Yoga was a practice common to ancient Nubia and Kemet (commonly known as Egypt), however, due to the influence of Asiatic yoga that has swept the Western world, the majority of black people do not know nor recognise Yoga to be a practice of African people, that existed anciently and still exist now, although not always under the term Yoga.
What is Kemetic Yoga? KemeticYoga.org
This part of the article is a compilation of quotes taken from Kemeticyoga.org, so as not to misconstrue or alter the intended understanding of Kemetic Yoga. The full article can be found at What is Kemetic Yoga?
Yoga is not a religion in the common sense of the phrase. Yoga is a system of disciplines by which one can achieve the highest state of consciousness.
Kemetic yoga dates back 10,000 years as a practice in ancient Kemet (Egypt). The word “yoga” is Sanskrit, meaning to yoke or bind, and is of Indian origin.
In the Kemetic teachings this process of yoga is called Smai Tawi which means UNION OF THE TWO LANDS, not to be confused with physical land masses, but is an explanation of the higher and lower nature within the human entity. The hieroglyphic inscription for Smai Tawi is
Also, the term for union is Smai and is illustrated with a standard that represents the trachea and lungs.
In the Kemetic teachings, it shows how every human being is composed of a higher nature and a lower nature. The practice of Smai Tawi is to unite the lower with the higher.
The early sages knew that the untrained mind is very fickle and actually needs an anchor to stabilize it through the yogic process. So they created the spiritual symbols, gave them names and applied certain myths and rituals around each one to foster a greater understanding of the human experience. The Gods and Goddesses are the primary focus in the practice of Kemetic Yoga. The Gods and Goddesses are not deities in the common sense of the word either, but are cosmic principles.
Yirser Ra Hotep, Founder and Teacher of Kemetic Yoga in the US
Yirser Ra Hotep (Elvrid C. Lawrence), is the most senior instructor of Kemetic Yoga in the U.S. as well as being one of its founders. He also created a new style called YogaSkills Method (YSM) which ventures away from the traditional Indian teachings of Yoga. Both styles have roots in ancient Egypt and combine movement with breath control. After practicing and teaching yoga for over 30 years, Hotep decided one of his life’s missions was to influence others and bring Kemetic Yoga and YSM to the mainstream. His intention is to have an international organization with certified instructors teaching and promoting his unique brand of Yoga.
How can Kemetic Yoga help black people?
The health of the black population is continually deteriorating, especially in the last twenty years and there is a reason for that, lifestyle. The lifestyle that most of us have become accustomed to, polluted cities, stressful jobs, poor diet, lack of exercise, is not only unhealthy but destructive. We all understand the implications of leading these lives and many of us make our attempts from time to time to do better.
Kemetic yoga is believed to assist us on the journey of a healing transformation that will lead to a better you, physically, mentally, spiritually and in your actions. It further supports the understanding that in the focus of healing oneself, we also begin to heal our communities.
Kemetic yoga as other yoga practices is a method to find inner peace in a hectic world. A deep sense of inner peace that permits one to look internally, steadying one’s mind, body, thoughts and emotions. This leads to being able to look at the world from your own consciousness and thus gaining a clearer vision for your life and actions.
Kemetic yoga is a healing process that is aimed at liberating one’s mind and body to bring about a healthier means of living. If you feel the need to welcome a holistic way of living Kemetic yoga is worth looking into.
Yogapreneur: Yirser Ra Hotep Discusses His Unique Yoga Style, Black Enterprise, http://www.blackenterprise.com/lifestyle/yoga_entrepreneur-yirser/