21 September 2009

Yoga nidra

Yoga nidra is described by the Bihar school of yoga in India as “sleep with a trace of awareness”. It is a deep relaxation practice, dropping the conscious mind into the unconscious, bringing you to a deep meditation in which you are awake and aware… releasing tensions. It involves practising the 5th limb of yoga, pratyahara (withdrawal of senses). A sankalpa – or positive affirmation - is introduced to direct the mind. Rotation of consciousness is used to take the mind on a journey through the body, and breath awareness and visualization techniques balance the left and right sides of the brain, deepening the feeling of relaxation.

I would like to recommend a book and a yoga nidra CD by Richard Miller Ph.D.: Yoga Nidra - The Meditative Heart of Yoga

His wise guidance is clear and inspiring, and is a great tool for teachers and students alike. I always feel refreshed and balanced after yoga nidra and teach it to my prenatal students who find that it helps alleviate fears associated with pregnancy; as well as bringing about deep relaxation. Richard Miller has a soft melodic voice that my labrador also loves... He will come and lie down beside me whenever he hears this CD go on.

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