Chitta is a Sanskrit as well as Pali language word which means the consciousness of the human mind. In the famous book of Patanjali Yoga Sutra, he describes Chitta in detail. We can find the word Chitta is Buddhist literature too but we are focusing this article what Patanjali describes in his book of yoga. The most beautiful exposition of Yoga Sutra can be found in Vyasa’s writing. He has described five types of Chitta and their nature as Patanjali wrote. Vyasa has made Yoga Sutra very simple to understand.
The meaning of Chitta is the mind or our heart or the emotional part of our self which can affect all our activities of daily life. Chitta can lead us in the direction of its nature. There are five states of our chitta. We can upgrade our state of Chitta by regular practice of yoga. Yoga can neutralize our Chitta and maintain the peace of mind. Patanjali focuses on removing the Brittis (the fluctuation of the mind) of Chitta. The five types of Chittas are as follows:
Bikshipta (Partially Concentrated)
Ekagra (One Pointed)
1. Kshipta (Distracted)
Kshipta is the state of mind where most of the people are standing, most of the time. In general, people are in this state with the fluctuation of the mind. In the waking time we are in this state but not in sleeping. In this state, we are in the reckless situation. Our mind fluctuates with thoughts and feelings. This state is led by the Rajas Guna. In this state, people run for the materialistic gain. They want to work more and more for their growth. The chain of our desire never ends and we can’t come out from this state without great commitment. They indulge in love and hate. They have the ambition to achieve something in their life. They want to show to the people who he or she is.
Attachment and selfishness lead us to this state of mind. This is the agitated state of the mind. The mind can’t stay in one place and it scatters around different affairs of our life. We have to practice to be one-minded to get rid of this state. The regular practice of yoga can bring us one-mindedness.
2. Mudha (Dull)
Mudha is the lowest state of our consciousness of the mind. This state of our mind leads us to the dullness, laziness, delusion, fear, and sleepiness. Lust, greed and other many negative feelings can cause this kind of state of mind. This is the state; one doesn’t want to work anymore. The person in this state has the bad habits and he or she can’t think what is wrong and what is right. The restless mind brings us in this state. This state of the mind is led by the Tama Guna. This kind of mind is not alert to anything.
In this state of the mind, we can’t perform any creative activities because the mind becomes lethargic. Sometimes our mind can’t decide what to do and can’t think anymore. In that state of mind, we can be in the Mudha state. This kind of state of mind can lead us to the depression if we are in this state for the long period of time. This kind of mind is bad for anyone and we have to come out of this mind as soon as possible. In yogic practice, we can find the way to be free from this state of mind.
3. Bikshipta (Partially concentrated)
This is the state of our mind, sometimes concentrated and sometimes distracted. In the search for spirituality, we want to become one-minded but our mind cannot be still. This is the mid-state in the quest for higher achievement. We are led by the Sattva Guna sometimes and sometimes we cannot be in sattva guna. We can be in the rajas and tamas sometimes.
In this state, our mind cannot focus continuously on the spiritual path. In the concentration, we can be distracted and we have to bring our awareness again. It is not negative but we have to come out from distraction to the concentration again and again. We have to determine to continue the spiritual path at any cost. We should have firm determination to continue our spiritual path despite the distraction. We don’t have to be affected by any kinds of fluctuation of our mind.
4. Ekagra (One Pointed)
In the path of spirituality when we can focus on the meditation only, we can be in the Ekagra (Partially concentrated) state. This is the state of one-mindedness in our goal. If we cross the Bikshipta state, we can be in this state. It is the higher state of the spiritual path but not the highest state. We have to continue to practice our task in this state even we get the hints of our successful ascendance.
Ekagra Chitta is led by the Satva Gun. When the detachment increases with worldly affairs in our practice of yoga, we can realize that we are in the Ekagra state. Yogis are in this state and this can be said the Short-term Samadhi, lower Samadhi. Yogis can stay in one place without eating anything in the meditation. They get the wisdom inside.
Niruddha is the state of our mind which is the highest. In this state, the yogis are in the state of beyond three Gunas. This is the state of higher Samadhi or the state of Kaibalya, as many Hindu scriptures mentioned. The perfected yogi only can be in this state. In this state, yogi gets the liberation.
This is the state of complete control of the mind in the hand of Yogi. Yogi can lead his thoughts and feelings what he wants. He doesn’t become a slave to the thoughts rather than the yogi can control all the thoughts and feelings. Now, he needs nothing but he does everything as usual. No task is become compelled for him to do. He never affects the outside situation of this world. He doesn’t walk by the ego, his ego totally dissolves and he gets the supreme state. In this state, all the Brittis of Chitta can be controlled by the yogis. All three Gunas are balanced and yogi becomes more than Gunas.
