Yoga Nidra: The Art of Relaxation
Friday, May 24 at 7:15 // $20
What is Yoga Nidra? It means sleep throwing off the burdens.
Yoga Nidra is a guided deep relaxation technique that redirects the constant movement of the brain to reduce tension in minute crooks and crannies of our bodies. The result can de-program the overactive nervous system, decrease anxiety, and improve your nightly sleep patterns – practiced regularly, it can transform one’s nature.
RSVP with Pam: 281 974 9141
Yoga nidra means psychic sleep. It is a state of sleepless sleep where one is on the borderline between sleep and wakefulness. It is a state of inner awareness and contact with the subconscious and higher consciousness.
Yoga Nidra brings a state of deep relaxation and can be used as a preliminary to sleep. Most people do not know how to sleep they fall asleep while thinking over some problem or while prey to some anxiety. In sleep their mind runs on and their body is tense. They wake up feeling lethargic and unrested.
Yoga nidra is a scientific way of sleeping, i.e. practice yoga nidra before sleeping, the sleep will be deep, one will need fewer hours and one wakes up feeling fresh and energetic.
In yoga nidra the physical centers of the body become introverted. This is pratyahara. When the mind is fixed on a center, blood and energy are drawn to it and this causes withdrawal of the senses at that center. In the deep state of relaxation that results, tension is released, the mind becomes clear and thoughts are more powerful. In psychic sleep we contact our inner personality to change our attitude towards ourselves and others. It has been used by yogis since time immemorial and bring them face to face with the inner self.
A resolve or sankalpa is made during the practice. It should be something of immense importance to you. Resolves are short sentences of moral significance to be embedded in the subconscious. This autosuggestion is very powerful. Your sankalpa should be repeated several times during the practice and should be repeated in the yoga nidra for days and days together. Reflect on your resolve immediately after yoga nidra, before opening the eyes.
In practice the mind should be taken up totally with the instructions, you must remain minutely aware throughout. Do not slumber. Do not try to understand or rationalize any of the words.
Practice yoga nidra lying down with the head flat on the floor, in shavasana the body should be straight and the head in line legs slightly apart and arms close to the body. Palms upwards. Lie completely still the body must be totally relaxed with the clothes loose. There should be no physical movement once yoga nidra has begun.
svapna =divine sleep
nidra = sleep (sound:peaceful)
jnana = understanding, remembering
alambanam = to support, think about
va = or
Srivatsa Ramaswami: contemplation of restful sleep or a blissful, divine dream, is the sixth method. (this is said to be the best state a mind can be in-try to hold the feeling).
This is the sixth method mentioned by Patanjali of nine, to remove impediments that keep you from meditating – or keep you from liberation. By practicing these one can come closer to freedom – removing depression, fragmented mind (duka) it helps to come to one pointed mind (ekagrata)
Self-Care for Busy People: A Radical Practice of Compassion
Friday, June 14th at 7:15 PM // $25
Feeling a little burnt out or run down? Or maybe just a little stressed? Take a time out for a breather. We will breathe, relax with some gentle yoga, and practice meditation for clarity and well-being. Instruction will be provided on the basics of meditation: positioning your body, getting grounded, and noticing your breath. Using these techniques, you will learn to deepen your relaxation, adapt better when stress arises, strengthen your connection to your self and others, and approach life with greater joy. We will discuss simple strategies for coping with stress that incorporate diet, sleep, movement, and relaxation. We will discuss the deeper elements of practicing compassion to ourselves through rituals of self care, and design our own self care plan to refer during times of stress. Please bring a yoga mat and a journal, and eat a light meal early if possible.
To register, please contact Stephanie: Stephanie.germaine at hotmail.com or by phone at 832 460 0228
Recent previous events include:
Jeffrey Kripal’s – Authors of the Impossible TEDx Houston talk
March 7, 2013 at Heights School of Yoga
We had a huge turn out for the kick off of Categories of Progressive Thought. Thank you all for your curiosity and sharing in the conversation.
Jeffrey Kripal, Chair of the Department of Religious Studies, Rice University contends that the history of psychical phenomena, is an untapped source of insight into the sacred and by tracing that history through the last two centuries of Western thought we can see its potential centrality to the critical study of religion.
In this first Categories of Progressive Thought presentation Jeff was able to relate only a small portion of his life long research into the paranormal experience. Scott Hulan Jones’ beautiful and dramatic documentary film clips of Authors of the Impossible and Supernature added further scientific in-site to this fascinating and often swept under the rug or culturally tabu topic. As Jeff said they are probably as common as water but people are afraid to talk about it because it is often used fraudulently or simply seen as being too cheesy. Culturally we are more comfortable addressing it through science fiction films or comics.
There is also the idea that as a primordial species we used these heightened states of awareness for survival and in today’s world we simply do not need them as much so we’ve lost the ability to tap in. Often native or religious practices of trance such as chanting and mantra were used to access heightened levels of consciousness that can facilitate a state of ease, telepathy or wonder in the mind. Take the first Yoga Sutra, yoga is the complete restraint of the incessant activities of the mind.
Many of you commented later on how Jeff helped you to understand a few of your personal experiences. As he pointed out, we should take a hard look at our close relationships they can play a pivotal role in decoding some of our manifestations.
The late night discussion moved deeper into the universal consciousness that seems to manifest around decades of story telling, scientists using mind altering drugs to test the suppression of ego and more recently the ever increasing electromagnetic radio waves we are exposed to triggering today’s experiences.
A visit from Swami Bodhichitananda where he taught us about Life with Himalayan Yogis and Yogic Psychology and Subtle Anatomy to achieve Peaceful Mind and Higher Purpose as well as a visit from Craig Williams who taught us about the roots of ancient yoga and Western misconceptions.