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Essential hOMecoming: Yoga & the Art of Sound, Breath & Body

  • yoga hOMe sligo 7 John F Kennedy Parade Sligo, County Sligo, F91 WK59 Ireland (map)
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Join us as we blend restorative yoga, pranayama and the yoga of sound (chanting) in this essential hOMecoming workshop.

Because this is a somewhat unusual combination of elements for many people who may be newer to yoga, I have included below a description of the various aspects of this workshop--feel free to read but the key information is that this is a whole body mind heart experience designed to invite you hOMe to yourself through a blend of sacred music, gentle movement, inner listening and outer stillness. It is suitable for all levels and absolute beginners. It is not a course, so you may come to one workshop or come each month as you wish. 

Sundays 6.30-9.00pm

30euro per workshop or buy a 2, 3 or 4 workshop pass which are applicable to ALL YHS workshops at yoga hOMe sligo (excluding DIY Yoga)

2 wksp pass 50euro | 3 wksp pass 70euro | 4 wksp pass 95

* Please note our new policy: Workshops will not go ahead if no one has booked in by 8pm the day before the scheduled event. If you have not already booked in for a workshop, and it is day-of, it's always wise to check the LIVE schedule on website rather than mindbody app. If you are unsure, call/text 087 1740357


What is Sound Yoga?

"The sound of OM travels forward and back through the mouth along the entire palate, moving through the complete spectrum of possibilities for vowel sounds. As it flows from the lips, back through the mouth, it travels behind the soft palate, where the vibration naturally ends at the upper back vault of the sinuses under the pituitary gland. The ending point of the vibration is called the "bindu", which is translated as "droplet." The tapering of the "mmm" sound is called the "anusvara", which means "the extension of flow". In Indian thought, the bindu of the anusvara is considered to be a source of a delightful nectar that when stimulated can drip down and saturate all our perceptions and experience."

~ Richard Freeman from "The Mirror of Yoga: Awakening the Intelligence of Body and Mind"

When we chant, we effectively soak in a healing sound bath of our own creation. OM (AUM) is said to be the sound of the Universe, the sound of Life itself. Yoga means union and when we bring our breath and body together in sacred sound, we open our body mind hearts to a deeper awareness of the web of interconnection that weaves our lives together; we can step into a moment of vibratory union with the aliveness of all things.

In this workshop, you will learn about the practice and the myths of nada yoga, or the yoga of sacred sound. The nada, or internal sacred sound is said to be the sound of the awakened heart and is akin to our own personal om as it resonates with the rest of Being. We connect to this internal sacred vibration by first listening deeply to the outer stories, sounds and harmonies of the mantras and allowing this refinement of our attention and intention to lead us into a deep internal listening and awakening.

We very naturally make the sound "mmmm" when we taste something delicious or find ourselves in a state of agreement with another. To be immersed in this sound from the inside out, as we are when we chant "OM" and other yogic mantras that feature the "mmm" sound, we become the bell calling ourselves home, we become the sound that soothes, we become that which we seek as we come into the state of yoga. Come join us. Come hOMe.

What is Pranayama?

This is a huge topic so I'll keep it as simple as possible: Prana is the Life Force, the energy that flows through all things and is most accessible to us through the awareness of the breath. When we work in particular ways to deepen this awareness, by making different "shapes" with the breath, (eg lengthening, shortening, holding, pumping)  much as we do with the body in yoga asana, so that we gradually come into a more engaged and empowering relationship with Prana. It's not about "controlling" the breath, rather it's about working with the breath in a multiplicity of ways to strengthen OUR awareness, capacity and skillfulness, to open pathways in our bodymindheart for the Prana to more freely move through us, bringing nourishment and power as it enters and cleansing and releasing toxins (physiological, mental of emotional) as it leaves. As my teacher Katchie Ananda put it, in Pranayama we liberate the potency of the breath from the dysfunctional patterns that have accumulated in our bodymindheart.


What is Restorative Yoga?

“We have an ancient body subjected to a modern problem: Living with chronic stress … The antidote to stress is relaxation. To relax is to rest deeply. This rest is different from sleep. Different states of sleep include periods of dreaming, which increase muscular tension as well as other physiological signs of muscular tension. Relaxation is a state in which there is no movement, no effort and the brain is quiet”
~ Judith Hanson Lasater Ph.D, P.T. yoga teacher and author of Relax and Renew: Restful Yoga for Stressful Times

Restorative yoga is an essential component of balance in a world increasingly out of balance. Modern living overemphasizes activity and rest is distinctly under-valued. Generally, we swing from over stimulation to collapse and don’t find a place of sustainable rest and relaxation in between. However, without sufficient qualitative rest, our whole system—body mind heart—becomes chronically stressed and this seriously diminishes our natural capacity for well-being.
Restorative yoga is a powerful antidote to stress. It’s not simply a slowed down version of a typical yoga flow class. It’s not just lying around on bolsters and pillows, a passive practice for people who can’t do “real yoga.” Restorative yoga has a fundamentally different premise; that deep relaxation comes from a deliberate and conscious withdrawal from outer activity in order to allow the body's confused and depleted energies to naturally rebalance and so rebound from the effects of chronic stress. It’s not so much a passive process as a practice of receptivity to the potent healing force innate in our system.

But I don't think I suffer from "Chronic Stress"

Whether you are aware of it or not, you are most likely affected to some degree by stress—it’s not just a term to be reserved for those whose particular job seems obviously stressful. Chronic stress is an epidemic in our hyper-linked fast-paced modern world. We are now, all of us from teenagers to seniors, swimming in a cultural soup of “more, bigger, better, faster Faster FASTER” that is garnished with a hefty dollop of criminal, political, and environmental “danger Danger DANGER.” We are constantly on alert--essentially, this sense of hyper alertness is stress. (click here to learn more about what stress is, how it works and what its effects are)
Many of us are so chronically stressed, so habituated to its effects, we think that exhaustion, headaches, anxiety, and various other impingements on health and happiness are just part and parcel of a busy life with work, kids, relationships etc. This is simply not true. It is possible to reduce the stress we feel in our lives, and the extent to which you feel you have not got time to relax, is the extent to which you are in need of rest, release and deep relaxation.
How does restorative yoga work?
Mindful restorative yoga taps into the body’s natural ability to restore balance. Restorative yoga’s process of deliberate relaxation works by using various props and supports to arrange the body in various poses that alternately stimulate and then relax the body to restore balance. Some poses have overall physiological benefits, while others target specific areas such as the heart, lungs, and other internal organs. Because the poses are entirely supported, the practitioner does not need to engage muscularly and so not only can remain in these beneficial postures longer, but also can move attention from the muscular skeletal level, to the level of breath awareness, and working consciously with the breath is a deeply potent way into accessing the bodies relaxation response.