In this way, we can say that the Niruddha Chitta is the higher state of our mind. To get this state, we have to practice yoga continuously. When we can omit all the Brittis of our Chitta, our goal of spirituality can be achieved. Without removing all the fluctuations of our mind, we can’t achieve the Niruddha state of Chitta. This may take a long period of time; we should continue our journey without rushing. We have to be happy in the process of our journey.
अष्टाङ्ग योग का सम्बन्धमा लेखिएको पहिलो आधिकारिक ग्रन्थ पतञ्जली योग-सुत्र हो । योगश्चित्तबृत्ति निरोध भनेर यसमा योगलाई चित्तबृत्तिबाट निरोधको अवस्था भनेको छ । अष्टाङ्ग योग का बिभिन्न आठ चरण पार गरेर त्यो अवस्था हासिल गर्न सकिन्छ भन्ने बैज्ञानिक ब्याख्या छ त्यहाॅ ।
१. यम: अष्टाङ्ग योग पहिलो चरण
अष्टाङ्ग योग को पहिलो पाइला यम हो । यम भनेको नैतिकता हो । आफुलाई नैतिक बलमा जागृत बनाउनु यसको उद्देश्य हो । नैतिकता सफल जीवनको पहिलो आधार हो । त्यसैले पतञ्जलीले यसलाई सुरूमा नै राख्नुभयो । नैतिकताको अभ्यासबाट नै योगको बाटो सुरू हुन्छ ।
बैज्ञानिकहरूले पनि नैतिकवान ब्यक्तिलाई कम मानसिक समस्या हुने कुरा प्रमाणित गरेका छन् । सफलताको नियमको आधार पनि नैतिकता नै हो । पतञ्जलीले नैतिकतालाई पनि बिभिन्न पाॅच भागमा बिभाजन गरेका छन् । ती निम्न छन्:
हिंसा तीन प्रकारका हुन्छन्
♢ कायीक: भौतिक शरीरद्वारा अरूलाई चोट पु-याउनु ।
♢ बाचिक: बोलेर अरूलाई चोट पु-याउनु ।
♢ मानसिक: कसैको बारेमा अहित सोच्नु या अरूलाई चोट परोस् भनेर कामना गर्नु ।
यी तीनै हिंसा नगर्नु अहिंसा हो । बुद्धको मुख्य उपदेश पनि यही हो । अरूलाई चोट पु-याउने उद्देश्यले कुनै कार्य गर्नु हुॅदैन । यदि नजानेर चोट पुगेको छ भने माफी माग्नुपर्छ । यदि सीधै गएर माफी माग्न गाह्रो हुन्छ भने मनमनमा माफी माग्नुपर्छ ।
अहिले अमेरिका र युरोपलगायत बिकसित देशहरूमा एउटा नयाॅ ब्यबसायिक अभियान सुरू भएको छ । त्यो पनि अहिंसाको ब्यबहारिक प्रयोग हो । Win-win Theory. दुबै पक्षको हीतका लागि काम गर्ने । सफलताका गुरूहरूले पनि सफलताको एउटा अत्यन्तै महत्वपूर्ण पाइलाका रूपमा यो सिद्दान्तलाई लिएका छन् । अरूलाई हित गरियो भने स्वतः आफ्नो हीत हुन्छ भन्ने सिद्दान्त पश्चिमा ब्यबसायमा फस्टाउॅदै गएको छ । अरूलाई दुःख पु-याएर प्रप्त गरेको सफलता क्षणिक हुन्छ यो संसारमा पनि । त्यो कुरालाई युरोपियनले अहिले बुझ्दैछन् जुन कुरा हजारौं बर्ष पहिले पूर्बमा बिकास भएको थियो ।
सत्य भन्ने शब्द धेरै सुनिएको शब्द हो । तर, यसको अर्थमा भने अलि स्पष्ट नभएझैं लाग्छ । सत्य आफुप्रतिको इमान्दारिता र अरूप्रतिको इमान्दारिताको जोड हो । सत्यले सॅधै खुसी ल्याउॅछ यदी ल्याएन भने त्यहाॅ कतै गडबड छ भन्ने बुझ्नुपर्छ । गान्धीले सत्यमा रहेर अहिंसात्मक आन्दोलन चलाए । मार्टिन लुथर किंग र नेल्सन मण्डेलाले पनि सत्यको ब्यबहारिक प्रयोग गरे ।
हाम्रो जीवनमा सत्यको ठूलो महत्व छ । सत्यमा अडिग रहने मान्छे स्वाभिमानी हुन्छ । सत्य जीवनको पहिलो आधार हो भन्ने कुरा संसारका धनी ब्यक्तिहरूको जीवनी पढेर प्रष्ट हुन सकिन्छ ।
यदी हामी अरूसॅग सत्य देखिन खोज्ने र आफुभित्र सत्यता नहुने हो भने त्यस्तो अवस्था देखावटी हुन सक्छ ।
चोरी नगर्नु तथा चोरी गर्ने प्रबृत्तिको नहुनु नै अस्तेय हो ।
ब्रह्मचर्यका दुई पाटा छन्
