SADHANA (Daily Practice)
A daily practice, also known as sadhana, consists of silent reflection and meditation, an exercise routine, and a healthy diet - all of this will nurture your growth and balance. Consider waking up earlier to set your intention for the day. Warm your body with yoga or walking or other physical exercise. Think about what you are putting into your body, including your thoughts, and make a conscious decision each time - choose you - choose healthier options. Surrounding yourself with supportive, loving relationships will enhance your daily experience. Smile!
Sadhana is the daily practice of waking up in the amrit vela time (2 1/2 hours before the sun rises also known as the ambrosial hours) to meditate and be engaged in mantra. In the words of Yogi Bhajan, "Sadhana is nothing but where a disciplined one, the love, talks to one’s own soul. It is nothing but where one cleans his own mind."
So, why Do Sadhana - what's the purpose? Sadhana is when/where one prepares for the day...to become kind and compassionate for everyone, including "enemies" or those we might find some conflict with. When we rise and get up early in the morning, we do our sadhana so that we can match up with the day - so we can match up with absolute reality. Face the reality - with reality. Not facing the reality with laziness and slowness. If you do so, you will never be successful and then you are your own enemy. You can’t make it. And that’s why sadhana is an act."
"Everybody has God’s light and it must be lit by a person’s own discipline. And the glass to keep it lit and shining should be kept by the person’s own courage, strength and grit. I believe it. I believe this is the love. I believe everybody has the chance to love one’s soul and every soul has the right to shine and every shine has to bring light and brightness, beauty and bountifulness to all, generation after generation... "You love your children? You do. They are beautiful. Isn’t that innocent soul in you also your life child? Have you kissed the soul? Have you hugged the soul? Have you communicated with the soul in the morning at the ambrosial hours when there is absolutely no disturbance? Sadhana is nothing but where a disciplined one, the love, talks to one’s own soul. is nothing but where one cleans his own mind. Sadhana is nothing but where one prepares for the day to become kind and compassionate for everyone, including the enemies...
"When you stand, take a stand, and stand tall. Walk tall and stand by the strength of your soul. Not the strength of your intellect, intelligence and your cowardice. If you want to speak to anybody, to deal with anything, to have any relationship, just have relationship by the strength of your soul. Otherwise you will miss the goal of life." - Yogi Bhajan
How do I start and keep up a Sadhana?
Start with what you think you can handle. First, try getting up one hour earlier than usual; this may mean going to bed earlier. It is good to start with some simple yoga exercises to stretch your body and get it going, and then practice a meditation. Do this routine until you are able to do it easily, daily for a month or 40 days. Then slowly expand the length of time.
For some people, all they can manage of a morning sadhana is one 11-minute meditation, but doing that is better than doing nothing! It is important to understand that yoga and meditation bring light energy into the body, and over time, this replaces the need for that extra hour or two of sleep in a normal routine (not counting illness and late nights!!). It helps a great deal to have a sadhana partner or community.
Yogi Bhajan used to say that half of sadhana is showing up, so if your local Sikh community has an organized sadhana routine, participate in it whenever you can get there, even if it’s only for the last few minutes. Many of us find that the more we do sadhana, the more we find we need it and the support it gives us. In other words, it grows on you.