
ucch which means to unite it is related to the English word yoke a farmer yoking
two oxen to pull his plough is performing an action that hints at the
essence of a spiritual experience at its core Yoga means Union the union of body
mind and soul the union of the ego in the spirit the union of the mundane and
the divine the seven spiritual laws in action the seven spiritual laws of yoga
program will raise your level of physical vitality clear emotional
blockages from your heart and awaken your joyfulness and enthusiasm for life
since its release in 1994 Deepak’s book the seven spiritual laws of success has
improved the lives of millions of listeners around the world through seven
easily understood principles the seven spiritual laws of success proclaims that
harmony happiness and abundance are available to anyone willing to embrace a
consciousness based approach to life our yoga program brings the seven laws into
action through the principles and techniques of a consciousness based
practice we celebrate the rising popularity of
yoga in the Western world even if your primary motivation for taking a yoga
class is to lose weight or to develop a more muscular body you cannot escape the
subtler benefits of enhanced vitality and a noticeable reduction in your
stress level Yoga is a practical system to awaken human potential it does not
require you to believe in a set of principles in order to reap its benefits
on the contrary the regular practice of yoga naturally generates a healthy
belief system based on your direct experience of the world through a more
flexible nervous system perform yoga poses on a regular basis and your mind
and emotions will change yoga is a central component of the comprehensive
system of Indian philosophy known as Vedic science with roots in the Indus
Valley Civilisation going back over 5000 years the vedas represent the poetic
cognitions of enlightened sages and the origins of the universe and the
evolution of life the english word wisdom traces its origins to the
primitive germanic word vid meaning to know vid in turn is derived from the
sanskrit word Veda meaning external knowledge the Vedas are the expression
of perennial wisdom and yoga is the practical aspect of Vedic science Yoga
is a system through which human beings can directly access the wisdom of life
practitioners of yoga Yogi’s are dynamic and creative forces for positive change
a yogi knows that his mind and body are in the ever-changing world but his
essence his soul resides in a dimension that is beyond change the seventh
spiritual laws of yoga program is designed for those who wish to take
their yoga practice to a deeper level using their bodies to access more
expanded levels of their minds this is the time-honored value of yoga to
cultivate an inner state of centered awareness that cannot be disturbed by
the inevitable turmoil of life layers of life people are complex and multifaceted
beings with many rich layers although the Western scientific model of
a person tends to reflect the Newtonian mechanistic view of life that sees
people as primarily physical entities biological machines that have learned to
think despite the fact that all a century ago the discoveries of quantum
physics revealed that the material model of life is incomplete
modern medicine and physiology continue to view people as primarily composed of
molecules according to this predominantly physical perspective if
you are feeling depressed it is not because you are harboring anger and
resentment over the affair your spouse had with your best friend rather it is
the result of inadequate levels of serotonin in your brain if you simply
enhance the level of this neurotransmitter molecule for the
appropriate selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor your depression will vanish if
your blood pressure is elevated it is not the consequence of constant strain
with your demanding boss rather it is the result of excessive levels of the
chemical angiotensin take an angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor and your
blood pressure will normalize if you have trouble sleeping at night your
excessive credit card debt is not to blame your brain is simply not producing
sufficient concentrations of gamma amino butyric acid any number of medications
will correct this deficiency and you will sleep as soundly as a baby
this material approach can be remarkably effective in the short-term relief of
symptoms unfortunately it rarely promotes a
deeper understanding of life it rarely leads to healing and transformation and
the side effects of medications are often limiting expanding the vision of
life beyond a purely biochemical perspective Yoga reminds us that we live
life simultaneously on many levels the essence of yoga is to find the unity in
the diversity of our multidimensionality throughout the centuries great yoga
teachers have awakened their contemporaries to the fascinating
paradox that although to the mind and senses the world is an ever-changing
experience from the perspective of spirit the infinite diversity of forms
and phenomena is simply the disguise of an underlying non changing reality Adi
Shankara the sage of sages one of the most influential teachers of the
philosophy of yoga and Veda was the ninth century sage Adi Shankara known as
the greatest revivalist of Vedic science he elegantly elaborated the layers of
life that masked the essential spiritual self born in ad
five Shankara is said to have been fluent in Sanskrit by the age of one and
to have mastered all sacred literature by age eight he began writing his own
commentaries on the Vedas by age 15 and was recognized as the leading authority
on yoga by the time he turned 20 he established seats of learning throughout
India with one goal in mind to help human beings overcome their suffering
through the wisdom of life his approach to truth was called Advaita meaning
non-dualism the essence of Shankar is teaching is that one underlying field of
intelligence manifests as the multiplicity of forms and phenomena that
we call the physical universe it is helpful to recognize the disguises
consciousness Dawn’s so you can see through to the underlying reality this
is the great game of hide-and-seek that spirit plays with us
the non-local field of awareness gives rise to the sensory world that
overshadows our experience of the underlying unity at some point we
recognize that the world of sensations alone cannot bring us genuine peace or
happiness so we begin our journey of uncovering the layers that mask our
essential unbounded nature Shankara calls these various layers coches
meaning coverings and he categorized them into three primary divisions a
physical body a subtle body and a causal body we can also say body mind and soul
let’s explore each of these primary divisions and there are three secondary
layers the physical body the field of molecules within your physical domain
you have an extended body a personal body and an energetic body your extended
body is the environment containing the never-ending supply of energy and
information that is available to you every sound sensation sight flavor and
aroma you ingest from the environment influences your body and mind although
your senses may tell you otherwise there is no distinct boundary between your
personal and extended bodies which are in constant and dynamic exchange each
breath that you inhale and exhale is a reminder of the continuous conversation
taking place between your physical body and your environment the layers of life
this recognition requires you to take responsibility
what is happening in your environment as a yogi you are an environmentalist
because you recognize that the rivers flowing through the valleys and those
flowing through your veins are intimately related the breath of an
old-growth forest and your most recent breath are inextricably intertwined the
quality of the soil in which your food is raised is directly connected to the
health of your tissues and organs your environment is your extended body you
are in separately interwoven with your ecosystem of course you do have a
personal body that consists of the molecules that temporarily comprise your
cells tissues and organs we say temporarily because although it appears
that your body is solid and constant it actually is continuously transforming
scientific studies using radioisotope tracings convincingly show that 98% of
the 10 trillion quadrillion 10 to the 28th atoms in your body are replaced
annually your stomach lining recreates itself about every 5 days your skin is
made anew every month and your liver cells turn over every 6 weeks although
your body appears to be fixed and stable it is continually metamorphose in the
vast majority of the cells in your body are derived from the food you eat
recognizing this Shankara named the physical body annamaya kosha meaning the
covering made of food to create and maintain a healthy body
the Yogi’s pay attention to the food they consume minimizing the toxicity
they ingest while maximizing the nourishment they receive certain foods
are said to be particularly conducive to a yogic lifestyle these foods are known
as sattvic which means they contribute to the purity of the body the foremost
sattvic foods revered by Yogi’s are almonds honey milk and ghee clarified
butter getting a daily dose of these foods benefits the body mind and soul of
a person dedicated to creating greater mind-body integration when acknowledging
the relationship between your personal and extended bodies be certain to
consume only organic dairy products Chikara called the third layer of the
physical body pranamaya kosha meaning the sheath made of vital energy there is
a difference between the cells of a corpse and the cells of a vibrant living
beam this organizing principle that breathes life into biochemicals is
called prana there are five seats of prana in the body localized in the head
throat heart stomach and pelvis these centres of movement govern the flow of
lifeforce throughout the body when prana is moving freely throughout
the cells and tissues vitality and creativity are abundant yogic breathing
exercises known as pranayama techniques are designed to awaken and purify the
vital energy layer of the body we’ll be exploring these powerful approaches in
chapter 4 the subtle body the mind field most people identify themselves with
their mind intellect and ego which are the components of the subtle body the
17th century philosopher Rene Descartes is famous for his statement cachito ergo
sum meaning I think therefore I am people continue to believe that they are
their minds but Shankara encourages us to recognize that the components of our
subtle body are simply coverings of the soul according to this framework the
mind is the repository of sensory impressions when you hear a sound feel a
sensation see a sight taste a flavor or smell of fragrance the sensory
experience registers in your consciousness at a level of your being
called mono Maya kosha the mind cycles through different states of
consciousness and your sensory experiences change with these changing
states the impressions that enter your awareness during a waking state are
different from those generated during dreaming Yoga reminds us that reality is
different in different states of consciousness different filters of the
mind layer the second layer of the subtle body is the intellect known as
Buddha Maya kosha this is the aspect of mind that
discriminates whether you are trying to decide what kind of toothpaste to
purchase which partner to choose or what house to buy your intellect is at work
attempting to calculate the advantages and disadvantages of every choice you
make this layer integrates information based upon your beliefs and feelings to
come to a decision according to yoga the ultimate purpose
of this intellectual layer is to distinguish the real from the unreal the
real is that which cannot be lost whereas the unreal is anything that has
a beginning into it knowing the difference is the
essence of yoga the third layer of the subtle body is the ego the ego is known
in yoga as a Han Cara which means the I former according to Shankara the ego is
that aspect of your being that identifies with the positions and
possessions of your life it is ultimately your self-image the way you
want to reject who you are to yourself and to the world the ego is the boundary
maker that attempts to assert ownership through the concepts of I me my and mine
the ego seeks security through control and often has a deep-seated need for
approval most emotional pain is the result of your ego being offended
because something that it believed it had control over was actually outside
your jurisdiction it is easy to become lost in the subtle body with this
attachments to roles relationships and objects but Shankara encourages us to go
deeper letting go of the body and letting go of the mind open the
possibility of experiencing an aspect of your being that is beyond your usual
limitations this is the realm of spirit which Shankara called the causal body
the causal body the field of pure potentiality
according to yoga underlying the field of molecules we call the physical body
and the field of thoughts called the subtle body is a realm of life known as
the causal body or the domain of spirit although we cannot perceive or measure
this sphere of life it gives rise to our thoughts feelings dreams desires and
memories as well as to the molecules that make up our bodies and the material
world like the physical body and the subtle body the causal body has three
layers the personal domain of spirit is the layer where the seeds of memories
and desires are sown according to Shankara each person arrives on this
planet with a specific purpose and a unique set of talents given the right
environment the seeds sprout and you become capable of expressing your gifts
in the world although the modern material model of life suggests that
their genes determine people’s talents we only have to look at identical twins
to realize that the same molecular structure does not determine an
individual’s nature pregnant mothers report that even
the womb different babies express different tendencies according to
Shankara every individual has a personal soul with its unique memories and
desires these memories and desires guide the course of your life when you nurture
the seeds of your innate gifts with your attention and intention they sprout and
your personal soul finds fulfillment the second sheath of the causal body is the
collective domain this realm impels you to live a life of mythic proportions the
gods and goddesses that reside in the collective domain within your soul have
one desire to express their creative power through you each of us is on a
heroic journey in search of the Holy Grail along the way obstacles and
challenges arise forcing us to reach deeper into our being these collective
aspirations are translated into the archetypal stories that people have been
telling one another for millennia for example we learn the risks
associated with the arrogance of power through the tragic story of Icarus
ignoring the advice of his father he flew too close to the Sun melted his wax
and wings and crashed into the ocean if Bill Clinton or Martha Stewart had
heeded the wisdom resonating in their collective domain they might have
avoided their foretold painful outcomes a woman who closes down when a
relationship becomes too intimate is living the myth of Daphne who
overwhelmed by the pursuit of Apollo is transformed into a laurel tree a young
man seeking to re-establish a formally successful family business is reenacting
the story of jason and the argonauts the stories unfolding in our lives and those
around us are perennial stories the mythic gods and goddesses are alive and
well within our collective domain we can see the expression of Queen Juno in the
powerful women of our era Margaret Thatcher Golda Meir Hillary Clinton the
goddess of nature diana shows her modern face through Jane Goodall and Julia
butterfly Hill Venus made her most direct appearance via Marilyn Monroe
while Dionysius the god of intoxication and excess has a tendency to show up in
the stream of people who require stays at the Betty Ford Clinic you are a
living story become aware of the stories you tell about yourself in your world
participate consciously in the writing of the next chapter of your life
Yoga encourages you to expand your sense of self to embrace the collective domain
of your soul this is where the deepest aspirations of humanity find fulfilment
through the perennial stories we tell ourselves and our children according to
Shankara the deepest aspect of your being is beyond time space and causality
yet gives rise to the manifest universe this is the universal domain of spirit
in which all distinctions merge in unity having no qualities of its own this
field of pure potentiality manifests as the infinitely diverse world of forms
and phenomena the unbounded ocean of being disguises itself in the sheaths of
the causal subtle and physical realms this non-local unbounded realm is the
source and goal of life Yoga encourages us to bring our attention to this
Universal domain so that we become imbued with the deep stillness and
creativity it represents then even as we are engaged in dynamic activity we
retain the silence and centered awareness of universal spirit the vision
of life as elaborated by Shankara is as useful today as it was centuries ago for
seekers of greater well-being vitality and wisdom Shankara
offers a map that ultimately leads to the soul the seventh spiritual laws of
yoga program provides the technology to support this journey whether you are new
to yoga or have been practicing for some time we intend for this program to shift
your awareness Marcel Proust wrote the real journey of discovery is not in
seeking new landscapes but in seeing with new eyes it is our intention that
the seven spiritual laws of yoga program will enable you to see your environment
body mind and emotions from a new perspective this subtle shift in
consciousness can be a powerful catalytic force for healing and
transformation in your life try this program for a month and you
will see changes not only in your practice of poses but also in your life
as a whole to soul questions nothing here below is profane for those who know
how to see on the contrary everything is sacred
here take out the Shaban the generally recognized founder of yoga philosophy is
the legendary sage Maharishi Patanjali whose life is shrouded in the mists of
myth and history according to one story his mother Ganesha was praying for a
child to Lord Vishnu the God who maintains the universe Vishnu was so
moved by her purity and devotion that he asked his beloved cosmic serpent
Ananta to prepare for human incarnation a tiny speck of Ananta celestial body
fell on Tigana cos upturned palms she nurtured this cosmic seed with her love
until it developed into a baby boy she named her child Patanjali from the word
pot meaning descended from heaven and Anjali the word for her praying posture
this being whose life historians date back to centuries before the birth of
Christ elaborated the principles of yoga for the benefit of humanity in his
classic work the Yoga Sutras Patanjali sets the goal of yoga as nothing short
of total freedom from suffering to fulfill this worthy intention Patanjali
elaborated the eight branches of yoga each of these components of yoga helps
you shift your internal reference point from constricted to expanded
consciousness as you move from local to non-local awareness your internal
reference points spontaneously transforms from ego to spirit which
enables you to see the bigger picture when facing any challenge according to
Patanjali whenever we are solely identified with our ego we bind
ourselves to things that do not have permanent reality this may be attachment
to a relationship a job a body or a material possession
it may be attachment to a belief or an idea of the way things should be
whatever the object of attachment is the binding of your identity to something
that resides in the world of forms and phenomena is the seed cause of distress
unhappiness and illness remembering that the real you is not trapped in the
volume of a body for the span of a lifetime is the key to a genuine freedom
and joy Yoga is designed to give you a glimpse of your essential self by taking
you from deep silence into dynamic action and back again to profound
stillness in the practice of the seven spiritual laws our
yoga program you will experience this full range of yoga stillness to activity
and back to stillness Yoga philosophy begins with the spirit getting in touch
with your spirit is the true goal of yoga it occurs naturally when your mind
quiets and you are able to access the inner wisdom that emerges from the
deepest aspect of your being one way to connect with your soul is by consciously
asking yourself questions that go to the heart of the human experience there are
three key questions that help shift your internal reference point from ego to
spirit they are who am i what do I want how can I serve whether or not you are
aware of it these questions are directing your choices in life
regularly bringing your current answers to conscious awareness enables you to be
alert to the opportunities that resonate with the needs of your soul
one asks the question who are you most people usually identify themselves in
terms of their positions and possessions you might say I am the chief financial
officer of a software company or I am a high school math teacher you may
identify with where you live saying I am a New Yorker or on Canadian
you may identify yourself in terms of a relationship by responding I am the
assistant to the president or I am a mother although we all have the tendency
to identify ourselves with roles objects and relationships in our lives
yoga encourages us to go deeper into our being and find the inner place that is
beyond external anchors this is the source of all energy and creativity in
life when you begin to recognize that your essential nature is unbounded and
eternal life becomes joyful meaningful and carefree try this simple exercise to
become aware of your current internal reference point simply close your eyes
take a few slow deep breaths and settle your awareness in the area of your heart
now silently ask yourself the question Who am I every 15 seconds listen
innocently to the answers that emerge from your deeper mind as you perform
this process you may recognize that you define yourself by the roles you play
answering the question Who am I with I am a computer programmer the
vice-president of mark a pediatric nurse you may define
yourself by a group with which you identify I am an American a New York
Yankees fan a libertarian you may identify yourself in terms of a
relationship I am a single parent a loving spouse a devoted daughter you may
see yourself in terms of certain practices you perform I am a vegetarian
a triathlete a meditator from the perspective of yoga
each of these identity points represent some aspect of you but not the ultimate
essence of who you are asking the second question of the soul what do I want
takes you deeper in the Upanishads one of the crown jewels in the Vedic body of
literature there is the expression you are what your deep driving desire is as
is your desire so is your will as is your will so is your deed as is your
deed so is your destiny when you know what a person desires you know the
essence of that person to become more aware of your deep desires close your
eyes and ask yourself every 15 seconds the questions what do I want what do I
really want different levels of your being give rise to different desires
your physical body has intrinsic needs for food water oxygen and sexual
gratification listening to the desires of your body
and providing nourishing fulfillment ensure health and vitality your subtle
body has needs for emotional connection achievement and recognition expressing
your talents and honoring the contributions made by others ensure the
health and well-being of your subtle body your causal body has the need for
creative expression and renewal it has the need for unity to predominate over
diversity for expansiveness over restriction the spiritual journey is