♢ ब्रह्म ज्ञानमा आफुलाई लगाउनु । ब्रह्म ज्ञानप्रतिको चासो हुनु ।
♢ ईन्द्रियजनित अथवा ईन्द्रियबाट प्राप्त हुने क्षणिक सुखलाई नियन्त्रण गर्नु वा त्यसलाई बुझेर त्यतातिरको ध्यान कम गर्नु ।
आफुलाई आवस्यक पर्ने कुराहरूको मात्र संकलन गर्नु । कुरा आवस्यक नै छैन भने त्यसको संग्रह गर्नु ठीक होइन । एक भए पुग्छ भने दुई चाॅहिदैन । दुई भए पुग्छ भने तीन चाॅहिदैन । तीन भए पुग्छ भने चार चाॅहिदैन । अरूको सामानको ईच्छा नगर्नु पनि अपरिग्रह हो । आफुसॅग जे छ त्यसमा सन्तुष्ट हुन सक्नु र आफुसॅग छ भन्दैमा अनावश्यक सामानहरूको संग्रह नगर्नु नै अपरिग्रह हो । आफुसॅग बढी भएको कुरा अरू कसैसॅग छैन भने त्यो अरूलाई दिनु पनि हाम्रो कर्तब्य हो ।
२. नियम : अष्टाङ्ग योग दोश्रो चरण
पतञ्जली योगसूत्रको दोस्रो सूत्र हो नियम । यम भनेको सामाजिक नैतिकता हो भने नियम भनेको व्यक्तिगत नैतिकता हो । यसअन्तर्गत पाॅचवटा नियम पर्दछन् ।
(क) शौच – शरीर र मन की शुद्धि नै शौच हो ।
(ख) संतोष – सन्तुष्ट र प्रसन्न रहनु नै सन्तोष हो ।
(ग) तप – स्वयंलाई आत्मानुशासनमा राख्नु नै तप हो । जसरी पनि आफ्नो साधनालाई जारी राख्छु भन्ने संकल्प हो तप ।
(घ) स्वाध्याय – आत्मचिन्तन गर्नु । अध्ययन गर्नु र ज्ञान सुन्नु ।
(च) ईश्वर-प्रणिधान – ईश्वरप्रति पूर्ण समर्पण, पूर्ण श्रद्धासहित ढुक्कका साथ बाॅच्नु । ईश्वरप्रति पूर्ण बिश्वास हुनु ।
३. आसन : अष्टाङ्ग योग तेश्रो चरण
सामान्यतया हामीले योगासनलाई नै सम्पूर्ण योग ठान्छौं । तर योगाआसन योगको एउटा पाटो हो । योगले हामीलाई शारीरिक तथा मानसिक रूपमा स्वस्थ राख्छ । स्मरण शक्ति बढाउने र दिनभरि जागरूक बनाउॅछ आसनले । आसनले हामीमा आत्मबिश्वास जगाउनुका साथै स्वाभिमानी पनि बनाउॅछ ।
४. प्राणायाम : अष्टाङ्ग योग चौथो चरण
यो श्वास लिने खास तरिका हो । स्वासद्वारा हाम्रा कोषहरूमा अक्सिजन बृद्धि गरेर प्राणायामले मानसिक तथा शारीरिक रूपमा स्वस्थ बनाउॅछ । यसले शरीरका बिकार हटाएर शरीर, मन र प्राणलाई शुद्ध पार्छ ।
५. प्रत्याहार : अष्टाङ्ग योग पाचौं चरण
इन्द्रियलाई नियन्त्रण गर्नु । अरू बाहिरी आकर्षणबाट आफुलाई पर राख्नु । बाहिरी आकर्षण क्षणिक हो भन्ने बुझ्नु । चित्तलाई ईश्वर स्मरणमा लगाउने हरसम्भव प्रयास गर्नु । सानासाना लोभमा नफस्नु ।
६. धारणा : अष्टाङ्ग योग छैटौं चरण
एकाग्रचित्त हुनु । चित्तलाई एकाग्र बनाएर एउटै सहज आसनमा बस्नु । सामान्तया हामीले जसलाई ध्यान भन्छौं त्यो धारणा हो । योग गुरूहरूले सिकाउने ध्यान नै धारणा भनेर बुझ्नुपर्छ । ध्यान त सिकाउनै मिल्दैन त्यो घट्ने कुरा हो ।
७. ध्यान : अष्टाङ्ग योग सातौं चरण
धारणामा आफुलाई स्थीर गराउॅदै जाॅदा ध्यान घट्छ । ध्यान घट्दा हामीलाई चरम आनन्दको अनुभूति हुन्छ । ध्यान घटिसकेपछि हामी निरन्तर रूपमा अगाडि बढ्नुपर्छ । ध्यान घटेपछि साधकलाई अध्यात्मको रस लाग्न सुरू गर्छ र उसले त्योभन्दा आनन्दको क्षण अरू कुनै पनि अनुअव गरेको हुॅदैन । त्यसपछि सबै शास्त्र ठीक रहेछन् भन्ने महसुस गर्न थाल्छ । उसको आॅखाको हेराइमा अनौठो परिवर्तन हुन्छ । आफु र अरूमा उसले फरक देख्दैन । हरेक घटनामा धन्यबादी हुन्छ । जीवनलाई उत्सव ठानेर बाॅच्छ । जीवनको सार्थकता अनुभूति गर्छ ।
८. समाधि : अष्टाङ्ग योग आठौं चरण
आत्मासॅग जोडिनु । शब्दले ब्याख्या गर्न नसकिने परम-चैतन्यको अवस्था हो यो । समाधी दुई किसिमका हुन्छन् ।
