27 October 2018

Morning class - Blue group

Swamiji conducted the hatha yoga class with the theme of simplicity. The asanas were taught from the most simple variation to a slightly more complex variation.

Swami Prembhava gave Sri Swami Satyananda's original yoga nidra.

Swami Yogamaya conducted the practice of antar mouna. As part of the swadhyaya component, Swami Yogatirtha read from the Yoga Chakra series on the yama of bhava shuddhi, purity of intention, and Swami Yogamaya conducted a corresponding meditation.

Afternoon class - Red group

Swami Vedantananda gave a practice on happiness.

Sannyasi Sivadhara read from the Yoga Chakra series of books.

Rishi Arundhati gave one of Sri Swamiji's original yoga nidras.

Swami Vedantananda conducted the practice of kaya sthairyam with the component of vision pratyahara.

Swami Shivadhyanam conducted the hatha yoga class.


Pratyahara – Focus of the Second Chapter

In the Munger Yoga Symposium, the focus has been on developing the state of pratyahara. This is one of the first foundations of the second chapter. The foundation of the first chapter was asanas, pranayamas, and all the practices that you have done so far. The focus of the second chapter and one of the starting steps is pratyahara. Why pratyahara? Because pratyahara is the least understood of the practices and the most important of the practices after asanas.

The importance of asana in your mind is high up in the heavens. Pranayamas come a few stages down. Yoga nidra goes beyond heaven and meditation comes at par with pranayama. This was the first chapter. In the second chapter, to develop the yoga vidya awareness and to experience yoga, creating a positive transformation, a qualitative change in our life, we need to perfect pratyahara. Why pratyahara? Because pratyahara deals with the mind.

Imagine the deep, inner psychological stress that you don't know exists within you; it is the clearing of it which happens through pratyahara. Therefore, you have to make the effort to remain aware, develop your awareness, expand outwards first. Then focus, come back in. By expanding outwards, enlarge the scope of awareness and after the awareness has been extended fully, then you can focus and concentrate in the state of enlarged awareness.

I gave the example of being able to see the whole body. As I see your whole body, I can focus on your little finger but I am seeing the whole body, however, my focus, my concentration is on that little finger. I am seeing the bigger picture and I am also seeing the smaller picture. Awareness is the bigger picture, concentration is the smaller picture, the focused picture.

Pratyahara is the doorway to the second chapter. That is the focus of the training to give you a glimpse of what is to come. None of the practices that we have been able to do together have been the complete practice, yet different points and hints have been given.

Evening program

Members of the Yuva Yoga Mitra Mandal, yoga fellowship for the youth, gave a beautiful performance of yogasana to the theme of finding balance. By connecting to nature and learning lessons from nature we can all derive great benefit for body and mind and learn to live in peace and harmony.

The group of Manganiars from Rajasthan delighted all with a second evening of devotional music.