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The Purpose of Yoga - Transforming Anxiety into Self-Mastery with Pranayama

Paul M. Jerard Jr.
Nov 17, 2007
How can Yoga help you convert anxiety into something positive? How can you take charge of your life and declare self-mastery? Can Yoga really empower you to master anxiety?

Anxiety can be created by any number of situations, including your alarm clock, the commute to work, being in a large crowd, or traveling to an unfamiliar place. Mild anxiety can help us mature, and learn when to speak up for ourselves, but severe anxiety can shorten our lives.

Therefore, Yoga can enable you to respond to anxiety with solutions to protect your body and mind from the harmful effects of excessive stress. One of the greatest benefits, of all forms of Yoga, is the ability to become "self aware." Self awareness is called by many things, but this state of mind is most often called self-realization.

Yogic self-realization is being present, and mindful, of the present moment. It also allows you to recognize minor stress from severe stress. Some people feel major stress going to work on Monday. Maybe their supervisor is chronically demanding, an influential co-worker is toxic, or the "high pressure atmosphere" has taken a toll on the health of their co-workers, deadlines are unrealistic, or their job security is threatened every waking minute.

In this case, self-realization makes us realize that we can take steps to find another job. You may think, "What else can I do?" "I have no other skills" or "Easy for you to say." In truth, family physicians often tell their patients that a job change may improve their health because excessive stress is a major cause of death.

Consider this: Would you rather leave your job, or die right now? Stress causes many heart problems, suicide, high blood pressure, and more. Excessive stress will lower your immunity levels - which invites an entourage of life threatening diseases. Have you ever noticed a co-worker who is out sick all the time? Unless that person loves to take time off, the odds are, that person has a low immunity level, due to excessive stress.

Stress and anxiety can disrupt vital organs and their basic functions. Excessive stress can also cause psychological problems, which may be seen as anger, rage, and temper tantrums.

In just one Yoga class, you learn "life saving breathing" techniques (Pranayama), which can help you control anxiety - before anxiety causes you serious mental and physical harm. Pranayama literally transforms anxiety to self-mastery, but it must be practiced daily.

Anxiety is nervous energy (fuel) - while Pranayama serves the body and mind, much like a furnace. Use anxiety as fuel, with Pranayama and regular Hatha Yoga practice.

Copyright 2007 - Paul Jerard / Aura Publications
About the Author
Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, is a co-owner and the director of Yoga teacher training at: Aura Wellness Center in, Attleboro, MA. He is an author of many books on the subject of Yoga and has been a certified Master Yoga teacher since 1995.

http://www.yoga-teacher-training.org
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