Chakra

Chakra colors are usually divided into seven, following the order of the rainbow colors, from red to purple to white.

The colors of the seven main chakras are:

1. Red – first chakra

2. Orange – second chakra

3. Yellow – third chakra

4. Green – Fourth Chakra

5. Blue (sapphire blue or turquoise) – fifth chakra

6. Purple (deep blue) – sixth chakra

7. White (sometimes purple) – seventh chakra

each color reflects a vibration or frequency radiation through the chakra.

The meaning of the red chakra: red is the color of the bottom wheel (first chakra), which symbolizes safety, survival, foundation, and nourishment by the energy of the earth.

If this chakra develops a good friend, he will live and work in peace and contentment and have a sense of security.

If a friend who lives in the first chakra, in addition to the above talents, will only live for survival, only consider survival problems every day, no ambitious goals, no ideals, no understanding of enjoyment.

The meaning of the orange chakra: orange is the color of the reproductive wheel (second chakra); it contains emotion, creativity, sex-related meaning, and is related to water and flow.

A good friend of this chakra development will be particularly friendly and gentle, very human, with good heterosexuality, good interpersonal relationship, enjoy life and live in the present.

But if you are only a friend who lives in the second chakra, in addition to the above talents, you will only focus on emotional life, chasing love, greedy pleasure, and not enterprising.

The meaning of the yellow chakra: Yellow is the color of the navel (third chakra), which symbolizes mental activity, intelligence, personal strength and will.

A good friend of this chakra development will be especially sunny, full of strength, joy, self-confidence, tenacity, and know how to choose.

But if only the friends who live in the third chakra, in addition to the above talents, they will also pay attention to power, like control, conceit or pride, personal willpower is too strong, and they have high demands on others.

The meaning of the green chakra: Green is the color of the heart wheel (fourth chakra), which is related to care, connection, integration, compassion and so on.

This chakra developed a good friend will be particularly compassionate, full of love, gentle, soft, healing ability, able to accept and accommodate each other unconditionally.

But in addition to the above talents, only the friends who live in the fourth chakra will only consider dedication, self-denial, easy compromise, easy thinking, easy to forget.

The meaning of the purple (or deep blue) chakra: purple (or deep blue) is the color of the eyebrow (the sixth chakra); it evokes human intuition, super-perception and inner wisdom.

This chakra develops a good friend, the wisdom will be very high, the object is objectively neutral, the insight is strong, the intuition is strong, and the imagination is rich.

But if only the friends who live in the sixth chakra, in addition to the above talents, they will be too calm, no emotions, no emotional expression, no love for sports, and poor mobility.

The meaning of the white (or purple) chakra: white is the color of the top wheel (seven chakra), which is associated with the universe, spirituality, and consciousness.

This chakra develops a good friend, has a particularly high degree of understanding, is particularly interested in the universe, likes to explore mystery and unknown, has a deep interest in the origin of human beings, has high spirituality, and has a big love heart and cosmic consciousness.

However, if only friends who live in the seventh chakra, in addition to the above talents, they will easily live in spirituality, out of reality, cynical, only pursuing spirituality, not knowing life, derailing from society, and even escaping from reality.

How to relax in yoga pose?

In the class, when I trying to adjusts the student’s style, or during my practice, especially when helping them go deeper into the pose, because of fear, or nerves, or students don’t have confidence in themselves or the teacher, me, the muscles will be tense, and hard to help them.

When the muscles are tense, it constraint the energy in the “air (in the body)” to move smoothly, and the breath is not smooth. The yoga practice is also changed from the nature of the body to the strong, which will lessen happiness experience.

We know that all the techniques of yoga are to achieve the purpose of “control the mind”. The physical tension is controlled by the consciousness of the human being, that is, the tension of the consciousness causes the body to be nervous.

If we try to relax our body during the practice, we actually try to control the mind consciousness – making it from a tense state to a relaxed state.

When the consciousness is relaxed, the body relaxes naturally, the body relaxes, the “air” is unblocked, and the air circulation is smooth, nourishing our internal organs, and the various systems of the body – the body is naturally adjusted effectively, so that the body enters a virtuous cycle.

