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Dinacharya (Daily Behaviour)

For Radiance

 

Destiny

From the perspective of yoga and Ayurveda, we must take responsibility for our daily habits and routines as they represent the foundation of our lifestyle and therefore, of our destiny.  Acknowledging that our daily habits/routine either build and purify our radiance or reduce it, is the beginning of an inspiring journey. 

 

From Routines to Rituals

Eventually what was intimately a mundane daily routine or requirement such as taking a shower becomes a beautiful ritual of self-care and love. Aligning our habits with our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspirations brings lasting radiance. 

 

Respecting Nature

Having a mindful and heartfelt routine enhances our strengths, beauty, generosity and inspiration. We become attuned to our natural and empowered rhythms and feel synchronized with nature. 

 

How the day begins and how the day ends are vital for setting the tone for our day and night as a whole. 

 

Daily Choices: 

  • Awaken just before sunrise. We sleep better, and the early morning influences help begin our day with optimism and an awareness of real purpose;

  • Honour the bathroom routines and cleanse the nasal passage and tongue;

  • Pray and meditate daily;  

  • Practice asanas; 

  • Have a light breakfast — Kapha’s can wait until 10 a.m. or later to eat their first light meal;

  • Bathe mindfully and make use of water blessing;

  • Wear clean, comfortable clothing; 

  • See your work as service; 

  • Have your main meal between noon and 2 p.m; 

  • Choose natural foods that are agreeable with your constitution, season and time of day; 

  • Be aware of the six tastes (sweet, sour, salty, pungent, astringent, and bitter) choose more of the tastes that are helpful to maintaining your doshic balance and less of the others. 

  • Late afternoon or early evening, meditate and relax;

  • Spend time in/with nature; 

  • Have a light evening meal; and

  • Go to sleep by 10 pm. 

 

Prana ( Positive expression of Air and Space)

Responsible for life, prana keeps all cells alive. Prana governs respiration, oxygenation, and circulation. It sustains our life force and all sensory and motor functions and it governs the biological functions of ojas and tejas.

 

Healthy Prana manifests as: 

  • Mental clarity

  • Ability to take perspectives

  • Good communication

  • Lightness of being

  • Strong intuition

  • Lots of energy

  • Spiritual and feeling at one with the universe

 

Weak Prana manifests as:

  • Fatigue

  • Depressed

  • Gas and bloating

  • Over talking

  • Overthinking

  • Aggressive and/or harsh movements

  • Inability to sit still

How to keep Prana strong:

  • Pranāyama

  • Mantra

  • Nature

  • Speech control ( being aware of our words - not wasting energy talking about nothing - silence) 

  • Praying

  • Dancing

  • Appreciate the space between things on the do list and feeling it as something special i.e. nothing is something

  • Smiling

  • Listening

  • Giving 

  • Receiving

  • Feeling the breeze and wind 

  • Asanas- Especially movement of the arms, synchronizing the breath with the movement, inviting prana to flow and expanding the chest

Tejas ( Positive expression of Fire and Water) 

What gives us strength, nutrition, tone of muscles, healthy glow and lustre, tejas is the energy of digestion and transformation of everything we take in through all of our senses.

 

Healthy Tejas manifests as: 

  • Cellular intelligence and metabolic activity  

  • Healthy body temperature

  • Clear and strong vision and colour perception  

  • Beautiful complexion of eyes & skin  

  • Courage

  • Mental clarity

  • Intelligence and perception

  • Stamina

  • Strong digestion

  • Upward movement: going beyond fear and confusion  

  • Stimulates udāna vayu which raises intelligence and levels of consciousness

 

Weak Tejas manifests as:

  • Weak digestion

  • Pale skin or deep red skin

  • Inflammation

  • Constant injury

  • Acid reflux
     

How to keep Tejas strong and healthy:

  • Speaking our truth and avoid gossip

  • Avoiding negative thinking and enforce positive thinking

  • Mantras

  • Drishti

  • Meditating

  • Empowering others to empower themselves

  • Standing tall and strong

  • Using our words to inspire, uplift and elevate

  • Focusing

  • Concentrating

  • Courage - moving beyond self-imposed limitations

  • Visualizing the Sun at the navel

  • Receiving the Sun's rays

  • Asanas - Especially Sun salutations, backbends, standing twists and balancing 

Ojas (Positive expression of Eart and Water)

“When ojas is diminished the person is fearful, weak, and always worried —
S/he has disorders in the sense organs, and lacks in lustre and mental abilities  and is rough and emaciated.”  Charaka Samhita. 

Healthy Ojas manifests as:

  • Clear radiant complexion

  • Strong immune system

  • Vitality, the lustre of eyes and the glow of the skin 

  • Bright aura

  • Cheerfulness, energy and enthusiasm

  • Youthfulness

  • High threshold for stress

  • Mental clarity

  • Creativity

  • Compassion, contentment, love 

  • Clarity, expansion of consciousness

  • Serenity

  • Healthy and strong joints

  • Radiance

 

Weak Ojas manifests as:

  • Shy 

  • Fatigued

  • Sluggish

  • Weak

  • Anxious

  • Worried

  • Poor complexion

  • Poor appetite

  • Weak and dry skin and bones

 

How to keep Ojas strong:

  • Eating nourishing meals at a moderate pace

  • Not eating in a hurry or while doing other things such as walking, driving or computing

  • Not eating when angry, sad or upset

  • Not eating if the previous meal still hasn’t been digested 

  • Eating balanced meals  

  • Meditating

  • Journaling

  • Expressing gratitude

  • Calling on the feeling of contentment

  • Focusing on positive thinking

  • Water ritual

  • Moon bathing

  • Swimming

  • Tasting

  • Walking barefoot on the earth

  • Gardening

  • Devotion

  • Using aromas

  • Asanas - Especially grounding the legs, moving slowly, feeling the feet, being devotional and forward bends

Ayurvedic Lifestyle Practices

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The Magical Neti Pot
I neti daily and can't imagine life without it:). Typically it's recommended 2-3 times/ week as it can dry the nasal passage which is why I finish my neti practice with oiling of the nostrils called nyasa. I have not written anything about nyasa yet (coming soon). 

Download my neti 101 guidelines here