51 Days Yoga Consciousness Series 2nd May-21st June 2021
Namaste All My Yoga Yaatris! May Yog Bless You!
Knowledge of Yoga is infinite, boundless and timeless. “Learning Yoga is an everlasting journey that leads you within and Within is where you find the world of immortal bliss”. –Mitraasha
The idea behind running this 51 Days Yoga Consciousness series is to proffer my modest learnings and share the divine pearls of Yoga science with people at large. Let’s have a conjoint intent to learn, implement and extend the wisdom of Yoga with a positive co-action and harmonious reverberation amongst each other.
Today, we begin with the Meditative Asanas!
Hundreds of different asanas are performed in yogic practice, however it is stated all these asanas came into being elementally to support the Yogi develop the strength and resilience to sit and stay in one of the classic meditative postures for long and accelerate on the journey of finding the final objective of Yoga!
Meditation is the asana for the mind. A meditative posture incites a prayerful state and a meditative practice takes your mind in quietude. Sitting for long is not the motive, it is about the reconstituting of the swaying mind to a state of calmness and the reverberations of tranquility, peace that precipitates as a result of practising in the meditative posture. There develops mindfulness and a realization of being in the present is instilled.
Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras on Dharana states: ‘Deśa bandhasya cittasya dhāranā’, which means- “Dharana is when the mind stuff is held concentrated in one place”, and on Dhyana it says: ‘Tatra pratyaya eka tānatā dhyānam’, which translates as – “Then (when the mind force) is held onto that one essence/place for an extended/continuous duration is dhyana.”
- For someone who is a beginner, it may take a while before he/she gets comfortable and accustomed in the posture. For them, it is advised to start practicing for a smaller duration and when proficient, gradually increase the time. Initially the mind may often get distracted, however try gently bringing it’s focus back on your breath or the chosen external/internal point/object of focus/concentration.
- Once you are well composed and settled in the posture, gently close your eyes, ease down your facial muscles and subtly notice your breath. Starting from about 10 to 20 minutes each day and gradually expanding the duration as per your time, need, capacity and willingness will be fruitful in the long run.
Today’s meditative posture is:
Sthita Prarthana Asana—The Standing Prayer Posture
A proper bearing of your body is essential for its physiological and psychological health. Living habitually with inaccurate posture for an extended period in life results in slumping of not only the external body organs but also adds to the sluggishness of internal abdominal organs, which leads to hampered blood circulation, giving rise to state of constipation, despair, confusion, headaches, severe tiredness and sometimes neurasthenia.
When you practice, you will experience that the moment you close your eyes, your body will start swaying and you will be required to pay attention to your breath and bring it to a subtlety. This posture makes you realise the significance of the relationship between your mind and breath through your sense faculty such as sight. Practicing this posture aids in enhancing neuro-muscular coordination, amplifying physical balancing, mental calmness and spiritual inclination.
Limitations / Contraindications
- People going through acute arthritis (lower limbs), having varicose veins and hypotension should avoid standing for long.
- People with vertigo, should keep their eyes open, gaze fixed at a point, and feet kept a little apart to avoid toppling over.
- People feeling low or depressed are recommended to practise active or dynamic meditation, where the posture continues to be the same, however focus is placed on an external object.(eg: a steady flame of a candle, a flower, etc. They may even do backward counting for short intervals to remain more present.
How To Practice?
- Stand straight, spine upright, with your hands on respective sides and feet together. Hold your abdomen in normal contour/ or moderately inwards, keep your pelvis tucked in, chest thrown well forward, shoulders relaxed and chin parallel to the floor.
- As a beginner, if you find it challenging to retain your balance and find yourself swaying, you can choose to stand with your feet a little apart, placing the body weight on the ball of the feet closer to the big toes to retrieve footing.
- Now, fix your gaze at any one point straight in front of you while maintaining a calm mind and relaxed body.
- Join both your hands in Namaskar mudra and place them in front of your chest, close to the sternum. Maintain your shoulders and elbows in a relaxed position. Either gently close your eyes and observe your breath, or simply continue your gaze at one point fixed.
- Stay in this posture for four to five minutes minimum, going up to ten minutes or more as it suits you. The objective here is to maintain your body motionless without swaying with or without closed eyes and find an equilibrium in this state.
- Now, slowly open your eyes, palm or cup them for a couple of seconds and gently lower your hands to resume the starting position. Stay with the mental quietude for as long as possible.
It corrects postural defects and strengthens the posture through enhancing the neuromuscular coordination.
Physical stability increases by developed control over the voluntary muscular movements.
It relaxes the nerves, inculcates awareness of the mind, improves concentration and brings lasting calmness.
A meditative state is induced by steady, regular and a rhythmic breathing practice in this posture.
Thought of the day : “Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor” – Thich Nhat Hahn
Link to day 15: Surya Namaskar-The Sun Salutation https://kreately.in/day-15-surya-namaskar-the-sun-salutation-mitraasha/
Link to day 17: Meditative Asana: Sukhasana https://kreately.in/day-17-meditative-asana-sukhasana-mitraasha/
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