Have you ever been in a relationship that you love but you feel pressured to stay silent in the presence of your partner? If so, you’ve experienced what Dr. Phil often calls the “mouna” — a vow of silence that doesn’t necessarily have to be part of a religious ceremony. Mouna is friendship-killing frustration in a relationship where you’re not allowed to talk.
I take my vows seriously. I keep my word. I’m not a good person. I want to help others. I’m a bad person. So why do these words keep me up at night? They keep me up at night because I know I have a problem. I’m a bad person who takes her vows too seriously, and I want to fix that. I want to become a good person.
A vow of silence is a vow of not speaking. You can vow a vow of silence to honor God, to honor yourself, to honor your parents, to honor your loved ones or to honor yourself. It’s not a vow of not speaking, but a vow of not speaking today, tomorrow or for a specific period of time.As a yoga teacher, I have often seen students experience what we call an emotional release during yoga classes. Some people find that certain attitudes cause them to burst into tears on certain days or fill them with intense frustration over something that has nothing to do with their practice.
Meditation is another way to open up to emotions. When you can let thoughts flow effortlessly, you can concentrate better, even in times of emotional turmoil. This free 30-day meditation will help you achieve a calmer state of mind so you’re ready to be emotional!
It is common knowledge that yoga is not just a physical practice, but what few people know is that in addition to its core and calming effects, yoga can also be an intense emotional journey, and this aspect of the practice can often overwhelm people.
Are you curious? Here are 3 important things science says about why you feel emotions when you do yoga.
1. We are hungry for connection and contact.
In our ultra-modern world, we are often physically distant from one another, deprived of contact and connection by overflowing schedules, technology that connects us to another reality, and individualistic social norms. Some of us can go days without touching another, which can lead to what is called sensory starvation.
Contact with other living beings, especially skin-to-skin contact, releases so-called happiness substances in the brain, such as serotonin and dopamine. That’s why it’s so nice to hug a loved one, or why you like it when someone plays with your hair.
If we are deprived of contact for too long, we can feel exhausted, empty, sad and isolated. When a teacher touches you during the exercise, it can trigger a stream of happiness-enhancing chemicals and a sudden realization of how long it has been since you were touched. This can lead to conflicting and overwhelming feelings.
Similarly, the social and non-judgmental atmosphere of a yoga class can give you the opportunity to simply connect with others without words or social anxiety. This sense of deep, primal connection to others can also be overwhelming and lead to a re-evaluation of our relationship with those around us.
2. The physical focus helps bring your subconscious emotions to the surface.
Although yoga can be a physically intense activity, the postures and asanas can bring your brain into a state of focus and neutrality. This will help you deal with all the things that are bothering you subconsciously, but that you couldn’t or didn’t want to deal with directly.
You’re in a yoga class: Breathing and concentration helped you relax and quiet your mind, so that momentary stress and anxiety disappeared. Your current worries fade into the background and the surface of your brain fades to focus on the physical tasks of practice.
Your deep mind now has the ability to process things that you previously kept below the surface of your immediate consciousness, whether it’s stress, intense anger or sadness, or perhaps a confusing mix of many things.
In an interview with Yoga Journal, Joan Shivarpita Harrigan (physician and psychologist) said: Whenever you work with the body, you are also working with the mind and the energy system that is the bridge between the body and the mind.
Yoga gives your mind a chance to process the feelings we bury and push aside. This leads to the confusion you feel when you are suddenly overwhelmed by an emotion on the carpet, and it can take from a few moments to a few days to find your way within and consciously identify the original source of the emotion.
But all this introspection is worth it. It can lead to the discovery of a problem you have long wanted to solve.
3. Your body physically holds emotional tension and pain.
For centuries, some cultures have believed that the mind, body, and what may be called the soul are inextricably linked, and that a disease of one cannot be treated without addressing all three.
According to this holistic view of healing, our bodies remember and store everything that has happened to us in life, from trauma to intense joy. When we physically revitalize the parts of the body that hold these emotions, as can happen in yoga classes, we also release these feelings.
For example, stretching and opening the hips and back can relieve stress and anxiety in many people, which is good if those anxieties are mild. Physical tension leaves the body and is gently processed through breathing and concentration. However, if the fear is very strong, it can overwhelm the person doing the posing, and deeper inner focus and healing is then required.
By physically opening the muscles, tissues and organs of the body, yoga can bring deeply hidden fears and sorrows to the surface. When we recognize the cause of these feelings, we can eliminate them mentally, emotionally and physically.
I encourage anyone who has experienced emotional release through the practice of yoga to consider it a gift and try not to be afraid of what it has to offer. It may not feel like it at the time, but thinking about the postures that make you cry and the postures that make you laugh unexpectedly is a real opportunity to explore what you are storing in a particular part of your body.
You can even try to look deeper and explore the deep root of these yoga-induced feelings. Take your time and look: Maybe your body is telling you something important about what your mind needs.Mouna, a Sanskrit word meaning silence, is a religious vow the is taken by Hindu women in India during the month of monsoon. Mouna is also like a time out from the everyday hustle and bustle, a time to reflect and take a step back. But this silent introspection can be taken too far and lead to a lonely existence, which is why it is important to know when to end your silence, how to end it, and what to do when you want to break your vow.. Read more about what happens if you break a vow of silence and let us know what you think.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you take a vow of silence?
A vow of silence is a promise to refrain from speaking.
What does a vow of silence entail?
A vow of silence is a promise to refrain from speaking for a certain period of time.
What is it like to take a vow of silence?
It is a very difficult thing to do. It is not easy to be silent for a long time, and it can be very frustrating.
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