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304 North Cardinal St.
Dorchester Center, MA 02124
Monday to Friday: 7AM - 7PM
Weekend: 10AM - 5PM
These are the basic practices related to the energetic centres (chakras). These techniques prepare you for the awakening of Kundalini energy which rises from the lowest energetic centre (Mooladhara chakra) towards the highest (Sahasrara chakra). *
Towards this process there is a need for good preparation and regular everyday practice. This material is for students who are already practising yoga to attain advance levels of yoga discipline, by learning asanas (yogic postures), pranayama (yogic breathing), entering meditative states and application of mudras towards attainment of higher states of consciousness, tranquillity, harmony and inner peace which are in effect.
Welcome to material about yoga and I wish you determination in practice.
When you do the basic position adjust it either on the ground or on the chair that you can feel your spine in a straight position, stimulate the flow of prana through the breathing practice and work on concentrating the flow of breath moving in the central channel (shushumna nadi) along the spine. This awareness will strengthen the flow of energy and as well the physical level in the spine.
When you are sitting on the ground keep your heels close to each other and close to the root. Keeping the spine upright, expand the position on an energetic level with an inhalation up and keep it risen as far as possible. Upon exhalation keep the position and the raised spine up, just observe the flow of the breath moving down along the spine (in Shushumna nadi) to the root. With every breath keep on working with the expansion of the spine upwardly on an energetic level, the physical level will adjust into these changes. Keep on visualizing the spine as a rope, line or ray of light along the spine, which is rising upwardly to the top of the head and even a few inches above.
Remember, to attain yogic state it is necessary to engage the pranic force in the process (pranayama kosha) not only in the physical dimension (annamaya kosha). If you will limit your practice only to the physical exercise, there won’t be such a result as prescribed. So, involve your complete awareness within every breath to its full capacity for a present moment.
This technique of being completely aware in the present moment is an ancient technique of shaman’s who would enter different states of consciousness (this practice as a tool for enlightenment has been well described in an ancient India Tantric text called “Bhairava Tantra”). To enter this state of consciousness one must reach the limit of their capacity in the present moment on inhalation and exhalation. Reaching the end of each, not on a mental or physical level, the experience comes when one is deeply emerged in the present moment, being absorbed within the flow of breath and one must keep on going with it and going until it has no more possibility to expand. (if you think that it is your limit then keep on going, because there is much more than you think). The same on exhalation, one needs to empty completely, so that there won’t be at all even a sip of the breath/air. When those two points are reached the practitioner will recognize that, because after reaching the limit, the opposite flow of the breath will be rushing in or out, then one needs to be able to control it to its slowest speed, however with a sense of flow. There should be no stopping at any point and no break in between. When this circulation flow of the breath on inhalation and exhalation starts, one can enter in to the state of pure awareness just by observing the flow of the breath happening by itself. That is a yogic achievement of being able to move one’s own level of consciousness from the physical body (annamaya kosha) to the pranic body (pranayama kosha). Once entering to that state, the practitioner can work through energy of prana within the body healing and transforming it from inside.
Realize that our physical body comes from nature like animals, and we do have an instinct within the body. Imagine that your spine is like a snake. When you are sitting on the root, for your spine to straighten you need to arise from the bottom, like a cobra on its tail, upwardly. All your awareness needs, is to be within the spine along with the flow of the breath. In this way you will be able to activate the sleeping(dormant) energy in it. At first focus on the root, then keep on moving your awareness upwardly along the spine. When you reach the abdomen and hips level, curve it gently into the front, like a snake (cobra) does when it wants to stand up. With the raised and gently forward curved spine keep on rising your breath with awareness into the higher levels, on the solar plexus level pull it in and up and rise more above to the level of your throat. Here is an important point where the practitioner needs to gently tuck in the chin towards the chest, however not too high and not too low. You will feel the correct position in how prolongated the back of the neck is interlinked with the lower spine, and then easily you will be able to move your awareness onwards to the higher points of concentration. The next level is the one in the middle of the head (which is the pineal gland related to the ajna chakra) and then finally you reach the highest point on the top of the head the “sahasrara chakra”.
