YOGA - It's not about how flexible you are. It's about mental and physical harmony and healing.
Yoga, Simply Put:
If you can breathe you can do yoga. Yoga is about discovery and exploration of the deeper self – not about how flexible you are or whether you can perform asana postures. In my practice, the focus of yoga is on its use as a therapy more so than as a form of ‘exercise’ – albeit it is a most wonderful form of exercise. Each practice session is structured and tailored for each individual client so any and all issues/limitations are easily addressed and all of my clients are able to participate fully with the program presented. Those who are able and interested in performing asana practice do; those who are not have a program designed that incorporates a multitude of yogic techniques that do not include asana practice.
In the clinical setting I use the practice of yoga as more of a therapeutic tool to explore deeper levels of consciousness, to release physical, mental, emotional tensions, and to create a safe place for discovery of the spiritual nature of self; all of these aspects very pertinent to the process of healing of the body/mind. Illness or imbalance in the body can only be created if there is some degree of disconnect from any or all aspects of Self on some level; once that is understood then that leads us to the next logical step which is to come upon the understanding that for any level of complete and effective healing to occur increased awareness/consciousness needs to be cultivated.
The Science & History of Yoga
The practice of yoga has existed for at least 3,000 years that we are aware of based on historical records and data; some records indicate yoga may have been in existence dating as far back as 9,000 years ago, although science has not been able to prove this for sure. I suspect the practice has been in existence much longer than 3,000 years based on what has been revealed to us through various scrolls, cave paintings, scriptures, hieroglyphics, and archaeological findings. Regardless of the exact time yoga came into existence, the fact remains that this practice has withheld the test of time for a reason.
Yoga is the science of right living; its practices, philosophy, and techniques work on ALL aspects of the person – the physical, vital, mental, emotional, psychic, and spiritual. “Yoga” means “unity” or “oneness”- it refers to the union of the individual consciousness with the universal consciousness. Yoga has nothing to do with any religion or belief system of any kind but has everything to do with cultivating one’s own personal individual awareness. On a more practical level, yoga is a means of balancing and harmonizing the body, mind and emotions. This is done through the practice of asana (specific body positions), pranayama (breath control), mudra (gestures or attitudes), bandha (muscular holds or locks), shatkarma (purification, cleansing practices), and meditation (relaxed state characterized by alpha/theta brain waves wherein one is completely united with your inner being or Self).
From Unbalance to Balance…
During the last 100 years or so, society’s way of life has changed greatly throughout the world which has resulted in the mind of man losing the point of balance and harmony in every sphere of existence. We are so engrossed in material survival that we are not aware of what has been happening to us. Medical science has put an end to great plagues of the past but we are now faced with a new epidemic of stress related disorders caused by our inability to adapt to the highly competitive pace of modern life. The global problem today is not hunger, poverty, drugs, fear, or war. It is tension, hypertension, and total tension. If you know how to free yourself from tension, you know how to be free in this world. If you are able to balance your tensions you can control your emotions, anger, and passions.
Physical and mental therapy is one of yoga’s most important offerings. What makes it so powerful and effective is the fact that it works on the holistic principles of harmony and unification. The yogic texts all unequivocally state that peace can only be found within – never without. Therefore, if we wish to create a more peaceful world we must first learn how to relax and harmonize our own body and mind. This is why I use the practice of yoga in my consulting practice with all of my clients and consider it an integral part of the healing process regardless of one’s complaint, disease, skill level, physical capacity, or ailment.
Why We’re Involving You in Yoga
Please rest assured…if you can breathe you can do yoga. Asana (postures) are only one aspect of yoga and for those who have very limited mobility or athleticism do not think you are limited in your ability to participate in the practice. It just means that your practice takes on a different look from another’s but is in no way any less effective or less powerful in its ability to open or transform one’s Self mentally or physically.
There is a very specific function, purpose, intention, and benefit for involving you in the practice of yoga for it supports and plays a vital and integral role with all of the other work (hormone balancing, supplement protocols, etc. ) we are doing to restore vitality, balance, and health back to you – the initial purpose for our involvement together. This practice has never failed me or anyone else I have shared it with – it has only supported and enriched the experience of life and the experience of being human for all those who have chosen to explore it. I welcome you to it and am grateful to have the opportunity to share it with you.