Ahymsin Newsletter: Yoga is Samadhi
  AHYMSIN Newsletter, Issue - September 2012  

Yoga Nidra for Making Mother’s Day Cards

by Sopa Tamachotipong

On the occasion of Mother Day (August 12), Himalayan Yoga Samadhi (Thailand) has arranged an activity “Loving Mom with a card from child’s hand and heart”. The objective was to strengthen the bond between mothers and children, especially for those who do not have a privilege of living together. The card can convey the feeling of love and care from children to mothers.

The activity took place on August 4th, one week before the Mother’s Day so that we had enough time to send the card to the mothers. There were 10 participants, including an instructor (myself); some joined us for the first time. We started with a 5 minute meditation session followed by a short lecture on the topic so that people understand what is yoga nidra, how to practice it and what are the benefits one can derive from the practice.

For this activity, we experimented with the benefits of yoga nidra in the form of creativity, which we used to produce the (most beautiful) card for our beloved mother. During the lecture, someone asked “I never created any kind of art work before, could I do it?” In fact, all participants had never produced cards before as well and thus this provided a good opportunity for all to experience for themselves.

Before starting yoga nidra practice, we started with joint & gland exercise which last for about 20 minutes in order to stretch our bodies, make them more relax and flexible. Then, let them lie down on their backs and established diaphragmatic breathing – which is a very important component of the practice. The diaphragmatic breathing allows our bodies to remain fully relaxed and our lungs to receive oxygen to the maximum capacity. In diaphragmatic breathing, only the stomach (navel region) areas (front, left, right and back sides) move up and down with our breath rhythm while the chest remain still.

Then, let them moved into shavasana (corpse) position, with arms and legs comfortably apart from the bodies to start the practice of yoga nidra. We relaxed the muscles along the bodies, one by one from head to toes. Another important thing is that we need to maintain our awareness throughout the practice without falling asleep. This basic version of yoga nidra took around 30 minutes. We then sat up and started producing cards while still maintained the relaxed state of the mind.

The activity was full of fun, joyous and friendly feeling. The creativity of all participants filled the room. They were very eager to complete the tasks, seizing the scissors from each other to cut the paper and clothes and coming up with designs to the best of their abilities. After slightly more than one hour, they completed their cards and felt unbelievable that they could make it. Although this was only the basic level of yoga nidra, but it can lead to new creativity. Frequent practices should lead to even greater benefits.

I felt very happy to see everybody happy and benefited from this activity and hope they would give the cards to their mothers and that the card would help improve their relationship.

Thank you Khun Thaniya Kevalee for providing all the support (expenses and venue). My appreciation also went to volunteer members of Asian Health Institute (AHI) in Japan for sending me wonderful birthday cards all these years. Your kindness was an inspiration behind the idea to arrange this activity and I also used those cards as my teaching materials. I would like to express my gratitude to Swami Veda Bharati, my Guru and all the Masters who have passed on the knowledge of yoga nidra from the ancient to present time. Finally, I would like to thank you all the participants who contributed to the success of this activity.