Yoga Nidra and Self Care

From compassion based meditation and contemplation we move toward a new quarter focused on rest, rejuvenation and establishment in spiritual practice and study. 

“As the season around us invites more air, dryness and ether we begin to see how important it is to tend to self care rituals that nurture and ground us. Following the peaks and brilliance of summer and its light and warmth, the energy of nature begins to shift down a gear as everything starts to turn inward and begin to decay before laying dominant in winter  to build reserves and potential for bloom in spring.” 

This month, as with every month, we move with nature. We cook grounding foods, we protect our skin from dryness, we do grounding Vata quelling practices like Abhyanga and Yoga Nidra. We garden more, maintain our creative outlets and tend to our own inner garden. 

Ritual: Abhyanga is an Ayurvedic practice where you anoint the physical vessel in warmed oil and massage the body from head to toe with light rhythmic strokes to nurture the body and stimulate the system.  It is a practice that is particularly great to do in times when the mind feels anxious, when you feel ungrounded and in this dry season of Autumn. 

“This Ayurvedic treatment begins by doing a massage of the head, including neck and shoulders, to stimulate the central nervous system and prepare the whole body for the healing experience to come.” – Vital Veda

Abhyanga is a self massage practice you can do yourself every day that you are not menstruating or sick and unwell. This is because if you are unwell the body sweats out toxins and by applying an oil or moisturising we are hindering the bodies natural processes. We always want to work with the body and it’s innate intelligence. 

Please read this article for more in-depth information from an Ayurvedic practitioner. 

Oils to use: Black Sesame | Brahmi | Coconut Oil *It depends on your dosha so try to seek advice from an Ayurvedic consultant 

(save this graph to your phone/ print it out in your diary or write out 

the steps in your diary for your morning practice) 

Open Eyed Practice:

 Practice Abhyanga most days and if not fully just do the feet every night before bed this month. 

Self recitation / Prayer: 

As you awake | “As I begin this day, may I not be tempted to stray from love. May my mind and heart be pure and True, May I see the love and innocence in others, May I see the love and innocence in myself. May I be used for good and serve the healing of myself and the entire world.” 

 April_ Morning Prayer _ Self recitation 1.mp3

As you drift to sleep | “Thank you for this day. As I enter sleep may these hours bring me peace. May they bring healing to my mind and body so that I may see the light in me and the light in others. May those who suffer and feel pain be free. May only the love remain.” 

April_ Evening Prayer _ Self recitation.mp3 

Contemplate: 

“My dear,

We are all made of water.

it’s okay to rage. sometimes

It’s okay to rest. to recede.”

― Sanober Khan, A Thousand Flamingos

Meditation:  Yoga Nidra Practice 

We will introduce the art of Yoga Nidra in depth next month however we will begin the practice of enlightened sleep before going into the deep teachings. For now, please know this is the only meditation practice were we lay on our back to practice. 

You will need a blanket of yoga mat to lay on, a pillow under your back or shoulders if you feel tight in these areas and a light piece of cloth for your eyes if practicing during the day. To avoid the temptation and creating samskaras (impressions or patterns) where you drift to sleep try to practice before the sun goes down. 

Music:  Yoga Nidra Playlist

Listen:  Podcast: Yoga Nidra + Rod Stryker 

Playlist for the monthWays that Were Playlist 

Traditionally, Yoga Nidra is considered to be equal to the higher stages of

samadhi, a state during in which activity of the mind is completely suspended. In

Yoga Nidra neither thoughts nor images are present, and the practitioner

experiences conscious, deep, dreamless sleep, possessing awareness of the

surroundings––without either thinking about or interacting with them.

Community Catchup | Meditation and Introducing the Quarter Recording 

Mid Morning Yoga Nidra | with Harmony

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