Is part of Patanjali’s 8 Limbs of Yoga, which describes step by step how to practice yoga and reach awakening.
Brahmacharya is often translated as ‘celibacy’ or ‘chastity’, which traditionally, was to encourage those involved in the practice of yoga to conserve their sexual energy, in favour of using that energy to further progress along the Yogic path.
The word Brahmacharya actually translates as ‘behaviour which leads to Brahman’.
Brahman is thought of as ‘the creator’ in Yogic terms. In the Yogi path would mean reflecting if our behaviours are the ones that can lead us to the higher wisdom, higher self and finally enlightenment.
For most of us, including myself that are in the very beginning of our Yogi path, we use Brahmacharya as a way of accessing ‘right use of energy’, look into how I actually use and direct my energy.
I often have to check in with myself, sometimes ask Ian to help me seeing it clearly, if my energy is being directed to external desires – you know, those pleasures which seem great at the time but are ultimately fleeting – or to external approval, which in a very disguised way is my ego searching for love in others.
Sometimes my energy is being directed towards worrying – I can feel it straight away – m sleep becomes very restless, my shoulders and neck become very tense and I feel so much more tired and short tempered.
Maybe for you is the same or maybe a lot of your energy may also be spent on trying to present yourself as someone you are not in order to please or impress others, or maybe you direct your physical energy towards pushing yourself to be fitter, stronger or skinnier….
When directing our energy to things, feeling, actions that don’t serve us we are depleting our mind and body to direct energy to creating the life, the feelings and the actions that will makes us feel happier, healthier and more in peace with ourselves and the world around us.
When we are unhappy or fearful, our bodies respond by switching on our stress-responses (that infamous ‘fight or flight’ system that I mention so often in class and in programme), which heightens our blood pressure, lowers our energy levels and weakens our immune system.
When we’re happy and relaxed however, our nervous system switches on our healing mechanisms, which helps to keep our bodies in a vibrant and powerful state.
Sometimes we are so entangled up in the rut of directing our energy to what or who is not serving us that we can’t see it. Here’s some signals:
- you wake up feeling tired, even if you think your sleep enough
- you spend many hours in your day upset, disappointed or frustrated
- you are feeling overwhelmed with so much to do and so many people wanting your attention
- you are too self conscious or too worried about what other people think of you
- you feel bored and keep wishing something else or to be somewhere else
- you feel that you have to do it even though you don’t want to do it
- you tend to speak a lot about other people, more than you speak about yourself
Don’t worry, we have all been there and the best way to start is to shine light at where our energy is going.
From here we can start working on shifting where we direct our energy, that’s when the practice of Brahmacharya come’s in.
Want some help to learn and practice Brahmacharya, on my programme, Awaken Your Inner Warrior, a 90 day programme to transform your life, we work on your body, mind, what you eat, drink and how to direct your energy towards what and who can make you life healthier, happier, peaceful and powerful.
Helping men and women to be in the DRIVER seat of their life and to awaken their inner POWER.