We live in a punishing city where there’s little time to unwind and take stock—we’re constantly shuttling from our beds, to work, to dinner and back to bed. So who has the time to meditate? Who can afford to take an hour out of their day to stare into nothingness? Adam White finds out.
PRANAYAMA & MEDITATION
Pranayama is the art of breath control: By concentrating on your own breath you’re able to clear your mind of other thoughts. “The first part in meditation is connecting the body to the mind,” explains Dileep. “If we calm down the body first, then we can reach the mind. Pranayama is like a bridge between the two.” Two additional styles of meditation are coming soon:
Constantly tense? Yoga Nidra, or yogic sleep, is for you. Students lie on the ground and are instructed to consciously relax each part of their body separately, inducing a state of “conscious sleep.” “It’s just amazing to watch,” says Martina. “Those different layers of awareness create a deep, profound level of relaxation.”
Meditation doesn’t have to be static. In Movement Meditation students are guided to move their bodies in steady, mindful way. “To many people is meditation is sitting with legs crossed and eyes closed,” says Dileep. “But if we do that, we can feel sleepy! Movement awakens the body. It’s bridging the mind and body together.”
In Nada Yoga classes, students concentrate on sounds—from crystal singing bowls to chanting and singing. “When you go through life, most of what you hear is terrible noise and negative thoughts,” says Martina. But in Nada Yoga, “The vibrations of sound go through your bones. That purity really clears you.”
If you’re worried about being able to block out the world—then explore
Trataka Yoga, in which students fix their gaze on an object such as a flickering candle flame to focus the mind. “80% of people have no control of their emotions,” says Dileep. “5-10 minutes of meditation will really help to manage tensions, worries, or challenges.”
You do. Because the truth is, meditation doesn’t have to be a complicated, mystical process. Thanks to a new series of 30-minute meditation classes at Pure Yoga, it doesn’t even have to take long. Meditation and mindfulness have been scientifically proven to reduce anxiety, stress and depression. It’s a tool which allows you to balance your emotions, to shift away from negative
thinking and to deal with crises or stress in a calm manner. And with noted meditators including Richard Branson, Oprah Winfrey, Mark Zuckerberg and Katy Perry, the world is embracing the art of meditation.
“They say with meditation, the mind is like fl owing oil, not fl owing water,” explains Dileep Puliyolly, an instructor at Pure Yoga. “When water fl ows, it splutters. But oil flows smoothly—the mind is very clear and very calm. Nothing disturbs it. Whatever comes, you can accept.” From July 13, Pure Yoga is launching three new types of meditation classes across all of its venues in Asia, with an additional two more on the way, on top of its current 60-minutes meditation classes. The idea? For people to come and try all varieties, to discover what’s right for them. And a shorter 30-minute time slot means it’s easier to take time out, even in a packed Hong Kong schedule. You don’t even need to pack your gym clothes. Martina Lee, Country Managing Teacher at Pure Yoga, has a few tips for fi rst-time meditators. “Sometimes people think ‘oh, I should think a certain way, I should be really
peaceful.’ And when they’re not, they get frustrated. But the most important thing is to let go of any expectations: to be open and receptive.” After all—now you have the time for it.
For more information: www.pure-yoga.com/hongkong