Awakening Vibrant Wellness: Yoga Supports Structure and Depth
Sep 04, 2015 03:02AM
By Basil Jones
Alignment and longevity go hand in hand, according to yogic teachings. Though the teachings of yoga are ancient in their origins, the desire and structure for their depth and support is quite evident in American society now.
One of the first things teachers point out when you practice yoga is that structure in bodily posture is only stable when there is correct alignment. Initially, alignment is seen as the stacking of the bones, which supports the ease and comfort of the joints. However, over time you see that physical bodily alignment is just the beginning of the exploration.
Once satisfied with the physical alignment in the outer body, investigating the alignment of the breath and the energy that moves through the breath into the landscape of the body is next. Practicing slow and controlled breathing on both the inhale and exhale allows you to integrate higher amounts of energy into your physical body. Without this regulation of breath, you may feel misaligned and out of connection with the broader landscape the posture invites you to explore.
As the body and the breath move into alignment, emotions and sensations are revealed in the mind. For yoga practitioners, this is where the body becomes aligned with the mind; taking the attitude of being a gentle witness to what arises in the mind without chasing after the narrative or inner dialogue supports the alignment of feeling, breathing and “being”. Sacred ancient texts on yoga advise that this relationship should be steady and reveal a joyful nature. If there is a misalignment in the body, breath or mind, you are likely to not experience such gifts of ease and joyfulness. This is where the real work lies in building a rewarding and sustainably therapeutic yoga practice.
As these three aspects of your inner being become more aligned, an awakened wisdom or higher awareness of self is revealed. Where do you overly grasp within these three realms? Where do you resist and deny participating with shift and change that is asking to be revealed? How can you steer your efforts towards realizing alignment of the body, breath, mind, and support meaningful personal growth?
By coming back again and again, you tend to the misalignments, refining your practice and awakening to the true sense of vibrant wellness. As you spend more time in this newly found relationship with your aligned being, you start to perceive insights into the longevity of your expansive and evolving self. Your path might shift. Your inner attitude about longevity may cast a wider net. For many, this supports a deeper connection to inner spirit and joyful connection.
The epic and sacred story from India on awakening to the longevity of true self, The Bhagavad Gita, notes that in recognizing this joyful spirit of true self, you recognize that potential in one another. This expansive journey through alignment not only supports your own being but, in turn, moves through your relationships with others while positively contributing to a more positive outlook on life.
Ask any who practice yoga why they do it; you are bound to get just as many varied answers as there are postures. The techniques and styles may vary from person to person but one truth is for certain: alignment and longevity go hand in hand for the modern practitioner looking to live this life richly, authentically and sustainably.
Basil Jones is the owner of the Basil Yoga Center in Ridgefield. He can be reached at 203-403-2280 or BasilYoga.com.