How Yoga Practice Can Help Smokers Quit

Smoking is a habit that is inextricably linked with one’s emotions, which is why many refer to it as a comfort craving. When the mind feels restless, uneasy, or anxious, reaching for a cigarette stick can be a form of self-soothing, so when the habit turns into an addiction, it isn’t easy to break. However, there’s one activity that isn’t usually top of the list when it comes to smoking cessation but has proven effective as a helpful way to quit smoking: yoga.

Because of the practice’s inherently grounding nature, one can form a physical, mental, and emotional connection with the self that is conducive to recovery. According to the American Osteopathic Association, regular yoga practice can have positive effects on mental clarity, chronic stress patterns, and relaxation of the mind. The benefits of quitting smoking are well-documented, from improved lung capacity and blood circulation to a stronger immune system and lowered risk of cancers, heart conditions, and respiratory problems. But the journey to quitting isn’t linear, and because it affects both the mind and body, smoking cessation should be approached holistically.

Simply getting rid of cigarettes isn’t enough, especially since nicotine stays in your system for at least three days after use. Nicotine tests may detect the byproduct cotinine from hair, saliva, or urine, which typically covers the past three days. You may also need to take a nicotine test to comply with specific smoking cessation programs – you can learn more here on Prilla. If you’re preparing to go on a smoking cessation journey, it’s important to begin easing up as soon as possible. Introducing mindfulness practices like yoga, which involve body awareness, can train the mind to keep cravings at bay.

Harnessing yoga to stop smoking

No mumbo-jumbo here: there’s scientific evidence to prove that yoga is positively linked with quitting smoking. In one study of 30 adult daily smokers, researchers observed a 12.55% reduction in cigarette cravings after a half-hour session of yoga led by a certified Hatha yoga instructor. There’s even evidence that yoga is significantly better than other wellness-centered methods in achieving the goal of smoking cessation.

Another randomized clinical trial revealed that participants in a twice- weekly Iyengar Yoga class had 37% greater odds of achieving abstinence from smoking compared to a control group who attended general wellness classes. There are specific yoga poses one can try to open up the lungs and encourage ease of breathing. The bridge pose Setu Bandhasana takes your hips high into the air and stretches various parts of the body, improving oxygen circulation.

On the other hand, the alternate nostril breathing technique, Nadi Shodhana, is said to clear blocked energy channels and help smokers become more aware of any breathing problems they may have. Yoga-based alternate breathing for one month significantly improved cardiorespiratory parameters for 100 healthy young adults.

Challenges and Tips for Freshly Graduated Yoga Teachers

The Universe of Yoga, its challenges and opportunities for those who seek to earn a living from this millennial philosophy

Starting a career as a yoga teacher can be challenging. From security to putting into practice everything you’ve learned, to financial sustainability. In this article, you will find tips and explore the trends of the universe of Yoga, in addition to meeting Bárbara and Amalia, two Yoga instructors who share a little bit about their journeys. Their perspectives are interesting because Amalia has been a Yoga teacher for 20 years while Barbara is a new graduate.

Challenges of new Yoga teachers

The Key to Yoga Teacher Self-Confidence: Practice and Everything Will Come

It is normal to feel insecure when teaching at first. Sometimes, all you need to do is remember that your background has given you the skills you need, and trust in yourself. At other times, it is necessary to have adequate support, your “bibles” where you can find reliable and accurate information whenever necessary. 

But the main thing, according to Yoga teacher Amalia Iatarola Furtado, with 20 years of experience, is practice. “I had always had a very deep and regular Yoga practice when I became a teacher. In this respect, it was easy to start teaching, as I had a great base. When you are familiar with Yoga, you finish your training and the paths open up, things happen. You need to have a long-term personal practice”, says the instructor, who took her first Yoga training in 2003.

There are also those people who seek Yoga training to increase their overall knowledge of Yoga, and life calls them to become teachers. This was the case of Barbara Viegas da Silveira, who graduated in 2021. “When I did my training, my intention was not really to be an instructor. It turned out that this happened naturally, due to the directions my life took. I did not imagine myself teaching Yoga, but when I gave my first class, still in training, I realized how fulfilling it was to share my truth and perception of Yoga,” she says.

