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"Do not, for one repulse, forego the purpose that you resolved to effect. "

- William Shakespeare, English poet & playwright

The essence of Yoga

By Editor on 21 June 2012

In essence all forms of yoga have the same goal: to unite the body and the mind. This is a holistic approach. The practitioner is seen as one being: a combination of body, mind and soul. Through the practice of asanas (poses), conscious breathing and meditation, energy can flow freely through the body as well as the mind, leaving you with a complete feeling, a feeling of wholeness.

Just like we have blood and lymphatic systems, according to yoga and many other eastern philosophies and sciences, we also have an energetic system.  A system of channels, which can be compared to veins through which your energy flows. Our energy channels can be blocked for different reasons: malnutrition, wrong posture, emotions and thoughts. Through the asana practice, the stored energy is released, and through conscious breathing the nadis (channels) open up allowing the energy to flow through. Waste products leave the body through the breath, perspiration and urination. Energy that has been stored in certain areas of the body can flow freely again. When this happens, you no longer feel the separation and limitation of the body and mind but you experience yourself as being one.

No matter what type of yoga style you choose, they all should be guiding you through these principles. Your style is a personal choice but the essence is all the same for us, to experience wholeness. As lamps come in different shapes and sizes so do we as human beings, yet we all contain the same light, the same oneness.

When practicing yoga let go of expectations of how you should look, how far you can stretch or how deep you can bend. Find your range, breathe and surrender to what is right for you at this moment. You will then create space for things to shift and who knows, maybe even get a bit further into a posture. And if you don’t that’s just as good too.