Over the past ten years or so I have told myself I would start practicing yoga daily. I tried power yoga, other physical yoga types, and those that focus more on inner balance and serenity. Well, it wasn’t until after I began practicing Heartfulness meditation that I began doing yoga more often. I didn’t intend for this to happen, in fact I hadn’t thought about yoga at all when I started receiving Heartfulness sessions. However, through my workout routine, through friends I have met in person and on social media, I have now incorporated yoga into my life. I must admit that it still isn’t a daily practice, but it is at least an every-other-day practice. I write this and realize that as long as I do Heartfulness meditation I actually am practicing Raja Yoga daily.
I have thought about why yoga is a more consistent part of my life now. When I look back and think about how conversations kept popping up from various sources, about doing yoga, I see all those occurrences as omens, if you will, signs telling me that it was time to incorporate this practice. Still, the question remained as to why I would want to do it in the first place.
Was it because I wanted to get in better physical shape?
Was it because I wanted to learn to breathe better?
Was it because I wanted to work on inner balance?
Was it because I was looking for more spiritual fulfillment?
Was it because I wanted to have a good reason to wear yoga pants?
Truth is, it was most of these reasons; minus the yoga pants bit.
I feel that beginning my Heartfulness meditation journey sparked an overall interest in spiritual advancement from a heart place, and not really a mental place. This is why I subconsciously decided to take on yoga more consistently after beginning Heartfulness meditation.
I see that the two really do work together. For instance, the Hatha Yoga we practiced during a Heartfulness Training workshop enhanced my experience because it also focused on relaxation and a spiritual awareness, through awareness and release of my body during each yoga session. In other words, I would say that during the yoga sessions there, after we relaxed and did our breathing exercises when it was time to go through the asanas, I felt like my body had been transformed into a more fluid form of energy. It was leaning back and stretching forward, and doing all these moves in a fluid motion. I was still aware of having good posture and aligning my body well, but I also felt like I had released my body so it could flow.
Since I have come back home from my Heartfulness workshop, my middle child is much more involved in the whole process as well. She used to like the relaxation we did, that is part of Heartfulness, but now she wants to guide yoga sessions. She will ask if I (or anyone else) feel like doing yoga, and then she will sit and tell me to do the same. She closes her eyes, takes a deep breath and begins. “Om,” she says. She takes another deep breath and repeats “Om”. When she is all done with that, she puts her hands together and says “Namaste”. Sometimes she follows with stretches and asanas, sometimes she doesn’t. What amazes me about this, in a very unbiased way, is that she is completely submerged in this process. No sounds or people bother her, and she, herself, does not get giddy or distracted by anything. I suppose it shouldn’t really amaze me, as she is a child, but it is still so sweet and moving to see. Oh, she is four years old.
Overall I see how yoga and Heartfulness meditation are working together for my physical, spiritual, and mental health. Additionally, I see how their practice also affects people around me either by our day-to-day interactions or by them picking up the same habits and using them in their lives. Lastly, I see how my children are uplifted by my practice of Heartfulness meditation and yoga, and I am happy to see them learn to take care of their overall health.
PS: I do admit that yoga pants are very comfortable, too.
We invite you to join us on 21st June, International Day of Yoga, to watch a live webcast here from Daaji, starting 7 AM IST, and available all day.
An Article by Sophia neghesti-Johnson, Heartfulness Trainer, USA.
Sophia Neghesti-Johnson, is a mother of three children, who likes to focus on the arts’ side of life. She is a visual artist with expression through painting, drawing, and photography. Sophia is a published children’s book author and writer. You can find her blogging at World Moms Network and Think Say Be.wordpress.com. She is a practitioner and trainer of Heartfulness Meditation.