Yin Sleep Sequence

 

Yoga is the art of balance and harmony. Balance in how we interact with ourselves and others, balance in what we eat, think and do and ultimately balance in how much we sleep as opposed to how much we wake. The Bhagavad Gita offers, Yoga is harmony. Not for him who eats too much or for him who eats too little; not for him who sleeps too little or for him who sleeps too much.

The ancient yogi seers classified sleep as one of the four fountains for survival (sleep, sex, food and self preservation) and if sleep is out of balance we tend to over compensate with one of the other fountains E.G. we may overeat. Interestingly it was found that if you got less than 5 hours sleep a night on a regular basis you were more likely to be heavier than those who ate more and slept more. Read more

12 Surrender to Insomnia

surrender to sleepOur modern world has turned our culture into one of sleep and one of wakefulness. We feel that to be a successful sleeper we must be alert all day and out to it at night.So when this doesn’t happen as with the case of insomnia or restless sleeping we feel we have somehow failed and the most natural thought is to fight our failure.

What usually keeps us up or wakes us up is undigested emotional issues. If we are busy all day we may not have spent time to work through any psychological knots that have been mounting so we take them to the bedroom. As we attempt sleep our unconscious mind will finally begin to deal with it and send a message to the ┬áconscious mind to wake you and let you know what is going on. When we wake or can’t sleep we might turn to a little self harming, chastising ourselves for our failure while the mind takes you on a joy ride. This something that keeps us awake is the ego. The ego is the one who notices, the judge, the drama queen of proceedings.

So how do we surrender when all this clamoring of the mind is going on?

1) Remember that sleep and wakefulness are not polar opposites. There is a little of each in both.

2) Try to practice kindness to yourself when you wake up or you can’t sleep. Don’t judge what is happening as good or bad but step into acceptance. When we are in this mode we can access the part of us that is the calm witness to our emotional maelstroms rather than identify with the bossy ego as to what should be happening.

3) When you become more of a witness rather than a judge to what is happening you have a choice. The choice is to continue to engage with old stories in your mind or to let them pass.This in turn says ‘I surrender to what is’ and the fighting will subside.

Practice for today: There are so many things we hold on to or refuse to give up or surrender to because we believe they are serving a purpose. Today if you have an issue that you have been grappling with say ‘I surrender to you’. This in turn will make your wakeful state more restful and your resting state more peaceful.