wonderful filling the needs of the flesh the needs of the mind and the needs of
the spirit when you are willing to pose the question to yourself what do I
really want you are asking what level of your being is expressing a need listen
to the answers that arise from within you and write them down watch how over
time your desires become fulfilled or are transformed in different expressions
whether they are satisfied or change new desires will
rise to fill the void become conscious of the forces that drive your choices
and you will become more intimate with your essential nature this will deepen
your connection to your soul which is the goal of yoga as you become
increasingly conscious of your identity and your desires ask yourself the third
soul question how can I serve again close your eyes bring your attention
into the area of your heart and ask yourself these questions listening to
the responses that emerge from a deeper aspect of your being how can I serve how
can I be of service how can I help how can I best serve the inner dialogue of
the subtle body revolves around the questions what do I get out of this
what’s in it for me as your inner reference point expands to embrace your
causal body your inner dialogue shifts to how can I help
as your sense of self expands your compassion proportionately increases and
you naturally find yourself caring about how your choices influence those around
you yogic sages would agree that the first century rabbi Hillel questions are
worth asking if I am NOT for myself who will be for me if I am only for myself
what am i if not now when the true purpose of yoga is to discover that
aspect of your being that can never be lost your job may change your
relationships may change your body may change your beliefs may change your
desires may change your ideas about your role in the world may change but the
essence of who you are is the continuity of awareness that has no beginning or
end your thoughts beliefs expectations goals and experiences may come and go
but the one who is having the experiences the experiencer remains as
you progress in your practice you may find that the answers to the questions
who am i what do I want and how can I serve emerge from a deeper
layer of your being you may find your sense of identity changing reflecting a
more expanded view of yourself you may find your desire is becoming less
personal as your concept of self expands you’re concerned about others may
simultaneously increase you may discover a deepening
aspiration to make a contribution to your community and your world this
expansion of self-awareness is the essence of yoga 3 the Royal path to
Union in the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in a clearer light
and what is elusive and deceptive resolves itself into crystal clearness
Mahatma Gandhi your body is a field of molecules your mind is a field of
thoughts underlying and giving rise to your body and your mind is a field of
consciousness the domain of spirit to know yourself as an unbounded spirit
disguised as a body / mind frees you to live with confidence and compassion with
love and enthusiasm to remove the veils that hide the deepest layers of your
being mahadesh Patanjali elaborated the eight branches of yoga yama niyama asana
pranayama pratyahara dharana dhyana and samadhi they are sometimes referred to
as the eight limbs of Sangha of yoga but they are not to be seen as sequential
stages rather they serve as different entry points into an expanded sense of
self through interpretations choices and experiences that remind you of your
essential nature these are the components of Raja yoga the Royal path
to Union let’s review each of them in some detail the first branch of yoga
Yama Yama is most commonly translated as the rules of social behavior they are
the universal guidelines for engaging with others the Yama’s are traditionally
described as one practicing non-violence – speaking truthfully 3 exercising
appropriate sexual control for being honest 5 being generous all spiritual
and religious traditions encourage people to live ethical lives yoga agrees
but concedes that living a life in perfect harmony with your environment is
difficult from the level of morality so a prescribed set of shoulds and should
nots Patanjali describes the Yama’s as the spontaneously evolutionary behavior
of an enlightened being if you recognize that your individuality is intimately
woven into the fabric of life that you are a strand in
the web of life you lose the ability to act in ways that are harmful to yourself
for others you would here to the rules of social conduct because you are
behaving from the level of spontaneous right action this state of behaving in
accordance with natural law is called Kriya Shakti
although the sanskrit words Kriya and karma both mean action Kriya is action
that does not generate reaction as opposed to Karma which automatically
generates proportionate consequences there are no personal consequences when
you are acting from the level of Kriya Shakti because you do not generate any
resistance people sometimes describe this state as being in the flow or in
the zone acting from this level of your soul you are incapable of being violent
because your whole being is established in peace this is the essence of the
first Yama known in sanskrit is a himself your thoughts are nonviolent
your words are nonviolent and your actions are nonviolent violence cannot
arise because your heart and mind are filled with love and compassion for the
human condition Mahatma Gandhi championed the principle of non-violence
in the independence movement of India from Britain he said if you express your
love in such a manner that it impresses itself indelibly upon your so-called
enemy he must return that love and that requires far greater courage than
delivering of blows the second Yama is truthfulness or satya truthfulness
derives from a state of being in which you are able to distinguish your
observations from your interpretations you accept the world as it is
recognizing that reality is a selective act of attention and interpretation
recognizing that truth is different for different people you commit to life
supporting choices that are aligned with an expanded view of self Patanjali
described truth as the integrity of thought word and action
you speak the sweet truth and are inherently honest because truthfulness
is an expression of your commitment to a spiritual life the short-term benefits
of distorting the truth are outweighed by the discomfort that arises from
betraying your integrity ultimately you recognize truth love and God to be
different expressions of the same undifferentiated reality
bromwich aria the third yama is often translated as celibacy we believe this
is a limited view of this yama the word is derived from Achara meaning pathway
in brahman meaning unity consciousness in Vedic society people traditionally
choose one of two paths to enlightenment the path of the householder and the path
of a renunciate for those choosing the path of a monk or a nun the path to
unity consciousness naturally includes forsaking sexual activity for the vast
majority of people choosing the householder path but I’m Acharya means
rejoicing in the healthy expression of sexual energy one interpretation of the
word charge’ is grazing suggesting that Brahma chharia connotes partaking of the
sacred as you are engaged in your daily life the essential creative power of the
universe is sexual and you are a loving manifestation of that energy seeing the
entire creation as an expression of the divine impulse to generate you celebrate
the creative forces but I’m Acharya means aligning with the creative energy
of the cosmos ultimately as your soul makes love with the cosmos your need to
express your sexuality may be supplanted by a more expanded expression of love
the fourth yama Ostia or honesty means we’re languishing the
idea that things outside yourself will provide you security and Happiness Ostia
is being established in a state of non grasping lack of honesty almost always
derives from fear of loss loss of money love position power the ability to live
an honest life is based upon a deep connection to spirit when inner fullness
predominates you’ll lose the need to manipulate obscure or deceive honesty is
the intrinsic state of a person living a life of integrity
according to yoga life supporting evolutionary behaviors are the natural
consequence of expanded awareness the fifth yama generosity or aparigraha
derives from the shift in internal reference from predominantly ego based
to predominantly spirit based a yogi who knows that his essential nature is
non-local spontaneously expresses generosity in every thought word and
action constricted awareness Rhian for as limitations expanded awareness
generates abundance consciousness this Shama implies the absence of
aversion established in a pot agraja your attachment to the accumulation of
material possessions loses its hold on you it doesn’t mean you don’t enjoy the
world you are simply not imprisoned by it the practice of yoga which cultivates
expanded awareness awakens generosity because nature is generous the second
branch of yoga knew Yama the second limb of yoga as outlined by Patanjali
is new Yama traditionally interpreted as the rules of personal behavior we see
them as the qualities naturally expressed in an evolutionary personality
how do you live when no one is looking what choices do you make when you are
the only witness the jnanis of yoga encouraged one purity to contentment
three discipline for spiritual exploration five surrender to the divine
again these qualities do not arise by making a mood of moral
self-righteousness but they emerge as a result of a person living a natural
balanced life HG Wells said moral indignation is jealousy with a halo and
yoga would agree like ideal social conduct
evolutionary personal qualities derived from your connection to spirit focusing
on the first Miyama purity or suture that’s no value to life if it encourages
the judgmental mindset but it is of great value if you see your choices in
terms of nourishment versus toxicity your body and mind are constructed from
the impressions that you ingest from the environment the sounds sensations sights
tastes and smells carry the energy and information that are metabolized into
you Yoga encourages you to consciously choose experiences that are nourishing
to your body mind and soul contentment or santosha
the second new yama is the fragrance of present moment awareness when you
struggle against the present moment you struggle against the entire cosmos
contentment however does not imply acquiescence Yogi’s are committed in
thought word and deed to supporting evolutionary change that enhances the
well-being of sentient creatures on this planet
contentment implies acceptance without resignation contentment emerges when you
relinquish your attachment to the need for control power and approval santosha
is the absence of addiction to power sensation and security through the
practice of yoga your experience of the present moment quiets the mental
turbulence that disturbs your contentment contentment that reflects a
state of being in which your peace is independent of situations and
circumstances happening around you the third new yama tapas is traditionally
translated as discipline or austerity the word tapas means fire when the fire
of a Yogi’s life is burning brightly she is a beacon of light radiating balance
and peace to the world the fire is also responsible for digesting both
nourishment and toxicity a healthy inner fire can metabolize all impurities
people often associate disciplined with deprivation the lives of people
established in a yogic lifestyle may appear to be disciplined because their
biological rhythms are aligned with the rhythms of nature they arise early
meditate daily exercise regularly eat in a healthful and balanced way and go to
bed early because they directly experience the benefits of harmonizing
their personal rhythms with those of nature tapas is embracing transformation
as the pathway to higher consciousness self-study or Spaziano
is the fourth yama traditionally this is interpreted as being dedicated to the
study of spiritual literature but at its heart self study means looking inside
there is a difference between knowledge and knowingness Yoga advises us not to
confuse information with wisdom and self-study helps you understand the
distinction self study encourages self referral as opposed to object referral
your value and security come from a deep connection to spirit rather than from
the things with which you are surrounded when Sladjana is lively in your
awareness joy arises from within rather than being dependent upon outer
accomplishments or acquisitions the final new yama Ishwara prana donna is
often translated as faith or surrendering to God Ishwara is the
personalized aspect of the infinite even when considering the boundless the
human mind wants to create boundaries eshwara is the name applied that makes
familiar the infinite and unbounded field of intelligence ultimately Ishwara
prana donna is surrendering to the wisdom of uncertainty the seeds of
wisdom are sown when you surrender to the unknown the known is the past true
transformation healing and creativity flow out of present moment awareness
which means relinquishing your attachment to the past and embracing
uncertainty a deeply spiritual friend of ours once contacted us from the coronary
care unit at a New York Hospital to say he had just had an emergency three
vessel coronary artery bypass operation only 42 years old he had never smoked he
was a vegetarian and he meditated regularly we obviously were very
concerned about how he was doing and feeling but he quickly reassured us he
was doing well and was confident that everything would work out fine he
explained that a few days earlier he had been visiting Long Island and had driven
to Coney Island to ride on the roller coasters he enjoyed riding the roller
coasters because despite the turbulence he knew he was safe in an analogous way
because of his deep connection to spirit our friend was able to surrender to the
unknown when a blood vessel to his heart suddenly became blocked he trusted that
despite the twists and turns his life was taking he would be okay whatever the
outcome this is Ishwara prima donna surrender to the divine the yamas and
niyamas represent the inner dialogue of a yogi these are not qualities one can
make a mood of or manipulate they arise spontaneously is the natural expression
of a more expanded sense of self you can see them as milestones of your spiritual
progress allow them to resonate in your awareness avoiding the impulse to be
self critical or judgmental when you occasionally fail to express the highest
value of each principle to awaken spontaneous evolutionary thought and
action in your being Patanjali encourages you to put your
attention on more refined aspects of your body your breath your senses and
your mind these are the next branches of yoga the third branch of yoga asana the
Isana means seat or position when people consider yoga they usually think of this
branch which refers to the postures people enter in to achieve physical
flexibility atone at a deeper level asana means the full expression of mind
body integration in which you become consciously aware of the flow of life
energy in your body performing asanas with full awareness is
practiced for performing action in life with awareness in the great indian epic
the bhagavad-gita lord krishna instructs the archetype of human Arjuna first to
become established in being then to perform action in accordance with
evolutionary law the expression in sanskrit is yoga guru karmani which
means established in yoga perform action yoga
here refers to the unified integrated state of body mind and spirit the
postures of yoga offer tremendous benefit to your body and mind they help
create balance flexibility and strength all essential qualities for a healthy
dynamic life when performed vigorously in sets yoga can also be a powerful
aerobic exercise to improve your cardiovascular fitness in addition to
the direct benefits during the performance of postures asanas provide
enduring values throughout the day if you perform a Sun as regularly you will
feel more flexible physically and emotionally flexibility is the essential
difference between the vitality of youth and the lassitude of old age
here is a yogic expression that we find inspiring infinite flexibility is the
secret to immortality like a palm tree that adapts to rather than resist gale
force winds a flexible body and mind and able to adapt to the inevitable changes
that Life offers regular practice of yoga asanas cultivates flexibility while
helping to release stagnating toxins from your body that inhibit the free
flow of vital energy in the seven spiritual laws of yoga program we have
chosen asanas that enhance the flexibility of your joints improve your
balance strengthen your muscles and calm your mind if you combine flexibility
balance strength and inner peace you can surmount any obstacle the fourth branch of yoga pranayama
prana is life force it is the essential energy that animates inert matter into
living evolving biological beings as first-year medical students we took
classes in gross anatomy in which there was the implied assumption that studying
a cadaver could teach us about life at the turn of the 20th century scientists
would weigh someone immediately before and after they died to see if they could
quantify what had left they did not record a difference concluding that the
soul did not weigh anything from the perspective of yoga the difference
between a living being in a cadaver is the presence of prana or vital energy
when prana is flowing freely throughout your body / mind you will feel healthy
and vibrant when prana is blocked fatigued and diseased soon follow the
concept of an animating force is present in every major wisdom and healing
tradition it is known as Qi or Chi in traditional Chinese medicine Andhra in
the Kabbalistic tradition according to Patanjali a key way to enliven prana is
through conscious breathing techniques known as pranayama pranayama means
mastering the life force there is an intimate relationship between your
breath and your mind when you’re mind is centered and quiet so is your breath
when your mind is turbulent your breathing becomes disordered there are a
number of classic pranayama breathing exercises that we will discuss in
chapter 4 that are designed to cleanse balance and invigorate the body just as
your breath is affected by your mental activity your mind can be influenced by
conscious regulation of your breathing pranayama is a powerful technology to
enhance newer respiratory integration prana is the life force that flows
throughout nature in the universe when you are tuned into the pranic energy in
your body you spontaneously become more attuned to the relationship between your
individuality and your universality in this way pranayama can take you from a
constricted state to an expanded state of awareness the fifth branch of yoga
class II Hara Patanjali encouraged us to take time withdrawing our senses from
the world to hear our inner voice more clearly
pratyahara is the process of directing the census inward to become aware of the
subtle elements of sound touch sight taste and smell ultimately all
experiences in consciousness when you look at a flower in your garden your
eyes receive frequencies of electromagnetic radiation that trigger
chemical reactions in the rods and cones at the back of your eyes as a result of
these chemical changes in your retinas electrical impulses are generated that
eventually reached the visual cortex at the back of your brain the
interpretation of these fluctuations in energy and information takes place in
your consciousness although you imagine that you are seeing the flower outside
of you you are actually experiencing it within you on the screen of your
awareness this is why the great Yogi’s say I am NOT in the world the world is
in me Plataea Hara is the process of tuning into your subtle sensory
experiences known in yoga as the tan mattress within your awareness are the
seeds of sound sensation sight taste and scent by going inside yourself you can
access these impulses and directly experience the knowledge that the world
of forms and phenomena is a projection of your awareness you can awaken the
tone matras by consciously activating subtle sensory impressions on the screen
of your awareness ask a friend to recite these descriptions to you while your
eyes are closed sound imagine the ringing of a church
bell the buzzing of a mosquito in your ear the roar of an ocean wave crashing
against the shore touch imagine the feel of a fine cashmere sweater the softness
of a baby skin drops of rain falling on your face during a summer shower sight
imagine a sunset over a calm ocean a fireworks display the face of your
mother taste imagine biting into a luscious
fresh strawberry a spoonful of rich chocolate ice cream a pungent jalapeno
pepper smell imagine the smell of the rich earth after a spring rain the
fragrance of blooming lilacs the aroma a bakery pratyahara is the process of
temporarily withdrawing the census from the outer world in order to recognize
the sensations of your inner world in a way pratyahara can be seen as sensory
fasting the word is comprised at prati meaning away and ihara meaning food if
you stay away from food for a while the next meal you take will usually taste
exceptionally delicious when your senses are withdrawn for a time you are able to
tune into the subtler tastes and smells Yoga suggests that the same is true for
all your experiences in the world if you take the time to withdraw from the world
for a little while you will find that your experiences are more vibrant in
practice but at Yahara means paying attention to the sensory impulses you
encounters throughout the day limiting to the extent possible those that are
toxic and maximizing those that are nourishing to your body mind and soul
choose sounds sensations sights tastes and smells that inspire you be aware of
and do your best to reduce situations circumstances and people who deplete you
of your vitality and enthusiasm for life when it comes to your yoga practice but
at Yahara means defining a space where you are less likely to be distracted by
distressing sensations in your environment such as loud music blaring
television shows and aggravating arguments so you can bring your
awareness to quieter realms within your consciousness it means taking time on a
daily basis to close your eyes so you can settle into more expanded states of
awareness through meditation the sixth branch of yoga Dharana
dadada is the mastery of attention and intention the world at its essential
core is a quantum soup of energy and information what you actually perceive
is a selective act of your attention and interpretation the difference between an
apple and an orange or a rose and a carnation boils down to differences in
the quantity and quality of the energy and information that comprise the object
of your perception through your attention and intention you freeze the
energy and information contained in a fragrant soft petaled thorny stem flower
and create a multi-sensory representation in your awareness that
you identify as a rose without the unique biology of your
human nervous system the concept of a rose would only exist as a potential
whatever you place your attention on grows and importance to you whether your
intention is on building a business becoming physically fit improving a
relationship or developing a spiritual practice the object of your attention is
enlivened by your awareness and becomes a more predominant force in your life by
learning to value your attention as a precious commodity you will be able to
consciously create well-being and success in your life an essential
component of yoga is refining your attention in order to facilitate healing
and transformation in your body / mind once you activate something with your
attention your intentions have a powerful influence on what things
manifest in your life according to yoga your intentions have infinite organizing
power your intention may be to heal an illness create more love in your life or
