The Upanishads are the foundational text of the Yogic tradition. They are so important that we incorporated them into our online ytt programs. You can use online ytt to deepen your practice, and I’m of the mindset that the experience is our greatest teacher. I am so grateful for the time, wisdom, and love shared between my teachers and their students, and I acknowledge their unique guidance and gifts. As I continue along my path, practicing, teaching, living and experiencing the fullness of breath, body, and mind I am drawn back to the source of the sweet nectar of Truth that rest in the Upanishads, Breath of the Eternal.
Many of our students use online ytt to deepen their practice. I’m currently leading a 500 hour online ytt with a colleague, and during our off weeks, I offer the group short inspirational podcast where I simply read a chapter from the Upanishads and provide an inspirational message about the text. This is the first off week, so we are beginning with Isha, the first Upanishad in Frederick Manchester’s collaborative work with Swami Prabhavananda.
The beauty is that Isha begins in the same way that we all begin: Bouncing between two extremes, or Gunnas. As humans, we recognize the connection to divinity, we long for it. Not only to feel it, deeply in our somatic tissue, but to also embody it, and merge into it.
In Yoga Philosophy, Lord Shiva is the masculine principle of God, Purusha, Pure Cosmic Consciousness. Inert blueprints to the creation of the Universe. Goddess Shakti is the creative energy that manifests, it is Prakriti, and it cycles though the Gunnas. Shiva is always in Sattva, balanced and pure.
In Isha, the writer is warning against feeling that the experience was all about the ethereal, the physical, the intellectual, or the emotional. The purpose of this first book is to show that balance is key, and acknowledging the body as the vessel of God, the mind as the tool of God, and the heart as the gift of God we can be fully present in our everyday lives. The magic is in the moment. Take a listen and percolate on the nuances of the activities of described in the text. Consider how you might create a practice of moving meditation in your everyday life.