Practicing, Feeling, Understanding – From Inside
Vijnana Yoga is the art and practice of moving from inside. By cultivating presence and deep inner listening, Vijnana teaches us a new way of being. We learn to relinquish our tight hold on doership, and sit in the seat of the observer. We learn to experience the meeting of opposites with equanimity. And, we learn that we are more than the stories we tell ourselves. Yoga becomes a way of being as the lessons learned on the mat seep into every aspect our lives.
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There are four pillars of Vijnana Yoga:
The asana practice is based on the Vijnana Yoga Syllabus and is guided by the Seven Vital Principles and the inner vayus revealing natural ease and true alignment.
The extensive practice of pranayama utilizes the natural breath in a unique way. By practising the vayus, we gradually master the classical pranayama forms.
Meditation inspires deep listening, which is the ground for Vijnana (understanding from inside). In the Vijnana practice, there is no incorrect way to “just sit”.
The study of yogic texts integrate our intuitions and understanding into a more comprehensive view of life thus our path.
Origin of the term “Vijnana Yoga”
According to the great Vedantist philosopher Sankara, vijnana is a deep understanding or knowing that cannot come about merely through outer knowledge. Even the knowledge expounded by our teachers and the inspiration we receive from spiritual texts is not enough. Vijnana is when inner clarity is revealed through personal experience.
Ramakrishna explains vijnana thus: “The awareness and conviction that fire exists in wood is jñana (knowledge). But to cook rice on that fire, eat the rice and get nourishment from it is vijñana.”
Source: With permission of Vijnana Yoga International