“To me, yoga was always more than the practice of asanas learning to contort your body in different positions. It was a guide map to a higher consciousness and a more evolved and kinder way of life.”
I have been fascinated by yoga ever since I was a young girl. But opportunities to practice yoga and to know more about Yoga were few and far between while growing up in Yugoslavia. It was when I moved to India 18 years ago that I was able to practice and familiarize myself with the discipline. To me, Yoga was always more than the practice of asanas learning to contort your body in different positions. It was a guide map to a higher consciousness and a more evolved and kinder way of life. This ‘guide map’ is as relevant today as it was when it was created more than millennia ago.
The pandemic has brought out the best and worst of humanity. Right now we need the best to outweigh the worst. For this, I want to focus on two ‘angas’ of Ashtanga Yoga – Yama and Niyama. I truly believe if we as a society can model our lives on just these two angas, we have the readymade blueprint to the more evolved and kinder way of life earlier.
This first limb, Yama, refers to vows, disciplines or practices that are primarily concerned with the world around us, and our interaction with it. While the practice of yoga can indeed increase physical strength and flexibility and aid in calming the mind, what’s the point if we’re still selfish, materialistic, and as a consequence, weak and stressed-out in day-to-day life? Ahimsa, Satya Asteya Brahmacharya, and Aparigraha can reintroduce us or reconnect with one’s ethical standards and sense of integrity, focusing on our behaviour and how we conduct ourselves in life.
Niyama gives us self-discipline and spiritual observances. Regularly attending temple or church services, saying grace before meals, developing your own personal ‘rituals’ for self -improvement – this window looking inwards to ourselves will help shape our responsible behaviour to the outside world. To evolve to this higher plane we need a sound body to house a healthy mind, and for the practice of asanas and pranayama provides us with the tools to achieve that. Round this off with Dhyana – the state of being keenly aware, yet without focus. It is awareness without judgment or attachment; it is peaceful, meditative and precedes complete bliss.
Yoga as a way of life provides all the tools we need to cope with the world we are living in, especially the pandemic in a world where countries are looking inwards rather than lending a helping hand to those who need help the most.
I am reassured in a better state of the world by being associated with Yoga & Health Expo who believe in the Yogic way of life. They shine light on the importance of Yoga in such a rapid and steadfast world. Our very survival may depend on this!
Love & Light,
Established in Vancouver, Canada, the Yoga Health Expo 2022 will be a one-day festival celebrating the joys of good well-being through a holistic approach to the Yogic way of life including Yoga, Veganism, and Vegetarianism in our lifestyle. The celebration shall welcome famous yoga teachers Vancouver, interactive yoga classes Vancouver and a platform for vegan products and vegan food Vancouver.
For more information on our upcoming International Yoga Festival & Health Expo, please visit: https://yogahealthexpo.com/.
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