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Yoga to Balance the Head and Heart

By Shakta Khalsa

Our heads are logical and want "proof" about everything, which means they cannot understand anything that is outside of the limits of the mind. Our hearts can understand and intuit what the head does not know, yet our emotional heart can create a ball of confusion that clouds our judgement.

With head and heart able to go haywire at at moment, it can seem that we don't know anything clearly. But what if they can work together? What if there is a lovely line to walk where the head and heart complement and balance each other? That is the fun place, and this is where I love to be.

So how can we get there? One way is to practice Kundalini Yoga, which works with the meridians and pressure points of the body to affect positive change in the higher glands of the brain, the nervous system, the chakras, and ultimately your outlook on life, all for the better.

Toward that end, I've created a Kundalini Yoga video of the set to Balance the Head and Heart that you can use for real-time practice. This video was inspired by an online class I did at Yoga U called Happily Ever Now. You can download the archived 2 hour class and you'll find your head and heart beginning to collaborate. This yoga set will get you started on the path of balancing the head and heart.

This yoga set brings a balance between logic and feeling, between ideas and the "fire" to put them into action, between an overly intellectual mind and overly sensitive emotions. It aligns the head and heart so you can be great and graceful, aware and loving.

May the union of head and heart, soul and body, joy and action be alive and well in you this day and every day.

Kriya to Balance the Head and the Heart

This set helps to bring a balance between logic and feeling, between ideas and the “fire” to put them into action, between an overly intellectual mind and overly sensitive emotions. It aligns the head and heart so you can be great and graceful, aware and loving.

  1. Arm Twists

Sit in Easy Pose or in a chair with your spine straight, feet flat on the floor. Arms straight out to the sides from the shoulders with the wrists bent perpendicular to the arms, as though you were pressing the palms flat against two walls. There will be pressure on the wrists as you keep them pulled back in this position throughout the exercise.

The beginning position is with the fingers straight up. This is the inhale position. Now exhale and rotate the entire arm until the fingers face forward. Inhale and return to the beginning position. Then exhale again and twist the arms until the fingers point backward. Then inhale in the beginning position.

Continue, keeping all four movements distinct and separate. The elbows rotate. Move in a rhythm of 1 full cycle per 4 seconds.

Continue for 3 - 7 minutes, then inhale, exhale and relax. Massage the arms and shoulders for a few seconds.

This exercise changes the chemistry of the brain fluid.

  1. Arm Arcs

Still in Easy Pose, extend the arms straight out to the sides, palms facing out, as in the previous exercise. Inhale and raise the arms overhead to form an arc, with the palms crossing each other and held slightly in front of the crown of the head. Exhale and lower the arms straight out to the sides once more.

Then inhale again and raise the arms, crossing the palms as before, but this time slightly in back of the crown center.

Continue the four-part motion powerfully, keeping the wrists pulled back the entire time.

Continue for 1 - 2 minutes.

  1. Crow Squats

Stand with the feet shoulder-width apart. Add Crow Squats to the previous arm movements. As you exhale, squat down so the buttocks are close to the floor. The arms will be straight out to the sides. On the inhalation, stand up and bring the arms overhead in an arc, in front of the crown. Then exhale and squat with the arms out. On the next inhale, stand up and arch the arms in back of the crown.

Continue with a strong breath for 2 - 4 minutes, moving as quickly as possible.

(Beginners might need to experiment with placement of the feet, i.e., you may need a wide placement to keep the feet flat on the ground. Also, to keep your balance, try supporting your back against a wall so that you can get the feel of the posture. Then move away from the wall so you can squat as in the exercise.)

This exercise opens the lower back and hips. It is also good for elimination.

© The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan

Source: Kundalini Yoga by Shakta Kaur Khalsa

 

Shakta Khalsa is one of the world’s leading experts on children and yoga, having worked with both since the mid-1970s. She is a trained yoga professional at the highest level (ERYT-500), and was named one of the top five Kundalini Yoga teachers in the world by Yoga Journal. She studied under the direct guidance of Yogi Bhajan, Master of Kundalini Yoga.

© The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan