At this point we’ve made it through the first limb of yoga, the yamas, or the internal ethics of yoga. Now we move onto the second (there are eight total) limb of yoga, the niyamas. Niyamas are how we are externally; how we take care of our body, heart-mind and immediate surroundings. Sauca, the first niyama, is the most external.
Sauca means cleanliness and purity. Both outer and inner cleanliness are necessary to maintain our health and sanity. Are you aware of what the affects are of what you put in your body? The music you listen to? The news you read? Everything you consume influences the purity of your life and either takes you closer to or father away from your truest self.
Constant clutter on the outside can indicate clutter on the inside. Clutter is not only physical ‘stuff’ but also external opinions and judgements. This day and age we are constantly bombarded with information that aims to clutter our minds and sway our opinions. The more we are grounded in our virtues and values, the less room there will be for external clutter to creep in. The end result of practicing sauca is a heart-mind that is happy, focused, undistracted by sensory perceptions, and connected to its divine, inner power.
Comment below and share your experiences with sauca and how you practice ‘staying clean.’ Have you ever ‘come clean’ and admitted something you were bottling up? How did that feel?
“Cleanliness is indeed next to godliness.”John Wesley
Sauca Exercises: Clear out a food from your diet (start with the pantry!) that you know does not sit well with your body. Clear out a word from your vocabulary that you no longer wish to use. Choose not to talk about other people (unless it’s in a positive way).
Sauca Mantra: I keep my body, heart-mind, and surroundings clean and uncluttered.
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Niyamas: Observances of Yoga | Chapter 1: SaucaTweet