Yoga and the Subtle Body 瑜伽和精微身

 

In general terms the subtle body is the energy in a living being that differentiates them from a corpse. Someone who has just died has the exact same number of protons, neutrons, and electrons, but something is missing. Even if we try to put electricity back into a dead body, we are as of yet unable to force a body to live again. Some organizing energy pervades us as a living being, and it is perhaps the most important part of a yoga practice. So why have so few people heard of it, and why do so few teachers seem to know much about it? This is because yoga, as it exists in most of the contemporary world, has been strongly affected by the West, and the West’s obsession with the purely physical. Yoga never had, as its purpose, the tonification of muscles or the loss of body fat. While those were always understood to be side effects, the subtle body was meant to be the focus of practice.

简而言之,精微身是一种让生命体有别于尸体的能量。一些刚刚死去的人体内拥有完全相同数量的质子、中子和电子,但是有些东西缺失了。即便我们尝试把电流充到一具死去的身体上,我们也不能够让它死而复生。一些有组织的能量遍布我们周身,带给我们生命,而且它可能是瑜伽练习中最重要的组成部分。那么为什么如此之少的人听说过它,又为什么如此之少的老师似乎真正了解它呢?这是因为瑜伽,存在于大部分当代世界中时,已经在很大程度上被西方世界及其对于纯粹物质的迷恋所影响。瑜伽从未曾以强健肌肉或减肥作为目标。那些一直都只是副产品,精微身才是练习的关键所在。

The subtle body is a structure of energetic rivers that permeate the body, and perhaps even a short distance beyond the physical body. They run alongside our thoughts and emotions, and function to a certain degree as the bridge between the mental and physical. It is also the simple fact that we can listen to our bodies, feel a wide ocean of sensations, and then make use of it all.

精微身是一个由遍布全身的能量河流所组成的结构体,而且可能与肉身之间的距离非常短。它们与我们的念头和情绪并行,而且在相当程度上起到了意识与身体的桥梁作用。这也是一个简单的事实,我们可以倾听我们的身体,感受各种各样的感官觉受,然后对它加以运用。

How do we use it?

我们如何运用它?

We must know the various dimensions of a living body (see below).

We must understand the layers that make up a living human. The outermost layer is the simple physical body. It is the thing we can eventually take apart; it has the anatomy most of the yoga world is obsessing over. Underneath that is the layer of breath. This is the simple breath: the gas that we must continuously inhale and exhale to keep the body functioning. Underneath this is the main component of the subtle body: prana. This energy is said to be physical, but more subtle than sunlight. It runs in channels that can not be found with a scalpel and microscope; tens of thousands of rivers of energy permeating the body. Even more subtle, the layer underneath prana, is the realm of the mind. A layer that is not physical, and that encompasses all our various modes of thought. Emotions, conceptions, discrimination between things… All of this is at this fourth level of the body. One layer deeper and we come to our karmic seeds: the very patterns that form our world and the way we experience it.

我们必须知道组成一个生命体的各个层面。最外层是我们粗重的肉身。它是我们最终可以拆分的;它拥有了令大部分瑜伽世界都为之着迷的解剖学。在它下面的那一层是呼吸。只是简单的呼吸:那些我们必须持续地吸入和呼出来保持身体运转的气体。再下一层是精微身的主要组成部分:气。这种能量据说是物质性的,但是比阳光还更精微。它在我们无法通过解剖刀和显微镜找到的通道中运行;成千上万的能量河流遍布全身。比气再精微一点的下一层是意识的领域。这一层不是物质性的,它并且包含了我们所有各种各样的思维模式。情绪,概念,对事物的分别……所有这一切都在我们身体的第四层中。再深一个层面,我们就来到了业力的种子:构成我们的世界以及我们以何种方式经历的这个世界的模式。

Because we are made of all these levels, and they affect each other, yoga functions. Yoga brings us peace and sometimes pleasure because, through the purposeful movement of the gross body, we change all the levels underneath. Yet the transformation is slow: the physical body improves slowly, but almost all the mental benefits of the practice disappear as soon as we leave the studio. The secret to making a yoga practice function most powerfully, the way it was intended, is to work at both the inner and outer levels simultaneously. By using the physical body in the asanas, and then making sure to keep the mental layer focused and active, we put the full power of our being behind the practice of yoga.