“My first classes were challenging. It was a mixture of fear, anxiety and nervousness, first because I was doing something new and second because I didn’t know if I would be able to reach people the way I wanted. I was afraid to make adjustments on the students, or to offer techniques beyond the level of the audience I had. I think that was my biggest challenge, knowing how to modify the class according to the needs of my group.” 

“There was only one way for me to overcome my fears and challenges: giving lots of classes. I carefully observed all of the fears and emotions that came up while teaching, and took every opportunity to overcome the fears and strengthen the positive points of each class. Anyway, the main tip is: practice regularly, hone your skills and remember that experience is the best teacher. When you are in the position of a practitioner, you understand the student’s universe better.”

How to build a base of Yoga students?

Another challenge at the beginning of a Yoga teacher’s career is to consolidate their student base. Therefore, it is necessary to act on different fronts, such as marketing, partnerships and social media. “I believe that when we are living our Dharma, magic happens. In my life, everything happened through word of mouth, because when I graduated, social media on the internet didn’t exist yet. And while the times have changed dramatically, and social media is everywhere, I believe that word of mouth is still the strongest marketing”, jokes teacher Amália.

Tips: Invest time in personal marketing, promoting yourself on social media, handing out flyers, and even offering free classes to gain visibility. Take every opportunity to share your knowledge and show your passion for yoga. Remember that your students are your biggest business card. If they are happy and satisfied with their classes, they will certainly invite others to try it out.

Can being a Yoga teacher be financially sustainable?

The financial aspect can also be a challenge. It’s important to establish a fair pricing structure that reflects your experience level and the demands of the local market, considering offering class packages or discounts to attract more students. Teacher for 20 years, Amália believes that by aligning herself with the philosophy of Yoga, the paths open to financial prosperity. “I always generated income with Yoga, but when Yoga really became my life, not just as a profession, but as a path and journey, abundance came to me naturally.”

New yoga teacher Bárbara began her career in a completely different environment, post-COVID, with a completely different set of challenges. Almost from the beginning of her Yoga teacher career, she had to learn to give classes online, involving different fears and different challenges, but her persistence has paid ooo. “Today my income is divided into Yoga and other services. I feel that living 100% from Yoga is challenging, but it is very possible! It takes great dedication, as in everything in life, and online is a great tool for that, being able to connect with people who are in different places”, she says.

Material tips to prepare your Yoga class

Indicated by the instructors, we list here the best materials to prepare your Yoga class, gathering knowledge at the physical, subtle, mental, emotional and spiritual levels.

Yoga Toolbox for Teachers and Students

“I was blown away by the depth of the material. The Yoga Toolbox is a precious, valuable material, with an absurd amount of knowledge”, says Amália.

Asana and Mudra  Card Decks

“In the beginning, I used decks a lot. I took the cards to class to help me remember the sequences. I began planning my classes using the Yoga Toolbox and then moved on to the decks. Today, I use the Toolbox a lot for specific questions, about variations, a muscle group or some benefit or contraindication of an asana”, says Barbara.

 

Samkhya Philosophy for Children of all Ages

Once upon a time, there was a planet called Purusha. You could say that Purusha was a perfect place to live; everyone was happy and there was a sense of timelessness and limitlessness. In fact, the people of Purusha were complete in every way. The only problem was that in all that vast kingdom there wasn’t a mirror to be found. Without a mirror, the Purushans couldn’t see themselves, so although they were perfect, they had no way to recognize or become aware of their inherent perfection. This absence of a mirror in which to see their own reflection, is the source of a desire or longing to go in search of a way of Self-knowing.

One day, the Purushans heard about a far-away planet called Prakṛti where it was possible to know oneself in a world of duality, with the world out there and a separate “me” to experience it. This world of duality could be experienced through sound, touch, sight, taste and smell, so it was indeed a mirror for all five senses. By traveling to Prakṛti, the Purushans would be able to have all the limitless peace and joy of planet Purusha and also to be conscious of it; a journey of exploration and learning, to return to Purusha both whole and aware of their wholeness.

