the true science and art of living
the true science and art of living
As per the scriptures one who performs the Surya Namaskaram daily does not get poor in a thousand births
Surya Namaskaram is a well known vital technique within the yogic repertoire. Its versatility and application make in one of the most useful methods to induce a healthy, vigorous and active life. Surya Namaskaram is almost a complete sadhana in itself, containing asana, pranayama and meditational techniques within the main structure of the practice.
Surya Namaskaram is a series of 12 physical postures. These alternating backward and forward bending asanas flex and stretch the spinal column and limbs through their maximum range. The series gives such a profound stretch to the whole of the body that few other forms of exercise can be compared with it.
The 12 postures of Surya Namaskaram
1. Pranamasana (Prayer pose) – exhale
2. Hasta Uttanasana (Raised arm pose) – inhale
3. Padahastasana (Hand to foot pose) – exhale
4. Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian pose) – inhale
5. Parvatasana (Mountain pose) – exhale
6. Ashtanga Namaskaram (Salution with eight limbs) – retain
7. Bhujanngasana (Serpent pose) – inhale
8. Parvatasana (Mountain pose) – exhale
9. Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian pose) – inhale
10. Padahastasana (Hand to foot pose) – exhale
11. Hasta Uttanasana (raised arms pose) – inhale
12. Pranamasana (Prayer pose) – exhale
This constitutes half a round of Surya Namaskaram. To complete the other half, the same movements are performed, the only variation being that the left leg is brought back in position (4), and the right leg moved forward in position (9). So, one full round consists of 24 movements, 2 sets of 12, giving a balance to each side of the body in each half round. When position 12 is completed, inhale while lowering the hands to the side of the body and then commence the second half of the practice with exhalation.
When and Where to Practice
1. The ideal time to practise Surya Namaskaram is at Sunrise, the most peaceful time of the day, when the atmosphere is full of the Sun’s ultraviolet rays, which is important for the body.
2. Make a habit of rising early, answering the call of nature, taking a bath and practising Surya Namaskaram.
3. Whenever possible, practise in the open air, wearing light and loose clothing to allow the skin to breath and absorb the Sun’s energy.
4. Surya Namaskaram is ideally practised facing sunrise on a blanket spread over the floor or ground.
5. If it is not possible in the early morning, then practise can be done at any convenient time, provided the stomach is empty.
6. No food should be taken for at least three to four hours beforehand.
1. There are no limitations as far as age is concerned.
2. Surya Namaskaram should not be practised by people with high blood pressure, coronary artery disease or those who have had stroke, hernia or intestinal tuberculosis.
3. People with spinal problems should consult a medical expert before commencing Surya Namaskaram.
4. Most women can benefit by practising Surya Namaskaram even during menstruation. However, those with heavy or painful periods may feel, as a precaution not to practise at that time.
1. Shavasana, the yogic pose of relaxation, should be practised with breath awareness after completing Surya Namaskaram.
2. The relaxation period following Surya Namaskaram is an important part of the practise as it allows the body time for readjustment and removal of any toxins which have been released into the bloodstream during the practise.
3. The period of relaxation should last at least until the practitioner can feel that his heartbeat and breath have returned to normal and all tension has been released from the muscles.
Lord Sun is also Hanuman's Guru
Hanuman sought to educate himself and for this purpose he chose Surya the sun god as his guru saying: "You see everything there is to see in the universe and you know everything there is to know. Please accept me as your pupil." Surya hesitated. "I don't have the time," he said. "During the day I ride across the sky, and at night I am too tired to do anything."
"Then teach me as you ride across the sky during the day. I will fly in front of your chariot, facing you from dawn to dusk." Impressed by Hanuman's zeal and determination, Surya accepted him as his pupil. Thus Hanuman flew before the chariot of the sun god, withstanding the awesome glare, until he became well versed in the four books of knowledge (the Vedas), the six systems of philosophies (darshanas), the sixty-four arts or kalas and the one hundred and eight occult mysteries of the Tantras.
Dont try to learn by yourself. There are other mystical techniques and sciences are hidden with in Surya Namaskaram. A lesson without a teacher is merely rubbish. Learn Surya Namaskaram from a competent Yoga teacher and it will only take 2 - 3 months to learn. May Lord Sun bless you with health, wealth, prosperity and enlightenment to the extreme. "Hmmm Suryaye Namaha".
~ Vijayakumar Alagappan