Planting the Seeds of Intention
By Eva-joan Ritchie - April 19’
Some of you may be familiar with the Sanskrit word for resolve, intention or will: sankalpa.
A sankalpa is often used at the beginning of a Yoga Nidra practice, as a way to focus the mind on our heart’s deepest desire and to give us direction, as well as the means to bring forth what we most deeply long for.
When we speak of desire, in this instance we are not referring to an egoic want (eg: I want chocolate right now!) but rather to what our heart longs for, what truly and deeply matters to us in that moment. For example, what brings you to practice in that moment?
It is something that allows us to be aligned with the highest yet deepest part of ourselves, and which brings us back in touch with it whenever we get distracted/ forget.
Although a sankalpa is most commonly formulated at the beginning of a yoga or meditation practice, it is also useful to call upon in times of uncertainty or doubt, especially around one’s purpose. The more we are in touch with what truly matters to us, the more we align ourselves with that vibration (by feeling it in our body) and the more we can then channel the energy and the wisdom that are already within us, to realize our dreams.
Which means that there will either be a feeling of expansion and openness through the body: aligned & in the flow with the truth of who you are, or sensations of tightness and constriction: misaligned & not in the flow.
How to uncover your Sankalpa:
In a sense, your sankalpa is already within you as your deepest truth so you do not have to be looking for it! It’s simply a matter of listening
- sit or lay down & be still
- quiet your mind by focusing on body sensations
- take a few deep breaths & relax your attention
- start with where you are
- formulate your intention in the present tense ie: “I care for my body”, “I am healthy” (rather than “I want to lose weight”)
- focus on the feelings in your body rather than just a thought in the mind
- remember your resolve and get in touch with it as often as you can