Yoga Nidra has grown wildly popular over the past 20 years. It is often thought to be a form of relaxation. If you asked 90% of the people who practice yoga nidra what it is, they might say, “guided meditation” or “guided relaxation”. It is, but it is so much more.
Yoga Nidra has its origins thousands of years ago. It was originally intended to be a methodology for mastering the world we live in. By, “mastering the world” I mean creating the experience you want to have. It means to take control over the process of manifestation. If you want to manifest a new job, new relationship, financial security, or improved health, Yoga Nidra is the tool to use.
Yoga Nidra utilizes a process called “sankalpa” to create the world. Sankalpa is the process through which the Yogi creates through a strong, focused, and clear intention. Most people are “unconscious creators”. This means they find themselves in the circumstances they’re in and wonder how they got there. Poverty, ill health, divorce, addiction, etc. are all self-created. This can be difficult to realize. However, when we accept this, it empowers us to know that we can create something different, something new and more desirable. Classical Yoga Nidra is the process of “conscious creation”. This practice is remarkable for its ability to transform every aspect of our lives.
Yoga Nidra is a state of consciousness or awareness. It is not a specific practice. This is why there are many different approaches to the practice. However, almost all modern practices utilize some form of progressive relaxation to open the doorway to this higher state of consciousness. Some call it body scanning, some call it progressive relaxation, and others call it conscious deep relaxation. Regardless of what it is called, this is only the first step to creating reality.
Reality is our experience. Happiness and contentment, wealth and material comfort, health, and vigor are all experiences that can be created. The first step is achieved by entering the state of consciousness known as “Yoga Nidra”. Yoga Nidra literally means “yogic sleep” but this is not ordinary sleep. The body appears so relaxed, it is as if it is asleep. However, the yogi’s awareness is fully present. The second step is to focus this newfound awareness on whatever the yogi wants to create. This act of focusing awareness on a single experience is called “sankalpa”.
Once deeply relaxed and aware, the yogi visualizes the reality they want to experience. This visualization is far more powerful than a simple visualization. Simple visualization is more like an idea. This visualization moves the forces of the universe to manifest the vision!
It appears like a type of magic. However, this magic is a science, and it is exact. If you do the practice, you will obtain that which you desire. The ancient yogis explained the science in detail, but this requires more space than a simple blog to go into. During our Yoga Nidra Teacher Training Course, I go into the complete science, using both ancient and modern language. Students enter this state and have a direct experience of it. Then they are trained to guide others into this state.
Whether you want to create greater health, or something more material, explore the practice of Yoga Nidra and learn to master magic!
Dr. Marc Halpern is the Founder of the California College of Ayurveda, author of five textbooks, and the #1 Yoga Nidra recording: Yoga Nidra and Self-Healing. He and his wife, Dr. Deerheart Halpern teach Yoga Nidra Teacher Training Intensive and workshops around the world.
Want to become a Yoga Nidra Teacher? Check out our CCA Yoga Nidra Teacher Training.