As we practice it today, Yoga can be understood as the process of breathing into movement. Whatever first drew us to Yoga class, many people find themselves returning for the experience of plugging into an elusive but ineffable something, something we find at the core of ourselves, and yet instinctively understand to be more than ourselves.
Whether we call it energy, or just community, we long for this experience as human beings, and we seek it on the Yoga mat, as well as in nature, and in the arts.
Long ago, the ancients found this experience in sounds. In Sanskrit, the language of Yoga, the sounds, the actual phonemes, have value of their own, prior to and separate from the meaning of the words they form when put together. That’s why the sound of Om, that we so often make together at the outset of our yoga classes, can’t really be translated. It doesn’t mean something, it is something.
It may seem esoteric at first, but think about it – physics understands that vibration is the core of all matter that exists, and the most tangible, everyday, completely not exotic way to experience vibration is as sound.
Whether you are drawn to making music with your friends, or singing around a campfire with your children, or just lying in the grass, reveling in the resonance of the wind in the trees, you are tapping into the principles of Mantra.
Want to dive deeper into Mantra? Alongside its regular offerings of level 2 asana and alignment inquiry, this installment of the Myths & Methods course series will introduce the art of Mantra. We’ll consider its history and theory, varying approaches to Mantra practice, and work through asana sequences designed to enhance your ability to absorb the riches offered by this most subtle and powerful gift of yoga. Find out more and sign up now!