Practitioners and teachers have long described the numerous mental and physical benefits of yoga and meditation practice. A recent scientific study measuring the electrical activity in the brain of those practicing a specific meditative practice, taught in Isha Foundation’s Inner Engineering program, provides scientific evidence to support some of these claims. The self-realized yogi and the founder of Isha Foundation, Sadhguru Vasudev, will be visiting Houston May 4-6, 2012 to conduct this Inner Engineering yoga and meditation program, which offers a powerful possibility to balance and align one's inner energies, leading to enhanced joy as well as improved physical and mental wellbeing.
The Inner Engineering program includes interactive discussions, guided meditations, a set of simple, gentle asanas (yoga poses) and the transmission of Shambhavi Mahamudra kriya. Shambhavi Mahamudra is a 21-minute practice that greatly accelerates spiritual transformation and can have powerful physiological benefits as well. The kriya is an ancient internal energy process that functions as a catalyst for spiritual growth. When practiced regularly, the Shambhavi Mahamudra kriya will support health and inner wellbeing the rest of one’s life.
The study¹ of the brain activity of meditators demonstrated dramatic changes in electrical wave patterns in the brain after just 21 minutes of Shambhavi practice. These results included marked increases in the slow frequency delta and theta wave patterns characteristic of deep relaxation, and increased activity in areas of the brain important for alertness and focus. The EEG study also found marked increases in synchronization of wave patterns in the right and left sides of the brain. Referred to as 'whole-brain synchronization,' this phenomenon is commonly associated with more efficient and effective mental processing capabilities, including heightened mental clarity and sharper discrimination, better learning ability, and increased creativity.
In a 2010 survey of 536 practitioners of Shambhavi, 86% reported reductions in stress and anxiety with 91% of respondents saying they felt a deeper sense of overall peace. 80% of practitioners in the study also felt they had improved mental clarity and 70% reported increased mental concentration.
Participants of Sadhguru's Inner Engineering program not only report feeling much happier as a result, they also commonly express greatly reduced levels of stress and anxiety, increased mental-alertness, enhanced focus and self-awareness. “I am happier with life and more accepting, I am more responsible and somehow more in tune with everything,” shared a recent participant of the Inner Engineering program. “I've become a much more confident and positive person, able to think clearly and deal with complicated situations and emotionally sensitive issues,” explained another.
According to Sadhguru, the 10,000-year-old science of yoga understands the human system not just as a physical body, but as five layers of body. These five layers are the physical body, mental body, pranic energy body, etheric body and bliss body. It is alignment of the bodies, the koshas, that allows a yoga practitioner to experience the bliss at the core of human life.
“The reason why most people in the world do not know joy is that the physical, the mental, and the ‘pranic’ or the energy-body, are not in alignment. The core of you is joy; over that there are four layers. If they are properly aligned, a natural expression, an overwhelming expression of joyfulness will naturally happen within a human being," explained Sadhguru in a recent introductory talk. "People may achieve this state in so many ways. Someone is listening to music and at a certain moment he experiences joyfulness because in that moment his physical body, mind, energy, everything is focused in one direction, and suddenly, a burst of joyfulness happens within. Maybe somebody is dancing, it happens with him. Maybe somebody is looking at something beautiful, it happens to him. These are all different ways that it may happen. Now (in Inner Engineering programs) we are looking at the technology of keeping these three bodies constantly aligned so that joyfulness is not an accidental happening; joyfulness becomes a normal condition, a natural way of living for you."
¹Manveer Bhatia et al. Neurophysiological and Biochemical evaluation in practitioners of Isha Yoga. World Conference – Expanding Paradigms: Science, Consciousness and Spirituality February 2006
For more information on the Houston program, visit www.innerengineering.com/Houston