How does Yoga work?


Yoga addresses body, mind, and spirit.  It’s a complete system of physical, emotional, and spiritual development, the original holistic method dating back five thousand years.  The science of Yoga began to evolve as the ancients investigated the essential nature of life, how to live in balance and harmony with the universe.  From its early beginnings, Yoga offered a healthy and balanced approach, a way of life that connected body, mind, and spirit.

It’s easy to understand why Yoga has value in our world today.  Too often we tend to be ruled by our heads and the constant churning of the mind.  We get out of touch with the body and the breath.  We can feel alienated, disconnected, and stressed.  Yoga helps us to overcome this lack of awareness, to reconnect, and establish equanimity.

Yoga teaches us to become more aware of how we move. . . and not just “on the mat”.  How do you reach for something on a shelf?  How do you bend to pick up something from the floor?  Is the action strained or do you move with ease?  When you get in touch with your body and your breath, you naturally find yourself moving easier.  As the breath flows, movement flows.  This is the essence of Yoga.

Your body is your true teacher.  Let the movement come from within.  Let it flow effortlessly through your body.  If you doubt this approach, may I direct  you to the source.  In a translation of the Sutras by Rama Prasad, “effortless attitude” and a “loosening of effort through attention” are the suggested means of learning postures.  My discovery of these passages confirms my initial belief that striving to achieve has never been the intent of Yoga practice.  Strain and effort are contrary to the body’s nature.  We were designed to move easily.  Through Yoga we rediscover that sense of ease.

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