Imagine a string/rope along your spine, it is locked into the root and into the top of your head and along the length of it, there is your spine. As this awareness develops you would enter shushumna nadi. Being mindful of it your awareness of chakras/kamals will arise as well. Chakras are located along the shushumna channel (on the physical level you can say along the spine, however they are not physical as a gross body).
If you can sit in padmasana position (lotus position) then the lower spine curve will occur naturally.
In these practices we withdraw our awareness from the external into an internal perception. We are absorbing the senses within. Do not open your eyes (it will take your concentration/ internal focus away from your centre). Yoga is completely absorbed within. During the practices we stay completely focused on the flow of the breath perfecting our position internally through stimulation of prana. Within more advance stages the physical body stays in a position without any movement, like a statue (“murti”) and a yogi observes the process going on internally, from time to time some part of the body can spontaneously release and open. It happens as an effect of pranic flow which increases its capacity releasing any blockages from the physical and subtle bodies.
What is required? Your complete awareness on the breath flow to its highest capacity in the present moment. A Yogi is aware of its breath in every moment, through the expansion of the breath the subtle levels opens, and consciousness expands beyond the physical realm.
If you are not used to sitting in position for long periods, from time to time stretch your legs out front & tap them off the ground. When you are ready come back to the cross legged sitting pose, keep your eyes closed and stay focused on the breath, while observing breath and bodily sensations. Move very slowly.
If you are not able to sit with a straight spine on the ground easily then use a pillow to put underneath your bottom or sit at the start of the practice on a chair, with a time you can get rid of the supporting elements and sit directly on the ground, which is crucial to gain strength in the spinal cord.
Inbreath is an arising energy which opens the body and energy flow. Outbreath is a releasing energy which releases tension and blockages. However, during the practice and as far as possible in your daily life motion keep the spine straight. After developing yogic awareness during the yoga sadhana you will be able to observe the energetic changes, signals, impressions and breath flow within your body in daily life. This requires consistent practice and determination.
*Information about Chakras will be described in further material on the website, work that is in progress 😉
Yogi can control the prana flow. The first practice is to learn about prana and Apana. Apana is a downward flow of breath and prana an upward one. To learn the first stages of these breathing techniques we will separate the abdomen breathing from the chest breathing. During the technique put one of your hands on the navel and another on the heart. In the beginning keep on observing the navel point which is moving out when you take an inbreath and is going inside towards the spine when your breath out. Learn to breathe long and deep only on the abdominal level and afterwards interconnect the flow of the breath on the chest level. Expand the chest lungs with every breath in and get them empty on the breath out. Apply the principles of the basic yogic position (sitting) or relax lying down on the back position (“shavasana”) to learn breathing techniques, afterwards keep on moving applying them in the various asanas (“yogic postures”)
During the basic breathing technique, we fill the belly completely with breath, releasing and relaxing it to absorb as much as possible the prana inside, then we open and expand the chest, gently opening the shoulders and moving the shoulders back letting the flow of breath move up. Before you let all the breath move from the root to the top of the head, learn from the base the abdominal breath, then the chest and afterwards keep it on moving towards the throat and up and up, even above the top of the head.
When this basic breathing technique is obtained the we can bring palms into the prayer position “pranam mudra”. Both hands together on the heart. In this position we observe the flow of the breath, applying all principles known up to this moment.
