EAP Corner, Wholeness Healing Today

Nidra Yoga is Now being offered at Wholeness Healing Center

In an often stress-filled world, many are seeking peace, healing, and strength not only to cope but also to thrive. Yoga and meditation are often remedies sought for finding and enhancing inner resources and well-being.

What if you knew that yoga can be practiced with minimal or no movement and that meditation can be as simple as lying down and being guided through a deeply relaxing, stress-relieving practice? Yoga Nidra extends such an invitation! Yoga Nidra is an ancient yogic practice, its history extending back 1,500 years (Desai, 2017). It is growing in popularity as its ability to provide an antidote to the pace and stress of modern life has become better recognized.

The practice of Yoga Nidra invites both a deep, holistic relaxation and an expansive meditative state of awareness. Yoga Nidra means “yogic sleep”. However, this isn’t sleep as we generally think of or experience it, unconscious and unaware. Rather, nidra is like a conscious, intentional sleep (Desai, 2017), mindfully resting deeply in awareness, cultivating the ability to bring that deeper state of awareness and its healing benefits back into everyday living.

To practice, all that is needed is to find the most comfortable position in which to rest, listen to the guiding instructions, and allow the experience to unfold. Typically, the practice begins with physical relaxation through one of various methods of body awareness or tension-release techniques. Then, mental and emotional relaxation is invited using various methods of imagery or visualizations and breathwork.

Before beginning nidra, you have the opportunity to tune into and set a positive intention, desire, or goal to carry through the practice. As you deeply relax, your mind becomes more receptive, and your intention is like a seed that can become more deeply rooted in your heart and mind. This deepens the potential for positive change.

In its simplicity and ease of practice, yoga nidra is a form of yoga and meditation accessible to anyone and offers holistic healing benefits, from physical to psychological, emotional to spiritual. As well, nidra as a practical, therapeutic healing tool progressively which has evidence-based support, as research discovers more about the deeper brainwave states of sleep and the healing and restoration the brain and body experiences during that time. Yoga Nidra  provides a gateway to consciously access and experience the whole-self healing, restoration, and insight inherent in those brainwave states.

For instance, one hour of effective nidra practice can be worth 3-4 hours of deep REM sleep (Lusk, 2017). In this sleep state, the body and brain engages in the act of repairing and renewing itself. Nidra evokes a similar brainwave state that invites this deep healing for body and mind.

Yoga Nidra has significant stress relief and healing potential for body, mind, and spirit. Physical benefits of nidra as supported by research include improved immunity, increased energy, reduced pain, and stress relief (Lusk, 2015). Regular nidra practice helps increase the nervous system’s relaxation response and inhibit the stress response and has been noted to help lower blood pressure and cortisol (stress hormone) levels (Lusk, 2015).

Nidra has not only a physical but also a psychological therapeutic value. The practice encourages development of emotional awareness and control, creating access to your inner peace and calm. In the deep space of relaxed awareness arises the capacity to reframe perspectives, let go of self-limiting beliefs, and experience deeper connection to yourself and others. Mentally, nidra promotes increased clarity of thought, focus, and enhances creativity (Lusk, 2017). Nidra also helps teach and support mindfulness.

As a spiritual practice, Yoga Nidra carries the potential of enriching spiritual awakening and formation.

Overall, Yoga Nidra offers a powerful resource and transformative tool on your journey into wholeness and healing!  Nidra Yoga will be offered at Wholeness Healing Center on Mondays at 10:00 and Wednesdays at 2:00.  It will be a 45-minute session for $10/session.  Please call 308-382-5297 ext. 110 to reserve a spot for that day.

Works Cited:

Desai, K. (2017). Yoga nidra: The art of transformational sleep. Twin Lakes, WI: Lotus Press

Lusk, J. (2015). Yoga nidra for complete relaxation and stress relief. Oakland CA: New Harbinger Publications, Inc

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