yoga teacher trainingBy Faye Martins

The regular practice of Yoga can be a source of great happiness. Yoga not only helps to keep your body limber and strong, it also supports you in maintaining a good internal emotional state. The devotional practices of Yoga also help to keep you connected to the Divinity residing in your own heart.

Depression, one of the opposites of happiness, stems from stagnant physical and emotional energy. A regular practice of Yoga postures and breathing exercises will help to identify, dislodge, and release pent-up energy. A vigorous practice of Yoga postures, while coordinating the postures with deep, rhythmic Ujjayi breathing, will increase your prana or life-force energy, release stress, and emotional energy in both the body and mind. This deep release of tension on all levels of your being is one of the main reasons a regular Yoga practice can contribute to a sense of well-being and happiness.

Many people are familiar with the practice of Hatha Yoga or the physical postures of Yoga. There are also several other branches of Yoga that complement the physical postures. One of these practices is the chanting of divine texts and mantras. When you are chanting a mantra or a spiritual text, your mind is focused on the task at hand. This focus will help your mind to feel more calm and will also quell free-floating anxiety. The syllables of the mantras themselves are known as Bija mantras or seed mantras, and they correlate directly to the seven chakras. As we chant, the vibration of the sacred syllables activates, energizes, and purifies each chakra. This is why our spirits and souls soar during a beautiful session of devotional chanting.

Meditation is another branch of Yoga that can swiftly alter our moods, calm our nerves, and allow our whole being to rest in conscious awareness. Okay, on a good day! In fact, the regular practice of meditation has been shown to ease depressive symptoms, lower anxiety and stress levels, and in turn, lower blood pressure. So, even if you are having a challenging session of meditation, the regularity of your practice is the key. Over time, your mind will settle down and you will be more easily able to just “be” in the clear light of bliss, and in the “field of divine consciousness.”

The regular practice of Yoga helps us to slow down, release tension and stress within our inner selves, and more readily be able to be in touch with the divine energy within each one of us. Asanas help to maintain flexibility and strengthen the body. Chanting helps to focus our minds, witness our habitual thoughts, and energize our whole being. Meditation creates time and space for us to settle, while we rest in the clear light of bliss. All of these practices, when engaged in on a regular basis, will definitely contribute to a greater sense of happiness and well-being.

© Copyright 2011 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

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