Yoga        Union      योग

Yoga is a process of eliminating the unnecessary

Yoga is applicable to all people, regardless of age, locale, race, religious belief, or era.  Yoga starts with the premise that everything I need is already within me.  True happiness is a matter of weeding away the unnecessary and remembering who I truly am.


Yoga offers technology for healing at five layers

Yoga is often practiced as a progression from the gross to the subtle.  Most of us begin by identifying with our bodies.  So often we are first attracted to feeling better at the physical level.  I might do a yoga class and feel good - like I got a good workout, yet feel energized rather than exhausted.  Finding better physical health is important.  In addition, a yoga class can touch upon layers deeper than just the physical body.


(1) Physical body  “I don’t want to have back pain anymore!”

This layer is improved through the regular practice of yoga postures as movement therapy to overcome repetitive use patterning and neglect.

Yoga postures are movement therapy.  Through the regular practice of these living geometric forms, the movement potential of the body is restored, the senses are polished.  The body becomes supple, graceful, strong and powerful.  Group classes offer meaningful community and an excellent introduction to general posture flows.  It is important to find a class with a pace and movement level suitable to one’s condition.


(2) Energetic-Metabolic Body  “I want to sleep better!”

This layer is improved through the regular practice of specific breathing techniques, and a daily routine in line with the planets, for example, seeing the sunrise and sunset.


Breath tools bring increased vitality, greater awareness of the interior body, accelerate the release of old waste, and allow for a more subtle connection to who I am.  I follow the breath current and learn to feel a bio-electric or magnetic sense of the physical body.  I begin to feel a link between my breath, my emotions and my physical holding patterns.


(3) Mental-Emotional-Relational Body  “I want more peace and serenity!”

This layer is improved through participation in meaningful community rituals, through chanting, through exercises for releasing emotional holding patterns, and through the regular practice of communication techniques that explore relationships to others - modern examples being 12 step, counseling, and non-violent communication.

Communication techniques claim ownership of my mental experience of life by first learning to use “I” statements.  Relationships to others are owned as choices not random occurrences.  Relationships are opportunities for expressing feelings, needs and requests.  Each relationship offers a new opportunity for me to heal old self-limiting patterns of behavior.  There is no power for me in blaming others for what is happening, no power in being a victim.  There is power in speaking truthfully.


(4) Mental-Discerning Intellect Body    “I want to know why I am here on this Earth in a body!”

This layer is improved through the regular study of sacred texts in line with one’s spiritual lineage, and through any luminous study.

The mystic teachings of each spiritual path are equally valid, and there exists a meaningful connection to studying the texts of one’s bloodline.  Healing at this layer involves developing a realistic sense of one’s life purpose, and an ever-expanding sense of identity, beyond material life.  Though all spiritual paths offer mystic teachings, yogic texts are written in Sanskrit, a language built with a felt-sense logic, as perfected as mathematics and as intuitive as music.  The texts of yoga offer practical techniques and tools for attaining higher states of consciousness often difficult to find in the teachings of other spiritual traditions. 

(5) Spiritual Body   “I want to feel connected to the Holy Spirit!”

This layer is essentially awaiting our attention.  We connect to it through absorption in the moment.

Meaningful ritual (like attending church or temple or a sanctuary in nature), chanting, singing, dancing, playing and ultimately meditation offer spiritual EXPERIENCE.  God is not a matter of belief in yoga, God is a matter of experience.  Have a daily experience!  Daily meditation is a medication for all ailments.  We have very limited time here in the body, and at some point the question “what happens when I die?” will come.  Regular meditation practice allows us to feel the answer: the mystery that exists between the breaths.