क) सबिकल्प समाधि: केही समयका लागि समाधिमा जाने र फेरि समाधिबाट बाहिर आउने अवस्था हो यो ।
ख) निर्बिकल्प समाधि: निरन्तर समाधिमा स्थित रहने अवस्था ।
Kripalu yoga was founded by Amrit Desai in the United States in the name of his Indian Guru Shree Kripalvananda. The etymological meaning of Kripalu is a very kind person or a companionate person in Hindi language. Kripalu yoga starts with the understanding of the structure of our body and how to really start poses. It should be considered that the body of every person is different and we should do yoga with our body’s quality. We have to respect the quality of our body and mind in doing yoga. If our mind is more logical, we have to add the study of the knowledge too. Some can dedicate themselves to some higher being, for those the prayer is suitable. We should not start yoga with reading books or watching the videos but we have to practice yoga by knowing our body’s quality perfectly in the guidance of a trained yoga teacher.
There are a lot of yoga styles in the world among them Kripalu yoga is the genre of the Hatha yoga system. Mainly yoga teaches us how to live our life more energetic, happy, and joyful, disease free, and without mental pressure. In yoga three parts of practice are important. Body is the outer part of our being. Body is the first part of yoga practice. We should start our journey with our body. The mind is the second layer of our being and our spirit is the last part of the being to open. To nourish our body is easy task than other parts of being but it has blockages from the beginning of our life so we have to give more time open the blockages of the body. If our body becomes pure, our journey starts to be easier. If we overcome our body we can enter into our mind.
Kripalu yoga is different in the sense that it holds the poses more than other yoga types. When we hold longer the poses, we get the different experience and can have the more benefits. Holding the poses brings us into the deep relaxation. The meditation is more emphasized in this yoga. It focuses on the relaxation than other styles of yoga. In the beginning, this yoga seems to be very different than others but when we adopt we feel the different taste of this yoga than any other yoga styles in the world. The poses are the same from the old tradition of yoga but its beauty is in its doing because it gives us deeper satisfaction.
Kripalu yoga focuses on the internal inspiration and the spirit. Our spirit has the capacity to be anything in this world. Kripalu yoga is the best way for the transformation of our body, mind, and spirit. Kripalu yoga is designed in a simple way so that everyone can perform. This yoga is for everyone who wants to do yoga in their life. This yoga can be said the gentle yoga. Kripalu yoga helps us to be strong for inner side and gives us the inspiration to life with lively.
