Yoga laughs

When is the last time you laughed until you cried?  Who was it with?  What was it about?  Is laughter a part of your daily beauty routine?  How about smiling?  Frowning?  Scowling?elevation-station-lady-laughing

CHALLENGE: Live today like the happiest person in the world.  Smile too much.  Laugh too easily.  Hand out compliments when you don’t feel like it.  Over exaggerate your happiness just to feel what it’s like to spread joy around.  Experiment with laughter.  Smile even when you are by yourself if you find yourself getting too serious.  Sing out loud.  Whistle.  Smile.  Laugh.  Have a fabricated happy day and see how you feel.  Happiness is not too far away.

Some yogic jokes to get you started......

Q. What did the yogi tell the door-to-door salesperson who came to his home selling vacuum cleaners?
A. Too many attachments!

Q. What did the sign in the window of the yoga master searching for a new disciple say?
A. Inquire within!

Q. Why did the yogi refuse anesthesia when having his wisdom teeth removed?
A. He wanted to transcend-dental-medication!

Q: What do yoga meditation and an apple peeler have in common?
A: They both take you to the core.

Q: How many yogis does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Into what?

Change is inevitable, except from vending machines.

Yoga police: "You have the right to remain silent!"

Don't just do something -- Sit there!

If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?

Having trouble sleeping? Try counting your blessings.

If you want to ruin the truth, stretch it.

 

Creamy Date Porridge

In the Southern Hemisphere it's getting cold in the mornings, and it's dark when we wake up for work. We are less and less inclined to make a real breakfast in the morning, but we need it more than ever.

Rolled Oats are my favorite hot breakfast. They are also the easiest, and the fastest. The night before you want them, bring the oats to boil with hot water, then turn off the heat and cover the pot. In the morning, all you have to do is heat up the now-tender oats. Make it creamy and naturally sweet by adding some dates and walnuts to the mixture. Having the dates soak overnight gives a caramel and creamy taste.

Creamy Date PorridgeCreamy porridge - Satya Live Yoga

INGREDIENTS
1 cup of water
½ cup oats
3 chopped pitted dates
1 tablespoons chopped walnuts
Pinch of salt
1 cinnamon stick
Milk or yogurt
Shredded coconut if desired
Sprinkle of brown sugar if it's not sweet enough!

PREPARATION
Combine water, oats, dates, walnuts, salt and stick in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil then turn off stove and cover pot overnight.
In the morning remove the cinnamon stick and reheat.
Spoon into a bowl and top with milk or yogurt, some shredded coconut and a sprinkle of brown sugar if it's not sweet enough!

Where to practice?

Empower header

Where to practice?

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You don't need to have a sacred space to have a sacred practice. You can experience that connection to your body breath and mind anywhere. be creative, innovative and get on your mat no matter what!

Namaste,

Unplugging The Noise

Unplugging and taking a Media Breaksocial-marketing

In this modern age, we seldom question the pervasive presence of the media. Television, radio, newspapers, magazines, telephones, and websites are part of most people's everyday experiences. They enable us to stay informed while sometimes taking us on amazing journeys. But the content and experiences that these outlets offer also consume space in our minds that can have a profound effect on our emotional state. If you are someone who feels like your life is oversaturated with the "buzz" that comes from the media, you may want to consider taking a break. A media fast involves not watching television, reading any newspapers or magazines, checking or sending any e-mails, or even talking on the phone.

On the simplest level, undertaking this fast will free up thinking space. When you are constantly being bombarded with signals coming from outside sources, it can be hard to disassociate yourself, particularly if what you are hearing or reading is negative or stressful. Avoiding the media, for a few weeks, or even just a few days, can help you center yourself. The fast may even introduce you to creative aspects of yourself that you didn't know existed, as you enjoy some quiet time and reconnect with other interests. We may feel like something is lacking from our lives during the first few days of a fast. But it is this emptiness that opens up the space for a more expansive and clutter-free life.

Research has shown that both news and television programming can have an intense effect on mood, even causing sadness and anxiety. Without the "noise" of the media running through your head, you are freer to focus your attention inward. Ideas will present themselves to you more readily, and you will find yourself available to revel in the small joys of your own life. You also will be freer to live in the present moment, rather than focusing on what's going on in the news or your favorite soap opera. A media break can also help you develop a more conscious relationship with news and fictional entertainment. When you aren't continuously subjected to the media, you are able to look at what you are seeing or reading more objectively. Taking a break from the media may also give you a greater sense of calm, balance, well-being, and a new perspective on life.

