Shaktiananda Yoga for Body, Mind and Soul Yogic Teachings in the Ashtanga Tradition of Raja Yoga, Tantra Yoga, & Kundalini Yoga

Journey of Health, Knowing and Joy

Teachings

  

“Yoga brings balance and harmony through a life of self-discipline.

Yoga is a path of wholeness that purifies and strengthens the

body, mind, and soul for Self-realization.” ~Gurudevi 

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Five Requirements of Yogic Practices

1.) Gas or fuel for the body comes from the food we eat, the water we drink, the air we breathe, and a small amount from the radiation of the sun’s rays. Most of the energy for the body we get is from the air we breathe, and not as is commonly assumed from food and water.

2.) Electric current, pranic energy, is supplied from the solar plexus, which is the storage battery for the body. Lack of energy will put the whole system out of order.

3.) Cooling system for the body is provided through relaxation.

4.) Lubrication of the joints is achieved by various bodily movements. The nerve currents carry electricity in human beings.

5.) Directing Intelligence, or the mind, should be properly controlled. Prayer, devotion to the one Supreme Being, love, courage, discrimination between the real and the unreal, will train the mind as an intelligent driver. 

Formula of Yogic Exercises

 

 

    Yogic exercises are all based on the formula of stretching, relaxation, deep breathing, and increasing circulation and concentration. Modern physical exercises require more energy than Yogic exercises. Every violent movement burns up lots of energy and more lactic acids are formed in the muscle fibers by such quick movements which is more tiresome to the muscles. The slow gentle movements of the joints during Yoga practice waste no energy. Deep breathing with mild retention during the practice allows for more oxygen absorption. Less lactic acid is produced and, as this is easily neutralized by the alkali, it avoids muscle fatigue.

    When twisting and other movements of various joints occur the blood vessels are pulled and stretched and blood is equally distributed to every part of the body. The stretched muscles and ligaments during the Yogic practice are immediately relaxed, carrying more energy to the muscle fibers. Energy flows into the relaxed muscles, just as water flows through an open vessel. 

Eight Parts of Yogic Culture

There are 840,000 poses according to the Yoga Shastras of which 84 are important. Shaktiananda Yoga teaches all of the main poses with their variations. The meditative poses in the Yogic culture is divided into eight parts:

Yama, ethics

Niyama, religious observances, reflection

Asanas, postures

Pranayama, breathing exercises

Pratyahara, withdrawal of senses from objects

Dhyana, meditation

Dhyana, meditation

Samadhi, superconsciousness  

The Two Groups of Yogic Practices

Cultural Postures

The Cultural Postures are the asanas that imitate various aspects of God in the form of animals and divine states of being. Shaktiananda Yoga postures include the 12 basic asanas and more advanced variations of these and more.

Meditative Postures

Lotus pose (Padmasan)

Adept’s pose (Siddhasan)

Ankle lock pose (Swastikasan)

Easy pose (Sukasan)

Kneeling pose (Vajrasan)

Sitting upright in a chair.



The Meditative Postures are very important when practicing the breathing exercises and meditation. One should strive to sit in any one of the four top positions for one to two hours at a stretch without moving.

First of all, an erect position of the spine will keep it in its natural curve. Keep the head, neck, and trunk in one straight line. Secondly, training the body to sit for long periods without movements reduces its metabolic processes to a minimum. When the body is kept in a steady position for a long time, the mind becomes free from all physiologic disturbances caused by physical activities of the body.

A straight spine helps the students to concentrate because in the straight position there is a steady flow of nerve energy through the body which can be felt through the spine. This nerve energy (prana) can be increased for spiritually awakening through breathing exercises (pranayama) and concentration on the pranic flow in the spine which leads to the initiation and practice of the ancient technique known as Shakti Kriya.The Himalayan Master Mahavatar Babaji has given this technique through the line of Gurus. 

Seven Principles

 

1.) Goal. The teachings of Shaktiananda Yoga are for Self-discovery of the true inner nature of wholeness, the origin of eternal truth, beauty, eternal happiness, and bliss, and Self-realization. Shaktiananda Yoga practice is a way of life concentrating on the true nature, which is love itself, beyond limitation. Yoga means union with God.