become more aware of your own divinity simply by becoming clear about your
intentions you will begin to see them actualize in your life when your
awareness is established in being and you have a clear intention nature
rallies to help you fulfill your deepest desires be aware of your intentions make
a list of the most important things you would like to see unfold in your life
review them twice daily before you go into meditation as your mind quiets down
release your intentions surrendering your desires to the universe then pay
attention to the clues that arise in your life that are directing you to the
fulfillment of your desires will explore attention and intention in greater depth
in the next chapter the seventh branch of yoga diana diana is the development
of witnessing awareness it is the expression of knowing that you are in
this world but not of this world throughout your life you have
experiences which change moment to moment your environment changes your
friends change your employment changes your body changes your feelings change
your thoughts change the only constant in life is perpetual change
dianna is the cultivation of your awareness so that in the midst of this
unending change you do not lose yourself in the objects of your experience
although situations circumstances people and things are ever-changing in your
life the aspect of you that is witnessing these changes is the essence
of your being your soul the most direct way to cultivate this state of ever
present witnessing awareness is through meditation during which you learn to
observe the thoughts feelings sensations and sounds that arise in your awareness
without needing to react to them as you develop this skill in meditation you are
able to apply it in your daily life you learn to stay centered and awake to all
possibilities whenever a challenge arises so that you are able to choose
the best course of action that will maximize the chances that your
intentions and desires will be fulfilled the eighth branch of yoga Samadhi
Samadhi is the state of being settled in pure unbounded awareness going beyond
time and space beyond past and future beyond individuality Samadhi is tasting
the realm of eternity and infinity this is your essential nature immersing
yourself in Samadhi on a regular basis catalyzes the transformation of your
internal reference point from ego to spirit you perform your actions in the
world as an individual while your inner state is one of a universal being this
is a state of being in which fear and anxiety do not arise you surrender your
need to take yourself too seriously because you recognize that life is a
cosmic play and like a great actor you perform your role impeccably but do not
lose your real self in the character you’re playing this is the goal of yoga
to know yourself as a spiritual being disguised as a human being to be
established in union and perform action in harmony with the evolutionary flow of
life we’ve now explored the map of yoga as elaborated by Patanjali the great
voyager of inner space in the next chapter we’ll delve into the principles
that support the foundation of yoga the seven spiritual laws that govern the
relationship between the body mind and soul for the seven spiritual laws of
yoga if you can cease all Restless activity your integral nature will
appear now sue we have reviewed the theoretical frameworks presented
by two of the greatest Yogi’s the world has known Shankara and Patanjali these
closely related classic approaches remain as the cornerstones of yoga
philosophy in this chapter we will apply the seven spiritual laws of success to
the principles and practice of yoga the seven spiritual laws of success are the
laws of nature applied to the human experience
they are the principles through which the unmanifest becomes the manifest
through which spirit becomes the material universe we believe there is
value in applying the seven laws to the practice of yoga because the principles
that underlie yoga are the principles that support a life of balance
flexibility and vitality the practice of yoga is practiced for life success in
yoga provides a template for success in life the seven laws are presented in a
condensed form with a focus on their application to a yogic practice each law
is associated with a specific mantra whose vibration resonates with the core
principle we encourage you to review the law of the day each morning when you
awaken and each evening before bed for a few minutes throughout the day bring the
corresponding mantra into your awareness so that the energy of the law resonates
within you for years people around the world have begun their days with a
review of one of the laws and the intention to implement it throughout
today we suggest that you focus on the first spiritual law of success on the
sunday of every week each subsequent day put your attention on the next law
ending with the seventh law on Saturday in this way you will begin resonating
with the millions of other people who are putting their attention on the seven
spiritual laws of success let’s review each of them as they apply to the
practice of yoga day of the week and spiritual law Sunday law of pure
potentiality Monday law of giving and receiving Tuesday law of karma or cause
and effect Wednesday law of least effort Thursday
law of intention and desire Friday law of detachment Saturday law of Dharma or
purpose in life law one the law of pure potentiality the first spiritual law of
success is the law of pure potentiality which states that at the core of your
being you are pure awareness this realm of pure aware
is the domain of all possibilities and underlies creativity in all its forms
pure consciousness is your spiritual essence and the source of your joy in
life the realm of pure potentiality is the home of knowledge intuition balance
harmony and bliss giving rise to thoughts feelings and actions it remains
undisturbed this domain is the womb of silence that gives birth to all forms
and phenomena in life it is your essential nature at your core you are
pure potentiality the silent ever-present witness is your true self
the experience of the self or self referral means that your internal
reference point is your soul rather than the objects of your experience the
opposite of self referral is object referral an object referral you are
influenced by what is happening outside the self which includes situations
circumstances people and things an object referral you need and therefore
are constantly seeking the approval of others in order to feel comfortable and
worthy because an object referral your thoughts and behavior are always an
anticipation of a response it is a fear-based state of being the
ego is your internal reference in the state of object referral the ego however
is not who you really are rather it is your social mask the roles you are
playing at one moment you play the role of friend in the next the antagonist you
play the role of child in the presence of your parents and the role of parent
when you are with your children you play one role when speaking with your
supervisor and another with those you supervise your social mask thrives on
approval strives to control and is sustained by power the corollary of this
is that your ego lives in fear of losing approval control and power but your true
self your soul is completely free of these things it is immune to criticism
fears no challenge and feels neither beneath nor above anyone your soul
recognizes at its deepest level that everyone else is the same self in
different disguises during the practice of yoga the law of pure potentiality
reminds us that every movement emerges from the silent field of infinite
possibility the more powerful the silence a more effective the movement
every movement is a vibration a wave on the ocean of life
a deeper the connection to the depths of the ocean the more powerful is the wave
that arises while practicing your yoga poses bring your attention back to the
silent space within you between every movement and every posture remain in a
state of mindful witnessing as you perform each pose cultivating the
experience of having your awareness in this non localized domain of pure
potentiality as you engage in activities localized in time and space enliven the
law of pure potentiality while performing yoga poses and throughout
your day by taking the time to do the following three things 1 cultivate
stillness in your body in mind between poses and between movements bring your
attention to the quiet stillness within you after performing your set of yoga
postures sit alone in silent meditation for approximately 20 minutes by quieting
the mind and meditation you will learn to directly experience the field of pure
awareness where everything is inseparably connected with everything
else – during your postures and during each
day practice shifting it to a witnessing mode of awareness observed from the
inner stillness of your soul the dynamic activity of the world take time each day
to commune with nature and silently witness the intelligence within every
living thing watch a sunset listen to the sound of the ocean or stream or
simply smell the scent of a flower from the peace of your inner silence and
through your communication with nature you will experience joy and reverence
for the eternal movement of life in all its manifestations 3 practice non
judgment while performing your yoga postures relinquished the need to judge
your ability begin each session with the statement today I shall judge nothing
that occurs and remind yourself that self-acceptance is the source and goal
of yoga when you are constantly making judgments including of yourself as
things being right or wrong good or bad you create turbulence in your internal
dialogue which constricts the flow of energy between you and the field of pure
potentiality non judgement cultivates silence in the mind which gives you
direct access to the field of pure potentiality memorize the mantra whose
vibratory these resonate with the law of pure
potentiality and silently repeated a few times throughout the day to remind you
that your essential nature is pure potentiality ohm bobbum namah I am
absolute existence law – the law of giving and receiving the second
spiritual law of success is the law of giving and receiving which states that
the universe operates through dynamic exchange your body is in constant and
dynamic exchange with the body of the universe your mind is dynamically
interacting with the mind of the cosmos life is the flow of all the elements and
forces that comprise the field of existence the harmonious exchange
between your physical body and the physical universe and between your
personal mind and the collective mind is expressed as the law of giving and
receiving because your body your mind and the universe are in constant and
dynamic exchange stopping the circulation of energy is like stopping
the flow of blood whenever blood stops flowing it begins to clot to coagulate
whatever a river stops flowing it begins to stagnate this is why you must be open
to giving and receiving in order to keep the lifeforce circulating within you the
most important thing is the intention behind your giving and receiving the
attention should always be to create happiness for the giver and the receiver
because happiness is life supporting and life sustaining the return is
proportional to the giving when it is unconditional and from the heart this is
why the act of giving has to be joyful the frame of mind has to be one in which
you feel joy in the very act of giving then the energy behind the giving
increases many times over during your yoga practice the law of giving and
receiving is lively and every breath you take with each inhalation and exhalation
you are exchanging ten billion trillion atoms with your environment right now
take its deeper breath as you possibly can and hold it hold it as long as you
can and notice how uncomfortable you begin to feel when you are holding on to
something that is meant to be released now exhale as fully as you can and hold
your breath with your lungs fully emptied again feel the discomfort that
arises when you are resisting taking in something that you need
whenever you resist the law of giving and receiving your mind becomes anxious
and your body becomes uncomfortable with every pose you assume complimentary
pairs of muscles are contracting and relaxing holding and releasing in
accordance with the law of giving and receiving when the life force is flowing
freely throughout your body / mind you are in natural alignment with
the generosity and receptivity of the universe make the commitment to put the
second law of success into effect in your yoga practice by taking the
following three steps one during your yoga poses maintain breathing awareness
effortlessly exchanging air with your environment through the inflow and
outflow of your breath anytime throughout the day that you feel
resistance in your body because things are not going the way you think they
should bring your attention to your breath and use it to regain your sense
of effortless receiving and releasing to cultivate the sense of gratitude for the
gifts you have in your life during your yoga practice tune into the life force
that is circulating through your body and be grateful for the opportunity to
experience life through a human mind and body enjoy the sensation of your body
contracting and expanding as you move through your postures celebrate your
physical manifestation that enables your soul to express its meaning and purpose
in life celebrate the very improbable ‘ti of your existence
our beloved teacher paramananda Saraswathi once said that it might take
a million incarnations until you gain a human nervous system if you do not use
it to remember and rejoice in your sacred nature you have traded a diamond
for a head of lettuce three during your practice of yoga have the intention of
surrendering to the needs of your body rather than forcing your will upon your
body to attain a specific pose practice listening to the needs of your muscles
and joints the impulse to give flows naturally from the experience of
gratitude you will find that through this subtle shift in your attitude
challenging postures are more easily achieved outside of your asana practice
have the intention to give something to everyone you come into contact with
during the day it might be a kind word compliment a smile a prayer or a small
gift similarly be open to receiving the gifts that come to you during the day
they may be gifts from nature such as the songs of birds a spring shower a
rainbow or a beautiful sunset they may be gifts from people in your life a warm
embrace a kind gesture a helpful suggestion make the commitment to
enliven the law of giving and receiving by taking every opportunity to circulate
love carrying affection appreciation and acceptance learn the mantra whose
vibratory qualities resonate with the law of giving and receiving and repeat
it silently to yourself whenever you find yourself restricting the flow of
giving and receiving in your life au revoir de nom nom ah I am the nourisher
of the universe law 3 the law of karma or cause and effect the third spiritual
law of success pertains to karma or cause and effect every action we take
generates a force of energy that returns to us in kind as we sow so we reap when
we consciously choose actions that bring happiness and success to others the
fruit of our karma is happiness and success although many people
misinterpret the law of karma as imprisoning us in a cycle of unending
reactivity it is actually an assertion of human freedom karma implies the
action of conscious choice making for we are all infinite choice makers in every
moment of your existence the real you resides in the field of pure
potentiality where you have access to unlimited choices some of these choices
are made consciously while most are made unconsciously the best way to understand
and maximize the use of karmic law is to become consciously aware of the choices
you make in every moment whether you like it or not everything that is
happening at this moment is a result of the choices you’ve made in the past when
you make choices unconsciously you don’t think they are choices and yet they are
if you step back a moment and witness the choices you are making then in just
this act of witnessing you take the process from the unconscious into the
conscious realm in every situation there is one choice out of the many available
that will create happiness as well as for those around you and when
you make that one choice it will nourish you and everyone else influenced by that
action applied to your practice of yoga law of karma is demonstrated as you
consciously move through your postures aware of how there is a reaction for
every action you execute if in your impatience you force yourself into a
pose that you are not fully ready to perform your body / mind will react and
the consequences of your straining will generate feelings of strain within you
on the other hand when you move gracefully into the limits of each pose
with an attitude of gentleness and finesse your body / mind responds with
effortlessness and ease notice that by slowing down your movements you become
more aware of the karmic consequences of your choices if your body is unusually
uncomfortable the morning after a yoga session it is most likely the result of
your ignoring the law of karma you probably push too hard making a less
than ideal choice and the karmic cost is your discomfort karma presents itself in
your present by reminding you of your past choosing more consciously from the
witnessing realm of quiet awareness you make karma free choices put the law of
karma into effect in your yoga practice and your life so that you make the most
evolutionary choices commit yourself to the following three steps one as you
move through your yoga practice witness the choices you make in each moment in
the witnessing of your choices you will bring them into your conscious awareness
they fully present in this moment and your next moment will not carry the
consequences of the prior one the best way to prepare for any moment in the
future is to be fully conscious in the present – as you make your choice about
how to move through resistance in your poses ask yourself two questions what
are the consequences of the choice I’m making and will this choice bring
comfort when you make your choices outside of your practice of yoga ask
yourself which choice is most likely to bring happiness and fulfillment to me
and to those affected by my choice 3 then listen to your heart for guidance
and be guided by its message of comfort or discomfort your heart is the junction
point between your mind and your body if the choice
feels comfortable in your body move into it with confidence if the choice feels
uncomfortable pause and see the consequences of your action with your
inner vision honoring the guidance that is provided by your body’s intelligence
will help you make the most evolutionary choices for yourself and those in your
life become familiar with the mantra whose vibratory qualities resonate with
the law of karma and repeated to yourself when you are making karmically
significant choices thinking the mantra will remind you to listen to your body
so your choice will be most likely to provide you with greater comfort and joy
um Kriya na ma my actions are aligned with cosmic law law for the law of least
effort the law of least effort states that nature’s intelligence functions
with effortless ease if you look at the ebb and flow of the tides the blossoming
of a flower or the movement of the stars you do not see nature straining there is
rhythm and balance in the natural world and when you are in harmony with nature
you can make use of the law of least effort by minimizing your effort and
maximizing your effect when a Newtonian model of the world predominated in our
collective awareness the principles of force and effort were dominant but in
our modern era when quantum physics provides the most comprehensive model of
how the universe works there was no place for force and effort rather timing
and finesse are the tools for transformation in a world that is
understood as the expression of an underlying field of energy and
information stated simply the law of least effort tells us that we can do
less and accomplish more nature is held together by the energy of love at least
effort is expended when your actions are motivated by love when your soul is your
internal reference point you can harness the power of love and use the energy
creatively for healing transformation and evolution the law of least effort is
of immeasurable value during the practice of yoga Yoga is the antidote to
the prescription no pain no gain the greatest benefits of yoga come from
relaxing into a pose rather than forcing your body into it when moving into a
flexibility pose find the point of resistance rather than muscling
away through this point breathe into the resistance surrender into the resistance
and you will find yourself extending your reach and enhancing your
flexibility stay present with your full awareness in your body and engage an
attitude of surrender in yoga as in life patience is a virtue in yoga the more
you are able to embrace rather than fight your limitations and
vulnerabilities the less limits they hold and the more balance and energy you
experience to enliven the law of least effort in your yoga practice and in your
life make a commitment to the following three steps one practice acceptance
during your yoga practice accept your body the way it is although you may have
intention for it to change in some way accept that how it is now is exactly as
it should be because the universe is as it should be
give up your need to struggle against the whole universe by struggling against
this moment by acknowledging each situation as it exists you are in the
best position to help evolve it to a new level in your daily life practice
accepting people as they are and circumstances as they occur
understanding that every moment in your life is the consequence of every prior
choice you’ve made rather than resisting who or what is currently in your life
practice acceptance of what is present and reinforce your commitment to make
more conscious choices from this moment on to having accepted things as they are
take responsibility for the challenge you are facing as applied to your yoga
practice this means making the commitment to nurture your body through
appropriate exercise and nutrition if you are seeking to change your body in a
positive way taking responsibility does not mean indulging and blame for the
state of your body now remember that every challenge is an opportunity in
disguise and this alertness to opportunity allows you to take this
moment and transform it for a greater benefit three
establish your awareness and defenselessness do not waste your life
energy defending your point of view or attempting to convince others remain
open to all points of view without rigidly attaching yourself to any one of
them the third principle is of particular relevance to your yoga
practice there are many different schools of yoga without one right way
every teacher and every system has its own variations on postures pace style
and intensity as a system dedicated to awakening flexibility in body mind and
spirit Yoga can accommodate and celebrate the
many diverse approaches that have developed over past centuries experiment
for yourself with different approaches and find the style that best fits with
your needs at a given time of your life the right yoga system for you is the one
that enhances your vitality and flexibility commit yourself to the law
of least effort and you will cease wasting your vital energy in friction
and conflict liberated this energy becomes available to you for creativity
personal growth and healing whenever you find yourself forcing an outcome that is
not ready to manifest remember the law of least effort introduced the mantra
that resonates with the principle that you can accomplish more by doing less if
you are not wasting energy by struggling and straining ohm Daksha namah my
actions achieve maximal benefit with minimal effort law five the law of
