Fully Embodied, Fully Enlivened, Fully Enlightened, Fully Empowered Consciousness

By Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati

When you are fully present in your body, it is fully enlivened, yet your experience is that you are Consciousness while living in your body.  A body with no one home is called a corpse.  As you become more embodied and more enlivened, you come to know who you are.  The deeper level of this experiential knowing is the inner discovery of your own Self, your inherent Divinity.  Then you bring it into the world.

  • Fully Embodied — Any area where you have pain or tension is an area where you’re not fully embodied. You vacated the area long ago and it’s “dying on the vine.”  Your body is suffering from your absence.  Pain is how your body gets your attention, so you’ll come back and occupy this part of your territory.  Unfortunately, pain also makes you recoil away from the area that hurts, when the exact opposite is needed.  Simply send a few slow breaths into the painful area and it will begin to feel better.  It might take 8 or 10 breaths if it’s been a long time since you lived in there.  And you’ll have to do it again and again, until you move back in.
  • Fully Enlivened — Your presence in your body is what makes it alive. As you become more present, your body becomes more enlivened, thus healthier, stronger and more vital.  As wonderful as this can be, the point is not merely about your physical condition.  It’s wonderful to be well and to feel well, but it is merely a symptom of your being present.  This power of your own presence is yoga’s true goal.
  • Fully Enlightened — Knowing and being the Divinity that you already are, you radiate Consciousness. Often called “enlightened,” the term implies that you are shining with light, like a light bulb.  You are not merely full of light, you are the light itself, the knowingness itself.  You are the beingness that is being all.
  • Fully Empowered — Not merely experiencing the bliss of Consciousness, you bring it into the world in an active way. Making enlightened decisions, you carry them into action.  Enlightenment is not retirement.  Enlightenment is empowerment.  It motivates you to make a difference in the world, not just for the few people you are related to.  Your mission expands along with your ability to accomplish it.

Together these four phrases mean you are Consciousness, being an individual who lives in a body, which is a form of Consciousness.  To know your own Self is to embrace embodiment along with all it brings, yet knowing that you are more than the circumstances of your life or condition of your body.

I coined this phrase to succinctly describe the goal as well as the pathway toward it.  It helps you understand the purpose of the Svaroopa® Yoga poses and breathing practice.  Each inner opening makes you better able to be present in your body.  Your body becomes progressively more and more enlivened, while you become more fully aware of who you are, the one that lives in your body.  You bring that fullness of being into your life and into the world.

This is pure tantra.  This phrase says that, as you become more established in the Consciousness that you already are, you also become more embodied and more alive.  You participate in life fully.  This is not an ethereal, other-worldly spirituality.  It’s not about becoming airy, frail, impractical, inept or incompetent.  As the full spectrum of human capacity awakens in you, you become more competent, more productive, more powerful and more compassionate, all at the same time.