This is for those moments when you have the time but lack the motivation to roll out your yoga mat and practice. When we attach a deeper connection to our movement, our practice is transformational to body and mind. This is my favorite group of sanskrit words related to our movement based practice, they serve as a reminder that our asana practice is far more than the 6-pack abs and perfect handstand. Yoga is the best tool for elevating our mind and ushering our bodies and minds toward peace.
Tapas – Glow/heat. It’s what I think of when I picture an olympic runner or ashtanga yogi waking up at 5am with passion and dedication to their sport. To make it onto your mat for a transformative practice you must kindle the fire within. This is a necessary ingredient for transcendence.
Kundalini Shakti – Coiled power. Sometimes depicted as a coiled snake at the base of your spine, this is the spiritual power that must be tapped into for full enlightenment.
Ojas – Vitality or vigor. In sanskirt this term is mostly used to describe the discipline of chastity for adolescent boys. It describes vitality, the subtle energy produced through challenging practice of discipline.
Ananda – Bliss. I’ve actually felt that the word “bliss” can be overused in yoga and marketing but in reality, who doesn’t want to have moments of ananda in their lives? Sometimes the best way to find that is by creating the space and stepping onto our mats.
Dhyana – Meditation. When movement is not what your body needs, trade your mat for your cushion and dedicate your practice time to stillness and quiet.
Svadhyaya – Self study. Look at those moments when you don’t want to get on your mat as a lesson to learn about yourself. Why don’t you want to practice? What is it that your body truly craves? Although not easy, self study is essential for growth.
Shraddha – Faith. Complete belief in what we can see and what we cannot.
A Deeper Connection
The words above serve as a reminder of the tradition that is our yogic path. When motivation to move is lacking, come to these words and choose the one that resonates with you most. Maybe you need more discipline, a slice of bliss, or time for self study. Maybe all we need in any moment is faith; in ourselves, in our bodies, in our ability to manifest through our dedication and movement.