Cat From The Mat

Freshly Squeezed OJAS

It's a new year.  A time for new beginnings, new intentions, New Year resolutions.   It can also be a time of ramping up and revving the engine, assuming your gas tank is full and you have had a tune-up over the break.  But if you feel like you "just made it through the holidays,” then perhaps you could benefit from some freshly squeezed OJAS. 

Ayurveda (the science of yoga) defines the three necessary ingredients for vitality: a healthy body (Ojas), innate intelligence (Tejas), and energy levels (Prana).  Balancing these essential forces is the key to your longevity and resiliency.  Tejas is the discernment of your body and mind, which directs your use of energy, like your thoughts and how you process life. Prana is useable energy, known as your life force.  Your oxygen intake is an example of how prana feeds your system, not to mention how food enriches.  And Ojas is the glue that binds together your heart, mind, and body.  


Ojas is a Sanskrit word that means "vigor."  It is the fluid of life.  According to wikipedia, "Ojas is the ultimate refined result of digestion, metabolism, absorption and assimilation. It is a wholesome biochemical substance that nourishes all body tissues and has a direct influence on the nature and quality of physical, mental and emotional life.  Depleted ojas can result in weakness, fatigue, and a compromised immune system."


If this sounds familiar, you are not alone.  Daily stress zaps your energy, if you do not take time to replenish.  Do not, however, confuse self-care with self-indulgence.  Put the oxygen mask on yourself first, and then apply it to others. You will have more to offer, from a place of abundance.

Thus far, I've been fortunate to have copious amounts of energy.  Growing up, I could have been one of those kids on a leash.  Whether traveling to teach yoga or a filming on-location, I often find myself voyaging from one place to another, one project to the next.  I get so involved in the creative process that I forget to fill up my reserve tanks.  When I am out of gas, I am not as effective as I might be.  And this past year, I found myself deficient in vim and vigor.

Yoga builds ojas, tejas, and prana.  It also helps sustain homeostasis on physical, mental, emotional, and energetic levels.  So if you are feeling run-down or needing more nectar in your life, consider ways to recharge.  Your yoga practice is whatever helps you connect inside, whether asana, meditation, biking, running, dancing, cooking, singing, laughing, sleeping, to name a few.  Identify what nourishes you and take care of yourself.  Find ways to make life juicier, drinking in more ojas.  It's not just for breakfast anymore!


Happy New Year!

Cat From The Mat

January 2014