Benefits of Yoga


Man is trapped in this civilised world of Maya (illusion) and falsehood. He moves in his world of duality, experiencing happiness and sadness, peace and restlessness, beauty and ugliness, love and hatred and more. Yoga is the path to discover the light within and man's real identity (learn more about what Yoga is here). One experiences harmony between the spirit, mind and body when practicing Yoga. When one adheres to the proper Yoga guidelines (available here), one can immensely benefit from the practice of Yoga - spiritually, mentally and physically.



SPIRITUAL BENEFITS

Connecting with Mother Nature
Man is part of Nature. Yoga emphasises on being one with Nature. Practitioners often experience a greater sense of appreciation, gratitude and compassion towards Mother Nature that will in turn, provide them with abundance, joy, peace, harmony and bliss.


Heightened intuition
One's intuitive power is sharpened through practicing dhyana (meditation). A strong intuition helps the spiritual aspirant make correct decisions to better their lives and others'. An increase in one's intuitive capacity also heightens one's discipline in listening to the conscience. With this, the aspirant can be sure to tread upon the path of Dharma (righteousness).


Change of character
Yoga is not a one-off exercise. In fact, it is a long-term practice. Through the benefits of Yoga practice, the spiritual aspirant is bound to change (not only externally, but internally as well). After some time, he / she will develop a positive character and habits such as discipline, determination, patience, righteousness, consideration, self-confidence etc.


Inner Peace
Dhyana (meditation) allows oneself to simply be. Concentrating on the breath, one delves within themselves where all mental chatter is silenced. Through meditation, one experiences their true nature - Sat (Truth), Chit (Consciousness) and Ananda (Bliss). This results in the experience of inner peace as one turns away from worldly matters.


Feeling of Oneness
Yoga practice stresses on the observance of the breath. Observing the breath helps one silence mental chatter and reduces the activity of the mind. When the mental activity is toned down, the aspirant is able to experience the inner peace that is buried within him. After some time, he will learn that his experienced reality and his being are connected. His experiences are not external circumstances that are out of his control, but merely the reflection of his mind. The aspirant will realise that the entire Universe is pervaded by only one and the same, undifferentiated energy.


Self-Realisation
Yoga practice will eventually help the spiritual aspirant discover the Truth that lies within him / her.



MENTAL BENEFITS

Heals mental disorders
According to most Yoga practitioners, the practice of Yoga breathing techniques have proven to help heal mental disorders such as trauma, migraine, depression, mood swings etc. Yogasana exercises (physical postures) calm the mind down and encourage the practitioner to disengage from their thoughts, which therefore allows them to rest and recover from such illnesses. It has also been proven scientifically that Yoga improves the overall blood circulation and provides healthy supply of oxygen into the brain. Research conducted by the Boston University School of Medicine and McLean Hospital stated that a type of hormone in the brain known as Gamma-Amino Butyric acid is 27% higher in those who perform Yoga. This hormone lowers the chances of depression setting in.


Boosts confidence
When both the mind and body are in harmony with each other, the practitioner will have a healthy body and a positive mindset. With that, his / her self-esteem is naturally boosted. Practicing Yoga from a tender age will encourage children to cultivate a healthy form of self-respect and confidence from within instead of relying on their surroundings (such as scoring in exams or winning trophies).


Disciplines the Mind
Man's mind is like a mad monkey. The Master says that unless it is disciplined, the mind will only invite havoc in our lives. Yoga practice helps tame this monkey and discipline it to obey its Master - the Self. The principles of Yoga are based on harnessing willpower and patience to achieve magnificent results.


Creativity
The subconscious mind, according to the Master, is man's divine garden. All that he plants there will grow into fact on this objective plane. The practice of Yoga is effective in helping man tune into his subconscious mind to enter the world of limitless possibilities, where he can access infinite creative ideas to objectify in his physical experience.

"If matter is mighty, thought is almighty." - Swami Vivekananda



PHYSICAL BENEFITS

Recharging the body
The origin of all matter is Prana (energy). Energy is drained when man is engaged in any activity. Breathing is the best way to draw in cosmic energy to recharge the body.


Unblocks the chakras
The seven chakras are the ones that are responsible in supporting the well-being of the body. Blockage to any of these chakras will result in the irregular flow of energy in one's subtle body, thus manifesting physical illnesses. Yoga practice unblocks the chakras to allow free flow of Prana (energy).


Regular & Proper breathing
Many people neglect the importance of practicing a proper breathing pattern. Yoga helps the practitioner adjust to a regular and proper rhythm to benefit the physical well-being.


Strengthens the immune system
Regular practice of Yogasanas helps build up the body's immune system so that bacteria and virus cannot easily affect the physical body.


Increases stamina
Practicing Yogasanas can be quite a challenge to the physical body. Practitioners should only perform poses that they are comfortable with, taking a step further each day (according to their limit). Regular practice of Yogasanas can increase the practitioner's stamina as a proper breathing pattern is implemented.


Increases flexibility
A great deal of physical stretching is required when performing Yogasanas. The ligaments, tendons and joints are stretched to achieve a particular posture. Regular practice will definitely increase the body's flexibility after some time. This is therefore effective for those who suffer from stiffness and tough joints.


Weight loss
Yoga practices stimulate the digestive system and increases one's metabolism. This therefore allows food to be digested more efficiently and thereby, result in less strain on the physical organs. The excess fat will also gradually burn off with the body movements in performing Yogasanas and an efficient digestive system. Specific Yoga postures also help tone the body muscles, which will help make the practitioner appear fit and well-shaped.


Corrects posture
When practiced correctly under the guidance of a professional Yoga guide, Yogasanas will gradually correct the practitioner's posture and will strengthen his / her muscles.


Alleviates bodily pains
Yoga is also good for those who suffer from pains in their joints and back. Scientific studies have discovered that back pain sufferers who enrolled in a 90-minute Yoga class, twice a week for half a year were more likely to relieve their pains by 56 percent. On the other hand, those receiving treatment were only relieved by 16 percent.


Better sleep
The practice of Yoga induces relaxation for both the mind and body, which will help the practitioner get better sleep during the night.


Healthy diet
An aspirant who is committed to uphold a Yogic lifestyle will become more health conscious and therefore opt to consume a healthy diet. The sense of craving for junk food will gradually decrease over time.

Posted by Sandhya Maarga Mission on 10:59. Filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0

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