There are 5 commandments that you need to keep in mind for practicing yoga at home. The commandments are easy. The hard part is understanding why you would want to get started.
Recently I was explaining to a friend that when I was in my 20’s and new to yoga, philosophy, and Eastern thought, I kept encountering teachings about the nature of suffering. The teachings kept saying: To be alive, to be human, is, by its very nature, to suffer.
Everyone on the planet is suffering? To be alive is to experience suffering?
I did not understand this. And it wasn’t because I hadn’t experienced loss, separation, and heartache, but being alive is to suffer? I wanted to understand more.
The teachings went on to say: through the practice of yoga, meditation, and embracing a conscious lifestyle, one can transcend suffering and discover a path toward liberation. That was clear, but what is everyone suffering about? Or suffering from?
And isn’t that the question we all need to ask ourselves? Are we happy with the way our life has unfolded? And if we are not happy with the current state, are we suffering?
Suffering is a verb.
What the masters of the past were referring to is that suffering is due to separation from ones True Self. One’s reason for Being. Suffering is because our life doesn’t have a satisfying amount of meaning to it.
Does this mean, get satisfied and remove suffering? I think the answer to that question is Yes.
The essence of yoga and its related practices is personal growth, leading to increased happiness, lightness, openness, and love in your life. They offer the potential for us to become our best selves, manifesting our dreams and desires. By approaching the practice with dedication, humility and focus you can bring these qualities into your being, embody your ultimate self, and the rewards multiply tenfold.
Those seem like good enough reasons to start practicing. or, to practice more deeply, if that is the case for you. Here are 5 essential steps or Commandments that you can command upon yourself to support you on your journey.
1. Be practical: Keep your space to practice in simple and keep your goals realistic. Being practifcal is undervalued. The practical actions are what keeps the world afloat. There is no sinking when we behave reasonably and we keep it simple.simplicity and reasonability make things easier.
And in case no one ever told you, being practical is deeply spiritual.
2. Be rooted: Prioritize your body’s well-being during every practice session. Regularly check in with yourself to assess how you feel physically and emotionally. Avoid pushing beyond your limits, as this can lead to injuries or strain. By staying connected to your body and respecting its boundaries, you cultivate a grounded and safe yoga practice.
3. Be meaningful: Dive deep into your practice, developing heightened awareness and exploring your innermost dreams and aspirations. Seek to create tangible and actionable value in your life through yoga. Embrace the transformative potential of your practice, trusting that it can guide you towards personal growth and fulfillment.
4. Be perennial: Keep going through all the seasons. You will have a better time of it all when you do. And by seasons I do me the 3-7 seasons a year that take place in the natural world. Where I live in Northern California, we have 3 seasons in a year. In India, there are 6-7 seasons, depending upon geographical location.
Embrace the changing seasons and adapt your practice accordingly. Different times of the year bring unique energy and circumstances. Recognize that your body responds differently to the atmosphere, food, and life events during each season. By observing and adjusting to these changes, you can enhance your practice’s effectiveness. Yoga can help combat seasonal affective disorder during dreary weather or provide relaxation during the energetic summer months.
5. Be calibrated: Figure out what you need to connect with yourself through practice and stay consistent. This may involve experimenting with various techniques, styles, or intensities. Once you find what resonates with you, strive for consistency. Regular and focused practice will yield greater benefits and enable you to maintain a harmonious alignment with yourself.
Embrace these Commandments as tools to cultivate a deeper connection with yourself, expand your consciousness, and experience the power of these ancient disciplines.
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