This spiritual practice is a flowing meditative approach to yoga, divided very loosely into three stages: The basic teachings of these stages can be of benefit to anyone from any yoga or spiritual tradition, and may be adapted to any age level. It provides guidance for all degrees of yoga practice.
S t a g e 1
Suited to most practitioners and to students who are new (or relatively new) to yoga
Students learn the basic techniques, benefits and precautions of classical asanas, pranayama, yoga nidra and other introductory yoga practices, suited to their age and present capacity.
They learn (i) the art of safe and mindful attention to alignment, (ii) energetic extensions to optimize the flow of prana (energy), and (iii) the value of micro-movements for exploration of the body, in order to discover and release hidden energy stresses and blockages.
Students also learn to slow down their movements and co-ordinate them with breathing. This induces integration and a light meditative state.
Many of these principles are covered in the popular schools of hatha yoga throughout North America. For new students, Stage I provides a solid yoga routine, based on approximately 30 approachable classic yoga poses arranged in a progressive vinyasin sequence, which builds strength and stamina and integrates mind and body.
Students are also free to create flows which deepen their own personal connection to the practices, by applying the principles they learn in the basic routine. For anyone who practices even a little bit, the healthy benefits of yoga can be felt.
Students also learn the powerful integrative value of allowing silent space between the ‘doing’ and ‘being’ part of the postures. Here we are introduced to the spiritual dimension of yoga. This is the meditative, peaceful, timeless, silent inner Self, which demystifies the ‘spiritual’ part of the human being.
This Kripalu/Amrit-inspired yoga practice is not only focused on asana postures, though they are the vehicle for learning. The intention of the practice is to learn the art of mindful relaxation during asana practice. It is to achieve the art of relaxing deeply into a felt sense of the present moment, which spontaneously brings a mind/body balance and opens the channels of healing,of intuition and spirit and pen with laser pointer.
Through a moderate, yet physical experience of asana (combined with pranayama techniques), deeply buried tension is naturally released without needing to analyze with the mind. The body/mind is healed, purified and integrated. Through in-depth training and study, Jody has learned specific languaging which becomes a springboard from which she guides a deeply integrative experience. This balances the chakras and reintegrates us experientially with our basic spiritual nature.
Over time, proper yoga practice changes our physical chemistry and perception of the world we live in. It builds physical, mental and emotional health and balance, which lead to a strong and powerful connection with one’s ‘inner centre’. This results in deeper sense of trust and confidence. When the mind and body are balanced, life ‘flows’ much easier and we live with an increasing sense of joy, compassion, grace and wonder.
The ‘off the mat’ practices such as loving kindness, seeking joy in life, yamas and niyamas, community service, and living a moral, moderate, balanced, creative lifestyle — are encouraged to complement this form of yoga. It is accessible to practitioners of any level and age, and teaches us the ancient science and art of natural living.