To make the journey to planet Prakṛti, the Purushans needed spacecraft that could withstand the atmosphere when they arrived, so they built their ships from the same five elements that comprise planet Prakṛti – earth, water, fire, air, and space. Each ship was hand-crafted and had individual characteristics, but overall, they fit into three basic models: the kapha ships were dense and solid, the pitta ships were fast and fiery, with powerful engines, and the vata models were light and quick.

 

The ship itself is called the Body. At the center of each ship is the principal passenger called Spirit, which carries the essence of limitless freedom and consciousness, the hallmark of planet Purusha. Each ship also has a pilot called “Mind”. Body, Mind, and Spirit must work together to make the journey, with the understanding that both the body and the mind are ultimately vehicles for the journey of the Soul toward Self-knowledge.

At the beginning of their journey, the Purushans installed a powerful transmitter in space so they would always be in touch with planet Purusha. This transmitter to and from Purusha was called Mahat, which means “the great” so that the essence of wholeness and limitless which are the hallmarks of planet Purusha would never be lost. Each spacecraft also had an ultra-intelligent on-board computer, called Buddhi, to make sure that signals coming from Purusha were received and transmitted to the pilot to guide the ship to planet Prakriti and to return to planet Purusha. Each ship has its own unique identity or sense of individuality since each is a unique combination of the five elements, so that the journey and destiny of each is unique, both in the journey to prakriti and the way of return to Purusha. This unique and individual identity for each traveler is called Ahamakara, which can be loosely translated as – I want to do it my way!

While each ship has a unique journey, overall, they fall into three basic categories. The kapha ships are heavy and slow but make steady progress. The pitta craft excel in speed and performance, but when things go wrong, time is lost looking for who to blame. The vata craft have the most exciting journey, exploring different universes and planets, but often forgetting where they left the keys to the spaceship. In the end, all the spaceships arrived at the same time.

As they near planet Prakṛti, the pilots prepare the sensing devices they need for exploration. One set of sensing devices is the jnanendriyas, or instruments of knowing, including the ability to smell, taste see, touch and hear. The others are instruments for action called karmendriyas, such as ability to speak, touch, move, grasp, eliminate waste, and even to procreate little Purushan ships as the complete journey may take more than one generation.

As the ships near planet Prakṛti, they encounter a series of unexpected storms that form part of its atmosphere. There are storms of tremendous energy and turbulence, called rajas. There are also doldrums, called tamas, in which nothing moves at all. These cycles of rajas and tamas are interspersed with moments of perfect balance, called sattva, when the journey flows smoothly and effortlessly.

 

All the ships manage to reach planet Prakṛti, but the journey is a difficult one. Many of the pilots arrived traumatized and suffering from chronic recurring amnesia in which they forget their original mission of exploration and Self-knowledge in order to return to planet Purusha. They come to believe that they are their ships comprised of the five elements and use their senses and organs of action to seek pleasure and avoid pain believing prakriti and its experiences to be their sole reality, while the passenger and the reason for the journey, Spirit is completely forgotten or is just a distant memory. With their original mission forgotten, their time is spent at the mall looking for items to beautify the ship or on vacation taking selfies.

This pattern of driving their ships around in circles to stay busy, while never finding life’s true purpose or meaning is called, Samsara, which literally means, going around in circles. But no matter how much they try to stay busy to avoid looking at their lives more deeply, there is a subtle inner voice coming from Spirit, telling them that there must be some deeper purpose and meaning for living.

Those who hear this message more clearly are the Rishis, or seers, and Gurus, the ones who can lead the people from the circular patterns of planet Prakṛti, back to the remembering who they really are as citizens of Purusha. These pioneers are also called Yogis which means to join, or in this case to reunite  with who we are as Spirit.

Those that decide to make the journey home to Purusha first need to repair their ships from the damage caused by the chronic stress and sensory overload that is the nature of a planet under the sway of the three gunas and the constant roller coaster of ups and downs. These repair stations use a science called Ayurveda to rebalance the five elements from which the ships are made. Sometimes all the ships’ systems must be completely cleaned out in a process called Panchakarma. Once in balance, the ships need a path for their journey home, and one of the clearest of these is by the Sage Patanjali: A manual on the return to Planet Purusha in 8 steps, called Ashtanga Yoga.