When we practice yoga, we should concentrate completely on the present, and don’t give extra emotions, such as fear, anxiety, sadness, happiness, etc. The heart should be peaceful, and feel the changes in the body as you breathe. When you practice yoga with control, mind and heart, it becomes a dynamic meditation.

Namate, Yoga!

Meeting is a kind of fate, and fate is so amazing.

Yoga, that is, we met.

When beginning practicing yoga, it is often a pain throughout the body, and there is always a thought of giving up.

Want to be beautiful and beautiful? Stick to it!

Want to improve your temperament? Stick to it!

At this moment, there is always a voice in the heart to encourage myself. In fact, “persevere” is not just a life attitude, but this is paid back by the time.

First of all, the weight has dropped, and the pain in the shoulders has been relieved. These changes are all due to the persistence of yoga.

Secondly, yoga’s meditation, and soothing music also let me slowly relax from the anxiety, and my mind gradually calmed down. These subtle changes in mind and body also benefited me a lot.

The peace of mind and the peace of heart are all due to yoga.

Feeling yoga! Grateful to meet!

Namaste!

Is Yoga a complete Workout?

By Harsh Thakkar

The more I read about it the more evidence I find to support it. Well not sure if I can call it evidence yet, because neither have I seen the “evidence” from my own eyes, nor have I paid any medical labs or scientists to conduct the research on my behalf. Yes, I have spent a few hours googling about it, I will not deny it.

My first few findings were that Yoga has a lot of benefit for toning of your muscles, achieving muscular strength, flexibility, core strength, relaxation, endurance and reduce stress levels. There was also mention of it being good for cardiovascular health and increasing lung capacity. And I did come across a few articles explaining in detail how it really is proven by experiments conducted by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the largest exercise science association in the world, that Yoga can be at par if not better than any other aerobic exercise out there in the world like running, cycling or swimming. Now I still am going to take that with a pinch of salt.

The parameters one can use to define physical fitness is cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, lung capacity(VO2 Max), Flexibility and body composition( percentage of fat, muscles, bones, organs and other non-fat tissues). Yoga has been proven in one way or another to improve all of the above within a span of 8 weeks of practice (2-3 times per week) in all age groups irrespective of previous chronic health ailments, sex, smoking habits etc.

Now I don’t know how true this is and whether ASCM was paid by the Federation of Yoga Loonies to prove that Yoga is awesome. I don’t even think such a federation exists, because I just made that up!

What I can put on the table for you to consider are facts:

  1. I lost about 9 kilos in 4 months, since I started practicing Yoga
  2. I do feel positively less stressed
  3. My chronic Rhino sinusitis has been less active
  4. My stamina of exercising and endurance have both increased many fold. And I have eye witnesses in the form of my yoga batch-mates to vouch for that. Still long way to go though…
  5. Don’t even get me started on my flexibility
  6. I still have not achieved the zen state. I must mention this as I do fight with my wife every now and then and she will read this article at some point in time I would like to believe

So whether it’s a complete workout or not – I don’t know. As a wise man said once upon a time, Yoga is not about fitness but about wellness. I will add a bit of running, swimming and a game of tennis to my exercise regime, just because I love it and I don’t like to put all my eggs in the same basket. But will I continue to do Yoga? Heck yeah!

Monkey see, monkey do

The very first time I attended a yoga class, the teacher had asked if there were any first timers. As it turned out, I was the only newbie in class. The teacher then told me to simply “monkey see, monkey do” first because some unfamiliar words and yoga poses might be challenging for beginners. She will come to me whenever I needed some corrections or adjustments in executing the poses. All I thought being a yoga teacher is as simple as knowing the poses and then students will just follow. At that time, I did not make so much attention understanding the yoga practice.

When I joined the Yoga Teacher Training (YTT), it made me realize that it was not as simple as I think it is to be a yoga teacher. I wished that If I could just simply translate the monkey see monkey do approach to telling my students like “just do this, then like this, and do like that…” then teaching yoga could have been easier isn’t it?

Till today, I still struggle preparing a lesson plan, putting together the instructions into words and then delivery to teach in actual is even more challenging. While teaching, I even still get confused which is my left and right when giving instructions while facing my students. Long way to go for me to teach with confidence. I need lots and lots and lots of practice!

And with this realizations and challenges during YTT, I had so much respect to yoga teachers.