As we already know how to sit and breathe we can open the yogic practice of “yoga sadhana” with chanting “Pranava mantra” OM (“Aum”). The breath is taken deeply, and we start the circles chanting “AUM”. When “A” is located in the lower abdominal area, it is a deep sound & vibration done with an open mouth, and then it moves upward towards the point of the “ajna chakra”, it stimulates this centre with a sensible impression between the eye brows. In this moment as well roll your tongue as high as possible, sucking in towards the upper palate, like you would like to swallow the tongue. Then rising the vibration higher direct it to the top of the head, then its effect would stimulate vibrations in the whole body generating pulsating motions (like a humming bee) on the top of the head. When this effect occurs that is the sign that technique has been done correctly. In the last stage of chanting “Pranava mantra” we roll our eye balls upwardly like we would like to look up through the head with our eyes closed. When we apply this technique correctly with the flow of prana, there will be a sense of gentle blinking of the eyes upwardly (which are closed). In some moments during this practice this effect is visible on the video recording. Done this way, “Pranava mantra AUM” is a rising energy flow upwards to the “sahasrara chakra”. After a round of breath in and chanting this mantra keep it on continuously about 12 times (it depends on your way of practice, however do it for some time to be able, to experience its full effect) and when you complete this technique, sit for some time tranquilly, observing its effect along with long deep breaths.
An important role in yogic practice is the breathing process. We focus on the basic alternative breathing which purifies subtle channels “nadis”. It has been said that there are about 72,000 nadis in the human body system. From those there 3 important ones, which are Shushumna, the central channel; Ida and Pingala which are located on the sides of the central channel, respectively left and right nostril. The aim in this purification practice is to open the flow in both nostrils, when this happens, the central channel “Shushumna” activates its flow. In this middle channel the energetic centres (chakras) are located and Kundalini energy arises. During this process there is a cleansing of karmic storage which when occurs intensifies emotions and thoughts which will burn out in the process of yogic sadhana and one can free oneself from samsara and bounding experiences.
In the easy pose, sitting with a straight back, holding a gyan mudra in the left hand on the knee, keep the hand with a straight blocked elbow – 90 degrees. Place the index and middle finger of the right hand on the forehead on the point between the eyebrows. Keep on breathing through one nostril (left) and closing it with a finger, breathe out through the opposite (right), afterwards breathe in from the right nostril and breathe out through the opposite. In this way keep on breathing alternatively. Keep this technique of breathing alternatively for about 5-7min or longer. Apply all procedures and principles of breathing required from the basic breathing technique along.
It opens the flow in Ida and Pingala, balancing the feminine and masculine energy and at the same time opening the stream of energy flow in Shushumna channel. If possible keep doing this practice on a regular daily basis. It prepares one to advance the yogic stages and meditation practice.
A powerful cleansing technique which activates lots of fire energy that purifies the channels and body system. It is applied in certain asanas for a deep cleansing effect. Whenever there is a blockage in the body which manifests as sickness. Those blockages are stored in the physical body and subtle channels nadis and energetic centres (chakras). When flow prana transforms the blockage, it can be experienced sometimes as painful on the physical, emotional, mental level or on the other hand it can be a release and the sense of relief. After these experiences can come tiredness or a quick increase of a lot of uplifting energy. These processes after some time are balanced in the system and one is free from the blockage. These transformation processes are beneficial on physical/emotional/mental level for health. They unlock the potential energy and increase energy which, when is on a higher level gives access to the transcendental, higher consciousness states, connection to intuition and paranormal abilities and mystical states for spiritual growth.
The aim in this practice is to obtain a high standard applying this technique that there is no effort in doing it. Focus on the out breath through the nostrils and pull the navel in. Those are the two points of concentration in the beginning, especially when you will experience challenges in doing this technique, focus on one of these points and keep on releasing any tension through the out breath. When the technique is done properly then you will experience that the body is a tool through which prana is flowing.
The easiest way to learn this technique is to imitate the breath of a dog, which after a run sticks its tongue out and breathes quickly. You can at first do it with your tongue out and afterwards when you recognize the pattern of breathing to apply it correctly into the kapalabhati breathing technique and do it only through the nose. The control over the navel is the basis of this technique. When you will focus on the outbreath only then the breath in will come itself naturally. The navel “nabhi” is the nervous plexus where the nerves (“nadis”- subtle channels of energy) are mixing (have a meeting point). The easiest and most effective speed of this breathing technique is to do 2 strokes, pulls of the breath for 1 sec.