Reprinted from DailyOM- Inspirational thoughts for a happy, healthy and fulfilling day. Register for free at www.dailyom.com

Yoga Nidra – the stages

Yoga nidra is by far my favourite yoga practice. I am so passionate about it because it has honestly transformed my life. I whole heartedly believe everyone can benefit from the practice of Yoga Nidra.  Those who practice are often amaYoga Nidra - Satya Live Yogazed at the results. This post explains how the practice works and each of the stages -
Preparation
Ideally, yoga nidra is practiced in the posture of shavasana, with the eyes closed. (If this pose isn't appropriate an alternative pose can be adopted). In this stage, initial relaxation of the body and mind is induced by the awareness of stillness, comfort, posture, position, breath, and listening to the external sounds with the attitude of a witness.
Sankalpa
The sankalpa is a resolve, a statement of positive intent. It ‘works’, because it is like a seed planted deep in the rich earth of the subconscious when the mind is quiet and relaxed and ready to absorb it. This seed will germinate, take root, and grow into a healthy plant that will flower and bear fruit, helping us to make the changes we want to make in our life, and to become all that we are capable of being.
The rotation of awareness
In the rotation of awareness the body and the mind are brought to a deeply relaxed state. While the focused mind follows the guiding voice around the body, the body is energied.
The rotation teaches us to let go. As our attention moves quickly and lightly from each part of the body to the next, not lingering or ‘concentrating’, we are being taught in the simplest, clearest way not to ‘hang on’. The ‘letting go’ lesson learned during the rotation applies to everything in life: emotions, sensations, experiences, achievements, possessions, disappointments, people. Ultimately, it applies to life itself. Letting go is a lesson for us all to learn. It may be the single most important lesson of yoga nidra, as it arguably is of life.
Breath awareness
In this stage, one simply becomes aware of the natural breath without making an attempt to change the flow of the breath. One may become aware of the breath by watching it in the nostrils, chest, and abdomen, or in the passage between the navel and the throat. The practitioner becomes aware of each incoming and outgoing breath by counting them mentally.
Opposites
In the pairs of opposites, we practice detachment. This quality empowers us to stand back a little, not to hold onto sensations and emotions, not to get entangled in them, but to let them come and let them go. We learn to look at what is going on inside us without being afraid of it. We learn that warmth and cold are just warmth and cold, not ‘good’ and ‘bad’. They are just what they are. Pain and pleasure are simply pain and pleasure: we learn to experience them without judging them, without flinching from pain or clinging to pleasure. In creating, developing, feeling, and letting go of sensations and emotions, we learn that sensations and emotions are transitory: they come and they go, and do not last. We learn that ‘the thing is as it is’.
Visualization
The different types of visualizations in yoga nidra – rapid images, story lines, the chakras, healing – allow fears and insecurities to surface so that they can be acknowledged, accepted and released. They connect us to our creativity, using our imagination to create and develop images and stories. Working with visualization in yoga nidra, when we are open and sensitive and our imagination can roam freely, helps us to remember and let go of painful stuff from the past. It accesses and releases our samskaras, the impressions grooved into our consciousness by our past experiences. This brings a release from some of the psychological, emotional, and karmic causes of illness and opens us to new experiences.
Sankalpa
Once again the sankalpa, taken in stage two, is repeated mentally three times in this stage with full dedication, faith and optimism.
Ending the practice
Before ending the session of yoga nidra, slowly the awareness is externalized by asking the practitioner to become aware of the external sounds, objects and persons. They are asked then to slowly move the body parts and to stretch the body.

Sankalpa – The Power of Intention

The Yoga tradition offers us a very powerful practice for connecting with our most heartfelt desires. It’s called sankalpa, a Sanskrit word that means “resolution or resolve”. The practice of sankalpa is the practice of intention setting.The sankalpa has the potential to release tremendous power by clearly defining and focusing on a chosen goal. Its effect is to awaken the willpower within by uniting the cSankalpa - Satya Live Yogaonscious awareness with the unconscious forces lying dormant. It takes the form of a short phrase or sentence, clearly and concisely expressed, using the same wording each time, to bring about a positive change in one’s life. Now the important question arises: How to choose the appropriate sankalpa?

Sankalpa can be seen from different perspectives. Let us say that life is like a river that has to be crossed. We cannot step straight across from where we are standing now because the river is wide, nor can we swim against the strong current. So we search the bank for stepping stones that we can take, one by one, to cross over safely.