Do you think yogis have higher tolerance of pain?

During practice teaching for Yoga Teachers Training (YTT), with my husband as my ultra- beginner yoga student, I was trying to explain to him the importance and some techniques of breathing. However, he seems to be not so interested with it apparently so boring. While I was counting through the breaths and when trying to progressively prolong each breath, so funny that he complaint and he said he cannot control because his breathing is automatic! So, I was thinking what breathing example to give him to relate to, that sometimes we do or instinctively do in some situations in our day to day lives.

To be able to engage and let him focus when trying to prolong breathing, as an example, I let him imagine as if he just knocked his shin bone at the corner of a bed. And at that moment, how do we usually react to the sudden pain is an instinct that we have to take a very deep breathing. Prolonging the inhale and sometimes we would even hold it too, and then exhaling very slowly because we are trying to contain and ease the pain.

When you listen to your breathing, feeling the breathing, maintaining a focus on the breath, this creates space and gives you ease. But I was just wondering, as yogis’ practice so many different breathing techniques, does it imply yogis may have higher tolerance of pain?

What is the most boring part in yoga for you?

Yoga teaches us to be present and engaged with the moment. It teaches us to breath steadily and be patient with ourselves. Yoga increase your energy and calms the mind. It increases flexibility, mobility, muscle strength and builds stamina. It releases physical and mental stress.  But there are times we feel bored in our yoga practice. Especially for some beginners who does not have that discipline, focus and awareness yet. I have gathered some feedbacks from friends on what makes them feel bored in practicing yoga:
1. Breathing part is boring!
2. Counting is so slow
3. Boring when no music
4. Boring when practicing alone
5. Some boring teachers!

I believe yoga becomes boring because it is either you are not training under proper mentor or you are not doing with all your focus on the Asana that you are doing. So, what is the most boring part in yoga for you?

Some awkward and embarrassing moments in a yoga class

Though we pretend to ignore but there are some uncomfortable scenarios we deal in a yoga class. It is distracting and sometimes we are annoyed of these disturbances and interruptions during a yoga class.

1. Yoga student comes late and walks noisily into class. Or a yoga student who leaves early. Likewise, when a yoga teacher comes late.
2. Seeing some students inappropriately dressed, having tears in the crotch or wears see-through clothing.
3. Mess next to you. Knocking over a water bottle or a drinking glass, then you spill the liquid. Tripping over an eye-glasses and almost breaking it.
4. Farts. You are lucky if it is just air.
5. Loud and exaggerated breathing
6. Loud noises like low-flying aircrafts, fire alarms, and mobile phones going off in class especially during final relaxation.
7. Falling into deep sleep during Savasana, and then snores. At times, waking up when everyone is about to leave because class is over.

Yoga in my mind

I keep thinking and finding for this question for quite a long time, but the only reason I would like to say is that I like it, and as day by day practise, I love it.

There are thousands reasons to do one time and millions reasons to not do one thing, just as you wish, but to do a thing by no reason that is love. And love can be any type, any shape and any feeling.

First met yoga was two years ago, whatever I practice is far, far, far, far times ∞ away from what I think I would be, I cannot catch any instruction cause all my body parts were not listen to me, I feel so sad, but so happy at the same time and made up my mind that I will keep practice till one day I meet the one, deep in my mind, she is back to me, face to the light, Svarga Dvidasana postured, peacefully.

After one sections I stopped for about half year, even I only practice for 10 classes, I did miss it, miss the time with yoga, this missing is neither salty nor sweet, neither near nor far, I know we will meet each other again.

Fate is wonderful, sour, sweet, bitter, spicy and salty, all bring me the joyous and happiness, new teachers and new friends, and yoga becomes part of my life, I thank all my teachers and friends, and they also stand together with her, the one in my mind, and more and more clearer, closer.

My motto is “重在坚持, 贵在真诚” (Important on persevering, priceless in sincere), I believe that time will make difference as long as never give up, and only cherish the sincere can make life happiness. So just keep practise and hand over others to time.

There is a long, long, long, long times ∞ way to go and never forget why I started, one day I will be there.

Reasons not to practise yoga

What’s the difference between a reason, and an excuse?

