Subtle yoga anatomy refers to the energetic and subtle aspects of the human body, beyond the physical anatomy. It includes the energy channels (nadis), energy centers (chakras), and the flow of energy (prana) in the body. Understanding subtle yoga anatomy can help practitioners to better understand the connection between the body, mind, and spirit and to deepen their yoga practice.
Here is a brief overview of the key elements of subtle yoga anatomy:
Nadis: The nadis are energy channels in the body, which are said to carry prana (life force energy) throughout the body. The three main nadis are the sushumna, ida, and pingala. The sushumna runs along the spinal column, while the ida and pingala spiral around it. These channels intersect at seven energy centers or chakras.
Chakras: The chakras are energy centers that are located along the sushumna nadi. There are seven chakras in total, each corresponding to different areas of the body and aspects of consciousness. These are the root chakra (muladhara), sacral chakra (svadhisthana), solar plexus chakra (manipura), heart chakra (anahata), throat chakra (vishuddha), third eye chakra (ajna), and crown chakra (sahasrara).
Prana: Prana is the life force energy that flows through the nadis and chakras. It is said to be responsible for the functioning of the body, mind, and spirit. By practicing yoga and pranayama, practitioners can learn to control and direct the flow of prana, which can help to balance the energy centers in the body and promote overall health and wellbeing.