Welcome to Week 2 of our eight-week journey into Pantanjali’s 8 Limbs of Yoga. Last week we covered limb one, the Yamas. If you missed it, you can find it here.
Patanjali’s eight limbs describe categories or steps that together create the whole system called yoga. No one element is more important than another. They work together to create a union between body, mind, and spirit.
The second limb is called Niyama. The Niyamas remind us to look within. It’s time to get up close and personal with ourselves. Embracing the Niyamas can help us reconnect with our true selves. From that seat of stability and grounding, we can then fully step into our lives and into the evolving flow of harmonizing body and soul.
- SAUCA. Sauca translates to purity and cleanliness. This can apply both internally and externally. Beyond physical cleanliness, cleansing the mind of disturbing emotions (i.e. hatred, anger, delusion, pride, etc.) will help us maintain clarity of mind.
5 Ways to Enhance Your Emotional Intelligence (Huffington Post)
- SANTOSA. Santosa is contentment. Rather than being an ultimate place of contentment or peace that we will one day arrive at, true Santosa is finding contentment wherever we are, with whatever we have, and viewing life’s difficulties as an opportunity for growth.
The Gifts of Contentment (Care2)
- TAPAS. Tapas literally means to heat the body. Tapping into Tapas burns up all the unnecessary desires that leak our energy and fans the flame of our inner fire so that we can engage with life fully and handle whatever life throws at us.
Wildfire, Tapas & The Pain of Transformation (MindBodyGreen)
- SVADHYAYA. Svadhyaya, or self-study, encourages deep reflection. This reflection can allow us to peer deeply and clearly within and see, at last, our true essence.
Angels & Demons: Embracing Our Disowned Parts (Elephant Journal)
- ISVARA PRANIDHANA. Isvara pranidhana is surrendering our individual self or ego to a higher source. This practice helps us connect with the universal, the divine, or “God” in everything and let go of the small, separate “I.” Softening and opening ourselves to life at its source can give us access the endless and powerful supply of love inside us all.
The S.T.A.R.R. of Letting Go (Positively Positive)