Posts Tagged ‘svadhyaya’

Svadhyaya – Self study & sacred study of the Divine

January 22, 2010

Svadhyaya- Sva means “self’ adhyaya means “inquiry” or “examination”. Any activity that cultivates self-reflection is svadhyaya. It means to intentionally find self-awareness in all our activities and efforts, even to the point of welcoming and accepting our limitations. It teaches us to be centered.  Svadhyaya is about making time to know ourselves better. The more honestly we know ourselves, the more we are able to be in control of our moods and emotions

Some of the primary sacred texts would the The Yoga Sutras by Patanjali, or the Bhagavad Gita

Things you can try to practice

Try writing your feelings down every day in a journal

Try writing a gratitude journal (3-5 things you are grateful for everyday)

Notice how you feel (body, mind & spirit)

Try something meditative:  running, knitting, hiking, playing music, sketching…

Affirmation for Tapas
I am a life long learner
I study to develop my higher self

I gather in truth with other spiritual beings
I live a life of reflection

Journal Writing Exercises:

What ways do you practice Svadhyaya?

How can you further engage in study and reflection?

When do you meet with others of like consciousness?  How often do you do so?

What form of prayer, mantra, or japa do you engage in?  What is it’s effect on you?

Yoga Posture for Svadhyaya:  Balasana, child’s pose

See all the 8 Limbs of Yoga Posts HERE

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The Eight Limbs of Raja Yoga

September 25, 2009

Compiled by Patanjali in the Yoga Sutras, the Eight Limbs are a progressive series of steps or disciplines which purify the body and mind, to enlightenment.

1. Yamas- Restraints
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

The five Yamas are:

Ahimsa: nonviolence, non-harming

Satya: truthfulness

Asteya: nonstealing

Brahmacharya: Moderation

Aparigraha: Non-attachment, Non-possessiveness

2. Niyama– Observances
Self-discipline and spiritual observances.

The five Niyamas are:

Saucha: cleanliness, Purity

Santosa: contentment

Tapas: dicipline, austerity

Svadhyaya: study of the sacred scriptures and of one’s self

Isvara pranidhana: surrender to God, awareness of the divine

3. Asana– evolution of your personal practice
Asanas, the postures practiced in yoga.

View Asana Posts HERE

4. Pranayama– Breathing
Breath control

View Pranayama Posts HERE

5. Pratyahara– Drawing senses inward (prepares us for dharana)
Withdrawal or sensory transcendence, the conscious effort to draw our awareness away from the external world and outside stimuli.

6. Dharana– concentration (prepares us for Dhyana)
dealing with the distractions of the mind itself.

7. Dhyana- Meditation or contemplation (leads to Samadhi)
The uninterrupted flow of concentration.

View Meditation Posts HERE

8. Samadhi– Superconsciousness
One with everything

See all the 8 Limbs of Yoga Posts HERE

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