Crossing the river is our aim, our life’s goal. Very few people know what this is. It may take years and years to discover. Nearly everyone who has come to yoga will recognize that they are trying to achieve something, but will not be clear as to exactly what that is. So the first step is to recognize where we are now, where we stand on our bank of the river, and then to recognize what change can be attempted to begin our way over, to take the first step.

This usually means recognizing, reducing and eliminating some negative quality that we know is holding us back, where one overriding bad habit is acting like a barrier to more substantial change. This is the starting point for many people. If that negative quality can be successfully managed and dealt with, then we are in a position to recognize a positive change we can make that would improve the quality of our life. And that is the next stage of sankalpa, where we can alter the way we conduct ourselves with family, friends and society, and in our lifestyle.

Then, looking deeper and more precisely within, there may be some quality lying dormant that holds or has locked within it our hidden potential. Recognizing this is when sankalpa takes on more power because it is the nature of the inner forces, of consciousness, to be always trying to find a positive expression. But some pattern from before, some samskara or karma, has turned that force into a negative expression – or it has been suppressed and is not expressed at all. When the sankalpa is working at this level, then the attitudes we take for granted as being part of who we are will be seen not to have any real basis. Then a noticeable change in attitude takes place where everything is seen quite differently.

From here the focus of the life force becomes quite sharp, and one’s purpose in this life may be recognized, which is what we understand by sankalpa. This must come spontaneously from within as an intuitive understanding, where our nature and character, our path and dharma are in harmony. Here the spiritual dimension of sankalpa is realized.

So although four stages have been described: (i) the reforming of bad habits, (ii) improving the quality of life and living, (iii) creating a real change within our personality, and (iv) realizing what we are trying to achieve in this life – the sankalpa is really always one. But to recognize the deepest quality of sankalpa we may have to go through some of the stages along the way like stepping-stones across a river, each step within reach of the previous one.

It is said that the sankalpa should not change until it becomes realized, but many do not know what they really want and therefore in a true sense do not know their sankalpa. So, if my initial intention is to give up smoking and I succeed, then obviously the sankalpa to stop smoking will change. But really it is a transition from one stepping-stone to the next, so now a higher resolve may be made. And so on until the real nature of sankalpa is realized, as the bigger picture becomes clearer.

We may start at any point along the way, but the choice of the kind of sankalpa we make is very important and should always aim to bring out the best that is in us. Time should be taken at first to find out what level we are at and what is important to us now. Whether changing a habit or an entire personality, it must be in tune with the nature of the individual and therefore come from within, and not be a product of wishful thinking or a casual desire.

For the sucSankalpa - Satya Live Yogacess of the sankalpa, certain conditions must be met. The sankalpa is like a seed that will have tremendous power, but only if it is sown in fertile ground, looked after and tended daily, with the inner certainty that the seed will produce its fruit in its own time. After the sankalpa is made, the mind nurtures it at deeper levels as the roots of the seed go further down, the emotions express it as a positive feeling that has power and strength, the body resonates with it, and the intellect does not question it – ever. Faith is where all the dimensions of the personality are in harmony, undivided and moving in the same direction together. How can it not succeed?

Lastly, the sankalpa need not be influenced by words alone. It may also be visualized symbolically as an image, felt as a sensation; it may bring up certain feelings which have a recognizable force or are just quietly known. In the end the sankalpa is not just something nice you say three times twice in yoga nidra, but it is a motivating force that you are living and moving toward all the time, every day.

This post has been written and inspired by a dear friend of mine, Swami Anandakumar Saraswati. Swami Anandakumar is an international Satyananda Yoga teacher and an exceptional exponent of meditation. He has studied yoga and a wide variety of yogic disciplines for over thirty years and captured the essence of sankalpa in this relatable and practical sense.

Why chant AUM

When we chant Aum we are connecting to that universal energy that resonates through all of us. How? you may wonder. The sound Aum, when chanted, vibrates at the frequency of 432 Hz, which is the saWhy we chant AUM - Satya Live Yogame vibrational frequency found throughout everything in nature, and within ourselves. This mantra is known to be the basic sound of the world which in it contains all other sounds. When we chant this sound we are symbolizing (and creating) that connection between us, the universe and all living things.

The mantra can be broken into 3 syllables – A U M

"A" (pronounced "AH" as in "father") resonates in the center of the mouth. It represents normal waking consciousness, in which subject and object exist as separate entities. This is the level of mechanics, science, logical reason, the lower three chakras. Matter exists on a gross level, is stable and slow to change.

