Atman is Brahman
Yoga is a Sanskrit word for “Union”. One of the stories goes that we breathe in the soul with the first breath we take as babies. And we breathe out this life with the last breath we exhale before the body goes. Yoga sets a belief that the soul lives on because it is immortal – Atman survives. Atman is the Universal energy which every soul is part of. The ancient concept of Yoga – a practice of over 5000 years – is to unify the individual Self with the Higher Self. This can mean something different to every practitioner but in theory, Yoga believes that the physical body serves as a vessel to carry our souls for one lifetime.
"Every class we breathe and move and meditate" - Larry Schultz
The Chakras or “The Wheels of energy” are located along the spine of the physical body and associated with the specific qualities. The Yoga postures can nurture, tune, clear and align each Chakra and their connection to each other and to our daily lives.
When we practice it is said that Kundalini, the (dormant) Cosmic Energy at the base of the spine is awakened. Kundalini energy travels through the spine to the crown of the head and to union with the Universal energy. The experience of this connection is often felt as a mini and major transformation during and after the Yoga & meditation practice. We might enter to a class with worries written all over our bodies - but leave with feeling much relief, in peace & with harmony.
"Uniting with 7 Chakras" Intro
The first chakra, Muladhara at the base of the spine, is where the cosmic energy resides. This "Root chakra" is our connection to the Earth, related to standing and balancing poses as well to seated asanas. The Warrior poses invites us to "Stand firm and tall on our own two feet" - on the mat & on our daily lives, and to stay connected to what is Real. The second chakra, Svadisthana located by the sacrum, associated to hip opening poses and arm balance poses that are to awaken the energetic lift "The Flying Bird" inside of us that tunes our resonation Higher. It's our creative force, inviting us to "Honor oneself". The third chakra Manipura, near by in the solar plexus is the center of our own empowerment and strength.
When people started to notice the relaxed and lighter change in Larry Schultz, the founder of It's Yoga, they were asking "Were you just on a vacation?" He answered: "Well... I practice Yoga." or "You look good, have you been on a diet?" - He repeated: "It's Yoga!" and continued that if he would establish a Yoga school, he would call it "It's Yoga", because that's what he is saying all the time to people. It is Yoga!
"Never let your chest touch your stomach" Larry also said
The fourth chakra of the Heart, Anahata at the chest area is on our emotional center. Teaching us to have "Trust oneself" and to lift and lean back on that trust. The upper three chakras, Vishuddha in the throat "Speaking the truth", Anja at the third eye "Seeing only the truth", and Sahasrara at the crown of the head "Connecting to the truth" are more subtle and hold lifetime lessons for one who is curious and willing to receive them. When Kundalini energy travels from Muladhara to Sahasrara chakra through a subtle energy channel along the spine, one can feel the peacefulness that is rising from deep inside.
"Asana is not a particular pose, but a state of mind." - It's Yoga Teacher Training manual
In every The Rocket® class we move through the spine, bending it forward & backward, from side to side and setting it upside down. The practice is designed to open up the joints of the body, so that we can experience mobility, strength and flexibility not just on the mat and in our bodies - but also in our minds & daily lives. Yoga is there to support us to find that centerline that brings calmness to our minds and breath (LIFE) to our physical, spiritual and energetic bodies.
// See our earlier blog text about The History of Ashtanga Yoga
"Truth is one. Paths are many." - Mahatma Gandhi
Yoga is not a religion that requires us to believe in a God or a higher power of teacher or master outside. Instead, Yoga teaches us to connect to our Inner guidance that is speaking with the kind and loving voice.
(It's) Yoga teaches us that we are not our thoughts, nor our minds / our bodies. We are (so much) greater than any form and at the same time this infinite power unites us in- and outside with people and world around us. Yoga teaches us to control our breath and to free our minds to listen to that intuitive voice within, that is always in peace & in harmony. And knowing that when we turn within - it will meet us where we are, as we are. Yoga is a science that aims to bring us back to the Inner connection.
Happy post International Day Of Yoga (June 21st) for everyone! Everyday is a new Yoga day and We are in this together.
Keep on practicing! May we all be happy & free,
It's Yoga! Namaste