The Cultivation & Protection of Shakti
For a Yogi or Yogini engaged on the inward path of self improvement, Self realization or Divine communion, the harnessing of energy or Shakti along with the maintenance & protection of that energy becomes a vital and necessary objective.
It is the nature of this world to deplete our energy stores with the senses constantly drawing us outward leading to a loss of Shakti and depletion of Ojas. When we lose our energy, we don’t feel good, we are more prone to illness and most importantly we risk disconnecting from our higher self resulting in us not embodying who and what we really wish to embody.
How then does the Sadhaka or spiritual practitioner cultivate and protect their energy while staying engaged in the world? Ayurveda & Yoga are powerful bodies of knowledge providing us with innumerable practices to cultivate and sustain our energy in these turbulent and depleting times.
Ayurveda teaches us that our body is unique and different from every other body and that the way we eat, the herbs and medicines we take and the actions we perform throughout the day should be tailored to our own particular body type or constitution. What I need to take care of myself may be quite different than what my best friend needs. By learning about our individual body type or doshic configuration (Vata/Pitta/Kapha) and following the Ayurvedic principles which nurture our unique constitution, we are able to nurture our energy stores and build Ojas (loosely translated as immunity) allowing us to feel stronger in our ability to resist the stress of this world.
Furthermore, by learning Yoga – all eight limbs of Yoga – which expand well beyond the physical postures of Asana, we are able to build a particular type of energy called Prana. This energy is gracefully harnessed from yogic practices leading us feel alive, alert, aware, light and full of energy making way for the Divine presence to permeate our being. The eight limbs of yoga include, the 1) Yamas & 2) Niyamas, which are considered moral precepts (examples include devotion, truthfulness, not stealing, cleanliness etc), 3) Asana (yogic postures), 4) Pranayama (breathing practices), 5) Pratyahara (drawing the senses inward), 6) Dharana (focused concentration), 7) Dhyana (meditation), & 8) Samadhi (blissful absorption into the Divine presence).
As we implement the ancient tools of the mystics to cultivate and protect our Shakti, we find ourselves happier, healthier and able to actualize our Divine potential. Life becomes a playground in which we are free to do as and what we like. Our creativity and passions begins to flourish, our inner fire tended; we set intentions and watch them manifest gracefully. We become Divine servants, lifting others out of the suffering and heaviness of the mundane, liberating ourselves and our loved ones just by being and embodying ourselves. We become free in all aspects but most importantly we attain an inner freedom, joy and bliss which is treasure far beyond any worldly achievement.