What does Kundalini Yoga mean to you?
By Gina Shaw
Sat Nam! I’m Gina Shaw, the new intern at Yoga at the Ashram this summer. My place here includes working in our office as well as personal development through the practice of Kundalini yoga. For the next couple of months, I’ll be sharing some of my thoughts surrounding the wonders of Kundalini as well as keeping everyone updated with our workshops and events : – )
From the yogic perspective, the term Kundalini refers to the energy that resides at the base of the spine. Uncoiling that energy through the practice of Kundalini yoga which includes physical postures (asanas) and breathing techniques (pranayama) are designed to uplift all parts of the individual to truly touch and experience this union with our Higher Power. This especially comes in handy in our modern world where the everyday experience does not come without constant attempts to sell market and instill the idea that we must have objects and materials to beautify the body, to please the body. Our minds can get quite lost in the experience of satisfying the physical body on the earthly plane, hardly giving ourselves a chance to reside outside of the monkey mind; our constant inner dialogue.
The beautiful reality of Kundalini yoga is that anyone is invited to join.You do not have to abandon the cultural traditions of your family to practice Kundalini yoga. In fact, the spiritual nature of Kundalini yoga may bring more clarity and understanding into your own religious practice. As we transition into a global society, it has become far easier to access the knowledge of spiritual cultures and traditions. We are no longer bound by our geographical location and limited in our ability to access information. When engaging with this vast and sometimes overwhelming amount of information, it becomes a process of surrendering and listening to where we feel our most authentic selves may be cultivated and nourished. There is no wrong way to do so, as the uniqueness of our individual paths is to be celebrated and recognized for its beauty. It is a balance of honoring and respecting ones culture and tradition while finding deeper meaning of Life through the understanding and adopting of other practices as well – if one chooses to do so. There is no need to get caught up in doing things the “right way” which is something that has taken me quite a bit of time to truly come to terms with. I have a deep sense of love and appreciation for the teachings of Yogi Bhajan, while also incorporating styles of Tibetan Buddhist meditation into my daily practice. In addition, as I was raised Christian, I still attend church and find meaning and profound truth in the sermons of the priests.
If any of this resonates with you, we invite you to look into the workshops Yogi Amandeep will be teaching this coming weekend, which draw from the rich traditions of Zen, Tibetan teachings, Sufi Dharma, and Kundalini Yoga and Sikh Dharma. This is the spirit of Nanak, loved by all 500 years ago, crucially relevant to us today.
This Friday June 12th, Amandeep Singh will be creating space for those to develop intuitive communication through the Flower Sutra. For those attending, please bring along a flower of your choice. Saturday and Sunday will be spent exploring the life of the Aquarian master, Guru Nanak and diving into his teachings of the conscious experience of Oneness.
Be the light.”