Back To The Basics – Niyama V

My dear Yogis and Yoginis,

The last Niyama is called Ishvara Pranidhana
(Surrender to God):
“Do the best that you can (abhyasa) without concern for the result (vairagya). Understand that you do not control everything, but that there is an underlying Universal Force that directs you.
Remember your link to that Big Self;
you are not limited, you are unbound and free.
~ Alan Finger 
(How to expand the little self to merge into the big self)

~ ~ ~

Yoga in no way forces the idea of God or religion upon anyone, but as you might have noticed by listening to the things your yoga teacher may say; there is an underlying idea that something bigger, more
profound and pure exists other than ourselves. …

…we’ve all heard many times before – we are in fact all one. 
In the Upanishads, the word Isvara means ‘a state of collective
consciousness’, which tells us – in this sense – that there isn’t a Godlike figure we are supposed to worship or devote our actions to at all, rather ‘God’ represents this collective consciousness, and therefore represents all of us too.

Isvara Pranidhana in your asana practice

Surrender and rest: … Knowing when we need to rest shows a huge amount of understanding of ourselves, respect for our bodies, and
allows our practice to support us for a lifetime. 

Surrender to the posture: Sometimes asana practice is about finding comfort within discomfort, leaning into our boundaries and learning ways in which to deal with difficult situations…
The idea of ‘surrendering’ can also be applied to the intention we set at the beginning of practice; Isvara Pranidhana can be thought of as
‘offering up the results of one’s actions to the divine’or perhaps to
humanity. In this way, our asana practice becomes less about what it can do for us, but how we can help ourselves stay healthy enough to help the world around us. 

Isvara Pranidhaha in your day-to-day life

In our daily life off the mat, Isvara Pranishana can be seen as less of a devotional dedication or a surrendering, and more of an ‘opening up to what is’, and instead of fighting against life’s twists and turns,
remaining open to experiencing life as it unfolds…
~ Emma Newlyn

Like applying the yamas, when trying to put the niyamas into practice, remember to do what is possible for you at this time. Since the yamas and niyamas may uncover some well-practiced patterns in your being, it is important to learn to recognize if these practices are generating pain or if they are making you more aware of discomfort that you have learned to live with or ignore. Confusing these two outcomes can keep you from applying the yamas and niyamas in beneficial ways.
Like with any other practice, you are in charge of monitoring that you are doing what you think you are doing and that what you are doing is moving you towards greater clarity and integrated harmony.

One more way of practicing ishvara pranidhana is by using the mantra, I SURRENDER MY ILLUSION OF CONTROL.
~ Simple Yoga

Friday 28.10

Monday 31.10.
Boundaries & Comfort

Wednesday 02.11.
Clarity & Harmony

Thursday 03.11.
Open Theme
Yogis Choice

Friday 04.11.
Slow Flow

By creating coherence in our energy body and awareness of our
attitude, we influence the outcomes in our life 🙂




Back To The Basics – Niyama IV

My dear Yogis and Yoginis,

The fourth Niyama is called Svadhyaha
(Self-study, self-understanding):

“The little self needs a road map to guide it to the Big Self, so
knowledge is necessary to inspire and direct one.
However, one cannot experience the destination by reading a map, one must go on the journey. Study the Big Self to experience the
underlying reason for living.”
~ Alan Finger 
(How to expand the little self to merge into the big self)

~ ~ ~

Knowing yourself, knowing your tendencies and patterns is essential in order to recognize how those patterns influence the quality of your participation in your life. Without knowing your ways of being you are at the mercy of those patterns without really understanding why some obstacles keep appearing along your path. Similarly, it may be difficult to harness useful ways of being to enhance your experience…

Engaging in self-inquiry, that is, when you explore yourself with
genuine curiosity, you come to recognize that you have never been in a vacuum. You have never been isolated from the world around you.
In fact, you eventually realize that everything that you can perceive is connected to you either directly or indirectly, because you are deeply embedded in the universe…

Svadhyaya means cultivating a healthy curiosity about yourself so that you can see clearly how your habit patterns and tendencies may
influence your thoughts, moods,
motivations, breath, posture, movement, and actions.
Keep in mind that some patterns may be useful in one context and
unhelpful in another context. This healthy curiosity includes studying and trying to put into practice true wisdom.
~ Simple Yoga

When we get to know our small self – the self of our personality, our ego, and our identity – we learn the many habits, behaviors, and ways of relating to the world that have been conditioned by our
experiences. We may begin to study a particular chapter in our lives. Maybe a transformation happens with a deeper practice.

