Yoga Nidra Artwork
Season 1 - Episode 12

Vijnanamaya Kosha

45 min - Practice


Kristin guides us in a longer Yoga Nidra practice to tune into the subtle world and the space of inner knowing. You will become familiar with your inner teacher.
What You'll Need: No props needed

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As we move now into this slightly longer Yoganidra practice, we're moving into the more subtle world of our inner teacher, this space of inner knowing, of wisdom, what the yogis call the vignana maya kosha. And since it is a slightly longer practice and there's a little bit more involved in the practice, a couple of things might happen. You might be pulled towards unconsciousness, towards sleep. So if you start to notice that you're drifting off, totally understandable, but if you wish not to, there's a few tricks. You can start to flutter your eyes just a tiny bit open and receive some light through the eyes which might just wake the body enough without jolting it back into the external world. Or roll to one side and finish the Yoganidra there on your side. There's another trick is as you're resting on your back with your arms by your side, just bending one elbow and propping just the elbow to the floor with your fingers up towards the ceiling. And it doesn't take very much muscular effort at all just to balance there. And if you start to fall asleep, your arm will start to fall and sometimes that's enough to bring you back gently into a slightly more awake state. So please feel free to use that if necessary. You could also go the other way during these visuals. We're moving past the attributes and the labels and the ego and all of these parts of ourselves that begin to congest and cloud our view of this inner wisdom. And sometimes it can be a little bit uncomfortable. You might see different parts of yourself that you really don't like to pay attention to. So if that begins to happen, totally understandable. And please feel free to pause your technique that we're doing to open the eyes gently to take that Ishvara mudra that we talked about in the earlier tutorial. Or simply pause and just view it with compassion in this safe little nest that you've created inside these practices. So that being said, let's get to it. You can come down onto your backs. And since it is a slightly longer practice, hedge your bets and set up really comfortably. Use any props, any support, maybe a blanket on top of you. You want to be warm and comfortable so you can move beyond the physical body into these more subtle sheets. Take your time to adjust. Heels a little wider than the hips, the arms a little bit away from the body. Although the palms are face up, let's have the thumbs a little bit higher than the pinky fingers so there's no need to overly rotate the arms which might start to pull on the inner elbow after a while. If you're using an eye covering, I suggest something quite light, maybe not an eye pillow because after a while that starts to feel heavy and it might distract you. Please now make any final adjustments that you think you need so you can be quiet in the body and find some stillness here. If it's helpful, take a deep breath in through the nose and fill the body. Then exhale through an open mouth, sighing out. Maybe one more time a nice big breath in through the nose, filling up more than you think you can. Open the mouth and just sigh out, releasing, feeling the earth rise up to meet you. Relax your breath, no longer having to stretch it or shape it in any way. Now recall your sankalpa, the sincere whispering of the heart and please repeat silently your sankalpa three times. Feel a sense of gratitude in your body, the feeling of gratitude which is the very fertile ground for these sankalpas to be placed. Feel what it would feel like if this had already taken hold, if the sankalpa had already manifested, what would it feel like? Bring your awareness down into the base of your body all the way down to the feet. Feel or imagine as if there's a warm golden liquid bathing the feet. Feel the feet heavy. Feel this warm golden liquid start to rise into the ankles. The shin and calf bathed in this liquid, the shins and calves heavy. It moves up through the knees and thighs, the seat, the sole of the pelvis, the legs and pelvis heavy. Open liquid warm as it moves through the abdomen and spine. Bathing the heart and chest. Feel the torso heavy. The warm golden liquid pouring down through each shoulder, down each arm, cooling in the palms. Feel the arms heavy. It bathes the throat and neck, head and face, warm and soft. Feel the head heavy, the whole body heavy.

Bring your awareness now to the space between your eyebrows. See or feel a point of light in between the eyebrows. Feel or experience a point of light in the throat, point of light in your right shoulder, right elbow, right wrist, right thumb, so that you can feel the second finger, third finger, fourth finger, fifth finger, point of light in the right wrist, right elbow, right shoulder, throat. Feel and experience a point of light in your left shoulder, left elbow, left wrist, left thumb, second finger, point of light. Third finger, fourth finger, fifth finger, point of light in the left wrist, left elbow, third finger, left shoulder, throat, heart center, right chest, heart center, left chest, right chest, heart center, point of light in the navel, pubic bone, right hip, right knee, point of light in the right ankle, right big toe, second toe, third toe, fourth toe, fourth toe, fifth toe, point of light in the right ankle, right knee, right hip, pubic bone, point of light in the left hip, left knee, left ankle, left big toe, second toe, third toe, fourth toe, fifth toe, point of light in the left ankle, left knee, left hip, left hip, pubic bone, point of light in the navel, heart center, throat, space between the eyebrows, I'll see all of these lights, these points of light as if they're stars giggling like a constellation in the vast open sky above. Gently bring your awareness to the very subtle movement of the breath that remains in the nostrils, like two rivers that merge back to a point in the midbrain, find a mental alternate nostril breath, just feel as you happen to inhale the breath rising through the left nostril, as you happen to exhale descends through the right nostril, as you next inhale moves up the right nostril, you exhale through the left, inhale through the left, exhale through the right, no effort, inhale through the right, exhale through the left, begin to count back on this mental alternate nostril breath from 54 to 1, so it might go a little something like this, inhale through the left 54, exhale through the right 54, inhale through the right 53, exhale through the left 53, inhale left 52, exhale right 52, please continue the breath effortless, counting back on the mental alternate nostril. If you get lost, just start again, if you finish early, just start again, as many times as you need. Thank you.