The goal of all Yoga is to achieve the meditative state of Samadhi; which is an experience in which the separation between the Yogin (male) or Yogini (female) and the focus of concentration merge into one producing a state of bliss in oneness with God/dess. Yoga is not a religion. Yoga goes beyond religion and is complimentary to all religions. Yoga is the "Science of Religion". Yoga is the science of religion (to realize) Self-realization.

2.) Spiritual Study in ShaktianandaYoga is included. Shaktiananda in Sanskrit means to love Divine Mother is Bliss: Shakti; Divine Mother, Ananda; bliss. Yoga in Sanskrit;Yug; means joining or union with the Creator. 

The Shaktiananda Yoga method could be described as a way of teaching and practicing Yoga where the student is constantly reminded that their true Self is happiness, and Love itself. Through loving the Divine Mother oneness with the Divine Father unfolds as a complete oneness in the Goddess and God; yin and yang; female principle and male principle of the Divine Creator of all manifestation. The inner space is in complete oneness and harmony with the geometric pattern of Divinity.

Shaktiananda Yoga includes teachings of the Brotherhood of the White Light, including the Himalayan Masters in ancient Sanskrit Mantras, texts as the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and the Bhagavad Gita, Ascended and Unascended Masters, Elohim, Archangels and Elementals.

3.) Devotional Practice of Shaktiananda Yoga is the opportunity to offer our gratitude and love to the Divine Source of our existence. When we combine Bhakti (devotional) Yoga with daily Asana practice, our experience becomes more meaningful and satisfying. The postures assumed in practice are expressions of the infinite possibilities imagined by God. Some Asanas mimic the shape of animals, while others honor Great Beings of Light. Practicing the Asanas produces the energy and spirit of those beings. The body becomes connected to the earth, providing stability and foundation to lift the spirit upward. The flow of energy in Asanas establishes the energy between the temporal and the spiritual. 

4.) Instruction of the Shaktiananda Yoga technique is learned by students through each and every movement. Shaktiananda Yoga technique is more therapeutic than a full body massage, releasing the stored and blocked energy of both body and mind. Asanas are meditative postures and cultural postures for body control to connect with the inner space; ‘I Am That I Am’ (as above, so below). Through Yoga practice the student establishes a grounded relationship to the earth. Shaktiananda Yoga classes are for all ages and levels including meditation instruction and Sanskrit Mantras chanted in the traditional way.

Meditation instruction is included. The student develops control to sit in a comfortable position for an extended period of time, holding still, and concentrating the mind. When concentration is mastered a meditative state in the inner space will naturally unfold. The goal of meditation is to unite with God/dess. Experiences of Samadhi and Enlightenment unfold as the student progresses. 

5.) Energy (Light of God) vibrates which is called nada or nadam, cosmic music. Vibration (Sound of God) produces sound waves. Plato called it the "Music of the Spheres". OM is the original sound from the Absolute consciousness; the I Am That I Am; that all language, sound, and music come from. OM is the home and the seed consciousness of all existence. OM (AUM in Sanskrit) is a mixture of: 

"A" - manifestation, "U" - growth, "M" – perfection and completion. The Mantra OM is chanted at the beginning and end of each Shaktiananda Yoga Class. The aim of Hatha Yoga practice, according to the ancient scriptures, is to hear the sound of OM internally. Your Guru will help you experience the sound of OM.

6.) Hatha Yoga. Ha: Sun; Tha: moon; Yug: joining; Hath: tied to a post attained through physical practice toward a spiritual goal. All physical Shaktiananda Yoga practices include Hatha Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, Tantra Yoga, and Kriya Yoga. 

7.) Guru means teacher, the dispeller of darkness. The male teacher is called Gurudeva, and the female teacher is called Gurudevi. The Guru helps you discover who you really are. The Guru can hold the balance for your soul and your personal karma on inner levels as you progress on the path. G U R U - Gee You Are You. The Guru is a mirror reflecting your true Self; your  soul’s inner blueprint of individuality of your causal body; your own I am Presence. The goal of Self-realization is to awaken to your inner higher Self; your own Christ Self and I Am Presence; your inner Guru.

G O D is the Geometry Of Divinity.