YOGA & Ayurveda for Autumn
Updated: Nov 20, 2020
"If we surrendered to earth's intelligence, we could rise up rooted, like trees." • Rainer Maria Wilker The Philosophy of Yoga reminds us that we are not a part of nature, we are nature, the Sanskrit word for this is Prakriti. Prakriti or the natural world is always changing, going through cycles, readjusting, finding balance before shifting, and changing again. Prakriti or Nature at a fundamental level is made up of the five elements; ether, air, fire, water, and earth. These elements are within us and all around us.
Each part of a cycle; parts of the day, seasons of the year, seasons of our lives, have a different balance of these elements. During the Autumn season, the elements that are most prevalent are air and ether. Their corresponding qualities are movement, change, dryness, coldness, excitement, anticipation & anxiety. You can feel and see this in the dryness of the leaves and grasses and the cold crispness of the Autumn wind. The dominance of air and ether in the world around us leads to an increase in those qualities within our own minds and bodies. Just as the squirrels and chipmunks are scurrying around, anxious about preparing for the coming Winter, we also can feel the anxiety and excitement that comes with this time of year.
To cultivate balance and harmony within our own life during this time it is important to counter the flurry of movement and anticipation by slowing ourselves down, doing the things we need to do but letting go of the extra activities. It's easy to get caught up in the high energy and then get burnt out. We are intuitively drawn to activities and foods that balance the season when we reach for that extra sweater, warm cup of ginger tea, prepare hearty soups, and stews. Anything that brings more warmth and hydration can help to create balance, ease, and health in our systems.
The best Yoga practices for this time of year are ones that calm and soothe the anxious mind while also building your internal fire to balance out the fast pace and cold winds. Practices that calm the anxious mind and release tension from your body include, slow mindful movements, Therapeutic, Yin and Restorative poses, diaphragmatic breathing with longer exhalations, and yoga Nidra (guided meditations). You can increase your internal fire through Energizing and Strengthening practices that include breathing practices that are warming and activating. Along with our regular weekly classes, we have some wonderful offerings this Autumn to help keep your body and mind in balance during this season of change. We look forward to connecting with you soon.
May You be Happy, Healthy and Free from Suffering.
Freia & David