As the goal of every yoga styles of the world, Kripalu yoga has its goal to harmonize our body, mind and spirit. This yoga aims to join our self with the universal self. The ultimate purpose of Kripalu yoga is to be enlightened in our life. When we receive enlightenment in our life, we can be happy every moment and help to promote humanity. Humanity seeks such activists who are selfless in their life and advocate the message of peace and prosperity. To make this world beautiful and livable, we have to work for the change of the consciousness of the people. We have to spread the knowledge of yoga all around the world.
Kripalu yoga helps to make our body vital and our mind calm. This yoga can make us relief from our stresses and discomforts of the mind. It gives us the positive attitude to see our life and this world. This yoga specially focuses on our daily life and how we can apply yoga with our busy life. No matter in which situation we are, we can apply this yoga continuously. This yoga teaches us to love all the aspects of our life and all the parts of the world. The most beautiful part of this yoga is that it inspires us to love the self. We have to love our body and our pure self, which cannot be seen but can be realized.
By loving the self, our relation becomes pure and spotless. We cannot love to others if we can’t love ourselves being sincere. This yoga also teaches every human society to love every one of the world for the sake of humanity. As mentioned before Kripalu yoga gives the emphasis all three dimensions of our life, body, mind, and spirit. All three are the important factors of our life and we have to purify all of them. If we can’t make pure our body, we can’t enter into our mind. When yoga balances all the systems of our body, then our structure becomes healthy and sound. If we can’t improve our state of mind, we never can go into the spirit level. We have to eliminate all the blockages in our body first and then blockages of the mind. When we make our mind pure, the gateway to our spirit will open and we can easily encounter with our true self.
Kripalu yoga brings us into the clarity of the mind and fitness of the body. It is helpful for the meaningful life in this world. It is not only the way to have the life of our choice but also it is the medium to have a wonderful experience in our life. It is the balance of natural and the materialistic life. Every one of the world search for the way out from the day to day hectic life and this yoga become the weapon of bringing us to the heavenly life. Body is regarded as the temple to live God, it is the sacred place and we should keep it pure. Scientists also discovered that where there is clean, there can be found positive energy. Kripalu yoga focuses on the prayer to establish our divine relationship.
The word “Tantra” is a Sanskrit word which means a technique or a technology. Tantra also means a systematic applicable, “instrument, system, practice, text, theory”. The Rigveda gives the meaning of Tantra as “weave, wrap or loom”. It also gives the meaning to expand and explore. The scripture in Sanskrit states,-“Tanyate vistarayate gyanan anenan iti tantram” which means “Knowledge is weaved through tantra and expanded”. Tantra is a spiritual or inner technology. We can find the meaning of Tantra as “principal or essential part, model, feature, main point, feature” in the post-Vedic text. Tantra Yoga requires subjective method, not an objective method. It is an individual method. It is found that the earliest definition is exposed in the ancient texts of Panini, Patanjali, and the literature of the language focused, ritual-oriented Mimamsa school of Hindu Philosophy. Tantra is found in different religion. Hindu mostly associate tantra with its goddess called Shaktism. It is followed by Shaivism, Ramanandi, Vaishnavism etc. Tantra is also found in Buddhist literature. Different sects of group practice tantra in their own ways.
Nowadays maximum people link the “tantra” with sex and sexual activities. But it is a misconception. It is true that Tantric practice improves sex life and can give control over sex. However, this is the only byproduct. The main purpose of Tantra is to reach up to enlightenment state. Sex is a basic instinct and the powerful energy. The pleasure that sex gives, is perishable. Tantra gives bliss, satisfaction and pleasure, is sustainable. Tantra gives the strength to reach up to Samadhi. We can also say that Tantra transforms sex energy to divine energy. It controls all the human instincts like love, hate, greed, lust, ego, anger etc. and transforms. It is the truth that whatever can degrade you, it can upgrade you as well. Unbalanced food, alcoholic drinks, and uncontrolled sex can ruin an individual. However, if there is a systematic way for these three things, then these can lift the individual up. Tantra uses these things as key for the progress of the individual. The sexuality tends to find release at the lower level of energy while tantra is to build the energy from the basic level to the uppermost dimension of the energy system. It is said that there are 114 energy manifestation centers throughout the body, referred chakras. The energy can be spilled from these centers. In order to build these centers, every basic instinct, like sexual instinct, anger instinct, greed instinct, emotion, intellect, etc must be under control and it should be built. Our whole instinct must be dedicated towards the particular goal. If one goes towards negative act, the entire built-up energy and our ambition may be lost. Sometimes people start using the certain substance in the name of Tantra. If people do not follow a limit and a strong discipline then it will be an only addiction. So they miss the path. This is an external part of Tantra. The internal part of tantra is a completely opposite path on the tantra system which is original and subject.
