become a hatha yoga instructorBy Sangeetha Saran

Some people ask, “How can I find happiness?” You hear all kinds of advice about happiness and most of it is useful, but happiness is also a choice. The practice of Yoga cultivates prana and happiness. Yet, many people remain unhappy because of a run of bad luck or because they choose to be miserable. When traveling around the world, you can see the face of deep poverty, but there are poor people who are very happy. At the same time, there are the super-rich of the world and some of them are extremely unhappy. We know that material wealth is not the gateway to happiness, but neither is poverty.

The Yogic Mindset for Happiness

People try many things from good nutrition to prescription medication in an attempt to be happy. With depression, anxiety and panic at an all-time high in the world, people will do anything to find the relief they long for. Let’s face it, life is hectic but there is a way to enjoy life without being stressed out every day, even being happy. The best way to combat the blues is to raise serotonin levels in the body naturally through yoga.

Below the Surface

Most people think of yoga as a source of meditation, a way to allow the body to become flexible and method to create a hot body. What many do not realize is that yoga training has also been practiced for centuries as a way to combat depression and keep the mind healthy. Much of yoga is about learning the proper breathing techniques (pranyama) for happiness and a quality life. Through pranayama practice the body can exhale all stresses and create a happier practitioner. Many experts explain that breathing techniques are a good way to overcome panic and anxiety and pranayama teaches practitioners the proper way to breathe as the body stretches.

Yogic Principles

The principles of yoga training are to allow the body to relax and the mind to to become centered. The perception of yoga is “self-discipline” and, in fact, that is what yogic techniques are teaching a person, which is how to discipline one’s self. If a person perceives himself or herself as sad and depressed, then that is what they will be. On the other hand, if a person sees himself or herself as happy and fulfilled, then that is what they will be. The whole mind over matter issue definitely comes into play with yoga.

Roots of Yogic Methods

Yoga can be traced back historically to artifacts in India that originated around 3000 B.C, though it is said to have been around long before that time. It has been used greatly by diversified cultures and religions as a way to promote inner healing and peace. Yoga can accomplish many things, but by practicing a regular regimen, a person should be able to create the state of proper relaxation and ultimately inner states of happiness.

Laughter and Happiness

Yoga will definitely stimulate and provide relaxation. There are certain branches of yoga that play around with laughter. Some practitioners may not be able to handle a class devoted to laughing, but it promotes happiness rather than sadness and grief. These classes focus on getting rid of all the negative energy that can hold a person down and instead the focus is shifted on the positive aspects of life. “Laughter is good medicine” and combining that with yoga training is a powerful force that can help promote a more rounded, well adjusted, and happier person.


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