World Yoga Day
Yoga is both a verb and a noun; it is a way of life.
It encompasses eight integral parts known as the 8 Angas:
- Yama – Social Behavior: How we interact with others in our personal and professional lives.
- Niyama – Daily Routine: How we structure our daily activities and maintain discipline.
- Asanas – Physical Postures: Exercises that benefit the body.
- Pranayama – Breath Control: Focusing on the subtleties of breath.
- Pratyahara – Contemplation: Withdrawing our awareness from external stimuli and turning it inward.
- Dharana – Concentration: Directing our attention to a specific point.
- Dhyana – Meditation: Sustaining deep concentration on our chosen focus.
- Samadhi – Transcendence: Letting go of all mental residue and attachments.
In my daily practice, I simplify these 8 elements as ABCD:
A – Asana
B – Breath
C – Chita (Mindspace)
D – Dharana and Dhyana
ABCD serves as a starting point for our individual journeys and keeps us on the path we choose.
All forms of Yoga aim to connect the mind and body, with the breath acting as the gateway to the mind. Thus, being in Yoga is a mindset. To change our mindset, we must introduce new patterns and incorporate them into our daily routines—that is the essence of true Yoga practice.
Once we connect with the benefits Yoga brings to us personally, we can refine our practice to address our struggles and identify areas for improvement. By understanding the stretch in our bodies and overcoming the mental challenges that arise during practice, we can extend that growth beyond the mat and transform our daily lives. Of course, there are no shortcuts, consistent practice (Abyasa) coupled with detachment (Vairagya) holds the key to this transformative journey.
As our Yoga practice deepens, it helps us recognize the mindsets that hinder our progress and empowers us to let go of them. Through daily practice, we can cultivate alignment, balance, compassion, focus, and clarity. Yoga allows us to shed the burden of physical and mental weight, while the modulation of breath in pranayama enables us to engage our analytical mind and observe our path to achievement.
This Yoga lens has redefined my life, and through my workshops on Soft Skills and Yoga, I strive to offer others the same perspective. Old patterns can be weakened, and new ones can be embraced and integrated into our lives—it is through practice that this transformation occurs.
The practice happens through the body and breath, creating new and powerful imprints on the mind. This is the essence of Yoga.
On this Yoga Day, let us begin creating new patterns for ourselves, simplifying our lives, and experiencing a lighter body and mind.
Wishing everyone a Happy Yoga Day!