In yoga philosophy, we are taught that each of us is made up of 5 layers, or five koshas. The outermost layer is the food (physical) body. The next layer is the physiological (energetic) body. Beyond that is our emotional body, our intellectual body, and our innermost layer is our blissful body. What happens to one layer affects the others.
Some things rest on the surface — on the physical body, we may get a cut or a scrape, and heal quickly.
But, when things fester on deeper layers, they cause more profound effects.
For example, when our interests or passions are stymied, we experience apathy and disconnection. While this is not often recognized as the problem itself, we often see its effects in terms of the outer layers — depression or anxiety (emotional body) which affects our immune system (physiological body), and even possibly our posture (physical body).
We are complex beings, indeed.
Engaging in a learning process is not just healthy…it’s necessary. In order to awaken our hearts, minds, and bodies, diving into spiritual learning is one of the most healthy activities we can engage in.
This is the heart of another yogic principle: svadhyaya, or Self-study.
The purpose of spiritual study is to gain knowledge of the true self…or, in the clever term of the mystics, gnosis.
To know thyself is the greatest gift we can give to another.
Learning is an extraordinary process. It keeps the mind and heart engaged, especially when you learn something you are passionate about.
As a lifelong teacher and student, I’ve been fortunate to be on both sides of this coin… immersed in topics I adore, and teaching subjects that fuel my fire.
I’ve also seen what it’s like when people struggle with learning, or worse, when they’re not engaged in learning anything at all.
This is the reason why participating in a yoga teacher training is far more than just professional development. It addresses all the layers of the body, including the intellectual layer which stimulates connection, engagement, and passion.
In short, it’s a priceless process of Self-knowledge that fuels the fire of the spirit.
On the pathway to discovering our bliss is a lifetime of learning…as a #ModernMystic, committing yourself to the practice of svadhyaya is an important first step.
Become a lifelong learner with me!
Watch the video below to learn all about the five koshas, how they work, what they are, and how to heal and balance them. This is an amazing element of yoga philosophy, and essential for the #ModernMystic who is interested in looking past the surface to create deep healing and lasting transformation.
Resources and Links
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