We are thrilled to introduce Sakura, an extraordinary yoga practitioner from the enchanting island of Ischia, Italy. With deep gratitude, we bring you a captivating mini-series featuring her insightful writings on the transformative power of yoga.
For several years I have practiced martial arts and when someone asked me "What is the best part of training for you?" my answer has always been "The beginning and the end", simply because they corresponded to the moment of greeting (Rei). In fact, the greeting at the beginning and at the end of a martial arts lesson has something magical in it... at least for me.
There is a sense of deep respect in the air towards the Sensei, the opponent in a fight or the partner during training. Then, reluctantly, I had to abandon martial arts for health reasons, but I carry with me a wonderful memory of my Sensei and my training partners, but above all a deep respect for the martial disciplines that teach so much.
Then, almost by magic, or due to the desire not to give up, my path (actually very bumpy at the time) crossed paths with yoga. So, with all the determination that judo had taught me, I decided to get back into the game and guess what… I came across another greeting: “Namaste”.
It didn't seem real to me! I had found all of myself in that single word and later I made that word the beginning of a new path and a new life. But how can a single word have such deep meaning and the power to transform a person's life?
The word Namaste (from Sanskrit) means "I bow to you" but it has an even deeper meaning... in fact it is a way of saying that we bow to the soul of the person we are facing. Each of us has something divine in us, so it's a way to recognize the sacredness that is in each of us.
Also, the root of this word, “namas” means “nothing is mine”, therefore this word is able to strip us of our ego, showing our humility towards the person in front of us. Hindus use the word Namaste by bringing their hands together on their chest (Anjali Mudra) to greet a person, on their forehead to greet a guru and above their head to honor a deity or simply as a form of thanksgiving.
So, every time you practice yoga or simply say hello and thank someone always remember the power of the meaning of the word Namaste…. believe me, it can change your life!