So as many of you may, or may not, already know…I practice yoga. I am self-taught and definitely somewhere between beginner and intermediate, but I am forever increasing in knowledge and skill daily. 🙂
Yoga is such an amazing practice, for your mind, body, and spirit. It has numerous positive effects on all areas of your being, helping you to become more balanced in every regard. Each pose not only targets a certain area of focus physically, but also has history and spiritual implications tied along with it as well. It is important to be aware of the spiritual connections to each motion as a means of setting your intention for each step of your practice, and thereby getting the full benefit of the poses.
Which leads me to the Sun Salutation. Its more or less a sequence of poses and, though done by those at all levels, it is vastly popular among many beginner yogis. Rightfully so, as it is a delicious mind, body, & spirit warm-up and pretty do-able for those at any level. As I said before, it is important to a full and proper practice, to know the history and spiritual importance of each pose/sequence you do. Being as though the Sun Salutation is so popular and perfect for beginner yogis, I think its a marvelous place to start in making sure we are fully informed. So here’s a little info and I hope it proves useful! ❤
THE SUN SALUTATION
The original Hindu name is Surya Namaskar, Surya meaning “the sun” and Namaskar coming from the root word namas which means “to bow or “to adore”.
Hindus have revered the Sun for thousands of years. They see the Sun as the physical and spiritual heart of our world and the creator of all life itself….an image of, and pathway to the divine.
The sequence begins and ends with a mudra (joined-hands) at the heart center. This is no coincidence as the Hindus see the heart as our own “inner sun”, the seat of our consciousness and higher wisdom. The mind can be corrupted by viparyaya (misconception), but only the heart can know the truth.
The sequence consists of the following basic poses (but poses can be varied for increased difficulty): Mountain Pose, Upward Salute, Forward Fold, Lunge, Plank Pose, Four-Limbed Staff Pose, Cobra Pose, Downward Dog
…ending back in Mountain Pose with hands joined over heart center.
Here’s a video that shows a good visual example of the Sun Salutation in action.
If you practice yoga or are planning to start practicing yoga, I would definitely suggest doing Sun Salutations and taking this knowledge into your practice! I don’t know about you guys, but doing the sequence with this information in mind, definitely makes me feel even more connected and inspired, in motion.
The Sun is within you, spiiirits, and so is the truth!
☮ A.T. ☮