Savage Lamb Philosophy

Yoga was traditionally passed down from Guru to Student in ancient times in India. There were few students at a time, and maybe only one per teacher. This relationship was intense as the Guru was to be trusted and honored at all times and through all decisions to help you on your inner spiritual path. So, choosing your Guru was an important job, as you gave much of your trust over to another person. The Guru you trusted would have  started their spiritual path at an early age and had been living the austere life for many years. The system of teaching would closely resemble their own experience they had received as a student, and the student may not have received much in the way of verbal directions but instead were lead to practices where they learned from experience.

Today there is a different structure in the West with Yoga. One difference is, that there are numerous teachers and numerous students. Also, the goal of the student and the goal of the teacher may differ from the past. It is more common that a student is looking for a “workout”, or to “look better” or to become more flexible, or to help with balance, both mental and physical. Emotional growth and inner awareness are byproducts that may start to show through the practice of Yoga, but it is often not the initial goal. The teacher’s goal may be different than the past as well, being motivated by money, prestige or fame. Regardless of the original reasons on both sides, through mindful practice, gradually our inner “seer,” or the unbiased witness, starts to come to the surface more and more. Both teacher and student start to relax the connection to the ego. The Ego is always present to navigate in this world, but the attachment to its perspective eases, and one starts to feel freer from the “Merry-go-Round” trip of our cause and effect responses in life.

Choosing to come to Yoga classes is a bigger adventure than may have initially been conceived. Yoga is not a religion, but is a scientific system in which to cleanse the mind and body to become open to your heart, to let the energies travel fluidly through the body. It is a way to sense all the layers of your inner to outer space, and to move through the world with more awareness, making conscious choices through life.

It is important as a student of Yoga, which we can be all of our lives, to cultivate your inner teacher. We need to listen to instructions in class or in our home practice with discernment, to feel the truths or untruths for our mind body connection in each moment. Your aim in Yoga can be to instill and teach your mind and body to pay attention to your inner wisdom. This wisdom can be accessed by learning to “listen” to more concrete parts of yourself, these being, your body’s sensations and your mind’s activities.
Using the breath as a tool to sandwich your mind to body helps connect with the wisdom layer of your being.

If we access Yoga philosophy regarding the Koshas, or layers of our existence, layers surrounding our Atman (Self), we can start to imagine or create a paradigm to understand our being as separate parts of a whole. In order of their connection to us, let’s start with Annamaya Kosha, as the human body and its needs on this earth, then Pranamaya Kosha, as the air or vital wind and energy of life, next is the manomaya Kosha, which is that pertaining to the mind, forth is Vijnanamaya Kosha, which is that of wisdom and inner knowing, lastly, is Anandamaya Kosha, the Bliss body.

When we use the Prana or breath to connect with the Physical body and the Mental body, this creates the awareness of the Wisdom body, thereby supporting deep discernment in our life. It is by connecting Mind/Body with Breath, that space is created in the mind, and body as if inflating space between each cell in the body.

When your practice is centred around connecting with your Vijnanamaya Kosha or wisdom body, your inner teacher is guiding you. Let this be your aim in your Yoga practice and during Yoga classes. This way you will always be learning your own deep truths.