Do you believe in magic? Not necessarily the kind of tricks you might see at a Las Vegas show, but more the type of magic that manifests as an intangible feeling that can’t be measured with logic or science.
Whatever your initial reason for beginning yoga, you probably know you don’t keep returning simply because your hamstrings are more supple–– there is something more. Let’s call that subtle quality, the magic of yoga.
Perhaps you felt happy for ten minutes, ten hours, ten days, or even ten years after yoga class and you can’t pinpoint why. We often discuss the tangible physical benefits of a consistent yoga practice, like strength, flexibility, and balance. These qualities are wonderful, but not everything about yoga can be quantified.
This week we’re focusing more on what is percolating beneath the surface in the subtle body.
Our subtle body is said to contain more than 72,000 Nadis or energy channels and prana encompasses more than the muscles and the ligaments. It impacts our nervous system, our circulatory system, and our organs, whether we are aware of it or not. When we practice yoga, whatever the style, we are shifting and moving around our prana or life force energy.
The magic of yoga impacts us on a cellular level. How? Why?
In the third chapter of the Yoga Sutras, Patanjali discusses how magical powers or siddhis are achieved through a dedicated yoga practice. Superhero powers like levitating, becoming invisible, and achieving the strength of an elephant are laid out as tangible benefits.
Is Patanjali being literal? We will never know, but the point is all of the results of yoga cannot be explained in a practical way. We haven’t levitated lately, but who knows, maybe next week? What about you?
Just like magic, yoga is full of rituals like breathing in certain patterns, moving in particular sequences, chanting, and meditating with mantras and specific techniques.
Although we can’t actually see what’s happening inside of us, change is occurring.
You simply feel happier and more connected with the world around you. Can you accept these benefits without being able to define the path that led you to them?
The only way to explore what unique magic and benefits yoga has for you, is to practice and explore these more subtle and spiritual practices. Try it!
1. Cicily Carter - Crown Chakra Yoga
2. Caitlin Rose Kenney - Inner Strength: Yin Yoga for Self-Trust
3. Kristin Gibowicz - Metamorphosis: Beauty in the Waiting
4. Mark Morford - Yoga Alchemy: The Two Tools
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