Ajna Chakra

Chakra may now be a common term to you and you may even have an understanding of ajna chakraits meaning.

The chakras (meaning wheel or cycle) are culmination points for nadis (channels) of prana sacral chakra(energy or lifeforce). A useful analogy when considering chakras is to envision nadis as highways, filled with cars (prana) and the chakras are the intersections and roundabouts where these highways meet.

The chakras reside on the sushumna nadi, which is the central channel of energy that is aligned with the spinal column.

Let’s look closely at the third eye chakra:

Ajna Chakra

Ajna means purity and unlimited power and possesses the seed sound aum (or om).

Ajna is also known as the third eye and is located at the centre of the brow and rules our pituitary and pineal glands, the brain, eyes and nose and sinuses.

It guides our intuition, perception, conscience and our experience of the non ego self, third eye yoga adelaidewhere we are at one with creation. This is where our visualisation, imagination, dreams and wisdom emanates from. In this energetic space of the third eye our awareness opens to the Divine and we develop a strong insight and truth through intuition. Here rests our highest mind that looks inwards and is purported to be the eye of Shiva or of a higher consciousness. It is a meeting point of prana where the pranic channels, ida, pingala and sushuma, collide and host the seat of our life force.

‘…in every man there is an eye of the soul, which…is more precious far than ten thousand bodily eyes, for by it alone is truth seen,’ Plato.

The yantra comprises of a circle with two luminous petals, representing ida and pingla as well as representing the union of Shakti and Shiva.

If this chakra is flowing freely you may be aware of headaches, sinus infections, blocked noses and the inability to notice things or imagine your own future.

Things that can help create a healthy ajna chakra include:

  • meditation
  • drawing/painting
  • dream journalling and interpretation
  • hypnosis
  • nadi sodhana

Asana that can contribute to a healthy ajna chakra:

  • Balasana
  • Gomukasana
  • Paschimottanasana
  • Svasana
  • Advasana
  • Ananda madirasana
  • Palming

‘As the ajna chakra is pierced, you experience the merging state of the mind. The mind becomes very still and one pointed, and the thoughts that have created disturbances become quiet. This is the beginning of the final stage of sadhana, which leads to the ultimate attainment,’ Swami Muktananda.

Have you read our post about the throat chakra here? And the rest of the chakras here?

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Why You Should Never Bring Your Phone to Yoga

Be honest – what’s the first thing you do when you leave the tranquility of your yoga class? If you said check your phone, you’re not alone. At one time, we’re all guilty of this bliss breaking habit.  yoga phone

If you think about what your smart phone symbolises, what it holds, what it can do, the reach it has then everytime you pick up your phone within seconds of leaving the mat, you’re telling yourself that it’s IMPERATIVE that you connect back into that world.

The hour or two that you are in a yoga class is a dedication to the self. It’s a time when you are saying ‘yes self, I am giving you my all right now – all my focus, attention and effort’. And then we leave class and abruptedly retract that dedication via our actions.

Consider the benefits of holding that peace and stillness achieved in class or practise if it were to extend into every area of your life and not just for those minutes you spend on the mat. Imagine the richness that would permeate your job, time with family and friends and even your relaxation time alone. How often has your “yoga buzz” been destroyed by checking your phone after class and realising there is an urgent email that will cause you more work when you hit the office first thing in the morning? Or that there are people complaining on Facebook?

It would be hypocritical and remiss of us to demand you never connect with your phone but we’d like to remind you of the value of using it mindfully and allowing yourself time to have breaks away from it.

There are lots of benefits of having a mobile device that can connect to all areas in your life that lives in your pocket and sometimes, we’d be lost without them but notice how liberated you feel without having a phone to check or demand your attention. What other things fill that space where your attention is more free and available?

Allow the benefits of the class to be with you in its fullness, in your life (off the mat) and into your next experience. After class your energy channels are open and you may be more present to feelings and sensations. A distraction of the phone will ruthlessly pull you away from this. Often the very reason we seek external sources of distraction is because deep down we don’t wish to deal with what is rising and this isn’t just when it comes to the distraction of our phones.

