Yoga Challenge: Niyamas (Personal Observances) #4 – Svadhyaya (Self-Study)

Daily Yogi branch of Niyamas lower limb of yoga - Saucha, Santosha, Tapas, Svadhyaya, Ishvara Pranidhana
Niyamas – Saucha, Santosha, Tapas, Svadhyaya, Ishvara Pranidhana

Happy Day 9 of our 30 Day Yoga Challenge – Svadhyaya

Today we are examining the fourth of the five Niyamas – Svadhyaya or Self-Study.

2nd Limb of Yoga – Niyamas #4 – Svadhyaya (Self-Study)

Svadhyaya (svad-HYEYE-ya) literally translates from Sanskrit as reading or reciting to oneself, but is typically translated as self-study. Svadhyaya includes not only self-study, but also study of “sacred texts.” This includes the sacred texts of Yoga such as the Yoga Sutras where we take inspiration for Yogi Daily’s positive practices. This also includes reading or studying sacred texts of any and all world religions such as the Bible, Buddhist texts, or whatever religious or philosophical texts resonate with you.

Svadhyaya is all about approaching life with the open mind and heart of a scholar, continuously leaning and growing. It is also about actually practicing learning. This is our first Svadhyaya day, so we will focus on self-study and new beginnings rather than scripture.

Today’s Positive Practice suggestion

Today’s Daily Yogi Practice is to start keeping a journal. I have found a journal to be one of the best ways to study and learn oneself, directly from yourself! Buy a guided or blank paper journal, or make a free online journal (password protect for privacy!) with LiveJournal or WordPress. If you already keep a journal or diary, start adding to your entries about this new journey you are beginning with us. Remember to include notes about both events and your feelings.

Want more Svadhyaya practices? Check out our Svadhyaya Guide!

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Want more Ideas for journal day?
Check our Journal prompts board on Pinterest!

Share your Practice

Please comment and let us know if you keep a diary/journal now, or if this is new for you! If this is already part of your life, please share how often you write or your feelings and experience with keeping a journal. If this is new for you, let us know if you went paper or electronic, and how you feel about staring this new practice. Always remember, be kind!

6 thoughts on “Yoga Challenge: Niyamas (Personal Observances) #4 – Svadhyaya (Self-Study)

  1. My Livejournal from high school/college/early 20s is still floating around. I just used it to write about everyday life (and am glad I did, because a lot of it is hilarious now). I stopped journaling regularly in my old/boring age 😂 but doing a steam of consciousness/brain dump always helps when I’m having a rough time. I can’t write fast enough to keep up with my thoughts so electronic is the way to go for me!

    1. Your livejournal is GOLD. I’m so glad you kept yours, and documenting our first turkey struggles 😀 I deeply regret deleting mine in my past life as a CPA, and I am so thankful we can go back to yours.

  2. I bought a journal a few years ago that I never used. I’m going to keep it next to my bed and start a dream journal. I’ve been having a lot of dreams lately but can’t remember much.

    1. SUCH a cool idea!!! I always wanted to keep a dream journal… but now at high altitude I rarely dream. My friend kept a dream journal and had a couple interpretation books. Can’t wait to hear how this goes <3!!

  3. I definitely have trouble committing to journaling, so I’m gonna go with the “Morning Pages” style and just do a short stream of consciousness in the mornings.

  4. I also need to commit to beginning a journal. After I complete my final exam this coming Monday I’ll treat myself to a new notebook for journaling. I do better writing by hand versus on a computer.

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