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The Elixir of Life

In yoga and ayurveda, the primary substance of life is called rasa. Rasa is a beautiful word that can mean juice, sap, relish, taste, an elixir, or a charm. It is the essential fluid of any living creature like the sap in a maple tree, the latex solution in a milkweed plant, and the fluid inside a creepy crawly. In human beings, rasais plasma or serous fluid, the “ground substance” that underlies all biological function. However, rasa is not just fluid but is linked to deep feeling, particularly the sentiment of love or delight.

The Sanskrit poets go wild over rasa, writing verses to evoke its sentiment in the reader. Over time, the more you yoke to aesthetic experiences of beauty, tenderness, sorrow, and joy, the more you will feel affinity for the soul-spirit that pervades all things. So every day let your heart bleed a little bit. In every practice, drop by drop, be inspired by rasa through movement, song, sensory awareness, or heart-centered meditation. Without rasa, a practice can become metallic, technical, exacting, unsympathetic and hard. Without rasa, the mind dominates the heart.

When rasa flows inside, it moves like an elixir manifesting as little tingles, quivers, flutters, and sighs. As you feel your heart expand, come into sympathetic resonance with the wonder of the world.

Alchemy + Aim