Tantra makes realize that an individual is able to use his energy to make the things happen. To make different task possible one may have to may not have to use his body or mind. Tantra accumulates the strength from all the types of human instinct which makes the impossible to be possible. Tantra draws all the sciences like astrology, numerology, palmistry, chemistry, alchemy, Ayurveda, psychology, geometry etc. Whatever the things are required for the human beings in their daily life for their perfect life, those all things are combined together and applied in tantra yoga. Tantra aims to take an individual to the super-conscious state. Its purpose is to expand awareness in all state of consciousness, whether moving state, unmoved state, dream state or sleep state. Our entire life is guided ignorance and unconsciousness. We are not aware of our activities. Our mind is indulged and attached to selfishness, greed, illusion etc. So human beings do a lot of mistakes. As we become aware then we can be free from these things. All the blockage of the path starts being cleared. We cannot do any mistake when we are conscious.
For the practice of Tantra Yoga, there is a strong unification of Asana, Pranayama, Bandha (energy Lock), Mudra, Mantra, and Chakra (energy center). Besides, visualization of deities, Yantra, meditation is an inseparable part of tantra yoga. It is a special combination to improve biology, psychology which develops an individual in all aspects. The purpose of tantra yoga is to awaken Kundalini Energy. These types of yogic practices are very helpful to meet the purpose of Tantra Yoga. This helps to know all the factors that influence thoughts and feelings to go beyond the obstacles arising due to ignorance. It refreshes the thoughts, instincts, and emotion and creates peace and harmony. As we progress on the path tantra promotes a one-pointedness and centeredness to free from the limitation and explore the consciousness.
There is a universal rule of creation, preservation, and destruction. This is caused due to two principles: static and dynamic principle. The inner part is static and external part is dynamic. This universal rule exists till the universe exists. The desire (ichha-shakti) of Brahma (the divine) is the motivating force for this eternal process. Many spiritual sciences state that one should renounce all the desire in order to get enlightenment. But Tantra never says so. The trial to be desireless is itself a strong desire. Thus it is paradox about desirefulness or desirelessness. Yet it suggests the individual to be happy and satisfied with what one possesses. Desires are natural and it remains till we live. When the desires mislead the people, they run after it. Their uncontrolled emotion and instinct may ruin their life and blocks the path of progress. People become the slave of their desire. Tantra Yoga provides the key to reprogram the mind and become its master. It teaches to be the master of own mind and desire. Tantra Yoga saves from being the slave of the mind.
Iyengar yoga is the type of Hatha yoga named after its founder B. K. S. Iyengar. It is also the combination of the three parts of yoga, Postures, breathing exercise and meditation as most of the Hatha yoga systems in the world and its popular part is perfection in postures. Its beauty can be seen in the complete way of doing postures. It focuses on going postures from simple to complex. Iyengar yoga’s main features are flexibility, stability, and awareness. This yoga seeks perfection in the postures and the perfect result from doing yoga. Perfect postures can fulfill our passion for yoga in our life and give us the complete satisfaction and benefits. Iyengar said that postures are an essential part of yoga journey in our life but they are not the end aim of yoga.
Iyengar Yoga is helpful to all types of people. It doesn’t discriminate anyone but it wants to collect everyone in its boundary. Iyengar yoga is for everyone and it wants to keep in its surrounding to every person of the world. Either someone is strong or weak; there is the place for all of them in this yoga. Iyengar yoga is the set of yoga which can be practiced by the different category of the people.
B. K. S. Iyengar managed more than 200 types of classical yoga poses in his own modality. He further re-categorized different breathing exercises in his own system. Iyengar yoga is a development of the practice of body, mind, and spirit to be liberated in life as the main purpose of the most of the yoga types of the earth. This yoga first focuses on the postures because postures are the beginning part of yoga. If we can’t do postures perfectly, we can’t go ahead perfectly. After getting perfection in our postures, we can go ahead in the field of spirituality more confidentially.
The base of Iyengar yoga is the eight limbs of Patanjali’s ‘Yoga Sutra’, the first scientific book about yoga and one of the most famous scriptures of Hindu philosophy. Eight limbs of Patanjali are the main foundation of yoga in modern times. This formula has the scientific ways to apply yoga in our daily life. This scripture describes the different levels of the spiritual path and gives the guidance to those who really want to walk in the path of yoga.