The first two steps, called yama and niyama, are guides for conduct and behavior on the journey home. The third step, asana, is a guide for keeping the ship stable and comfortable to ensure its safety along the way. The fourth step, pranayama, involves having adequate energy for the journey and using this energy wisely. The fifth step, pratyahara, is removing the attention of the pilot from all of the distractions on planet

Prakṛti so they can focus on their journey of return. The sixth step, dharana, is setting a steady one-pointed course and staying that course all the way home. The seventh step, dhyana or meditation, is the journey itself, with all the ship’s systems functioning spontaneously and effortlessly, guided by Buddhi in  contact with Mahat to maintain a continuous communication with the energy of peace and joy from planet Purusha.

Through the methodology of Asthanga Yoga, many of the ships can return home, and once there, reassume their true identity as citizens of planet Purusha and return to a state of peace, wholeness and harmony called samadhi, the final step of the eight-limb journey. These explorers, however, are not the same as when they left. Now they have a mirror of consciousness. They know planet Prakṛti and the world of duality and now, returning home to planet Purusha they are complete and whole and know it to be so.

The final and deepest learning from this journey is that planet Purusha and planet Prakṛti are actually one.  The world of matter and the world of spirit are not opposed to each other and our own version of planet Prakṛti, called Earth, is calling out for us to treat her with love and reverence so that Purusha and Prakṛti  may live together in peace and joy happily every after.

 

The Sixteen Qualities of Authentic Being

Our true Being, purusha, is ultimately beyond all description because it is beyond the mind and the realm of prakriti. We can, however, gain a sense of our inner Being by recognizing and cultivating its essential qualities. These qualities are said to be sixteen which represents the number of petals of the throat chakra. 16 is described as a perfect number because it represents the perfect harmony between the moon’s waxing and waning. All the numbers of the petals of the chakras culminate in 16:

First chakra = 4 petals; Second chakra, 4+2=6 petals; Third chakra, 6+4=10 petals, Fourth chakra, 10+2=12 petals, Fifth Chakra, 12=4=16 petals, Sixth chakra = 2 petals remaining. It is the throat chakra where the sixteen limiting tendencies related to the conditioned personality are seen, questioned, and released and also where the sixteen qualities of authentic Being are integrated, allowing us to speak our truth from our inner Being rather than the conditioned personality.

  1. Changelessness – avyakta

Within the realm of prakriti, everything is in a process of constant change, but the observer, our inner being, which has always been and always will be, is primordial and unchanging, avyakta.  To experience this quality, place your hands in Adhi mudra and take six breaths, allowing this quality to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant,

Om Avyakta Devaya Namaha.

       

2. Wholeness – purnatvam

Within the realm of prakriti, the results of our activities and our perception of our own being are seldom whole or complete and are often subject to feelings of inadequcy, fefectiveness or failure. In our interactions in our surroundings, it seems there is always something that we want to have, do or change within ourselves or in our surroundings, or both in order to feel complete. In contrast, our inner Being is naturally whole and complete, purnatvam, so that we don’t sense a compulsive need to do or achieve in our surroundings. Also, when we do make plan and organize projects, we are less projects attached to the results and more attentive to the process of learning that occurs along the journey.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Hakini mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of wholeness to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Purnatvam Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Naturalness – sahaja.

Within the realm of prakriti, it is common to sense that we are not completely comfortabel or that we cannot truly be ourselves or even that we are living a life planned for us that is not truly our own. As we align with our inner being, we experience a naturalness, sahaja, in living as if we are always in the right place, at the right time and can be completely relaxed and natural just as we are.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Ushas mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of naturalness to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant, Om Anuthana Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. intrinsic joy – mudita

 

Within the realm of prakriti, satisfaction and happiness are largely dependent on our surroundings. As we unite more completely with our inner Being, we discover an inner spring of joy and peace that wells up from within us and overflows into our surroundings. This inner spring provides joy and satisfaction ongoingly and is especially important when we face obstacles and challenges, allowing us in meeting them more objectively and with a knowing that our inner peace prevails no matter what is happening in our surroundings. This inner joy is also important inradiating the energy of cheerfulness and good humor that are reflections of inner Being into our surroundings to support others on the journey of awakening.

