The Subtle Body

If you’ve studied yoga with me you will know that my main focus is on the subtle body… but what is that exactly and why does it matter?

Many people are not aware that our physical body is not the only body that we have. In yoga we describe other layers in the body as sheaths called koshas. 

The first sheath is annamaya kosha known as the gross body, and refers to the physical body. When you first start practicing yoga, this is where the focus tends to go. You spend time to learn the asanas (physical postures) to gain a strong and flexible body.

As you become more familiar with your asana practice you may have the desire to deepen your practice and to explore the subtle body. This consists of these three sheaths:

  • Pranamaya kosha the energetic body
  • Manomaya kosha the mental and emotional body, and
  • Vijnanamaya kosha the wisdom body

Chakra yoga, Yin yoga, and Sound yoga are different ways to work with these deeper layers of the body.

Working on the subtle body eventually leads to the last sheath anandamaya kosha, the bliss body, known as the causal body.  This is a deep meditative state where yoga (union) is found – union to your higher self, universal consciousness, or the source of life.

Unfortunately you can’t experience this deep meditative state by sheer will, it’s something that happens to you when all the layers of the body are prepared and ready to receive.

You can think of the subtle body as being a bridge between the physical body to the bliss body.

If you’re interested in deepening your practice to find what Yoga really is then I recommend that you find a practice that explores the subtle body.

Check out my online classes, workshops and courses and try it out for yourself. Once you find a practice that resonates with you, keep practicing with a sense of exploration. You might be surprised by what you discover about yourself and the universe.

Share This Post

Share on facebook
Share on linkedin
Share on twitter
Share on email
Share on facebook

More To Explore

In the Pursuit of Pleasure

The second major energy wheel in the body is the sacral chakra known as Svadhisthana. The flavour here is quite different from the first chakra Muladhara, which is focused on security, stability, and acquiring possessions. By contrast, the focus at Svadhisthana is the pursuit of pleasure and fun.

The Play of Power Dynamics

Manipura relates to the fire element that lives in the solar plexus. When this chakra is well balanced this person will have good self-esteem and plenty of energy to get things done.

Balancing the Heart

The heart chakra is the centre of connection and compassion. It’s from the heart space that we relate to other sentient beings, to nature and to the cosmos. It represents our innate sense of compassion and unconditional love.

Are you interested in learning more?

Leave your email and get my newsletter

Barbara Courtille