About the importance of breathing
It is easy to know what is going through someone’s mind if you pay attention to the way they breathe: a fast respiration usually means that one feels agitated: for whatever reason.
Your respiration is the bridge that connects your body to your mind. There are 8 steps in Yoga to achieve Moskha, the liberation, which is the final goal:
1. Yamas: is your behavior towards others.
2. Niyamas: is your behavior towards yourself
3. Asana, which is the posture of meditation. The goal of the many postures of Yoga is to be able to hold a sitting position during a long meditation, without feeling uncomfortable,
4. Pranayama: the way you breathe. It means “control of your respiration”.
5. Pratyahara: which is the effort to draw your attention inwards, instead of outwards: look at yourself and feel your body
6. Dharana is the conscious effort to not give into distractions, either of the senses or of the mind
7. Dhyana means to be able to stay focused, to be able to hold your meditation for long periods
8. Samadhi, the final step: the Moksha, the liberation, to transcend and merge with God. It has been described as a state of ecstasy.
This steps must be achieved in order, one first, and then the other, one by one. Pranayama, is the middle step: the one that connects the ones related to the body to the ones related to the mind.
Love is not attachment: all the great masters said it, from Jesus to the Old Sages of India: you should love expecting nothing in return. When we have expectations about something, for example, when we love seeking love in return, we do not truly love. This is just desire, and desire is the root of misery. When you hope for nothing, then nothing can make you suffer. It is only natural to seek things for ourselves: we love to be loved, we work to live comfortably. But true liberation urges us to work against our impulses. Be selfless; give yourself to others without expecting anything in return and you will be set free.
What is Love?
Swami Vivekananda, an old sage from the late 1800 in India asked this question: have you seen God? But God doesn’t appear in front you saying I’m God, worship me. So, how would you know if you had seen him? Through meditation you can learn that God is in everyone and everything and the state of liberation is to feel him all around you, and inside you. The Moksha is the realization of one’s own divine nature. But there is no space for laziness, to achieve the Jivamukti state, one must practice: meditate and meditate some more.
Have you seen God?
Yoga has many benefits that can be summed in 3: physical, therapeutic and spiritual. The physical benefits are the first to come, for they come after any physical effort: they are the same of aerobics or running: more strength and flexibility. The practice of Hatha Yoga can cure several diseases, and many doctors recommend it to help the muscles heal from injuries. It also soothes the mind and helps with depression and anxiety among other affections. Those are the therapeutic benefits. But the most important benefit is the spiritual one. Any exercise can increase your stamina, strength and flexibility and many medicines can cure diseases. But the union of body and mind is the one goal that can only be reached through Yoga, no matter what type you practice.
The benefits of Yoga
Renounce does not mean being easy going or let yourself be pushover. Renounce is accepting the things that can’t possibly be changed with a good attitude: is keeping your mind calm and not allow it to go crazy with thoughts. The important thing is keep your mind calm, not letting the outside alter your inside. You might be running, busy with your daily obligations, but your mind is calm and your soul is happy. That is what detachment means. “Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions” The Dalai Lama