Hatha Yoga Pradipika, a study. part 1/114

Black cow on the beach in Rishikesh.

Namaste! This is the first in a series on one of the great texts of Yoga. 

The Hatha Yoga Pradipika. 

Please join me in this transformative process. 

Read each verse. Meditate upon it. Embrace it into your practice. 

There are 114 verses. Some posts will come with associated meditations or exercises.



Hari Om Tat Sat

Let us begin

(1) Mandala Sloka: Salutations to the primeval Being (Lord Shiva) who is the instructor of the Hathayoga-Yidya (to Parvati), which shines bright like a ladder for one desirous to climb to the heights of the most excellent Rajayoga.

The purpose of hatha Yoga is to give you the knowledge to control the two energies, ‘Ha’ and ‘Tha’ – the Prana and the Apana.

Yoga deals with the mind.

Hatha Yoga is the practical way to control the mind through the control of the prana.

‘Yoga chitta vritti nirodha’ meaning that Yoga controls eventually stops the disturbing thoughts of the mind. Calming the mind to find peace.

Practice: Anuloma Viloma

Anuloma Viloma (pronounced ‘anulom vilom’ is also called Alternate Nostril Breathing. 

Anuloma viloma brings balance and calm to the mind. 

Find a comfortable seat, open your shoulders to facilitate deep breath. Close the eyes or keep a soft, neutral gaze.

Take  two or three soft, yet full, breaths to prepare. 

Using your dominant hand, fold down the index and middle fingers, keep the ring and pinky finger together.

Use the thumb and side of the ring finger to close the nostrils. 

Begin – close the right nostril with your thumb, breathe in through the left nostril.

Close the left nostril with the ring finger, breathe out through the right nostril. 

Breathe in through the right nostril, close the right nostril with the thumb, breathe out through the left nostril.

Breathe in through the left nostril, close the left nostril, breathe out through the right nostril. Continue in this manner for several rounds. Then release your hands and take two or three deep and calm breaths through both nostrils. Observe how you feel. Open the eyes and continue your day in peace.

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