The 8 Limbed Path
I honor the place in you
the entire universe resides,
I honor the place in you
I honor the place within you
if you are in that place in you,
And I am in that place in me,
There is only one of us.
Divine Light from Within~Tapping the Source
Within each of us is the same potential for happiness, well-being and joy as well as sadness, exasperation, and depression. Yes, we do have a unique mind body dynamic and each of us has experienced a unique lifespan, however, we do possess a deeper radiance that we can learn to tap into, regardless of our outside circumstances or what we have “gone through” in our lives. We all have a story, and for many this story has become “who we are” rather than, our story. A loving yet disciplined approach can release that story doctrine and free you to be who you really are~a radiant being of light.
Yoga, meaning, “to yoke, to draw together, as in to weave” is a lifestyle practice that you can take into yourself, interpret as you will,
practice as you will,
live as you will
and change and grow,
as you will. There is no dogma nor doctrine although there are precepts that help to guide us, just as a light post will light the way, these precepts allow you to develop your own way.
Shared common values of
- Kindness and Tolerance
- Honesty and
empower us to develop a calm, steady and strong foundation. From this platform, we can experience greater joy, deeper peace, a resoluteness when challenges come and most of all, feel gratitude for all situations, seeing them as opportunities rather than hardships.
Patanjali was a 2nd century sage, known for compiling the Yoga Sutras. Essentially organizing the ancient yogic teachings and codifying many of the ideas that were only understood by the Brahmin classes. Today, we practice these teachings and may use them as a basis for a yogic lifestyle. The Ashtanga or 8 limbed path provides a positive framework for living:
- Asana: these are the physical poses you may learn in class and can practice at home, each asana is designed to create a physical and energetic integration/release for the body/mind complex. The breath is incorporated as an integral part of these movements.
- Pranayama: this refers to the specific breathing techniques (see Breathe) that open and awaken the dormant energy within the body/mind complex
- Yamas: conscious restraints we utilize to live within society with grace:Ahimsa, bringing no harm, Satya, truthfulness, Astaya, not holding or possessing what is not ours and giving credit where due, Aparigraha, non hoarding or giving freely, and Bramacharya, containing our potency with grace and self awareness.
- Niyamas: conscious restraints we utilize for our personal Self: Sauca, cleanliness of body/mind, Santosa, contentment or acceptance without resistance, Tapas, self discipline, Svadhyaya, Self (self) study, observation and witnessing our thoughts, words and deeds, and Isvarapranidhana, devotion to that which is greater than us or cultivating our gratitude.
- Pratyahara: the effort and practice of drawing our attention inward, away from the exterior demand of the 5 senses
- Dhrana: from the place of Pratyahara, once the senses are quiet, focusing that attention to a single point like a laser beam without distraction
- Dhyanana: Meditation (concentration) moves from the object to the becoming of one with it, the separation disappears and the union exists
- Samadhi: the end state of Meditation, Bliss, Ananda, where we Realize who we are, even if only for a moment.
“Self-control at first produces unhappiness because of the separation from the pleasure-yeilding senses. After self-control ripens, however, the soul begins to experience finer, happier perceptions and to enjoy itself far more than when it lived identified with the sense-pleasures. The devotee, suffering from fear of the feeling of emptiness, must realize that renunciation is not an end in itself. Rather, it is a means to an end, and teaches one to shift the attention from lesser sense-pleasures to deeper soul pleasures.” from : “How to be Happy all the Time”, by Paramhansa Yogananda
• Increase physical vitality and emotional stability
• Decrease stress, anxiety, depression and insomnia
• Alleviate PMS, pre and post menapausal symptoms
• Balance your glandular system and increase metabolilc activity for weight loss and control
• Quiet your mind and connect to yourself on a deeper level
“The value that yoga brings to body, mind & spirit is becoming increasingly obvious to a critical mass of people in North America and around the world”.
~Deepak Chopra, MD, The Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga