Yoga and the Nature Elemental Yoga
Nature elemental is how Thoreau described the forces of nature in his book, Walden, which was written in Walden Pond and published in 1854. I like the term so much that I use it as the name of one of my poses in my yoga practice, called Tree Pose or Vrksasana in Sanskrit. I believe that when we connect to our inner elemental nature, we tap into a powerful energy force that connects us back to something bigger than ourselves, which can be directly experienced through yoga and meditation practices.
A Way to Connect with Nature: It’s difficult to find a more nature elemental connection than that between humans and nature. While it was once commonplace for us all to get down on our hands and knees—literally, or even just figuratively—to feel nature as part of our very being, our disconnection from wilderness has only grown since modern life took hold. But yogis knew better: For them, being connected to nature was critical. And yoga itself is steeped in nature mysticism.
We’re drawn to water for its purity and connection to life. To connect with water, you may want to start drinking more H2O (that’s the water elemental code for drinking more water). Though it can seem odd at first, staying hydrated helps your body function properly.
Yoga is not just physical exercise. It is a much more holistic practice that provides balance to all aspects of your life. As we embody our yoga, we’re intrinsically connected to nature through our minds, bodies, and spirits. Yoga helps us connect with what yogis consider the nature elemental. If you pay attention to how you feel during your yoga practice, you will notice that many of your thoughts are about things outside yourself—concerns for others or for other creatures in distress.
In yoga, Vayu refers to air. The circulation of energy in the body can be likened to air movement around us, in our environment. When vayu is flowing smoothly, we are filled with lightness and strength; however, when vayu becomes stagnant or moves into blockages (knots), we may feel uncomfortable or even be unable to move freely. Yoga poses help us experience a variety of sensations associated with blocked/unblocked vayus.
According to Hindu mythology, there are five basic elements: water, fire, earth, air, and ether. The nature elemental energies are thought to be present in every cell of your body and provide natural healing energy. This practice is a great one for everyone – no matter your religion or spiritual orientation – as it creates a greater connection between your physical self and its cosmic counterpart. Here’s how you can work with Earth’s elemental energy
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