The Art of Sadhana
Sadhana is a daily spiritual practice that is cultivated over time. It can also be translated as “realization” for within the concept is the understanding that this as an art of true devotion to the path of self-realization that is known as yoga.
Sadhana represents a disciplined surrendering of the ego. Getting into daily practice is part of the yogi’s journey and the beginnings of a daily devotional Sadhana practise. The term sadhana comes from the Sanskrit root, “sadha” which means “practise” and “sadhu”, meaning (amongst many things) “go straight to a goal” or, “incarnation of Siva (Adiyogi)” – those who “practise” and make “the practise” their path.
Anything that is practiced with awareness, discipline and intention of spiritual growth can be thought of as Sadhana, but as a true Sadhana is practiced alone, its purpose is for the sake of the practitioner. Sadhana can be asana, meditation, prayer, chanting… it can be one thing for a while and then change or build upon to expand your daily practice. Sadhana can be fasting, kriyas, pranayama; it can be daily svadhyaya (self-inquiry), the study of yogic or spiritual scriptures, or any form / combination of practices that, through devotion, commitment and repetition becomes a yogi’s Sadhana.
Sadhana means daily spiritual practice – a process of forging a ritual connection with God / Source / Universal Energy / Soul. Daily practice is the foundation of all spiritual journey. Sadhana is how you wish to express and participate daily in this journey – it encourages the sadhaka (practitioner) to use self-discipline in order to achieve their full potential, achieve power over the ego and maintain and continuously deepen the yogi’s connection with universal oneness and true nature.
When westerners hear the word “discipline” we often don’t like it as it reminds us of years of institutional learning within the modern society school programs and may trigger internal resistance. However, we can heal this by coming to understand what the word really means.
“Discipline” is not a term meant to create forceful action in one’s life. However, Western consciousness typically defines “the disciple” as being either “a follower of Jesus” or someone who is trained to follow “strict rules” or “codes of conduct”. This is not what is truly meant by discipline or being a disciple in yoga. A disciple is one who learns – a student. Yogis are perpetual students of life as every guru has a guru; therefore, yoga exists as a golden chain of souls simultaneously embodying consciousness of student and teacher.
Discipline is the art of embodying these teachings. It could be said that Yoga gives us the science and discipline is the art of bringing the science into our lives. Like any art, it is one that you acquire through training, guidance and practice and the purpose of it is to enhance one’s life – not to fit into someone else’s mold or societal norms. It is the art of committing to one’s highest Self and it takes practice.
Sadhana teaches the Sadhaka that with each daily practice, the yogi realigns themselves with their true inner nature and progressively evolves to align with the ultimate expression of consciousness – Samadhi.
Please feel free to share your experience in cultivating your own sadhana in the comments!
love + blessings 🤍🖤
Sadhana means daily spiritual practice – a process of forging a ritual connection with God / Source / Universal Energy.