In Amrit Yoga you learn to integrate all limbs of Ashtanga Yoga from the very beginning. Even through the earlier stages, the attention is on the practice of physical postures, you begin to cultivate the internal focus that includes pratyahara and dharana. In later stages, you deepen your practice by integrating pratyahara (withdrawal of the senses), dharana (concentration) and dhyana (meditation), the componets of Raja Yoga. These seven principles and the techniques associated with them are what allows the practitioner to practice the totality of ashtanga Yoga in one wholistic practice. The principles outlined below and the simultaneous practice of all limbs of yoga are unique to Amrit Yoga.
Intention (Yamas and Niyamas) A clear intention is made in the form of a prayer before moving into the sequence.
Alignment (Asana) Anchoring the mind in the precise and proper form and technique of each asana using press points and energetic extensions. This will bring strength, flexibility, and nadi shuddi (purification of the nerves)
Breath (Pranayama) Breath reflects our inner state, by changing our breath, we can change our internal experience. Specific willful breathing supports nadi shuddi. Conscious use of breath can pull us out of mental reaction and bring us back into pure body experience.
Inward Focus (Pratyahara) Feeling body awareness. Once a student knows the fundamentals of correct form and execution of each asana they can begin to focus on feeling the body sensation in the asana and in between poses. Awakening the feeling center is a key component of Amrit Yoga.
Concentration (Dharana) Becoming fully engaged and absorbed in sensation in an unbroken stream of attention. At this stage we use body sensation as the focus point of meditation. Through focusing one-pointedly on sensation without labeling or choosing for or against we are prepared to enter into expanded meditative awareness. This focus is also the first tangible step in Self Observation.
Meditative Awareness (Dhyana) In execution of and release in between asana, there is the opportunity to be in the entire experience-fully aware without judgement. This is the experience of witness/meditation-which embraces everything and excludes nothing from our field of awareness. This is where we practice Swadyaya-self observation without judgement.
Integration (Samadhi) Integration takes place as we continue our meditative awareness through the second half of the pose in which we allow the energy released in the first half of the pose to grow and expand and be drawn upwards to the Third Eye- the point where all seemingly conflicting forces are resolved in the field of unity. When we disappear, sacred presence appears. This is true integration. Encountering resistances in the body, using the principles outlined above, has a therapeutic effect, returning body and mind to balance and integration.
Please join us for the following Amrit Yoga classes each week:
Amrit Yoga Level 1
Fridays at 9am
Amrit Yoga Level 2
Tuesdays at 9am and Wednesdays at 6pm
Amrit Yoga Nidra Meditation
Thursdays at 12pm and Fridays at 11am