 

To experience this quality, place your hands in Hansi mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of intrinsic joy to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant, Om Mudita Devaya Namaha

 

  1. Lightness – laghiman

 At the level of the conditioned personality, tension and resistance are often the result of the constant tug of war between our perceived needs and our perceived capabilities and possibilities. This often results in stress and an inner and outer atmosphere of density and heaviness. Under the effects of stress, there is a tendency to identify with the limited personality and take things, even little things, seriously and personally, resulting in even more heaviness, stress, and subsequent suffering. This heaviness and stress are an important factor in the development of body-mind disease. As we align with our inner Being, we a take wider view of interactions and situations in our surroundings, recognizing that they exist to guide us along our journey by showing us the core beliefs that are the cause of suffering. Within this wider perspective, we release the stress and heaviness that are the cause of dis-ease allowing us to live with lightness and ease and a sense of playfulness even when situations are challenging.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Hastaphula mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of lightness and ease to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant, Om Laghiman Devaya Namaha

 

  1. Equanimity – samatva

At the level of the conditioned personality, life can often seem like a roller coaster where we are either going up or coming down with only brief moments of balance in between. As we align with our inner Being, we discover a place of deep inner peace and equanimity like being in the depths of the sea where the storms that rage on the surface are barely felt and no linger have the power to throw us off our center. With greater centering and equanimity, any unforeseen challenge that arises is seen as an opportunity to recognize and dissolve any limiting core beliefs that keep us bound to the limited personality. And, even when we lose our balance, we recover more quickly.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Dhyana mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of equanimity to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant, Om Samatva Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Life purpose – Svadharma

At the level of the conditioned personality, confusion as to our life purpose and meaning is much more common than certainty. As we unite with our inner Being, we gain a knowing of who we are beyond all theory and questioning, and also recognize this knowing as our life purpose and meaning. With this sense of meaning, we are guided to unfold our unique talents and possibilities which, in one form or another, serve the entire journey of huamnity toward its destiny in the form of Self-knowledge and spiritual awakening.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Kubera mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of knowing your life purpose and meaning to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant, Om Svadharma Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Compassion – Karuna

Within the realm of prakriti, we tend to frame all experiences and interactions within the lens of our own limited conditioning. As we align with our inner Being, we cultivate compassion which is the ability to see situations through the eyes of others; to see life as other see it. With this vision we see others suffering and understand intuitively the conditioning that brought this suffering into being. We also see that the core intention of others, even when their level of consciousness is limited, is not to create harm or negativity but only to find happiness and avoid suffering within the limits of their understanding. We also understand that when others act negatively, it is not directed toward us personally, but only reflections of their own limitations and misperceived needs and priorities that get projected onto anyone that happens to be in their way. We can also recognize that these people’s suffering is real and that we too have suffered in this way in the past and acted unconsciously. We also see that other people’s beliefs, just like our own, are not fixed, for each individual always has the capacity to transform themselves and live more consciously. Finally, we recognize that the best way to support other in changing their attitudes and tendencies is not through criticism or advice, but through our own example of living in peace and equanimity.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Karuna mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of compassion to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Karuna Devaya Namaha.

 

9.Discernment – Viveka

At the level of the limited personality, there is a tendency to identify with our conditioned ways of seeing and being, even when we know that they don’t offer the possibilty of freedom, happiness and peace, but instead tend to perpetuate patterns of limitation and suffering. As our recognition of our inner Being as our true identity becomes more complete, we are able to discern clearly between the klishta vrittis, the thoughts, feelings and beliefs that cause suffering, and the aklishta vrittis, the movements within consciousness that lead to fredom and awakening. Limiting vriitis that lead to suffering will not dissolve quickly because of the depth of our conditioning, but, through discernment, we develop the ability to witness them without reacting unconsciously. Witnessing gradualy reduces the power of these pain producing vrittis, allowing us to live with greater freedom and autonomy.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Citta mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of compassion to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Viveka Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Surrender to the Lord – Ishvara Pranidhana

