Yoga of the Body

ntroduction :

“Yoga of the body” is a characteristic feature of Integral Yoga, which recognises the Divinity inherent in the physical matter. In its ultimate aim, Integral yoga attempts to transform the very  physical matter by the manifestation of Supramental  consciousness. 

For many of us, this remains a theoretical construct and a distant dream from our present state of reality.  We have made a humble attempt to build the bridge from our present state to the higher states of consciousness and created a pathway for the modern man to explore and manifest the hidden divinity of the body. 

“Consciousness as Medicine” (CASM), is a practical approach to Yoga of the Body. It is a work in process, and the various insights and practices are based on the experiences of the author. It is important to appreciate that there are many approaches to the Truth, and what we share is just one of the them.


The Supramental Yoga of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo have created the foundations for a new possibility – Transformation of the  Body. Their work have created the possibility of the transformation of the physical matter. I believe that it is perhaps the Supramental Descent, that has awakened the consciousness in the physical matter and made the body much more receptive to the Higher Consciousness.

Fundamental premise of “Yoga of the Body”

  1. The body has its own consciousness, body consciousness which is separate from the mental consciousness. 
  2. The body is a conscious being. Each cell, each organ is conscious in its own unique way. 
  3. There is Divinity inherent in each cell of the body. 

The purpose of “Yoga of the Body” is

  1. to manifest the Divinity inherent in the body,
  2. to transform the body in the Light of the Divine Truth. 

This happens in several stages, which involves a progressive infusion of consciousness in the body, awakening of the body consciousness, and opening the body to higher ranges of consciousness. 

Creation of the Body is a marvellous mystery, most of which we still don’t understand. It is important to realise and appreciate how our body is created and the immense intelligence and wisdom guiding the entire process to such a sublime perfection. The more we discover the minute genetic and molecular processes, the intricate mechanisms of differentiation of cells, the more we marvel at the mystery and the intelligence inherent in the cells. 

The origin of the body is from a fusion of two cells, ova and sperm. This single cell divides into two cells, these two cells become four, and the cell division continues in a remarkably controlled and intelligent manner to create who we are – a conscient being with trillions of cells, with a unique ability to think, dream and achieve. I have always marvelled at this supreme intelligence inherent in the cells; Who  is the one guiding and controlling each  step of the absolutely amazing and complex mechanism of Human body? All these cells are guided by some intelligence, which we cannot fathom that determines which cell will differentiate into what type of specialised cell with its unique function. The entire process of cell division, differentiation and how the various tissues and organs are formed is an absolute marvel of creation. 

What is important to appreciate is that each cell of the body has a single origin, and they must be connected to each other at some level, even though they become part of a different tissues and organ systems. 

Each cell, each tissue, each organ is conscious and intelligent 

All the cells are part of an integrated being, and work with that collective intelligence of the tissue. Each tissue, each organ has its own specific intelligence, a unique role to play in the body. Each organ and tissue also has a complex relation with many other organs of the body – some direct and many indirect linkages. All the cells, tissues, and organs of the body work with an inner intelligence, they don’t depend on our mind or mental intelligence to function. Rather, our rational or conscious mind is largely unaware of all the inner processes that happen in the cells or the organs. It is also important to note that in normal circumstances this natural intelligence inherent in the cells is quite accurate and performs the work of the body remarkably well. 

Approach to our Body

A True approach to our body can emerge only if we experience and deeply realise that 

  1. Our body is essentially Divine in essence.
  2. Our body is the temple of the Divine. 
  3. Our body is a conscious being, which can listen to and respond to all our thoughts and emotions. 
  4. Our body is vastly intelligent, and her wisdom surpasses all our second hand knowledge. (“apara vidya”)

However, most of us treat our body as if she is just an inconscient machine, and ruthlessly use and abuse her for our selfish needs. We don’t love her, we don’t take care of her, rather expect her to do all the work for us without ever bothering to ask how she is, and what she actually needs. And when the body becomes ill, we put her through all sorts of unconscious treatments and chemicals and force her to get well. 

In “yoga of the body”, we must transform our relation with our body. Treat her like a Divine body, and give her lots of love, respect, gratitude and care. We need to realise that our body is vastly intelligent being, and must learn to trust her intelligence and not confuse her with our second hand knowledge and ideas. 

Mental thoughts and vital emotions have a large influence on the body

Although the inner organs of the body work with their own intelligence, however they are largely influenced by our beliefs and emotions.  It is important to realise that each thought, each emotion is not just an idea in the mental space; but also manifests as a molecular change in the brain cells, which triggers a series of changes in almost every system of the body. Thoughts or emotions can alter the psycho-neuro-immunological system, the psycho-neuro-endocrine system and thus influence virtually any tissue in the body. 

A simple way to understand is to visualise our organs and tissues virtually living in a psychological environment created by our thoughts, beliefs and emotions. It implies that when we are happy, the organs too are happy, and if we are depressed, then each organ too is living in a depressed environment. The body is listening to us all the time, and responds accordingly. If we believe we are going to get well, the organs feel the trust and begin to heal. When we believe that there is no hope to get well, the body and her organs too find it difficult to heal. 

Role of physical exercises 

The human body was made for physical activity, and not for sitting for long durations. The medical science is slowly realising the importance of physical activity and declared that physical inactivity is in fact as harmful as smoking for the body. 

In yogic perspective, the role of physical exercise goes far beyond than physical health. Here, the chief purpose of physical exercise is to awaken the consciousness in each and every part of the body. We have evolved various kriyas (yogic processes)  in CASM, which awaken the consciousness in the various parts of the body, and make the body much more receptive to the subtle forces of Prana, Prithvi (earth), Surya (sun), and Higher Consciousness. 

