I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard the expression “Control your breath, control your life” or some variation of that. I can’t count that any more than I can count the number of times I’ve overheard a teacher reminding students to breathe during a Yoga practice – I’m guilty of that as well.
Teacher Training provided a basic understanding of the concept of proper breathing. Many books, and a class or two later I know I’ve only scratched the surface. I now consider breathing more-or-less an art-form. When you consider there are four main pranayama practices covered in a 200 Hr TT course: Deergha Swaasam (3 part breath), Ujjayi (victorious breath), Kapaalabhaati (breath of fire or skull-shining), and Naadhi Suddhi (alternate nostril breathing) that’s quite a bit of information.
All four have their place in a pranayama practice: without question.
Sometimes we yogis miss very clear opportunities during our daily lives to take our practice off of the mat and place it firmly and prominently into our every day existence. It can be all too easy to become comfortable with how we view our practice and the world around us. Yoga provides a wonderful toolbox for us to use to continually hone the physical asana aspects of our practice, but even more importantly, the mental (mind) and spiritual aspects as well.
Happiness is not some “magical” place at which we arrive, and lasting Happiness can be difficult to obtain…without hard work that is.
That’s not what you wanted to hear is it? The truth is, happiness is a discipline, a practice and a persistence in challenging yourself and your belief systems. Happiness depends upon remaining open to different viewpoints and taking what suits you while leaving the rest behind.
Happiness is a state of mind, not brought about by external material objects or internal desires, but by cultivating an ability to tap into the abundant joy that fills the space between the spaces on a daily ongoing basis.
Meditation is one of the best things we can do for our body, mind, and spirit. Especially when it comes to achieving balance in one or all of the chakra centers, the art of meditating and visualizing is our greatest ally and tool. There are many methods for balancing and opening the energy centers. This meditation is aimed at moving through the chakras one at a time, allowing you the freedom to spend as much time as you want in any specific area. This gives you the power to customize your experience based on what you need in any given moment. We recommend moving through all the chakras the first few times. This will help you assess which ones need the most time and focus.
Recently, a close friend of mine was asking me about meditation. He knows I practice yoga and meditation and he was picking my brain to find out a little bit more about how it could benefit him. At one point he uttered the famous phrase that every beginner says about meditation, “I CAN’T meditate. I can’t turn my thoughts off.” As every yogi knows, this famous phrase is second only to “I can’t do Yoga, I’m not flexible”, which is akin to not taking medicine because you’re already sick. It just doesn’t make sense.
Learn the value of simple meditation and understand the absolute basics of how to become mindful. You can take this technique with you wherever you go. This is a valuable and portable practice to keep with you during the day, and use in your most stressful moments.
The world CAN and WILL BE a better place if more people learn these simple techniques. One minute, that’s all it takes.
I found this on a Facebook post by a friend of mine, and I thought it was so powerful and accurate to where I am in my life right now that it would be worth reposting here on the blog…I’m sure that many people will be able to relate…enjoy.
“Anything is one of a million paths. Therefore you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path; if you feel you should not follow it, you must not stay with it under any conditions. To have such clarity you must lead a disciplined life. Only then will you know that any path is only a path and there is no affront, to oneself or to others, in dropping it if that is what your heart tells you to do. But your decision to keep on the path or to leave it must be free of fear or ambition. I warn you. Look at every path closely and deliberately. Try it as many times as you think necessary.”