Within the realm of prakriti, we tend to rely on our skills and abilities at the level of the personality to find, happiness, success and meaning. Since prakriti is goverend by the three gunas and therfore in a characterized by mutability and uncertainty, the reults are always mixed and often lead to suffering when our plans and expectaions do not materialize as expected. As we align with our inner Being, we recognize it as a reflection of the intelligence at the heart of all things, Ishvara, the Source Energy. By aligning with the Source, we transcend the the ups and downs within the realm of the gunas and recognize that the happines, success and peace we seek are the very nature of our own Being as reflections of the infinite nature of the Source Energy. Through this alignment with Source, we enter into a state of Divine grace, which both guides and protects us along our journey. Within the light of grace, we find a synchrony with universal rhythms and become co-creators within our surrounding to support the greater destiny of humanity as spiritual awakening into being. We also use our challenges and difficulties as ways of seeing where we are still clingin onto the limited personality so that we can surrender ever more deeply.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Pushpanjali mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of surrender to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Ishvara Pranidhana Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Inner Silence – Antar Mauna

At the level of the conditioned personality, the level of contentment and peace we encounter is usually dependent on circumstances in our surroundings. In terms of inner silence, most struggle in meditation for a considerable length of time to find moments of silence. Through ever deepening surrender and grace, we naturally begin to experience inner silence and inner peace through aligning with our inner being which is simultaneously union with the Source Energy. This silence and peace is beyond the mind and the realm of prakriti and therefore more immune to the ups and downs in our surroundings.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Kurma mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of Inner Silence to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Antar Mauna Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Omniscience – Sarvavidya

Within the realm of prakriti, we tend to learn compartamentally, mastering pieces of information on specific themes.  Even when we become Phd.s, our knowledge in any area is is limited. In terms of the larger picture of existence, the more science discovers, the more question arise and the scope of our understanding is dwarfed by the infinity of creation. For example, the more physicas adavances, the more the definition of material creation resembles that which Yoga has ascertained intuitively, and endless field of energy whose manifestaion as materiality is almost nothing! As we align with our inner Being as a reflection and extension of the Source energy, we cultivate a differeny type of knowlegd in the form of an intuitive knowing of the essence of all things, of the laws that govern creation itself and of the Source that underlies these. This knowing provides alsolut sertaint about whowe are, the nature of created things and our life purpose and destiny in the form of spiritual awakening.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Bhairava mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of omniscience to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Sarvavidya Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Limitlessness – Ananta

At the level of the conditioned personality, limitation is an ever-present reality. We almost never achieve our wants and needs completely. And, by our very human nature, as soon as we do attain something, there is a tendency to want more or better or different. Moreover, even when we have all we need at a practical level, there are inner patterns of defectiveness and deficiency that continue to create a sense of limitation and subsequent suffering. As we align with our inner Being, we recognize that the true nature of both the creator and the creation is limitlessness. This even applies to our understanding of the universe where science often seeks to find frontiers and boundaries but where the reality just keeps expanding. As we become one with the limitless creative, we experience it as the nature of our own Being in samadhi. We also gradually integrate it into daily living where we come to understand that our capacity for living fully and joyfully is also limitless. Simultaneously, even at the level of material manifestation, we come to see that our ability to unfold our unique talents and possibilities for the good of all beings is also limitless.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Ananta mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of limitlessness to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Ananta Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Self-mastery – Vashitvam

At the level of the conditioned personality, there is a strong tendency to identify with and be subject to a wide range of emotions, drives and instincts related to likes, dislikes, and perceived needs. Emotional patterns such as a sense of loss, shame, neediness, or grief can encompass and characterize our entire personality. As we align with our inner Being, we recognize that these tendencies exist only in our mind and in patterns of conditioned beliefs that have no basis in reality. We therefore cultivate the ability to witness these patterns of negativity, no matter how powerful they may seem, without identifying with them as “me.” Through this commitment to no identify with patterns that ultimately cause suffering, we gradually develop autonomy, the freedom to choose our thoughts, emotions and beliefs beyond the realm of our conditioning which is the essence of self-mastery.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Kaleshvara mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of limitlessness to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Vashitvam Devaya Namaha.