Then the sound "U" (pronounced as in "who") transfers the sense of vibration to the back of the mouth, and shifts the allegory to the level of dream consciousness. Here, object and subject become intertwined in awareness. Both are contained within us. Matter becomes subtle, more fluid, rapidly changing. This is the realm of dreams, divinities, imagination, the inner world.

"M" is the third element, humming with lips gently closed. This sound resonates forward in the mouth and buzzes throughout the head. (Try it.) This sound represents the realm of deep, dreamless sleep. There is neither observing subject nor observed object. All are one, and nothing. Only pure consciousness exists, unseen, pristine, latent, covered with darkness. This is the cosmic night, the interval between cycles of creation, the womb of the divine Mother.

Chanting the mantra Aum has endless benefits but to name a few -

  • It helps to improves the production of endorphins encouraging you to relax.

  • It has positive effect for cardiac vascular health, lowering blood pressure and increasing efficiency of the cells and organs in the body.

  • In essence AUM relaxes and rejuvenates the mind increasing concentration and memory therefore the ability to learn.

  • It helps in Cleansing the mind.Controlling the emotions.

  • It relives the stress levels by supplying more oxygen to the body.

  • The repetition of Aum leads to excellent mental and physical health.

As you can see this sound and symbol is rich in meaning and depth. It reminds us that we have the ability to move past our physical and mental states of consciousness and connect with the divine – both in ourselves and others.

Why chant AUM...in its essence, AUM represents the sound of divinity in all things in the past, present and future.

The purpose of asana – What is it for?

The purpose of asana is as varied as the individuals who practice them. Some people wish to improve their health, increase their flexibility and strength etc. Others are looking for a way to obtain grePurpose of asana - Satya Live Yogaater peace, relaxation and harmony in their lives. Some practice to increase their awareness, focus and concentration. Still others use it as their initial preparation to a greater understanding of truth and reality, and ultimately transcendence of the limited self.

All these different reasons have their value and place in asana practice, but it is also important to recognize the purpose(s) for which the practices were originally designed. Depending on one's chosen path in Yoga, the emphasis on asana may vary -

Raja Yoga – Asana is practiced to develop the ability to be able to sit comfortably in one position for an extended period of time.

Hatha Yoga – Uses specific positions to open the energy channels and psychic centres. In this tradition, asana are tools to higher awareness and provide the stable foundation necessary for exploration of body, breath, mind and beyond.

Jnana Yoga – Asana is used to increase concentration and purify the body, so that the mind is free to trace the 'I' thought back to it's source.

Karma Yoga – Poses are practiced to increase one's coordination and balance making action more efficient and harmonious.

Other paths – Whilst asana may not be directly specified as a part of other paths, this is not to say that they don't have value when combined with these approaches. Many of the side benefits from asana greatly contribute to preparing the mind-body for other practices.

Namaste,

Change is Inevitable, Growth is Optional

Our journey through life involves a series of changes - some major and many minor. Being able to adapt and respond effectively in a constantly changing world has become a necessary skill. And one that we can enhance and develop when we understand what goes on at a personal level when we are faced with change.

How we respond to change is a funny thing. There are times when we go out of our way to initiate change in our lives. For example, we may move house, city or country; change jobs or go back to school. In the last welemonsek, I have stopped teaching the daily yoga in the park classes and left my job at lululemon athletica. Although I have been apprehensive about such changes, I'm stimulated by the possibilities and opportunities that will emerge.

Like this, when we initiate the change, we are likely to define the experience as exciting. On the other hand, these same changes might be imposed on us by circumstance, or the design of another person, or our workplace. When change is imposed on us, our experience of the change is likely to be quite different. In these situations, we may feel threatened and fearful about the change, and focus heavily on negative outcomes. We may want little to do with the change and find ourselves resisting it fiercely.

When we resist change, we knowingly or unknowingly behave in ways that attempt to keep things 'the way they were'. Our attitudes and actions are not aligned with the new directions and we are likely to feel discomfort or tension as a result. To help ourselves move from resistance to acceptance, it can be useful to understand that there are varied reasons why people may resist or struggle with change it isn't simply because we think the old way is better.

When we find ourselves resisting or struggling with change, the first step is to ask ourselves WHY?

It May be Because... We Are Creatures of Habit!

Being able to do things the same way provides us with a large element of predictability, stability, and comfort in our lives.

