Saturday, 7 October 2017

Importance of Yogic Sleep (Yoga Nidra) By Latha Ramanan


Importance of Yoga Nidra (Yogic Sleep) By Latha Ramanan

                                                                     (Photo Courtesy: Carol Trevor)

Yoga Nidra (Yogic sleep) is a way to rejuvenate, repair, heal and balance energy, body and mind. It is sometimes compared to power nap; power nap is short sleep that rests body and mind that leaves the person refreshed afterwards, whereas yogic sleep is a deep state of rest that heals the body and mind.
Yogic sleep can be practised on its own or usually, at the end of a yoga session to gain maximum benefit. It has a meditative quality of rest where the person experiences a stage between awareness and sleep.
Duration of Yoga Nidra can be 5 minutes to as long as one hour depending on the need or choice. For example, during bodily weakness one may not be able to practice physical yoga (hatha yoga) and may have to stick to pranayama and or yoga nidra on the bed. At another instant, a 5 -10 minutes of yogic sleep is sufficient at the end of yoga class, after practising all the yoga asanas (poses).

Benefits of Yoga Nidra         
It improves sleep and other metabolic activities such as digestion, excretion, etc.
It helps in balance of energy through the system
It aids in speedy recovery from illness.         
It creates mental peace and refreshes the body to come out of lethargy.
It boosts immunity.
It removes mental blocks such as fears or traumas that were deep rooted or suppressed.
It relaxes the nervous system.


(Photo Courtesy:Zen Mountain Monastery)



How Yoga Nidra can be practised

Best practice would be to attend a yoga nidra session under a yoga teacher but if that is not possible the method can be studied from books or other audios by experienced yoga instructors. There are many techniques of yoga nidra practice.
Yogic sleep is usually practised by resting in savasana (relaxation by lying on the back) with a relaxed body and closed eyes. In yogic texts it is mentioned that we are made of pancha koshas(5 sheaths/ layers) that is,1. physical layer/annamaya kosha, 2. Pranamaya kosha/energy layer, 3.mental layer/manomaya kosha , 4. Intellectual or wisdom layer/vijnanamaya kosha and 5.divine layer/anandamaya kosha. Yogic sleep guides to rest the physical layer and sink deeper into consciousness of other sheaths, sometimes dip into all sheathes/layers or sometimes one or two of them and return to the awareness of physical body.
Practise starts with moving the awareness from toes to head, relaxing each part of the body, becoming aware of breath and consequently the mind, with an attitude of a witness- not getting involved in any process or judging anything, be it sensation or a thought or an outside sound. There is a possibility of slumping into sleep that is also all right if you have enough time on hand although the purpose of yoga nidra is to be in awareness state between wakefulness and sleep.
A positive affirmation or a sankalpa(a short resolve) can be said  silently in the mind, at the beginning and end of the yogic sleep so that it becomes a sub-conscious guide/ seed to give purpose to life and move towards life goals in an accelerated pace.
Coming out of yoga nidra is done as gently as possible, moving the toes and fingers and deepening breath to come back to body consciousness and if yoga nidra is practised in lying down posture, slowly turning to one side from lying down position to sit up with minimum movements.
Happiness, high energy, balance in energy and peace of mind felt after an effective yoga nidra is beyond words, it has to be experienced!





Saturday, 8 July 2017

TWIN FLAMES By Latha Ramanan


Twin Flames by Latha Ramanan

                                                                                                            (Photo courtesy 123rf)

Ancient souls we are,  lived many births yet we searched for each other,
To merge again into that oneness,  of two bodies with one soul.
We meet again at the end of the cycle of birth and death,
This time a bit wiser, loaded with maturity acquired from past births.

One deep look into the eyes we saw the familiarity of being twin flames,
Leading parallel lives elsewhere,  two bodies with same soul, bound by the divine invisible threads.
One touch of the fingers, brought the images of lives we crossed paths,
One deep breath gave the whiff of known body odour,
We whispered sweet nothings, naturally, in the first meeting itself,
Images of lives together surfaced in the mind,
Some well lived, some thrashed in the waves  of egos and worldly matters,
Forgetful of the source of origin and our soul connection.