 

  1. Unconditional Love – Prema

At the level of the conditioned personality, love is usually dependent on our surroundings and in reciprocity. When we receive affection, nurturance and caring, it is easy to respond in ways that are loving. When this caring is not present, we rend to react, and the source of love can quickly transform into a source of hurt and pain. As we align with our inner Being, we recognize it as our very nature in the form of caring and positivity. Love is the very essence of creation when we release all the conditioning that keeps us searching for satisfaction and happiness in our surroundings. At a practical level, this wider experience of love permeates our relationships so that we are able to see everyone wants the love and happiness that is a reflection of their true Being, who they are in reality. In the end, love is simply a home coming. Through this recognition, we can avoid the neediness and codependency that keeps us from loving unconditionally.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Padma mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of unconditional love to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Prema Devaya Namaha.

  1. Spiritual Freedom – Moksha

Through the cultivation and unfolding of all the other qualities, we naturally experience freedom as our very nature; a sense that we are no longer bound either to our own conditioning or to situations in our surroundings. We are also free from fear of deathj as we recognize that our inner being, as one with the total, has always been and will always be. In complete freedom and imortality, we also recognize ourselves as one with the intelligence at the heart of all things, Ishvara, the Source Energy. Challenges may continue to arise, but we deal with them objectively without the need to take anything personally. Within this lived experience of freedom, which we recognize as our life purpose and meaning, our energy is freed from patterns of resistance and anxiety, allowing us to support all beings on the journey of awakening.

To experience this quality, place your hands in Jnana mudra and take 6 breaths, allowing this quality of spiritual freedom to blossom from within and permeate your entire being as you chant Om Moksha Devaya Namaha.

Por Joseh Le Page

Foto capa: Laion Cantarelli

Pratiloma Ujjayi Pranayama Practice

This pranayama is excellent for balancing of the body and cultivating a deep sense of centering.

Watch the video on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g82cPuaCwag

 

Joseph Le Page interview with Catherine Carrigan, host of the Natural Healing Show for U.K. Health Radio

In this interview, Joseph gives excellent succinct definitions of the Five Koshas, the Five Kleshas and the Eight Limbs of Yoga in relation to health and healing.

To watch click here.

4th Edition of the Yoga Toolbox for Teachers and Students

What’s Different, What’s New, and How to Get It

First published in 2005, the Yoga Toolbox has inspired the practice of countless students and served as an invaluable support for teachers of Yoga. 

The focus of the Yoga Toolbox is to present a multi-dimensional approach to the practice of Yoga postures that includes physical health, balance in the subtle body, psycho-emotional integration and spiritual awakening. 

This new edition has been completely updated, with refinements in the instructions, new modifications, and a streamlined design.  

Our most exciting news is that the Yoga Toolbox has gone digital! You can now access all of the book’s content in videos through the Yoga Toolbox app.

More than 1,000 videos are available: 

Introductory information for each posture, with Sanskrit meaning, essential quality,      affirmation asana symbolism, benefits for each kosha and contraindications; 

Instructions for how to perform each posture, with cues that guide the physical alignments as well as the exploration of the more subtle dimensions; 

Modifications and variations for each posture; 

Complete 60-minute Integrative Yoga practices for levels I, II and III; 

Warm-up exercises, including a somatic sequence, sun and moon salutations and more.

The hard copy of the new edition of the Yoga Toolbox is already available on our site.

The digital information will be available for download by March 1st!

How to access the Yoga Toolbox App

To access the Yoga Toolbox app, go to page 1 of the book and get your access code by scratching off the sticker. Then, download the app from the website iytyogatherapy.com and register.

You will also be able to access the videos and a full electronic version of the Yoga Toolbox from your computer, on iytyogatherapy.com, using the same access code from the front cover of your book.

 

Dr. Ananda Balayogi will present Yoga as a Path of Healing in Brazil.

