Yoga poses are named after nature, warriors and sages. They have powerful symbolism and messages in their names that we can take from and use in everyday life. The messages or stories behind each pose can teach us things about ourselves and life.
Poses are deeper and more powerful than we may realise. We can receive guidance from yoga through the knowledge our bodies hold. All we need to do is listen.
Your yoga practice can be as deep as you allow it to be. Always be open to learn more, you can learn so much about yourself, your relationships and life through yoga. Here are examples of three yoga poses and the wisdom they offer:
Balasana – Childs Pose
Bala means child and asana means pose. In Balasana, we are in a shape similar to that of an embryo. We are representing the child in the womb, the beginning of life. It is a resting and nourishing pose where we are in an 'innocent' and receptive state.
We surrender to the earth, with our head bowed down to the ground. Here, we can let go of expectations and we can let go of our ego. When we surrender, we open ourselves up to give and to receive and we become more in tune with our true spirit and cultivate a pure childlike quality.
Natarajasana – Dancer Pose
A standing balancing pose named after the king dancer, which symbolizes the ancient dance of Shiva.
Samsara is the cycles of life. We can think of samsara also as patterns and habits we get stuck in throughout our lives that may no longer serve us. This cycle of samsara does not trouble Shiva, instead he sees it as a rhythm to dance to.
We must let go of the fear of change that we have. Embrace change in your life, and dance to the cycle of life. In Natarajasana, we are balancing and opening our hearts in a backbend, which requires bravery and openness.
If we backbend and balance with a sense of freedom like Shiva, we can embrace freedom and change in our minds and hearts. We can live without fear.
Dhanurasana – Bow Pose
The body is bent backwards to symbolise the shape of an archers bow. It is quite a strong backbend that requires openness and fearlessness and so it's important to find balance with just the right amount of intensity.
This principle can be used in our lives when we are faced with challenges or struggles. We must apply just the right amount of effort to the situation.
Instead of being judgmental or angry with certain stressful people and situations in our lives, we must challenge our ego and rise above it. The Bow pose creates an opportunity to have balance, be fearless and to not give in to difficulties.
What's your favorite yoga pose and what wisdoms have you learned from it?