Wk 89 – Vayus – Pran Vayu – Practice
Prana is life force
Vayu direction of winds
This class weaves dynamic asana with breath centric movement using different Pranayama Kriyas and ratios to cultivate a greater connection to Prana and a heightening focus on the inhale pattern. Building strong standing poses, with lateral relief to open pathways to effectively receive Prana and utilise it to heal, inspire and transform. Weaving Asana, Pranayama, Mudra, Kriya, Mantra and Philosophy into a practice, I offer you a focus on being empowered with self-knowledge and skill in loving-awareness, to do your life well and fulfil your purpose of embodiment.
This is the start of a deeper understanding of how to activate, cultivate and utilise our Prana, our vital energy. Yoga is said to be the art and science of Self-Realisation by disciplining the body, mind and breath in order to gain Self-Knowledge and Cultivation of Self-Awareness. Tantra is the weaving of all experiences into a practice to cultivate as much Prana as we can and to use the tools of practice to master control over the vital energy or life-force. To acquire the power of energy, we can then heal ourselves, optimising health on all levels, boosting our energy to do our lives well and to have the clarity of mind that guides us to lasting fulfillment, contentment and liberation (Moksha). Yoga is the Mastery of Self-Knowledge and Tantra is the Mastery of Prana Power. Knowledge without power is ineffective, where as power without knowledge is dangerous! So we study and practice both.
We all know Yoga is more than just flexibility or strength in postures; it is the management of prana, the vital life force that animates all levels of being. Prana enables the body to move, regenerate, heal as well as enables the mind to think. Prana is said to be the intelligence that coordinates our senses, it helps digest information and releases that which doesn’t serve us any longer.
It is said that we have five winds, divisions or directions of of pranic energy within us.
- Pran Vayu – inward, ingesting prana
- Apana Vayu – outward, ruling the eliminating force
- Samana Vayu – consolidating and gathering in force for absorption
- Vyana Vayu – distributing and circulating prana
- Udana Vayu – inspiring and ascending prana
This week we are going to focus on PRAN VAYU which is the movement inwards (drawn in) of the fundamental energising force of our vital energy. The easiest way we can receive Prana is through the inhale, however we can receive Prana from nutrient rich foods, water, the sun, being in nature, around good stimulating people, learning and reading new things. We can have a direct sensory experience of this Vayu by inhaling, feeling prana being drawn into the chest, the region of the lungs and the anahata chakra as you fill, expand and ingest this vital energy. It also is felt in the eyes as we receive that energy which stimulates ajna chakra, therefore opening pathways that will transport sensory impressions into the mind and boosting mental clarity. Pran Vayu focuses your attention on tasks at hand. The inhale stimulates and we hold our breath to stabilise our mind to what we are focusing on. Pran Vayu is linked to your ability to receive energy which influences your speed of physical and mental movement, your motivation and your vitality in life. It also heightens your sensitivity to the world within as you follow Pran Vayu and at the same time the world around you. You realise that what is connecting you is this energy of Prana.
It is said that there are warning signs of too much of Pran Vayu which can over stimulate and derange a mind causing anxiety and more extreme manic tendencies of the mind and nervous system. With too much Pran Vayu we may suffer from cravings and addictive impulses and battle with restlessness or hyper activeness in our bodies becoming ‘Vata’ imbalanced. This Yoga practice will help to enhance, stabilise and balance the function of Pran Vayu, opening the body to deep breathing, building a strong body and mind to regulate the rate and flow of receiving this increased life-force and hopefully as a result of your effort you will feel grounded and stable yet sense a boost to your energy and mental clarity.