Dharana & Dhyana – concentration & meditation

Based on the “Five Points of Yoga” as outlined by Swami Vishnu-Devananda-ji.+

5. Meditation (Dhyana) and positive thinking

Here is the most important point of all, we become what we think. Thus we should exert to entertain positive and creative thoughts as these will contribute to vibrant health and a peaceful, joyful mind. A positive outlook on life can be developed by learning and practising the teachings of the philosophy of Vedanta. The mind will be brought under perfect control by regular practice of meditation.

Meditation is a natural state of consciousness that isn’t learned, any more that you learn to sleep. It just happens. When the mind becomes one-pointed and steady, it will naturally go beyond the normal mundane awareness into the state referred to as meditation.

Before meditation, practice concentration, one – pointed thinking. Then this practice will lead to a meditative state of the mind. Train the mind in a variety of ways in concentration in the beginning. Sit in a quiet place, or in nature focus on your breath. Inhale – Exhale …… mentally repeating a Mantra “OM” or “Soham”. Concentrate on any concrete image: a flower, a candle, the blue sky. Concentrate within on one of the Chakras.

In meditation do not strain the eyes. Do not strain the brain. Do not struggle or wrestle with the mind. Relax. Observe the thoughts like a cloud passing by. Gently allow the divine thoughts flow.

Meditation practice – Concentration on a flower.

Through regular meditation, the mind becomes clear and the motives pure. The subconscious mind release hidden knowledge that allows a better understanding of oneself and our relationship to the world. the limited personality slowly dissolves into an expanded consciousness. Ultimately, the super-conscious or intuitive forces are released, leading to a life of wisdom and peace.

Swami Vishnu-Devananda

Sunrise Meditation in nature – yoga weekend retreat September 2018.

my rant about beer – yoga

Overtime there are always many fads that come and go. Some are funny, cute, amusing, trendy and market themselves under the umbrella of Yoga, such as cat-yoga, doga, SUP-Yoga , nude or naked-yoga, etc.

But the latest one beer – yoga goes under my skin, and I need to state my opinion and probably that of many serious yoga practitioners: beer –  yoga.  What an insult to the masters and ancient wisdom of yoga.

I have nothing against drinking beer, a good glass of wine, fancy cocktails, what ever rocks your boat.

But beer – yoga: drinking while practising Asana, Pranayama and Meditation.  You missed the point of the true nature and teachings of Yoga.

If you want to drink beer, while doing certain stretches and exercises, do that if you want, but please don’t call it Yoga.

Prema Maria

Support Aussie Farmers

I decided to donate $2 for every person coming to a yoga class this week, August 6th – 10th, 2018 in support of the Farmers in Australia living though the worst drought in many, many years.

This includes the Yoga class I teach for the PCYC Ipswich on a Wednesday evening. And everyone coming for a free trial class. So please bring your friends and family to a yoga class this week.  Dust off your yoga mats, the days are warm.

I’m thinking to donate the final amount to Drought Angels, based in Chinchilla, Queensland. \ https://www.droughtangels.org.au/

I know it’s a small gesture, but I believe if everyone shows a bit of Support to the drought stricken farmers, we can make a difference.

Through the month of July (school holidays and many cold, frosty mornings) an average of 40 Yogis came to class per week.

Please come to the yoga classes in high numbers this week. Thank you!!

 

Update 13-8-18
52 happy Yogis made it to a class. Many gave extra change, and my husband helped to top it up to a even $200.-, which I donated to Drought Angels this morning.
Thank you everyone for coming to class and showing support.

 

The Five Points of Yoga

During the yoga weekend retreat we practice the five points of yoga.

Hatha Yoga Ipswich

Swami Vishnu-Devanandacondensed the whole yoga tradition into a very practical system, aptly named ‘The Five Propers or ‘Five Points of Yoga’:

1. Proper Exercise (Asanas)
Our physical body is meant to move and exercise. If our lifestyle does not provide natural motion of muscles and joints, then disease and great discomfort will ensue with time. Proper exercise should be pleasant to the practitioner while beneficial to the body, mind and spiritual life.
2. Proper Breathing (Pranayama)
Yoga teaches us how to use the lungs to their maximum capacity and how to control the breath. Proper breathing should be deep, slow and rhythmical. This increases vitality and mental clarity.
3. Proper Relaxation (Savasana)
Long before the invention of cars, planes, telephones, computers, freeways and other modern triggers of stress, the Rishis (sages or seers) and Yogis of yore devised very powerful techniques of deep relaxation. As a matter of fact, many…

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Change your outlook to be happy.

“If you change your outlook, vision, imagination and attidude even a bit you can be happy everywhere.

Man/woman suffers on account of his/her own imagination and old habits of thinking. He/she never allows him/herself to be changed. This is Maya – the illusion.”

Sri Swami Sivananda

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Geranium in my garden.

 

 

Success in Yoga

Wise words by Swami Sivananda:

 

Success in Yoga or any other spiritual path requires the annihilation or control of the six enemies, viz., lust, anger, greed, pride, jealousy and hypocrisy.
Sri Swami Sivananda-ji

 

 

Swami Sivananda
Swami Sivananda