The Causal Body in Yoga Practice

What is Causal Body?

We have all experienced moments where the mind is so quite that we are actually observing our experience as if we were someone else.  This is a glimpse into the causal body.  These moments can be of many forms and are not necessarily blissful moments.  They can be of profound happiness and also can be of excruciating pain.  In my research and through my human experience, I found that presence is not always about being peaceful.  It is sometimes the moments that pull you out of linear time, either by shock or through extreme peace.

The causal body is the cause of your physical body. Your physical body would not exist without the causal.  It is your essence.  Other words that can be used to describe the causal body are: being, silence, infinite, eternal, and peaceful. It is the Self with a capital S. The seer in you that sees your body and actions at all times.

Quote in image by Frederick Lenz

It is really difficult not to judge, compare, and criticize oneself and others while practicing yoga and all these things go against what yoga is.  Yoga is to still the mind – and just become present in every sensation, movement, emotion that wants to arise, not pushing it away, not making stories about it and most importantly not shaming oneself for the way we are feeling.

 

 

As we practice asanas

I have found that focusing on the breath, and the muscle I am stretching during any asana is a useful step to witnessing myself.  When the mind has a focus it is easier for it not to go into judgments, memories, and day dreams. Furthermore, when I focus on the muscle or area I am stretching, I am giving it my full attention, care and tenderness, it has no option other than release the junk it is storing.  This may not be so easy for a beginner, yet it is fruitful as over time the mind learns to stay with the bodily sensations.  When we practice yoga, what we are really doing is learning about our body and self. We are attempting to release the tension everywhere so as to prepare this temple for what is to follow.  Usually this would be Savasana or relaxation pose also known as corpse pose.

Savasana

Being in tune with one’s causal body, that is the true Self is not as difficult as one would think, nor is it something extra ordinary reserved for the sages and saints of our times. It is accessible to all of humanity, when we have the ability to look inside rather than outside. By silencing the mind if only for a few seconds, we are in tune with the Self.   This tuning in will mostly take place, or is mostly intensified and accessible during savasana or relaxation pose, which is a place to surrender the body and still the mind and let the practice nourish and integrate within the body.

The body has been prepared and now is as still as possible.  We keep the mind free of thoughts as much as possible. If thoughts arise, it is not the end of the world. In every moment we can begin again.

The Somatic aspect

The primary reason somatic approaches are such a success in yoga is that somatic modalities bring each person back into themselves where all the answers are, rather than trying to outsource the answers. When we study our actions, thoughts, feelings and emotions we are able to understand what is causing our pain. Once we know the source of our pain, it is easier to release the pain and replace it with something pain free.  As we move into pain free moment to moment living we are then able to be more in touch with our Self.

Surely there will be days and moments where we are thrown off, and pulled out from our core, the important thing is to notice and find ways to bring ourselves back into our essence, whether by movement, stillness, creative outlets or through the use of breathwork.