What is Samayoga?
Samayoga –The practices and disciplines that bring us to harmony and balance in all aspects of life as well as understanding the choices that bring us equanimity.
Sama Yoga is taught intuitively from the heart, it’s a practice that brings you back to yourself, to land in relaxation, trust and contentment with whatever your life brings. Samayoga brings balance and health physically, mentally and emotionally.
What does Sama Yoga mean to me?
“In asana class it means being more attentive with inner alignment than outer alignment. Performing the asanas with a deep respect and love for your body and accepting it for what it is that day. Getting away from a mechanical, stiff, stuck up type of movement to one that is organic and all accepting, allowing the body to give itself what it needs.
As a teacher Samayoga means respecting and accepting the
students for who they are and understanding there is a reason for all they do in asanas and behavior. Teaching from a place of devotion, self love and acceptance. In a subtle form that is implicit in how and what you say. It means delivering the class from a desire to share what has blessed you rather than a desire to “fix” the students.
In life, Sama Yoga means continuing the pursuit of Truth through self knowledge, living within dharma (universal values) and staying true to your values. It means accepting yourself and people as they are without any agenda to change them. Not acting from a place of reaction, keeping our Devotee up, embracing fear, being mindful of our words and keeping our words and thoughts and actions in a straight line.
Samayoga vision in a nutshell:
To provide support and training in all aspects of Yoga. Offering teaching that is based on the Vedas and guided by a traditional teacher, one who has been living a life of yoga for many years, has practiced all the disciplines and has integrated them into daily life. Encouraging self -development, study, practice, and living according to Universal Values and Vedic values. Emphasizing knowledge of oneself, the world and God, and understanding what is the purpose of life and the common human goal.
Clear Yoga definition
One meaning is “upayah” – a means to reach an end, the end being emotional maturity, objectivity. The means are dictated in Bhagavad Gita – Value of Values, Yama Niyama, disciples of Asana and 5 daily sacrifices are all included in the meaning and need to be discovered by the student.
A life that is balanced, free from extremes, recognizing oneself as a spiritual person, taking guidance from Gita and Teacher who has assimilated and followed the disciplines.
How is Samayoga taught?
Teaching Samayoga includes the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects, therefore the teachers go through a complete course of training and are required to work with themselves on all levels, have a steady practice of yoga, mantras, prayers, and listening to spiritual teachings (Vedanta).
Having absorbed and assimilated the teachings, practiced well and consistently for years, Samayoga then flows intuitively from the heart of the teacher who is relaxed and open, totally present, and responding to the students needs. The teacher will draw from their own life experiences and offer a class that is aligned with assimilated yoga principles and also allows their own creativity and passions to shine through.
Physical healing and stabilizing through Hatha Yoga.
The physical presentation of Samayoga is an integration of Hatha Yoga, Kriyas, Qi gong and heart opening mantras, intuitively delivered in a relaxed way, that honors the students and lets them feel comfortable being themselves, the whole way through.
There’s a sense of continuous flow even in the stillness, the poses lead gracefully from one to another allowing the practitioner to go deeply into the sensations and feel the more subtle aspects of the poses. Guidance is given in an appropriate way, enough to direct students to set up the pose correctly, then pay attention to specific aspects and feelings in the body.
2) Emotional growth using wisdom of the Vedas and Bhagavat-Gita in a practical appropiate way.
The emphasis of yoga is about growth. One grows through meeting challenges and overcoming obstacles. Ultimately it’s a cognitive journey, owning up one’s emotions and learning how to express them in a healthy way. We learn how to take responsibility for our own life situation, which includes settling account with our dark side, accepting our past and find forgiveness in our hearts.
Living a Yoga life helps us to see our holding patterns expressed in our bodies as tension and pain, expressed in our behavior as lies and complications and ongoing conflicts. Yoga can also help one to break free from this suffering and establish new, healthy habits based on Universal Values and teachings from the Vedas. For this reason Samayoga teacher trainings include the study of Puja (sacred ritual and offering), and learning how to effectively pray, bringing devotion into our life in a meaningful way. Understanding that prayer is only for the individual to grow and expression of our emotions in a healthy way (Dama). The metaphor of a blooming lotus helps us see that from the mud and decay grows a most beautiful flower. This is our heart when we allow the yoga to work, to nourish and fertilize our desire for freedom from suffering.
Samayoga includes the study of Vedas and Bhagavat Gita as these are the primary authorities of yoga life. We look into the verses with a teacher who has the key and can unlock the meaning of the scriptural words. We listen and discover how brilliantly they guide us to live a lifestyle of yoga, which means: balanced, healthy, bright and emotionally stable in and through life’s many challenges.
These sacred texts teach us about what is the essence, the nature of oneself, the world and God, and that all three are really one non-dual being. With that knowledge our hearts relax in fearlessness (moksa). The teachings help us to gain objectivity, seeing the big picture and not getting lost in the forest of emotions. They emphasize understanding the Value of non-injury, truthfulness and many more ethical values common to all human beings. Without this there can be no yoga, it will remain a mechanical exercise program.
Spirituality, understand what it means and why it is important
When the students are ready and in their hearts they truly wish to know, “What is the goal of life? Is there a defectless goal? (nirdosha sadhyam)” they are prepared to listen to Vedanta, the end portion of the Vedas, also called Upanisads, which deals with Atma-jnana (self-knowledge), liberation from all forms of suffering through understanding that the individual is not separate from the total. This teaching is super therapy! In the understanding that you’re better than the best, a very powerful transformation takes place, and the student who stays with this study for some time will erase all sense of emotional disease, smallness, separation and doubts about who they are essentially.
Teaching Vedanta requires many years of study with a traditional teacher who has a clear understanding of this most subtle of topics, and can handle the words with the utmost care and accuracy so the student doesn’t get further confused or lost on another trip. This is immediate knowledge, that we are absolutely ok in and through all the human conditions, and this knowledge will profoundly impact the one who listens and understands this fact.
This teaching is rare, and the teacher is also rare, which means the one who can stay steady and understand is also rare and exceptionally blessed!
Living, teaching and practicing yoga in this way will help us be in harmony and balance – which I remember now is the actual definition of Sama Yoga 🙂” /Erin Petaski, Sama Yoga Teacher in Manitoba, Canada
“The teacher sensed my needs and delivered just what i wanted” is a common feeling after a SamaYoga class. It’s is a wonderful middle way and closest to Hatha yoga flow style, that offers clear guidance thru all aspects of yoga and each session is tailored to meet the students where they are at. Some classes will be primarily focused on relaxation poses with special guidance on how to feel and release holding patterns. Other classes will be more invigorating and challenging, but with the teachers help it can be highly enjoyable, flow easily and very accessible to all levels of experience.”