A reason is “a cause, explanation, or justification for an action or event”. In other words, a reason should explain why something is the way that it is. However, a lot of the time, what we think are ‘reasons’ are probably ‘excuses’. An excuse is an “attempt to lessen the blame” and often means that we don’t take the right responsibility or any accountability for the situation. Here are some reasons I’ve heard (or given myself) to not practice yoga. Are they really reasons, or excuses?

 “I’m too tired!” = Excuse

Yoga asana, like any exercise, can put demands on your body and mind that may be tiring. But asana can also help to restore energy, and allow for more effective rest. Tiredness is not a reason – it’s an excuse! You can still practise yoga!

“I have an acute injury or illness.” = Reason

Our bodies do need time to heal and repair after illness or injury. Although it varies from person to person and injury/illness, certain asana may not be appropriate or even prevent healing from that specific injury or illness. Always check with a doctor that you are medically OK to do any form of exercise, yoga included. While this is a good reason to temporarily stop or to modify asana, it’s not a reason to stop yoga altogether. You can still practise yoga!

“Yoga is for women!” (some men) = Excuse

Some cultures socialise men and women into expected patterns of behavior, to the extent that this excuse, perhaps is more of a way of masking insecurity, when at the root, the excuse is “I’m afraid I will be emasculated if I am not the best/strongest person in a room full of women”. Get over yourself! Yoga is for everyone, and everyone can learn something, get stronger, and get better. Modern yoga is derived from teachings handed down by men. You only compete with yourself and your ego.

“I’m menstruating.” (women) = Reason

Different people have different ideas on this topic. I have had some teachers who say that when you have your period, you should do restorative asana only; others might say continue with all asana as usual but ‘take it easy’; some say avoid practice on the first day; still others say to avoid yoga altogether. This can be quite personal and there are many articles and opinions available if you search online. It is important to know what is happening to the body and make adjustments accordingly.

I think this article summarises it quite well and explains both pranic and physical rationales: avoid inversions, asana that put stress on abdominal/pelvic region, and bandhas (extract below).

“In a yoga practice there are certain asanas that should be avoided during menstruation. The main type of asanas are inversions… The reasoning for this is that when we practice inversions one type of prana, known as apana, which normally flows in the downward direction from the manipur chakra (naval centre) to mooladhar chakra (cervix), is reversed…Another reason is that during inversions the uterus is pulled towards the head and causes the broad ligaments to be over stretched which cause partial collapse of the veins, leaving open arteries to continue pumping blood. This can lead to vascular congestion and increased menstrual bleeding…

Secondly, any very strong asanas particularly strong backbends, twists, arm balances and standing positions that put a lot of stress on the abdominal and pelvic region should be avoided, especially if the woman is going through a lot of pain at the time… If the pelvic region is causing spasm and pain why cause more contraction and pressure to the area. Also these positions need more physical strength and exertion which can be lacking during this time and can be depleted further by the practice…

Thirdly, bandhas should be avoided for similar reasons. On a pranic level they move the apana upwards instead of down and physically they add more contraction to an already tight region and in the case of uddiyan bandha increasing the heat which can lead to heavier bleeding.”

Menstruation is a reason to modify or postpone yoga, but not to stop altogether!

“I’m not flexible!” = Excuse

This is like saying, I can’t have a bath because I’m not clean! Think about it: we take baths to become cleaner. We practise yoga to improve flexibility. We all have different flexibility levels in different parts of the body. Some can bend forwards effortlessly (not me); others can bend backwards (also not me); others have flexible hips or shoulders or can twist their spines. Asana practice will help to build flexibility and mobility in joints and muscles. If anything, this is a reason to do yoga, not avoid it!

“I’ve just eaten a huge meal.” = Reason

Although there are many asana that help massage and improve the digestive organs, like many other forms of exercise, it can be uncomfortable or even impossible to practise asana when your belly is full. You need some time to give the body a chance to process the food, so that you can put your energy towards practice rather than to digestion (and this article explains a bit more about the physiology). I personally prefer practising yoga in the morning, before breakfast, or at least 2 hours after eating.

But as you can see – this reason, along with the others listed, are not reasons to never do yoga, or to stop yoga entirely. They are reasons to wait, modify, or stop temporarily the practice. There is no reason not to do yoga!