So often, throughout the chaos of external life— we forget to cleanse, and I’m not just talking about cleaning out the closet. I’m referring to cleansing our bodies, minds, and souls. In yoga, saucha is a term that refers to purity, cleanliness and clearness. Saucha is said to reveal our joyful nature and the yearning to know the Self blooms.
Detox the body. People mostly think with a detox, they have to sacrifice something. Rewire the negative connotation of sacrifice and see the ultimate goal of change. Maybe just try to eliminate soda, fast food, or sugar. Different things work for different people, but intentional withdraw puts us out of our comfort zone to create substantial change by noticing how our body reacts or responds.
Meditation for the mind. Meditation is not having a clear mind, it is practicing one. Meditation is known to increase activity in the pre-frontal cortex of the brain that is associated with positive moods. When the intention of a healing practice is put in place, and that space is then carried throughout the day, it automatically becomes an integrated life practice to find healing in current circumstances or situations. Yoga is literally retraining the parasympathetic nervous system to take on some of the pressure of the sympathetic nervous system when stress is activated, therefore learning how to respond rather than react.
Listen to your soul. We are taught to obey external regulations of culture around us. This disables us from strengthening our spiritual intuition within. The physical practice of yoga, known as asana, in combination with study of the yoga philosophies, such as the Yoga Sutras, yamas and niyamas, and the 8 limbs will profoundly enlighten the importance of saucha in every day life. When we have clutter, negativity, toxicity, and chaos— our atmosphere is not conducive to peace, freedom, and contentment.
The Dalai Lama quotes how we prioritize what’s culturally important: “We sacrifice our health in order to make wealth, then we sacrifice our wealth in order to get back our health.” He understood, in order to be in the state of pure bliss that we have to be a healthy. We have to purify— body, mind, and soul.
Kelsey Reed Armbruster
Founder of Innercise Yoga, LLC