Thank you. Thank you. Keep relaxing your effort and just observing the mental alternate nostril breath. Thank you. Thank you.

Let go of the technique. Letting go of the mental alternate nostril and the counting. Let's relax even further through the breath and the body. Feel as if you're sitting in the middle of the brain and peering out in the back of the forehead what the yogis call the screen of the mind and just aware of any colors, images, shapes on the screen of your mind. They might come easily or feel more elusive today.

Just sitting in the middle of the brain peering out at the space behind the forehead and the screen of the mind. And just notice what arises. Thank you. Thank you. Now feel your body cold.

Your whole body cold. As if you're standing in the middle of an iceberg with nothing to protect you, feel your whole body cold. Your whole body cold. Feel your body hot. Your whole body hot.

If you're standing in the middle of a desert in the blazing sun, feel your whole body hot. Your whole body hot. Now feel the whole body heavy. The whole body is heavy. As if it weighs a thousand pounds, the whole body heavy. The whole body heavy.

Feel the body light. The whole body light. Like a feather. So light it could lift away from the earth, the whole body light. Feel and experience the body light. Now see yourself. See yourself walking through a dense forest.

Hundreds of tall trees. The leaves fluttering in the breeze. Walking through the forest until you see a clearing in front of you. A little patch of warm grass. Begin to take a seat in the warm grass, comfortably looking out all around you, surrounded by these tall trees in every direction.

And as you peacefully sit here looking out at the trees, you begin silently to call out your own name. And each time you do, an aspect of you begins to emerge out from behind one of the trees. A part of you, an attribute, a trait, a label, a mask that you wear begins to emerge out from behind each tree every time you call your own name. You might see you as a man or a woman. You as a daughter or son, mother or father.

You as a teacher, you as a student. You as secure, you as insecure. You as kind, you as inconsiderate. Keep calling your name and watching these aspects of you emerge out from behind each of these trees. There's no need to judge, create any story, just with compassion, observing each attribute, aspect, or mask each time you call your own name.

There's no need to judge, just with compassion, observing each other, observing each other. Keep calling your own name. Keep calling your own name and just observing the parts of you step forward. And as you sit there peacefully, seeing these hundreds of aspects of you, you see or an experience, a beam of light from overhead start to pour down through the crown down into the body. And like you were this multifaceted jewel, this light begins to refract out in all directions into each and every one of these attributes or labels.

And they become subsumed in the light of who you really are. The part of you that is not transient, that has no attribute or label, the part of you that is just unbound, infinite potential, rest in that light and the knowledge of who you really are. Thank you. Recall your Sankopa. Silently repeat your Sankopa three times.

Feel a sense of gratitude, the body flooded with gratitude. A very fertile soil in which we plant that Sankopa, knowing for sure it will take hold. Thank you. Thank you. Bring your attention to the space behind the navel.

And see or feel an almond shaped flame resting there. Feel its heat warming, grounding your body, recharging your system. Without opening the eyes, just clearly see your body resting here in the room around you. Begin to deepen the breath. Slide the thumb over each fingertip, the tongue across your teeth, gently waking the body.

It might feel nice to reach your arms overhead and give yourself a big morning stretch. Taking your time, bending one knee at a time, placing your feet on the floor or padding. Rolling over to the right side in a fetal position can create a little pillow with your right arm for your head. Finding a moment to honor these practices, your level of engagement in the practice and the experience that's born out of that engagement. It's really the experience of you in all of its layers.

Keeping the eyes closed, just lazily peel yourself up to an easy seat. You can bring one hand over the other hand, over the heart center, bow your head to the heart, holding a seat of that practice, your experience, your intention. Even as you start to flutter your eyes open, knowing you can bring it back through each moment of your living. Namaste.


Laura M
I really needed this. Thank you so much!!

Kristin Leal
1 person likes this.
I'm so happy to hear that it worked for you:) Thank you for being here Laura !
Bridgid M
1 person likes this.
This truly was a wonderful practice ~ Thank You! 
Kristin Leal
Bridgid M I'm very happy you enjoyed it! Thank you for practicing with me:)
David G-
Hi Kristen: that was a complicated script and compassionate guidance. My analytical mind was active; I appreciated the artistry of the points of light becoming a constellation, and the simplicity of desert, iceberg and forest clearing imagery, but the psychological exploration of self-centered and selfless states of mind was more powerful to experience. I had difficulty imagining the masks, but I dropped into memories that illustrated some of these David Goldsteins. It was more productive that way. Regardless, that is a unique technique, and I look forward to my next practice. 
Kristin Leal
1 person likes this.
Amazing reflection David Goldstein ! Thanks for sharing it with me:)

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