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What Is Sadhana?

Updated: Jan 15, 2022

Sadhana means daily spiritual practice. The aspect of “daily” is not to be neglected at all, since you will create an important foundation through a very regular practice of spirituality.

This requires a certain amount of self-discipline, which in turn, gives you the opportunity to express infinity in your own self.

In Kundalini Yoga, the practice of Sadhana has an important meaning, which is why it’s recommended to all yogis and those wishing to live a more disciplined or spiritual life.

Through Sadhana, you open yourself up to the possibility to perceive and finally overcome any patterns that lead you away from your higher consciousness. It is a consciously performed practice that is meant to serve you.

Sadhana is first and foremost about developing your own daily yoga and meditation practice in a conscious way.

Here are the 6 Steps of a Traditional Kundalini Sadhana.

Classically, in the two and a half hours before sunrise, you practice the following things in this specific order.

1. Recitation

The Japji Sahib is a prayer from Sikhism, which is recited and chanted in a meditative way at the start of the day. Known as the prayer for the soul.

2. Chanting

The “Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo” mantra is used to begin all Kundalini practice as this help you connect with your higher self and also the Kundalini yoga lineage.

3. Kriya

Next, you practice a Kriya (set of asana) of Kundalini Yoga to keep your physical body fit, strengthen your circulation, release tension, and stimulate the Kundalini energy within you. A Kriya consists of movements, breath-work, chanting, and meditation. The choice of the Kriya is not prescribed, although certain Kriyas are particularly suitable for Sadhana. Those that work on the respiration, glands, nerves, and spine in a balanced way are especially useful. The Kriya should be generally energising.

As usual, the Kriya ends with deep relaxation and is followed by meditation.

Within the framework of Sadhana, the meditation cannot be chosen freely. The meditation “Long Ek Ong Kar” is always prescribed.

This meditation, also known as the Adi Shakti Mantra or Morning Call, is chanted for seven minutes. It is a very powerful mantra that awakens the Kundalini energy and the relationship between the individual and the universal soul.

After this energetic mantra prelude, there are six more mantras. Below are the names of each mantra, which are chanted in this order along with timings and length:

  • Waah Yantee, Kar Yantee (for your intuition): 7 minutes

  • Mool Mantra (for the foundation of your soul’s consciousness): 7 minutes

  • Sat Siri, Siri Akal (for the awareness of your timelessness): 7 minutes

  • Raake Rakenehar (for complete protection): 7 minutes

  • Wahe Guru Wahe Jio (for ecstasy and infinite bliss): 22 minutes

  • Guru Ram Das (for humility, relaxation, self-healing, and emotional relief): 5 minutes

All in all, you chant for a total of 62 minutes.

Meditation like this can be seen as an instrument through which you can cleanse your subconscious of fears. Fears can then be viewed neutrally, which in turn, takes away their power over you. This opens space for freedom and flexibility.

Meditating in the morning has the particular power to free you from worries and allows you to be aware of any projections you may face during the day. This prevents further fears from accumulating in your subconscious as well as consciousness.

6. Final Closing

The final part of Sadhana is to close out this daily Kundalini practice by chanting the Long-time to Sunshine Song (which starts with “May the long time sun shine upon you” and is always sung at the close of any Kundalini class) and finally, the chanting of a long “Sat Nam” (which means “truth is my identity.”)

Why Practice a Daily Sadhana?

In total, a typical Sadhana lasts about two and a half hours, which can be traced back to the law of karma. This law says that you will receive back 10 times everything you give.

That means if you dedicate a tenth of your day (the time of Sadhana) to your higher consciousness, then you make sure that the whole day is covered by that energy coming back tenfold.

You are accordingly energized throughout the day and in connection with your higher consciousness.

It is believed that during the time before sunrise, the angle between the sun and earth has a supporting effect on your meditation practice. This is why Sadhana is always practiced in the early morning hours.

Furthermore, during this time – the so-called ambrosial hours – there is a lot of prana (life-force energy) and your body is more focused on the aspect of purification.

What Are the Effects of Sadhana?

Sadhana has a profound effect on you – on the level of body, mind, and soul. Therefore, it is a holistic practice. It creates physical and mental awareness and keeps the mind clear.

You create and train your meditative mind, which brings you into neutrality. To view things or see things from a space of neutrality is a central ability that requires some practice. Continuous practice, for example, within the context of Sadhana, is very beneficial for you.

Moreover, your actions as a consequence are carefully directed. The discipline that emanates from your body and mind ultimately serves your soul.

During Sadhana, you create a constant level of energy and the willingness to face the day. In addition, you create the potential for perseverance and build willpower, confidence, and the ability to concentrate.

Finally, your spiritual practice also provides you with spiritual fitness. A certain, steady level of consciousness is maintained, which in turn, elevates other souls around you.

This is an immense and very enriching force that comes from you. Always be aware of that! You are a being that carries energy inwards – into yourself, as well as outwards.

How Can You Apply Sadhana to Your Daily Life?

Perhaps you now think that practicing Sadhana is quite a lot to accomplish. But that’s not how it’s supposed to be.

Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to practice two and a half hours of Sadhana every morning starting tomorrow at all costs – this is really only the absolute ideal case.

Of course, each of us has our own system of commitments – family life, values, preferences, sleeping needs, and more – in which we are involved. So it might be that two and a half extra hours in the morning just doesn’t work for you – and that’s okay!

Sadhana is first and foremost about developing your own daily yoga and meditation practice in conscious action. And this can also consist of only three minutes every day if more is not possible for you (in the beginning).

Sadhana is first and foremost about developing your own daily yoga and meditation practice in a conscious way. So you can start without too much pressure and develop your own individual Sadhana for yourself and shape it over time. The practice of Sadhana should enrich you, strengthen you for the day, and not be an additional instrument in your life that puts you under pressure.

In fact, after the first few weeks of Sadhana practice, many people feel an inner urge to maintain this practice and follow it on a daily basis. Then the practice serves you and feels effortless.

Just try it by choosing one or more yoga exercises that you like. You might be able to add a few minutes of meditation to this and you have already created a small Sadhana set for yourself. Your soul will likely thank you!

Practice a particular kriya or mantra every single day for the same amount of time. Based on the number of days you do this, here is how it will affect your habits:

40 Days: Practice every day for 40 days straight. This will break any negative habits that block you from the expansion possible through the kriya or mantra.

90 Days: Practice every day for 90 days straight. This will establish a new habit in your conscious and subconscious minds based on the effect of the kriya or mantra. It will change you in a very deep way.

120 Days: Practice every day for 120 days straight. This will confirm the new habit of consciousness created by the kriya or mantra. The positive benefits of the kriya get integrated permanently into your psyche.

1000 Days: Practice every day for 1000 days straight. This will allow you to master the new habit of consciousness that the kriya or mantra has promised. No matter what the challenge, you can call on this new habit to serve you.

By doing a 40, 90, 120 or 1000 day special sadhana, you can rewire that chain reaction. You can develop new, deeply ingrained habits that serve your highest good.

My personal Sadhana is an hour and a half, where we have been practicing a 3 1-minute warm-up a short warm upset, and then a kriya, followed by a 31 minute meditation with the intention of practicing it for 90 days straight o get a deeper understanding of my own intuition.

If you're interested in starting a personal practice, you are more than welcome to join us online via Zoom. We start a new 40 days Sadhana on Friday 11th December 2020. Why not join?

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