Reduce Tamas & Rajas. Cultivate more Sattva.

Reduce Tamas & Rajas.  Cultivate more Sattva.

Another Shiva Power class, on our retreat to Maui last week! Come into stillness. Concentrate. And breathe. Practicing asana reduces Rajas. Practicing pranayama reduces Tamas. Practicing concentration increases Sattva. This is Samkhya Yoga. This is Ashtanga Yoga. Reduce Tamas and Rajas. Cultivate more Sattva. Make the mind fit for concentration and ready for the higher Raja Yoga practices of concentration, meditation, and Samadhi. Ommmmm!

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Samkhya Philosophy.

Samkhya Philosophy.

We covered a lot of philosophy this past week in my 200hr Shiva Yoga RYT Teacher Training Program. Here’s some pics from one of the afternoon’s where we looked specifically at Samkhya philosophy and Samkhya’s major contributions — the theory of the 3 gunas and the theory of the 25 principles. In order to understand the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and the journey inward to experience the pure Consciousness part of yourself it is essential that you understand Samkhya philosophy. There are many passing references to Samkhya in the Yoga Sutras. Without understanding Samkhya philosophy it is easy to get lost when studying Classical Yoga philosophy and the Yoga Sutras. Samkhya philosophy is sometimes called the foundation of Classical Yoga philosophy. Some scholars even refer to yoga as the practice of Samkhya philosophy. 

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Samkhya Philosophy - Tamas, Rajas & Sattva

Samkhya Philosophy - Tamas, Rajas & Sattva

I’ve been talking a lot in class this past week about how Samkhya philosophy informs our yoga practice.  

Samkhya philosophy is all about numbers.  This philosophy is very mathematical and very scientific in how it views the world. 

According to Samkhya philosophy -- the world is divided into two things:  Consciousness and Nature. 

Samkhya calls these two things the Purusha (consciousness) and Prakrti (Nature).  It’s important that we understand this because it informs Classical Yoga (the yoga of Patanjali) and our practice of going inward and quieting the mind in meditation, using the tool of Samadhi to achieve deeper states of meditation, and all of the Astanga Yoga preparation practices which encourage single pointed focus for this purpose. 

Why do we want to go inward?  Yoga and Samkya teach that it is in the stillness where you can experience the pure consciousness part of yourself, the light within you. 

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