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Hilary Jackendoff: What Yoga Nidra Means to Me


Apply with Hilary on Wanderlust TV: her new assortment, Reclaim Your Proper to Relaxation, is a 4-part yoga nidra collection that can help wholesome sleep habits and permit deep therapeutic. Entry this assortment, together with 1000’s of yoga, meditation and motion lessons on WLTV with a free 14-day WLTV trial.


I’ve been speaking in regards to the life-changing advantages of relaxation and yoga nidra for almost 15 years, and I’ve by no means wavered in my evangelizing as a result of I do know simply how highly effective this apply actually is.

Let’s journey again to the day all of it started for me: February 9, 2008. I hate to be dramatic, however that basically was ‘the day my life modified perpetually.’

I used to be residing in New Zealand and wanted a ‘break’ from my boyfriend on the time, so I went on retreat to a conventional yoga ashram. I used to be mendacity on the heated flooring of a yurt, overlooking Golden Bay, being guided into my first yoga nidra by a particularly tall, extraordinarily blonde German sannyasin (yogic monk) named Swami Marutdeva.

hilary jackendoff yoga nidraI had been struggling by way of my adolescence and early 20s with insomnia and anxiousness (and this was earlier than smartphones). I had been working towards meditation in a Buddhist custom for some time by this level, however the strategies I’d practiced at my native Kadampa heart in Philadelphia by no means landed. I by no means felt peaceable. I at all times simply felt like I used to be sitting in a pool of my very own psychological filth for an excruciating 45 minutes at a time.

Yoga nidra was totally different, although. That very apply delivered all the good things. I felt like I melted effortlessly right into a state of what I can solely describe as bliss. Immediately, I lastly understood what was potential by way of meditation. I lastly understood what it felt wish to let go—to launch all pressure. To expertise a quiet thoughts. To maneuver past the thoughts. It was a full on religious expertise. And I needed extra.

I turned a yoga nidra junkie. It’s all I talked about. I organized my life to verify I acquired my repair on a regular basis. I practiced a lot that in just some months, I had memorized three 45 minute recordings, syllable by syllable. It fully shifted my relationship to sleep, and offered main aid for my insomnia and anxiousness.

I needed to go even deeper. That October, I went on retreat to spend a while on the yoga lineages’ ashram in India. After a strong religious expertise in India, I knew I needed to be within the lineage. So in I went. Over the span of 8 years, I took 2 Tantric initiations into the lineage, and spent 2 years residing and learning at an ashram as a sannyasin.

Throughout a interval at residence in New Jersey, between ashram years, I skilled a horrible trauma. I misplaced my childhood finest pal and subsequent door neighbor to a heroin overdose. (I deeply want he might have recognized peace and obliteration of the ego by way of yoga nidra. It may need helped him get off heroin.)

I used to be with Rocky the day earlier than he died, and my final phrases to him had been, “I like you Rock. Don’t you go dying on me.” The following morning, on December 30, 2012, I watched him being carried out by the paramedics from my childhood bed room window.

Hilary Jackendoff I returned to the ashram every week after his funeral to finish my 2nd yr of examine. Deep in grief and affected by trauma, I skilled a brutal bout of insomnia that lasted 3 months. Yoga nidra was my secure house. It was the one means I might get relaxation. It was the one time I felt peaceable. It was the one factor that saved me sane, provided that I used to be in such a state of extreme sleep deprivation and emotional ache. It additionally helped me combine the feelings and progressively launch the sensation of accountability I had been holding onto since his loss of life.

I’ve personally skilled each single certainly one of yoga nidra’s transformative advantages: aid of stress and anxiousness. Restoring my sleep and relaxation. Emotional therapeutic of trauma. Transformation. Letting go. Religious oneness. Yoga nidra has helped me make sense of life. Actually, it’s offered me with my life’s path.

The photograph above was taken shortly after I acquired my religious identify from Swami Satsangi Saraswati. Your religious identify represents your potential, and serves as a mantra to remind you of your highest self every time it’s spoken.

It’s no coincidence that my religious identify is Om. The mantra of yoga nidra. The image of Om 🕉  represents the 4 states of consciousness—waking, dreaming, sleeping and the fourth—pure consciousness in deep sleep—the state of yoga nidra.

So, I’m going to attempt to dwell as much as my identify. I’m going to maintain on conserving on, guiding people into relationship with yoga nidra—the apply and the state—with the hope that it’ll rework their lives because it did mine.

Hilary Jackendoff -

Hilary Jackendoff is a Yoga Nidra and meditation trainer, in addition to a Instructor Coach and Human Design coach. In 2008, she started learning Tantric Yoga, then spent two years formally coaching whereas residing at an ashram in Australia. In 2019, she found Human Design and has been creating containers and training choices for de-conditioning, built-in with Yogic practices. Hilary’s work is devoted to sharing accessible instruments and grounded religious teachings to encourage self-inquiry so you’ll be able to launch stress and self-judgment and awaken self-love, inside ease, and pleasure.

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