It is important to recognize that it is natural to feel out of sorts and frustrated from time-to-time when we are embarking in new directions. Doing things differently takes effort and the course is never really clear. During periods of change, when things are uncertain and unpredictable, we may fear or worry about the unknown. We may be anxious about where we are headed, and what the future will look like. We generally have a high need for information, and yet it is common for information to be sketchy or incomplete. To help ourselves adapt to uncertainty or ambiguity it's helpful to break things down; look at how the change will affect our immediate situation, clarify things that seem unclear and to take one step at a time.

To minimize worry about what lies ahead ask yourself the question 'is there anything that I can do about this matter?' If yes, then identify the action to be taken. If not, acknowledge that 'I have no control over this matter' and focus on those things that you can influence.

Having a positive orientation towards change will also go a long way. The phrase - "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade" reminds me to encourage optismsim and a can-do attiude in the face of adversity or unfortunate changes. It is important to be aware of our stress levels, and to take special care of ourselves during these times. This means ensuring that we are getting enough rest, eating healthily, and participating in yoga or activities to help one connect to oneself.

We each have an active role to play in how we respond and adapt to change that we experience in life. Understanding this will make it much easier to take advantage of the opportunities for learning, and personal growth that do exist amidst change.

Letting go

Many of us cringe at the sound of these two words… ‘letting go’.Letting go - Satya Live Yoga

Yet letting go is actually an empowering choice to simply walk in a direction that brings YOU closer to greater personal happiness.

Sometimes we are so attached to the drama, the fight, the familiar, that we don’t want to let go. To let go and release that which we battle, can often bring fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of peace, serenity and calm. And to the ego – peace – nothingness – ease - means ‘death’. Death of the adrenaline state that feeds of drama.

Recently I have been watching my addiction to stress. My ego loves it. It makes me feel alive. The high, the buzz, the rush. I'm alert, attentive, on edge. I know it's not healthy and only causes me pain but so badly my ego fights. It fights to cling to the familiar and all it knows; the struggle, drama, pride… anything that will help it root to old, familiar ground.

The ego fights to retain it’s identity, it’s status and it’s power in my life… and it does this by clinging on to what it has always known, even though it no longer serves me.

However, when I let go something quite profound happens. Rather than loosing, I gain. I gain more than words can explain, a sense of freedom, peace, acceptance, contentment. I have come to realise that letting go simply means to let go of the energy of struggle. To allow struggle to drop away…. to come back to oneself, to rest in the energy of what one TRULY wants. That deep inner connection.

I know how hard it can be, sometimes I think I have the most stubborn ego of them all (hehe, of course my ego thinks that!). Walk along this path with me and for today, right now, let go of your need to control the outcome, the situation, the person, or what others think…Give it a go and just see what happens. Once we surrender control, and stop trying to run the show … miracles occur.

Waves of emotion

waves of emotion - Satya Live Yoga

When the going gets tough, the tough may get going, but most of us sidestep unease by distracting ourselves with numbness, work, or substances that temporarily relieve the pain. For years I used food to escape from reality, if it wasn't extra food, it was shopping, work or partying....anything to avoid what is, weave the experience here and now and dodge the present moment.

When things are difficult or unpleasant emotions arise, there is often a resistance. Commonly there is an attraction to pleasure, aversion to pain. A great lesson for me has been that emotions are purely energy in motion = e motion. Sometimes this energy, waves in smoothly, other times it can feel like tidal waves, overwhelming one in a roiling pool of dread, fear, and anxiety.

As we know...what we resists, persists. Even though a distraction may temporarily cover the feeling, just like a band-aid, the sore still lies beneath.

When a feeling arises and the desire to numb or resist emerges, see if you can take a step back. Watch the energy flow, try to stay with it and witness the inner turmoil rather than get sucked into it. If you can successfully ride the waves of sensation and emotion, you'll arrive at a state of compassion and wisdom.

So how can you move from fear and anxiety to insight and freedom? The secret is....staying present and paying attention to sensations and the feelings that come and go. One way to do this is watch the breath. Each time you focus on your breath, each time you relax and listen to your feelings, you open yourself to the present.

By witnessing the feelings instead of reacting to them, one allows life to unfold organically. When we fully embrace the present moment and accept emotions as they are, riding their waves, a new found freedom arises. No longer are we a slave to sensations we are now at peace.

Why 108?

Why 108?

In yoga the number 108 is108 considered as a sacred and auspicious number. This always puzzled me, after some research I found many reasons why 108 is significant.....

