Discover the transformative power of yoga, an ancient practice that nurtures both body and mind.
Learn about Yoga & Wellness
Achieving Holistic Wellness: Nurturing Healthy Minds in Healthy Bodies
Unleash your inner strength as you flow through graceful poses, embracing the beauty of each breath. Feel the gentle rhythm of your body syncing with the universe, cultivating a serene space for meditation. Through yoga, you will unlock the gateway to emotional intelligence, where mindfulness becomes your guiding light. Let go of stress and embrace tranquility as you embark on a journey of self-discovery. Embrace the harmony of body and mind, for in the realm of yoga lies the true essence of vitality and peace.
The 8 Limbs of Yoga
Explore the profound benefits of Yoga through a captivating tree metaphor, and discover its transformative impact on personal and social wellness.
Yoga has eight limbs and is structured around an experience of supreme happiness, clarity and insight – Samadhi “the Fruit of the tree”, the 8th limb of Yoga, represented in my little trees by either beads, rough stones and or a loop. This experience is inherent in every human being and is accessible to everyone. Around this central experience are grouped seven preliminary steps or limbs to prepare and open us to this force of freedom, truth and love that is our true nature.
Every memory, thought, emotion and sensation clouds and covers the freedom inside of us. The yogis discovered that we need to become empty before we can return to our core. This experience of emptiness is called dhyana “the Flowers of the tree”, the 7th limb of Yoga, represented in my little trees by rough stones and or a loop. It is translated as meditation. Experiencing meditation is like becoming aware of the vast empty spaces between our thoughts and desires. Discovering that emptiness brings tremendous freedom as we no longer need to be slaves to our thoughts. Freedom comes when we start to use our mind like a tool rather than it using us as an executor of all its crazy ideas. Instead of identifying ourselves with the mind we recognize we are the self, this presence, this awareness deep within us.
The yogis realized that in order to stay in meditation a very strong focus is needed. It is the nature of the mind to attach itself to every object that arises. You might sit to meditate when suddenly a thought, memory or desire pops up and immediately you are hooked into it. Staying focused on one object of choice without interruption for an extended period of time is single pointed awareness. This is dharana, “the Sap of the tree“, the 6th limb of Yoga, represented in my little trees by the copper wire inside the insulation.
Pratyahara, “the Bark of the tree”, the 5th limb, represented in my little trees by the colored insulation, is turning inside, leading an internally motivated life as opposed to constantly being driven by our senses. Focusing the mind becomes possible when we become detached from our desires and from our aversions.
To release attachment one needs to learn to observe and alter the patterns of our breath. This is perhaps one of the greatest discoveries the yogis made. They recognized that breath and thought move together. If you are angry or depressed or desire something so much that you suffer, you can alter your breath pattern in a specific way and the source of your unhappiness can leave your mind like a cloud disappearing on the horizon. This is the 4th limb of yoga, pranayama, “the Leaves of the tree”, represented in my little trees by the small loops.
Breath control is only possible when the body is light and strong. The yogis found a way to first purify and strengthen the body and nervous system through series of specific postures. These asana, “the Branches of the tree”, comprise the 3rd limb of yoga, represented in my little trees by the long limbs.
Before asana is practiced and to stabilize its benefits certain personal observances are adopted. They form the 2nd limb, nyama, “the Trunk of the tree”, represented in my little trees by the twisted wires and are cleanliness, contentment, simplicity, self-study and the acceptance of a Supreme Being.
Yama, the 1st limb, “the Root of the tree”, represented in my little trees by loops and or hearts at the bottom, instructs us on our social responsibilities and therefore helps us to live in harmony in our communities and pursue our goals. They are non-violence, truthfulness, to not steal, sexual restraints and non greed.
Yoga has changed my life and I encourage each of you to try it. Try does not mean just go one time. It means commit to practicing it for a good while and then make a decision to continue or not. The more you do it and begin to realize the benefits the more you will want to do it.
Thanks to Geno our Yoga Guru for sharing his wisdom and introducing the Tree of Yoga book by BKS Iyengar.
Please visit soon to watch our interview and talk on the topic.