Yoga as a Path of Healing – DATES TO BE ANNOUNCED

An in-depth understanding of the benefits of Yoga

With Doctor Ananda Balayogi Bhavanani

Doctor Ananda Balayogi Bhavanani is unique among Yoga masters in India today in that he is one of India’s best-known authorities in the field of Yoga therapy and Yoga research as director of CYTER, the Center of Yoga Therapy for Education and Research of Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (housing the Mahatma Gandhi Medical College) in Pondicherry, India. Dr. Ananda is also a lineage holder for one of India’s oldest and mostly respected traditions of Yoga, the Gitananda tradition. Gitananda Yoga is a unique synthesis of ancient wisdom and modern science, following a tradition of eight Yoga masters reaching back into the 19th century. At the same time, Doctor Ananda’s father, Swami Gitananda Giri, a medical doctor, developed one of India’s most in-depth approaches to all of the Hatha and Raja Yoga sciences including asana, pranayama, mudra and meditation which he brought to the West starting in the 1950’s.

Dr. Ananda has authored 19 DVDs and 23 books on Yoga as well as published more than two hundred and fifty papers, compilations and abstracts on Yoga and Yoga research in National and International Journals. In addition, he is a Classical Indian Vocalist, Percussionist, Music Composer and Choreographer of Indian Classical Dance. He is a Member of the National Board for Yoga in the Ministry of AYUSH (ministry of traditional healing methodologies) of the Government of India and Consultant Yoga Expert for the WHO.

In this unique five-day experience, Doctor Ananda will provide a thorough understanding of Yoga as a path of healing, both at physical and subtle levels. This will be accompanied by experiences of the Yoga techniques from the Gitananda tradition presented by Dr. Ananda and some of his leading students to awaken these benefits. The course will be presented in English with translation into Portuguese.

Focus of the course

  • Understanding the systems of the body from both the Western and Yoga perspective and how Yoga cultivates optimal health. Specific practices from the Gitananda tradition will be given for each system.
  • The special importance of the autonomic nervous system in regulating states of relaxation and how this occurs at a physiological level along with the specific Yoga tools for regulating the nervous system.The special importance of the breath and pranayama for balancing all of the systems of the physical body and purifying the energy channels of the subtle body.
  • Understanding how the subtle systems of the body, including the chakras and pranavayus, function as vehicles for health and healing including specific practices from the Gitananda tradition for each subtle system.
  • Understanding the essence of spirituality within Yoga and its relationship to health and healing along with specific meditations for awakening the spiritual dimension.
  • The importance of sound and music in healing through Indian classical Carnatic vocal music. Doctor Ananda is a master of this art and will present a concert of Carnatic vocal singing.
  • The importance of sacred ritual for health, healing and awakening. Doctor Ananda will perform a fire ceremony for the health and healing of the participants.

The program includes

  • 6 nights of accommodation
  • 3 vegetarian meals daily
  • Daily Yoga and meditation practice with Dr. Ananda or his senior students
  • Morning and afternoon lecture and practice with Dr. Ananda
  • Evening activities with Dr. Ananda, including Indian classical music
  • Transportation from the Florianopolis International Airport to Enchanted Mountain
  • Tour of the local area and beaches on Sunday the 25th

* No Brazilian visa is needed for US or Canadian citizens

Course fee + Accommodation per person

Triple room – $ 895.00

Double room – $ 995.00

Single room – $1095.00

Students are invited to arrive on Saturday, 24th of October, in order to rest before the program begins on the evening of the 25th. A tour of the beautiful coastal village of Garopaba during the day on Sunday the 25th is included in your package.

$ 100.00 is paid at the time of registration. The balance is paid on your credit card at the retreat site.

Enchanted Mountain Yoga Festival – Friday, October 30th to Monday, November 2nd * date might suffer some changes due to the Coronavirus pandemic

Following Dr. Ananda’s program, there will be a three-day Yoga Festival at Enchanted Mountain during which Dr. Ananda will be the keynote speaker and guest of honor. Dr. Ananda’s presentations will be in English with translation in Portuguese. The other presentations and Yoga classes will be in Portuguese.

Festival fee + accommodation + 3 meals per day per person

Triple room – $395.00

Double room – $495.00

For reservations please contact iytyogatherapy@gmail.com

YOGA VACATION PACKAGE