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Recognition of Self

Lesson 23 Module 6

Recognise the true Self.

The common understanding of meditation is to “empty the mind”. This is not really possible, after all the basic function of the basic mind is to see and react, to chatter, to move along from one piece of stimulation to another.

What we actually seek in meditation is a recognition of the higher Self which is watching the basic aspects of mind. The higher Self is always peaceful and calm, even when the basic mind is not. It is always there and its function is to observe.

It’s true that with your Ashtanga Yoga practice, you will naturally develop a body which is fit and strong and capable, with a large lung capacity and natural state of calm repose. All of this will come, but you will also be able to meditate.

When you finish your poses each day, you'll be able to do something that most people find simply impossible. That is, to sit still and close your eyes and be aware of the different aspects of your mind:

  1. The part of you that is calmly watching
  2. The visions in your imagination
  3. The inner chatter

While you are sitting, practice remembering that you have these three aspects. It is your choice which level to focus on, and yoga recommends focus on the first two levels. The more you do this, you will find yourself doing it in your regular life, and you will experience many benefits.

You will have more access to your intuition. You will find yourself enjoying the ordinary aspects of life more, and you’ll get more out of them. The routine of stretching the body and breathing deeply over and over again is the key.

Ashtanga Yoga is an efficient and safe way to grow in this direction, and all it requires is a consistent practice. We are glad to have you on board!

Pen