You don't need to know all this to do Yoga and get the benefits of it, but if you want to dive in deep, here it goes.....
Yoga is a science, that like martial arts, teaches you how to use your body, your mind and your energies to master the immense potential you have as a human being. It teaches you to become who you are and beyond the projections you were "tamed" to express.
The word yoga comes from the root word in Sanskrit: jugit, which means “to unite”. The word union implies a relationship between two or more things; to a yogi this is the union of the consciousness and higher consciousness; the seen and unseen; the relationship between the play of the manifested Universe (Prakruti) and the seed potential of the Cosmos (Purusha).
The action, direction, plan, way and stages to get to this union and the play of this interaction, is what outlines, shapes and determines the Yogic practice.
If you look around in Nature you will clearly see that the Universe is in a constant creative process. At the same time it looks for balance and it is extremely dependable on and connected with all that is created.
This creative process can be described as a Consciousness that wants to be awaken and wants to be manifested in many forms and dimensions.
This creative potential is innate to every human being. Like the Universe, we have eager to find balance and union, we are also dependable on everything that is around us. However, due subconscious conditioning and life experiences based on survival, fear, lack of love and compassion we forget that we are the Universe and at the same time part of it.
The Ego finds himself separated from all this, bringing unhappiness, a constant search for fulfilment and a sense of not being quite right even though you may have everything.
Yogis, through empirical observations, discovered various techniques which benefit not only the health and wellbeing, but it empowered one to become their true expression. This self awareness and techniques provided the path of merging with the power of creative consciousness.
They have realised that only we merge with Higher consciousness ( AKA: enlightenment) we are are able to live in pure bliss, harmony and supreme health.
“As above, so below, as within, so without, as the universe, so the soul…”
For meditation and Yoga classes I teach a fusion of Classic Hatha Yoga with Kundalini Yoga.
What is Hatha Yoga?
Hatha simply refers to the practice of physical yoga postures. The word “hatha” can be translated two ways: as “willful” or “forceful,” or the yoga of activity, and as “sun” (ha) and “moon” (tha), the yoga of balance.
Hatha Yoga practice will then balance your energies of expansion and contraction so that you align your body and calm your mind in order to prepare for meditation.
What is Kundalini Yoga?
Kundalini is a Sanskrit word that means “one which is coiled”. This is a symbolic way to express our innate energy that is dormant at the base of your spine. This innate energy is referred as vitality and creative expression of your truth and potential as human being.
Kundalini Yoga uses dynamic asanas, breath work and meditative practices that cleanses energy channels, balances the endocrine and nervous system so that you awaken this energy and become aware of your potential.
Kundalini Yoga is like a manual for the human consciousness, and as complete Yogic Sciences works in all aspects of Human Energy: Body, Mind and Spirit. Kundalini Yoga balances the rhythm of these three energies.
When there is balance and rhythm, there is health, vitality, happiness, joy, excitement to progress in life, rigour, and most importantly, there is an enjoyment and gratitude for Life.
How Am I going to teach you? and What can you expect to benefit from it?
When you learn these techniques with me I will guide you and encourage you to explore them in the best of your abilities. I will guide and encourage you to trust yourself and listen to yourself.
The transformation the teachings will give you are connected to your own experience of using those techniques.
And that is what makes your journey so unique and so valuable, not only to yourself but for all those around you.
When you capture through your own perception and project through your own essence, you create an impact to reality that is so powerful because it can only come through you. Yoga teaches you to recognise and honour this self expression.
1 - “Tuning in”:
To start the class we tune in with a mantra or a breath awareness.
The mantra can be a simple Om (the sound current of the Universe) or Adi Mantra ("Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo", which means I call on the divine teacher within me).
We use mantra to centre ourselves beyond the duality of the mind. The mantra and the breath awareness sets the scene for the deep work you will do
2 - “Pranayam”:
It is a breathing technique.
The breath is the bridge between your conscious and subconscious mind.
Consciously you can control the amount of breaths per minute you may have, how air can come through your lungs via the breathing technique, but there is a portion of your breathing that is automatic and is not under your control, that is the subconscious part of it.
So the first importance of pranayama in yoga is to create this rhythm between the conscious part of your breath and the subconscious part of your breath. Remember rhythm creates health, vitality and happiness.
The other importance of Pranayama is more etheric and it is connected to the Pranic Energy within the air. Pranic energy is the energy that sustains the Universe.
In Yoga Sciences is said that you can, through breathing techniques, harness this energy to optimise the function of your cells, organs and mind.
Pranayama can regulate the quality of emotions and ability to direct the mind.
In Kundalini Yoga some Asanas are used to optimise the capacity to harness and distribute this Pranic Energy in the body.
3 - “Warm-up”:
We use a series of asanas (postures) or exercises aiming to prepare the body for the sequence that will follow.
4 - “Kriya” and/or Yogic Sequence:
A Kriya is a set of yoga postures, breathing techniques, mudras, mantras, with a specific aim of cleanse the energy channels. That cleanse will allow certain better function of organs, tissues and overall health of your body and mind.
Kriyas were formulated and tested by sages and yogi masters thousand of years ago, they are perfectly balanced and timed. In one Kriya one can immediately achieve a complete physical, mental and spiritual balance. It works so effectively because it is complete action, it balances and works with the Kundalini Energy itself.
5 - “Relaxation”:
We relax in Savasana (on your back). Sometimes there is a mini Gong Bath during relaxation to enhance the relaxation effects.
Relaxation is one of the most important parts of a class. It allows the glandular secretions to be circulated throughout the body, to balance the cardiac rhythm and to relax the nervous system. During the relaxation the energy that has been released during the class will be settled and distributed so that the body can be in a new state of equilibrium.
6 - “Meditation”:
Once the energy is settled and balanced and a healthy rhythm is created we practice meditation.
Meditation can be done in silence, or using a pranayama, or a hand gesture (mudra), body movements, visualisations, or even mantras. All in order to increase sensory perception, explore different dimensions of the mind so that you can understand how it works.
The end result that can come with one meditation or most probably with continuous practice is to bring your mind to a state of sharpened awareness.
Meditation does not control the mind, instead it teaches how to use your mind its full potential.
Meditation quietens disturbing thoughts that blocks this connection.
Meditation therefore promotes a sense of well being, allows the body to heal, brings peace, develops intuition, releases unconscious habits, subconscious fears and blocks.
7 - “Closing the Class”:
We tune out with a mantra or a moment of silence.