intention and desire the fifth spiritual law of success is the law of intention
and desire which is based upon the recognition that at the level of the
quantum field there is nothing other than energy and information this quantum
field which is really just another name for the field of pure potentiality is
influenced by intention and desire as a human being you experience the quantum
field subjectively as your own thoughts feelings memories
desires needs expectations fantasies and beliefs you experience the same field
objectively as your physical body in the physical world at the level of the field
the collection of thoughts called your mind and the collection of molecules
called your body are different disguises of the same underlying reality the
ancient yogic sages had an expression for this realization cut tuam a C which
translates as I am that you are that all this is that and that’s all there is if
you accept that your personal body is not separate from the body of the
universe then by consciously changing the energy and informational content of
your own body you can influence the energy and information of your exten
body your environment your world this influence is activated by two qualities
inherent in consciousness attention and intention attention and live-ins
while intention transforms if you want something to grow stronger in your life
direct more of your attention to it if you want something to diminish in your
life withdraw your attention from it intention on the other hand catalyzes
the transformation of energy and information into new forms and
expressions according to ancient yogic principles your intention has organizing
power accomplished Yogi’s are masters of attention and intention they can
influence components of their physiology in ways that modern science used to
think were impossible Yogi’s can raise and lower their blood pressure speed up
or slow down their heart rates increase or decrease their body temperature and
bring their respiratory system and metabolic activity to almost
imperceptible levels in Chapter five we will show you how to use your attention
and intention for healing and transformation as you become
increasingly adept at governing your own body through the law of intention and
desire you will also experience your intentions being increasingly supported
by nature you can learn to harness the power of the law of intention and desire
in your yoga practice and in your life by following these three steps one be
clear about your intentions and desires on a regular basis take the time to
write down a list of those things you would like to see manifest in your life
review your intentions and desires prior to beginning your yoga practice and
prior to your time of silent meditation modify your list as your desires are
fulfilled or transformed and observe how your intentions and desires evolve when
you take the time to document what you desire in your heart and mind you
accelerate the process of manifesting your desires in the world – even as you
bring your intentions and desires into conscious awareness surrender the
outcome to nature cultivate an attitude of trusting that when things are not
going exactly the way you intend them to there is a grander design at work you
can probably identify times in your life when things were not going according to
your plan only to realize later that something better was waiting for you
around the when performing your yoga poses maintain
this inner attitude of surrender attend to and release your intentions as you
move through your postures and watch the results in your yoga practice and in
your life 3 remind yourself to practice present moment awareness in all your
actions do not allow any obstacles to consume and dissipate the quality of
your attention in the present moment as you engage in a pose be fully in the
present remembering that being in the moment and powers your most cherished
intentions and desires as you energize your intentions and desires with your
attention introduce the mantra that resonates with the law of intention and
desire all written namah my intentions and desires are supported by cosmic
intelligence law 6 the law of detachment the six spiritual law of success is the
law of detachment which reveals a great paradox of life in order to acquire
something in this world you have to relinquish your attachment to it this
doesn’t mean you give up the intention to fulfill your desire you simply give
up your attachment to the outcome attachment is based on fear and
insecurity when you forget that the only genuine source of security is your true
self you begin believing that you need something outside yourself in order to
be happy you may believe that a certain amount of money in the bank paying off
the mortgage on your house obtaining a luxury car losing 10 pounds or
purchasing a new outfit may result in greater feelings of security within
yourself unfortunately whenever your happiness is based upon something other
than your true self insecurity arises because you know at a deep level of your
being that whatever is bringing you happiness can be lost and therefore has
the potential to bring you pain according to the principles of yoga the
only true security comes from your willingness to embrace the unknown the
realm of uncertainty by relinquishing your attachment to the known you step
into the field of pure potentiality in which the wisdom of uncertainty is
factored into all your choices practicing detachment and embracing
uncertainty you relinquish your need to hold on to the past which is the only
thing that is known being open to what is happening rather than try
to control how things unfold you experience the excitement adventure
exhilaration and mystery of life applied to your practice of yoga the law
of detachment encourages you to relinquish your attachment to an
idealized pose rather than seeking only to achieve the perfect posture have the
intention for your practice to awaken deeper and more expanded levels of
awareness within you by relinquishing your attachment to an idealized form and
allowing your awareness to embrace the essence of yoga your body will naturally
release its resistance increases flexibility and will improve as a side
benefit for your detachment Yoga is not a competitive sport and you will not
achieve integration of body mind and spirit through force and effort rather
Yoga is a system of mindful surrender the practice of yoga accomplishes its
goal of Union through attention and intention through the conscious release
of conflict and struggle this is the essence of the law of detachment have
your intentions clearly in your awareness while you maintain an attitude
of thy will be done the coexistence of these apparently contradictory forces
intention and detachment cultivates the flexibility that enables you to fulfill
all your goals in life but the law of detachment into effect in your yoga
practice and in your life by making a commitment to the following three steps
one practice detachment the goal of yoga is flexibility for which detachment is
an essential feature detachment and flexibility go hand in hand
attachment breeds rigidity commit not to rigidly impose your ideas of how things
should be allow yourself and those around you the
freedom to be natural notice that when you for solutions on problems you often
create new problems that did not previously exist remind yourself to
engage in everything with detached involvement to embrace uncertainty is an
essential ingredient of your experience and watch how creative solutions to
problems spontaneously emerge out of chaos cultivate an attitude of curiosity
and innocence as you live your life and notice how a deep inner security
develops within you independent of things around you 3 surrender to the
field of pure potentiality combine your focused in
tension with detachment from the outcome and observe how easily you are able to
fulfill your desires while maintaining your Center even in the midst of
confusion and turbulence introduced the mantra that resonates with the law of
detachment to remind you to relinquish your need to control thereby allowing
creative solutions to emerge from the wisdom of uncertainty ohm anandam namah
my actions are blissfully free from attachment to outcome law 7 the law of
Dharma or purpose in life the seventh spiritual law is the law of Dharma which
states that every sentient being has a purpose in life you have unique
abilities in your own way of expressing them there are needs in this world for
which your specific talents are ideally suited and when the world’s needs are
matched with the creative expression of your talents your purpose your Dharma is
realized to be in Dharma your lifeforce must flow effortlessly without
interference the practice of yoga provides a direct mechanism to release
energy blockages in your body when obstacles to the flow of your vital
energy are removed you become capable of expressing more expanded aspects of
yourself increasing compassion wisdom and playfulness are evidence that your
life is flowing in accordance with the law of Dharma there are three major
components to the law of Dharma the first is that your ultimate purpose is
to discover your Higher Self pursue the god or goddess inside you that wants to
express the sacred purpose for which you were born awaken to the unbounded
eternal witnessing awareness that is the essence of who you are and know yourself
as a timeless eternal being in the midst of time-bound experience the second
component of the law of Dharma is to acknowledge and express your unique
talents take the time to honor your innate gifts by making a list of those
things that you do well one way to connect with your Dharma is to consider
those things that you really love to do make a list of the things that bring joy
to you and to others while you are doing them it might be singing playing the
piano teaching gymnastics or cooking you may be naturally good at deep listening
or caring for those in need whatever your unique talents may
be expressing them brings happiness and satisfaction to you and to others when
you are in the flow of your Dharma expressing your unique talents time
loses its hold on you and you enter into timeless awareness the third component
of Dharma is serving others true dharmic actions naturally bring benefit both to
you and to those affected by your actions the inner dialogue of a person
in his or her Dharma is how can I serve and how can I help the answers to these
questions will allow you to serve your fellow human beings with love and
compassion expressing your gifts in service to others is the highest
expression of the law of Dharma when your creative expressions match the
needs of your fellow humans abundance flows into your life Yoga is action in
accordance with Dharma moving your body with awareness and impeccability is the
essence of a life and harmony with the laws of nature every cell tissue and
organ in your body has its dharma which is to perform its unique function while
supporting the wholeness of the body the digestive tract performs its job of
secreting gastric juices moving food along its pathway absorbing nutrients
and eliminating toxins the endocrine system secretes it’s vital hormones that
regulate metabolism reproduction growth and repair a circulatory system
regulates blood pressure and cardiac output while each of these systems has a
specific role to perform the essential purpose of their existence is to support
the whole physiology your practice of yoga supports the Dharma of your body
when life energy is flowing effortlessly through every cell tissue and organ the
Dharma of each is being fulfilled when as a result of the flexibility balance
and strength gained during your yoga practice you are effortlessly able to
express your talents in the world you are aligned with the law of Dharma when
you allow the intelligence and vital energy of nature to flow through you you
are reminded of your highest purpose serving the world and supporting the
evolutionary flow of life put the law of Dharma into effect in your yoga practice
and in your life by committing to the following three steps 1 pay attention to
the quiet stillness within you that animates your body and mind during your
yoga practice during the day bring your attention to
the Silent Witness that observes your thoughts and actions to become aware of
your unique talents and those things you love to do while expressing your unique
talents in your practice of yoga notice the postures that you enter into easily
and use this information to become more intimate with your nature some people
are naturally flexible some have inherently good muscle strength while
others have innately good balance celebrate your natural talents even as
you strive to develop other ones in yoga and in your life 3 cultivate an inner
conversation of helping and serving when your intentions behind every action are
to align with Dharma your actions will be effortless and successful by asking
the questions how can I help and how can I serve you will fulfill your deeper
purpose in life use the mantra that resonates with the law of Dharma to
remind you of the law of Dharma particularly when you are experiencing
struggle and strife using the mantra will help shift your inner conversation
from what’s in it for me to how can I help
Oh whadda nom nom ah my life is in harmony with cosmic law implement your
insights so far we have explored the theory and philosophy of yoga Yoga is as
much a science of action as it is a way of thinking about life in the next
chapters we will present the essential technologies that when practice
spontaneously implement the theory of yoga into the experience of life
meditation regulating the life force learning to hold and circulate energy
and moving with awareness are the fundamental technologies that need to be
mastered for you to gain the full benefits of yoga on the level of your
body your mind and your soul part 2 meditation and breathing 5 meditation
calming a turbulent mind empty the cup Zen master non eating your mind is a
thought generating organ thought forms perpetually arise in your awareness if
you try to stop your thoughts with the intention of creating stillness in your
mind your mental activity may quiet for a few moments but it will almost
certainly start up again at full speed the activity in your mind is
communicated to every cell in your body when your mind is turbulent your
messenger molecules communicate turbulence to your cells tissues and
organs if you can quiet your mind you can send messages of peace and harmony
to every cell in your body to experience the real essence of yoga
the full integration of body mind and spirit you need to develop the ability
to calm your mental turbulence a thought is a packet of energy and information
according to yoga all thoughts can be classified as either memories or desires
when your mind is active you are either thinking about something that happened
in the past or are anticipating something occurring in the future the
Sanskrit word for memory or past impression is sanskara
while the word for desire is vasana impressions give rise to desires if you
see an advertisement for a flashy car a tropical vacation spot or a designer
dress an impression is laid down in your mind that may give rise to a desire as a
result of this desire you are compelled to take some new action such as going to
a car dealership calling your travel agent or visiting your local boutique
the action that emerges from the desire is called Karma
this endless cycle of impressions giving rise to desires giving rise to actions
resulting in new impressions is the circuitry that keeps your mind
perpetually active we can think of this circuit of sanskara vasana and karma as
the software of your soul as long as you were thinking your mind is churning
through the cycle of action impression desire action impression desire action
meditation is the technology that enables you temporarily to escape from
this cycle through the process of gently focusing your attention known in yoga as
Dharana while innocently witnessing the thought
forms that come and go in your mind dianna you enter into the gap between
thoughts glimpsing the domain of unbounded awareness Samadhi taking your
mind from constricted to expanded awareness meditation offers the most
direct path to awakening the law of pure potentiality in your life your choices
are limited while your mind is engaged in a particular memory or desire people
frequently get caught in habitual ruts of thinking believing that they are
stuck in a situation because they cannot imagine any other
possibilities accessing the field of pure potentiality by going beyond
conditioning through meditation opens up creative possibilities that previously
were unavailable meditation can take many different forms but there is a
common theme in every technique of meditation the process takes you out of
the conditioned mind and opens up access to the non conditioned mind this is
accomplished by experiencing a thought in its less distinct more refined
aspects until eventually you experience the thought as it emerges from the
non-local field of your awareness as you become increasingly familiar with the
experience of thoughts condensing from consciousness your identity begins
shifting from your mind to your soul you can focus on and refine your perception
of objects in any sensory modality you can use music chanting drumming or the
sound of your own breath is a focus of your attention in meditation you can use
visual symbols a candle flame pictures of people you love or a sunset to expand
your consciousness you can go from local to non-local awareness through the sense
of touch from therapeutic massage to sexual rapture you can even momentarily
go beyond time and space through the sense of taste and smell for every
experience in the mind it is possible to refine that experience so your awareness
is less constricted and more expanded this expanded state of mind is the
ultimate expression of the law of pure potentiality for all possibilities
reside in and emerge from this field of unbounded awareness before it arises in
your mind the thought is in this domain of consciousness that is transcended to
thought a domain accessible through meditation an ancient powerful
meditation technique involves asking the question who is having these thoughts by
repeated inquiry you reach the awareness that thoughts arise from a deeper domain
of awareness over which your mind really has no control in the yoga tradition
meditation classically involves the use of a mantra or primordial sound the word
mantra means instrument or vehicle of the mind mantras are used to take your
awareness from engagement in the changing realm of life to immersion in
the expanded state of being that is beyond beginnings and endings these
vibrations used for thousands of years to
mental activity are pleasing resonant sounds that do not have specific
meanings to keep your mind active the mind stays active through the process of
Association if you listen to your mind it may sound like this I need to reduce
my credit card debt I really didn’t need to buy that sweater last week I did need
something to wear to Stan’s party the food was really great I wish I hadn’t
eaten so much I am definitely going to start exercising next week I’m going to
try to get Tonya to go out with me I wonder if she got the job she was
applying for hey Don I’m introducing a mantra temporarily interrupts the
incessant Association process that keeps the mind active introducing a thought
that does not carry meaning momentarily breaks the cycle and allows you to
glimpse the silent space between your thoughts this starts the transformation
of your identity from mind to spirit the best-known mantra is the sound ohm or
ohm traditionally said to be the sound the universe makes when it manifests
from potential to perceptual using the sound that represents the junction point
between local and non-local can take your awareness back to the field of
awareness that gives rise to the mind at the Chopra Center we teach a mantra
meditation technique called primordial sound meditation which assigns a person
one of 108 mantras based upon the date and place of a person’s birth this
requires personalized instruction which is available through our certified
meditation instructors in most cities throughout the world according to the
theory that underlies primordial sound meditation the universe expresses a
different vibratory frequency at different times during the day you can
appreciate this principle by considering how the environment feels different at
dawn from the way it does at high noon or dusk over the course of a lunar month
the sound of the world changes about a hundred and eight times one of these
hundred and eight sounds is assigned based upon the time date and place of a
person’s birth this primordial sound or mantra is said to represent the sound of
the cosmos at the doorway between potentiality and individuality because
until we emerge through the birth canal we are potential human beings this
primordial sound can be used as a meditation vehicle to
you back through the doorway from individuality to universality the
ultimate goal of meditation chakra meditation a different type of
meditation involves in toning mantras allowed to create a healing resonance in
the mind and body there are mantras associated with each
of the seven energy centers in the body known as chakras the chakras are major
junction points between consciousness and the body and each one is associated
with a specific vibration envisioned by the ancient seers as wheels or vortices
of lifeforce they sometimes have been associated with major neural networks or
hormonal systems chakra first root second root third energy fourth heart
fifth expression sixth intuition seventh consciousness neural Association sacral
plexus lumbar plexus solar plexus cardiac plexus cervical plexus cardioid
plexus cerebral cortex hormonal Association adrenal glands reproductive
glands pancreas insulin thymus gland thyroid gland pituitary gland pineal
gland each Center identifies a core human need
when the center is open the energy that flows through the chakra allows you to
meet those needs more effortlessly if there is a blockage in one area of the
body / mind system energy becomes stagnant and your intentions are more
difficult to actualize you can activate each Center by putting your attention in
the location of the chakra and sounding the Associated mantra aloud to begin
this meditation sit comfortably with your spine upright close your eyes and
visualize the site of the energy center you wish to focus on take a deep breath
and on the inhalation chant the mantra in one long syllable feel the sensations
in your body and notice the sense of alert calm in your mind after each
mantra envision energy flowing effortlessly from the base of your spine
through the different energy centers and rising up through the top of your head
notice how you feel in the meditation and how it affects you when you return
to your active life the first Center root chakra the root
chakra known in Sanskrit as mooladhara is located at the base of the spine it
governs your most basic survival needs what energy is flowing freely through
this Center you have confidence that you can meet your core needs without
struggle when there is blockage in this area you will tend to experience anxiety
and worry the law of karma governs the first energy center on the physical
plane every action you perform results in a corresponding reaction to maximize
the possibility that your actions generate evolutionary reactions you can
use your body as a choice determining instrument consider the possibilities in
front of you and listen to the signals from your body these sensations
generating from the root chakra are are either comfortable or uncomfortable your
body evaluates every possible decision in terms of its likelihood to meet your
needs for safety or increase the level of threat you experience the first
chakra which connects you with the earth provides essential information as to the
potential nourishment or toxicity that is available to you as a result of the
actions you are taking keeping energy open and flowing in this source chakra
is key to both physical and emotional abundance the color for this energy