  • 1, 0, and 8: Some say that 1 stands for God or higher Truth, 0 stands for emptiness or completeness in spiritual practice, and 8 stands for infinity or eternity.
  • Sun and Earth: The diameter of the Sun is 108 times the diameter of the Earth. The distance from the Sun to the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Sun.
  • Moon and Earth: The average distance of the Moon from the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Moon.
  • Silver and the moon: In astrology, the metal silver is said to represent the moon. The atomic weight of silver is 108.
  • Numerical scale: The 1 of 108, and the 8 of 108, when added together equals 9, which is the number of the numerical scale, i.e. 1, 2, 3 ... 10, etc., where 0 is not a number.
  • 9 times 12: Both of these numbers have been said to have spiritual significance in many traditions. 9 times 12 is 108. Also, 1 plus 8 equals 9. That 9 times 12 equals 108.
  • Powers of 1, 2, and 3 in math: 1 to 1st power=1; 2 to 2nd power=4 (2x2); 3 to 3rd power=27 (3x3x3). 1x4x27=108
  • Desires: There are said to be 108 earthly desires.
  • Delusions: There are said to be 108 human delusions or forms of ignorance.
  • Heart Chakra: The chakras are the intersections of energy lines, and there are said to be a total of 108 energy lines converging to form the heart chakra.
  • Sanskrit alphabet: There are 54 letters in the Sanskrit alphabet. Each has masculine and feminine, shiva and shakti. 54 times 2 is 108.
  • Upanishads: Some say there are 108 Upanishads, texts of the wisdom of the ancient sages.
  • Pentagon: The angle formed by two adjacent lines in a pentagon equals 108 degrees.
  • Astrology: There are 12 constellations, and 9 arc segments called namshas or chandrakalas. 9 times 12 equals 108. Chandra is moon, and kalas are the divisions within a whole.
  • River Ganga: The sacred River Ganga spans a longitude of 12 degrees (79 to 91), and a latitude of 9 degrees (22 to 31). 12 times 9 equals 108.
  • Planets and Houses: In astrology, there are 12 houses and 9 planets. 12 times 9 equals 108.
  • Goddess names: There are said to be 108 Indian goddess names.

Namaste,

 

Vison board

What we focus on gets BIGGER!Vison Board - Satya Live Yoga

Vision boards are the ultimate in manifestation. They serve as a tool to keep you inspired, keep you on track, and keep you motivated. You know all of the Law Of Attraction stuff? Well, creating a vision board and sticking it in your line of sight, is an awesome way to communicate with the Universe about what you would like to collaborate on in your life. Plus, they are fun to make! There are no rules or a set structure on how to create a vision board. With the new year, today is a perfect day to start!

Think about what you'd like, then go and find images, words, quotes and affirmations that remind you of all of your envisioned future. Stick them on some cardboard in whatever way you'd like then post it up where you will see it regularly.

Happy Holidays!

Regardless of what you celebrate...

Whether it's Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza or any other holiday, I hope this season is full of joy and love. Be safe, be happy, and I'll see you in the New Year - if not before! :) Big love to you all!

Namaste,

Breathe Deeply

Remember to breathe. With the festive season just around the corner it's natural for tension to rise. Family, parties, Christmas, work break-ups....so much life going on!Breathe Deeply - Satya Live Yoga

I notice as things speed up and pressure rises I hold my breath. This is often coupled with scrunching my shoulders and rushing my meals. It's no wonder digestion plays up, the body is tensed and in 'fight and flight' mode.

For today, RELAX, eat slowly and be conscious you are breathing.

Summer’s here…..

With the glory of summer in full swing it's no wonder people are increasingly feeling the need to salute to the sun. Summer - Satya Live Yoga

We are running summer yoga classes twice daily out in the beautiful fresh air at Mornington Park, with the classes incorporating gentle flowing movements and steady postures from a combination of traditions, including elements of Qi Gong and Tai Chi.

As well as strengthening your core and posture, classes will help to balance the body, mind and soul and increase your overall sense of wellbeing.

