This colourful tour of Rajasthan with the cultural capital of India – Varanasi, unfolds the extent and diversity of the Indian subcontinent as well as the capital of the Himalayan Kingdom of…
Yoga & Meditation
Originating in India almost 5000 years ago, Ayurveda literally means “the knowledge of life” and involves natural herbal treatments, traditional medicines, massage and yoga to achieve harmony between mind, body and spirit. The beautiful State of Kerala in South India is the home of Ayurveda and it is practiced here in its purest form. Further north, the Himalayan foothills and the upper banks of the holy Ganges provide the perfect setting to practice the ancient art of Yogic Meditation. The town of Rishikesh, with its ashrams and saffron-clad Sadhus, is the spiritual centre for Yogic Meditation.
There is a spiritual source in India which is at this time exerting a powerful influence on the western World. Constraints of modern medicine have led to a growing interest in ancient proven healing methods. Thus, conventional treatments are treatments of diseases, not of people.
More and more people are moving away from modern medicines and turning towards traditional, also referred to as ‘alternative’ systems of medicine, for enhancing health and treating illness. Modern medicine are fail to provide a satisfactory solution to people suffering from ailments like arthritis, back pain, allergies, harmful effects of stress and other chronic diseases.
India has a rich heritage in the areas of traditional or natural medicine. The earliest mention of Indian medical practices can be found in the Vedas, around the second millennium B.C. A systematic and scientific approach was adopted by the sages of the times, leading to the development of a system that is relevant even today.
Natural system of medicines which focused on holistic healing developed in other ancient cultures as well. Today one can choose from various systems of alternative medicine be it acupuncture, aromatherapy, meditation, Ayurveda, Yunani medicine, mud therapy, Pranic healing, Reiki, Tibetan medicine and many more.
“Yoga is a system of exercise for physical and mental well being. It combines stylized poses with deep breathing and meditation. The term Yoga is itself derived from a Sanskrit word meaning to join together. The ultimate aim in yoga is to unite the human soul with the universal spirit.”
Yoga was developed about 5000 yrs ago. The first written description was found in “Yoga Sutra’s”, attributed to Patanjali. According to Patanjali, within the human body there are channels called Nadi and centres called Chakra. If these channels and centres are trapped, energy hidden in the body can be released. This energy is called Kundalini.
Patanjali stated eight stages of Yoga:
1.The Yama (universal moral commandments)
2.Niyama (self-purification through discipline)
5.Pratyahara (withdrawal of mind from external objects)
8.Samadhi (state of super consciousness)
Besides the different stages present in Yoga, there are various forms of discipline touching different aspects of human life. These disciplines include Hath-Yoga (Physical exercise), Gyan-Yoga or Dhyan-Yoga (exercise for the mind and intellect) and Karma-Yoga (discipline actions in daily life).
Benefits of Yoga
This health and fitness practice provides both physical and mental therapy. It considers ageing as largely an artificial condition, caused mainly by autointoxication or self-poisoning. By keeping the body parts clean and well- lubricated, cell deterioration can be greatly reduced. To get the maximum benefits of Yoga one has to follow three main guidelines i.e.
Practice of Asana
With the regular practice of Asanas, we can control our cholesterol level, reduce weight, normalize blood pressure and improve cardiac performance. Asanas harmonize our mental energy flow by clearing any blockages in the subtle body, leading to mental equilibrium and calmness.
The practice of Pranayama, the correct breathing technique, helps to manipulate our energies. Most of us breath incorrectly (only thoracically not using our abdomen, thereby utilizing only half of our lung capacity). Pranayama is a technique wherein it re-educates our breathing process, helps to release tension and develop a relaxed state of mind. It balances our nervous system, reduces the need for sleep and encourages creative thinking. Increasing oxygen to our brain, improves mental clarity, alertness and physical well being.
Yoga Nidra is a form of meditation. Performed while lying on the back in the Shavasana pose. It relaxes the physiological and psychological systems. This technique completely rejuvenates the body and mind, giving a sense of well being.
More and more doctors are prescribing meditation as a way to lower blood pressure, improve exercise performance in people with angina, help asthmatics breathe easier, relieve insomnia and generally ease the everyday stresses of life. Meditation is a safe and simple way to balance a person’s physical, emotional and mental states. The concept of meditation works on the principle that when the mind is calm and focused on the present, it is neither reacting to memories from the past nor being preoccupied with plans for the future, two major sources of chronic stress known to impact health.
“There are several techniques of meditation but they all have one thing in common – focus on questioning the busy mind.”
All forms of meditation can be broadly classified into concentrative meditation focuses attention on a breath, an image, or a sound (mantra), in order to still the mind and allow greater awareness and clarity to emerge.
The simplest form of concentrative meditation is to sit quietly and focus attention on the breath.
Yoga and meditation practitioners believe that there is a direct correlation between one’s breath and one’s state of the mind. As one focuses one’s awareness on the breath, the mind becomes absorbed in the rhythm of inhalation and exhalation. As a result, breathing will become slower and deeper, and the mind will become more tranquil and aware.
The persons sits quietly and simply witnesses whatever goes through the mind, not reacting or becoming involved with thoughts, memories, worries, or images. This helps to gain a more calm, clear and non-reactive state of mind.
Studies show that after meditation, reactions are faster, creativity greater and comprehension broader. In addition, by silencing the mind, meditation can also put one in touch with the self, allowing the body’s own inner wisdom to be heard.
People from all over the world , now come to India , to experience healing and Wellness programmes. At Incredible Heritage India Tours, after careful scrutiny and in-depth research, we have put together a few Yoga & Meditation Packages, for Ayurveda Resorts in Kerala, as well as elsewhere in India.
These are Ayurveda and Wellness Resorts, that we whole heartedly recommend, for travellers from overseas, seeking Ayurvedic, Wellness and Yoga holidays in India. Each of these Resorts, has a fully equipped Ayurvedic Spa, offering treatments under the supervision of qualified and well-known doctors.
In addition to the Ayurveda Resorts showcased here, we also offer Wellness Packages, at several other Resorts in India.
- Ananda in the Himalayas, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand
- Somatheeram Ayurveda Resort, near Kovalam. Kerala
- Oberoi Udaivilas, Udaipur
- Wildflower Hall, Mashobra
- Angsana – Bangalore
- Spice Village Resort , Thekkady, Kerala
- Kalari Kovilakom, Pallakad ,Kerala SwaSwara, Gokarna (near Goa)
- Kairali Ayurvedic Health Resort, Pallakad, Kerala
- Coconut Lagoon, Kumarakom, Kerala