The Hidden Language of Hatha Yoga: Symbols, Secrets and Metaphor
“Hidden Language Hatha Yoga is both deeply personal and brilliantly universal. Through attention to the symbolism of the asanas, (postures), we can discover layers of meaning and make connections that change our lives. Because we are listening to the body, our reflections take on an honesty and reality that the mind can’t deny. As we move into the asana, it becomes clear where we are holding tension, where we are protecting ourselves, where we open. Starting from an attitude of acceptance, we can encourage movement and bring in curiosity. What is holding? How does it relate the symbolism of the position?
Symbols resonate with meaning and allude to a richness that continues to be revealed as they are explored. They always hold further mystery. When we realize that the names of the asanas and the physical positions themselves are symbolic, we are standing at a doorway. Through the Hidden Language process, Swami Radha offers us a key.
Bringing reflection into our Hatha Yoga practice, we learn to listen- not just to the body, but also to our thoughts, intuition and memories. We observe and acknowledge images that may arise in our minds, connected with the symbol. By being aware of the interactions between our body, our mind and the symbol, the pose deepens. Yoga is suddenly more than a workout at a certain time of day. It becomes relevant off the mat. The insights gathered in practice can be carried into action. Life starts to change. Yoga comes alive.”
By Swami Lalitananda, from the forward to Hatha Yoga The Hidden Language by Swami Sivananda Radha.
“In the Hidden Language approach to Hatha Yoga, founded by Swami Sivananda Radha, the asanas can be realised as mudras, sacred seals or gestures. If we want to understand what secrets they hold, we can inquire and reflect and begin to loosen up what has been sealed away- in our bodies, in our minds, in the potency of the poses themselves”.
Swami Lalitananda, The Hidden Life of Asanas.
The Hidden Language approach is a reflective one. Bring a mat, blanket, journal and pen.