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What is the Subtle Body? – Monica Nicoletti

Today we want to delve into the most magical part of Yoga, looking at the energy level on which, for thousands of years, its foundations have been based.

The spiritual traditions of yoga arose in the Indian subcontinent thousands of years ago, were transmitted orally until the Middle Ages and were eventually recorded in very important texts.

The Subtle Body

The Subtle Body, i.e. the energy body that envelops and interpenetrates the physical body, is made of Prana, i.e. life energy or life force, and has its own form and physiology.

To better understand what we are talking about, imagine your physical body contained within another, somewhat larger, invisible body that is made of pure energy and is expandable.

It is composed of organs that absorb, transform and transmit this energy; it is distributed within the system through the various yoga practices.

For example, pranayama is an art of assimilating life energy through the use of breathing techniques, and is related to the Prana energy level and the physical body.

Throughout the ages, pranayama has been studied and practised based on direct and intuitive knowledge of the Subtle Body, with the aim of better channelling energy within the body, harmonising the various levels of body and mind, and concentrating in the energy centres of the body all the forces that will affect personality, level of consciousness and cellular functions.

The Organs of the Subtle Body

The Organs that make up the Subtle Body communicate and interact with each other as a true system and are as follows:

The Nadis

subtle channels through which energy flows.

In Sanskrit (ancient Indian language), nadi indicates a riverbed containing water or the flow channel of a river.

The Chakra

energy centres of the body.

In Sanskrit, chakra means ‘wheel, vortex’.

The Prana Vayu

forms of energy that govern various areas of the body and different physical and subtle activities.

In Sanskrit, vayu means ‘winds’ or ‘vital breaths’.

The Kundalini

represents one’s potential energy.

In Sanskrit, kundala means ‘twisted’ and indicates the vast potential power contained within a spiral.

We will explore these invisible but perceptible organs of the Subtle Body one by one, with the idea that everything is connected and interconnected to a Great Net of which we are a part and of which everything is a part.

It is an energy network connected to the Universe, because it is generated by it.

And everything that happens within this network involves us deeply.


Monica Nicoletti

Follow Monica on her Facebook page Monica Yoga Libera Tutti

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