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Monday, November 8, 2010

What is the Soul?

11-7-10 Daylight Savings Time - On a day of change, let us reflect on what doesn't change.  The Soul.

The only constant things are change and the Soul.  Our souls are IDENTICAL.  It is our Divine spark seated at the heart of every individual, animal and object.  What we can say about the soul is that it is Satcidananda - eternal, knowledge, blissful.  In yoga, (which literally means to yoke, union) we are joining the individual consciousness to the Divine consciousness.  We are getting in touch with the peace of our True Nature.  Let us quiet and still the mind so we are able to rest in this peace.

Salamba Balasana (supported child's pose) with a bolster to rest upper body on.  Breathe here.  Just watch and find the natural flow and rhythm.  Don't strain or control, just observe.   Sit back on your heels and slide the bolster under your seat coming to rest your sits bones at the edge of the bolster in Virasana (hero's pose).  Simple seated twist, Urdhva Baddhanguliyasana (upward bound hands pose).  Inhale lengthen, exhale and root down.  3 Om's and theme discussion in Sukhasana (easy seat, "Indian style").  Introducing two postures for meditation here to prepare for final meditation.

Table, cat/cow, thread the needle, table balance, Adho Mukha Svanasana (downward facing dog), Balasana, Vinyasa flow (moving with the breath) child - table - dog - table- child 3x, Adho Mukha Svanasana > Plank 3x, lunge - high lunge - side prayer lunge, Uttanasana (standing forward bend), Ardha Uttanasana (halfway standing forward bend), Malasana (squat pose) 3x, Utkatasana 3x and also against the wall 3x (doing poses against the wall - using props - teaches our body the intelligence of the pose -with muscle memory we can retain this information and then apply it on our mat).  The Vira Sequence: Virabhadrasana (warrior) II - I - III - I - II.  Vrksasana (tree pose).  Dandasana (staff pose), Baddha Konasana (bound angle pose), Janu Sirsasana (head to knee pose), Marichyasana I (sage twist), Savasana with guided relaxation.

Reading from Bhagavad Gita in fetal pose after Savasana:
"Whoever perceives the whole variety of creation resting in the oneness, and knows that all action is the evolution of that oneness, that person has realized the absolute Brahman.  The Self, has no beginning nor any differentiating qualities.  Though it dwells in the perishable body, it is deathless; it is not the doer, nor is it at all affected by anything that is done.  Just as the all-pervasive akasha (etheric atmosphere) is never tainted becasue it is so subtle, so is Atman (the Soul) present throughout the body of every creature, forever untouched and immaculate."  (Ch 13: 30-32)

"Always assert that purity.  Know that you are That: 'I'm not the body, not the mind.  Immortal Self I am.'  Any time you feel you are getting near your mind when its dirty, assert yourself: 'No, I'm not the mind.  Its the mind that is getting dirty.  It is the mind that is getting restless.  I just am.'  The minute you detach yourself, you will just laugh at that mind. 'Foolish mind! Again and again I tell you not to be naughty, not to do all these things.  But you don't listen and now you come crying.'  Try this technique.  You will see how happy you can be.  Then nobody can make you unhappy.  What else do you need in this world?"
                          -Sri Swami Satchidananda The Living Gita

Seated in Sukhasana or Virasana (yogi choice) Pranayama of Deergha Swaasam (three part breath) flowing into a So-Hum breath meditation.  Inhale So, exhale Hum.  I am that I am.  I am eternal, knowledge, blissful.  I am pure consciousness.  It is a sound that already exists in everything.  Listen for it.  Inhale So, exhale Hum.

Ending Peace chant:  Lokah Samasta Sukhino Bhavantu - May all beings everywhere be free and happy.  May the entire universe be filled with Peace and Joy, Love and Light.  Namaste.

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