Now that we met and found the soul connection,
Shall we live together till we shed the body?
Shall we live apart as before, cherishing the love till the last breath?
Letting go of the urge to build a nest,
Resisting the folly of slipping into vicious cycle in drama of  life?
Shall we break-away from artificial social duties and identities we think we have?
Shall we dig Earth, cut trees, spoil ground water in the name of building our home ?
Shall we produce more offsprings to the already over-populated world ?
Shall we explore each other's body in search of  peripheral  physical love? 

This time let us be wise,  avoiding the mistakes we made in many births?
Shall we, for a change, protect each other from 'falling' in love ?
Let us rise in the love rather than fall,  saving each other from pain and sacrifice of sincere love ?
Let us leave each other to one's  peace and freedom.

All said and done I want to be quite now,
My eyes are foggy, vision is blurred, tears are over-flowing,
They have by now smudge the words I wrote,
Although with heavy heart I let you go,
I am content that I saw myself in you and can wish you well where ever you live,
I have chopped half of me and offered to you as parting gift,
Let me gather myself in silence learning to live with what is left in me,
Ready to breathe my last, having seen my twin flame in the end of this birth cycle.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

THE DESCENT OF LORD by Latha Ramanan

THE DESCENT OF LORD

24 June 2017


THE DESCENT OF LORD By Latha Ramanan

Childhood ensured to live in yearning of my Lord,
Youth reaffirmed that I was born for Him,
Later years showed the path to Him,
Recollecting merging in Him is the soul's sole purpose.

Somewhere along the rugged, unbeaten road of life,
I lost the confidence to ascend towards Him,
When the last hope of meeting Him died,
I cut off my golden wings of flight.

Pain of separation from the Lord exceeded,
The deliberate act of chopping off wings of freedom,
I replaced on the wounds boulders of duty
And sensors to see Him in all.

Blood oozed from the unhealed wounds every now and then,
When my Lord's memory enlivened in the heart,
Blood oozed from wings,  then from the heart and eyes,
Till the dripping blood formed trails wherever I went.

I took an oath not to search for Him anymore,
Each moment has been spent in Him, now it was His turn to find me.
Wingless and blocking my path to Him with rocks of altruism, I remained.
He would have to follow the bloodied imprints I left.

The Lord had to descent, He couldn't resisit the pull,
How could He ignore the austerities of His beloved?
How can he be indifferent to a soul waiting to merge in Him?
How can He turn a blind eye to the river of blood that flowed from the sacrificial life?

Have faith my friend, when you know your soul's purpose,
Each experience in your life leads you to your destination,
Your life is worth living, you have a right to be in your space,
Everything around you are blessings and guidance in disguise.

Sunday, 18 June 2017

EVEN BUDDHA CRIES SOMETIMES

*Even Buddha Cries Sometimes* By Latha Ramanan
Listening to the woes of thousands,
Buddha stood still in the stone statue,
Absorbing and annihilating their sorrows,
Raising the masses to a higher plane each moment.

Amongst the crowd Buddha searched
For a soul that is away from the drama called life,
Not carried away in the world,
Living in the world but not of the world.

Often found a glimpse of such souls
In a desireless little girl who offers a flower
To Him with a smile from the heart,
In a content monkey, cow or dog that visits Him.

He discerned the same light as in Him
In the ever-giving effulgent Sun,
Benevolent full moon, undaunting waves and soothening breeze,
Where is such unruffled beings in human form?

Buddha sometimes loses tranquillity over the drama-driven human lives,
Who are inept to resonate His truthfulness,
fearlessness and compassion,
He cries sometimes perceiving human forms'
Inability to reverberate His universal healing love.

Friday, 2 June 2017

BE LOVE


Be Love by Latha Ramanan
Be Love from the silence of the Heart ,
Never be love of someone alone,
Never rationalise your love or be lovelorn,
Be love from the Heart.

Be the ocean of love, drowning all the passersby,
Sharing your love unconditionally, not knowing why,
Let each cell in you vibrate love,
That resonate in a passing butterfly,  an ant, a dog or a dove.

Let the love in you heal the world,
Give hope to humanity to be bold,
Let all walls and fears be wiped,
Break all the chains that the mind hyped.