This technique can increase lots of Fire energy in the body, that’s a good effect of the practice. This technique works deeply with the Manipuri chakra; however, it strengthens all your system and when is well done you can apply it into various kinds of asanas that the purification process will be more effective.
BE AWARE! Do not practice this technique when you have heart problems, high blood pressure and during menstruation process. Also, it is suggested to learn the technique under the guidance of an experienced teacher.
There is an important notice that the practitioner can reach such a state of consciousness that they will experience the practice through the subtle bodies synchronized with the physical body. In this way transformation, at first, will take place from the energetic levels and the subtle is to be manifested in the physical level. To have that level of experience during the practice, give your complete awareness to the breath as it is the key to connect gross and subtle levels.
It is the base root lock. It is a foundation of arousal of energy, which moves up from the mooladhara chakra to the sahasrara chakra. To close the “moolbandha” squeeze the point between the sexual organs and anus (like you would like to hold the pee). With experience one can experience the moolbandha on the energetic level, physical locking is stimulating the moolbandha to close it. You can practice holding this lock in any place, concentrating on contraction of a root and releasing it. It is good for energizing and flow of energy in mooladhara chakra. It is necessary to have a strong root/ base to arise energy upwardly.
Lock on the level of diaphragm, solar plexus. To close this lock and allow energy to have a passage with upward movement bring the diaphragm inside towards the spine and slightly up. Hold it tight to direct energy flow into the throat.
The lock located in the throat, to close is bring your chin towards the chest, prolongating the back of the neck. In the same time lock the tongue in shambhavi mudra rising it to the upper palate, like you would like to swallow the tongue and looking inwardly with eyes closed rise your inward gaze towards the top of your head, like you would like to look through the top of your head.
Sending energy upward from the root (mooladhara chakra) to the top of the head (sahasrara chakra) There main locks in the body are an important yogic technique to send the energy up in the body through the Shushumna channel. This process is highly beneficial for health, releasing blockages, cleansing “nadis” (meridians), healing on the physical, emotional and mental level, strengthening the nervous system, and as well when the body mind is purified, opening in an intuitive way and achieving higher states of consciousness.
During mahabandha we sit with a spine upright. It is sensible that during this process energy moves through the middle channel from the root to the top of the head. Keep the position still with elbows locked straight with hands (palms with thumbs in fists on the knees) in 90 degrees. That makes a triangle from all posture and activates an electromagnetic flow of energy in the nervous system. In this position take a rapid and quick full breath in and hold it as long as you can. Afterwards breathe out slowly under control, as slow and as long a breath out as possible. On breath out release all the locks. Repeat the Mahabandha with retention of the breath 3 times, immediately one after another.
Mahabandha is used after most of the practice in this yoga technique… after increasing lots of pranic energy, yogi close the bandhas and leads energy upwards.During this practice Prana Kundalini Shakti (energy) is flowing up, from the Mooladhara chakra to the Sahasrara chakra. This is the so-called union between Shakti and Shiva in yogic body.
Asanas (yogic positions) are cleansing the body and preparing for the experience of Kundalini energy awakening and higher states of consciousness. In this practice we will be using a dynamic version of asanas always with the application of breathing techniques.
During this practice we will focus on the centre of energy which is the spine as an axe of the body in which located is the middle channel “Shushumna” where the main chakras are located. Our focus will be also given to the “nadis” energy channels (meridians) – main 3: Ida, Pingala and Shushumna. As well there will be an awareness and recognition of geometry within the body that is a structure of energetic flow.
During practice of asanas be aware of the flow of the breath (prana), hands positions (mudras) and details of the position, which are important for a complete effect of the practice.
