Sunday, 13 December 2015

On the road to bliss - The koshas Part 4

Yogis think of the body as being composed of 5 layers or sheaths, arranged one inside the other like the layers of an onion. The yogic path to self-realisation involves moving in through the layers to reach the innermost layer, bliss, the part of us that is divine.

The forth layer is the wisdom layer, vjnanamaya kosha. This is your awareness body, your insight or intuition. Think of this kosha as the observer. It does not get involved with your 'monkey mind' (see ''Calm the 'monkey mind', boost your energy''- but at the same time, it is fully aware of what is going on in your mind. In other words your awareness body is able to 'stand back' and view your thoughts from an objective perspective. You can access this layer through asana practice, pranayama, meditation, mudra and chanting ('Chanting for beginners'-  

When you have accessed this layer, you will become more aware of sensation in your asana practice, knowing how far to move into any given pose to ensure you receive the most benefit from that pose.  You will also practice your asanas without getting attached to the outcome so that your asana practice becomes a journey of self-discovery rather than striving to attain 'pretzel' shapes with your body. When you have accessed this layer also you are able to tune into the subtle effects of your asana and breath practice.

You will notice that your meditation practice changes too as you begin to access this kosha. You will no longer get involved with the 'story' of any thoughts that arise but are able to view them as an observer.  You will not judge your thoughts but you will be able to let them go, like clouds passing by.

Mudras can direct the flow of prana to this kosha. Try jnana mudra to cultivate wisdom. Lightly touch the first finger and thumb together and have your palms facing up.  For more on mudras, please see 'Using mudras in your yoga practice'-

There is also a video on my YouTube Channel on this kosha. Please see-The Koshas 4-Vijnanamaya Kosha- 

If you missed the rest of this series the links are below:-

On the road to bliss - The Koshas Part 1-

On the road to bliss - The Koshas Part 2-

On the road to bliss - The Koshas Part 3-

Janet x

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