In Iyengar yoga, the structure in poses is very important. This yoga is also good for the physical and mental well-being. It can help to heal most of the mental and physical diseases and prevent us from many illnesses in our life.
How this yoga is different than other yoga types may be the main concern of the people who are searching the best yoga type to start in their life. Why do we have to choose this special Iyengar yoga in our life among many types?
Iyengar yoga is designed by considering the small and small factors of our body. It focuses on the arrangement of our body when we perform yoga. It uses the different types of props in the practice of yoga. Using props is especially for the people who can’t perform yoga due to their weakness. Those props help us to maintain the balance of our body. Iyengar yoga for the sick and weak people uses supports to make comfortable. For the support, we can use sandbags, benches, blocks, straps etc. Those kinds of props can be very comfortable for our muscles. They are the real ways of making the less muscular effort while doing yoga.
In doing postures of Iyengar yoga, students should be alert being calm in the parts of the body where they are feeling the sensation. They have to bring their awareness to each breathing and body parts where there is the pressure. When we do yoga, our attention should be only on doing asanas because awareness is the most important factor in yoga. Slowly we become habitual in doing asanas. We don’t have to sleep but we have to be silent, peaceful, and emptiness. We should be fully conscious.
Iyengar yoga is different than other types of yoga because the teachers of this yoga are highly experienced and they know how to teach yoga to different personalities. Teachers teach Iyengar yoga in their direct observation for every student of yoga. In the class of Iyengar yoga, we can find the more supervision from the side of the teacher. Teachers focus our every part of doing yoga and if we do some mistakes, they correct us immediately. The power of observation of the teacher is very appreciable because they are trained by such deep level to fit them to teach at a micro level.
The beginning part of the Iyengar yoga is the standing poses and simple postures. Slowly, there will be forward bending and back bending. After that, twists, inversion, and restorative poses are practiced. At the last part of the yoga session, there will be a deep relaxation. For the deep relaxation, there usually can be done Savasana (Corpse Pose). When we do Savasana at the last part of the session, all the discomforts will disappear, satisfaction and peace of mind can be found. We can be in the state of bliss if we practice Iyengar yoga regularly for a long period of time.
Especially, we do Iyengar yoga for the flexibility of our body and to stretch our muscles. If we hold the postures for some minutes, our muscles start to be relaxed and toned. To keep our mind calm, we should do Iyengar yoga. Iyengar yoga helps us to be free from the pain of our body. This yoga improves our postures of the body’s parts such as the neck, back, and legs. Postures can help us to increase our self-esteem and self-respect. Yoga helps to strengthen our immunity power which prevents us from the diseases. Yoga frees us from the blockages of our body which is the best way to be protected from the diseases.
Iyengar yoga helps us to make our lifestyle better. Our lifestyle becomes simple when we start Iyengar yoga. In Iyengar yoga, we learn how to make better our eating habit which is the healthy eating habit. This yoga can also upgrade our breathing and respiratory system. It helps to make our mind alert and body fit.
Iyengar yoga helps us to increase our stamina and concentration power which is very useful to boost our memory power. This yoga can be the turning point to those who want another way of living in the world. Meditation can heal the stress of our mind that we gain the strength for our day to day busy life. Iyengar yoga is based on the gradual development of the difficult Asanas which help us to go in the deeper level in meditation. Meditation is the main dose of our spirit. If we can go into the deeper level, we can experience the higher state of happiness.
Iyengar yoga helps us to bring back the energy and the happiness in our life. It opens the most beautiful part of our life, positivity. It adjusts all the misbalances of our life and gives us the natural solutions for every problem which are connected with our life. For this very reason, Iyengar yoga can be the best yoga if you are searching one of the yoga types in your life.
Nada means sound and yoga means union. Nada yoga is the part of yoga where individual’s mind is unified with the cosmic consciousness through the flow of sounds. The theory of nada states all creatures of the cosmos consists sound vibration, called nada. According to Nada yoga, the building block of the universe is moving sound energy rather than matter and particles. The universe is the projection of sound alone. The nada Yogi believes that one eternal sound has created all five elements, five sense organs, five work organs, the fourfold mind, and the three gunas. Therefore they have the belief that a single divine sound is the creator of every seen and unseen things. The entire cosmos is a creation of that sound. Nada Yoga is the way to access and according to sound. The way of attaining the Samadhi through sound is called Nada Yoga. Sound plays an important role to achieve a deeper combination with both outer and inner cosmos. The vibration of sound or music is also used to remove the problematic psychological and spiritual condition. It also removes the obstruction in the individual consciousness. These sound vibrations clean the barriers for Samadhi path. Actually, Samadhi is the state of pure awareness which transcends mind and body. In this phase one discovers knowledge about body and world, emotional and cognitive intelligence and then an expansion of Atma (soul) into Nada or Shabda Brahma (God of Sound or word). Beyond it, there comes the experience of the Nirgun Brahma or pure consciousness. The practitioner remains on the witness stage.
