Yoga Eka Hasta Bhujasana Pose

Autogenic component

On Day Four another autogenic component is added: the experience of warmth. Take up a comfortable reclining position, which will feel restful after the vigorous yoga. This should, if possible, be in a ‘safe’ place away from interruptions and telephones. You really need 20 minutes of peace in order to work on this autogenic system.

a. Start concentrating on your right arm, saying to yourself, ‘My arm feels warm – my arm feels warm. You cannot control or force this feeling. It has to come as part and parcel of a feeling of relaxation. Again the controlled pendulum breathing helps. It may not be possible to experience this warm feeling to start with, in which case after spending a few minutes on it without effect abandon the process until the next day, going back to Day One autogenics. Some students of autogenics find that this experience of warmth needs several days’ practice before it comes. Once it occurs leave it and concentrate on the left arm, again expecting the warmth feeling. A passive receptive state, with well-synchronized pendulum breathing and the autogenic mantra, usually works in the end.

b. Once warmth can be experienced in this way in the upper limbs, extend it to the neck and face. About 20 minutes, twice daily, is an adequate warmth experience training session.

Revision and synchronization

The idea today is to put together a relaxation programme. This will not be your final programme -that comes later as a few more elements are built into the system. The aim at this half-way stage is to use your half hour (hopefully twice a day) in an economical but fruitful way by making the techniques automatic and concentrating on making the difficult parts less difficult. As you learn the various techniques you will find that you enjoy, and are more preoccupied with, the already pleasurable and positive parts of the programme. It is through these positive feelings that success in relaxation is ultimately attained.

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