center is red it is associated with the elements earth and the sense of smell
the mantra for the first chakra is LOM the second Center creativity chakra the
second chakra called swadisthana is associated with creativity and all its
expressions it is located in the area of your sexual organs and the energy of
this center can be used for biological reproduction when channeled into higher
energy centers it fuels the creative force that enables you to paint a
beautiful picture write a novel play music build a business or create a life
of love and abundance the law of least effort is lively in the second chakra
when your vital energy is flowing through your center of creativity you
co-create your life the solution to every problem is rarely on the level of
the problem rather it comes from a deeper domain of creativity creativity
is the process of taking the same raw material and creating different con
texts and relationships between the components when a painter creates a
masterpiece of art she weaves the pigments in a way that results in a
unique creation when a composer creates a new piece of music he is using the
same notes in a new relationship with each other resulting in the emergence of
something that did not exist before a novelist creates a new relationship
between letters and words enabling a story to manifest that had not
previously existed when you are aligned with your creative juices the
expressions that emerge arrives effortlessly the second chakra utilizes
the raw material of the root chakra to create the world anew each day the color
for the second energy center is orange it is associated with the element of
water and the sense of taste the mantra for the second chakra is vom the third
center energy chakra the third chakra manapua is localized in your solar
plexus it is the seat of your power in the world when this Center is open and
flowing you are capable of translating your intentions and desires into
manifestation when it is blocked you feel frustrated and ineffectual the
seeds of intentions and desires reside in your personal soul perishing the
seeds you wish to germinate with your attention will lead to their full
expression the law of intention and desire governs the third chakra it is
important to be clear about your intentions so you are not surprised when
they bear fruit the process of manifesting your desires is first to
bring them into consciousness then expand your awareness through meditation
then release your intentions and detach from the outcome you can control your
actions but you cannot control the fruit of your actions keep your life energy
flowing freely through your third chakra and the light and heat of your
intentions will radiate to the world the color for the third energy center is
yellow like the Sun it is associated with the element of fire and the sense
of sight the mantra to clear and enliven the third chakra is ROM the forest
Center heart chakra the fourth chakra represents the unifying energy of love
and compassion known as Anahata the heart chakra is dedicated to overcoming
separation and division when the heart center is blocked there
is a sense of alienation from others when the heart center is open and
flowing you feel connected at a deep level to all beings in your life the law
of giving and receiving governs the heart chakra love can take many
different forms at different stages of life the love of a child for his mother
is different from a mother’s love for her child a friend’s love is different
from a passionate lovers love or the love of a student for his teacher the
common thread in each of these expressions of love is the impulse to
unify to overcome separation this is the nature of the heart the law of giving
and receiving is expressed through the fourth chakra establishes the principle
that the heart is the organ that circulates love a relationship between
the physical heart and the emotional heart is more than metaphorical studies
have shown that in patients with recent heart attacks men who believe that their
spouses love them suffer fewer complications and have better outcomes
than men who are in conflicted marriages people who perceive the world as hostile
have a higher risk of premature heart attacks than those who feel the world is
a nurturing place just the simple act of a cardiac nurse calling to check on the
well-being of patients recently discharged from a coronary care unit can
reduce the risk of rehospitalization every act of giving is simultaneously an
act of receiving each time you welcome a gift into your life you are providing
the opportunity for someone to give just as a healthy physical heart receives
blood from the periphery which it then oxygenates and pumps back out your
emotional heart stays healthy by receiving and giving love in all its
forms the color of the fourth energy is green when flowing it is the green of
nourishment when congested it can be green with envy it is associated with
the element of air and the sense of touch the mantra that awakens the fourth
chakra is YUM the fifth Center expression chakra the throat chakra
called Vishu da in sanskrit is the center of expression when it is open and
flowing you have the confidence that you are capable of communicating your needs
when the fifth chakra is obstructed a person will often feel that he is not
being heard to feel alive and empowered it is important that this energy center
is energy blockages in this area are often
associated with thyroid problems or chronic neck pain the law of detachment
governs the throat chakra an open fifth chakra enables you to express your truth
without concern for sensors or critics this does not mean you say things that
are intentionally hurtful or insensitive on the contrary people with open centers
of communication are skillful in expressing their needs in ways that are
life supporting anxiety over how people will react to your views does not arise
when energy is flowing freely through the chakra of expression the law of
detachment reminds you that you can choose your words and actions but you
cannot control the response to your words and actions when your intentions
are clear and your heart is open you will spontaneously demonstrate right
speech trusting that the universe will handle the details the colour of the
fifth energy center is blue it is associated with the elements of ether or
space and the sense of hearing the mantra to open the fifth chakra is hum
the sixth Center intuition chakra the sixth energy center is sometimes known
as the third eye located in the forehead as nough as it is known in sanskrit is
the center of insight and intuition when this center is open you have a deep
sense of connection to your inner voice and feel guided in your choices when it
is blocked there is a sense of self-doubt and distrust the opening of
this chakra is usually associated with a clear sense of connection to one’s
Dharma or purpose in life the law of Dharma or purpose in life governs the
sixth chakra you have within you a wise voice guiding you to Express the highest
aspects of your nature listen to this inner still voice which is guiding you
to manifest your full potential quiet the internal turbulence that is filled
with the voices of others so you can identify the sound of your own soul it
has only one desire for you to remember your essential nature is a spark of the
divine the color of the sixth energy Center is indigo it is associated with
extra sensory perceptual abilities such as clairvoyance clairaudience and remote
viewing the sense is inner sound independent of outside vibrations
the mantra to awaken the chakra is shum the seventh Center
consciousness chakra this Center known as sahasrara is visualized as a lotus
flower at the crown of the head when the Lotus unfolds its petals the memory of
wholeness is restored you remember that your essential nature is unbounded and
that show our spirit in disguise as a person this is the full expression of
yoga the unification of being with action of universality with
individuality the law of pure potentiality governs the seventh chakra
when your roots are receiving nourishment from the earth in the first
chakra your creative juices are flowing in the second your intentions are
empowered in the third your heart is open and exchanging love with those
around you in the fourth you are spontaneously expressing your highest
self in the fifth and you are in touch with your inner voice in the sixth then
energy moves into the crown chakra and you remember your essential nature as
infinite and unbounded the thousand petals lotus flower unfolds and you know
yourself as a spiritual being temporarily localized to a body and mind
as you recognize the universality underlying your individuality you gain
access to your full potential your identity shifts from local to non-local
from constricted to expanded fear and anxiety dissipate because you lose your
attachment to specific outcomes trusting that the universe is unfolding in the
most evolutionary way possible the color of the seventh energy center is violet
it is associated with the sense of compassion that comes from recognizing
another as a reflection of yourself the sense is the inner light that radiates
from the eternal flame of sacred wisdom the mantra to nurture the seventh chakra
is ohm so hum meditation every meditation technique offers something of
value to the mind and body we believe that procedures that quiet
your mind allow you to glimpse the silent space between thoughts and help
expand consciousness and heal the body a very simple effective and easily learned
meditation technique uses the breath along with a breathing mantra to quiet
the mind and relax the body if you are unable to receive personal instruction
from a primordial sound meditation teacher the
so hum meditation described here will help shake your awareness from a
constricted to an expanded state of consciousness aligning you with the law
of pure potentiality we recommend that you practice this technique for 20 to 30
minutes twice daily we encourage you to perform it soon after awakening and
again before dinner although some people find that if they meditate before bed
they may have some difficulty getting to sleep you may find that by meditating at
bedtime you are able to turn off your mental turbulence from the day’s
activity and fall asleep easily after you have completed your meditation
practice 1 sit comfortably where you will not be disturbed
and close your eyes to for a few minutes simply observe the inflow and outflow of
your breath 3 now take a slow deep breath through your nose while thinking
the word so 4 exhale slowly through your nose while thinking the word hum 5 allow
your breathing to flow easily silently repeating so hum with each inflow and
outflow of your breath 6 whatever your attention drifts to thoughts in your
mind sounds in your environment or sensations in your body gently return to
your breath silently repeating so hum 7 continue this process for 20 to 30
minutes with an attitude of effortlessness and simplicity 8 when the
time is up sit with your eyes closed for a couple of minutes before resuming your
daily activity meditation experiences although you may have a variety of
experiences in your meditation practice it is easy to classify them into a few
basic categories mantra awareness your repetition of the Soham mantra should be
effortless silent repetition of the sound does not require clearly
pronouncing it in your mind rather have just a vague sense of the mantra as a
vibration and impulse or a subtle sound listen for its sound more than feel the
pressure to articulate it whenever the mantra appears to be changing in its
rate rhythm or pronunciation allow it to transform
now controlling the process thought awareness the most common complaint that
new meditators Express is that they are having too many thoughts thoughts are a
natural component of meditation and it is not possible to forcibly stop
thinking there will be many times in every meditation during which your mind
drifts off the mantra to thoughts you may find yourself thinking about
something that has happened in the past or something you are anticipating
happening in the future you may find yourself thinking about sensations in
your body or sounds in your environment during this period of meditation when
you become aware that your attention has drifted away from the mantra easily
shift it back whether you are thinking about what you want for lunch a movie
you saw yesterday an issue at work or some profound cosmic realization when
you recognize that you have drifted off into thinking about something anything
gently and without straining return your attention to the mantra sleep if your
body is fatigued when it is time to meditate you may drift off to sleep
don’t fight the urge to sleep meditation is an opportunity for your body / mind
to rebalance and if it needs to rest allow it to do so when you awaken set up
and meditate using your mantra for about 10 minutes if you find yourself falling
asleep in most of your meditations you are probably not getting enough rest at
night restful sleep is an important component of a balanced lifestyle be
sure that you are exercising regularly avoiding unnecessary stimulants during
the day and eliminating alcohol from your diet particularly before bed try to
be in bed with the lights off by 10 p.m. pure awareness as your mind quiets
during meditation you will experience moments when there is the absence of
thoughts with the retention of awareness we call this experience going into the
gap there is no mantra and there are no thoughts the mind has temporarily
relinquished its attachment to time and space and is immersed in the eternal
infinite realm of pure awareness this is the experience sometimes known as
Samadhi with regular practice the expensive awareness that your glimpse
during meditation begins to permeate your life outside of meditation the
relaxation gain while meditating extends into your
activity the ability to consciously experience non-local and local awareness
simultaneously is the essence of yoga established in a state of unity
consciousness while being fully engaged in the world of forms and phenomena all
of the seven spiritual laws are in play during meditation the process is
governed by the law of pure potentiality which takes your mind to the domain of
all possibilities beyond thought allowing mental activity to come and go
without restriction expresses the principle of the law of giving and
receiving not indulging in the meaning of the thoughts that arise allows you to
transcend the law of karma the core principle of meditation is the law of
least effort for the non-local field of awareness is also the domain of least
effort the state of non-local awareness beyond thought time space and causality
cannot be accessed through force you utilize the law of intention and desire
by having the intention to relinquish your need to control resist or
anticipate during the practice of meditation the law of detachment is
essential for the only way to get to the field of unbounded awareness is by
letting go finally the law of Dharma is active because it is the nature of the
mind to seek ever-expanding realms of bliss and wisdom it is the Dharma of the
mind to expand during meditation letting go and allowing the process to proceed
innocently is the proven technique of going beyond thought and quieting the
mind attention and intention meditation as you become adept at calming the
commotion in your mind through meditation you can enliven healing and
transformation in your body through conscious attention and intention as
we’ve said accomplished Yogi’s can regulate basic physiological functions
through inner techniques that focus attention and attention you can learn to
slow your heartbeat raise your body temperature and influence your
circulation try this simple attention and intention meditation to convince
yourself that your mind and body are intimately linked one sit comfortably
close your eyes and take a slow deep breath slowly exhale releasing any
tension you may be holding in your body for the next few
minutes practice the Soham meditation described
earlier or primordial sound meditation if you have been instructed in it too
now bring your attention into the area of your heart for a few moments simply
feel the sensations you are carrying in your heart and then for a few minutes
consider all the things for which you are grateful acknowledge everything in
your life for which you feel gratitude the people the love the experiences and
the opportunities that make you the person you are free now take a few
moments to relinquish any grievances regrets or hostility you may be holding
inside you simply have the intention to release all toxic feelings that are not
nourishing to your heart for next silently like a mantra repeat the
expression thy will be done thy will be done thy will be done have the intention
to surrender to whatever you imagine or believe is the underlying intelligence
of the universe be it God nature cosmic order or any other concept that you have
five now with your attention in your chest see if you can perceive the
throbbing of your heartbeat it’s either a sensation or a subtle vibration
introduce the intention for your heartbeat to slow down slow down slow
down 6 shift your attention to your hands and become aware of your heartbeat
in your hands have the intention to increase the blood flow and warmth to
your hands 7 now direct your attention to any part of your body that you
believe needs healing and filled your heart throbbing slowly in that area if
there is no place in your body that needs attention simply be aware of your
heart throbbing in your chest silently like a mantra repeat the phrase healing
and transformation healing and transformation healing and
transformation 8 after a few minutes bring your attention
to your breath simply observing the inflow and outflow of your breathing
when you are ready slowly open your eyes the yoga of meditation the apana shads
tell us as great as the infinite space beyond is the space within the Lotus of
the heart from the time of your birth you have been called to explore the
world outside of you meditation is the exploration of your inner world Yoga
encourages you to be as familiar with your inner world of thoughts feelings
memories desires and imagination as you are with the outer world of time space
and causality when you can move through both the inner and outer domains of life
with freedom and finesse you fulfill the highest purpose of yoga six moving
energy pranayama and banas why do you stay in prison when the door is so wide
open Rumi breath is the essence of life you inhale for the first time shortly
after arriving in the world even before your umbilical cord is cut from that
moment on you take approximately 17,000 breaths each day which over a lifetime
totals about 500 million breaths in your final moments on this planet you exhale
for the last time that breath defines the end of your life you’re breathing
supports every experience you have from the time of your first inhalation to
that of your last exhalation breath is life in yoga the breath is intimately
associated with prana which translates from Sanskrit into English as primordial
impulse prana is the primordial life force that governs all your mental and
physical functions it is the vital energy that animates inert molecules
into self-healing evolving biological beings it is the primary creative power
of the cosmos learning to regulate your prana to calm
balance cleanse and invigorate your body / mind is a powerful technique of yoga
your breath integrates many layers of your life your environment your
respiratory tract your nervous system your mind and every cell in your body
regulating your breath enhances your physical emotional and
well being it is the key to a healthy vibrant life for most people breathing
is the only autonomic nervous system function that they can influence modern
physiology divides the nervous system into two main components the voluntary
nervous system and the autonomic nervous system the voluntary nervous system is
active when you clap your hands wave your arms or use your legs to walk it is
responsible for activating the muscles that form the hundreds of facial
expressions you make in a day as well as those that control your speech although
many of these functions occur with only minimally conscious intention you have
the ability to initiate and stop the use of these muscle groups at will the
autonomic nervous system governs basic bodily functions which you usually have
no conscious ability to influence these include core physiological functions
such as heart rate blood pressure regulation of your temperature the
levels of hormones in your body perspiration and the movement of food
through your digestive tract your autonomic nervous system also plays an
important role in the regulation of your immune system
modern neurological science suggests that most people are incapable of
directly affecting these core physiological processes they function on
their own whether or not you are paying attention to them or attempting to alter
them most people do not know how to influence their blood pressure change
the flow of their blood reduce their sweating or affect their digestive
function studies of yoga practitioners however have found that with practice
people can learn to consciously decrease their blood pressure slow their heart
rate reduce their oxygen consumption alter their circulation and lower their
stress hormone levels learning to influence these usually automatic
functions is a different set of skills from those we use to ride a bicycle or
kick a soccer ball but it is one that you can master with a little practice
learning to regulate your breath is the first step in discovering how to
influence other essential involuntary bodily functions left on its own
breathing does not require your conscious attention to consume oxygen or
eliminate carbon dioxide this is a good thing day and night respiratory centers
deep in your brainstem monitor the level of gases in your body and automatically
adjust your breathing rate in depth as anyone with asthma can testify having to
pay attention to in order to get enough life-sustaining
oxygen into your body is not desirable every human being is capable of
temporarily overriding autonomic control over breathing by speeding up slowing
down or holding the breath conscious alteration of the usually automatic
breathing process is powerful effects on your mind and body and provides a window
into your ability to influence other autonomic functions while you have your
attention on your breath you can modify it but as soon as you relinquish
conscious control your involuntary nervous system resumes its authority
through the yogic practice of breathing exercises known as pranayama you can use
your breath to influence your physical and mental states a variety of
techniques to relax or invigorate your body / mind are described in yoga they
are easily mastered and have prompt and powerful effects pranayama breathing
exercises you can learn a lot about life by paying attention to your breathing
right now take a deep breath in and hold it feel the increasing discomfort that
builds as you resist the natural impulse to let go when it becomes too
uncomfortable release your breath and notice the immediate relief that you
feel holding on to anything when it is time to let go
creates distress in your body and mind now take a breath fully empty your lungs
and hold your breath become aware of the increasing discomfort that develops when
you resist something from entering your life that you are meant to accept notice
the relief that you feel less you take your next breath ingesting absorbing
releasing and eliminating these are the key components of a healthy life and of
natural balanced breathing when these basic functions are working well you are
able to absorb what you need and eliminate what you don’t resulting in
life-sustaining nourishment and detoxification when you take a bite of
an apple for example you ingest potential nourishment but the energy and
information contained within the food do not become available to you until you’ve
absorbed the basic nutrients through your small intestines in every substance
