Oftentimes the translation of Yoga Nidra is to ‘yogic sleep.’ which is not totally incorrect, though not exactly right on either. Yoga Nidra is actually referred to as a state of consciousness where one does not sleep at all but is a deeply meditative, connected state of being, and this is called ‘turiya.’ One of the ancient Vedantic texts from India, The Mandukya Upanishad provides the practice and understanding of Yoga Nidra. Within this text there have been described four states of consciousness: waking, ‘turiya’, dreaming then deep sleep. Therefore, in yoga nidra, one does not sleep but is also beyond the mental body, or the intellectual body, where he/she might see images or be dreaming. they are also not completely unconscious, as in deep sleep.
Here is to the deeper understanding of Yoga Nidra
Here is an understanding of the koshas, or 5 bodies, from yoga philosophy that is also helpful to understand the practice. Mainly, the goal is to utilize the body, the mind, and the prana body so that it can reach deeper levels, or koshas, of bliss body, and you may even say connection with our self or soul. And it does not take an understanding of the philosophy to practice – anyone can do it and experience its deep benefits.
Meditation is a powerful and effective way for making space and time to digest these subtler life experiences or even those that are not so subtle and Yoga Nidra is a type of meditation. There are so many ways to meditate and per my understanding, meditation is really any concentration practice that is brought to a point where the object of concentration can be released or merged with.
How does Yoga Nidra Works
Yoga Nidra works on a specific formula, in most cases through a guided script which is read to you by a teacher, that helps in guiding you into a deeply relaxed state and uses the body and images as a point of concentration. As the physical body is so comfortable and calm that it becomes even easier to achieve a state of union or bliss.
So, let’s further understand the Sanskrit term, “Ojas”. Ojas in Ayurveda are most often used to refer to our innate immunity. Our strength, or the energy reserves and resiliency. Ojas is considered to be a real substance in the body similar to honey, or oil as golden, liquid, oily and soft and Juiciness like them. Ojas also acts like our aura which keeps on protecting us from energetically draining circumstances as well. We are all born into this world with some specific amount of super-fine ojas, known as para-ojas. However, we can cultivate it in its more gross form inside the body (apara-ojas) with the help of food and activities which strengthen and build us up or we can just also deplete this with activities that have the opposite qualities.
It always circles back to digestion.
This kind of ojas is the end product of good digestion. And do keep in mind that digestion does not only mean our ability to absorb and assimilate foodstuff in our bellies. Foodstuff is anything that experiences, sensations, life are coming in through all 5 senses.
The power to digest anything and everything is dependent on the strength of our agni, roughly translated as our digestive ‘fire.’ Agni needs space to grow, to function, to conflagrate. Space is the primary element. Space is needed to be made out of strong digestion like think of seasonally cleansing and conscious fasting.
Healing Powers of Bliss
Our body needs to be comfortable physically when preparing for a Yoga Nidra session. All sorts of props and pillows are welcome to make one well comfy. The physical body acts as a host of distractions to our spiritual practices. In Yoga Nidra, the motive is to be so comfortable and relaxed that it makes it easy to move beyond the gross body and into more subtle layers.
It has been proven through multiple scientific studies that when the body is so immensely relaxed that the parasympathetic nervous system response is stimulated. It is in this state of functioning that the body is able to rest and repair and heal. There is a decrease in heart rate, inflammation, stress hormone release, and anxiety, and a simultaneous increase in dopamine production was found in the brain, the hormone related to pleasure, contentment, and bliss.
How Does All This Concerns Fertility?
During the preparation for conception, Ayurvedic texts mention that it is very essential for both partners to balance their doshas as much as possible, and remove toxins or ama via cleansing. A vital part of cleansing is post-cleanse – rejuvenation. Creating a baby (literally, for mom) is one of the most energetically luxurious things her body might need to do. That growing flower is going to take all the extra energy and ‘stuff’ the mother has in her body. The Cells need to eat so that they can grow. There have to be enough energy reserves to make it all happen. Ojas are vitally essential for conception and pregnancy.
If you have Pitta/Vata prakriti, or nature. And you are looking to conceive in the early Autumn, a naturally Vata-aggravated time of year. You will feel the nourishment and warmth of summer and harvest season which would carry some strength over to you. Though you would definitely need all the help you can get when it comes to balancing Vata dosha, and nourishing your energy reserves – just naturally, due to my nature. Vata dosha is balanced via stillness, warmth, and steadiness. Stability, as well as heaviness, also balances Pitta dosha and the exhausting intensity associated with the fire element.
During a formal training for Yoga Nidra, you would have spent a few hours per day, for four days, lying down in a warm cozy spot guided by soothing, loving voices – when the teachers recommended a 40-day sadhana of Yoga Nidra once you go home, onto which you should gladly embark on. And then just a week you tend to easily conceive.