LOVE AND YOGA
LOVE AND YOGA…7 Yoga Postures That Can Teach Us About Romantic Love
The body knows how to love. We were born with that delightful gift. Yet sometimes we forget this innate embodiment. Fortunately, when we practice yoga, deep body-knowing awakens our wisdom, and we “remember” being loved and being loving.
Yoga, which means union of mind, body and soul, and ultimately our oneness with the Divine, can rekindle our connection to self and others in a profoundly benevolent way.
Every Yoga pose leads us from the physical to emotional, mental, and esoteric levels of concentration toward meditation; the crowning glory of yoga that reveals bliss. This pathway to bliss is the same pathway to love.
Here are 7 yoga postures and how they enhance our ability to love!
You stand straight as a conduit between heaven and earth. You stand in your truth. You are here now. You belong here. You are sacred.
Love Note: This is how you allow your lover to see you. You are here now in truth. You are present to love.
Mantra: I am present to the love that exists everywhere and especially between us.
2. Adho Mukha Svanasana…Downward Facing Dog
This forward bending posture allows us to stretch the back of the body while looking inward and also bowing down to earth as it supports us.
Love Note: The suggestion of bowing down to your loved one is an act of reverence for the relationship. We bow to the sacred relationship.
Mantra: I honor the relationship of love. I allow myself to be vulnerable and flexible. I seek support for these qualities as I surrender to honor my loved one and myself.
3. Urdhva Mukha Svanasana…Upward Facing Dog
This rising up pose strengthens the spine, tones the internal organs, expands the chest and opens the heart.
Love Note: Opening the heart is essential to love. We cannot remain in the mind only. When we relate to our love with an open heart we relate heart-to-heart…not mind-to-heart, which can cause judgement and separateness. The etymology of the word courage means heart. It takes courage to open the heart with love.
Mantra: I lift up to open my heart. I lift up to see what is above me. I look to my loved one in reverence knowing that divine love resides within them as well as within me.
4. Ustrasana..,.Camel Pose
This yoga pose opens the heart further and involves bending backwards while receiving the support of your spine.
Love Note: Be totally open and present to your own open heart. Allow yourself to show this openheartedness to your loved one in trust. Honor your deepest feelings.
Mantra: It is safe to open my heart fully. My heart knows how to give and receive in balance.
5. Balasana…Child’s Pose
Child’s pose offers a moment of rest in the fetal position. The body in a pre-verbal state of rest and growth allows the head to touch the ground. Here the mind can let go of any thoughts to let them enter deep earth for transformation.
Love Note: Our childlike innocence is not ignorant. Our childlike innocence embraces what is before us in wonder. The etymology of the word innocence means “not harming.”
Mantra: In my innocence and child-like wonder I do no harm to myself or my loved one. My inner child loves the inner child of my loved one, and we share playful joy together.
6. Ardha Matsyendrasana…Spinal Twist
Sometimes called Half Lord of the Fishes pose, this spinal twist improves posture, stimulates the digestive tract and offers deep cleansing of the breath.
Love Note: Mythological texts tell a story that Matsyendra, thrown into the ocean, was swallowed by a fish. Within the fish, he practiced yoga. When he happened to swim by a riverbank, he heard Lord Shiva telling his wife Parvathi, the secrets of yoga. Eventually Shiva transformed Matsyendra back into a man, and he became a great yoga teacher. There are many versions of this story…all leading to transformation.
Mantra: I now allow myself to be transformed by love. I allow any undigested thoughts to be present in my consciousness for transformation. I see all obstacles which might hinder my ability to love. I learn to love by noticing when I am not loving. My perception is widened as I look around. I see the outside world, the inner world, and my loved one’s world with deep awareness. My breath takes love in and out.
7. Savasana…Corpse Pose
Maranasati means mindfulness of death, or death awareness in Buddhist meditation. The word Samadhi in Sanskrit connotes a state of original balance…Supreme Consciousness. How would awareness of death in corpse pose lead us to a meditation of Supreme Consciousness?
Love Note: There is a guided meditation I love to teach while my students are in Corpse Pose…Savasana, at the end of class. In this meditation I slowly guide them to release the body…skin, muscles, tendon and ligaments, all internal organs and finally the skeleton until they experience themselves as pure energy. In the state we welcome Divine love and healing. Then we call back all the body parts healthier, more balanced, stronger, vital and renewed. Experiencing the Self without a body allows for a re-visioning of the self. It allows us to see and feel the body with a new reverence. It grants us the ability to appreciate our body as a spiritual and physical vehicle of love on this plane of existence. It makes us aware of the gift of life.
Mantra: I continually learn to love and be loved. Is allows my Self to dissolve into Divine Love.
Namaste: The Divine light in me sees the Divine light in you, and we are One!
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