you ingest there are components that do not serve you so a healthy digestive
system releases the non nourishing remains of the food into your colon it
is to eliminate the residues of digestion
on a regular basis for you to remain healthy these same steps are applicable
on an emotional level when people engage in emotionally powerful relationships
they often ingest more emotional energy and information than they are capable of
digesting to maintain a healthy emotional life we must all selectively
absorb those aspects of the emotional experience that are nourishing while
releasing and eliminating those components that if retained could be
toxic the law of giving and receiving is in continuous play during the practice
of from a yama breathing exercises conscious breathing means focusing your
attention on the perpetual exchange that is taking place between your personal
body and the extended body of your environment you exchange ten billion
trillion atoms with your surroundings with every breath you take the atoms you
inhale every day have traversed the bodies of living beings across the
universe and across time within you right now you have carbon atoms that
once inhabited the body of a cheetah in Africa a dolphin in the South Pacific a
palm tree in Tahiti or in Australian Aborigine ultimately every particle in
your body was Stardust created at the dawn of the universe your
breathing is a continuous testimony to the law of giving and receiving
conscious breath work is also an expression of the law of least effort
and a lo of Dharma in a healthy body breathing is an effortless process
automatically speeding up or slowing down becoming deeper or shallower with
the subtle shift in your body’s requirements for energy the oxygen you
inhale supports the purpose Dharma of every cell in your body enabling each to
exercise its unique talent while serving the wholeness of the physiology on both
physical and emotional levels pranayama breathing exercises clear the channels
that enabled you to effortlessly exchange your personal energy with the
energy of the universe consciously directed your vital energy can be used
for creativity and healing pranayama breathing exercises our tools to help
you channel your vital force and evolutionary ways that bring you higher
levels of physical and emotional well-being bhastrika bellows breath
when you have a lot of energy moving through your body you naturally breathe
more vigorously you spontaneously move more air when you are exercising or
dancing because your body requires a greater quantity of oxygen to supply
your energy needs in the same way that invigorating action increases the depth
of your breathing you can consciously deepen your breathing resulting in
greater energy available to your body one of the most empowering breathing
exercises in yoga is known as bhastrika which translated into English means
bellows breath this is an energizing and cleansing breath although it is
generally a very safe technique it is important that you stay tuned into your
body during this process if at any time you experienced uncomfortable sensations
or feel light-headed during the process discontinue the bhastrika for a few
moments then resume the exercise in a less intense manner begin by relaxing
your shoulders and practicing slow deep abdominal breathing after a few deep
breaths fully exhale and then begin forceful complete accelerations followed
by forceful deep inhalations through your nose at the rate of 1 second per
cycle the entire breathing movement should be from your diaphragm
keep your head neck shoulders and chest relatively stable while your belly moves
in and out start with a round of 10 bhastrika breaths then resume normal
breathing and simply observe the sensations in your body after about 15
to 30 seconds begin the next round with 20 breaths if you feel light-headed or
experienced tingling in your fingers or around your mouth discontinue your deep
breathing and simply observe your normal quiet breathing until the sensations
completely subside then resume the process after a pause of 30 seconds
perform a third round of 30 breaths again suspend your bhastrika breathing
if you feel woozy after the third round simply witnessed the sensations in your
body for most people this breathing exercise creates the experience of
feeling energized and invigorated if you feel sluggish in the morning
perform a set of bhastrika breaths and you will feel the clouds clear from your
body in mind you can also perform a couple minutes of bhastrika during the
day if you are feeling drowsy or lethargic if you’re trying to lose
weight performing bhastrika several times per
day will increase your digestive power and help your metabolism burn more
intensely it is generally not recommended that you perform bhastrika
pranayama close to bedtime as you may have difficulty falling asleep
although bhastrika clears the mind it enlivens energy kapalabhati shining
breath a variation of the bellows breath is kapalabhati which involves forceful
exhalation followed by passive inhalations sitting comfortably with
your spine in an upright posture forcefully expel all the air from your
lungs then allow them to fill passively the primary movement is from your
diaphragm perform this movement 10 times then allow your breathing to return to
normal and observe the sensations in your body
repeat these cycles of 10 movements 3 to 4 times like bhastrika a Parvati is a
cleansing and invigorating pranayama Durga complete breath durga pranayama is
a cleansing and balancing breathing exercise that shows prompt benefits it
involves consciously filling 3 different areas of your lungs you start in the
lower chambers move up through the middle thoracic regions and finish with
the upper spaces this breathing technique is a simple expression of the
law of intention and desire simply by shifting your intention as to where to
direct your breath you will notice a deeply relaxing and releasing effect
perform durga pranayama either sitting upright or lying flat on your back both
the inhalations and exhalations are through your nostrils for the first
breath inhale slowly and deeply directing the air into your lower lungs
by consciously using your diaphragm when this is performed properly your belly
should inflate so you look like you’re a little pregnant
as you exhale deflate your belly as if air were escaping from a balloon repeat
this pattern several times drawing the air into your lungs lower chambers
maintaining smooth and rhythmic breathing after you are comfortable with
this first step begin bringing air into the middle section of your lungs start
by filling your lower regions as before then direct your inflow to your mid lung
region by opening your ribcage you will feel your ribs expanding
between your diaphragm and your chest inhale and exhale several times filling
both the bottom and middle areas of your lungs finally draw air into the bottom
and middle regions of your lungs then continue filling your upper lungs by
breathing into your collarbones clavicle practice the complete breath so your
inhalation and exhalation flow in a smooth continuous motion sequentially
directing your attention from your diaphragm to your ribs to your clavicle
envision this deep conscious breathing nourishing the organs tissues and cells
in your body enabling them to perform their vital functions effortlessly and
in accordance with their Dharma Wu Jie success breath the pranayama technique
known as oje can help settle your mind and body when you are feeling irritated
frustrated or overheated although the origins of the word are unclear one
interpretation is leading to success this breath allows you to stay focused
without generating unnecessary mental friction Wu Jie creates a cooling
influence at the back of the throat and has a balancing effect on the cardio
respiratory system to perform a je breath take a slightly deeper than
normal inhalation on the exhalation slightly constrict your throat muscles
so as you breathe out it sounds as if you are snoring the outflow of your
breath is through your nose with your mouth closed the result should be that
you sound like Darth Vader from Star Wars another way to get the hang of this
practice is to first exhale the sound ha with your mouth open now make a similar
sound with your mouth closed directing the outflow of air through
your nasal passages this should result in the desired breathy snoring sound
once you have mastered it on the out flow perform the same procedure on in
flow gently constricting your throat as you inhale try shifting into a Jo breath
whenever you find yourself becoming aggravated or upset and you will notice
a prompt soothing influence rajaiah is said to have a calming effect
on the body while it helps the mind to focus we recommend using vje while
performing your yoga poses to help you stay focused as you move from one
posture to the next huije can also be a useful tool during aerobic exercise
Olympic level athletes have introduced to je into their training routines to
enhance respiratory efficiency try using you je while performing your
cardiovascular workout and see if practicing this breath technique reduces
wear and tear on your body nadi shodhana channel clearing breath nadi shodhana
means clearing the channels of circulation and is sometimes known
descriptively as alternate nostril breathing this pranayama exercise has a
quieting effect and is very helpful in reducing mental turbulence associated
with anxiety and insomnia in nadi shodhana you use your right hand to
control the flow of breath through your nostrils your thumb is positioned over
the right nostril while your third and fourth fingers are over the left there
are several different styles of nadi shodhana all of which regulate the flow
of air through your nasal passages they differ according to how and when you
alter the breathing pattern the simplest procedure involves closing off alternate
nostrils at the end of each inhalation inhale deeply then close off the right
nostril with your thumb exhaling through the left smoothly inhale through the
left nostril and at the peak of the inflow close off your left nostril with
the third and fourth fingers of your right hand exhaling through the right
nostril after full exhalation inhale through the right nostril again closing
it off with your thumb at the peak of inhalation your breathing should be
effortless with your mind simply witnessing the process continue
performing nadi shodhana for the next few breaths following this pattern
inhaling through the left nostril exhaling through the right inhaling
through the right nostril exhaling through the left nadi shodhana has a
relaxing effect on your mind and body it can be useful to quiet your mind
prior to beginning mantra meditation or when your mind is racing when you are
trying to fall asleep by softening the breath through nadi shodhana
you invoke a state of calm inner awareness breath work in action they
come aware of your breathing throughout the day if you find yourself in a tense
or stressful situation consciously take some slow deep abdominal breaths through
your nose and notice how your entire bar relaxes practice urge ie breathing when
you are walking or exercising and notice how it brings you back to your Center
use the dagger breath when you are feeling pressure and strain to circulate
the life force throughout your body be conscious of your breath and your
awareness will stay centered in the midst of turbulence
according to yoga this is the true value of pranayama the bondas embracing your
vital energy the word bandha means to hold block or embrace these potent
practices train you to direct your prana or vital energy to different centers of
your body bond does provide direct demonstration of the law of Dharma as
you witnessed the immediate reactions in your body to specific actions you take
the basic principle with each bandha is first to accumulate energy in an area of
your physiology then release it this process of building a force and then
unleashing it discharges obstacles from the pathways of energy circulation like
traditional Chinese medicine Yoga envisions the body / mind as a network
of energetic channels through which lifeforce flows these pathways are known
as floaters and nahdi’s sorters are circulatory channels in the physical
body whereas Nadi’s exist in the subtle body health and vitality are dependent
upon life energy flowing freely through the physical and subtle biological
passageways jalandhar bandha chinlock sitting comfortably with your legs
crossed in front of you take a deep breath while exhaling bring your chin to
your chest pressing your chin into your chest inhale against your clothes throat
so that no air moves but your chest rises up hold this position for 10
seconds then raise your chin and inhale normally the word Jalandhar comes from
two routes jolla meaning network and data meaning upward flow jolanda is
designed to stimulate the network of nerves and energy channels in the throat
energy stagnation in this region is associated with chronic neck pain
hoarseness and thyroid imbalances Jalan Dada traditionally has been used to
strengthen the thyroid relieve neck stiffness and enhance mental clarity
Ludhiana bandha stomach lift sit comfortably with your legs
crossed and your spine upright Bend slightly forward placing your hands by
your sides or on your thighs bend slightly forward taking a deep breath
and completely exhale emptying your lungs as fully as possible make a motion
as if you were about to take another inhalation but instead lift your abdomen
so that you are forming a hollow below your diaphragm hold this position for
about 10 seconds then release and take a normal in breath repeat this motion
seven times this bandha activates the solar plexus energy center which governs
digestion and the ability to translate your desires into manifestations
blockages in this region are associated with digestive disturbances and
metabolic imbalances developing the ability to regulate energy in this area
of your body ensures that you have access to your core digestive fire when
your fire is burning brightly you are able to extract the nourishment you need
from your environment and discharge toxins that inhibit the flow or energy
in your body / mind mula bandha root lock sitting with your legs crossed
bring your right heel as close to your groin as you can with your eyes closed
begin contracting your anal sphincter muscles imagine as you are contracting
that you are drawing your rectum upward into your abdomen hold this position for
10 seconds and slowly release while you exhale repeat this process 10 times mula
means root the root chakra is the source of all energy in the body
learning to regulate prana in this region will enable you to consciously
direct your creative forces to the achievement of all your desires
performing this bandha can help with a wide range of health conditions
including hemorrhoids urinary incontinence and sexual function
problems pranayama exercises and bondas bring your attention into your body and
use your intention to move energy consciously all success in life derives
from this ability to consciously acquire store and release energy learning to
harness the power of your intention is the essence of the law of intention and
desire ability to your prana your life energy to eliminate
toxicity from your body enables you to do less and accomplish more not wasting
your energy resisting the flow of your lifeforce is the essence of the law of
least effort conscious breath work through pranayama and conscious energy
management through bondas teach you fundamental skills in governing the
vital energy in your body pranayama breathing exercises and energy
regulating bondas are fundamental practices that teach you how to manage
your life energy efficiently and effectively the practice of yoga is
practice for life learning these fundamental skills will serve you in all
aspects of your life part 3 yoga practice 7 consciousness in
motion yoga asanas your body is precious it is your vehicle for awakening treated
with care siddhartha gautama as you are listening to these words bring your
attention into your body without moving notice your posture how are you sitting
are your legs crossed are you in a comfortable position is there a part of
you that is straining now make any adjustments in your position to enhance
your comfort level this is yoga changing your posture as a result of bringing
your awareness into your body is the practice of yoga the feedback loop is
completed as changing your posture results in a spontaneous shift in your
awareness Yoga is good for your mind and good for your body of the three
important components of a balanced fitness program flexibility strength and
cardiovascular conditioning Yoga directly provides the first two and has
the potential to enhance the third scientific studies on the health
benefits of yoga have found that it can be useful in a wide range of conditions
including hypertension asthma depression arthritis heart disease epilepsy and
cancer in the seven spiritual laws of yoga program we have chosen postures to
expand your flexibility strengthen your muscles and improve your balance each of
the seven spiritual laws enlivens the practice of yoga while the practice of
yoga enlivens your awareness of the seven spiritual laws
whether you are a beginning or an experienced yoga practitioner this
program will energize your body while taking your mind to a more expanded
state of awareness body awareness poses we’ll begin with postures that have the
main purpose of enlivening body awareness the word for position in yoga
is asana which means seat and asana is a position that you assume consciously
Yoga is the practice of consciously choosing the seats you assume although
on one level this means the physical position you place your body in on
another level it implies that ultimately you choose
every position in life in which you find yourself yoga then becomes a practice
for making your choices more consciously so that the consequences of them are
success and Happiness as a human being you have a built-in mechanism to
evaluate the choices you make in your life which is by listening to the
signals of comfort or discomfort that your body generates as you consider your
options this is the essence of the law of karma which utilizes body awareness
to make karmically correct choices learning to trust the feedback your body
provides will enhance your ability to make comically correct choices in life
there are two important benefits of practicing yoga poses that enhance
mind-body integration the first is that yoga postures enabled you to be more
aware of the signals your body is sending so you can interpret them
accurately it is easy for human beings to be so immersed in their minds that
they lose awareness of their bodies the body is sending signals of what it needs
but the mind is too preoccupied to notice the signs the practice of yoga
enables you to reduce the mental background noise so you can pay
attention to the messages of your body the second benefit of yoga is that
regular practice of these poses will enhance your general level of physical
and emotional comfort if the background state of your body is one of chronic
discomfort it cannot be a reliable instrument by which you evaluate your
choices when using your body as an instrument for making choices the subtle
sensations of comfort and discomfort provide the guidance for right action if
your baseline state is disturbed you will not be able to notice the shifts
your body takes when sitting different choices helping your
body release obstacles that impede the healthy flow of life energy is a great
benefit of practicing yoga postures practitioners at all levels can perform
these body awareness poses it is important to remember that Yoga is not a
competitive sport the goal of yoga is to enhance the connection between your body
mind and spirit the precise performance of a posture is
of secondary importance to mind-body integration stay fully present as you
move through these postures gently moving into and then through your body’s
resistance paavana macht asana wind-relieving pose
begin by lying on your back allowing your awareness to flow through your body
if you notice any area of tension in this resting pose have the intention to
release it now taking a deep breath and bring your right knee up to your chest
grasp your leg below the knee with both hands and gently bring your chin to your
knee hold this position for a few moments breathing easily and feeling the
sensations in your body after several breaths slowly straighten your leg
exhaling as you return it to the floor repeat the pose with your left knee
bending it to your chest as you inhale while raising your chin to your knee
again breathe easily for a few moments then slowly lower your head and leg to
the floor while exhaling now while inhaling lift both knees up to your
chest grasping both of your legs with your coupled hands hold for several
moments easily inhaling and exhaling and being aware of the sensations in your
spine now holding both of your legs below the knees gently rock backward and
forward three or four times then gently Rock side to side several times
returning to your back gently begin bicycling motions with your legs placing
your hands by your sides extend first one leg than the other inhale and exhale
in rhythm with each leg extension after about half a minute return both legs to
the floor these are useful starting poses for
begin mobilizing energy in the body according to Ayurveda yoga’s sister
branch of Vedic science the vital heirs of the body known collectively as vai
you are the basis for all movement via governs the movement of thought the
movement of air the movement of muscles the movement of blood and the movement
of elimination on a cellular level it regulates the movement of DNA molecules
the movement of proteins and the movement of hormones health results when
value is moving harmoniously vaio has a natural likeness which naturally impels
it to move in an upward direction when vaio is disrupted as a result of
stressful experiences its job of eliminating toxins down and out from the
body is impaired impairment and the elimination function of value results in
energy stagnation and the accumulation of subtle toxicity in the body these
wind-relieving pose ‘as bring value back to its appropriate home in the pelvis so
it can perform its essential duty of moving toxins down and out of the body
Sarvangasana shoulderstand while still on the floor with your hands alongside
your body slowly raise your legs so they are perpendicular to the floor gently
roll your way down to your upper back as you elevate your hips supporting them
with both of your hands keep your upper arms and elbows on the floor the back of
your head and neck remain flat on the floor find a point of comfortable
balance into which you can relax inhale and exhale slowly and deeply in this
position halasana plough pose from the shoulder stand
gently lower your legs over and behind your head so you are touching the floor
with your toes if you cannot bring them all the way to the floor lower them as
far as you can place your arms alongside you breathing easily and feel the
stretch in your spine and thighs bring your attention to your breathing and
practice you je pranayama in this pose audibly inhaling and exhaling with
slightly constricted throat muscles slowly alternate between the shoulder
stand and the plow pose three or four times
these two poses are beneficial for massaging the visceral organs and toning
the thyroid gland now slowly lower both legs back to the floor resting
comfortably on your back witness your breath while feeling the sensations in
your body the shoulder stand and plow poses circulate energy up and down your
spine when you first try the shoulder pose you
may find that your center of gravity is in your hips and buttocks and you may
have difficulty maintaining your legs over your head with repeated practice
you will feel increasing comfort bringing your legs over your head and
maintaining your balance with little effort you may initially have difficulty
flexing enough for your toes to touch the floor after a few rounds of doing