For more information on times, dates, cost etc, check out - Yoga in the Park

Sahasrara Chakra

Seventh Chakra | Crown ChakraSahasrara Chakra
>>Sanskrit Name: Sahasrara
>>Color: white/violet
>>Element: space
>>Development: early adulthood onwards
>>Location: crown of the head (cerebral cortex)
>>Balanced Qualities: connection with divine
>>
Imbalanced Qualities: negativity, separation, duality
>>Main Right: to know, to Learn
>>Body Location Where Physical Issues May Occur: brain
>>Postures that Balance Chakra: Balancing poses that bring awareness to the body and the consciousness like One-legged prayer pose – Eka pada pranamasana and Eagle pose - Garudasana

Sahasrara chakra is not technically a chakra, rather the culmination of all the chakras. ‘Sahasrara’ means infinite, just like the name suggests, this junction is said to be infinite, the seat of the soul, the place where final liberation is achieved.
It represents total unification, harmony and fulfillment.
The Sahasrara Chakra is located on the top of the head. It is also known as the “Thousand-Petalled Lotus,” a symbol of complete, unfolding Consciousness.
The correlating mantra is the same as for Anja Chakra, the original sound OM.
The positive attributes of the Sahasrara Chakra are freedom, omnipresent, omniscient and true bliss. Misdirected Manifestations include poor balance, lack of purpose or spiritual exploration.

Ajna Chakra

Sixth Chakra | Third Eye ChakraAjna Chakra
>>Sanskrit Name: Ajna
>>Color: indigo
>>Element: light
>>Development: adolescence
>>
Location: Third Eye (space between eyebrows)
>>Balanced Qualities: intention and intuition
>>Imbalanced Qualities: lack of direction
>>Main Right: to see
>>Body Location Where Physical Issues May Occur: eyes and ears.
>>Postures that Balance Chakra: Child's Pose - Shashankasana and palming the eyes and eye circles and Meditation/guided visualization/sense withdrawal

‘Anja’ means to know. Ajna Chakra is situated in the middle of the head behind the eyebrow centre. It is associated with the face, eyes, ears, nose, sinuses, cerebellum, and the central nervous system.
Ajna chakra connects all the senses - sight, sound, smell, taste and touch, and also extrasensory perception. It is often symbolised by the colour violet and a lotus flower with two petals. Its corresponding mantra is AUM.
The positive attributes of the Ajna Chakra are true knowledge, inspiration and intuition. Misdirected Manifestations include confusion, indecision and uninspired.

Vishuddhi Chakra

Fifth Chakra | Throat ChakraVishuddhi Chakra
>>Sanskrit Name: Vishuddhi
>>Color: blue
>>Element: sound
>>Development: 7 – 12 years
>>Location: throat
>>Balanced Qualities: open communication
>>Imbalanced Qualities: withdrawn
>>Main Right: to express oneself
>>Body Location Where Physical Issues May Occur: throat, lungs, sinuses
>>Postures that Balance Chakra: Roaring Lion - Simhagarjanasana, neck stretches and shoulder openers like Shoulderstand Sarvangasana and Plow Pose - Halasana
‘Visha’ translates to impurity, and ‘shuddhi’ means purify, just as the name suggests, this chakra is the purifying energy centre within the being. Vishuddhi Chakra is situated in the throat. It is associated with the neck, throat, jaw, ears, voice, trachea, brochial tubes, upper lungs, esophagus, arms and Thyroid gland.
Vishuddhi chakra is connected with the element of space, also known as ether, and the sense of hearing. It is often symbolised by a pale blue colour and a lotus flower with sixteen petals. Its corresponding mantra is HAM.
The positive attributes of the Vishuddhi Chakra are clear communication, freedom of expression and expansion. Misdirected Manifestations include anxiety, lack of freedom, restriction, thyroid and throat problems.

Anahata Chakra

The Fourth Chakra | Heart ChakraAnahata Chakra

>>Sanskrit Name: Anahata
>>Color: green
>>Element: air
>>Development: 4 – 7 years
>>Location: heart center
>>Balanced Qualities: love for oneself
>>
Imbalanced Qualities: depression, seclusion
>>Main Right: to love and be loved
>>Body Location Where Physical Issues May Occur: circulatory system, heartChakras are major junctions of energy within the body.
>>Postures that Balance Chakra: Chest openers like Camel - Ustrasana, Fish - Matsyasana. Also Pranayama (breathing exercises) like Deep Breathing, Alternate Nostril Breathing and Heart Gesture - Hridaya Mudra
‘Anahad’ translates to unstruck, unbeaten, this is the harmonious center of love. Anahata chakra is situated in the centre of the chest, close to the heart. It is associated with the upper back, thorax and thoracic cavity, lower lungs, heart, the skin and the circulatory and lymphatic system.
The corresponding element is Air. Air represents freedom and expansion. This means that in this Chakra our consciousness can expand into infinity.
Anahata Chakra governs the sense of touch and is often symbolised by the colour green and a lotus flower with twelve petals. Its corresponding mantra is YAM.
The positive attributes of Anahata Chakra are love, understanding, forgiveness and empathy. Misdirected Manifestations include jealousy, sorrow and despair.
When completely opened, this chakra forms the center of true "unconditional" love.

