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Transformational Yoga in South Africa

October 13, 2012

Transformational Yoga is a powerful system of yogic techniques that helps us centre and balance our lives in a way that keeps us naturally happy, healthy and emotionally stable.

Based on the premise that every individual has the capacity to continuously experience pure consciousness characterised by good health, emotional balance and mental and spiritual clarity, Transformational Yoga stresses the practice and awareness of key yoga postures and techniques. Its main aim is to purify the buildup of toxins lying within the five bodies and activate the dormant energy, (kundalini), resulting in spiritual awakening. This integral system was developed by Swami Vidyanand in order to activate inner resources that allow the individual to live in a state of equilibrium which lightens the pressures of contemporary living.

A carefully selected set of asana postures is practised in order to stretch the physical body. This sequence of asanas opens and cleanses the seven chakras, (life energy centres), which regulate our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual well-being. However, Transformational Yoga is much more than just asana exercises. While hatha yogic postures are practised to strengthen the physical body, pranayama breathing techniques, mantra chanting, and meditation are also an essential part of this complete yogic system. These techniques work simultaneously in order to purify and energize the chakras and balance the subtle prana energies. As a result, the effects of Transformational Yoga practice are felt immediately and are carried over into your everyday life bringing equilibrium and serenity into the physical body, emotions, mind and soul.

Four key aspects of Transformational Yoga:

  • Asanas, (yoga postures) – stretch and strengthen the body
  • Pranayama ,(breathing techniques) – detoxify and balance emotions
  • Mantra, (chants) – focus and silence the mind while awakening the chakras
  • Meditation – brings awareness of our true Self through observation.

How is Transformational Yoga different from other types of yoga?

Most styles of yoga focus their efforts in one specific direction. For example, all types of Hatha yoga focus on the physical body as the vital instrument towards perfection and realization, while Raja yoga concentrates on the mind or mental body. In a synthetic Yoga practice, such as Transformational Yoga, the most powerful techniques are combined and included to bring about complete transformation of the individual at the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual levels. Swami Vidyanand has synthesized the most powerful techniques of hatha, white tantra, raja, bhakti, mantra and kundalini yoga while developing this innovative yogic system. By using pranayama breathing, concentration, surrender and mantra within the postures an effective purification and activation of the chakras takes place. Thus Transformational Yoga works at a deeper level to release the toxins that have been accumulated through a stressful lifestyle, emotional and mental frustration. By removing these blockages the stagnant energy can be circulated and rise up to transform our natures. While Asanas are the main instrument for purification of the physical body, Pranayama is used for purification of the Vital body. In addition, growth of awareness progresses through the positive vibrations generated during mantra chanting, which is fundamental in purifying the psyche body. Meditation techniques are used to transform the mental body improving awareness and the powers of observation. Therefore Transformational Yoga manages to bring all of these powerful instruments together in order to bring about quick and enduring results.

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Article by Michelle Kaminski.

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