“Satya Pratisthayam kriya phalasraylvam”
When one is firmly established in Satya, everything you say will come true
Satya (truthfulness) is the second of the five Yama’s following Ahimsa and by practicing Satya we are reaffirming and supporting Ahimsa (non-violence). Satya encourages us to speak and act from a place of truth, not our own truth but from a place of correct perception; seeing things as they actually are, not how our personal belief system perceives them to be.
You may have said or heard someone say, “I believe I’m right because……” but the other person may have another reason for why they believe they are right, therefore it can be meaningful to look at things from all angles and all perspectives. Its important to note that we all experience the exact same event differently. For example:
“In the October 24, 2008 issue of the journal Science, Yale University psychologists show that people judged others to be more generous and caring if they had just held a warm cup of coffee and less so if they had held an iced coffee. In a second study, they showed people are more likely to give something to others if they had just held something warm and more likely take something for themselves if they held something cold.” Yale News
Satya therefore challenges us to step out of the situation that we are in and look at the present moment as it reveals itself, to let go of what just happened and not to worry about whats coming ahead but to honestly see and experience the moment without being influenced by past experiences. In my teacher training this was described as looking out a dirty windscreen, you can kind of see whats in front of you but its murky and unclear, when you clean the window everything becomes so much clearer you can see exactly whats in front of you.
“As we remove the layers of our cultural conditioning, we expand our beliefs to allow new perspectives, and as we clear inner spaces, we catch more and more glimpses of our true self”
Like Ahimsa, Satya is simple and easy to understand but not always easy to practice so we do the best that we can as often as we can. Ahimsa is the most valued Yama, so if speaking the truth causes unnecessary harm it is best to say nothing at all, therefore it’s essential for us to be mindful that what we say is beneficial and to say it in a kind and compassionate way. Before we blurt out our opinion or criticism without thinking, the ancients advise us to pause and consider: Is it true? Is it necessary? Is it useful? Is it kind?
“Satya Pratisthayam kriya phalasraylvam”
When one is firmly established in Satya, everything you say will come true.
This sutra gives us the freedom to live from our heart, to follow our true calling without hiding behind a veil – trying to be someone that we are not because we believe that other people expect us to live and act a certain way. By not following our true calling you’re denying yourself and the world from your unique gift.
“Being aligned with the truth gives you power to manifest”
This month in your yoga practice perhaps ask yourself am I practicing honestly or is it just a performance because I believe my body should be in a specific shape and that’s what the teacher and everyone expects of me. Ask yourself how does this shape feel in my body? Is there anything that I can do to make this feel better? Would a block, a belt or a blanket allow me to open up more? If none of these tools are available, would bending one or both knees allow me to free up the spine or the lungs so I can breathe with greater ease?
As you can see Ahimsa and Satya work very close together when you practice honestly and by letting go of preconceived ideas you will be doing the least amount of harm to your physical body and opening up space in the mind to allow room for you explore the truth in each moment as they arrive.
Satya in Asana
Ardha Chandra Chapasana – AKA Sugarcane Pose
Ardha – Half
Chandra – Moon
Chap – Bow
Asana – Pose
Level – Intermediate
Ardha Chandra Chapasana is a challenging balance pose that when done with precision has the potential to truly open up the body to create a sense of freedom. Ardha Chandra Chapasana activates the solar plexus (manipura chakra) which is responsible for self esteem, self worth, identity and life purpose. When we are feel worthy and follow our life’s purpose we are living Satya.
MENTAL AND EMOTIONAL BENEFITS
Improves focus and concentration
Increases self esteem
Improves core strength and Balance
Strengthens ankles, calves, and thighs
Stretches the hip flexors, groin, quads and hamstrings
Opens chest and shoulders
Helps regulate metabolism
CAUTIONS AND CONTRAINDICATIONS
Low back injury
Low blood pressure
HINTS AND TIPS
If your hamstrings are tight, bring the floor to you by using a block
If your standing leg buttock cramps draw the sitting bone under and rotate leg outward.