May 1, 2017 | 69 minutes, 49 seconds
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About Rod Stryker
Yogarupa Rod Stryker is the founder of ParaYoga® and the author of The Four Desires: Creating a Life of Purpose, Happiness, Prosperity, and Freedom. He has taught for more than 35 years, dedicating his life to improving lives through his lectures, writing, creativity, leadership, service and family life.
After decades of study, intensive practice and apprenticeship with internationally-renowned Yoga masters, Rod founded ParaYoga® to create a resource for the time-tested wisdom of the yoga tradition. As part of ParaYoga’s Master Training program, he recently launched one of the most comprehensive online yoga teacher training in the world.
Renowned for his depth of knowledge, practical wisdom, and unique ability to transmit the deepest teachings to modern audiences, Rod is a leading spokesperson for living a life of purpose, fulfillment and freedom on two fronts. One, he offers accessible wisdom and practices to wide audiences, those who simply want to live more joyfully and effectively; he is also a leading authoritative source for experienced students and teachers of yoga and meditation. Rod is mentor to hundreds of teachers and thousands of students worldwide.
According to Ayurveda, there are subtle pathways that carry spiritual energy in the body called nadis. These pathways are so subtle that they are invisible until they are activated or in use. The best analogy for the elusive nature of the nadis is to think of them as similar to the pathways that electricity takes during a lightning strike, creating visible bolts of lightning.
When there is no electricity or lightning, then the nadi pathway or the lightning bolt is invisible, only becoming apparent when it is activated by lightning.
From the Ayurvedic and yoga perspective, the “electricity” that activates the nadi pathways is the body’s life force, or prana. If there is no life force or not enough prana (electricity), then the nadi (lightning bolt) never activates. It is only when the nadis are activated that the awareness is heightened enough to elicit the transformational opportunity that yoga and Ayurveda set out to achieve.
Yoga: The Lightning Maker
Yoga postures, particularly when held for at least 2 minutes in a relaxed and restorative manner, slowly begin to move the prana and ultimately activate the nadis. The prana is an extremely subtle energy, but much more dense than the nadis. For the prana to move, the density of the body and the tightness of the muscles must relax. When muscles are put into a stretch, as in a yoga asana, the belly of the muscle takes up to 2 minutes to relax. Since the belly of the muscle is where most of the muscle’s blood is, it is from here that the entire length of the muscle can relax.
Once the muscles begin to relax and lengthen as a result of a long restorative yoga hold, the prana can begin to move. Most people who practice yoga can feel the body vibrating after a yoga practice when they are laying in shavasana, the corpse pose that marks the relaxation period after a sequence of yoga poses. This vibrating feeling is actually the prana banging away at the density of the body.
After a good yoga class, the prana begins to surge in an attempt to activate the nadi pathways. It is the electricity trying to find the right lightning bolt pathways to follow. Once the nadis are activated, a heightened level of spiritual or subtle awareness is established.
Love, Sex and Yoga
So, how does all this relate to love and sex? Well, there is a nadi called Vajra Nadi that carries the sexual energy, and it is easily activated with promiscuity and casual sex. Unfortunately, if this nadi is repeatedly activated as a result of excess sex without love, then Vajra Nadi will be the road you drive on spiritually for years to come. In other words, you’ve glued the energy of love and sex together, making it difficult to experience true love because the mind has convinced you that the best way to experience love is through the physical sensation of sex.
While this might be fulfilling for a spell, it is poison for a lasting relationship and a recipe for a life of looking for true love in all the wrong places. To remedy this, prana must be re-directed to activate new nadis.
A few ways to lay down new pavement and to activate the nadis of true love are with the practices of slow, restorative, long hold yoga, prana-moving breathing exercises, and meditation.