Jun 4, 2008

Yoga is all sham !

A friend shared his experience of Yoga as follows:
I started doing yoga exercises after watching a popular yoga programme on tv. It worked well for some time and I felt I was slowly getting rid of migraine, spondilytis, knee pain and burning sensation in my chest. But after three months, I was imagining those benefits. The migraine and other problems are back again. Yoga is sham.

I would tend to agree with a small modification: yoga is a present-day fad, and unscrupulous yoga teachers have made it into a sham. And I am saying this not for making a clever statement but in all sincerity. Let me explain that.

Yoga, as it is taught and widely understood, has been reduced to doing a couple of unusual exercises of the body and/or breathing. It is not what yoga is intended to be. Leave aside the eight disciplines that yogis have prescribed for a holistic practice of yoga, even the exercise part of it calls for discipline, perseverence, inner peace and a faith in body-mind-spirit healing.
Our friend told us, he had been doing sarvangasana, halasana and surya-namaskar besides a couple of pranayams. On further prodding, we came to know that he had been trying unsuccessfully to do halasana and his posture and speed of doing surya-namaskar poses was all wrong: his breathing sequence was the opposite of what it should be.In fact, going by his age [45], history of chronic ailments and not having done exercises for a long time, he should not have tried sarvangasana at all. While he blamed the tv show for his problems, later we also came to know that he read on the web of the many benefits sarvangasana could get him and decided to do it for five minutes twice a day as was prescribed by the website. It is good that this guy has not harmed his body beyond repair and has finally understood where he went wrong. He does yoga daily - a regimen of mild exercises - and is enjoying its benefits.

So, whosoever friend happens to read it, do yoga exercises [asanas and pranayams] with due consideration and care. Use expert advice, use common sense, ask questions and only then start them. You will get unbelievable benefits of body, mind and spirit!