Yoga Provides a Handbook

Have you ever wished that this human experience came with a handbook?  Yoga provides a handbook. We can send a rocket into space and yet still lack the skill and clarity to manage our emotions, and experience conflict-free communication, or even accepting the most fundamental law of impermanence.

The ancient science of yoga is the most accurate handbook I’ve found to help navigate life.  Yoga recognizes that there is incredible order throughout the universe, and that all of the forms we experience are the result of various, intricate patterns.

According to one yogic model –the koshas– there are five distinct “sheaths” to our embodied experience:  Our physical body, the body of vital energy, and three different layers of mind. Simply put, the conscious, subconscious and unconscious minds.  At first glance the kosha model can seem esoteric, and yet these five sheaths directly shape our day-to-day experience.

Commonly, we experience them as one swirling mass of thoughts, sensations, emotions and perception.  Often this disassembled and turbulent mass results in confusion.  The kosha model unpacks and harmonize conflated life experience from moment to moment.

The kosha model unpacks and harmonize conflated
life experience from moment to moment.

I consider the kosha model to be a cornerstone teaching for any earnest yoga practitioner.  It provides a context and structure for the many yogic practices, including asana, breath work and meditation. It fills in unseen gaps of understanding and opens the door to “Aha! I see clearly”.

If you wish to add greater depth to your yoga practice and know more about this time tested model, I invite you to attend our upcoming workshop. Yoga provides a handbook.

Taught by veteran Denver Teacher Jeremy Wolf and DYU’s Derik Eselius, this four part series will present each layer of the koshas in a theoretical and experiential format that features asana, pranayama, bandha, yoga nidrā and meditation. Familiarity with the postures is helpful.

*Article written and provided by Jeremy Wolf.