Yoga is a practice that promotes discipline and balance. There are many forms of yoga, such as Kundalini yoga, Ashtanga yoga, and Power yoga, which positively impact the body and promote peace within the mind and spirit.
Siddha yoga is a form of yoga that focuses on your inner self and leads you down a path of self-realization and harmony through meditation and other yoga techniques.
Origin of Siddha Yoga
Siddha yoga was founded by Guru Muktananda. The practice stems from spiritual rituals of meditations, chants, and selfless service. Gurumayi Chidvilasananda is the current spiritual head for Siddha yoga as she continues on the journey of making spiritual awakening (Shaktipat) available to seekers.
The Five Main Principles of Siddha Yoga
The five principles of Siddha yoga include meditation, chanting, selfless service, Dakshina, and preaching.
Meditation is given prime importance in Siddha yoga. A Siddha yogi is trained to focus on a specific mantra to chant, such as ‘Om Namah Shivaya’ during their practice.
Yogis engage themselves in unconditional service by volunteering in any organization of their choice. Selfless service helps yogis to follow the path that leads to enlightenment.
It is important to repay your teacher after a period of study. Therefore, the gift or Dakshina is given to the practitioner or guru by the student to express gratitude for inculcating the various values and principles in them.
Religious gatherings or Satsang are undertaken in order to spread awareness and exercise a daily practice of meditation, chanting, and spiritual teachings.
Benefits of Siddha Yoga
Siddha yoga comes with many positive advantages, especially when it comes to mental health.
Benefits of Siddha yoga include:
- Improved concentration
- Boost of happiness
- Reduced stress and feelings of anxiety
- Reduced pain from chronic illnesses
- A more positive outlook on life
- Allowance of self-realization
How Is Siddha Yoga Performed?
The following are the stages of Siddha yoga and how the poses are performed.
1. Preliminary Stage (Arambha-Avastha):
The initial stage of practice includes exercises and physical movements that use Kundalini energy. Exercises include various asanas and pranayamas to help build the energy and regularize the flow of Kundalini Shakti throughout the body.
One could feel the effects of these exercises in the mind and body as they promote feelings of happiness.
2. Ghata Avastha
In the next stage, the yogi practices to leave their materialistic desires behind and clear their mind from the materialistic world. The Prana or energy spreads all over their body and the yogi experiences and visualizes the state of divine power during this stage.
3. Parichaya Avastha
The Parichaya Avastha stage of Siddha yoga cleanses the yogi and leads them to a spiritual path as the energy within moves to the Sahasrara Chakra, present in the center of the brain.
These energies merge together and the yogi sees the universe as an embodiment of Prana. He or she controls Prana at this level of Siddha yoga and, therefore, achieves self-realization. Some Yogis may even move on to the next level of Mukti or liberation.
4. Nishpatti Avastha
In the final stage of Siddha yoga, the yogi gets in touch with their inner self and achieves the state of bliss or Samadhi. Once the yogi has reached this final state, he or she becomes neutral to their emotions and as the power of Nirvana or Moksha is experienced, the yogi realizes their purpose as they reach self-realization.
Power of Siddha Yoga
Siddha yoga is a powerful form of yoga that can promote happiness and the ability to live life with content. If you are looking to practice Siddha yoga, make sure to consult your doctor and talk to a practitioner to learn more about the practice.
Siddha yoga channelizes self-realization and promotes inner peace so you can live life with happiness and an optimistic outlook with your daily activities.
Updated by Siya Rajan on 05/12/2018
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Siddha Yoga Meditation. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.siddhayoga.org/teachings
Writer, O. S. (2017, November 01). Know about Siddha yoga. Retrieved from http://www.onlymyhealth.com/what-siddha-yoga-1327990069