the shoulder stand alternating with the plow it will be easier for you to obtain
full benefit from both poses bhujangasana cobra pose roll from your
back onto your stomach bring your legs and feet together with your toes
slightly pointed place your palms beneath your shoulders and while
inhaling gently begin raising your eyes then your head then your chest upward
off the floor as much as possible use your spinal muscles rather than your
arms to lift yourself up your lower abdomen should remain on the floor
inhale as you rise and exhale as you lower yourself back down repeat this
several times then lower your chest to the floor salabhasana locust pose from
your stomach roll onto your side make two fists side by side below your groin
with your arms straight now roll back onto your stomach with your arms beneath
your chest and abdomen as you inhale lift your right leg off the floor hold
it for a few moments then lower it while exhaling repeat this motion with your
left leg if you are able to perform this fairly easily try raising both legs off
the floor together keeping your knees together inhale while you are lifting
hold for several moments then lower both legs to the floor dhanurasana bow pose
lying on your chest and abdomen with your forehead on the floor tune into
your body breathing easily now slowly and deeply inhaling reach
behind you and grasp both ankles with your hands raise your head and chest off
the floor while pulling your ankles up and toward your head lift your knees and
thighs off the floor and look upward hold this position for several deep
breaths then gradually lower your legs and chest to the floor as you exhale
these three postures cobra locust and bow extend your spine to increase
backwards strength and flexibility modern life has a tendency to constrict
the spine with the prolong sitting at work and while traveling in your car or
in an airplane as a result of this habit of constriction breathing becomes
shallower and subtle anxiety is experienced consciously extending the
spine counterbalance the restriction born of repeated flexion and has a
noticeable effect on both physical and emotional well-being these postures have
a direct effect on improving spinal health our spines consist of bony spinal
vertebrae separated by shock-absorbing discs when you perform a posture that
extends the spine the pressure is placed on the back part of the vertebral body
which has the effect of pushing the discs forward into their normal and
healthy position the muscles that run along the spine are strengthened through
these poses so that less weight is borne directly by the discs for people
troubled by chronic back pain due to bulging vertebral discs the cobra locust
in BO poses helped normalize the anatomy and reduce back discomfort Janice Hersch
asana bent knee forward bend rolling to your back assume an upright
sitting position with your legs out in front of you now I’ll bend your right
knee and pull your foot tightly into your groin raising both hands over your
head exhale while slowly flexing forward at the waist reaching forward to grasp
your left ankle or foot if you cannot bend forward far enough to reach your
foot hold your leg as far down as you can without straining in this position
use your breath to consciously release further into the pose having the
attention to relax with each exhalation hold this position
breathing deeply for several moments then slowly release
repeat the pose with your left knee bent flexing forward to grasp your right
ankle or foot again find your point of resistance then introduce the intention
to surrender using your breath to release more deeply into the pose listen
to the information your body is sending to you
this posture provides a stretch to the hamstring muscles at the back of the leg
opening these muscles through this pose translates into a more fluid gate but
Mehsana Lotus mudra cross both legs in front of you with your right ankle
resting on your left thigh if you can bring your left ankle onto your right
thigh assuming a full lotus position if you do not yet have the flexibility in
your hips and legs to achieve a full Lotus remain in a half Lotus with your
left ankle beneath your right thigh now flex forward at the waist until you were
resting your lower abdomen on your thighs relax into this pose for several
slow deep breaths grasp your hands together behind you and slowly lift your
arms upward keeping them straight hold this position for 10 seconds breathing
deeply then lower your arms and slowly return to a sitting position the classic
lotus pose opens the pelvis and hips flexing forward and lotus increases the
stretch in your hips and groin try switching the leg that is on top and
notice how you are able to flex forward more easily each time root blue tea
uplifting pose continue sitting with your legs crossed and fuller half Lotus
place your hands flat on the floor on both sides of your thighs lift your
entire body off the floor and hold for 10 seconds then gently lower yourself to
the floor this posture requires some upper-body strength
at first you may have difficulty raising your entire body if so allow your knees
to remain on the floor while you raise your buttocks maintaining an upright
pose practice shifting your center point until you feel stable if you practice
the uplifting pose daily you will begin lifting your entire body off the floor
within two weeks remember that the primary purpose of this pose is to bring
your attention inward enhancing the communication between the
mind and the body balancing poses a healthy life is a life in balance
yoga practice offers an opportunity for learning about dynamic balance
maintaining mind-body balance provides the best platform to make karmically
correct choices enabling you to perform actions in the most efficient way a life
in balance is a life in Dharma for every action supports the evolutionary flow of
life in which minimal resistance and maximum success are generated a balanced
mind recognizes that we have control over the choices we make but not over
the consequences of the choices putting your attention on the action rather than
focusing on the fruits of action is the key to successful living Yoga offers the
opportunity to develop a balanced mind by bringing your attention into a pose
while relinquishing your attachment to the outcome bringing balance into your
body will awaken balance in your mind just as bringing your mind into balance
will assist you in finding physical balance the next set of postures is
designed to awaken balance in your body and mind learning to maintain stillness
in your body will help you cultivate stillness in your mind at first these
balancing poses may be challenging for you but if you practice them regularly
you will find them becoming easier each day until you have mastered them notice
how achieving stillness in your body spontaneously supports mental stillness
Bert’s asana tree pose practicing this pose will help you develop the stability
of a tree stand with your feet together and your arms resting comfortably by
your sides close your eyes and become aware of your body’s natural self
balancing movements these subtle shifts in the activation of different muscle
groups to keep you from falling are being orchestrated by an elaborate
neuromuscular system balance centers in your inner ear and brain are
continuously communicating with your postural muscles helping you overcome
the gravitational force that is trying to bring you down to the ground feel the
law of least effort and the law of Dharma at work within you as you witness
the perpetual adjustments that are occurring without your conscious input
now open your eyes and bend your right knee
bringing the sole of your right foot as high as possible onto your left thigh
hold this position until you feel steady then while balancing on your left leg
raise your arms over your head until your palms are together look straight
ahead breathing easily and hold the pose until
you barely require any adjustment to maintain your balance lower your right
leg to the floor close your eyes and again bring your attention into your
body tuning into your sense of balance and noticing any subtle changes that may
have occurred as a result of holding the tree pose now bring the sole of your
left foot onto the inner aspect of your right thigh as high as possible
balancing on your right leg maintain stillness for about 10 seconds then
return your left leg to the floor practice the tree post whenever your
mind is turbulent you will notice that as you bring your attention into the
present moment your body becomes still and your mind quiets a quad asana
one-foot posture standing with your feet together extend both arms in front of
you so your palms are facing downward with your index fingers together
balancing on your right leg partially bend your left knee bringing
your left leg in front of you find your point of stillness while maintaining
balance on your right leg once you feel stable slowly bring your left leg behind
you while flexing at the waist until your left leg is extended out parallel
to the floor while you balance on your right leg your arms remain in front of
you with your palms facing the floor bring your attention to your breath as
you find your center point of stillness hold this pose for about 10 seconds then
slowly return your leg to the floor and resume standing with your arms at your
sides close your eyes for a few moments checking in with your body
repeat the posture with your left leg on the floor first finding your balance
with your right leg in front of you then slowly bringing it behind you as you
gently lean forward with your arms reaching forward slowly return to a
standing position with both feet on the floor there will be times when your one
pointed attention locks into pose and body and mind come together
this is the essence of yoga you are in present moment awareness and there is
effortless communication between your body and your mind trikonasana triangle pose from a
standing pose spread your legs apart so your feet are a little less than twice
as wide as your shoulders while inhaling raise both arms straight up to shoulder
height so they are parallel to the floor turn your left foot ninety degrees
outward and bending from the waist slide your left arm down your left leg until
you could grasp your ankle just above your foot if you cannot reach this far
grab hold of your leg as far down as you can reach bring your right arm up so it
is straight and pointing directly toward the ceiling look up toward your reaching
hand hold this triangle posture breathing deeply for five or six breaths
then gradually return to an upright position with your arms outstretched
close your eyes and check in with your body for a few moments repeat the pose
with the opposite arm and leg turn your right foot outward ninety degrees and
then slide your right arm down your leg grasping your ankle while your left arm
is pointing straight up take several slow deep breaths before returning to an
upright position the classical triangle pose enlivens both balance and
flexibility use this post to open your chest stretching while maintaining your
balance is a great skill to develop in your yoga practice and in your life dun
de llamada konasana standing angle pose standing with your legs apart and your
arms outstretched at shoulder height parallel to the floor slowly bend
forward grasping your ankles with your hands if you cannot reach as far as your
ankles grasp your legs as close to your ankles as you can now gently pull your
head down toward the floor while you press your hips upward hold
this position for about 10 seconds while slowly inhaling and exhaling using your
breath to surrender further into the pose slowly return to an upright
position take a few deep breaths then Pete the standing angle pose two more
times notice how each time you go into this posture it becomes easier to
perform flexion into this pose is initiated from your hips
you will feel stretching in your groin and lower spine
if you cannot grasp your ankles try resting your hands on the floor in front
of you and gradually walk them back towards your feet
this pose allows you to see the world from a different angle one of the
benefits of yoga practice every person is a point of perspective and it is easy
for each of us to become attached to our particular point of view over time this
contributes to rigidity and judgment looking for opportunities to see the
world from a new perspective nurtures flexibility in mind and body dande
Yamana dhanurasana standing bow pose stand with your feet together with both
arms straight in front of you palms facing downward bending your left knee
reach behind you with your left hand and grasp your left ankle flexing forward at
the waist pull your left leg upward as far as you can comfortably stretch it
keeping your right hand forward and parallel to the floor you should feel a
stretch in your thigh muscles if you cannot maintain your balance without
holding on grab onto the back of a chair with your hand until you find your
Center hold this pose for 10 seconds then release your left leg and allow it
to return to the floor repeat the pose on the opposite side starting with your
feet together and hands outstretched then reach back grasping your right
ankle with your right hand while you keep your left arm outstretched in front
palm facing downward hold this balancing pose for about 10 seconds then slowly
return to a standing position the metaphor of the bow is used widely in
yoga to hit the target you’re aiming at you must first pull back to a still
point that is full with potential there is a classic Vedic story of an archery
class in which Arjuna with his brothers and cousins are receiving instructions
from the master archer Drona in a distant tree Drona had placed a wooden
bird onto she had painted an artificial eye he
then asked each young man in succession to pull back an arrow but not release it
until the student described what he was seeing the first apprentice said that he
saw the bird the tree the surrounding land and the other students standing
around him Jonah told him to put down the bowl without launching the arrow
each subsequent student responded similarly upon being asked the same
question when it was our juniors turn his response was all I see is the eye of
the bird when asked by Drona don’t you see the bird the trees and the
surrounding people our jr. replied no guru all I can see is the eye at this
response Drona instructed him to release the arrow which struck a bull’s eye the
technology for success in life is first to pull back to a still quiet inner
place from which you can become clear about your goal and then act with the
full power of your intention in yoga the bow poses remind you to dive deep within
yourself to find your quiet unbounded state of awareness when you act from
this expanded domain of consciousness your intentions will be powerful and
success will be more likely garudasana eagle pose most people find the Eagle
pose challenging when they first try it but it usually can be mastered within a
short period of time standing with your feet together bend both knees then shift
your weight to your left foot cross your right leg around the front of your left
until you can hook your toes inside your left calf muscle you will need to keep
your left knee bent to achieve this while your legs are wrapped and
maintaining your balance bend your right elbow and cross your left arm between
your right arm and your chest place the fingers of your right hand onto the palm
of your left hand and point your fingertips to the ceiling hold this
twisted pose for 10 seconds then unwind repeat this balancing posture on the
opposite side by shifting your weight to your right foot and wrapping your left
leg around your right hooking your left toes inside your right calf this time
wind your right arm around your left so that the fingers of your left hand
rest in your right palm the opposite leg and arm are on top in vedic mythology
Garuda is the eagle God half bird and half man he’s frequently shown carrying
vishnu that God who maintains the universe
garuda is known as the destroyer of obstacles to the fulfillment of desires
develop the focused attention and balance required to master the Eagle
pose and obstacles will dissipate from your life practice these balancing poses
on a regular basis and in addition to mastering the postures you will find it
easier to maintain your balance in all situations in your life an underlying
fundamental principle of yoga is the relationship between the individual and
the cosmos between the microcosm and the macrocosm the skills gained during the
practice of yoga translate into life skills everyone can benefit from greater
balance in life Yoga in motion salutations to the Sun the twelve poses
of the Sun Salutations offer an opportunity to enhance flexibility and
strength while improving circulatory health the set of postures has been
described as the most complete exercise available so if you have only limited
time for yoga the Sun Salutations are your best choice through the twelve
poses of the Sun Salutations all major muscle groups and all major joints are
exercised these poses also massage and stimulate your major internal organs
these postures are designed to awaken the connection between your Agni or
inner fire and that of the Sun the word Agni is the root of the English word
ignite when your Agni is burning brightly you are capable of digesting
the energy and information you ingest on a daily basis be it food ideas or
emotional experiences when your inner fire is weak and sputtering you do not
fully metabolize your daily life experiences the residues of incomplete
metabolism are stored in your body / mind leading to fatigue and weakened
immunity when practice along with following a healthy diet a good daily
routine and the conscious avoidance of physical and emotional toxicity the Sun
Salutations are designed to Kindle you’re in
fire so you can radiate the best of who you are the poses of Surya Namaskar
represent the full experience of human life with all its highs and lows and ins
and outs traditionally performed at sunrise and sunset the postures
represents the metabolism of the sun’s energy into life energy the Sun is the
source of all life on this planet ultimately we are beings of light and
the Sun Salutations acknowledge this primordial connection perform slowly the
12 poses encourage flexibility and strength performed rapidly the Sun
salutes can provide a vigorous cardiovascular workout along with each
posture of Surya Namaskar is a mantra that awakens an aspect of
the energy of the Sun say these sounds as you perform each pose and your mind
will quiet and expand while you focus on the posture one Branum asana Salutation
pose begin with your feet firmly planted on the ground in the salutation pose
inhaling and exhaling easily allow your attention to go inside and become aware
of the current level of energy in your body the mantra for the salutation pose
acknowledges the unconditional life-giving power of the Sun this pose
resonates with the heart chakra and the law of giving and receiving the mantra
for the salutation pose is ohm matreya namaha – hasta utanasana sky reaching
pose with your buttock muscles tightened begin stretching up toward the sky while
inhaling into the sky reaching pose stretch upward through your back chest
arms and neck the mantra for this pose acknowledges the darkness dispelling
power of the Sun this pose awakens the throat chakra of expression and the law
of detachment the mantra for this pose is ohm Ravi a namaha 3 pada haast asana
hand – feet pose next chetley stretch forward while exhaling place your hands
on the outsides of your feet gently pressing your head toward your knees
bend your knees as much as you need to in the hand – feet pose
in this forward flexion you balance the extension of the previous pose the
mantra for this pose acknowledges the continuous movement of the Sun which
induces daily and seasonal rhythms it is associated with the creativity chakra
and the law of least effort the mantra for this pose is ohm sori ayah namaha
for a schwa sanchalan asana equestrian pose now stretch back your right leg
while looking upward breathing easily in the equestrian pose the mantra
acknowledges the wisdom that dawns when light is brought out to a subject it is
associated with the chakra of intuition in the law of dharma the mantra for this
pose is ohm and Ave namaha five parvata Salah Mountain Pose
next move into the Mountain Pose with both legs straight and together raising
your buttocks into the air stretching your arms the mantra for this pose
celebrates the unlimited power of the Sun it is associated with the throat
chakra of expression and the law of detachment the mantra for the Mountain
Pose is ohm hi guya namaha six athon gah Namaskar
eight limbs pose from this position lower yourself gently to the ground
touching your forehead chest and knees to the floor while maintaining the bulk
of your weight on your hands and toes this is the eight limbs pose the mantra
acknowledges the nourishment the Sun provides to all living beings on earth
it is associated with the solar plexus energy chakra and the law of intention
and desire the mantra for the eight limbs pose is ohm push nee-naw maha
seven bhujangasana cobra pose move directly into the cobra pose
rising off the ground using primarily your back and chest muscles do not
overextend by pushing off with your hands the mantra for this pose
acknowledges the inner light that is reflected in the outer light of the Sun
this pose resonates with the creativity chakra and the law of least effort the
mantra for the Cobra pose is ohm Hiranya garbha namaha return
cycle the second half of the Sun Salutations is a retracing of the first
half eighth planet asana mountain pose return again to the mountain pose this
time introducing the mantra Omari ta na ma ha which acknowledges the
transformational power of the Sun the Sanskrit name for black pepper is Mara
ch it is believed to contain large amounts of solar energy 9 our schwa
sanchalan asana equestrian pose then move into the equestrian pose this time
with your left leg back this mantra o medicina maha acknowledges the maternal
nurturing aspect of the Sun 10 padahastasana hand to feet pose continue
the cycle by moving into the hand to sheet pose using the mantra om Sri Sri
anama ha which acknowledges the stimulating power of the Sun 11 hasta
with an asana sky reaching pose then move into the sky reaching pose reciting
the mantra ohm or kya namaha which acknowledges the energizing aspect of
the Sun 12 pranam asana Salutation pose
finally return to the beginning by moving back into the salutation pose
using the mantra om barskaya namaha which acknowledges the aspect of the Sun
that Kindles the memory of wholeness the speed and vigour of the poses should be
adjusted to suit your body type it’s best to start with a total of 10 sets as
you become more comfortable you can gradually increase the number breathe in
harmony with the movements so that you’re inhaling each time the body is
extended and exhaling each time you move into flexion the postures are most
beneficial when performed in a smooth flowing sequential manner according to
yoga if you do the Sun Salutations every day of your life your mind will remain
alert and vibrant and your body will be light and flexible Sun Salutations in a
chair we believe that the Sun Salutations provides such benefit and we
developed a modified version that can be performed in a chair you can perform
these modified Sun Salutations while riding is a passenger in a car on an
extended road trip sitting at your desk at work or flying in an airplane these
poses relieve tension in your spine enhance circulation and ease soreness in
your muscles begin with the salutation posed by sitting comfortably in your
chair with your spine upright and your hands at your chest breathing easily
inhaling reach upward with both hands into the sky reaching pose extending
your spine bending forward into the hand to feet pose lay your chest on your
knees and allow your hands to rest alongside your feet exhale arching your
back into the extension pose similar to the equestrian pose pull your left knee
