“I am peeling off the many layers of me…to find myself” Understand the human being and the quest for the true self…

Yoga psychology is both a positive and a normative science. It analyses human personality and its growth, also sets normative ideals and prescribes techniques to achieve such objectives.

The objectives of yoga psychology is the expansion of consciousness and making oneself the master of his/her mind.
A regular practice of yoga enables us to have a disease-free body and keen intellect. 
Yoga presents vivid and sound meditation procedures for the attainment of psychic consciousness through the awakening of *kundalini. 

To accomplish balance is the main goal or mission of yoga psychology, with the Philosophy that any imbalance in the system — physical, psychological or pranic — 

creates disorders and the solution lies in rebalancing it. 

For this process to be successful there is a structure of yogic psychotherapies:

Prarthana– prayer

Mantra sadhana- 
Mantra are chanted in a special language, Gurmukhi, that connects us with the inner sound current which we listen to as we chant.. 

There are 84 meridian points on the roof of the mouth which the tongue stimulates, and they in turn stimulate the hypothalamus which makes the pineal gland radiate. 
When the pineal gland radiates, it creates an impulse in the pituitary gland. 

When the pituitary gland gives impulses, the entire glandular system secretes and a human being obtains bliss. 

Now you will be able to understand why during the begining and closure of a Yoga practice, the chanting of the universal Mantra OM creates cohesion and bliss along the participants.

Sadhana: is a conscious activity to access the unlimited potential of your life through relating to and embracing the most mysterious aspects of our deep self.

Spiritual counseling: type of counseling focused on a person’s spiritual path

Pranayama:
the combination of “pran”, the life force, with “ayama”, meaning expansion. In this sense pranayama expands the life force though all levels of our being, physical, psychological and spiritual. 

Yajna: sacrifice, devotion

Sankirtana: complete glorification of the supreme

Svadhyaya : introspection 

Vrata anushthana

​The Vrata Anushtanas play a pivotal and vital role in developing ones worthiness. 
Basically with the above structure is sustained that yoga psychology as an applied science, provides and encourages rehabilitation for many individual and social problems. 
In the event that develops one’s personality traits and leverage them further to keep him/her happy and as such experience a blissful life.

Yoga philosophy, provides various concepts to help us to understand the nature of the human being. 

One such conceptual system is that of the Pancha Kosha.

The Pancha Kosha ties in very nicely with the experiences that can occur as we deepen in our Meditation practice.  

Although won’t represent an exact picture of Reality – it becomes an effective structure of layering inward from the tangible to the most subtle areas of our being.

  Pancha Kosha concept is a map that gives signposts that show us the way to explore our own Being.

kosha: sheath 

pancha: five

Therefore, it refers to the five layers in the spectrum of our Being from the surface level of our physical body to the depths of the unconscious mind.

At every moment and in every situation, the Koshas determine our thoughts, emotions, words and deeds, performing two (seemingly contradictory) functions:


1.  They are the vehicle and medium through which Consciousness expresses Itself in manifestation. They are ‘Life Fields’ which allow us to live
.

2. They veil or hide the Underlying Consciousness. That is, they cover over our Essential Being

As an analogy, consider the different layers which envelope the tender coconut; the coconut cannot be seen (nor eaten!) unless these protective shells are removed. So it is with the Koshas – they act as barriers. Unless they are pealed away, one cannot directly realize the ‘hidden’ Consciousness – the Core of our Being.

The Koshas correspond to the human personality. 

Without them, we could not live nor express ourselves yet, at the same time, they keep us in a state of spiritual ignorance and prevent us embrace the background Consciousness, where necessary awareness finds easier to hide. 

The purpose of Yoga is to help us gradually understand and explore these different layers and to liberate ourselves from blockages within them.

 In this way, we are progressively freed from pain, fear, suffering and ignorance, thereby becoming more creative and joyful, and enabled to express greater potential in our lives.

Below there is a breakdown of the 5 Sheaths, we feel they exist although are invisible, like an illusion (maya) 

Anna (food) maya Kosha:  our physical layer, depends of food for nourishment. All layers are connected, so if you are not having healthy eating habits, the rest of the layers will suffer collateral damage.

Prana (vital energy)maya Kosha: the vital energy that flows through our body. Our “Breath Body”

Mana (mind) maya Kosha:  represents the intellect, reason and memory. The practice of asanas and pranayamas during yoga, help to quiet the mind.

Vigyana (wisdom)maya Kosha:  the more subtle area of the mind, our intuition and wisdom. When develop consistently an asana practice we might sense unusual feelings of strength and power in a Tree pose (balance posture) as an example.

 Ananda (bliss) maya Kosha: true spiritual bliss at the end of a practice, usually while laying on a mat during savasana ( resting, corpe pose) here is when you start seeing a light within darkness, when rehabilitation starts blooming out like a lotus flower rising from the pond.

 Last but not least:

“Yoga is no judgement, it is your time for journey within…It is your time to feel alive, sheltered and connected”


Namaste                 


Author:    

Glenda Lee Santos; Humble Military and Yoga Warrior; RYT-200 hrs; Criminal Justice, BA; Holistic Practicioner with Foundation in Yoga and Ayurveda.


References:

http://www.harekrishnajapa.com/
http://www.missionrk.com                       
https://www.researchgate.net
http://www.kundalini-yoga-.com
http://careersinpsychology.      

Glosary:  

*kundalini: Is a primal energy, or shakti, located at the base of the spine. It may activate for many reasons, either through practices or spontaneously, and the process has many variables, depending on the intentions, lifestyle, general health, and spiritual orientation of those who experience it.


Courtesy of Semperlee Yoga Corp.


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