Why do we do asanas in yoga? Is it to become more flexible -- both physically and mentally? Maybe we practice because it feels good to slow down and be completely in our bodies. Is it to reduce stress in our lives or to respond better when things are difficult? Or to increase the flow of life energy throughout our body.
Here are four pure reasons why we practice asanas and how they relate to the overall yoga practice.
There are many reasons to practice asanas in yoga, but for most people, it's for physical reasons. Such as a bad back, chronic headaches, or the need to lose weight. If you practice deeply, you will find that it feels much better than traditional exercise. Ultimately, we do yoga to calm the mind and feel more balanced - physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Why do we keep returning to the yoga mat? It may take time and a lot of self-investigation to understand what our deepest intentions are in yoga practice. However, as the practice matures, yoga begins to permeate every aspect of our lives.
According to yoga philosophy, we have a purpose to achieve, a Dharma. Our body yoga practice makes us wonder what that is -- especially if the body practice is combined with meditation and yoga philosophy.
Asana practice can cleanse our body of energy. This is an important point. That's why we often feel better at the end of a yoga class when we're lying in a corpse pose than we did before we started. As we flow into and out of postures, we are getting rid of energy blocks. We are clearing the energy channels in our bodies so that energy can flow more freely.
Our energy often doesn't flow in the most efficient way before we practice a series of yoga poses. By the end of the exercise, the flow had improved. This purification of energy flow is really the main reason why we practice asanas.
Yoga means "union." It is a system of tools for experiencing the union within ourselves and between us and the divine. Another way to understand why we practice asanas is to understand their order. According to the Light of Hatha Yoga, this union is the ultimate goal of Hatha yoga.
To achieve this goal, we must first practice asanas. Next, we add cessation (kumbhaka is the temporary termination of the rest, awareness, and true self). Then practice the handprint.
In conclusion, our ultimate goal in practicing yoga asanas is to reach an evolutionary point where we can hear and feel this vibration of oneness -- this eternal buzz. In this way, yoga is the most spiritual and profound exercise we can do for our body, mind and spirit.
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