The 5 Bodies: Your Roadmap For Great Transformation

In Yoga Literature, we find the idea that we have not one but five bodies or koshas: annamaya, pranamaya, manomaya, vijnanamaya, and anandamaya. Koshas are energy layers that surround our core essence or soul. These layers are nested within each other, like a Russian doll, and they vary in frequency and vibration. They can be used to guide you towards great transformation and spiritual development. If you use the koshas as a roadmap, you can achieve greater inner awareness and wholeness as your body, mind, and spirit become more and more connected.

Our goal must be to balance the koshas (bodies) and therefore not identify ourselves with only one aspect of them.

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This approach is one of the oldest conceptualizations of how energy is manifested in human beings. It was first described in a Vedic text dated from the sixth century before Christ and it can certainly impart wisdom and inspiration on our journey towards greater well-being. Our goal must be to balance the koshas (bodies) and therefore not identify ourselves with only one aspect of them. For instance, we are not meant to pay only attention to our emotions and neglect our physical and mental bodies. To experience well-being, we must act coherently and create resonance across all our energy bodies.

Annamaya, or Physical Body

This is our densest body. It is made of food, flesh, and bone. Imbalances in other bodies are manifested here and what you do with your body also has an impact on other subtler layers. Paying attention to what we eat, how much we exercise and sleep, and the extent to which we minimize environmental toxins are some of the aspects that can directly affect this kosha.

Pranamaya, or Breath Body

We are used to taking the breath for granted but the breath plays a huge role in how the life force or prana circulates throughout our physical body. It has the power of giving us vitality. To pay attention to this kosha is to pay attention to our breath and the health of our circulatory, lymphatic, and nervous systems. We are not meant to hold tension in the physical body for great periods of time as that blocks the flow of energy. When prana is not flowing right, we tend to be restless, stressed, and anxious. Relaxation techniques are paramount.

Manomaya, or Mental Body

This kosha comprises not only our thoughts, but also our emotions, and behavioral tendencies. It holds our perception of the world, of others, and of ourselves. Some say it houses our Ego. It works as a messenger between our inner and outer worlds. When this body is out of balance, we can feel disconnected from what lies beyond it or we may be overwhelmed with the flow of information that’s occurring.

Vijnanamaya, or Wisdom Body

The Wisdom or Astral body is the energy layer where our intuition resides. This kosha allows us to see reality as it is and have access to a greater sense of balance. It deals with knowledge from a higher perspective and it requires us to be the observer of our own experiences. It’s where we overcome the Ego by committing ourselves to accept both our Light and our Shadow.

Anandamaya, or Bliss Body

This kosha is the subtlest one and it houses our pure Consciousness. It’s where we feel one with the universe and realize our True or Higher Self. To develop and nurture this body, we need to elevate our consciousness and be committed to our spiritual practices. In today’s fast-paced and inverted world is hard to achieve this stage of great well-being but it is possible to have glimpses or flashes of such blissful experience if you remain committed to doing the necessary inner work.

Concluding Thoughts

Whether you subscribe to more eastern approaches to human life, or not, I believe this 5 koshas system can be helpful in the sense that it provides us with a roadmap to direct our journey towards greater happiness and well-being. We often want to improve our well-being and feel more whole as a person but there are so many aspects that influence such a process that we can feel overwhelmed or even confused about where to start making a change. Approaching our well-being through the five koshas or bodies can make our journey less complex and more feasible.

The 4 Jewels of Well-being

According to neuroscientist Richard Davidson, well-being is a skill, and it can be developed with practice. It’s like learning to walk or playing the piano. The more you practice it, the more you strengthen the neuronal circuits associated with well-being, and the better you get at it. These neuronal circuits are plastic and thus can be expanded and trained. They are awareness, connection, insight, and purpose.

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What is Well-being? The 7 Circles of Well-being

From my point of view, approaching well-being from only a psychological point of view is somewhat limited. Our emotional, psychological, and social well-being play an important role in the maintenance of our psychological health but there are other equally important aspects. Physical well-being and spiritual well-being are two of them. I like to tap into Eastern Psychology because it identifies us as being made of energy (or light) and it describes a model of our human energy field based on seven different layers or bodies.

