Kundalini Yoga: Kriya for Detoxification

practice yoga Aug 28, 2020

January is the perfect time for detoxifying the body, mind, and spirit! With winter upon us, our bodies are naturally slowing down, and perhaps we indulged a bit too much over the holidays! We can start to cleanse and rebuild with Kundalini Yoga kriyas & meditations.

For detoxifying, we love this kriya, and recommend practicing this one for at least 40 days!

Kundalini Yoga: Kriya for Detoxification

 

We detoxify continuously throughout life. We process food, thoughts, and all forms of energy. When that flow is continuous and clear, we are steady and flexible. The trouble is that we accumulate more than we process. We become weighted down under the ash of metabolism and the remnants of old emotions. This set systematically moves the energy of the body and mind to keep you light and vitalized. ~ Gurucharan Singh Khalsa


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1. Lie down on your back with your legs straight. Your heels are together and your toes point upward. Keeping your heels together, spread your...

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Kundalini Yoga For Tolerance and Compassion

practice yoga Aug 28, 2020

by Jenni Sells

Our ability to connect from our hearts with compassion and to empathize with what others are going through is part of what makes us human. Difficult times are much more manageable when we have loved ones around that have compassion for what we are experiencing.

As busy as life can be, and as infuriating as some circumstances are these days, it is easy to get cynical. Sometimes it feels impossible to keep our hearts open under the weight of the world’s problems. It’s easier to shut down, to turn off the part of us that feels so deeply all the pain and anguish.

Rather than approaching people who are struggling from a place of compassion, we might start to believe that people are going through a hard time because they brought it on themselves, or because of their karma, or because of bad decisions that they made. We might also start to believe that there is nothing we can do to help. But tolerance for other people’s differences, that compassion for...

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Mudra For Trust

mudra Aug 28, 2020

by Dr. Ramdesh

Vajrapradama Mudra

(Mudra for Unshakable Trust)

It’s so easy to lose trust.  Maybe your significant other cheated on you recently or your co-worker stole your ideas.  Maybe your issues of trust go further back, to your childhood, and your parents betrayed you in unloving ways.  Maybe you prayed and it felt like you got no answer.

Little by little, your heart hardened. Step by step, the trusting, open, real YOU was replaced by someone who is just waiting for the bottom to drop out.  Maybe you lost trust in other people, the world, and God.  Maybe the only thing you can trust is yourself, or maybe you distrust yourself most of all.

Here’s the problem with lack of trust:  the only person you hurt is you.  In order to remain distrustful, you have to close your heart off to the good that exists in the world.  It’s a protective, defensive measure, but it creates a closed heart and a block to energy flow within you....

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Pranayama For The Immune System

practice pranayama Aug 28, 2020

by Liz McCollum Lord

Pranayama is an integral part of the yoga practice, but one that I don’t often think about.  Most kriyas and meditations incorporate some type of breathing because of its numerous benefits.  Somehow though, I had allowed myself to forget the powerful benefits that just a few minutes of focused pranayama can provide.  Thankfully at Sat Nam Fest, I attended two classes that brought pranayama back to the forefront of my mind!  Akasha closed out his class by teaching Breath of Ten, which is a wonderfully healing breath.  And in the Ayurvedic class with Jai Dev Singh, we experienced several intense breathing practices that really shifted my energy drastically.

With that in mind, I came back home with pranayama on my mind.  Unbeknownst to me at the time, this past month would end up being one of the most stressful months I’ve had in a long time.  Many times I asked myself what more could possibly go wrong, only to be...

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Science of Pranayama: Shortcut to Manifesting your Intentions

pranayama Aug 28, 2020

by Julie Eisenberg

Kundalini Yoga places a lot of emphasis on breathing, or pranayama. There are many different types of pranayama in Kundalini Yoga: long deep breathing, breath of fire, breath retention (in or out), and alternate nostril breathing are some of the most familiar. But there are many other ways of breathing: segmented breath, alternate breath channels (nose or mouth), and sitali pranayam (over a rolled tongue) are just some examples of breathing techniques that are regularly practiced in Kundalini Yoga. (For a full explanation of yogic breathing, see the book Praana Praanee Praanayam.) 

Breath is life; without it, we cease to function in our physical body. But the power of pranayama is also a way to manifest our intentions.  We can use breath to change our energy level, boost our mood, and overcome stress. All it takes is a little training in how the different types of pranayama work!

Here’s an example. Pay...

