> Give yourself a slow and loving full-body
massage before taking a shower. Use pitta
massage oil, coconut oil, or sunflower oil.
Pitta season can create conditions for i
flammation and over-activity of certain
metabolic processes and secretions. Massage helps things move through the body
and can be soothing.
> A rosewater mister is a wonderful refresher
for the face and body, as are a cooling
milk and mint bath, or milk with rose petals. Make a sandalwood face mask with
rose water. Have fresh aloe nearby for any
pitta skin conditions that may arise, from
sunburns to rashes.
> Summer essential oils / scents include: sandalwood, rose, lavender, jasmine, lotus,
gardenia, khus, and vetiver.
> While we may choose to wear the colors
of the Sun to honor and enhance the energy
of this time of year, when we notice the fire
increasing beyond a level that is comfortable
and we need to cool the body, we are served
by cooling hues of white, blue, or green. No
matter what color we wear, light textures of
cotton, linen, or silk allow us to move easily
throughout the season.
ENERGETIC VINYASA FOR
THE SUMMER SEASON
Kala—Continue to synch with the Sun, gradually getting up earlier before the sunrise; this
is the peak time of growth, so synch your
movements with that waxing light. Offer yoga
outdoors in the shade so you can take in the
fresh prana of the elements at this time.
Desa—If you are already experiencing the
heat of Summer, be aware of the effects of
Summer on excessive fire in your body. Begin
to wear more cooling colors and white to stay
in the bhava of Summer.
Bhava—Bask in the Summer joy but be
aware that the Sun has reached its peak in
the Northern Hemisphere and has begun its
journey of waning for the next six months.
The relaxing, easygoing quality of a more lunar, fluid nature can be integrated into the
expansiveness of summer qualities—
celebratory, sukha (intrinsic happiness), loving appreciation of the best of life, and the ease you
feel in your body.
Dosha—The Summer Season is time when
those who did not cleanse fully in the Spring
are most vulnerable to experiencing accumulated ama, or toxins, which can burn “
impurely” during the excess heat-related imbalances of Summer. Summer yoga practices and
a proper clean-food sadhana can, with some
mild cleanses, help you feel more balanced
and clear in the prana flow of your body,
which is the most open during the Summer.
Yoga Practice— This is the best time of the
year for Sringara Rasa, practices to nourish
the water element to balance excess heat as
well as to tend the fires of love and appreciation. Cultivate lunar or Shanti Rasa practices as well if you are feeling the blissful lazy
quality of a natural shift into ida nadi or the
lunar current. This is the best season for flexibility and ease of range of motion, which
can be enjoyed in fluid backbends, namas-kars to increase flow and agility, and Sringara Rasa circular movements for increasing
the love flow.
> Enjoy stimulating cooling practices at this
time: sitali (hissing breath), slow and deep
ujjayi pranayama, and nadi shodhana.
> Asanas that remove excess heat from the
body, such as forward bends and mild
backbends, are most suitable. Avoid asanas
that build heat. Do cooling pranayama
such as sheetali, sheetkari, chandra bed-hana, and nadi shodhana.
> Enjoy solar mantras at sunrise such as the
Gayatri mantra or the simple Om Suraye
Namaha to align with solar energy.
Allow the Summer Solstice to penetrate your
awareness of how extraordinary our journey
on Spaceship Earth as we begin the second
half of the year.
One of three hundred billion stars
of the Milky Way galaxy, the Sun
each and every second transforms
four million tons of itself into light
and emits energy that we receive
some ninety-three million miles
away—a continuous process of
Through the magnificence of solar
power, and the process of photosynthesis, we are given the air to
breathe, food to eat, and water to
drink. Sunlight is indeed the divine
source of prana. We are literally
made of the Sun, our great star.
We live in an abundance of energy.
The Sun’s radiant energy produces
six thousand times the amount of
energy used by all human beings
worldwide, and it would take only
0.001 percent of its energy to
power all of the world's current
energy needs for a day. One hour
of the Sun is enough for a whole
year of power.
Consider solar power to balance
your carbon footprint – natural
light, solar lamps, putting solar-panels on your house, using solar
lamps or cookers or supporting
The Summer Season is time when those who
did not cleanse fully in the Spring are most
vulnerable to experiencing accumulated ama…
Shiva Rea is a shaktidasi — servant of life-force.
She is the dedicated founder of Prana Flow—
Energetic Vinyasa and Samudra Global School for Living
Yoga offering pilgrimage and Yogadventure retreats,
teacher trainings, and online programs in collaboration
with teachers, artists, and activists around the world.
Article adapted from Tending the Heart Fire: Living in
the Flow with the Pulse of Life byhiva Rea. Copyright
2014 by Shiva Rea. Published by Sounds True in