In order to transform, we need to get really intimate with these habits, behaviors, and perceptions so that we can identify where they’re
ultimately not serving us.  This awareness can bring great change, while also getting us in touch with our larger Soul Self,
our true nature.

Study the wisdom teachings
Practice Yoga
Spend alone time in nature
~ Robyn Cohen

“Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.”

Monday 10.10.
Tendencies & Habits

Wednesday 12.10.
Lighthearted Observation

Thursday 13.10.
Open Theme
Yogis Choice

Monday 17.10.
Movements of the Spine

Wednesday 19.10.
One more Layer
Slow Flow

Thursday 20.10.
Open Theme
Yogis Choice

In each yoga practice you get to know yourself a little better 🙂




Back To The Basics – Niyama III

My dear Yogis and Yoginis,

Coming to the third Niyama which is Tapas
(Burning, discipline)
One could think right away of the rather tasty little food dishes in Spain, but it is nothing even close to it.

“Physical impurities are burned out through asana and pranayama practice. the discipline of meditation removes unconscious patterns from the mind that haunt and limit you. Practice daily to find comfort, tolerance and peace.”
~ Alan Finger 
(How to expand the little self to merge into the big self)

~  ~  ~

“Traditionally yoga practice is a spiritual journey that aims to cleanse the body and mind of old and destructive habit patterns.
These patterns are called samskaras in Sanskrit, and we all have them.
Since samskaras are the most manifested embodiments of our thoughts and personality, we are very identified with them – and it
often causes us great emotional turmoil to change them.

There is a powerful inertia that drives the samskara cycle and, if left unchecked, the pattern will continue largely driven by unconscious motivating forces. Some samskaras are said to be benign, meaning that they do not generate further suffering. But the majority of the ones that govern our lives are not beneficial to our liberation and will
ultimately lead to more suffering. Working with the samskaras is like performing a deep operation of the mind; it isn’t something that can be undertaken in a haphazard manner…

This is Where Tapas Comes In …
Calls for discipline can be unpopular, and even sometimes thought of as negative. In our free-thinking, self-invented culture, many people hate the idea of following the rules. 

Well, in the yoga practice, there is a long history of the need for a
disciplined approach to spiritual practice. Called Tapas in Sanskrit,
discipline is discussed in all traditional forms of yoga practice.
Sometimes Tapas can be translated as austerities, which can be even more intimidating.
A softer translation comes from Swami Satchidananda, where Tapas is defined as the acceptance of those pains that lead to purification.

I love this definition because some overzealous students hear
discipline and use it as an excuse to practice with harshness and
severity, and even turn the practice into a kind of penance.
But, yoga is rooted in the path of balance, and extreme hardship is simply not recommended. Discipline in the yoga practice actually comes from love.”
~ Yoga Journal

“… Tapas begins with temporarily or permanently denying ourselves a particular desire – having a satisfying cup of coffee, a piece of
chocolate, or casual sex. Instead of instant gratification, we choose postponement. Then, gradually, postponement can be stepped up to become complete renunciation.
This kind of challenge to our habit patterns causes a certain degree of frustration in us. We begin to “stew in our own juices,” and this
generates psychic energy that can be used to power the process of

So frustration need not be a negative experience.
It is bound to feel that way so long as we are blindly attached to the object of whatever desire remains unfulfilled. But if we are able to
understand how the mind functions and see the value in going beyond attachment, we can derive great spiritual benefit even from
frustration. And as we become increasingly able to gain control over our impulses, we experience the delight that underlies creative 
self-frustration. We see that we are growing and that self-denial need not necessarily be unrewarding …”
~ Georg Feuerstein

Monday 03.10.
Let the breath move you
Slow Flow

Wednesday 05.10.
Finding your roots

Thursday 06.10.
Open Theme
Yogis Choice

Friday 07.10.
Moving from the Pelvis

I am proud of you that you show up for yourself and your
yoga practice regularly!



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