energy body yoga with James Traverse

see also: Seven Stages of the Spiritual Journey

"What we are looking for, is what's looking." ~ St. Francis of Assisi

 James Traverse
James with B K S Itengar at Yoga Conference
James with B K S Iyengar at Yoga Conference in Canada

James Traverse  Nisarga Yoga

Nisarga Yoga is Hatha Yoga in the light of the wisdom of Vedanta.

Classes include energy body postures and commentary on the Upanishads and Nonduality.

The real body is the energy body, not the physical body.

The physical body is an appearance - it is a form that energy takes.

Yoga means union. It is the union of the material and spiritual realms.

Breathing is the link.

~ ~ ~

Nisarga Yoga - Energy Body Yoga

the  Space  of  the    Body

the   Silence of the   Mind

the    Stillness   of     Yoga


Breathing is Breath Flow and Blood Flow. Form is made out of Flow

- Union with Flow is Yoga.

Classes focus on Breathing, Yoga Poses, Guided Relaxation Meditation and Authentic Being

Breathing is the means and the end.

Nothing in this universe stands still - it is an Ocean of Motion as it Oscillates

and Vibrates it is Energy-In-Formation!

Breathing is Oscillation as Blood Flow and Vibration as Breath Flow.

 In this light Breathing Awareness is the means of Yoga/Union

with the Flow of Life and of realizing the true nature of Being...

and it is Always Available!

~ ~ ~

Yoga is a form of mind control.

The second sutra of Patanjali's Yoga Sutras says,

"Yogas chitta vritta nirodhah"

"Yoga is the cessation of the whirl of the mind."

In this light it is important to understand 'What is the mind?'

and 'What is meant by a yoga asana/pose?'

What is the mind?

The mind has four aspects:

1) Manas, the ability to think; to conceptualize experience

2) Chitta - the mind stuff itself; it can be likened to the ocean and vritta its waves/whirlpool - it is also the content/storage of information as memory

3) Ahamkara - the ego as the mentally generated I-entity [the false 'I']

4) Buddhi - the higher mind; the ability to discriminate; the will

Thus yogas chitta vritta nirodhah is understood as 'seeing through the mind' rather than 'seeing with the mind'

Two things are necessary for this quality of seeing as Buddhi, willful discrimination:

1) the mind must be silent, like a perfectly calm ocean;

2) the mind must be absolutely free of content, innocent; like the ocean water being perfectly clean/clear.

What is meant by a yoga asana/pose?

Asana literally means "seat" - it means to "take your seat" and when this is translated as the word "pose" it means the biblical direction to "be still and know". In other words "meditation".

The understanding that flowers out of this practice is the other biblical expression, "I am that I am" or said another way, "I am the knowing by which I know that I am." This is the experiential understanding of Nonduality.

Have you noticed that life is like the Flow of a river that you cannot push or stop?

Nisarga Yoga is a means of attuning with that Flow via Breathing and practice gives access to a higher intelligence than book learning and general knowledge. That higher intelligence is called Buddhi and action that arises with it is the definition of what the Bhagavad Gita speaks of as Yoga, which is that Yoga is skill in action. It is this skill in action that provides the widespread benefits to health and well-being and simultaneously it is a way to understand the deeper questions of life like, "Who am I?"; "What is life - does it have a meaning?";  "What does it mean to be new?"

Absolute freedom is natural being. Joy, peace, space, relaxation, etc. are attributes of your true nature. Ancient sages saw that most humans had lost this most basic freedom and they prescribed a means for us to rediscover our true being.

Yoga is what they prescribed and it is as relevant today as it was thousands of years ago. Yoga is a vast art and science with many branches. Each branch studies an aspect of truth, and ultimately all branches foster the realization of the true nature of being.

Yoga practice is in the timeless present. It is the living process of exploring truth and understanding true being now. Yoga is the means and the end.

The body-mind is a manifestation of truth, and it is innately intelligent. This intelligence, Buddhi, is one’s inner guru or teacher. The superior health benefits of yoga are extensive and are by-products of precise alignment and Choiceless Awareness, which are the foundation pillars of the practice.

Nisarga Yoga is a form of Hatha Yoga. Practitioners explore their closest environment, the energy body and mind, via breathing, the physical challenge and precision of Iyengar Yoga and the wisdom of Advaita Vedanta.

Yoga has traditionally been transmitted directly from an authentic teacher to the student. Because it is experiential in nature, this is the best way to study yoga. The books, tapes, and videos available today are recommended as aids to compliment an established practice and at times when one does not have access to a qualified teacher.

What is yoga? Yoga means union. Breathing Awareness is the means.


Yoga - Action in Meditation in Action

"An improvement in posture and breathing is not the sole nor even the primary aim of yoga. Instead, it is either a therapeutic method of freeing the mind from false beliefs, or the insight into ultimate reality, the dharmas, achievable by this method. Yoga is an intrinsic and integrated system consisting of metaphysics, the philosophy of mind, the theory of knowledge, ethics and the philosophy of language."