All the parts of human body produce the sound. These body parts want to react and communicate with the sound of cosmos. They try to unify with the divine sound. But due to our busy lifestyle, we are unable to separate time to unify with the divine sound or Nada. As we practice to identify and hear the nada then our goal to the final destination will be successful.
The center of Nada is a matter of experience. Different types of practitioners trying to find the center of nada in different places of the body. Transcendental nada is said to be situated in the different centers. A devotee (Bhakata) of god tries to get his lord in Anahata Chakra. A meditator of the third eye tries to find the center of the institution in the Ajna chakra. Some other meditator and Vedantins try to find the center of Hiranyagarbha in Sahasrara chakra (center of a skull). Similarly, Nada Yogis set the center of nada in Bindu. The Bindu is yet to be discovered. There is a center where inaudible, continuous, unbroken, eternal and unbeaten sound rolls on. That center is called Bindu. Therefore to discover the nada one has to find the Bindu primarily and finally.
Nada is expressed in two parts: Ahad Nada (sound produced by striking two objects) and Anahad Nada (self-produced sound). Ahad Nada is also expressed external music and Anahad Nada is expressed internal music. For example sound of clap is produced by striking two palms. So this sound is called Ahad Nada. The aim of Nada is to take Ahad to Anahad. Ahad is external aspects and Anahad is internal aspects. First Nada is created and unify the mind with the Nada. As the practice becomes perfect, it takes to Anahad. “Aum” chanting is one of the best sounds for this work. Aum is the primal sound and uncreated vibration through which the universe is created. It is also the sound of the sun. Aum is the seed of all other sounds. The Anahad sound is heard at Anahat (heart) Chakra. From subatomic particles to bacteria and worms, from earth and moon to entire solar system, everything has their own sound and music. Distant galaxy, newborn stars, black holes etc all have their sounds. The entire universe hums with its sound frequency. As we also hum with a frequency of universe, we unite with it and transform from Ahad to Anahad. This process is known as Nada Yoga.
Besides, there are four types of Nada Yoga
It is transcendent sound. It is beyond the access of sense organ and mind. It reveals the truth that sound is heard in the different dimensions in the sphere of super consciousness.
The second stage of nada is subconscious sound. It has less frequency and more gross than para. Pashyanti is a Sanskrit word which means “that can be visualized or seen.” In a dream, sound can be perceived. The dream is neither conscious nor semi-conscious. But it is the part of the sub-conscious mind.
It is mental sound. It has lower frequencies than para and pashyanti. It is subtler than audible Vailkari.
It is spoken sound, so it is audible to the ears. It is producible by friction or by striking two things against one another.
As we practice nada yoga it heals the body, recovers mind and balances the person to become a fully functional person. It also works as therapy to lead a healthy life. It gives peace to mind, body, and soul. It improves concentration power and thinking capacity. It reduces anger, fear, anxiety, aggressiveness, etc. It creates an environment of joy, peace, and harmony. It refreshes whole mind and body and helps to live every moment to the fullest every day.
Steps for practicing Nada Yoga
- Choose a peace and clean place to practice Nada Yoga.
- Sit down on a mat in a comfortable pose- sukhasana, Vajrasana, siddhasana, padmasana, ardha-padmasana etc.
- With closed eyes, concentrate on breathing. Try to make the breath long and deep.
After doing this, there are varieties of ways for the practice of nada. We can practice anyone ways as we like:
Way no 1) Play a soothing, serene and divine sound. Focus and concentrate on it. Immerse yourself deeper and deeper with the sound. Then slowly shift the focus inwards to the inner and subtle sound. Remain in this state as much as you can. Practice it regularly.
Way no 2) Chant “Aum” for about 5 minutes. Then try to listen to it within the body. The internal listening process can be done up to an hour in one sit.
Way no 3) Practice Bhramari Pranayama for about five minutes. Then remain quite. Now with just closed ears try to listen internal sound. Remain in this pose for ten minutes or longer.