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Simple Acts of Service

service Aug 28, 2020

by Lee Harrington

When natural disasters strike, I’ve noticed that people tend to respond in one of two ways. For many, the first reaction to the tragedy is to feel a sense of hopelessness or helplessness. Such people make a statement, along the lines of: “There is nothing I can do.” For others, the first reaction is to ask a question: “How can I help?” There is no right or wrong here, by the way.Sometimes making an absolutist statement versus asking a question is simply an indication of where we are on our path at that particular moment in time. “Live the questions,” the poet Rilke once wrote. But the truly enlightened ones—and the advanced practitioners—will live the answers as well: “I can help by [fill in the blank].”  This is why we practice. So that, when tragedy strikes, we become the answer.

Of course, giving money can be an option. But what if you simply do not have spare funds at this particular...

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Unplugging: Tips on Overcoming Technology Addiction

addiction Aug 28, 2020

by Kathryn Livingston

Not long ago, I was in New York City on a glorious spring day. I happened by Washington Square Park, where thankfully, a number of children were enjoying the playground equipment. However, most of the adults all around the park were looking down. Clearly, our addiction to cell phones and electronic devices is growing at an alarming rate. Children are suffering the effects as well; later, at a restaurant, I noticed that the kids at the table next to mine were on electronic game-playing devices while the parents chatted on their cellphones.

I've heart it called “Information Dementia Syndrome.” I learned this recently when I took a course with Mukta Kaur Khalsa, PhD, Director of SuperHealth, the Yogic Science to Break Habits and Addictive Behaviors. “It’s a very unique term,” she observes, “When the psyche gets bombarded with too much information, you basically blow a fuse.” Stress, information overload, and being...

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Yoga For Beginners: What Is Gyan Mudra?

beginner mudra Aug 28, 2020

by Dr. Ramdesh

What is Gyan Mudra?

Gyan Mudra is a powerful mudra (or hand position) practiced for thousands of years by yogis that brings peace, calm, and spiritual progress.  It relates to the planet Jupiter. Artistic depictions of great spiritual masters such as Guru Nanak, Christ, Buddha, and Mahavir are all shown regularly with this hand position.  In addition to its many spiritual qualities, Gyan Mudra has wide and varied health benefits, making it one of the most practiced mudras of all.

How to do Gyan Mudra:

Connect the thumb and the forefinger (tip to tip, not tip to nail, which is another “active” variation of Gyan Mudra). The other fingers are straight but relaxed. Pressure between the thumb and forefinger is light.

Why do Gyan Mudra?

Gyan Mudra does many things.  Stimulating the root chakra, it eases tension and depression.  It relates to expansion and knowledge.  It is extremely calming and brings the practitioner spiritual openness...

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Yoga for Beginners: Why You Need to Sit Up Straight

beginner Aug 28, 2020

by Sohan Kaur

Simply put it’s all about flow. The flow of the breath, the flow of spinal fluid, and the flow of energy are all affected by posture when we sit down for meditation or to do an exercise. Think of the spine as a hose. When there’s a kink, the water flow is cut off or limited. This is similar to what happens during a meditation or posture when the energy tries to flow, but the effect is diminished.

Breathe Freely

A straight spine allows the lungs and diaphragm to move more smoothly at full range. When the tailbone tilts towards the earth, the shoulders pull back, and the chest rises. The lungs and diaphragm have extra space to move freely while the abdomen can be relaxed.

Give it a try! Hunch your shoulders forward and down. Experiment to see how much air will fill your lungs. Now as you sit up and bring the shoulders back while raising the chest, notice the movement of your diaphragm. Which was easier for you?

The Spine

When the vertebrae are aligned, the...

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How Is Yoga Beneficial to People on a Path of Recovery From Addiction?

addiction lifestyle Aug 28, 2020

by Tommy Rosen

I come from a background of severe drug addiction (alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, freebase, heroin) and now have over 23 years of continuous recovery. My entry point for the profound shift in thinking that has taken place within me was Hazelden in Minnesota where I spent 40 days or so back in 1989. I went on to embrace the 12 Steps and they worked for me… to the point they are meant to work. The 12 Steps are really the first step to successful sustainable recovery, and they are immediately rendered more powerful when viewed in this manner rather than as a be-all end-all solution to anything that life throws your way.

I tell people that my story is really a story of recovery within recovery. I first got sober and began a “one day at a time” approach to abstinence from drugs and alcohol. I worked with a sponsor to go through the 12 Steps and my life got significantly better. Yet, I would spend the next 10 years of my recovery still mired in addictive...

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