SANKALPA, the intention

SANKALPA, the intention

An intention hides behind every of our action, this is what motivates us, animates us every day

In yoga, I often invite my students at the beginning of the session to “settle” internally an intention for our practice, but also for the rest of the day, week, month, year to come.

It can be something very simple (being present, relaxing …), a quality that you want to cultivate (patience, compassion towards oneself …), dedicate the session to someone who would need it … everything is allowed, as long as the intention comes from the depths of ourselves, and not from the mental diktat.

It should be something positive, like an inspiration for what is to come. Once this intention is put, it is simply allowed to exist, to grow alone as a seed that would have been sown inside.

My intention for this year of practice with you? Share in the simplest possible way the yogic tools that allow me to find space, freedom, calm in everyday life.

And you, what is your sankalpa, your intention for this new year? What led you to read these lines? Would you take a minute to listen to your inner voice whispers ?

 

When everything becomes yoga

When everything becomes yoga

Stand Up Paddle yoga, flying yoga, acro yoga, yogalates, hardcore yoga and even beer yoga …

Today the types of yoga are almost infinite, integrating various techniques, more or less ancient. And I think this is very good if it helps every single one to find a method, an approach that best suits him to connect to himself.

Dr. Coudron, a doctor and yoga therapist, says that to be yoga, the method must respect the following principles:

do not hurt (“primum non nocere”, first do no harm, the golden rule of medicine, which joins one of the essential principles of yoga, ahimsa, non-violence, towards oneself and others)

coordinate movement and breath,

develop awareness and attention to what is being done.

In my opinion, everything that brings together these 3 ingredients can therefore be considered as yoga, including doing housework! From there, you have a lot more than a minute a day to practice 😉

 

We are all heroes ! My Christmas tale for you

We are all heroes ! My Christmas tale for you

In the tales of our childhood, mythology or literature, the story is often the same, and for a good reason, it is finally the story of human adventure that is traced … to help us to move forward!

It usually begins with suffering (sickness, loss, material opulence that no longer satisfies). Then one undertakes a journey, a quest (external in stories, often internal in life).

This is how we meet and fight against all kinds of demoniac creatures, dark areas. But there are also benevolent spirits, wise (wo)men, and internal guides.

Then something calls us back to life and allows us to reintegrate it.

In the stories, then comes the time to celebrate. Rejoice as the Buddhists say! And it is this part that we forget maybe a little too often in our modern Western society.

This is the traditional Asterix banquet! The celebration of our journey, our adventure, our victory, big or small, gives value to the work accomplished. It is an integral part of the adventure.

Have you forgotten to rejoice of one of your quests recently? It’s not too late 😉

 

The Prana

The Prana

For the yogi, Prana is the vital energy. It is the equivalent of qi or chi. “Pra” means “before”, “na” “breathing”. Prana is the energy that precedes all life according to yogic tradition.

Without Prana, no life then. Thus we shall leave this earth by an expiration of the last little Prana which kept us alive until then.

Prana is found not only in healthy, untreated food, but also in the air we breathe. That is why some yogis claim to have lived several years by feeding exclusively with Prana (no physical nourishment!)

To fill up with Prana is to fill up with vital energy.

The next time you are in a place that seems to be loaded with this Prana (in the forest, by the sea, in the countryside, in a park, by a lake, in the mountains etc.), try to fill up yourself: take several deep inhalations while thinking of this Prana vibrating around you that enters your lungs

Hold the breath for a moment and then exhale by letting the Prana spread in all the cells of your body 🙂

 

What is a chakra?

What is a chakra?

Chakra means wheel in Sanskrit. According to the yogic philosophy, they are centers of junction between the different channels of energy through the body. We would have thousands.

The 7 main ones are the the most well-known. They allow the circulation of the lunar and solar energies (ida and pingala) but also of the Kundalini which circulates through our main channel (sushumna).

Kundalini is a very powerful energy dormant in our lowest energy center: muladara chakra. When the chakras are opened, the kundalini can ascend into the sushumna, cleansing and purifying this channel to the top (swadistana chakra). Then we can experience enlightenment.

What blocks the way? Our experiences of life : what is not expressed leaves an imprint !

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the meridians follow paths very similar to those of the nadis described by the yogis. Modern research now allows us to understand that these are nerve plexuses, common compression points, fascia continuity, blood and lymphatic circulation channels.

That is why the practice of yoga helps us to lift the emotional blockages, those linked to ego, toxins … that stagnate at these specific points.

Can you try to connect to your root chakra, inside your perineum ?

 

What is a yogi ?

What is a yogi ?

In the feminine, yogini! It is a yoga practitioner who knows or is seeking this experience of union, of yoga.

No need to be Hindu, you just need to have a soul. And when you’re alive, I tend to believe that you have one …

Whether one is spiritual or not, it is what we are in the depths of ourselves, which does not change but which we sometimes try to hide from the world, Purusha for the yogis.

Yoga is a practice that helps to learn to know oneself, to listen to this deep, profound force. We all look for something: peace and harmony.

The yogi is the one who has chosen yoga as a path toward that.

 

“Know thyself !”

“Know thyself !”

My first contact with philosophy happened in my final year of high school. I had a teacher who started the year writing in ancient Greek : “Gnothi seauton ῶνῶθι σεαυτόν“. Then he digressed until the end of the year ! For the baccalaureate I did not feel very prepared but today I tell myself that he transmitted to me the essential, as the theme is such a recurrent one through all times around the world.

The more I read, study and and integrate texts dealing with philosophy (culture-jam, I am fan of etymology, and do not resist the temptation to tell you that etymologically the philosopher is the “friend of wisdom”), the more I I realize that this injunction precedes and contains everything.

Inscription of the temple of Delphi taken up by Socrates, the “soul deliver” teaches that it is by knowing himself, by seeking within himself, that man can find wisdom.

It is a question then of re-knowing our qualities, our faults, our tendencies, our “stories”, the mental filters through which we see the world and thus our limits for example.

To know our true nature, we would have to take a step back, learn also to listen to ourselves … and this is really interesting because it is also what yoga also offers 🙂