Anusara Yoga – what is that ?

For me, yoga is a journey.

Who says journey, said discoveries, secret paths, unexplored land, magic moments, difficult times, awarenesses, and transformation. It is a inner journey, a rediscovery of yourself and your real nature, your true self, an adjustment sometimes, a re-connexion with yourself and others, which became, with time, indispensable to my physical and spiritual balance.

The profits of the yoga are multiple. On a physical level, asanas (postures) participate, among others, in muscular strengthening, slackening of tensions, softening of the body, as well as opening of the subtle channels which allow the prana ( vital energy) to circulate more freely, totally in the body, accompanied by a conscious breath. On a psychic and spiritual level, the practice of yoga improves concentration and calming of the flow of the thoughts, and can bring, with time and a regular practice, a feeling of satisfaction, an inner bliss, and a subtle but very deep transformation.

Among all the yoga styles I had the opportunity to practise, Anusara yoga inspired me most in my personal practice. Anusara means “flowing with Grace,” “flowing with Nature,” “following your heart”, or more simply, move with grace and nature, following the aspirations of the heart.

In this style, a part of Hatha Yoga, there is three aspects which I enjoy particularly, and for which I have a profound respect:

– first of all, there is the rigor, the commitment in the practice, where a big importance is granted to meditation and connection between the spirit and the body, and especially, the famous « Universal Principles of Alignments ». They teach us how to align our whole body, for a safe practice, in accordance with our internal pulsation, in a therapeutic, informed and creative experience, in every pose. « Dancing with the breath », we investigate the biomechanics of our body. As much on a physical as an emotional level, this aspect reveals our « patterns » which allows us to choose a more appropriate answer.

– then, there is the place given to every person: in each of us lie our deep nature, our Authentic Essence, or True Self, not separated from the Universal Essence. In this spirit, the practice inspired by Anusara Yoga aims us to reveal our inner beauty and the Divinity already present in each of us. Therefore, every person is respected and honoured with his/her possibilities and limitations, not judged but completely accepted as he/she is. The philosophy that underlies the physical practice comes from the tradition of Kashmir Shaivism Tantra, believing in « the intrinsic kindness and beauty of every being « , and bringing every practitioner to reveal and to cultivate the best of him/herself, already present in him/her.

– finally, a human being, like the universe, is a constant stream of energies always pulsating, joyful and creative. We meet that up as much in the physical as spiritual practice, where rigor rhymes with enthusiastically, self-fulfilment and fun.

As for me, practising yoga, any kind of yoga, it is to become aware of what takes place in our body and mind/spirit, but also around us. It is to learn to love ourselves such as we are, and to spread this love. It is a general awareness, not turned to one, but on the contrary, opens to all that surrounds us. It is to find authentic values, and to have respect for every living being on this planet.

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