AWAKEN THE SUN WITHIN.
108 SURYA NAMSAKAR
Recognizing its global appeal, on 11 December 2014, the United Nations proclaimed 21st June as the International Day of Yoga by passing resolution 69/131. Since then, this day aims to raise awareness worldwide of the limitless benefits that one can gain from practicing yoga regularly.
Surya Namaskars, also known as sun salutations, were practiced thousands of years ago by people who may have worshipped the Sun. Surya means sun, the creator of all things and Nama means to bow or to worship. There are about 12 mantras to be chanted to offer our prayers and gratitude to the Sun. Apart from offering a prayer and gratitude, it is also a wonderful exercise. It involves all the parts of the body and helps to increase stamina, strength and endurance with regular practice.
It is called ‘The Ultimate Asana’ and one keeps hearing from various Yoga instructors that a simple practice of Surya Namaskar is adequate to keep you fit, supple and mentally alert acting on the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of the body.
In short, it helps in
- improving flexibility and strength (physical benefit)
- calming the mind and activate blocked chakras of the body (emotional and mental benefit) and
- cultivating the mind when mantra chanting is involved (spiritual benefit).
What is the significance of 108:
- In yoga, the number 108 has significance as the number representing spiritual completion.
- Sun salutations are often performed in nine rounds of the 12 postures which totals 108poses
- A yoga mala consists of 108 sun salutations.
- Pranayama is also often completed in cycles of 108.
- It is important Because of their ties to Buddhism, 108 has become an important symbolic number in a number of martial arts styles.
- According to Marma Adi and Ayurveda, there are 108 pressure points in the body, where consciousness and flesh intersect to give life to the living being.