In the practice of yoga asanas, we generate lots of energy and that is our aim, that through the practice we awaken pranic energy to flow through the channels (nadis) and purify the body and clarify the mind. On a more deeper level this flow of energy can release the blockages held in the body as traumas, stiffness, blocks which are causes of illness and sickness on many levels. Simply saying, if there is any disturbance in the open flow of energy there is a blockage to release and bring the flow of energy to its natural way. A strong flow of pranic energy during the practice moves though the energetic body (pranayama kosha) and affects the physical body (Anamaya kosha), the pranic flow of energy is enhanced to bring up any form of blockage in the physical body, as well on the emotional or mental level. At this time, it could be a challenging process to go through, however in many cases it occurs for some period and then a release comes, and healing is done, one is free from the obstacle and disease. If someone already has a purified body, emotional & mind level, the same correspondence relates to the energetic centres (chakras), when they are clear, and the energetic flow is open then awakening of the Kundalini energy is without a so called going down process and it uplifts the energy and the state of consciousness towards the subtle levels, which experiences pure consciousness.
Yoga is a practice of asanas (body postures) which can be done in dynamic and static version. They are always accompanied with breathing practices (pranayamas). Yoga includes meditation (inward concentration) and deep relaxation. Through yoga practice one can purify body and mind and release blockages on many levels. Through regular practice strength, clarity and calmness can be obtained. Yoga session are energizing they give a release that in effect comes balance and harmony of Oneself.
Here I would like to make a distinction in Kundalini Yoga practice for asanas which gives a more effective way of awakening the Kundalini energy: those are that one’s which are done while sitting in easy pose and followed by “Mahabandha”. Other asanas are complementary towards this process, and they are helpful for flexibility of the spine, which is crucial to awaken energy flow in the chakras. However, in my opinion there is no necessity to practice many kinds of variations of asanas but to choose a few of the most important ones for specific needs and apply them to a daily yoga sadhana. For that I do recommend contacting an experienced teacher and asking for an individual sadhana practice.
(Shakti Sampraday) lineage of Arun Kumar Sharma (India)
In our hearts we are convinced of a higher truth, but there is a disconnection between the promise of knowledge and the reality of our everyday lives. It is this disharmony that is making us increasingly ill. We fall prey to new diseases, physically and psychologically. These are the signals, to stop for a minute and look around, take charge of your life, know yourself, to seek the mystery of your being.
This is where Yoga comes in, because it is a discipline that puts us in touch with our spirit. Many people take Yoga to mean physical exercises (asanas) but that is only a small part of it. The asanas and mastery of the body is a preparation for the mastery over mind, and more – the experience beyond the body and mind which connects to eternal existence. The objective of Yoga is the union of the body and the spirit – freedom, compassion and harmony.
Yoga is part of the largest tradition of the Veda that is concerned with self-knowledge. Ignorance is behind the belief that we are only our physical selves, when in fact we are spiritual beings capable of experiencing the most wonderful happiness that is not limited by time or space.
Yoga requires faith. Faith in certainty of self-transformation, the proof of which the Yogic practitioner finds in daily life. The goal of Yoga is self-transformation and transcendence, achieved by joining the body and mind to the spirit within.
Yoga in it’s true essence is about an internal fire, called Agni in Sanskrit. It is not simply an exercise system, a therapy, a philosophy or even a system of meditation. Yoga is about transformation at the deepest core of the mind and heart, which depends upon fire not as a material force but as a spiritual being and an inner guide.
Our soul is not just an abstract entity, but an inner fire connected to all the forces of the universe that we can use to change the nature of our reality, from darkness to light, from ignorance to enlightenment.
Yoga is our reintegration into the unitary light of consciousness, that is our true being.
Yoga is a methodology, a science to divide that which is you, to come to a clear – cut division so that you can see yourself in clarity.
Yoga is – a way of Life.
“Once you get a glimpse of your true nature, who you really are, the whole world changes!”