Role of Food 

Food plays an important role. Food provides the energy and the basic material substance for the body. In the yogic process, food plays a much larger role than just material nourishment of the body. Each food carries with it a certain consciousness, along with the vibrations of the people who are involved in preparing the food. It is this vibration which becomes important as the body becomes evolves and becomes more sensitive. 

In ordinary life, our relation with food is quite unconscious. We eat out of habits, we eat to satisfy the palate, we eat to entertain ourselves. Beyond the palate, we have absolutely no idea, what happens to the food we ingest, and how our body reacts to the food we give her. 

In our yoga, we need to transform our relation with food. We need to learn to listen to the needs of our body, and give our body only that food which she needs and is happy to receive. Rather than following external nutrition theories and fancy diets, we need to learn to listen to the wisdom of our body, which is far superior than the second hand knowledge of other minds. 

We need to overcome the old food habits, overcome the slavery to the palate, and learn to eat in a conscious way. In fact, as we progress in the yoga of the body, and learn to access energy from other sources (Prana, Earth, Sun, Higher consciousness), we will realise that our actual requirement of food is a small fraction of our present consumption. We learn to regard food as a “prasadam” from the Divine, and learn to eat “prasadam” in a deeply meditative way with lots of gratitude. 

We can draw in Prana from any part of the body

Indian yogic literature speak about different layers of the being or different koshas. The concept of prana, chakras and nadis is deeply entrenched in the Yogic and Ayurveda traditions. The different layers of the being, the chakras and the prana Shakti are experiential realities at a subtler level of being. We have devised a series of simple CASM kriyas, to help people at the present level of consciousness to learn to experience prana in different parts of the being, and learn to draw in prana in the body from different chakras, joints and organs.  Even after a few minutes of the CASM kriya, any person can experience the change in their body. Once there is an inflow of prana in any part of the body, there is an experience of lightness, relief from pain, a sense of integration and joy in the body. Prana does the work of purifying and nourishing the body at a subtle level which translates into healing at a physical level.

Opening the body to the Sun rays 

Sun is essential for life on earth. Without Sun, there is no life possible. Our rishis realised the importance of Sun, and gave Sun immense importance in religious and cultural life. Sri Aurobindo mentioned that “Sun means Inner Truth”, “Sun is the symbol of Supermind”,  “Sun stands universally for the Supramental Light, the Divine Gnosis”.

We need to transform our relationship with Sun, regard Him as a symbol of God and learn to open our body to Him with love, trust and gratitude. The rays of the Sun are deeply therapeutic, and have the power to dispel ignorance, pain and darkness from the different layers of our being. 

Connecting the body to Mother Earth 

Ancient Indian Rishis understood the significance of the Nature, and organised all aspects of social life with due reverence to Nature and her powers. Rishis realised the Divinity inherent in Earth and worshipped Her as Divine Mother. However, in modern times man has only tried to exploit Nature for his greed. 

We need to reestablish our true connection with Mother Earth, realise her Divinity and treat Her with love and gratitude. Walking consciously with bare foot on Mother Earth, helps us to reconnect to Her in a deeper way, and opens our body to her healing and soothing vibrations. Earth has immense capacity to absorb all our pain and suffering and is always willing to accept us as we are. Touching Earth with love and reverence and offering our problems to Her can be a deeply therapeutic and beautiful inner experience. 

Peace, peace, peace 

Most of us live in a state of constant restlessness. The mind is forever busy with mindless chatter, and the vital mostly restless. Sadly, the body also gets affected by this constant mental stress and suffers. Wherever this is a disease in the body, one can feel this restlessness and anxiety at a subtle level. A practical way of dealing with any pain or inflammation in the body is to invoke the vibrations of Peace in the body. The body responds remarkably well to the vibrations of Peace.

Love – the supreme healer

The different parts of the body behave like small babies, who demand attention, love and care. If they don’t get attention, they can revolt and refuse to cooperate. And once the body parts get genuine love and care, they respond accordingly with openness and trust. Love is the most powerful healer, the magical vibration that can create miracles. No matter what condition the body may be, I have seen the body always respond favourably to pure love. It is important to realise that the body understands the motives behind your every action, you cannot fool the body. The body understands the true feelings behind  “ I love you”, is it merely done as a mechanical exercise, or does one genuinely feel love for her. 

Preparing the body for the yoga of transformation 

The first step is to purify the body from all mental, vital and subconscious influences. We need to free the body of her habitual patterns and all attachment to habitual reactions. The body needs to become free from the tamas, free from the vital restlessness and free from the mental beliefs. 

Exercising with love and deep body awareness infuses consciousness in the body and makes her supple. Giving body the right type of food in a conscious manner, helps in creating a deeper sense of well being in the body.  Connecting to Nature around us, opening our being to the vibrations of Sun (Surya dev), Earth ( Prithvi Ma), Prana expands the body consciousness and makes the body much more receptive. Once we start living in the inner being, we realise that all the problems and worries exist only in the surface consciousness. Living in the inner being, frees the body from the limiting influences of the surface ego consciousness. Connecting deeply with the body with love heals the body, opens her and prepares her to receive the Higher consciousness. 

At each step of the yoga, know and feel that the Divine is with you and around you, guiding you. A little opening, a little will, a little trust is needed to make the beginning. With the Grace of Divine Mother, all the inner doors will open, and the Divine will manifest in a divine body.

Our approach to “Yoga of the Body” integrates all the yogic approaches. 

Our approach to Yoga of the Body synthesises the essence of Hatha Yoga ( conscious body work, usage of prana Shakti),  Bhakti Yoga (love and surrender to the Divine), Raja Yoga (concentration and meditative practices to invoke higher consciousness), Karma Yoga (consciousness in all work and surrender to the Divine will) and  Kris Yoga (use of specific CASM kriyas).

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