因为我们由所有的这些层面组成,而且它们之间相互影响,所以瑜伽可以起作用。瑜伽带给我们平静,并且有时候能带给我们愉悦是因为通过有意识地移动肉身,我们改变了所有下面的层面。然而这种转变是缓慢的:肉身慢慢地在改善,但是在我们离开瑜伽馆的那一刻,几乎所有瑜伽带给意识上的好处都消失了。让瑜伽练习发挥其最强大作用的秘密,也是它本来运作的方式,就是同时在内在和外在的层面下功夫。通过体式练习运用到肉身,并且确保意识层面的专注和活力,我们就把生命的全部力量都运用在了瑜伽练习上。

Why is it important?

为什么重要?

There are an ever increasing number of emergency room visits per year that are caused by a yoga class. Knowing that a contemporary yoga class focuses almost exclusively on the physical, this should not come as a surprise. Many yoga classes have now become a competitive environment, often pushing too hard for superficial results rather than cultivating a compassionate inner voice. This is not just a missed opportunity, but dangerous. Yoga asana was designed around the Eastern subtle body system, not the Western musculoskeletal system. As Yoga has been popularized in the west, the Western anatomical approach has pushed out the original logic of the subtle body that underlies the entire structure of this ancient practice. This is like removing all the electrical wiring, plumbing, and internal systems of a complicated building and wondering why it breaks down. If you don’t want your body to break, you MUST study the subtle body. It is the foundation of yoga as a healing and therapeutic practice.

每年在瑜伽课中受伤而送急症室的案例越来越多。了解了当代瑜伽课程几乎只专注于身体层面,那这也不算是意料之外了。很多瑜伽课现在变成了一个竞技场,经常过分地追求表面结果,而不是培养慈悲的内在声音。这不仅仅只是错失了一个机会,而且会很危险。瑜伽体式是围绕东方的精微身系统,而不是西方的肌肉骨骼系统所设计的。随着瑜伽在西方的流行,西方解剖学把最初构成这个古老练习整体结构的精微身逻辑排挤在外。这就好像是移除了所有的电线,管道,和一个复杂建筑的内部系统,而且还在疑惑为何它崩塌。如果你不想让你的身体崩溃,你必须学习精微身。这是瑜伽作为康复和理疗练习的基石。

When we consciously work with the subtle body, we are able to access the place where our subtlest energies ride directly alongside our thoughts and emotions. This allows us to heal ourselves in a dramatic way. To change the mind through the use of the body is the miracle of yoga. Yoga is designed to liberate the mind from pain, and allow us to become completely free. If you put the extra effort of focusing on the subtle body in your yoga class, you will emerge transformed from the outside in and the inside out.

当我们有意识地与精微身协作时,我们能够到达这个地方,在那里我们最精微的能量骑乘在我们的念头和情绪上。这能够让我们颠覆性地疗愈自己。通过使用身体来改变意识是瑜伽的奇迹。设计瑜伽是为了把意识从痛苦中解放出来,并且让我们获得全然自由。如果你在瑜伽课中格外努力地专注于精微身,你会由外而内地发生转变。

Many aspects of subtle anatomy

精微身解剖学的许多方面

In the following weeks we will share with you many different ways to approach the subtle body, study its anatomy, and start using it in your daily practice. We will take the time to introduce you to the classic texts that mention the subtle body, as well as give you details on the shape and function of its various parts. We also will give you some meditations and practices that you can do to get more familiar with your own subtle body, as well as ways to work with it in asana or other movement based practices. We hope to kindle in you a fire of keen interest in this generally overlooked, yet ultimately central, aspect of the practice of yoga.

在接下来的几周,我们会与你分享接近精微身的许多不同方式,学习它的解剖学,并运用到你的日常练习中。我们会花时间向你介绍提及精微身的经典文本,并且告知关于它许多组成部分的形状和功能的细节。我们还会给予一些冥想和练习,让你们可以更熟悉自己的精微身,并且会介绍在体式和其他以动作为基础的练习中如何与精微身协作的方法。我们希望能够点燃你们对这个被普遍忽视,却是瑜伽练习终极核心方面的强烈兴趣。

2017-08-07T01:52:22+00:00

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