Bramacharya – The 4th Yama

Bramacharya translated means ‘directing our energy to the Divine, to the Sacred’. For many dedicated Yogis, that is interpreted as a call to celibacy, so that all sexual energies may be directed toward awakening and spiritual evolution.  A broader understanding of Bramacharya can also be a wise use of all of our energies; making choices that support our highest good and the health of our spirit, mind and body. 

Our energy is powerful and influential, and as we learn to take responsibility for it and master it through the practices of yoga, we can direct it toward our good and the good of others. When we use our energy and our body in unconscious or careless ways, we often suffer the consequences and can hurt others in some way. Yoga practice empowers us to be present and attentive, awake in this moment in a way that supports our freedom to make wise choices. When we are, we can make appropriate choices to direct our words, actions and thoughts to serve what is highest in us, and in doing so be a positive example and influence on others. 

morning chants devotional kirtan Devi Ma
Morning chants and devotional songs

Our energy is a gift and our sexuality is sacred, and when we express it with others in the spirit of sacredness the best in us shines. All of our choices about how we treat our own body, the bodies of others, and the body of the Earth, in fact, really do matter. When we choose to elevate our energies to love and respect in spirit, mind and body, we uplift our hearts and the hearts of others. Remembering the sacred in all you do, say and think….that is Bramacharya.  

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