Sadhana – Spiritual Practices of Yoga

IMG_7158When you read Iyengar’s “Light on Yoga” – a beautiful adaptation of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika for modern-day yoga practitioners, you’ll often see the word “sadhaka.”  This word implies the person doing the practice of Sadhana – the spiritual disciplines of Yoga.  In our world today, yoga has become a very fashionable series of exercises – and we love this on one level – on another level – we understand that all Yoga exercises are meant to deepen the practice or Sadhana of the student so that he or she can attain Samadhi – never-ending peace and bliss consciousness.

I have been teaching yoga now for almost twenty years and the practice never stops deepening my Sadhana.  This sadhana is not even a discipline I impose on myself.  I do not set my alarm for 3:30 in the morning to practice at 4 am – the ambrosial hours as my friend William Arthur Mills calls it – the time we call Brahma Muhurta in Sanskrit – the time of God.  But when I am roused out of my sleep – I know it is time for this deep communing, this meditation, this setting my whole life and practices to the metronome of heaven.

Why would we even want the deeper practices of Yoga?

Well, it makes everything easier.  And as Amma Karunamayi Ma reminded me the other day, what happens is that if you need 1000 arms to get anything done, then 1000 arms will be given to you.  I para-phrase, but literally, with deeper practices of yoga, the impossible becomes possible.  The insurmountable difficulty you thought would never be resolved becomes simple.  Problems dissolve.  And here’s the beauty of Yoga, we don’t just want you to believe this.  Yoga is a science.  Apply the techniques to your life and see what happens.  For me, I often feel like there is an invisible hand guiding me always, and that I can just relax as “doing” happens through me.  All doing.  I participate, I am present – but I am guided by something very kind, generous and always loving.  When I am not in my sadhana, the mind gets in the way.  It thinks too much.  Worries too much.  Analyzes too much.  We call this “analysis-paralysis.”

With sadhana, discernment sets in.  There is an ability to intrinsically see what should and shouldn’t take up one’s time and energy.  It’s quite beautiful.  Try it.  Join me for classes at Yoga Illumined.  Let’s practice so that you can form your own Sadhana, your own internal discipline that comes from sweetness and joy.

Om shantih om,

Sumukhi

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