up while looking toward the ceiling inhale partially exhale while bringing
your chin down towards your left knee into the flexion pose similar to the
Mountain Pose gently rolling your back forward again flex forward into the hand
to feet pose with your chest on your knees and your
hands on the floor next to your feet exhale fully with your hands and arms
remaining down by your legs arch your back and neck into the cobra pose while
inhaling partially now fully inhale as you bring your right knee up into the
extension pose similar to the equestrian pose while extending your back and a
gentle arch partially exhale as you bend forward into the flexion pose similar to
the mountain pose bringing your chin to your right knee fully exhaling bend
forward into the hand to feet pose with your chest on your knees your neck
flexed and your arms alongside your legs stretch upward into the sky reaching
pose extending your spine while fully inhaling return to the resting
Salutation pose with your hands at your chest breathing easily energy opening
poses life energy flows up and down the spinal
column in yoga the seven chakras are connected through three energetic
pathways known as EDA pingala and sushumna the
Cary’s prana through the left side of the body conducting feminine lunar
energy when you are breathing through your left nostril
you’re either channel is open and receptive energy is active in your body
/ mind Pingala is the conduit for energy on the right side of the body
transmitting masculine solar energy when you are breathing through your right
nostril your active goal-directed energy is more dominant sushumna runs up the
middle of the body providing the connection between the root chakra at
the base of the spine and the Lotus Center at the crown of the head when
these channels are open vital energy is able to flow freely the vital energy
rising up through the spine is known as the awakening of Kundalini sometimes
visualized as the uncoiling of a snake at the base of the spine
these final poses are designed to release congestion in the spine enabling
prana to nourish every organ tissue and cell in your body MOT C&R asana spinal
twist lord of the fish pose sit on the floor with your legs out in front of you
bend your left leg and place your foot on the floor next to your right thigh
place your right arm around your left knee and hold your right knee while
twisting your spine to the left hold this position
breathing easily with every exhalation allow yourself to surrender into the
pose return to the midline and repeat the posture on the other side by bending
your right leg and placing your right foot on the floor next to your left
thigh place your left arm around your right knee while twisting your spine to
the right again breathe easily into the pose using your breath to increase your
flexibility as you become more flexible reach around and grasp the ankle of the
foot that is placed on the floor hold for 10 seconds then return to Center
close your eyes for a few moments and put your attention on your spine
envision the life force flowing up from the base of your spine through your
pelvis into your abdomen up through your heart through your throat between your
eyes and into your head imagine the thousand petal lotus flower
at your crown chakra opening activate the intention
to live your life from a more expanded state of awareness as a result of energy
flowing freely through your body according to Vedic mythology
Lord Shiva was instructing his consort parvati and the essence of yoga on the
shore of a remote island she even noticed that a fish was listening
intently to the discourse moved by the fishes concentration Shiva gave a
blessing over the aquatic animal enabling it to assume a celestial form
whom Shiva named Matt Sandra or lord of the fishes this pose is named in honor
of this unusual sentient being chakrasana kneeling wheel from the
spinal twist pose roll your legs around so that you are on your knees with your
feet close together behind you arch your back and grasp to your right angle with
your right hand and your left ankle with your left hand raise your hips up toward
the ceiling while allowing your head to relax backwards breathe easily in this
position for about 10 seconds then slowly lower your hips and raise
yourself up so you are again resting on your knees close your eyes and with your
attention in your spine envision energy moving up from your base to your skull
this pose opens the pelvis and the spine strengthening the neck and back muscles
be conscious of your breath while holding this pose having the intention
to expand your chest with each deep inhalation while you stretch upward in
addition to forming the shape of a wheel chakra this pose activates each energy
center Vajrasana diamond pose beginning on your knees with your body upright
gently lower yourself down until you are sitting on your heels rest in this
position for a few moments then lift yourself off your heels again allow
yourself to settle onto your heels become aware of your breathing and allow
yourself to relax more deeply with each breath activating the law of intention
and desire and vision energy freely flowing up your spine this is an
energizing pose that awakens energy in the lower chakras with practice you will
see increasing flexibility in your hips knees and ankles
it provides benefits for people suffering with digestive disturbances
and hemorrhoids the diamond is the precious gem that has
the highest spiritual frequency representing purity and eternity it has
the ability to cut through almost everything else in the world the diamond
pose awakens the balanced state of mind-body integration that allows you to
cut through ignorance with the wisdom of the infinite and unbounded field of life matsyasana fish pose the fish pose
provides a similar stretch to the spine as the diamond pose but it is a little
easier for most people not to be confused with the Lord of the fish pose
masya opens the chest allowing for greater long narration it is classically
performed in a full lotus position but it can also be done in half Lotus
sitting comfortably in the Lotus posture gently lower your back so you are lying
on the floor with your crossed legs in the air
place your palms flat on the floor just underneath your buttocks
while arching your back lower your cross legs to the floor resting on your bent
elbows and forearms continue arching your back until the crown of your head
is on the floor breathe easily while holding this position for 15 seconds
then lower your back to the floor and slowly uncross your legs if you are
unable to get into a full Lotus you can perform a simpler modification of the
fish pose lying on your back bend your knees and bring your heels as close as
you can to your buttocks bear your weight on your elbows and forearms while
arching your back until you are able to rest the top of your head on the floor
feeling the stretch in your back and neck hold this posture for 15 seconds
then slowly lower your back and then your legs to the ground ball asana
child’s pose nearly on the floor overlap your big toes and sit on your heels
separate your knees and slowly bend forward until you are resting your body
between your thighs lay your hands on the floor alongside your torso palms up
and release your shoulders toward the floor rest your forehead on the floor
and breathe easily the child’s pose is a comfortable resting posture that allows
you to quiet your mind as you’re by settles into deeper relaxation in many
ways it is the asana equivalent of the fetal position bring the law of least
effort into your awareness as you surrender into the Child’s Pose feeling
the sense of inner safety that this posture generates children are flexible
and have an amazing capacity to adapt to changing situations even as they have
limited ability to control the course of their own lives despite the fact that
they are subject to the will of adults who direct their lives children are able
to find joy in their present moment flexibility and adaptability are
valuable qualities that yoga can cultivate to re-establish some of the
resiliency of youth Carl Jung once said that as children we have unconscious
perfection as adults we become conscious of our imperfection finally with wisdom
we achieve a state of conscious perfection the child’s pose provides an
opportunity to quiet the mind relax the body and celebrate the state of
conscious perfection whenever you feel that the demands of the world are
becoming too burdensome assume this pose and allow the law of least effort and
the law of detachment to spontaneously awaken within you Yoga in action the
human body is designed for movement when you are able to move freely effortlessly
and in harmony with your environment you experience joy and vitality on all
levels of life this is the highest expression of the law of Dharma
established in a state of expanded inner awareness you perform activity with
dynamic ease the regular practice of yoga enables you to expand your
limitations as the body becomes more flexible the mind becomes more flexible
as the body gains strength the mind gains strength as you learn to maintain
a centered state of balance physically you spontaneously feel more centered and
balanced mentally and emotionally according to the seven spiritual laws
you have the potential to create a magnificent life filled with wisdom
success and love the creative cauldron of pure potentiality resides within you
in the domain of silence at the source of your mind and body you can access
this field through the stillness cultivated in your practice of yoga
boy in life flows from the effortless giving and receiving that derives from a
deep connectedness to spirit every breath and movement you perform in yoga
reminds you to allow vital energy to flow freely between your personal body
and your extended body spontaneously awakening the law of giving and
receiving in your life the law of karma reminds you that every action has its
reaction performing actions consciously in your yoga practice ensures that the
reactions generated by your choices are more likely to be evolutionary for you
and for those around you opening to the possibility that you don’t have to
struggle so hard to achieve your goals is the essence of the law of least
effort every practice session of yoga remind you of this basic principle if
you force yourself into a posture you will almost certainly pay the price the
next day of decreased rather than increased flexibility Yoga is practiced
for living life with finesse your intentions orchestrate their fulfillment
become aware of the law of intention and desire in your yoga practice as you move
into every posture introduce your intention and then let go it is this
paradoxical coexistence of the law of intention and desire along with the law
of detachment that taps into the power of nature to support your deepest
aspirations every moment is as it should be from the beginning of time and space
the universe has been unfolding as through unfathomable multidimensional
coincidences struggling against this moment is struggling against the entire
universe the practice of yoga awakens the law of Dharma in your life by
teaching you to feel your way your body is capable of calculating the most
evolutionary choices available to you at every moment you simply need to be able
to listen to the signals it is sending you in its desire to support your
happiness and health a yogic practice eliminates the static and the
communication lines between your mind and body the clarity flexibility balance
strength and centered awareness that you cultivate while practicing your postures
will serve your will throughout your day and throughout your life 8:07 spiritual laws of yoga session we
have what we seek it is there all the time and if we give it time it will make
itself known to us Thomas Merton you now have all the components for the complete
seven spiritual laws of yoga program the full program is designed to take your
body and mind from a state of deep silence through conscious breathing into
positions that enhance flexibility strength and balance vigorous
performance of the Sun Salutations will also help condition your cardiovascular
system while Energy governing exercises enabled you consciously to channel your
vital force after performing the physical techniques we encourage you to
spend a few minutes bringing the spiritual law of the day into your
awareness so it remains lively throughout the day the major facets of
the program include pranayama breathing exercises meditation flexibility
postures balance postures Sun Salutations bondas energy opening
postures the spiritual law of the day as a sign of commitment to the well-being
of your body mind and soul spend some time every day practicing yoga when
practicing on your own an ideal session is as follows pranayama
5 to 10 minutes begin with five to ten minutes of pranayama breathing exercises
start with several rounds of bhastrika or bellows breath to clear your body of
toxins then perform three or four durga breaths bringing air sequentially into
your lower middle and upper lung spaces next shift into u je breathing for
several minutes slowly inhaling and exhaling with a slight contraction of
your throat muscles finally move into nadi shodhana or alternate nostril
breathing partially close your eyes as you perform nadi shodhana to draw your
attention inward depending upon how much time you have available spend five to
ten minutes performing your breathing exercises bhastrika one to two minutes
bellows breath Durga one to two minutes complete breath je one to two minutes
success breath nadi shodhana two to four minutes
clearing breath so hum meditation 10 to 30 minutes after clearing the subtle
channels of circulation with your pranayama breathing exercises you are
ready to take your attention to a more expanded state of awareness through
meditation close your eyes completely and simply
become aware of your thoughts for a few moments then sequentially bring your
attention to each of the seven chakras audibly and toning the mantra for each
energy center after awakening these Junction points between the mind and the
body it is time to calm your mind begin your silent meditation by
practicing breathing awareness using the Soham mantra or any other mind quieting
procedure you have learned we encourage you to learn primordial sound meditation
from a qualified instructor meditation ideally is practiced for 20
to 30 minutes if you cannot accommodate this full-time allow for at least 10
minutes of meditation during your yoga practice always take a few minutes at
the end of your meditation to gently stretch and move before opening your
eyes flexibility postures 10 to 20 minutes having cleared your channels in
quiet at your mind you are now ready to begin moving energy consciously through
the yoga poses begin with the flexibility poses taking a minute or two
to move into each of the nine postures one of animal asana wind-relieving pose
to Sarvangasana shoulder stand three Alesana plough pose for bhujangasana
cobra pose five salabhasana locust pose six daniel asana bow pose seven
Janissary asana bent knee forward bend eight Padmasana lotus flexion nine which
bruty uplifting pose balancing postures five to ten minutes
with enhanced flexibility you naturally become better at maintaining your
balance spend about a minute in each of the six balancing poses noticing how
your inner mental turbulence quiets as you find your physical center one
Sanna sir tree pose – ik pegasi ‘no one foot pose tree trikonasana triangle pose
for done de amana konasana standing angle pose v dandy amana dhanurasana
standing bow pose six garudasana eagle pose Sun Salutations five to 20 minutes
the flowing sequential movements of the Sun Salutations can be performed slowly
or energetically in the context of this sequence we recommend you perform your
12 postures briskly begin with six sets which may take you about five minutes
gradually progressing until you are performing Sun Salutations for 15 to 20
minutes in addition to stretching your muscles and joints you will exercise
your heart and improve your circulation one Salutation pose to sky reaching pose
3 hand to feet pose for equestrian pose 5 Mountain Pose six eight limbs pose
seven cobra pose eight Mountain Pose nine equestrian pose ten hands to feet
pose eleven sky reaching pose twelve Salutation pose bondas two to five
minutes it is useful at this stage to perform your energy governing techniques
begin with the chinlock bandha in which you fully exhale flexing your head
forward and then inhale against a closed throat release after several seconds
then begin the stomach lift bandha in which you raise your stomach using your
abdominal and diaphragm muscles finally awaken the energy at the base of your
spine by performing the root bandha contracting your sphincter muscles
Jolanda bandha one-minute chinlock Ludhiana bandha one-minute stomach lift
mula bandha one-minute root lock energy opening postures 5 to 10 minutes ending
ear asanas set with these for energy opening poses
name of you to channel vitality into all aspects of your life perform each of
these postures with conscious awareness allowing the life force to flow
effortlessly into every organ tissue and cell of your body
one matsyendrasana spinal twist to chakrasana kneeling wheel pose three
subtly Rossano diamond kneeling for balasana
child’s pose activate the spiritual law of the day five minutes at the end of
your program lie on your back with your arms at your sides and allow your total
awareness to be in your body enjoy the sensations generated by
consciously moving the life force through you bring the spiritual law of
the day into your awareness committing to enlivening it by attending to the
three activating intentions as a result of the expanded awareness flexibility
and balance you have generated in your practice the law of the day will
spontaneously support you in the fulfillment of your deepest desires
spiritual law of the day day spiritual law activating intentions Sunday pure
potentiality one cultivates stillness to commune with nature three practice non
judgement Monday giving and receiving one practice breath awareness to
cultivate gratitude three acknowledge your needs tuesday karma or cause and
effect one witness your choices to consider the consequences three listen
to your heart Wednesday least effort one practice
acceptance to accept responsibility three be defenseless Thursday intention
and desire one be clear of your intentions to trust the outcome three
practice present moment awareness Friday detachment one practice detachment to
embrace uncertainty three surrender to the field of pure potentiality
Saturday Dharma or purpose in life 1 attend to your Silent Witness to
acknowledge your talents 3 serve others prioritizing if you spend some time in
each stage of this program you can spend as little as 3 quarters of an hour or
almost 2 hours in your practice decide for yourself the pace and intensity that
you can execute the time you spend will yield rewards physically emotionally and
spiritually commit to this program for one month and you will be a yogi for
life conclusion from here what you see you become platen jelly according to
Indian philosophy Yoga is the system of gaining knowledge through direct
experience a chemist’s may understand the molecular basis of a strawberry a
geneticist may understand the DNA sequences that underlie different
varieties of strawberries a botanist may know the precise soil and water
requirements for a strawberry plant to thrive
a yogi knows the strawberry by taking a bite Yoga declares that you can
understand reality by consciously experiencing the different layers of
your life physical mental and spiritual by tuning in to the sensations of your
body you can understand the workings of physiology by listening to your inner
dialogue you can understand the nature of the mind by going beyond your body in
mind you can directly experience your essential spiritual core Yoga encourages
you to expand your sense of self so you can solve the challenges that arise in
your life each of us is a heroic character on the battlefield of life the
perennial story of life is depicted in the Indian classic the bhagavad-gita in
which the forces of good and the forces of evil
find residence in two clans of the same family the Pandava clan led by Arjuna
represents right action in accordance with natural law the Kauravas headed by
Duryodhana represent action performed with limited awareness resulting in
outcomes that cause suffering to those affected by the choices made
bhagavad-gita with these two opposing forces on the
battlefield of life preparing for massive conflict both Arjuna and
Duryodhana asked Lord Krishna representing the state of expanded
consciousness for support krishna offers one leader the use of his army while the
other gets him as his personal charioteer Giulio donna gets to choose
first and takes the army believing that the power of might will provide him the
greatest benefit the power of expanded awareness in the form of Krishna goes to
Arjuna Krishna takes Arjuna above the battlefield where Arjuna confesses his
confusion about what to do on the one hand he believes that is his duty to
fight his relatives who have created havoc in the world on the other hand he
feels tremendous compassion for the uncles and cousins who have played
important roles in his life our Juna is paralyzed by his inner
battle the tremendous value of yoga is the depiction of this classic conflict
between heart and mind that each of us faces during our lives while time is
suspended krishna teaches arjuna the essence of yoga telling him that good
and evil pleasure in pain and loss and gain are two sides of the same coin of
life the solution that yoga offers is to go beyond the realm of duality and
become established in the state of being that is beyond time space and causality
once rooted in this connection to spirit our Juna is exerted to enter into battle
to rebalance the forces of nature Krishna tells Arjuna go beyond the realm
of good and evil where life is dominated by beginnings and endings enter into the
domain of yoga where all duality finds its unity established in unity perform
activity that supports Dharma this is the ultimate purpose of a yoga practice
yoga takes you into the realm of pure potentiality where anything is possible
it awakens the law of giving and receiving as you become aware of the
continuous exchange of your life energy with a life energy of the universe
flexing and extending through your poses you express the law of karma as you
recognize that every action generates a proportionate reaction the law of least
effort becomes lively as you surrender into each posture releasing rather than
forcing your way into a position combining the law of intention with the
law of detachment yoga demonstrates that introducing your desire and allowing
nature to orchestrate its fulfillment maximizes achievement while minimizing
strain finally moving gracefully sensitively and consciously
is the technology of living the law of Dharma in which your actions have a
positive effect on you and your environment any reason for practicing
yoga is a good reason enhancing flexibility and releasing stress are as
noble a purpose for performing yoga as the awakening of spirituality this is
the great gift of yoga it serves and nourishes us at every level of our being
and spontaneously contributes to greater well-being in all domains of life the
practice of yoga is worthy of your valuable time and attention Yoga will
help you discover gifts within yourself that have remained unopened since your
childhood gifts of peace harmony laughter and love this concludes the
seven spiritual laws of yoga by Deepak Chopra MD and David Simon MD narrated by
Tom thank you for watching this video my
friends I hope you really enjoyed it make sure you leave a comment below and
please subscribe to this channel I want to give you so much more thank you and
I’ll see you next time A Practical Guide to Healing Your Body, Mind, and Spirit: 7 Spiritual Laws of Yoga by Deepak Chopra

All Ideas go through 3 phrases before theyre accepted:
1. It's rejected
2. It's ridiculed
3. It accepted as self evident


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