Discussion and practice of Yoga Nidra
Friday, June 3 · 7:00pm - 9:00pm
505 Hooper Drive NW
Fort Walton Beach, FL
7:00-8:00pm: Discussion of principles of Yoga Nidra
8:00-9:00pm: Practice of Yoga Nidra
For the first hour we will discuss the nature of Yoga Nidra both as a state of consciousness and as the process leading to that state. This conversation will be beneficial to people who are new to Yoga Nidra and to those who have been practicing for a long time. The second hour will be the actual practice itself which will be done in the meditation room of the ashram. We have lots of blankets and cushions (to go under your head), but if you have a favorite, you are welcome to bring that along. Even though it's getting warm with the coming of summer, you'll want to have a light shawl because it is common to feel a slight chill when doing this practice. At 9:00pm we'll have our daily mantras (about 3-4 minutes) and silent meditation, both of which you are welcome to stay for.
You are also welcome to join us at 5:30pm for our daily meditation at that time (#3 of 4 daily meditations). The half hour starting at 5:30pm is preparation for meditation, which included self-directed hatha asanas (postures) and breathing/pranayama. The half hour from 6:00-6:30pm is silent meditation.
The CD by Swami Jnaneshvara on Yoga Nidra is based on the ancient most tradition of the Himalayan masters, and has been the most popular in the world since its publication in 2003. Here is info on the CD:
Yoga Nidra: Extreme Relaxation of Conscious Deep Sleep
Here is an article which thoroughly describes Yoga Nidra:
FROM THE ARTICLE:
Yoga Nidra means Yogic Sleep. It is a state of conscious Deep Sleep. In Meditation, you remain in the Waking state of consciousness, and gently focus the mind, while allowing thought patterns, emotions, sensations, and images to arise and go on. However, in Yoga Nidra, you leave the Waking state, go past the Dreaming state, and go to Deep Sleep, yet remain awake. While Yoga Nidra is a state that is very relaxing, it is also used by Yogis to purify the Samskaras, the deep impressions that are the driving force behind Karma.
Yoga Nidra has been known for thousands of years by the sages and yogis. Of the three states of consciousness of Waking, Dreaming and Deep Sleep, as expounded in the Upanishads, particularly the Mandukya Upanishad, Yoga Nidra refers to the conscious awareness of the Deep Sleep state, referred to as prajna in Mandukya Upanishad. This is the third of the four levels of consciousness of AUM mantra, relating to the state represented by the M of AUM. The four states are Waking, Dreaming, sleep, and turiya, the fourth state. The state of Yoga Nidra, conscious Deep Sleep, is beyond or subtler than the imagery and mental process of the Waking and Dreaming states. As a state of conscious Deep Sleep, Yoga Nidra is a universal principle, and is not the exclusive domain of any more recent teachers or traditions.
Yoga Nidra brings an incredible calmness, quietness and clarity. Yoga Nidra is one of the deepest of all meditations, leading awareness through many levels of mental process to a state of supreme stillness and insight. The descriptions in the article below can be difficult to understand. With patient and thorough reading, the understanding is well worth the effort, allowing you to see the profound depth of Yoga Nidra, which is far beyond just relaxation. It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. Sometimes it takes thousands of words to get the inner "aha" of the meaning. Most important of all, it is the persistent practice that brings the real joy of the practice of Yoga Nidra, as with all useful practices in life and Yoga.
The form of Yoga Nidra being described in this article can be called Advanced Yoga Nidra. In recent years Yoga Nidra has been distorted in ways similar to Yoga itself. Unfortunately, almost any guided practice that brings a modicum of relaxation is now called Yoga Nidra. Therefore, it is now virtually essential that we use another term, such as Authentic Yoga Nidra, Traditional Yoga Nidra, or Advanced Yoga Nidra. I've opted for the term Advanced Yoga Nidra in this article.