Manipura Chakra

Manipura Chakra

The Third Chakra | Solar Plexus Chakra
>>Sanskrit Name: ManipuraManipura Chakra
>>
Color: yellow
>>Element: fire
>>Development: 18 months – 4 years
>>Location: Solar Plexus
>>Balanced Qualities: confidence
>>
Imbalanced Qualities: low self esteem, lack of vision
>>Main Right: to be
Body Location Where Physical Issues May Occur: intestines, stomach
>>Postures that Balance Chakra: Heat building poses like Sun Salutation - Surya Namaskar, twists like Half Spinal Twist - Ardha Matsyendhrasana, and abdominal strengtheners like Boat Pose - Naukasana

‘Mani’ translates to jewel and ‘pura’  means city, thus, Manipura chakra s also known as the city of jewels.
The Manipura Chakra is situated behind the navel. It is associated with the lower back, abdomen, digestive system, stomach, liver, spleen, gallbladder and autonomic nervous system.
Manipura Chakra is connected with the fire element and manifests in the body as heat. This energy center governs the sense of sight and is often symbolised by the colour yellow and a lotus flower with ten petals. Its corresponding mantra is RAM.
The positive attributes of the Manipura Chakra are vitality, power, will and achievement.
Misdirected Manifestations include self-doubt, egotism and arrogance.

Swadhishthana Chakra

The Second Chakra | Sacral ChakraSwadhishthana Chakra
>>Sanskrit Name: Swadhishthana
>>
Color: orange
>>Element: water
>>Development: 6 months – 2 years
>>Location: lower abdomen, below the navel
>>Balanced Qualities: sensuality, sexuality
>>Imbalanced Qualities: sexual dysfunction, lack of sensation
>>Main Right: To Feel
>>Body Location Where Physical Issues May Occur: reproductive organs
>>Postures that Balance Chakra: Hip opening poses like Legs spread back stretch pose - Pada Prasar Paschimottanasana, Cobra pose - Bhujangasana and Locust pose - Shalabhasana

‘Swa’ translates to one’s own and ‘adhishthana’ means dwelling or abode.
Swadhishthana Chakra is situated at the lower end of the sacrum, the base of the spine. It is associated with the reproductive organs, kidneys, bladder and all fluid within the body.
Swadhishthana chakra is connected with the element of water and the sense of taste.
It is often symbolised by the colour orange, a lotus flower with six petals and relates to the unconscious aspect of our nature. Its corresponding mantra is VAM.
The positive attributes of the Swadhishthana Chakra are joy, faith, self-confidence and energy. Misdirected Manifestations include jealousy, desire, lust and pride.

Mooladhara Chakra

MooladharaThe First Chakra |Root Chakra

>>Sanskrit: Mooladhara
>>Color: red
>>Element: earth
>>Development: from womb to 12 months of age.
>>Location: base of the spine
>>Balanced Qualities: groundedness, stability
>>Imbalanced Qualities: unsettled feelings and tendencies
>>Main Right: to have and to be present
>>
Body Location Where Physical Issues May Occur: legs and feet


>>
Postures that Balance Chakra: Grounding into feet poses like Palm tree pose - Tadasana, Side-Angle Pose - Parsvakonasana and Warrior Pose - Virabhadrasana

‘Moola’ translates to root and ‘ashara’ means support thus, this centre is also known as the base chakra.
Mooladhara Chakra is located at the perineum in men and posterior to the cervix in women.

It relates to the lower limbs and eliminatory organs and is associated with the bones, teeth, nails, prostate gland and blood.
Mooladhara chakra is connected with the element of earth and the sense of smell.

It is often symbolised by the colour red and a lotus flower with four petals. Its corresponding mantra is LAM.

The positive attributes of the Mooladhara Chakra are loyalty, courage, steadfastness and groundedness. Misdirected Manifestations include stubbornness, laziness, inertia and domination by one's physical desires.

A balanced or clear Root Chakra is steady and grounded. If unbalanced or blocked, one can have issues with survival—both financially and domestic. Trust and appropriate boundaries can also be challenged.

The main right of your First Chakra is for you to find more safety and grounding so that you can trust in the wisdom of your body with your surroundings.

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