‘Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.’ Thich Nhat Hanh

Dealing with anything that may be rising within, during or after class requires mindfulness in itself. You can apply this mindfulness by recognising and acknowledging whatever is there for you. Welcome and observe it without judgement and allow it to pass, almost as if you were watching a movie.

‘Mindfulness is simply being aware of what is happening right now without wishing it were different; enjoying the pleasant without holding on when it changes (which it will); being with the unpleasant without fearing it will always be this way (which it won’t),’ James Baraz

Why not experiment with leaving your phone at home next time you attend class, then it gives you the space between the end of class and arriving home to settle and enjoy that peace and stillness that you have worked hard to achieve. Or even better make an agreement with yourself to not turn your phone on until thirty minutes after class. If thirty minutes is too daunting, why not start with five and build up from there?

And don’t forget to share with us how you find this experiment!

When our pain is held by mindfulness it loses some of its strength… mindfulness recognizes what is there, and concentration allows you to be deeply present with whatever it is. Concentration is the ground ofhappiness. Thich Nhat Hanh

Did you miss our chakra series posts? Don’t forget that you can also meet our staff here.

Patanjali: the legend

Legend has it that Patanjali compiled and codified the yoga sutras. The yoga sutras (sutra translating as thread) is considered the fundamental text for practising and living yoga and not just in the sense of asana but with regards to the full eight limbs. Those limbs being yama, niyama, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi. Remember the recent post about one of the limbs, the yamas? yoga adelaide

Patanjali compiled 196 sutras or concise aphorisms that are essentially an ethical blueprint for living a moral life and incorporating the science of yoga into your life. Although no one is sure of the exact time when Patanjali lived and wrote down his sutras, it is estimated this humble physician (who became one of the world’s greatest and most well known sages) roamed India somewhere between 200 BC and 200 AD and that his birthplace was a celestial abode called Ilavrita-Varsha and his mother being Sati and father, Angiras (one of the ten sons of Brahma).

The verses are interconnected and all related together, hence their namesake of sutra (thread). ‘The scripture is regarded as the most precise and scientific text ever written on yoga,’ Four Chapters on Freedom.

He was said to be able to communicate since birth and was believed to be an incarnation of the mythical endless serpent, Ananta. The tradition runs that upon his birth he made known things past, present and future, showing the intellect and penetration of a sage while yet an infant. He married Lolupa, whom he found in the hollow of a tree on the north of Sumeru, and is said to have lived for many, many years. It was also claimed that he once reduced a group of Bhotabhandra residents to ashes by fire from his mouth after being insulted by them.

It was believed he had a variety of talents that included being a physician, dancer, medical intuitive, philosopher and grammarian. There are many uncertainties and skepticism shrouding what Patanjali actually achieved. Given his suspected parentage, he was an accomplished dancer that created classical traditions of dance styles still performed today in India and he is regarded as the patron saint of dance but it is a given in the yogic community that he was the one to package up yoga in the sutras we follow in most yoga lineages today. Although he did not create yoga he was instrumental in bringing it to the world.

Did you know? Patanjali can be roughly translated as ‘falling from heaven’, ‘offering sacred knowledge coming from the heart’ or ‘falling into folded hands’. Read more here.

Some people even purport that Patanjali also wrote a treatise on Ayurvedic medicine with a focus on diagnosis of disease and drugs, the structure and function of the human body and its fitness and its aesthetics.

Often called the “father of yoga”, there is still much mystery surrounding Patanjali and some facts and information have been misinterpreted or diluted over the years, not too dissimilar to that of another legend of man we may be familiar with: Jesus and his teachings.

 

 

 

 

Get to Know Your yogafusion – Pradeep Teotia

yoga adelaide

Meet the visiting instructor – Pradeep Teotia (Libra)

When did your yoga journey start? And why did you start?

I think I was six or seven years old!

Describe your first class?

Amazing, crazy and very energetic and peaceful.

adelaide yoga
What led you to decide to become a yoga instructor?

I wanted to share my passion with others.

What do you find most rewarding about being a yoga instructor?

Seeing change in people’s lives.

Describe where yoga has helped you overcome a challenge in life.

It has made me more aware!

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