Yoga is an ancient art and science that has many branches, all of which study the relationship/union of things. It is in the very nature of a mistake to cease to be, when seen. Nisarga Yoga is a means of accessing the higher intelligence of Buddhi, which is a way of seeing or understanding as insight or clarity. In this way the practice of Nisarga Yoga is the dynamic art of effortlessly dissolving barriers to reveal the existing universal connections and to allow the full flowering of goodness and health.

Breathing Awareness is simultaneously the beginner's and most advanced yoga practice, it is the master key to health and well-being, and, to understanding the mysteries of life.

Asanas (yoga poses) are of a branch called Hatha Yoga. People have been practicing Hatha Yoga for thousands of years to promote inner peace, holistic health, and longevity, etc., and to rediscover genuine freedom and innocence.  Energy Body Asanas are the foreground activity that occur against the background of meditation, they are action in meditation and meditation in action. Initially the practitioner tends to focus on the physical precision and benefits, and in Nisarga Yoga the practitioner learns to focus on the energy body, which is a pointer to the meditative mind, and there is the realization that true being is available now. Asana practice represents the third limb of the eight limbs of Patanjali's Yoga [the eight limbs of Astanga or Patanjali's Yoga are: Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana, and Samadhi].

Nisarga  Yoga views the eight limbs of yoga as:

Ashtanga Yoga - The Eight Limbs of Yoga

    - The five Yamas and five Niyamas, which are foundational moral and ethical guidelines.

    - Asanas focus on the Energy Body.

    - Pranayama focuses on the Flow [enrgy] of Breathing.

    - Pratyahara focuses on the Senses [Pratyahara is the switchover from attending to the objects of perception to attending to the perceiving itself]..

    - Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi focus on the Mind as Samyana-Total Attention [Dharana-Concentration, Dhyana-Meditation, Samadhi-Absorption- understanding the true nature of being].

Ahimsa is the key to the application of the Yamas and Niyamas as it means without violating natural order and this is so because the other moral and ethical guidelines naturally flower out of Ahimsa. The other six limbs of Astanga Yoga concern the Body-Asanas, Senses-Pratyahara, and Mind-Dharana-Dhyana-Samadhi, the link between the Body and Mind is Breathing-Pranayama [note that Pratyahara is the Switchover of focus from the Body to the Mind via the relationship with the Senses and that like all of Yoga this Switchover is in sync with Breathing-Pranayama].

Seven Stages of the Spiritual Journey


The spacious, silent, meditative mind is the explosion of Love. Love knows no separation. To it far is near. It is not the one or the many, but rather that in which all division ceases.  Like Beauty and Truth, it is not of the measure of thought. From pure stillness alone the meditative mind governs action, yoga is the choiceless awareness of this action as it animates the body-mind. Its movement manifests with flawless ease and harmony. This is the benediction that one is ever seeking.

In the absence of even the idea of absence there is Presence, the experiential understanding of this is yoga. 


Living Questions and Themes:


Every sage has said, “Know Thyself.”

Who am I?

Are you aware?

What is Nonduality video -

What is Health?

Will yoga help me in my daily life?

What is the Energy Body?

What is Meditation?

What is Freedom?

What does it mean to be new?

What is Breathing?

Will practicing yoga reduce my stress? … Relieve my back pain? …Can I be flexible?


True Relaxation… The Ease of Being!

What does it mean to Listen?



 Energy Body Yoga with James Traverse

 James Traverse is a revered student and semi-retired, senior teacher of Nisarga Yoga, who has over 40 years of experience in the practice and teaching of yoga.

James studied Iyengar Yoga with Lisa Schwartz for 8 years in the 1970’s and went on to complete many intensives, conferences and apprenticeships with senior Iyengar teachers in various locations globally. In 1987 he studied Iyengar Yoga directly with B.K.S. Iyengar and Geeta Iyengar in Pune, India. He began teaching on a full-time basis in 1985 when he moved to Halifax and founded ‘Iyengar Yoga of Halifax’.

In 1990 he moved to Victoria, B.C. where he continued to teach, and while living there he expanded his yoga studies to include Advaita Vedanta and Kashmir Shavism, with Jean Klein, a medical doctor, musicologist, and sage. James’ Advanta Vedanta and Kashmir Shaivism [the energy body work] studies were from 1990-1996, in Seattle, Wash., Joshua Tree, Ca. and New York, N,Y.

Today James again resides in Halifax and teaches Nisarga Yoga, which is a blend of the technical precision of Iyengar Yoga, the energy body flow (the breath body) of Kashmir Shavism and the nondual wisdom of Advaita Vedanta.

Classes with James are available through the Samadhi Yoga House in Fall River [1397 Fall River Road - across the street from the Junior High School].

Call 902 702 3249 to chat with James about times and rates for public and private sessions.

Public Class fee is $80 for an 8 week session of 1 class per week (these fees include taxes).

Drop-ins $15 [Other Yoga teachers $10/class]

Private Classes and consultations are by appointment and the fee is $108 per hour.


James’ contact info:



phone: 902 702 3249

facebook: Yoga for Health and Wellness with James Traverse

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