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BOOK REVIEW: How To Make One Hell Of A Profit and Still Get To Heaven by Dr. John Demartini

Are you passionate about a service you wholeheartedly provide and yet feel awkward when it comes to charging for it? Do you struggle to know the value of the work you do? Or did you ever wonder how could you overcome money consciousness issues? If you said yes to at least one of these questions, then Dr. John Demartini’s book is for you.

I included this book on my 2022’s reading list because I wanted to become more confident about putting a value on the services and products I provide to people. I have been always interested in helping others but I never really felt comfortable about charging for my helping services. This is a huge problem when you are in the helping professionals league and you want to take charge of your financial well-being.

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Although I was expecting a lot more from this book, I found precious examples and philosophical nuggets that have inspired me to stay on track and keep learning. My goal is to find solutions that allow me to help other people, which I love to do, and make a living for myself and my family at the same time. After all, if you provide a service or product to people, it’s only fair that you receive something in return, as Dr. John Demartini describes in its “Principle of Fair Exchange”.

Principle of Fair Exchange: Paying a fair price for a fair service in a timely manner. (Dr. John Demartini)

One aspect I love about Dr. John Demartini’s philosophy is that he approaches money and business from both material and spiritual perspectives. He puts great emphasis on the quality of your consciousness and values. If you want to do work that you love, your intent must be fully aligned with your values and the natural laws of the universe. You can find what your intent and values are by putting the book’s exercises into practice. In each chapter, you will find at least two of them.

Philosophy apart, you will also find some investing guidelines in chapter 7, Evolutionary Investing. I found this chapter rather interesting and yet a tad rushed through. After reading it once, you might need to come back to it a few times in order to grasp what Dr. John Demartini suggests you do. I wish the book had more of this kind of information and that it was written in a more intelligible way for those who are not so familiar with money investing.

If you are interested in learning more about how relationships and your life purpose can make a difference in your business development and growth, I highly recommend you this book. It’s a good start to rethink business and to see it as a service to humanity rather than a means to an end. It also helps you feel empowered to pursue a career in which you do what you love, and you are also fairly paid for it. After all, it’s possible as Dr. John Demartini illustrates in this book.

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12 Books to Read in 2022, If You Want to Boost Your Well-being

I compiled a list of 12 books to focus my attention on throughout 2022. These are books I have been really wanting to read and they cover different aspects of well-being. Some are more spiritually inclined (e.g. Alchemy of Light) while others are more finance-oriented (How to Make One Hell of a Profit and Still Go To Heaven).

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BOOK REVIEW: Creative Journal Writing by Stephanie Dowrick

I did enjoy Stephanie’s book a lot and I strongly recommend you to peek on it, if you are into journaling and writing as a method of self-expression and personal transformation. You will find many interesting prompts across the entire book so that you can work your writing flow and perhaps discover more about yourself within specific topics to which you never really paid much attention to.

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What Is Positive Psychology? The Science of Well-being

Positive Psychology is a field of study within Psychology that focuses and promotes well-being and happiness. One of its goals is to help people live and perform at their best by putting people’s strengths and virtues to work for themselves and their community. Although it’s a relatively recent field, Positive Psychology has embraced and researched topics that have been promoted through other psychology branches such as Humanistic and Transpersonal Psychology.

Positive Psychology is a field of study within Psychology that focuses and promotes well-being and happiness.

Some of the themes addressed by Positive Psychology include character strengths and virtues, positive emotion, resilience, growth mindset, positive relationships, and self-development. Positive Psychology does not deny the existence and importance of psychological issues. It offers instead an approach to problems that is solution-oriented and with a greater focus on what human beings need to thrive rather than only survive.

Thanks to the efforts of Positive Psychology researchers and educators, many models have been developed to describe how individuals may lead more fulfilling and happier lives. For instance, Martin Seligman, often considered the “father” of Positive Psychology, proposes a 5-element model of well-being and happiness that includes Positive emotions, Engagement, Relationships, Meaning, and Accomplishments. This model has been known as the “P.E.R.M.A.” model and it has been used worldwide. To learn more about it, please consult Martin Seligman’s book Flourish.

Flourishing has been a concept interchangeably used with human well-being in Positive Psychology. Human flourishing can be perceived as a complete state of emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It describes a broad range of states and relevant well-being outcomes such as mental and physical health, happiness and life satisfaction, meaning and purpose, character and virtue, and interpersonal relationships. People flourish when they experience positive emotions, positive mental states, and positive relationships with others.

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